The Best Concerts in Houston This Weekend: JD McPherson, Drew Ireland Benefit, etc.
Tickets are already getting scarce for one JD McPherson, who is rapidly rising out of obscurity via Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. McPherson came by his bopping R&B/rockabilly sound honestly, by studying vintage labels such as Vee-Jay and Specialty, and then working his love of the Pixies, the Smiths, the Clash, and even Wu-Tang Clan into the fine-print details.
The results will be released on his Rounder debut, Signs & Signifiers, in April. Not long ago the Houston Press happened to be in nearby record shop Sig's Lagoon -- where tickets might still be available -- and owner Tomas Escalante told us, "this will be one of those shows everybody says they were there but only a few people really were." CHRIS GRAY
Houston native/musician Drew Ireland is currently volunteering in Kryzhopil, a small village in the Ukraine, teaching young kids English as a second language. Ireland is need of updated supplies, and some of his friends here in the Bayou City are putting on a show to help him out. The benefit is headed up by Venomous Maximus and Weird Party, and features reunion sets by Fight Pretty and Bowel, with Bury the Crown added in for good measure.
The cover charge is $10, with all the cash going to Ireland's cause. When the show was initially announced, an outpouring of donations for Ireland's class came from all over Texas, and hopefully Saturday's show will help out some needy kids thousands of miles away. CRAIG HLAVATY
McGonigel's Mucky Duck, March 2
You all know Mike Doughty as the lead singer of quirky '90s rockers Soul Coughing ("Super Bon Bon," "Circles"), but since 2000 he has been a solid touring solo act, releasing a smattering of electrified folk EPs and full-lengths.
His first solo stab, 1996's Skittish, seems to the template for most of the stuff that cats like Jack Johnson and others would take to the bank. Doughty has songs in the hundreds, so his setlists for any given gig are like snowflakes. Let's hope he plays "Busting Up a Starbucks". CRAIG HLAVATY
813 St. Emanuel, Houston, TX