Live Music: Steely Dan; Blair Crimmins; Hartwell Littlejon; A Place Both Wonderful and Strange

Great live music to check out this week

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PROVIDED
  • Provided

OLD TIMEY | Blair Crimmins and the Hookers
w/ Flat Foot Floozies and Double Trash
Thurs. Sept. 12
$5
9 p.m.
Royal American

In 2010 Blair Crimmins and the Hookers released The Musical Stylings Of, a lively blast of hot jazz and ragtime flair that had people far and wide doing the Charleston. Crimmins and his backing band bring plenty of playfulness to their music with songs like “Hookers on the Rag,” “This Modern World,” and “Can’t Fake a Smile.” Recently, Crimmins and the Hookers released their second album, Sing-a-Longs, which moves out of the music of the ’20s and ’30s and into the big-band bounce of the ’40s. Tracks vacillate from the cabaret swing of “The Krog Street Strut” to the gentle soft-shoe of “I Love You That’s All,” and the flying, Glenn Miller-ish, “Run That Rabbit Down.” The sound’s more full-bodied and wall-to-wall than The Musical Stylings Of, and the pace isn’t as breakneck, which allows more room for Crimmins’ seductive vocals to come through. It’s a fine second chapter. —Chris Parker ThursdAY

ZHANG QINGYUN
  • Zhang Qingyun

SOUNDTRACK | A Place Both Wonderful and Strange
w/ Ghost Cop
Fri. Sept. 13
Free
The Sparrow

Twin Peaks, David Lynch’s short-lived foray into broadcast television, is without a doubt one of the more curious shows to ever receive a greenlight. But we don’t have to tell you that. You know all about Agent Dale Cooper, his love of coffee and pie, the late Laura Palmer, the Log Lady, and the series’ surreal mix of humor, suspense, and backward-talking dream-sequence dwarves. And you either liked the show or you considered leaving the U.S. for somewhere else that made sense. The electronic-duo of Russ Marshalek (a.k.a A Place Both Wonderful and Strange) and Lucy Swope (a.k.a. Ghost Cop) are among the former, and this week they roll into town to perform the soundtrack to the Twin Peaks film, Fire Walk With Me, in its entirety, albeit with a bit of a musical makeover. “I actually saw Twin Peaks for the first time with Lucy one Christmas, and it was addictive,” Marshalek says. “The re-soundtracking came about from a monthly DJ gig I used to have in my neighborhood, when one Halloween I drunkenly decided I should re-soundtrack the pilot to Twin Peaks. The next day I realized I had to figure out something pretty special in order to pull that off.” Eventually, Marshalek decided to tackle the film, which he actually likes better than the TV show. “It’s weird, it’s horrific, it’s hilarious, it’s very, very Lynch,” he says. Before you catch the show, head online and give Marshalek’s newest mixtape, Damn I Feel Like A Witch, a spin. It’s a WTF mashup up of “decaying, destroyed country” and electronica. —Chris Haire FRIDAY

PROVIDED
  • Provided

SINGER-SONGWRITER | Hartwell Littlejohn
w/ Punks & Snakes, Bradley MacLean
Fri. Sept. 13
9 p.m.
$5
Tin Roof

Hartwell Littlejohn has a difficult time describing his music. The New York based singer-songwriter — and former Holy City resident — once had this to say about his sound: “I guess you’d call it post-past/mid-fi/indie-Americana, or Pavement meets Poco. Or, perhaps, Poco eats the pavement.” Strangely enough, all of those descriptions work. Littlejohn’s latest, a 2013 self-titled EP, is proof of that. We wouldn’t go as far as to say his songs are funny, but there’s such a genial nature to them. He’s like a more personable, less sardonic love child of Warren Zevon and Elvis Costello. Just queue up the country-swinging “Gloria,” the old school rock ‘n’ roller “Maureen,” and the front-porch foot-stomper “A Woman Like You,” and you’ll quickly discover one of the more easygoing singer-songwriters around. In some ways, Littlejohn crafts songs that seem effortless. “The best songs, if there are any, require nothing,” Littlejohn says. “But there are plenty of songs that are maybe just OK, or downright bad, and those require some motivation to simply finish them so you can get on to the next thing.” —Chris Haire FRIDAY

DANNY CLINCH, COURTESY OF STEELY DAN
  • Danny Clinch, Courtesy of Steely Dan

BOOMER ROCK | Steely Dan
Sun. Sept. 15
7:30 p.m.
$74-$124
North Charleston Performing Arts Center

Walter Becker and Donald Fagen met while at Bard College in upstate New York in the late Sixties, when they played together in a number of combos including one with Chevy Chase on drums. They moved to Brooklyn for a couple years before heading to California in 1971 where they started Steely Dan. From the start, they cleverly combined loose jazz-soul rhythms with crisp soft-rock production. Their seven albums from ’72-’80 are the most meticulously recorded material of the era. By their third album, Pretzel Logic (featuring the hit “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number”), Becker and Fagen had given up touring and become solely a studio act. Their partnership had grown strained by 1980’s Gaucho, and the duo separated for more than a decade. Becker and Fagen returned in 1993 and have toured off-and-on the last two decades while releasing a pair of new studio albums, the last being 2003’s Everything Must Go. Their ’72 debut album, Can’t Buy a Thrill, still remains one of the finest debut albums ever. They’ve assembled a rich catalog of keenly crafted soul-rock sophistication — “Deacon Blues,” “Do It Again,” “Reelin’ in the Years,” and more — and word is they’ve never sounded better live. —Chris Parker Sunday

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