The Head and the Heart Hit Stage AE; America Rides Into The Palace Theatre (CPs Fri., 5/30/14)

1) Stage AE plays host to a pair of indie bands this evening as folk-rock group The Head and the Heart plays with special guest Lucius. The Head and the Heart hails from Seattle where the members of the five-piece met and began collaborating through a series of open mic nights. Truly self-made indie darlings, they were selling out of homemade CDs in hand-sewn pouches before they finally answered the courting call of one of several competing labels in 2010. They have since released two studio albums. Lucius, a group out of Brooklyn with a somewhat more pop sound, is doing pretty well too, having been recently called “the best band you may not have heard yet” by Rolling Stone. 7 p.m. 400 North Shore Dr., North Shore.

2) Did you know that all three members of America grew up in England? The trio met in high school in London in the ’60s, all three the sons of British mothers and American military fathers. They took on the moniker “America” as a rather on-the-nose way of signaling their preferred national identities while playing clubs across the pond. The group will long be remembered for the iconic “A Horse with No Name,” still featured prominently in soundtracks for major TV shows and films like Breaking Bad and American Hustle—although the song represents only a tiny fraction of the band’s musical library, which spans 16 albums and five decades. Catch America tonight at The Palace Theatre. 8 p.m. 21 West Otterman St., Greensburg.

3) No, it’s not a luxury car commercial. It’s the entirety of Antonio Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons, a set of four violin concertos composed nearly 300 years ago in 1723. Some of the most enduring pieces of music in history will get an injection of young blood tonight at Heinz Hall as they are performed by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra with special guest Ye-Eun Choi, a 26-year-old Korean violin prodigy. Since debuting with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra at the age of 10, Ye-Eun has toured the world, playing throughout Asia and Europe and making her American debut in 2009 with Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. Tonight’s performance will feature The Four Seasons suite in full and, following a break, pieces by Mozart and Haydn. Two more performances are scheduled for Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon. 8 p.m. 600 Penn Ave., Cultural District.

4) Put on your dancing shoes and head over to the Cabaret at Theater Square for Salsa Fridays and Pittsburgh’s own Guaracha. Show up early to enjoy dinner before the curtain, and then get ready to burn off those calories when the band hits the stage. Guaracha has a reputation for bringing the latest and hottest in Latin dance music to Pittsburgh, and these musicians never disappoint, with a truly authentic sound and groove. 10:00 p.m. 655 Penn Ave., Cultural District.

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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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