Best live music in L.A.: Dudamel, Queen, Mekons and more
From classical to folk-punk, heavy hitters from across the musical spectrum descend upon L.A. during the week ahead for a stacked selection of live offerings.
Gustavo Dudamel 10 Year Anniversary Concert
Celebrate the L.A. Phil’s decade under the guise of the city’s beloved conductor with “Bravo Gustavo!” at the Hollywood Bowl. Complete with fireworks, the evening will see Dudamel lead performances of Tchaikovsky and music from Hollywood’s Golden Age, including John Williams and Henry Mancini, with Khatia Buniatishvili on piano. Tickets start at $9. Hollywood Bowl, 2301 North Highland Ave., 8 p.m. Thursday.
Queen’s biopic-sparked victory lap continues this weekend as its “Rhapsody” tour hits town with singer Adam Lambert. Fans can expect a deep dive into the band’s hit-filled catalog (even the deep cuts are now karaoke standards) with a pair of shows sure to be as freewheeling and wild as the band’s storied legacy. The Forum, 3900 West Manchester Blvd., 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
Femme it Forward feat. Brandy, Monica, Ashanti and more
The summer’s multi-city “Femme it Foward” event series is a stacked celebration of female empowerment showcasing rising and established voices in music and entertainment. The Los Angeles edition hits the Microsoft Theater this weekend with a can’t-miss bill of pop, R&B and hip-hop icons. Brandy and Monica lead the night, alongside powerhouse peers Ashanti, Keri Hilson, Amerie and Lil Mo for an unforgettable night of slow jams and party anthems. Tickets start at $30. Microsoft Theater, 777 Chick Hearn Court, 7 p.m. Friday.
Indie polymath Dean Wareham returns to the Teragram stage for a special performance of “On Fire,” the 1989 album he recorded with erstwhile cult favorites Galaxie 500. Still regarded as an all-time favorite among critics and fans alike, the album’s dream pop riffs and orchestration remain as fresh and stirring as ever. Wareham will be joined for the performance by Luna bandmate Britta Phillips on bass, Jason Quever on guitar and Roger Brogan on drums. Tickets cost $26. Teragram Ballroom, 1234 West 7th St., 9 p.m. Friday.
Los Master Plus
Hailing from Guadalajara, Los Master Plus made their name as a mustachioed duo knocking out kitschy — and undeniably catchy — cumbia covers of everyone from Radiohead to Sisqo. But El Comanche and Larry Mon have since proven themselves as more than just a novelty, delivering electro-infused cumbia originals that will make for one heck of an outdoor dance party this weekend at MacArthur Park. Attendance is free. Levitt Pavilion, 2230 West 6th St., 7 p.m. Friday.
Lester Bangs once called Mekons “the most revolutionary group in the history of rock ‘n’ roll,” and with good reason. Since emerging in 1977, the folk-punk icons have honed their own path, muddling lines between genre, high and low art, and whatever other expectations have come their way. On the tails of their latest album, “Deserted,” the British American group stops by the cozy confines of Highland Park’s Lodge Room for a rare intimate set that’s sure to nudge the dial forward, as only Mekons can. Tickets cost $25. Lodge Room Highland Park, 104 North Avenue 56, 8 p.m. Monday.
Sun Ra Arkestra
Get an intimate taste of outer space with a special two-night run from the legendary Sun Ra Arkestra. Under the direction of 95-year-old saxophonist and bandleader Marshall Allen, the group upholds the spirit of its visionary jazz namesake with an ecstatic vision that makes its sprawling live set an absolute can’t-miss. Tickets cost $25. Zebulon, 2478 Fletcher Drive, 8 p.m. Monday and Tuesday.
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