Critics' Picks: June 15 - 19 | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Critics' Picks: June 15 - 19 

Local shows by Snarky Puppy, Santigold, The Bynars, Childish Gambino and The Weeknd

  • Photo courtesy of Michal Garcia]

[JAZZ] + FRI., JUNE 15

Every summer, the city of Greensburg offers up a series of top-notch free concerts in St. Clair Park, the amphitheater on the edge of town. This year's Friday-night SummerSounds series kicked off at the beginning of June, and continues tonight with Snarky Puppy, a jazz-funk fusion band that's mostly from West Texas, but includes some New York City jazz vets. Later on down the line, catch Delta Rae (July 20) and the Ryan Montbleau Band (Aug. 24).Andy Mulkerin 7 p.m. 135 N. Maple Ave., Greensburg. Free. All ages. 724-838-4323 or

click to enlarge musicpicks_santigold_24.jpg

[POP] + SAT., JUNE 16

Philadelphia-born singer Santi White, better known by her stage name, Santigold, first earned her keep in the music business fronting the punk band Stiffed. After departing the punk scene, Santigold became synonymous with dance-inducing pop music, touring with artists such as Jay-Z, M.I.A. and the Beastie Boys. Her new album, Master Of My Make-Believe, brings forth another effort laced with enough synth to drive even the most stubborn wallflower to the dance floor. Santigold plays Stage AE tonight. Gregg Harrington 7:30 p.m. 400 North Shore Drive, North Side. $22/25. All ages. 412-229-5483 or

  • Photo courtesy of J.P. DiSciscio


The Bynars' first full-length came out last year, after the band issued a string of EPs. The Boston band plays upbeat, catchy pop — guitar-centered, but with a healthy dose of synthesizer helping out. Fun tunes, striking aesthetics and a sense of humor: What's not to love? They play the Smiling Moose tonight with locals The Beauregards and Steve Easter. AM 9 p.m. 1306 E. Carson St., South Side. Free. 412-431-4668 or


Donald Glover is a jack of all trades: He's written for the NBC comedy 30 Rock, currently plays Troy on the cult-hit sitcom Community, and raps under the pseudonym Childish Gambino. Releasing his first album, Sick Boi, in 2008, Childish Gambino has been on the rise. The hard work paid off, culminating with his first physical release, 2011's Camp, released by Glassnote Records. While Glover is known as a comedian, his musical performances are anything but a joke. Childish Gambino performs live at Stage AE tonight. GH 7 p.m. 400 North Shore Drive, North Side. $25-30. All ages. 412-229-5483 or

[R&B] + TUE., JUNE 19

Able Tesfaye — AKA The Weeknd, and appearing tonight at Mr. Small's — has been a shadowy, puzzling figure since releasing House of Balloons as a free download in early 2011. That first infectious and often luxuriant-sounding R&B record (he released two more later that year) features samples of Siouxsie and the Banshees and Beach House, and deals with the sex-and-partying themes you'll find in your run-of-the-mill radio slow jams. There is no celebratory warmth in the debauched, drug-fueled world of The Weeknd, though.  Sex and partying has seldom sounded this dirty, or this empty. Margaret Welsh 9 p.m. 400 Lincoln Ave., Millvale. $30. All ages. 412-821-4447 or


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