The Weekender, Jan. 4-6: Ease on into 2019 with some low-pressure weekend fun

Sam Chase and Yuri Trusty of Rotating Taps. Photo by Cara Pelletier.

Ah, 2019. Drink it in. It’s the first weekend that isn’t in the midst of a very long holiday season, however, so we understand if you want to just take it easy. Start your year off with some relaxing entertainment this weekend in Bangor, including on Friday, when The Bill Barnes Trio is at Nocturnem Drafthaus, Adam Babcock is at the Sea Dog, and there’s night one of two nights of improv shows at 51 Main St., Penobscot Theatre’s workshop space, featuring performers from Improv Acadia, set for 8 p.m. both Friday and Saturday. On Saturday in Bangor, songwriters Sam Chase and Yuri Trusty perform at Nocturnem, Him & Her at the Sea Dog, the Scolded Dogs are at Paddy Murphy’s, and there’s a local punk show at the Downunder Club at Seasons featuring Burden, Sick Mind and War Criminal. 

Fremont Street String Band at Fogtown Brewing in Ellsworth, during warmer weather. Photo by Emily Burnham.

In Ellsworth this weekend, it’s Fogtown Brewing’s first anniversary at their cozy and cool Ellsworth brewery, and there’s a party there on Friday featuring lots of great local bands including the Fremont Street String Band, Beach Trash and Curtis Russet. Also on Friday in Ellsworth, Maine’s number one comedian Bob Marley does an encore show at the Grand Theatre at 7 p.m.

On Friday in Portland, it’s First Friday Art Walk night. There’s also 90s hip hop favorite Ja Rule with local guests Stl Gld and B. Aull at Aura; there’s more local hip hop with Wazo Daveed, Dre Armani and Kid Angel at Portland House of Music; local rock bands Drivetrain, Cruel Miracle and Cryptid play at Geno’s; and there’s a night of local experimental music and poetry, including Dan Knudsen, the Asthmatic, 3D Jet Scooter, the Veasies, Shea Mowat and Glade Swope. On Saturday, there are two showings of a “Rocky Horror Picture Show” shadow cast at 8 and 11 p.m. at One Longfellow Square; Janaesound and Gang of Thieves are at Bayside Bowl; there’s a Pink Floyd tribute night at Portland House of Music; there’s local music from Footings, EDT, Kafari and LaLa at the Apohadion; and Black Box Recorder, Former Life, Scott Saints and the True Believers and Iron Dynamite are at Geno’s.

There are lots of great movies to see this weekend, in theaters statewide. In addition to already-opened blockbusters like “Aquaman” and “Mary Poppins Returns,” at Bangor Mall Cinemas, the critically acclaimed “Vice” and “Mary Queen of Scots” hit the screen, and at the Grand Theatre in Ellsworth on Saturday, there’s an Alfred Hitchcock marathon, with “Dial M for Murder” at 1 p.m., “Rear Window” at 4 p.m. and “Psycho” at 7 p.m.; each screening is $5. On TV, just about every broadcast network sitcom returns after winter break, so if you were really missing season 97 of “The Big Bang Theory,” don’t worry: it’s back. On Sunday, the Golden Globes are set for 8 p.m. on NBC, so if you love making fun of celebrities, put on your PJs, pop yourself some popcorn and let the snark fly. Or maybe that’s just what I’ll be doing.

Emily Burnham

About Emily Burnham

Emily Burnham is a Maine native, UMaine graduate, proud Bangorian and a writer for the Bangor Daily News, where she's worked since 2004. She reports on everything from local bands to local food to all the cool things going on in the Greater Bangor area. In her quest for stories, she's seen countless concerts and plays, been lobster fishing, interviewed celebrities, hung out with water buffalo and played in a ukulele orchestra. She's interested in everything that happens in Maine.