From the fiery fiddle of Amanda Shaw to the New Orleans funk of the Soul Rebels Brass Band to the welcome return of A New Personality, the 27th annual Tropical Heatwave promises to be a wild and eclectic ride.
CUBAN CLUB BALLROOM
6:15-7:20 p.m. Soulphonics The young, gifted Miss Ruby Velle and her ace male backing crew (the band recently relocated from Gainesville to Atlanta) return listeners to the golden era of R&B with sultry vocals, punchy horns and syncopated rhythms that hit right below the belt -- in the best way possible.
7:20-8:50 p.m. Atlas Soul This multi-ethnic eight-piece band, based in Boston, cobbles together a heady world-fusion that revolves around Middle Eastern and Mediterranean sounds. The band sings in English, Spanish, French, Italian Arabic and Hebrew, with male and female vocals.
9:10-10:20 p.m. The Blue Vipers of Brooklyn The Blue Vipers -- guitar/vocals, acoustic bass, washboard, trumpet and saxophone -- play old-timey jazz, swing and blues. Their songs are witty, bouncy and full of fun -- visions of flappers and men in straw-boater hats. The Blue Vipers are one of the most popular bands that busk in the New York subways.
10:40-11:40 p.m. Rocket 88 The rowdy Orlando rockabilly quintet formed in '92 and, following a lengthy hiatus, has returned to Sunshine State stages with its original lineup, punk-informed attitude and songs often set far above the clouds ("Supersonic Satellite)."
11:55 p.m.-1:10 a.m. Baye Kouyaté An authentic Malian griot and master of the talking drum performs with an eight-piece band. Read Eric Snider's profile.
CUBAN CLUB BANDSHELL
5:30-6:30 p.m. The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band This loopy trio features the Rev. Peyton on vocals, National steel guitar and harmonica, his wife Washboard Breezy on percussion and younger brother Jayne Peyton on kick drum and snare. The music is wild, bluesy and rockin'.
6:50-8 p.m. Mighty Lester Kudos to 'MNF for not burdening us with another Chicago-blues Strat-strangler. Mighty Lester and his eight-piece band play a hotwired, horn-heavy blend of jump-blues, Kansas City stomp, Stax soul and raucous swing.
8:20-9:40 p.m. Brave Combo The ace party band, a WMNF fave, returns for its third Heatwave. Over nearly three decades, Brave Combo has boldly mixed polka with barroom rock 'n' roll, klezmer, surf-rock, Tex-Mex conjunto, jazz, salsa and on and on.
10-11:20 p.m. Del Castillo Since forming in 2000, this sextet has become one of Austin's most acclaimed bands. Singing in mostly Spanish and a bit of English, the band effortlessly blends flamenco, rock, Latin, blues and world music with the main focus on the dueling acoustic, nylon-string guitar beauty of virtuosos Rick and Mark del Castillo.
11:40 p.m.-1:10 a.m. Gandalf Murphy and the Slambovian Circus of Dreams The band isn't as wacky as the name suggests. The suburban New York outfit brings plenty of melodic hooks to its folk-rock undercarriage but outfits it with psychedelic touches and bits of exotica. The songs have engrossing narratives and are sung with a rugged directness.
CUBAN CLUB CANTINA
6-7 p.m. The Oaks The Orlando band's blend of art-, folk- and post-rock -- with its ringing guitars, chiming vibraphone and gentle vocals -- gauzily soothes the ears. The band's lyrics are socially conscious, with an emphasis on humanitarian aid.
7:20-8:20 p.m. Hoots & Hellmouth Now there's a band name for ya. This Philadelphia neo-folk quartet -- two acoustic guitars, upright bass and mandolin and vocals -- brings plenty of indie-rock feistiness to its sets. And instrumental chops, too.
8:40-9:45 p.m. The Shackeltons The band has fans in high places. Rolling Stone: "Check out this wild-eyed fusion of Pixies and early White Stripes." Spin: "Shake up a pinch of the Pixies and a dose of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club." Some WMNFers were blown away by the The Shackeltons at SXSW and pushed for them to be booked at Heatwave.
10:05-11:40, p.m. Graham Parker The 57-year-old semi-legend has enjoyed a long and solid career as a kind of Elvis Costello understudy. Spawned from the British new wave, Parker has always had a penchant for American R&B, which has emerged in his music more and more as the years have gone by.
11:55 p.m.-1 a.m. Mojo Gurus Frontman Kevin Steele has landed both the Mojo Gurus and his former band, Roxx Gang, major label record deals over the years. The St. Pete blooze and countrified rock quartet's freshly minted disc, Let's Get Lit With ... The Mojo Gurus, came out last month and rocks with a moxie that would make Mick and Keef smile in approval.
EL PASAJE/LOUISIANA STAGE
5:50-6:55 p.m. The Zydepunks A compound word, Zydepunks, and it pretty much tells the story. Formed in New Orleans in 2004, the group -- which features two accordion players -- sprinkles in bits of klezmer, Celtic folk and other stuff for good measure.
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