Second City’s ‘Summer Blockbuster’ at O’Reilly; The Commonheart Plays South Park, littlegoodbad’s First Show (Fri., 8/25/17)

The cast of The Second City's Summer Blockbuster (l. to r.) Eve Krueger, Danny Catlow, Greg Ott, Adam Archer, Lauren Walker, and Alison Gates.

The cast of The Second City’s Summer Blockbuster (l. to r.) Eve Krueger, Danny Catlow, Greg Ott, Adam Archer, Lauren Walker, and Alison Gates.

1) “They’re baaack.” no we don’t mean the spirits from The Poltergeist films, we’re speaking of our friends from Chicago’s Second City Comedy Troupe. When it comes to comedy, The Second City is second to none. Founded in 1959, the Chicago-based company played a major role in developing and popularizing the modern form of improv comedy. (Its early members were pioneers of the art.) Since then the group has also created over 50 years’ worth of outstanding sketch comedy, while turning out a long list of famous “alumni” including John Belushi, Tina Fey, Amy Sedaris, Steve Carell, and Stephen Colbert, to name a few. you can catch some of their classic skits—along with new material—in the road-show revue performed by The Second City’s current touring company. The Second City’s Summer Blockbuster is brought to town by Pittsburgh Public Theater and it’s a chance to see top-notch comedy done by some of the nation’s up-and-coming stars. 8 p.m. tonight and 5:30 and 9 p.m. tomorrow. O’Reilly Theater, 621 Penn Ave., Cultural District. (MV, RH)

2) The Commonheart is one of the hottest bands on the local music scene. Led by frontman Clinton Clegg and his impressive rock/soul pipes, the band delivers inspiring performances. Strong guitar, rhythm, and horn sections along with harmonious background singers add to the aural delight. The Commonheart recently released their new album Grown and have been on a U.S. tour since April. This fall, they will be opening for JJ Grey & Mofro in multiple cities. You can catch them on their hometown stop at South Park. Opening is Telephone Line. This show is part of the Allegheny County Summer Concert Series. 7:30 p.m. South Park Amphitheater, 3700 Farmshow Dr., South Park Township. (RH)

3) In 2014 musician Rachel B (Rachel Borovik) decamped her Los Angeles address and moved to Pittsburgh. She said soon after, “I came to Pittsburgh on a cross-country tour and fell in love with the city and its supportive arts community. I packed my bags and moved about two months later. I am learning more and more to trust my gut and something told me to move here. It was a great decision!” Joining the Traverse City, Michigan native on the cross-country move was one of her musical collaborators Billy Castle, a multi-instrumentalist and producer, whom she met when they were both attending Berklee College of Music in Boston.

A versatile singer, songwriter and keyboardist, she touches on several different genres including pop, dance, soul, and a little touch of jazz. Now Rachel B is making another big change. She is dropping Rachel B as the band moniker and forming the group littlegoodbad (+ -) with multi-instrumentalists/producers Castle and Dinn Winnwood. She describes the new group “A soulful pop singer, punk drummer (Castle), and EDM producer (Winnwood) make up this group of musical misfits. The term “misfits” might be more comical here than reality based, as Borovik and Castle are very talented and have risen on the local and Midwest scenes over the last several years. The band’s first single “No Regrets,”about enjoying life in the moment, will drop on August 28. They will be releasing a new single every month. Fans can get these releases for free by signing up for the group’s mailing list. The new releases promise to be soulful pop rock with a good beat. You can see littlegoodbad (+ -) tonight in their very first show at Diesel Club Lounge. They will also be performing at the Thrival Music Festival in September. Also on the Diesel bill is DJ ColeBlooded, Pet Zebra, Hippy Swizzy and AHSE, The Last Drop, NVSV & Money Moo.
The event is hosted by Everett Banks. 7 p.m. 1601 E. Carson, St., South Side.

4) It’s Murder for Girls at Gooski’s in Polish Hill tonight. This punky, crunchy band is built upon the strong bass lines of bass guitarist Jonathan Bagamery, intense rhythmic drumming of Michele Dunlap, and dual guitar sound of Tammy Wallace and Stephanie Wallace and their harmonic, fast-paced vocals. Murder for Girls is active on the local scene and has drawn good crowds to their appearances at the Deutschtown Music Festival, RANT, and Ladyfest. Their latest release is All the Wishes. Look for the band to announce new dates soon. Also performing is Volcano Dogs and The Mount McKinleys. 10 p.m. 3117 Brereton St.

5) Murder at the Craft House: Who Killed Alan Stanford is the season opener for PICT Pittsburgh’s Classic Theater. Guests will be pressed to figure out the whodunit at this rousing reception and murder mystery event, held at Crafton’s historic Craft House, featuring many top PICT actors and Alan Stanford. All tickets include drinks, heavy hors d’oeuvres, entertainment, and dessert. Performances through August 27. 7:30 p.m. 8 Alice St., Crafton.

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Rick Handler

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