August opens this week with an abundance of live music. The calendar includes: a talk by Michelle Hoover; a Russian themed Concerts on the Square to close out the season; and more performances by The Portland Cello Project, the Michael Schenker Group, Claudia Russell & the Folk Unlimited Orchestra, The New Pornographers, Bob Log III, and The Grasshoppers.
NOTEWORTHY: Iraq invades Kuwait, 1990.
BIRTHDAYS: Irrepressible singer-songwriter-guitarist-satirist Mojo Nixon, 1957.
NOTEWORTHY: Lenny Bruce ODs on morphine, 1966.
BIRTHDAYS: Metallica singer/guitarist James Hetfield, 1963.
A Room of One's Own, 6:30 pm
The author, an Iowa native who now teaches writing in Boston, reads from her debut novel, The Quickening. It's about a feud that riles two Iowa farm families during the Great Depression.
The Portland Cello Project
High Noon Saloon, 9 pm
This plucky band of eight to 16 cellists is just as likely to play an impromptu Britney Spears medley or a down 'n' dirty Salt 'N Pepa cover as they are to showcase Bach and Brahms.
NOTEWORTHY: Federal Communications Commission rescinds the Fairness Doctrine, 1987.
BIRTHDAYS: U.S. middle-distance track star Mary Decker, 1958; President Barack Obama, 1961.
Michael Schenker Group
Scatz Sports Bar & Nightclub, 7 pm
Fans of early 1980s hard rock still have their copies of the MSG's eponymous 1980 debut, which was a showcase for the guitar pyrotechnics of German-born Schenker. He founded the band after leaving UFO; he plays a flying-V guitar. With Lynch Mob, Sister Sin and Don Bakkin Band.
Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra
Capitol Square, 7 pm
Say it ain't so! The WCO concludes its Concert on the Square series with tonight's performance, so shed a tear as you eat those cheese and crackers. It's a program of Russian music including Tchaikovsky's "Waltz" from Sleeping Beauty, Rimsky-Korsakov's Russian Easter Overture and "Winter" from Alexander Glazunov's The Seasons.
Claudia Russell & the Folk Unlimited Orchestra
Brink Lounge, 7:30 pm
Technically, Russell is a folk singer and songwriter, as you may have guessed from her backing band's name. However, it's the type of folk that can't help but mingle with other genres, from blues to western swing, incorporating mandolin, guitar, string bass and the occasional accordion along the way.
The New Pornographers
Orpheum Theatre, 8 pm
Neko Case and A.C. Newman put on stellar solo shows, but watching them compete for the spotlight in their superstar indie-rock band can be even more fun. Plus, the group's summery new album, Together, is worth hearing live. With the Dodos.
NOTEWORTHY: Marilyn Monroe found dead, 1962.
BIRTHDAYS: Alleged actress Tawny Kitaen, 1961; Beastie Boy Adam Yauch, 1964.
Bob Log III
High Noon Saloon, 9 pm
Log's not just a one-man band; he's a one-man spectacle dressed up as a modern-day Evel Knievel. Whether he's dazzling you with his slide-guitar showmanship or bouncing a fan on his knee as his feet work the drums, you'll find yourself wondering why he never shows his face to the crowd. With the Pork Torta and Roboman.
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
Who says live music has to be expensive? The Majestic continues its free SummerJam series with a performance by the Grasshoppers, a sometimes funky, sometimes psychedelic local jam band.