Five freshly announced dosage MAGAZINE recommended live Philly gigs for 2021 at The Met, Union Transfer and the International Bar.
Whether you will have to wear masks and be distanced or go bare-faced and be allowed to crawl all over each other, no matter what happens with the pandemic and the Delta variants that follow it, I get a strong feeling there is no going back in any way, shape or form to total quarantine lock down ever again. That genie is so far out of the bottle, they’re buying winter wear.
Yes, slews of events have been announced, for indoor and outdoor perusal, since March. Yet, in the last several days alone, there is a rush to get your concert dollar while you’re still healthy. And these aren’t even shows that have been rescheduled, but, rather fresh and out of the oven.
Here is a brief sampling of the best of late summer and autumn live Philly gigs that have just dropped within the last 24 hours.
September 17 at the International Bar: Secretly Group’s “Paved Paradise” traveling label expo with rare records and exclusive collabs
The indie label umbrella organization, the Secretly Group and its Dead Oceans, Ghostly International, Jagjaguwar, Numero Group and Secretly Canadian subsidiaries just announced a 15 city expo of recorded music, exclusive collaborations, special guests, area breweries and local programming courtesy a 24-foot truck in a parking lot outside of 1624 N Front Street.
September 27 at Union Transfer: Leon Bridges
Bridges has been bouncing around the smooth nu-soul scene for several Grammy-nominated recordings that it’s downright weird hearing the Texan get raw, get weird and release something almost gruffly psychedelic on his new album Gold-Diggers Sound. No matter what style of soul he’s singing, live, it is always temperature raising and sensual.
October 20 at The Met Philly: Kamasi Washington
Few saxophonists have elevated the reeds into adventurous new music stratospheres – hip hop included – such as Kamasi Washington. Whether on his own recordings (his 2018 Heaven and Earth album) or in collaboration with the likes of Kendrick Lamar, Dinner Party and Flying Lotus, Washington is an always awesome force. And while he last played Philly’s Met in 2019 opening for jazz fusion giant Herbie Hancock, this time Washington is on his own on the large stage.
October 24 at The Met Philly: Elvis Costello and The Imposters
Another new Met show? WTF? No matter. Costello all but started his touring life in America at David Carroll’s long-defunct Hot Club on South Street, so why not make another notch in his Philly belt. Plus, Steve Nieve and Pete Thomas are still in Elvis Costello’s band.
October 27-Oct 30 at The Met Philly: Steely Dan
On the heels of Northeast Corridor, its first live album in 25 years (along with the release of sole remaining Steely, Donald Fagen’s The Nightfly Live), Steely Dan mount their usual brass blues fantasia and smooth soul jazz excursion filled with charmed caustic lyricism and high whining voices. I know the cover was shot at The Met during the last time Steely Dan played there. And more than likely, bits of the live show of 2019 was also recorded in Philly. So don’t say you’re never going back to your hometown, again.