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We'll help you plan your best summer yet with our annual roundup of can't miss events! Plus we've got a Face the Music interview with vocal powerhouse Josh Groban who is performing in Portland on 6/24. And as always, we'll help you have a terrific weekend with our hand-picked selection of events. Have fun out there!
Aimsel Ponti is a Content Producer at MaineToday.com and a music writer for MaineToday.com and the Portland Press Herald.
She has been obsessed with - and inspired by - music since she listened to Monkees records borrowed from the town library when she was six years old. She bought her first Rolling Stones record at a flea market when she was in 7th grade and discovered David Bowie a year later. She's a HUGE fan of the local music scene and covers it along with national musical happenings in her "Face the Music" column and with artist interviews that appear in print in the Portland Press Herald and online at Mainetoday.com. You'll also find her out and about absorbing live music like a sponge and roaming around local record shops and flea markets. Aimsel is also the host of Music from 207 on 98.9 WCLZ and appears monthly on the News Center Maine TV show “207” to talk about...music of course.
Kris Kristofferson, The Dustbowl Revival, Slaid Cleaves and Dwight Yoakam
Written by: Aimsel Ponti
8 p.m. Thursday. State Theatre, 609 Congress St., Portland, $35 to $70 reserved seating. statetheatreportland.com If it wasn't for Kris Kristofferson, we wouldn't have the song "Me and Bobby McGee," because he's the guy who wrote it. Kristofferson, now 80 years young, has a career that dates back decades and includes a whole bunch of songwriting, albums, tours and film roles, including 1976's "A Star Is Born," for which he won a Golden Globe. Here's a chance to see a certifiable living legend who is considered by many to be one of the greatest songwriters ever to walk among us mortals. Photo by Ash Newell
The Dustbowl Revival
8 p.m. Friday. Port City Music Hall, 509 Congress St., Portland, $12 in advance, $15 at the door, $30 preferred seating, 18-plus. portcitymusichall.com and 7:30 p.m. Saturday. The Strand Theatre, 345 Main St., Rockland, $15 in advance, $18 at the door. rocklandstrand.com If this show was a cocktail, you'd throw shots of funky rhythms, a brass section, fast-picking strings and red hot vocals into a shaker and have at it. The Dustbowl Revival is out of Venice Beach, California, and their suitcases will be packed with a ukulele, bass, drums, mandolin, fiddle, acoustic guitar, trombone and trumpet, with two sensational sets of pipes as carry-ons. Photo courtesy of the artist
7:30 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Johnson Hall, 280 Water St., Gardiner, $28. johnsonhall.org He's a poetic wordsmith born and raised right here in Maine. Folk singer-songwriter Slaid Cleaves relocated to Austin, Texas, several years ago but still pays us visits from time to time, including this weekend. Cleaves' discography dates back to the early '90s and is now more than a dozen albums long. His most recent is 2013's "Still Fighting the War," with the tracks "Hometown USA" and "Texas Love Song." Photo by Karen Cleaves
9 p.m. Sunday. Aura, 121 Center St., Portland, $49. auramaine.com He's a singer-songwriter and country music superstar with a discography that dates back three decades. Dwight Yoakam's hits include "Honky Tonk Man," "Streets of Bakersfield," "I Sang Dixie," "Guitars, Cadillacs" and "Little Sister," all in his signature style of honky-tonk country. You've likely also seen him on the silver screen in films including "Sling Blade," "Panic Room" and "Four Christmases." Yoakam's latest record is "Swimmin' Pools, Movie Stars..." Image courtesy of Warner Bros. Records