Pittsburgh Pop Music

Buckwheat Zydeco

Don’t call Buckwheat Zydeco a geezer rocker. His music isn’t actually rock, though it rocks, and despite his age, he’s no geezer—he’s a squeezer. The man born 68 years ago as Stanley Dural, Jr. is an accordion superstar. Raised in a musical family on a Louisiana farm, Buckwheat was an organist for R&B/soul acts before switching to the squeezebox and getting so deeply into Creole-and-Cajun-based zydeco music that he named himself after it. A virtuoso of zydeco’s raucous, high-spirited sound,

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Neko Case

“Country noir”—that’s the genre Neko Case classifies herself as. It’s a genre that was years in the making. She’s contributed lead and backing vocals to numerous songs by indie rock band The New Pornographers while also displaying a decided twang on her alt country solo records. The “noir,” meanwhile, comes from her sometimes macabre lyrics, such as on “Star Witness.” That track is off 2006’s critically acclaimed album Fox Confessor Brings the Flood. Her most recent release, 2013’s The Worse

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Savion Glover and Jack DeJohnette

Not often does a jazz concert feature a dancer, but Savion Gr is special. Gr has been hailed for re-invigorating the art of tap, and he taps the way some people rap, laying down lightning-fast s full of twists and surprises. In the improvised piece above—done on a tiny stage, with no room for broader dance moves—it’s as if he is playing a drum solo with his feet. Now imagine him paired with an actual drummer. MCG Jazz is bringing

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RJD2

3) If you have ever watched the first five minutes of a Mad Men episode, then you have heard the music of Ramble Jon Krohn, who goes by RJD2. The hit AMC series begins with an instrumental version of “A Beautiful Mine.” The original version appears on Magnificent City, a studio album by rapper Aceyalone accompanied by RJD2, who produced the release. Krohn grew up not far from Pittsburgh—Columbus, Ohio—and has spent much of his professional life in Philaphia. He

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Bullet for My Valentine

Bullet for My Valentine are from Bridgend, Wales, close enough to the Welsh capital of Cardiff to be considered part of Cardiff’s rich music scene. Cardiff boasts the oldest record store in the world, Spillers Records, and the list goes on and on of bands associated with the area: Stereophonics and Funeral for a Friend, just to name a few. The music scene there has shifted to the kind of heavy metal/hard rock style that Bullet for My Valentine exemplifies.

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