Best concerts in L.A. this week: Herbie Hancock, Patti Smith, Thundercat

Patti Smith
Patti Smith and Her Band will perform as part of the “Power to the People!” festival at Walt Disney Concert Hall on March 6.
(Jean-Christophe Bott / EPA)

If Super Tuesday has you suffering a political hangover, try a little hair of the dog this week with a slate of cross-genre luminaries whose music is all about celebrating the power of humanity.

March 5
Herbie Hancock with the L.A. Phil
Kicking off the L.A. Phil’s “Power to the People!” festival, jazz legend Herbie Hancock and his band team up with Gustavo Dudamel for a performance highlighting music of inspiration. The night will feature collaborative takes culling from both groups’ respective styles, including Hancock’s tributes to Dr. Angela Davis — “Ostinato (Suite for Angela)” — and Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream.”

Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave. Tickets start at $91.

March 6
Patti Smith and Her Band
Next up for “Power to the People!” is the Godmother of Punk, Patti Smith. At 73, Smith remains a tour-de-force onstage as she and her crack band blast out selections from her superlative decades-spanning catalog.


Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave. Tickets are sold out but can be found on the secondary market.

March 7
Virtuosic bassist-singer Stephen Bruner is always a thrill live. After lending his talents to everyone from Kenny Loggins to Kendrick Lamr, this weekend he makes a welcome return to center stage as a solo artist as he gears up to release his latest album, “It Is What It Is,” in April.

The Wiltern, 3790 Wilshire Blvd. Tickets start at $59.

March 7
After nearly 10 years away, Austrian electronic producer and guitarist makes a welcome return to North America following his acclaimed 2018 album “Agora.” A mainstay of experimental music, Fennesz’s music melds guitar, field recordings and electronic textures to create lush, cerebral soundscapes that push the limits of noise on the live stage. Show up early to catch formidable genre compatriots Britton Powell and Celia Hollander.


Zebulon, 2478 Fletcher Drive. Tickets cost $20.

March 9
With two reunions over the last decade, Swedish hardcore punk icons Refused just can’t seem to stay away, and that’s more than fine with us. The band returns to L.A. on the heels of last year’s celebrated album, “War Music,” doling out radical takes on capitalism and politics. Canadian punks Metz will open.

1720, 1720 E. 16th St. Tickets cost $40.

March 10 and 11
The Rapture
After a triumphant reunion set at last year’s Just Like Heaven festival in Long Beach, dance punks The Rapture are taking an L.A. victory lap with a pair of shows at El Rey. With frenetic riffs, seductive melodies and frontman Luke Jenner’s iconic yelp, the group remains an absolute knockout live, delivering sets as raw and sweaty as their seediest New York club days.


El Rey, 5515 Wilshire Blvd. Tickets cost $30.