The annual Pitch Music Showcase is one of my favorite events of the summer. Friday's party was no exception. Here are the three best things I took in during the three-and-a-half hours I spent in Westport.
1. Gee Watts at the Riot Room patio
I was charmed by the way in which the young rapper adapted his performance to the pitifully meager audience of about a dozen members of his entourage and 20 unrelated onlookers. He set the tone by referring to the intimate setting as a "poetry reading." Although he performed a few off-color selections like "Nasty", his low-key delivery on wrenching material like "Premature Hate" floored me. Between selections, Watts shared his views on God, capitalism and friendship. He even broke down one or two of his songs in the style of Rap Genius.
2. La Guerre at the RecordBar
I've seen Katlyn Conroy perform several times as a member of Cowboy Indian Bear. I've also enjoyed her recordings. Not until I witnessed her sing for about a dozen people at the RecordBar, however, did I grasp that her voice is a truly magnificent instrument.
3. Info Gates at the Riot Room patio
Info Gates, a hip-hop producer, songwriter and performer, was joined by Ubiquitous, Godemis and Les Izmore. It looked and sounded a lot like this.
I reviewed Saturday's concert by the Killers, Queens of the Stone Age, Gogol Bordello and the Virgins.
Strange Music continues to crank out product. "Why Me", is a track on Krizz Kaliko's new Son of Sam album, his fifth in six years.
Mills Record Company provides a nice analysis of the significance of the Get Up Kids' Four Minute Mile.
Mary Halvorson's stellar set at last weekend's Newport Jazz Festival is available as a free download. RIYL: Henry Threadgill, Marc Ribot, Charles Mingus.
I'm looking forward to hearing this week's new releases by Gary Burton, the Civil Wars, Chick Corea, Iwrestledabearonce, Christian McBride, Old Crow Medicine Show, the Polyphonic Spree, Elvis at Stax: Deluxe Edition, Revocation, Terje Rypdal, Beating The Petrillo Ban: The Late December 1947 Modern Sessions and Mutazione - Italian Electronic & New Wave Underground 1980 - 1988
Kansas City Click: Amon Amarth open for Rob Zombie at Cricket Wireless Amphitheater on Monday.
The Floozies perform Tuesday at Crossroads KC.
T.J. Martley performs with Bill McKemy and Matt Leifer at Unity of Kansas City North on Wednesday.
John Velghe & the Prodigal Sons appear at Knuckleheads on Thursday.
(Original image of Gee Watts by There Stands the Glass.)