The Columbus Jazz Orchestra closes its summer JazZoo series at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium Friday, Aug. 16.

The Columbus Jazz Orchestra closes its summer JazZoo series at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium Friday, Aug. 16.

"Blues at the Zoo" features the CJO and guest guitarist Sean Carney, the local blues master, melding close cousins jazz and blues in rip-roaring fashion. The Winchester Steel Co., Canal Winchester High School's steel drum band, opens the show.

Adult tickets are $29 in ad-vance, $35 day-of, with discounts for CJO and zoo members. Students' tickets are $15. All tickets include zoo admission for the day.


Perhaps it doesn't surprise folks, nearly 20 years since the band's first hit, that Rusted Root is from Pittsburgh, despite the collective's arty, esoteric, cosmopolitan offerings not necessarily meshing with the well-established blue-collar mentality of its hometown.

Since 1994's Send Me On My Way (Ecstacy and Martyr as well, all from When I Woke) made a sizable dent in the then-heady world of college or alternative rock, Rusted Root has scored hits and misses. In more recent years, it's been active only intermittently as other endeavors have taken precedence.

But the band, led by Michael Glabicki, still makes effervescent pop-soul with world beat underpinnings, laden with smart and cerebral subject matter.

Rusted Root, with opener Angela Perley & The Howlin' Moons, plays the city of Columbus' Rhythm on the River free concert series Friday, Aug. 16. Visit

Austin-Texas quintet Ancient VVisdom is sort of like the "dark fantasy" of post-modern heavy rock.

The band's compelling lyrical tapestries revel in the occult and the like, but back off the heavy stuff musically, augmenting down-tuned riffing with acoustic guitars and vocals which are actually sung.

Ancient VVisdom shares the Double Happiness stage with The Saint James Society and American Werewolves Saturday, Aug. 17. Tickets are $10. Visit

Inspired equally by classic rockers such as Led Zeppelin and modern takes on riff-rock like White Stripes, SoCal trio Beware of Darkness walks the road that leads both to good-time dive bars and the philosopher's seat.

Vocalist/guitarist Kyle Nicolaides, drummer Tony Cupito and bassist Daniel Curico recently released their first full-length, Orthodox, and are out on the road in support, with a stop planned Sunday, Aug. 18, at The Basement. Tickets are $5. Visit

A joyful amalgam of sequenced synths and beats and raucous guitar and drum work, culminating in elaborate and demented fun? Heck yeah, The Octopus Project kind of reminds The Beat of Devo.

Trippy and cartoonish pop, often rendered without vocals, is the hallmark of this Texas outfit, and is in full effect on its fifth record, Fever Forms.

A new record has The Octopus Project out on the road, including a Monday, Aug. 19, date at Kobo. Tickets are $9.99/$12.


The three teen brothers in Missouri's Radkey couldn't get enough of their father's records growing up, so they formed a band that would continue the punk tradition, garnering inspiration from bands ranging from The Who through Misfits and Fishbone.

Dee, Isaiah and Solomon Radkey are young enough to push the tempo and 'tude all night long, something they plan to do Tuesday, Aug. 20, at the Rumba Cafe.

Tickets are $4.99/$7. Visit

At the forefront of the funk-soul-R&B-rock revival is Vintage Trouble, which has earned the added benefits of opening for The Who on its recent tour and sharing a London stage with none other than the Rolling Stones. Yep, sometimes buzz is for real.

The fellas aren't shy, and that's a good thing -- ain't no reason to back away from the kind of rollicking good time the quartet can cook up. Top it off with Ty Taylor's singing, which calls to mind the likes of Wilson Pickett, Joe Tex and Edwin Starr, and you've got a tasty treat. Dig the band's new The Bomb Shelter Sessions, and brand-new single Pelvis Pusher, if you have doubts.

Vintage Trouble plays the A&R Music Bar Wednesday, Aug. 21. Tickets are $15. Visit

Philadelphia-area rockers Circa Survive offer up vivid modern rock in the mold of Anberlin, The Receiving End of Sirens or Saosin -- indeed, CS singer Anthony Green was a founding member of Saosin.

The quintet's musical intensity is belied by its on-stage humor, in particular courtesy the capricious Green.

We mention this because Circa Survive will be in concert Wednesday, Aug. 21, at the Newport Music Hall. Ease the Medic and afortiori open.

Tickets are $20. Visit

As young "pop" musicians break down instrumentation preconceptions, it becomes less and less unusual to see a singer-songwriter joined by a lone cellist.

And then there's Christopher Bell, who is a young singer-songwriter accompanying himself on the cello, often played like a guitar, strapped and slung, strummed and slapped.

He augments this with loops of sound from choirs to orchestras to marching bands, at the tap of his foot.

Touring in support of his self-titled debut CD, Bell plays Kafe Kerouac Thursday, Aug. 22. The free show also includes opener Jeff Tobin. Visit

The Beat imagines you'll have a tough time topping the amount of youthful exuberance to be found Thursday, Aug. 22, at the Newport Music Hall.

Dig the bill, which includes We the Kings (Check Yes Juliet), Breathe Carol-ina (Blackout), The Ready Set (Love Like Woe) and T. Mills (Lightweight).

Tickets are $22/ $25. Visit