The cultural highlights in our region this weekend include Bubu funk from Sierra Leone; Beethoven string quartets; a recital of works written expressly for trombone; literary readings; a circus featuring a burlesque queen; and a whole lot more.
English rock singer-songwriter Adam Masterson brings his distinctive blend of soul and rock to the Egremont Barn in South Egremont, Mass., tonight at 8pm. Masterson is often compared to Nick Drake and Van Morrison, and his vibe reminds me of early Bruce Springsteen and Jakob Dylan.
Sierra Leonean singer Janka Nabay brings his modern update of Bubu – an ancient Sierra Leonean call-and-response style of folk music influenced by the 18th-century Islam – to Club B-10 at MASS MoCA in North Adams, Mass., on Saturday at 8pm. With the help of his group, the Bubu Gang, Nabay turns this 500-year-old roots music into a frenetic, hypnotic, funky dance party.
Writers Alana Massey, Kris D’Agostino and Cynthia Huntington will read from their works at Spotty Dog Books & Ale in Hudson, N.Y., on Saturday at 7pm, as part of Volume, the free monthly reading and music series every second Saturday of the month. The readings will be followed by book-signing and a musical set by DJ Peter Aaron.
Hudson’s own Bindlestiff Family Cirkus concludes its sixth annual Cabin Fever Cabaret series at Club Helsinki Hudson on Saturday at 9pm, with a variety of circus, theater, comedy and musical entertainers, including Burlesque Hall of Fame queen Trixie Little. Trixie will NOT be on hand for Bindlestiff’s show at Helsinki on Sunday afternoon at 3pm, when the performance will be safe for children and other living things.
The Takács Quartet performs three works by Ludwig van Beethoven in a free concert at Chapin Hall on the Williams College campus on Sunday, March 12, at 3pm. The New York Times recently lauded the ensemble for “revealing the familiar as unfamiliar, making the most traditional of works feel radical once more,” and the Financial Times described a recent concert thusly: “Even in the most fiendish repertoire these players show no fear, injecting the music with a heady sense of freedom. At the same time, though, there is an uncompromising attention to detail: neither a note nor a bow-hair is out of place.”
A recital of American music for trombone, featuring Ronald Barron, retired principal trombonist of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, will take place at Richmond Mass., Congregational Church on Sunday at 3pm. The concert, which will benefit the Richmond Emergency Fuel Assistance Fund, also features pianist Larry Wallach, soprano Pamela Wolfe, and bassist Larry Wolfe
An exhibition of hand-thrown porcelain by Berkshire-based artisan Daniel Bellow is on view at the Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, Mass., now through Monday, May 22. The work by the accomplished potter is remarkable for its exquisite glazes and intriguing textured surfaces. The unique sculptural rocket ships-like figures in the exhibition echo the work of Song dynasty potters, whose smooth, dense porcelainware was praised for its simplicity of shape and understated decoration.
Seth Rogovoy is editor of Berkishire Daily and the Rogovoy Report, available online at rogovoyreport.com