1. After an unusually balmy, mostly calm week, I’m ready for the weekend. In Bangor on Friday, it’s the start of two things cool things: Public Humanities Day, which begins Friday night with a Pecha Kucha at 6:30 p.m. at Coespace, and the first weekend of the new Maine-set plat “Hair Frenzy” at Penobscot Theatre. Also, that night Waterfront Concerts brings country star Brad Paisley (pictured above) with guest Eric Paslay at the Cross Insurance Center. Later Friday night, there’s the Brad Hutchinson Project at Paddy Murphy’s, there’s jazz singer John Nowak at Nocturnem Drafthaus, there’s punk rock with the Crackhead Mikes, Tuesday Morning Wrestling and the Statuatories at the Central Gallery, and in Orono, there’s Stone Free at Woodman’s. On Saturday, there’s the Paul Bunyan Snowcross event all afternoon at Bass Park, and later that night there’s indie rock with Cool Tara, Buddusky, They Called Me Legion and Bummed Out at the Central Gallery, there’s the Junkyard Cats at Paddy’s, and there’s Magnetic North at Nocturnem. Just north, there’s The Cards at the Boomhouse in Old Town, there’s Mes Amis gypsy jazz at Black Bear Brewing in Orono, and the annual UMaine School of Performing Arts gala Broadway showcase is set for 7 p.m. at the Collins Center for the Arts.
2. I’m still sad I missed the Bowie tribute at the State Theatre last weekend. Have I mentioned that? I am. Anyway, in Portland Friday night, take your pick of either the smooth sounds at the Tribute 2 Yacht Rock night at Empire, the record release for Nick Perry’s Brass Tax with Caleb Orion and Push/Shove at Portland House of Music and Events, songwriters Sonya Kitchell and Sarah Hallie Richardson (pictured) at One Longfellow Square, or Erica Brown and the Bluegrass Connection at Salvage BBQ. There’s also Ancient Ocean backing short films by John Whitney, with guests Herbcraft, Sterile Garden and Sweetleaf and Herb, at the Space Gallery. Moving onto Saturday, Marianas Trench and Mainland are at Asylum, rockers Tigerman Woah and These Wild Plains are at Portland HOME, there’s some local punk with Nuclear Bootz, Mome, Seasonal Disorders, and Captain Martini and the Keystoners at Geno’s, and songwriter Travis James Humphreys is at Salvage. There’s also a lovely night of local music and performance at the Space Gallery, curated by former Oak and the Ax man Greg Jamie, featuring Samuel James, Wesley Hartley, Hi Tiger, Psychic Pictionary, Leaf Peeper, Kafari, The Asthmatic, Morgan Bouton, and id m theftable. On Sunday, the Chainsmokers are at Asylum, and Chris Bathgate and the February Ballet are at One Longfellow Square.
3. I like what’s going on on the Midcoast this weekend. I like it very much indeed. On Friday, the Unity College Center for the Performing Arts hosts The Ghost of Paul Revere, while in Rockland, there’s standup comedy at the Speakeasy with Paul Hunt and Ian Stuart, and there’s songwriter Sorcha Cribben-Merrill at Rock City Coffee. On Saturday, rockers the 220s are at the Speakeasy, and it’s storytelling night at Rock City with Midcoast Memory Theater, while up in Belfast, you can take your pick of either the New Vaudeville Revue, a night of comedy, poetry and music, at the Troy Howard Middle School, or the annual Snowed In Dance Party with DJs Matty T and Jason Keith at Three Tides and Marshall Wharf Brewing Company (pictured).
4. Speaking of the Midcoast, Knox County is full of fun stuff this weekend. For starts, it’s the first weekend of Camden Winterfest, which kicks off Saturday with an ice carving festival in downtown Camden, a snowboarding competition at the Camden Snow Bowl and a Polar Plunge into Camden Harbor. On Sunday, Rockland hosts the annual Pies on Parade, in which for one ticket price, you get samples of an ungodly amount of delicious pie in locations all over Rockland. Every year I want to go to this, and every year I don’t for some reason. I love pie. Who doesn’t love pie? Jerks. Only jerks do not love pie. You don’t love pie? What’s wrong with you? Get out of my blog. GET OUT.
5. There’s other random good stuff this weekend, too, like the wedding show Sunday at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor, good skiing all weekend at your favorite ski resort, events at the Camden Opera House, the Banff Film Festival at the Grand Theatre in Ellsworth… take your pick! Make your own decisions! I’m just the messenger.