The 31st Annual Gathering of Nations is upon us. This congregation of Native peoples, artists and entertainers starts on Thursday, but the events hyped here happen on Friday, April 25, and Saturday, April 26. Within those two days, 35 entertainers and 60 acts perform at four venues: Stage 49 (1414 University SE), GON Arena and two strolling powwow alleys. Even hitting the highlights is challenging, but two shouldn’t-miss performances are Canadian/Stó:lō singer Inez Jasper and her informed pop and 16-year-old Burqueña Christy Bird, who’s known for singing “America the Beautiful” in Keres in that Super Bowl ad for Coca-Cola that spawned that ridiculous #SpeakAmerican hashtag. Scope the lineup in its entirety at bit.ly/GON2014. You can also catch Jasper at Sister (407 Central NW) on Saturday, April 26, at the haute fashion-themed Pink Party; this 21-plus soiree kicks off at 9pm, and presale tickets are $10.
Running concurrently with UNM Nizhoni Days and the Gathering of Nations, the inaugural UNSETTLE: Queer Indigenous Performance showcase at the UNM Student Union Building Ballroom C is a free, public event. And the acts quite simply rule. Happening from 7 to 10pm on Friday, April 25, this concert celebrates the validity of all voices and bodies. Add your voice to the chorus of respect, inclusion and creativity. Feast your eyes and ears on Navajo queer No Wave/post-punk/surf twosome Discotays and Diné youth community leader/KNIZ 90.1FM cofounder and microlabel deadrezkids’ founder Ryan Dennison. But that’s not all ... Kristin Gentry and Ryan Young—who are both fashion-minded photogs by day—and textile and jewelry artist Asdzanii Rae also make some noise. For more info or to get involved, visit bit.ly/UnsettleQIP or email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
I first experienced Joe West’s music in Austin, Texas. I’ve always been a fan of all genres—excepting smooth jazz and “new” country—and after a night of gothic/industrial debauchery, I stumbled onto his alt.country band Joe West and the Sinners. I only saw them play a handful of times, but I still know all the lyrics to “Judas Iscariot.” Have a similar experience at The Mine Shaft Tavern (2846 New Mexico 14, Los Cerrillos) on Friday, April 25, and Saturday, April 26, when West presents his Theater of Death: An Evening of Plays Inspired by theGrand Guignol of Paris. The metaphorical curtain rises at 8pm, and $15 tickets are available at the Mine Shaft and The Candyman (851 St. Michaels Drive) in Santa Fe. And if you miss it this weekend, it’s happening again from Thursday, May 1, through Saturday, May 3. For all the deets, visit joewestmusic.com.
If you’re up for a road trip to the Fe, consider revisiting the glory of the late ’90s and early aughts in the now. On Tuesday, April 29, jam out to PDX neo-psych/power pop outfit The Dandy Warhols and Los Angeleno (sometimes drone-y) psych-rock band The Warlocks at Santa Fe Sol (37 Fire Place). While the height of these bands’ notoriety may have waned, they’ve both managed to stick together and continue creating music for nigh upon two decades. That’s no small feat, and—let’s be honest—how many chances are you gonna get to belt out renditions of “Bohemian Like You” and “Shake the Dope Out” while accompanied by these bands ... live? This 21-plus concert starts at 7:30pm, and tickets are $27. Gather a roadworthy crew, and get your tickets via heathconcerts.org.