Wow, it’s one of those weekends in Fresno. You know, where there are so many cool music events happening that you wish you had 12 ears instead of two.
Here’s a guide to some of the top stuff, but feel free to add whatever else you know to be happening in the comments.
The Fresno Urban Sound Experience Festival is back for another year — this year as the Re:FUSE Festival (thanks to a little legal wrangling with Fuse TV). But let’s forget about the name and focus on the music — there are more than 40 local artists performing at the festival this year, which starts with a preview night on Friday at Full Circle Brewing Co., continues all around downtown Fresno on Saturday then caps off Saturday night with an afterparty at Tokyo Garden.
There’s a DJ lounge this year at The Loft, which should be super fresh. There’s also some cool new venues, like Hero’s, Club One and — most awesome — atop the spiral parking garage. The musical selections are all over the place, ranging from jazz and blues, to punk, rap and ska. And $15 gets you into everything. More info and the full band list is here. More good Re:FUSE reading can be found here.
THE CONVENTION CENTER IS HOPPIN’
Another big sign of life downtown: The Fresno Convention and Entertainment Center has a full weekend of concerts. Pepe Aguilar and Marco Antonio Solis share the stage at Selland Arena on Friday, while Jamie Foxx is at Saroyan Theatre on Sunday. It’s not music, but if you like to laugh, comedy’s Queen of Mean Lisa Lampanelli is at Saroyan on Friday night.
TWO SHOWS FOR GOOD CAUSES
Local musicians are also busy this weekend contributing their talents to two concerts for good causes.
On Friday night, Starline hosts a fund-raiser for National Livestrong Day. It features an impressive lineup of local music from MoFo Party Band, Patrick Contreras, Roger Perry and DB & The Struggle. Livestrong is trying to host 1,000 such benefit events in cities around the country on Friday.
On Saturday night, The Pink Show takes over the Tower Theatre. It raises money and awareness for breast cancer and domestic violence. We’ve already shown you their bra decorating project. Their Tower Theatre event is the cap-off, featuring guest speakers such as Sheriff Margaret Mims and Stefani Booroojian from KSEE 24. There will be art on display and live music from Lance Canales, Patrick Contreras, Steve Ono and Martin Viramontes.
LET’S GO BOWLING PT. 1
Local ska legends Let’s Go Bowling come out of hiding to celebrate their 23rd anniversary, playing a show Saturday night at Audie’s Olympic. Which presents an odd conflict with another event Saturday night. More on that in a second, but first a flier.
LET’S GO BOWLING PT. 2
After their Friday night benefit, MoFo Party Band is back on Saturday playing a grand re-opening party for Freeway Lanes in Selma. Fun fact: That’s where Let’s Go Bowling used to practice. Anyway, the place got renovated and the owner wants to have some concerts there, starting with this one. It’s $15 to get in and there’s a BBQ beforehand.
The always-interesting Dan Hicks performs at Tower Theatre on Friday night. He’s quite a character, as you’ll see from this YouTube video. I think that he Jason Mraz’s lost uncle, or something like that. Anyway, more info on the show is over here.
I’ll let the fliers speak for themselves on these ones: