• Whether you're a hardcore Bluegrass fan or just someone who owns the O Brother soundtrack and wants to know more, the “Bluegrass Music: What, Who, When, Where, Why” series at Covington’s Behringer-Crawford Museum sounds like an entertaining and insightful program. The four-part series is hosted by local Bluegrass hero Katie Laur, who will discuss everything you ever wanted to know about the music, from its roots and origins to its influence and current statewww.bcmuseum.org.
• Finding original live music in suburban Cincinnati can sometimes be a bit like finding a liberal at a Tea Party rally. But local music booster organizations CincySounds and the All Night Party are looking to change that, booking local Indie bands at “unconventional” venues (i.e. not the Northside Tavern or Southgate House). On Saturday they’ll bring their “Indie invasion” to Silverton, presenting Cash Flagg and Koala Fires at Play By Play (which, to be fair, isn’t the typical cover band/DJ suburban club but actually features original music frequently). CincySounds and the All Night Party are using this initiative to hopefully get a foot in the door of other events often dominated by cover acts, such as neighborhood festivals.
• Longtime friends and singer/songwriters Chris Collier, Mary Kroner and Lynn Herman will perform together for the first time in more than 15 years Saturday at the North Presbyterian Church in Northside at 7:30 p.m. to raise funds for Haitian earthquake relief. For the show (dubbed the “One Stop Northside Tour”), the three will perform “in the round” and accompany each other on several songs.
• The University of Cincinnati’s prestigious College-Conservatory of Music is kicking off its Jazz department’s spring season this Sunday at Corbett Auditorium with “A Tribute to Stan Kenton.” The 4 p.m. concert features the school’s Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Lab Band, as well as guest artists Mary Ellen Tanner and John Von Ohlen, the legendary local Jazz drummer and CEA Hall of Famer who spent some time in Kenton’s band early in his career. CCM has also announced that this season will be the last for Director of Jazz Studies Rick VanMatre. The local Jazz musician/educator is retiring after 30 years at the school (27 in his current position). For tickets and a look at the rest of the season, go to www.ccm.ud.edu.
• In other CCM news, the school’s Lonely Instruments for Needy Kids (LINKS) program — which provides refurbished instruments for students who desire to study music — will host “Collection Days” this weekend. Those with instruments (new or used) to donate to the “recycling program” can drop them off at Joseph-Beth Booksellers in Hyde Park Saturday (10 a.m.-5 p.m.) and Sunday (noon-5 p.m.). If you can’t make it this time, instruments are accepted at local Buddy Roger’s Music Stores at any time.
CONTACT MIKE BREEN: firstname.lastname@example.org