Most exciting concert of 2012? Stephin Merritt leads the Magnetic Fields as they launch their spring tour at Club Helsinki in Hudson with a show at 8pm on Tuesday, March 6. Tix are $30. Other new shows for the new year on the Helsinki calendar include the Brooklyn Qawwali Party at 9pm on Friday, February 17 ($15); Shearwater at 8pm on Sunday, February 26 ($10 in advance; $12 at the door); the Connor Kennedy Band at 9pm on Friday, March 2 ($10 in advance; $15 at the door).
Levon Helm and his band roll out of their Woodstock homes for a concert at the Calvin Theatre in Northampton at 8pm on Friday, March 2. Priced at $37.50, $47.50 and $57.50, tix go on sale on Friday (December 23).
Also in Northampton, Shelby Lynne makes a tour stop at the Iron Horse Music Hall at 7pm on Sunday, March 25.
Art Alexakis leads ’90s alt-rockers Everclear into Northern Lights in Clifton Park at 7:30pm. on Friday, January 13. Tix are $13 in advance; $15 at the door. Also coming up on the Clifton Park club’s calendar are 14-year-old Australian pop singer Cody Simpson at 7pm on Friday, February 10 ($20 in advance; $22 at the door); and We Came as Romans with Emmure, Blessthefall, Woe Is Me and the Color Morale at 7pm on Tuesday, April 10 ($18 in advance; $21 at the door).
The George Cole Quintet – described as “one part Django Reinhardt, one part Michael Buble” – lands at the Hudson Opera House in Hudson at 4pm on Sunday, January 8. Tix are $20.
CH-CH-CH-CHANGES: The holiday cabaret show by Rebecca Leigh & Friends – originally slated for Friday (December 23) at the Unicorn Theatre at the Berkshire Theatre Festival in Stockbridge has been cancelled. But it didn’t take long to find a replacement act. Instead, award-winning R&B singer-songwriter Matt Cusson will be performing at the theater at 8pm on Friday. Tix are $15.
DOUBLIN’ UP: Stand-up comedian John Pinette has added a second show at The Egg in Albany on Saturday, February 11. His Still Hungry tour was originally slated for a 7pm performance, but now he will also perform a second show at 9:30pm. Tix are $35.75.
CORRECTION: A Loss for Words with Koji, JB (of Bright and Early) and Brian Marquis will be at Valentine’s Music Hall in Albany (NOT at Northern Lights, as we incorrectly reported last week) at 7:30pm on Thursday, January 12 ($8 in advance; $10 at the door).
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Mike Doughty returns to The Linda in Albany, in support of his upcoming live 2-CD set, “The Question Jar Tour” and his memoir, “The Book of Drugs.”
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT, PART II: The 2012 winter/spring concert schedule for MASS MoCA in North Adams was announced – including shows by Justin Townes Earle, Zammuto, Catherine Russell, Delicate Steve, Christine Ohlman & Rebel Montez, McPeake, Jeff & Jane Hudson, Emily King and more, including everyone’s favorite animated psychedelic alien Gustafer Yellowgold.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT, PART III: The Yellowjackets will be playing the Freihofer Jazz Festival at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center in July.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT, PART IV: Montego Glover and hometown-boy-made-good Tony DeSare will be featured in a Philadelphia Orchestra pops concert at SPAC this summer.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT, PART V: Jazz-cabaret singer Wesla Whitfield and her husband-pianist Mike Greensill pay musical tribute to Peggy Lee with their cabaret show, “Fever: The Peggy Lee Songbook,” at SPAC’s Spa Little Theater in August.