Critics' Picks: January 16 - 22 

Local shows by Stephane Wrembel, Peter Yarrow, Jenny Owen Youngs, Jason Anderson and Erin McKeown

[JAZZ] + THU., JAN. 17

If you've heard Stephane Wrembel before, it may have been in a context where you didn't recognize him: The French guitarist composed the theme to Woody Allen's Midnight in Paris. Before that, though, he was already accomplished in jazz-guitar circles, known for combining classical training with the Gypsy techniques he picked up from French Gypsy musicians. Tonight, he plays Thunderbird Café. Andy Mulkerin 8 p.m. 4023 Butler St., Lawrenceville. $20. 412-682-0177 or www.thunderbirdcafe.net

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[FOLK] + SAT., JAN. 19

If you were to name a handful of living legends of folk music, Peter Yarrow would no doubt be one; as a member of Peter, Paul and Mary, and a founder of the Newport Folk Festival, Yarrow was one of the luminaries of the '60s folk revival. Poet, musician and activist, Yarrow is both a friendly face and a great American. Tonight, he plays Carnegie Lecture Hall in Oakland as part of the Calliope series. Mustard's Retreat opens. AM 7:30 p.m. 4400 Forbes Ave., Oakland. $40-44. All ages. 412-361-1915 or www.calliopehouse.org


She's here so often, we might as well give her dual citizenship: Brooklyn's Jenny Owen Youngs returns tonight for a show at Brillobox. To be fair, her past two gigs here — opening for Tim Barry and then for Frank Turner — were solo, acoustic deals, and last year's An Unwavering Band of Light exhibits just how she's grown as a pop songwriter, benefiting from a great backing band. Tonight, she headlines; Paul Luc opens. AM 9:30 p.m. 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $12. 412-621-4900 or www.brillobox.net

click to enlarge PHOTO COURTESY OF J.M. LUNEAU
  • Photo courtesy of J.M. Luneau


Jason Anderson got his start on K Records as the frontman of the late-'90s band Wolf Colonel; he's also played with Phil Elverum and David Dondero, and taught school, but the project that brings him to Garfield Artworks tonight is his solo work. Anderson's lyrics-conscious songwriting is in line with the aforementioned outsider-folk heroes; tonight, his weapon of choice will be an electric piano. Kid Durango (acoustic) and Max Somerville open. AM 8 p.m. 4931 Penn Ave., Garfield. $5. 412-361-2262 or www.garfieldartworks.com

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Erin McKeown's latest, Manifestra, includes plenty of guests — the most unexpected of whom might be MSNBC's Rachel Maddow, who doesn't sing, but did co-write one of the tunes. McKeown has always been one to keep politics, and deep thinking, in her music. (In fact, she spent last year studying activism and music at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society.) Tonight, she plays Club Café, with Jenn Grant. AM 8 p.m. 56 S. 12th St., South Side. $12. 412-431-4950 or www.clubcafelive.com


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