The past year brought major additions to Pittsburgh's venues: the massive CONSOL Energy Center, with arena-size concerts booked primarily by LiveNation, and North Side multi-stage complex Stage AE. The latter also brought in a promoter new to the city, the Ohio-based PromoWest Productions. Perhaps in response to the shifts in Pittsburgh's concert ecosystem, in 2011 we're already seeing new developments from existing area promoters.
Last Saturday, The Andy Warhol Museum presented Dean & Britta at the Carnegie Lecture Hall in Oakland, where those who could pry themselves free of the Steelers-Ravens game were treated to a dreamy set drawn from Dean Wareham's earlier indie-rock band, the seminal Galaxie 500.
The concert was the first in the Warhol's collaboration with the Carnegie Museum of Art. For the Warhol to take its adventurous programming to insular Oakland seems like clever outreach, since the Warhol's North Side location may present a hurdle to students and others new to the city. The next of these shows at the Carnegie Lecture Hall is Third Coast Percussion, on Jan. 29. The ensemble, co-presented with Pitt's Music on the Edge series, will perform works by Matthew Barnson, John Cage and Philippe Manoury.
Another promoter making some changes is Drusky Entertainment, which books local and touring acts at Altar Bar, Trib Total Media Amphitheatre and several other venues both local and scattered across the state. On New Year's Eve, Drusky's flagship venue unveiled a major renovation: the all-ages Strip District space Club Zoo.
This week, the company is celebrating its fifth anniversary with performances by many of the Pittsburgh bands it's championed over the last several years. The show, which starts at 8 p.m., Fri., Jan. 21, will feature the immensely entertaining Gene the Werewolf, the Triggers' nervy pop and 28 North's updated classic rock, as well as popular local bands of an earlier vintage -- Buzz Poets and Mercury.
Rounding out the bill are The Composure, Lovebettie, Bishop Clay, The Delaneys, Crossing Boundaries, Voodoo Babies and Burning Earth. Tickets are $5, with all proceeds benefiting the Make-a-Wish Foundation.