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Pop: hot ticket

By GINA VIVINETTO, Times Pop Music Critic
© St. Petersburg Times
published September 26, 2002


Untethered jazz

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If the smooth jazz sounds of Kenny G. and Boney James are what delight you, then stay the heck away from Sam Rivers' performance tonight.

Rivers, who turned 72 this week, is revered in free jazz circles and especially the New York loft scene for his untethered style and wild compositions. He gained new Tampa Bay area fans with his jaw-dropping performance at Tropical Heatwave '01.

A multi-instrumentalist, Rivers has played with everyone from Dizzy to Miles to B.B. King.

As a young man, Rivers attended Boston's conservatory of music and freaked out folks with his original musical sensibilities. After graduation, Rivers was a celebrated "new thing" (read: weird) artist on the legendary Blue Note label. Need proof? Check out Rivers' sizzling debut, Fuschia Swing Song.

Rivers later dove headfirst into improvisational material and there made his mark. He has often played both tenor and soprano sax, flute and piano during one gig or studio session.

Tonight's show, part of the outstanding -- but, way too sporadic -- EMIT new music series, features the Sam Rivers Trio of Rivers, bassist Doug Mathews and drummer Anthony Cole.

The Sam Rivers Trio performs at 8 tonight at the Palladium Theater, 253 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. $10 general. (727) 822-3590.

Sadie, Sadie, mysterious lady

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Sophie B. Hawkins is the sexually ambiguous singer who cooed Damn, I Wish I Was Your Lover. Was that sentiment sung to a man? A woman? The secret made it sizzle more.

Did you know Hawkins got her start as a percussionist for Bryan Ferry? The eccentric New Yorker studied ethnic percussion and used to sit behind the kit for a punk band.

Hawkins' songwriting is tossed in the adult pop ditch, but she takes things a step further with imaginative lyrics, funky beats, feedback, even some nasty words. (Her last album, Timbre, was released in both explicit and clean versions.)

Hawkins performs at 8:30 p.m. Saturday at Jannus Landing, 16 Second St. N, on Second Street between Central and First avenues N, St. Petersburg. $16-$18. (727) 896-2276.

Catch a band on the verge

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Did you see Florida's Dashboard Confessional accepting an award at last month's MTV Video Music Awards? Go, home team!

The Boca Raton emo punk band, headed by alterna-hunk Christopher Carraba, is now a darling of MTV2 with the hit Screaming Infidelities.

The band also did a quick stint opening for Weezer this summer and will be featured on a Road Rules soundtrack.

Fans may want to catch this show at Jannus Landing before it's too late. The mainstream seems to like these guys.

Dashboard Confessional performs 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at Jannus Landing, 16 Second St. N, on Second Street between Central and First avenues, St. Petersburg. $15.50. (727) 896-2276.

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