Andy Grammer Keeps ‘Head Up’ at Mr. Smalls; Jevon Rushton Bangs Out Free Beats Downtown (CPs Tues., 7/1/14)

1) You can’t help but smile when you listen to a song by Andy Grammer. With every note, the singer-songwriter with the soaring voice makes it clear that he loves music and wants to spread the joy. Though his name may not immediately be recognizable, you’ve probably had one of his two hit singles—“Keep Your Head Up” and “Fine By Me”—stuck in your head at some point in the past few years. Both songs appeared on Grammer’s self-titled and widely acclaimed debut album, and the hype for his follow-up album, Magazines or Novels, due out Aug. 5, has been growing ever since the release of the advance single “Back Home.” Grammer will be at Mr. Smalls Funhouse with special guests Andrew Ripp, Brendan James, and Rachel Philipp for a 7:30 p.m. show. 400 Lincoln Ave., Millvale.

2) Pittsburgh native Jevon Rushton headlines today’s JazzLive weekly series, presented by BNY Mellon. Rushton has been playing drums since he could hold a stick, reportedly blowing away audiences since he was six. He attended the Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts School, where he studied under Roger Humphries, another Pittsburgh native and jazz-drumming luminary. In his brief career—he turns 30 July 10—Rushton has received multiple awards and performed with the likes of Kirk Franklin, Sean Jones, and Dwayne Dolphin. He will be performing at 5 p.m. at the Agnes Katz Plaza. Free. Penn Avenue and 7th Street., Cultural District.

3) The Pirates are making a run for the top of the NL Central in the weeks leading up to the All-Star break. The visiting Arizona Diamondbacks, who currently occupy the basement of the NL West, should provide some good target practice for the Battlin’ Bucs. The two teams begin a three-game series tonight; first pitch is at 7:05 p.m. 115 Federal St., North Shore.

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Daniel J. Dombrowski

Daniel J. Dombrowski is a freelance writer and editor living and working in Pittsburgh, Pa.

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