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Posted at 6:46 PM ET, 02/29/2008

March Mixtape

By David Malitz

The word legend gets thrown around a lot, but March brings more than a few to town. Boogie piano icon Pinetop Perkins visits Glen Echo, sax great Maceo Parker will make the State Theatre funky and a couple of underground rock heroes, Bob Mould and Stephen Malkmus, visit the 9:30 club. Download tracks from all of them and more on this month's mixtape.

"Katrina" - Red Stick Ramblers (March 1, Glen Echo Spanish Ballroom)
This Lousiana quintet will have you dancing up a storm with its romping, Cajun-flavored, western swing tunes.

"Sober Driver" - Dengue Fever (March 1, Black Cat)
As I like to do once a month (more if I'm feeling especially lazy), I'll let the band's own descriptor stand on its own, since it works so well: "a Cambodian pop rock psychedelic dance party." This tune leans more toward the "pop rock dance party."

"Do You Love Me?" - Maceo Parker (March 1, State Theatre)
This song comes from an album called "Funk Overload," which is a perfect way to describe the work of the saxman who led James Brown's horn section during its most dynamite years.

"First Sight" - These United States (March 3, Iota)
The local alt-folkies led by Jesse Elliott have a warm, inviting sound with plenty of pop and a bit of twang.

"Don't Touch My [Expletive]" - The Coathangers (March 6, The Red & the Black)
These young punks from Atlanta are all nervous, manic energy, bringing to mind a righteous combo of the Slits and Le Tigre.

"Hummingbird" - Born Ruffians (March 6, DC9)
The band's indie rock sound isn't the most original, but its ramshackle, haphazard qualities make the group plenty endearing.

"Tandem Bikes" - The LK (March 8, House of Sweden)
The Swedish indie-pop maestros serve up delectable, danceable treats, and their appearance at the House of Sweden wins this month's award for Most Appropriate Venue.

"Some Kind of Death" - Birdlips (March 14, Jammin' Java)
The Charlottesville duo manages to take dark lyrical content and wrap it in an appealing indie-folk package.

"Pinetop's New Boogie Woogie" - Pinetop Perkins (March 15, Glen Echo Spanish Ballroom)
His name is synonomous with boogie-woogie piano, and even into his 90s he can still tickle the ivories with the best of them.

"The Silence Between Us" - Bob Mould (March 15, 9:30 club)
The alt-rock icon shows that his ability to write muscular, hook-filled rock songs hasn't faded, even after nearly three decades.

"State of Mental Health" - Leaving, TX (March 20, Jammin' Java)
This is some good old-fashioned roadhouse rock -- a galloping drumbeat, lots of twang and lyrics about drinkin' and being depressed.

"Keep You Happy" - Tift Merritt (March 21, Birchmere)
The alt-country starlet shows her softer side on this romantic ballad, which is highlighted by smooth organ and her smoother vocals.

"Tane Mahuta" - The Ruby Suns (March 21, Black Cat)
The New Zealand band delivers a campfire jam that's heavy on the percussion and multi-part harmonies.

"Sax Rohmer #1" - The Mountain Goats (March 22, Black Cat)
John Darnielle can always be counted on for punchy indie-folk tunes with emotive vocals and intriguing lyrics.

"Pitchforks" - The Kyle Sowashes (March 22, The Red & the Black)
Wimpy, catchy indie-pop by a singer who keeps reaching for notes he can't quite hit. What's not to like?

"Expired Planet" - Make a Rising (March 24, Velvet Lounge)
This Philly collective will tackle any genre out there -- classical, jazz, prog, folk, whatever -- and always manages to make something exciting and listenable.

"Oliver James" - Fleet Foxes (March 25, Black Cat)
My Morning Jacket fans should take note of this acoustic track featuring the same kind of confident, soaring vocals and smart melodies favored by MMJ singer Jim James.

"Mossy Nethers" - Mass Shivers (March 26, The Red & the Black)
This Chicago band has a sound that recalls some of the frenzied punk/noise/jazz experiments of old beginning-of-the-decade D.C. bands Black Eyes and Q and Not U.

"Baltimore" - Stephen Malkmus (March 28, 9:30 club)
The former Pavement frontman shows off his ever-impressive guitar skills on this noisy prog rock jam. New drummer Janet Weiss (ex-Sleater-Kinney) almost steals the show with her fluid playing.

By David Malitz  | February 29, 2008; 6:46 PM ET
Categories:  Music  
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Is the city closed down from March 9-13 or something? Los Lobos at the Birchmere and more improbably Davy Jones (Monkees fame) at the RamsHead Annapolis on March 9 look like winners to me.

Posted by: T.D. | March 2, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse

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