January 4. New York band TriBeCaStan stirs together a rich and invigorating stew that fuses elements of Middle Eastern, Balkan, African, Latin American, and Indian styles, winning the effusive accolades of the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Village Voice. And with members who’ve played with James Brown, Ornette Coleman, Patti Smith, the Violent Femmes, Ween, and Taj Mahal, it’s safe to say the group has the Western-music side down as well. This return date by the torrid ensemble at the Towne Crier gets 2014 off to a euphoric start. (Chip Taylor visits January 9; Caravan of Thieves steals in January 25.) 8:30pm. $15.
Beacon. (845) 855-1300.
Why and how dare she devote an entire album to songs by Laura Nyro when we can just listen to the originals on Spotify? I'll tell you why. Because Christine Spero fully inhabits these songs, uncovers hidden nuances, and with her stunning ensemble—including drummer Peter O'Brien, bassist Scott Petito, saxophonist Elliot Spero, and Christine's own magic hands on the ivories.
If you want to catch some of the best jazz in the Hudson Valley, head over to the Derby bar and restaurant on Main Street in Poughkeepsie. Since 2013, the duo of pianist John Scanlon and bassist Ben Basile has held court there every Tuesday, jamming with an array of local talent each week and establishing Po-Town as a rising force in local bop.
With its open-air format, where attendees picnic in the parks and watch the stars emerge during performances, and its $5 youth tickets, the Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice is the perfect place to share with children a love of music and theater, in a variety of styles.