The Local Music Corner – Perry Persoff.

New Venues, New Summer Music Series, and New Projects…

Well goodness, we are just over halfway through the year 2023.  And big time into Summer.  I will pause while you supply your favorite “fly paper” jokes if you are reading this on a humid 90 degree day.  Of course, summer nights in the jacket-less 70 + degrees are pretty good.  And excellent for live music.  As we have lost many a beloved live music venue in recent years, it is exciting that we have experienced some new venues this year.  But they have tended to be of the large and corporate affiliated variety.  For example, MGM Music Hall @ Fenway’s capacity is around 5,000.  Roadrunner is around 2-3,000.  Those are not bad for seeing major artists.

But do they replace the small independent clubs we’ve lost where you could witness an artist or band that may be on the way up. An artist or band getting played on local radio but not the big syndicated stations.  An artist who you learned about from your super indie fan friend.  Or well-regarded artist who has been a part of your town for 30 years but never made the big time.

Stepping in to that void this past May was a 240 capacity deli, bar, and live music combo in…Cambridge?  No.  Somerville?  No.  Boston?  No.  Try Medford Square.  Could it be an homage to the nuggets on albums beyond the hit singles that the venue is called Deep Cuts?  I can only speculate on that.  Deep Cuts started as a Deli in Cambridge.  Then moved to Arlington and later West Medford.  Their current location where Carroll’s Restaurant lived for the last decade is where Deep Cuts has been able to open their vision for live performance (Carroll’s was a neighborhood establishment for six decades in a prior Medford location).  Deep Cuts books stand up comic shows as well as live bands.  I don’t see a whole lot of WUMB artists on their schedule yet, but keep an eye out as bookings develop.  For example, Becca Mancari will be there Sept 27th.  You may recognize Becca from her WUMB in-studio session a few years ago.  Deep Cuts is at 21 Main Street in Medford, MA.  Investigate them online at

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Meanwhile, there are some summer music series that might be under your radar:

One is in Medford at the Condon Hatch Shell.  If you drive on Rt 16 in Medford to the Rt 93 entrance, you pass the Condon Hatch Shell on your right.  They started having summer shows in June.  In addition to having a couple of traditional jazz shows with Annie & The Fur Trappers and Medford Family concerts, Say Darling and Tim Gearan will have peformances.  Say Darling – with Celia Woodsmith of Della Mae and former Girls, Guns & Glory guitar ace Chris Hersch – will be there on July 20th.  Tim Gearan & Band will close the series on August 31st.  Need details and showtimes?  Of course you do!  See  By the way, the City of Medford’s Free Condon Shell Summer Concert Series is free (it’s in the name).

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For those of you on the Cape, Monica Rizzio’s Vinegrass organization has a free music series going on at Truro Vineyards through the end of August.

And the 9th annual Vinegrass Music Festival lineup (October 1st) has now been announced:

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One of those beloved smaller live music venues that did not survive COVID manages to pop up now and then anyway.  As in a “Pop Up” venue?  It is ONCE Somerville.  Now and then, ONCE resurfaces to put on shows at Boynton Yards.  This is at 101 South Street in Somerville, a ten minute walk southeast of the Union Square green line subway.  Among the shows for this summer are two free mini-festivals on Saturdays July 29th and August 19th, both starting at 4:30pm.  The July 29th show opens with Casey Neil & Josh Kantor (yes, Josh Kantor the Fenway Park organist).  They will be followed by Field Day, Jill McCracken, the Womps, and…Barrence Whitfield.  The August 19th lineup opens with Trespasser, followed by Lonely Leesa & The Lost Cowboys, the Far Out, Moxie, and Hasaan Barclay.  I am not as familiar with the August 19th artists.  If you aren’t as well, it’s an excuse to find a new artist – or five – that you like.

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Out in Western MA, the Parlor Room and Signature Sounds are putting on a brief summer music series at Black Birch Vineyard in Hatfield – north of Northampton and west of Amherst.  Bookings include Jeffrey Foucault & Kris Delmhorst, Rani Arbo & Daisy Mayhem, and Twisted Pine.  Details and ticket information can be found at

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Back in my pre-Boston days there was a spate of time when all my favorite new bands seemed to be from Boston.  Sharing the top of that space for me was The Del Fuegos.  They are having – as far as I can tell – a one time reunion show this year.  It will be July 15th at the East Bridgewater Commercial Club in East Bridgewater, MA.  Sure enough, it will be the lineup of Dan Zanes, Warren Zanes, Woody Giessmann and Tom Lloyd.  The band was going to do a reunion show in 2022…but it had to be canceled.  Details at

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Finally, a couple of new projects from some Boston area veterans:

Chandler Travis has a new project/configuration he has been gigging around locally.  It’s a duo called The Buttercups (Chan & Rikki).  Chandler doesn’t play outside of the Cape all that often.  He was just at The Lizard Lounge on July 8th, sorry I missed that.  But keep watch on Chandler’s website to see if he ventures out off Cape again.

And last month Jim Infantino released a new recording now available digitally (to be released on vinyl in the Fall).  He recorded Utopia Revisted in Iceland with former Jim’s Big Ego mate Kurt Uenala.  Kurt was on the Don’t Get Smart album with Jim’s Big Ego, then left the group to focus on his own band. If you’ve been following Jim on his podcast, you may have heard Kurt on it last November.  That’s when Kurt suggested Jim record an Electronica style EP with him.  While Jim “balked” at the idea at first, he visited Kurt in Iceland for seven days.  They spent six of those days in the studio recording seven songs.  They did another song via remote with David Wilcox on guitars.  This may be the kicker: some of you know that Jim has written two books under the title The Wakeful Wanderer’s Guide. He says the eight songs on this recording are a companion piece to the books.

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And that’s all for now.  Place your bets on what I’ve forgotten or what comes up after I’ve posted this!  See you next time – maybe at the next WUMB member concert? – and enjoy your summer.

-Perry Persoff.