Shows of the Week: Angélique Kidjo Sings David Byrne Better Than David Byrne

What to see and what to hear.


The nervy, intensely funky compositions on Talking Heads’ 1980 classic Remain in Light drew strongly from West African music. Benin’s Angélique Kidjo, an actual West African known for her cosmopolitan approach to pop, is the perfect artist to pay tribute to the album in its entirety. She sounds much more at ease than the perennially panicked David Byrne did when singing these songs, but the music’s braininess and twitchiness remains, and it rivals actual Talking Head Jerry Harrison’s Remain in Light tour—coming to Crystal Ballroom on May 17—as the best touring Heads tribute. Roseland Theater, 8 NW 6th Ave., 971-230-0033, 8 pm. $35. 21+.


Ambrose Akinmusire is one of the best trumpeters in the world and will likely be remembered as the leading light of his generation of jazz musicians. Though the 40-year-old Bay Area native records for venerable Blue Note Records, he’s far from a traditionalist, with a fiery, intensely physical style and a penchant for ambitious concept albums with sociopolitical themes. Pianist Gerald Clayton will accompany him for this performance. The Old Church Concert Hall, 1422 SW 11th Ave., 503-222-2031, 7 pm. $39.75. All ages.


A lot of left-field hip-hop claims or wants to expand your horizons or blow your mind wide open, but it’s rare to find an act as truly confounding and challenging as Seattle’s Shabazz Palaces. Led by the stern, bearded, mysterious Palaceer Lazaro—aka veteran rapper Ishmael “Butterfly” Butler of Digable Planets—Shabazz Palaces approaches rap with an avant-jazz sensibility and ample use of African instruments. Support comes from prolific poet-rapper-performer Camae Ayewa, aka Moor Mother. Alberta Rose Theatre, 3000 NE Alberta St., 503-719-6055, 8 pm. $35. Minors allowed when accompanied by a parent or guardian.

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