Yr. Weekend, Pt. 3: IFest (Last Day!) + Omotai + Lions of Tsavo + The 71’s + More

Not quite as much going on today (that is, Sunday, May 8th), but there’s still some good stuff happening that’s worth checking out…

For one thing, it’s the final day of this year’s Houston International Festival over in Downtown, and today features probably the bulk of my personal favorite local heroes that happen to be playing this year. Awesomely quirky indie-folk-country guys Buxton are playing, as are Lucas Gorham‘s Grandfather Child, which I love, and Tyagaraja, whom I still need to check out live.

On top of that, one of today’s headliners is Lucinda Williams, and I can’t help but love the lady behind one of my favorite songs ever, “Jackson”.

If you’re into things a wee bit on the heavier side, though, there’s always Fitz, where a combined metal/hardcore bill’s supposed to be happening. The band I’d look forward to most would definitely be Omotai — they’ve consistently impressed me with their heavy-as-fuck but still unpretentious and laidback sound, and I can’t say enough good things about ’em.

It looks like drummer Anthony Vallejo‘s going to be doing double-duty tonight, too, since I’m fairly sure Dissent is his “old” band, the one he was/is(?) in before Omotai. And hey, I’m told Austinites Lions of Tsavo are pretty epic in the doom-metal department, too.

Now, I’ll admit to being skeptical about the whole “Texas Buzz” series of shows down at The Scout Bar in Clear Lake; there’s a snarky, mean-spirited part of me that wants to snicker and say, “Really? You’ve got who playing, again? And just when do they get played on The Buzz? And by ‘when,’ I mean ever?”

But hell, I can’t judge, not really — not as long as they’ve got good bands playing, anyway, And tonight they’ve got The 71’s, who won me over a while back in spite of some serious reservations going on. They’re smart and melodic, and they make no bones about the fact that, yeah, they’re pretty much a radio-friendly alternarock band.

That’s the bulk of what looks cool to me, but for completeness’ sake, here’s the “official” list:

Houston International Festival, featuring Joe Ely Reunion Band with Bobby Keys, J. Paul Jr. & the Zydeco Nubreeds, Jud Johnson Band, Riyaaz Qawwali, Norma Zenteno Band, Guillermo Serpas, Red Baraat, Cookie Joe’s Dancin’ School, Rahim Alhaj and Little Earth Orchestra, Oriental Arts Dancers, ConeXao, Koumanke’le’ African Dancers, Lucinda Williams, Bollywood Blast, Leroy Thomas & the Zydeco Roadrunners, Buxton, Los Guerreros de la Musica, Audio Telepathy, Cuadro La Tempestad Flamenco Company, Nritya School of Indian Dance, Houston Traditional Chinese Music Group, Qantara Dance Company, USA Chen Tai Chi Federation, Grandfather Child, Mariachi MECA, Haraka, Sri Natraj Bollywood Dancers, Houston Shaolin Kung Fu Academy, Nappi Nai Indian Dance Troupe, Urban Gypsy, Curtis Poullard & the Creole Zydeco Band, Tyagaraja, Danza Azteca Teokalli, Garifuna, & more @ Downtown Houston
Lions of Tsavo/Dissent/Omotai/Cog Melter @ Fitzgerald’s
57th Annual Texas Music Festival Village Fair & BBQ Cook-Off Battle of the Bands, featuring six local bands @ Walter Hall Park (League City)
The Texas Buzz, featuring The 71’s, 20/20, & Sky Lounge @ The Scout Bar (Clear Lake)

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