12 Pop, Rock and Jazz Concerts to Check Out in N.Y.C. This Weekend

Our guide to pop and rock shows and the best of live jazz happening this weekend and in the week ahead.

Pop & Rock

MARIAH CAREY at Madison Square Garden (Dec. 15, 8 p.m.). Despite her objections to being called Christmas royalty, it’s hard to argue with the streaming numbers that this pop powerhouse pulls each holiday season. This year, “All I Want for Christmas Is You” — which recently nabbed three Guinness world records for its popularity and ubiquity — hits the quarter-century mark. To celebrate the occasion, Carey reissued her 1994 album, “Merry Christmas,” and produced a mini-documentary about the making of her signature seasonal hit. On Sunday, she will close out a short tour on which she has performed holiday classics and more evergreen selections.
212-465-6000, msg.com

CALEB GILES at the Dance (Dec. 13, 8 p.m.). At 22, this rapper and multi-instrumentalist isn’t exactly a newcomer: He has released albums on his own and with Standing on the Corner, the experimental jazz and hip-hop group in which he plays saxophone. But Giles, a Bronx native, sounds undeniably fresh. On “Under the Shade,” released in July, songs built on sludgy samples and flavored by pensive, melancholy lyricism position him as a descendant of Sweatshirt, or a cousin of fellow New Yorkers like Mike and Deem Spencer. At the Dance, a new club in NoHo, Giles will perform an opening set for the mononymous pop experimentalist Arthur.

LOS LOBOS at New York Society for Ethical Culture (Dec. 14, 8 p.m.). This celebrated roots-rock group claimed to be “just another band from East L.A.” on their debut album, released in 1978; they proved themselves wrong when their late-80s cover of “La Bamba” became the first Spanish-language song ever to hit No. 1 on the Billboard pop chart. In the decades since, the band has solidified its reputation as a bunch of workhorses, with more than a dozen albums to their name and a ceaseless touring schedule that brings their signature blend of garage-rock and Mexican folk music to audiences worldwide. At the New York Society for Ethical Culture, they’ll play selections from “Llegó Navidad,” their new (and first) Christmas album.

PILE at Le Poisson Rouge (Dec. 13, 7:30 p.m.). Stasis is something of a foreign concept to this noise-rock act: Over the course of more than a decade, Pile has grown from a solo venture to a four-piece, and made music that consistently evades easy categorization or conventional song structure. The group, a longtime fixture of Boston’s indie music scene, also recently upended their hometown allegiance by relocating to Nashville. On Friday, they visit New York in support of their recent album, “Green and Gray,” which vacillates between post-hardcore ferocity and folksy rumination, begrudging everyone from the White House policy adviser Stephen Miller to the looming specter of death along the way.

TALULAH PAISLEY at Baby’s All Right (Dec. 19, 6:30 p.m.). Helmed by the singer-songwriter Lyris Faron, this recording project cultivates a twee aesthetic and bright, singsongy sound similar to that of the New York-based jangle-pop band T-Rextasy, which Faron also fronts. As it suits her, Faron can be unselfconsciously whimsical or unapologetically earnest — as evidenced by the singles she’s released this year, which include a paean to puffer coats and a scrappy cover of Phil Spector’s “Baby, I Love You.” Zenizen, the vibrant indie-soul project of Opal Hoyt, will open at this hot spot in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
718-599-5800, babysallright.com

[Read about the events that our other critics have chosen for the week ahead.]

Z100’S JINGLE BALL at Madison Square Garden (Dec. 13, 7 p.m.). This time of year, New York is decked out in stars, from department store windows to the top of the Rockefeller tree. On Friday at the Garden, stars of a different variety will do their part to lift holiday spirits at Z100’s annual bash, now in its 24th year. The show offers an opportunity to see Taylor Swift, who has yet to announce any New York shows in support of her recent album, “Lover,” perform new material. Other pop heavyweights on the bill include the Jonas Brothers, Camila Cabello and Halsey.
212-465-6000, msg.com


ETIENNE CHARLES at Dizzy’s Club (Dec. 17, 7:30 and 9:30 p.m.). This emerging trumpeter’s most recent album, “Carnival: The Sounds of a People, Vol. 1,” was built from field recordings that he captured during Carnival celebrations in his native Trinidad, then extrapolated into slippery compositions of his own. The tunes were played by an expert band of jazz musicians. But on some of the album’s most incendiary tracks the original Carnival recordings are still audible, roughly entwined with Charles’s band arrangements. On Tuesday, Charles (who is also part of the SFJAZZ Collective) will perform a mix of original music and holiday fare, all delivered in his Caribbean-inflected style. His group includes the pianist Christian Sands, the cuatro player Jorge Glem, the bassist Or Bareket and the drummer Savannah Harris.
212-258-9595, jazz.org/dizzys

GERALD CLEAVER’S STAX QUARTET at Bar Lunático (Dec. 14, 9). Cleaver is a drummer of booming power and utter sensitivity, equally at home playing straight-ahead jazz or improvising freely. He makes his hometown pride clear on albums like “Gerald Cleaver’s Detroit” and this year’s excellent “Live at Firehouse 12” — which features a few fellow side musicians with Michigan ties — but at this show he will explore the legacy of another soul music Mecca: Memphis. Joined by the guitarist Brandon Seabrook, the bassist Chris Tordini and a tenor saxophonist to be named, Cleaver will play interpretations of tunes from the catalog of Stax Records, which released classic recordings by the likes of Otis Redding, Booker T. and the MG’s, and the Staple Singers.
718-513-0339, barlunatico.com

SATOKO FUJII AND KAPPA MAKI at iBeam Brooklyn (Dec. 14, 8:30 p.m.) and 244 Rehearsal Studios (Dec. 15, 8 p.m.). An improviser of rumbling intensity and generous restraint, Satoko Fujii sometimes plays the piano in dense, clustered runs or heavily packed, dark-hued harmonies. Elsewhere, she plays the instrument like a drum, rapping a sparse rhythm on the side of the instrument’s body and plucking its dampened strings from the inside. At these back-to-back shows she will engage in a series of free improvisations with the trumpeter Kappa Maki. At the iBeam concert, they will also be joined by the drummer Tom Rainey.

LIONEL LOUEKE TRIO at Zankel Hall (Dec. 13, 9 p.m.). This Benin-born virtuoso wrangles a special mix of sounds from the guitar — plucking, strumming, slapping and stroking the instrument, as if to make it dance. On top of that he adds a vocal style that’s just as distinct, turning his mouth into a percussion instrument of its own. He will appear at Carnegie Hall with a global coalition of a group, featuring the Italian-Swedish bassist Massimo Biolcati and the Hungarian drummer Ferenc Nemeth, as well as the Brazilian percussionist Cyro Baptista, who appears as a special guest.
212-247-7800, carnegiehall.org

CHRISTIAN MCBRIDE AND INSIDE STRAIGHT at the Village Vanguard (through Dec. 15, 8:30 and 10:30 p.m.). With his quintet, Inside Straight, this masterful bassist (and emerging impresario) makes sense of a broad lineage in jazz and black music: You’ll detect hints of Blue Note swing, ’60s soul, Afro-Caribbean lilt and Coltrane-esque modal muscle, though the band pulls it all together into a sound of its own. This week at the Vanguard, the group — Steve Wilson on saxophones, Warren Wolf on vibraphone, Peter Martin on piano and Carl Allen on drums — is trotting out an entirely new book of compositions and arrangements.
212-255-4037, villagevanguard.com

JOHN ZORN’S ‘HEAVEN AND EARTH MAGICK’ at Roulette (Dec. 14, 8 p.m.). The alto saxophonist John Zorn recently completed a landmark week at the Village Vanguard, performing works from his magnum opus, the Masada songbook, with a sparkplug new quartet. That week, New York heard Zorn play more saxophone than he has in years, and it was a reminder of what we’ve been missing. Still, he generally prefers to emphasize his role as a composer, and on Saturday at Roulette he will present works new and old for a quartet that doesn’t include him: It has Stephen Gosling on piano, Sae Hashimoto on vibraphone, Jorge Roeder on bass and Tyshawn Sorey on drums. Drawing from classical and jazz methods, the chordal instruments will play strictly notated music written by Zorn while Roeder and Sorey will improvise around them. (Those hungry to hear Zorn himself play can catch a bit of that on Wednesday when his club, the Stone, hosts its Improv Night fund-raiser concert.)
917-267-0368, roulette.org

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