Somerville Local First


Somerville Live Music: Thief Thief Invades PA’s Lounge

Oct 10 2:30 pm

By Sam Coren

Thief Thief

Thief Thief

Fall is here and there’s definitely no shortage of great live music events in the ‘ville. This past weekend Jens Lekman did his Swedish pop musician thing at the Armory and thoroughly warmed up the castle for the upcoming Somerville Local First Harvest Fest. Before that, Honk! Festival fended off the rain with a New Orleans brass band that won Somervillians’ hearts called Young Fellaz. So where else can you catch some amazing live tunes in the next couple of weeks? Check out the listings below:

October 10th: Almost Blind (Precinct)

Providence’s Almost Blind will be cranking out emotionally charged punk in the same vein as Alkaline Trio and Against Me! this Monday night. They’ll be sharing the bill with other Rhode Islanders who are fall bit more onto the “experimental art rock” side of the fence:  The Universes, Txoka Txoka, and Portuguese American Nightclub

October 12th: Old New England Weather (PA’s Lounge)

With a band name like Old New England Weather you might be expecting depressing piano ballads to play on a windy, cold day. Fortunately that’s not the case. ONEW offer foot tapping headphone folk for music lovers who dig the likes of Harry Nilson and Dylan’s The Basement Tapes.

October 13th: The Good Lovelies (Johnny D’s)

Need some sunshine in your life? Pop on by Johnny D’s Thursday and catch the Good Lovelies at 7:30. Hailing from Canada, this JUNO award-winning all female trio will woo you with their three part harmonies and unique brand of swingy folk pop.


October 15th – Thief Thief (PA’s Lounge)

Should you get sold out of session 2 of SLF’s party of the year, Harvest Fest, you can cut your losses at PA’s lounge with Thief Thief. This experimental rock duo has been winning over droves of Marnie Stern and Hella fans with their massive wall of guitar sound and insane polyrhythms.

wrong answer! by thief thief


October 19th – The New Highway Hymnal with Karen Zanes (Precinct)

The New Highway Hymnal is perhaps one of the area’s best unsigned rock bands. The Haverill based group has been cranking out dark and twisted surf influenced psych rock since 2009. Opening duties will be handled by Karen Zanes, a local artist who’s making a name for herself with her trademark one woman shoegaze band sound. You might know her from The Freeways. With a glassy voice and minimalist reverb drenched guitar she’s sure to quickly grow on fans of Dean & Britta and Beach House.


October 21th: Oh! Pears with Dad Rocks and Arms & Sleepers (PA’s Lounge)

What’s not to love about the kind of live show where there’s more musicians than room on the stage? Oh! Pears is the new project of Corey Duncan, former guitarist of Pattern Is Movement. The Philly based chamber pop group features two violas, a violin, two cellos, four guitars, two drum situations, a flute, a trumpet, lots of vocals, and clapping. Be sure to pick up their new EP on band camp if you can’t get enough of St. Vincent or Beiruit.  Don’t miss Danish openers Dad Rocks! for more displays of awesome musicianship.


Somerville Live Music: New Music Venue Radio To Open Oct 7th

Sep 27 2:47 pm

By Sam Coren

The Organ Beats

Retro-rockers The Organ Beats will be playing opening night at Radio.

Word round the ‘Ville has spread. A new live music venue will be opening its doors in Union Square on October 7th. Radio, a new rock club and restaurant, will occupy the space that was once the Club Choices at 379 Somerville Ave. You may be familiar with Radio’s owners, Aimee McGrath and Josh Banville, the bar and booking manager of Davis Square’s Rosebud. They’ll be joined by Chef Jim Seery and Ashley Willard of Boston Band Crush who will be taking care of food and music booking duties.

For those live music lovers on a budget, Willard told the Phoenix that they want Radio to be, “a place where people can come hang out and discover new bands without breaking the bank.” Willard went on to indicate that most shows will have a $5 cover. What’s not to love? Hopefully this helps facilitate the ever-growing Somerville music community. Three, cheers (and beers) for some homegrown talent!

Be sure to check out Radio’s first batch of listings below for October and November:

Friday, Oct. 7

The Rationales with The Organ Beats, John Powhida International Airport, and one more TBA

Saturday, Oct. 8:

BrownBoot, with AM Stereo, Watts and The Dirty Truckers.


Sunday, Oct. 9:

Dinner With the Band: Erin Harpe.

According to Willard, this will be a free show accompanied with a dinner menu Chef Jim will create inspired by the band’s music.

Saturday, Oct. 15:

Parlour Bells with Sarah RabDAU & Self-Employed Assassin, Garvy J, and  Eldridge Rodriguez


Sunday, Oct. 16:

Nina Violet with Willy Maso, and Tallahassee


Friday, Oct. 28:

Halloween with local bands covering The B-52s, Pat Benatar, INXS, James Brown


Saturday, Nov. 5:

Guillermo Sexo with Age Rings,  Marconi, and The Future Everybody

Sunday, Nov. 6:

The Fagettes with Thick Shakes, and more TBA

Friday, Nov. 11:

Mitten with Lovewhip, Streight Angular, and SPF 5000

Saturday, Nov. 19:

Mellow Bravo with InAeona, Rule, and Cask Mouse


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Somerville Live Music: The Return of The New England Pop Music Festival

Sep 12 9:54 am

By Sam Coren

Catch A Pony For My Birthday at The New England Pop Music Festival

Summer’s unofficial close came last week after the grills went out on Labor Day BBQs and Davis Square started booming once again with the college crowd. But if you dread making the trek to Allston for your live tunes because of a now unusable Green Line and 66 bus, don’t fret. There’s plenty of good shows to check out right here in the ‘ville. Here’s what’s shaking:

September 15-17 th:  New England Pop Music festival (Rosebud)

After the Abbey Lounge shut its doors in 2008, the New England Pop Music Festival went on a break. This 3-night festival showcasing a variety of local music from folksy singer-songwriters to head-shaking power pop rockers will have its much anticipated return at Rosebud in Davis Square. The action is happening this week from September 15-17th. So what should you expect from this new edition of the fest? 18 bands (many right from the neighborhood!) for $10 a night. Bands start playing at 7 PM, so come out early! Here are some notable acts playing this year:

Somerville’s Butterknife will be bringing their unique brand of alternative power pop to the ‘bud. According to local music blog Boston Band Crush, “We’d wager that there aren’t many bands that have as much fun playing live as these gentlemen and that joy is infectious. If you ska kiddies couldn’t get enough silly dancing in with The English Beat last week at Johnny D’s then don’t miss Allston’s The Pomps. Even those of you who say ska is “so over” can’t resist this Allston band’s fierce energy. If you’ve got a soft spot for cutesy boy/girl vocal harmonies and Wurlitzers you should make it a point to see A Pony For My Birthday. With a name like that who can stop themselves from feeling all warm and fuzzy.

September 15th:  Rajko Orchestra (Johnny D’s)

Raise your hand if you’ve heard world-class  Hungarian Gypsy music performed live? Bueller…..Buelller…..? Alright, well there’s a first time for everything. For those of you who need to fill that void, go see Rajko, an eight member orchestra with traditional instruments producing the “Authentic Gypsy music” sound of the 19th and 20th Centuries.


September 17: A Bit Much with TonyBear (PA’s Lounge)

Broken hearted? Good thing A Bit Much and TonyBear are playing PA’s lounge together. Their catchy brand of feel good powerpop will pick you right up as they duke out a battle between old vs. young.

September 20th: Electric Heaters, The Big Wipeout, Tsunami of Sound (Surf Rock) (Johnny D’s)

Fun fact:  Dick Dale, the prolific surf guitarist of the 1960’s was actually from Quincy, Mass. and never learned how to surf. Keep the Massachusetts surf rock pride going and boogie down to Johnny D’s for a weeknight of surf rock fun from 3 Mass-based acts.

September 20th: Something Sneaky with War Presidents (Precinct)

Newcomers Something Sneaky will be bringing Pixies-influenced riffs up from the South Shore. War Presidents will remind you of the time Ben Folds was playing in The Ben Folds Five. If the afterglow of New England Powerpop Fest wears off, head on over to Precinct and catch these local alt-rockers smooth out that chip on your shoulder.


Somerville Live Music: The English Beat, Dub Apocalypse, & Sea Monsters

Aug 30 10:56 am

Reports Photo: Hank Hauptmann

Can you hear the sound of a hundred U-Hauls putting around the neighborhood? It’s back to school time in the ‘ville and prime moving time for the immediate Boston-metro area. But once you’re done lugging all your personal belongings up many flights of stairs, why not take a well deserved music break?

Here are a few fantastic live music acts you can catch around town in the next couple of weeks:

September 3rd: Jeffery Broussard & The Creole Cowboys [7pm] (Johnny D’s)

Sorry Weird Al fans, but only the funky, soulful bayou sounds of tried and true Creole Zydeco can make the accordion a “cool” instrument. Give your earbuds the treat of authentic Louisiana Zydeco with one of the best, Jeffery Broussard & The Creole Cowboys.

September 3rd: Fat History Month / Reports (PA’s Lounge)

Nothing says back to school like a good old fashioned sweaty, fuzzed out garage rock show. The solution? Checking out local rockers Fat History Month. They’ll be headlining PA’s with support from Cambridge up and comers Reports.

September 4th: Sea Monsters (Precinct)

Long time local favorite rock and soul music collective Sea Monsters (you may remember them from last year’s SLF Harvest Fest) were long staples of Precinct last year until they got busy with other music projects. They’ll return this Sunday night for what’s sure to be an epic homecoming performance.

September 4th: Dub Apocalypse (Bull McCabe’s)

Just when you couldn’t think of the last time you went to see a reggae super group Dub Apocalypse drops down on the ‘ville for a Sunday residency at Bull McCabe’s. Don’t miss killer live dub reggae featuring member’s of Nate Wilson Group, Morphine, Dopapod, G-Love & Special Sauce, John Brown’s Body, & The B3 Kings.

September 7th: The English Beat (Johnny D’s)

Dust off your favorite checkered clothing because one of the best ska bands that ever existed is coming to the neighborhood! You’ll no doubt be skanking those arms at perfect 90 degree angles when The English Beat play their classic jams such as “Mirror in the Bathroom”, “Can’t Get Used to Losing You”, and (fingers crossed) my personal favorite, “Save it for Later.”

September 10th: Nate Rogers & Boston Band Crush Present: Mixtape 1978 with The Blizzard of 78 and Thick as Thieves (Rosebud)

Following their tributes to 1993, 1967, 1984, and 1997, Boston Band Crush invites The Blizzard of 78 and Thick as Thieves to pay homage to the music of 1978. Featuring tunes from The Rolling Stones, Foreigner, Toto, Buzzcocks, Blondie, Talking Heads, The Clash, Van Halen, Cheap Trick, Billy Joel, The Cars, The Police, Styx, Elvis Costello, Journey, The Bee Gees, and many many more. Check out the Facebook event for more details.


Somerville Live Music: One Man Bluegrass Band, Original Reggae & Live Synthpop

Aug 15 4:20 pm

By Sam Coren

DangerSounds' Sam and Dave

Union Square is getting transformed into music nerd heaven soon with the annual Somerville Rock and Roll Yard Sale happening August 21st and the opening of a new record store. Stay tuned for more Somerville Local First coverage on the much anticipated official opening of Somerville Grooves from Danielle Kennedy. Until then be sure to get out of the house and enjoy some of these great upcoming live shows during the next couple weeks at your trusty neighborhood independent music venues!

August 17th: Albino Mbie Project  (Johnny D’s)

Looking for a night of brilliant samba guitar work? Don’t miss NYC’s Albino Mbie Project throwing down soulful, latin-infused licks at Johnny D’s this Wednesday. Receita de Damba, a local Boston duo will be warming up the crowd.

August 19th: Pressure Cooker (Johnny D’s)

For over 14 Years Boston’s Pressure Cooker has been cranking out stellar reggae and rock steady originals. Their top notch musicianship and tight live sound are no doubt going to bring good times for those of you who want to start the weekend on the right foot.

August 20th: DangerSounds (Precinct)

I’m Burnin’ Up by DangerSounds
Need an excuse to just dance yourself into exhaustion on a Saturday night? Hop on down to Precinct Saturday for one of Boston’s most promising electronic duos, DangerSounds.  DangerSound’s Sam and Dave pump out funky electro jams for fans of Anoraak and Chromeo.

August 23rd:  Eric Royer (Johnny D’s)

Eric Royer’s claim to fame as a one man bluegrass band has served him well. In 2003 his interview on NPR’s All Things Considered brought his ingenuity and talent into the national spotlight. His crazy guitar/banjo/puppet contraption that he so masterfully plays is sure to bring the Johnny D’s crowd a big bluegrass bowlful of delight.

August 24th: Deli Magazines Summer Concert Series presents  The New Highway Hymnal (PA’s Lounge)

Indie music mag The Deli is sponsoring a night of New England rock at PA’s. Headlining will be the very trippy sound of Haverill surf rockers The New Highway Hymnal. Also on the bill and worth catching are,  Satellites Fall, an alternative power pop fans of The Smiths and Arcade Fire.

August 27th: Dirt Mall (Rosebud)

Rosebud is one of Davis Square’s best kept secrets for spotting early local talent. Dying for a dose of no-nonsense rock and roll in the same vein as The Hellacopters and The Cult? Check out Waltham’s Dirt Mall for pure unadulterated fun.

Know the inside scoop on good shows happening in the ‘ville? Tweet me at @samcoren for consideration in the next SLF Live Music post!

Somerville Live Music: Deep Heaven Now 4 Psych Rock Festival in Union Square

Aug 01 11:16 am

By Sam Coren

One of the best parts about living in Somerville is being in close proximity to some of the Boston area’s best live independent music venues. Who doesn’t love seeing up and coming talent for reasonably priced tickets in your own neighborhood? To give you a taste of what Somerville’s music scene has to offer I’ll be running a biweekly update with some of the most interesting music events playing in town:

August 3rd: Tribute to Blues Greats Robert Johnson & Mississippi John Hurt (Bloc 11 Cafe)
Aside making a well made cup of coffee, Bloc 11 in Union Square also serves as a good spot for blues, jazz, and singer-songwriter acts. Most of these music events are free, but you should definitely give the tip jar some love if you hear something you like. This Wednesday you can get over your hump day blues with musicians Craig Robertson and Zack Niman as they pay homage to Delta Blues legends Robert Johnson & Mississippi John Hurt. Show starts at 7pm.

August 4th: Mikael Mutti with Percussivo Mundo Novo  (Johnny D’s Uptown)

A world-class music prodigy makes a tour stop at our own Johnny D’s. Mikael Mutti’s fuses traditional Brazillian afrobeat rhythms with a dash of latin jazz and swirling synthesizers. Even cooler? Mutti’s featured all over the soundtrack for the 3D animated film Rio (2011) and he’s been known to make his own instruments out of various video game controllers.


August 5th & 6th:  Deep Heaven Now 4 – Union Square (PA’s Lounge and Precinct)
Endless Wave
Dig trippy guitar solos and crazy video light shows? Hop down to Union Square for the Deep Heaven Now 4 Psych Rock fest on Friday August 5th and Saturday August 6th. 26 bands will be playing Precinct and PA’s Lounge. For the low price of $10 a day you get access to both venues and the set times are staggered between the two so you don’t have to miss a band. Some notable acts that are not to be missed include local shoegazers Endless Wave and the far out experimental folk of Portland’s Herbcraft. For more info visit the Deep Heaven Now 4 Facebook event page and don’t forget to check out the compilation featuring all the bands playing in the streaming player below:


August 11th: Kobie (Johnny D’s Uptown)

It takes a lot of chutzpah to be a singer in a Prince cover band. However, if there’s anyone who could pull that role off gracefully it would be the Boston by-way-of DC singer-songwriter Kobie. When he’s not performing in Lovesexy, a tribute to The Artist, he’s bringing his original brand of sweet, funky soul to venues all over New England.

August 12th: Dave Sammarco Band (Sally O’Brien’s)

Got a hankering for some country fried rock? For those of you who doubt Somerville’s ability to deliver the sounds of the south, pay Sally O’Brien’s a Friday visit and catch Arlington’s Dave Sammarco Band in action. Nothing gets the weekend going like a nice glass of whiskey and shuffling your feet to some twang.

Sam Coren

Dec 13 8:15 pm

Sam Coren

Sam Coren is an inbound marketing specialist, blogger, photographer, radio DJ, and musician. She moved to Somerville’s Winter Hill neighborhood in 2009 after graduating from Northeastern University with a BS in Music Industry. As a firm believer in free form, independent radio, she can be found co-hosting a program entitled “You Can’t Do That On Radio Anymore” on 104.9 WRBB FM Boston on Sunday’s at 5pm EST.

Sam used to pay the bills by account managing promotions that offered cool new opportunities for musicians on, a music discovery website. She was also a staff writer for their blog. In April of 2010 Sam became the project manager at PullnotPush where she currently works. PullnotPush is an inbound marketing firm focused on helping small to medium-sized businesses get found online using HubSpot software. In October of 2010 Sam decided she was being kind of a bum when it came to making the world a better place. To fix this hole in her life she decided to put her skills to good use at Somerville Local First. As former blog editor Sam collaborated with community bloggers to produce content on the organization’s website that promotes member businesses, other local nonprofits, and city events. Nowadays, she is the content manager for, but still contributes to the SLF blog biweekly.

Catch up with Sam on her blog at or on Twitter at @samcoren.

Filed under: Blogger Bio


Nov 08 11:21 am
Shift Your Shopping Week - December 2nd-11th

Shift Your Shopping Week - December 2nd-11th

We are pleased to again collaborate with our friends at Union Square Main Streets to deliver a special promotion for the holiday season.  Last year was Shopapalooza; this year – Shift Your Shopping week!

From December 2nd-11th, SLF will be sharing blog posts, gift ideas, stories and events that will help you Choose Local & Independent this Holiday Season.

Click Here for the SLF Holiday Gift Guide

If your business or group would like to participate, click here to list a product(s) and here to list an event


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