Before we get into this week’s batch of local music news, let’s acknowledge the music world's recent spate of random, too-soon deaths: Coolio, Takeoff, Aaron Carter—there's a variety there, but they were all important to their fans and made their mark on the music world. Hearing of someone’s passing can sometimes motivate us to live life more fully, so don't find it strange if you want to get out and incorporate some local sounds.
Can’t miss upcoming events.
While we may dread the drop into frenzied holiday shopping, one thing our city has going for it are its exciting holiday markets. My People's Market, masterminded by the Mercatus collective of BIPOC-owned, small businesses, is one of Portland's best. And this upcoming indoor iteration marks the fifth anniversary of the well-curated invitation of vendors, makers, and musicians. The market hosts more than 120 vendors each day, including various delicious local food pop-ups—like vegan panadería La Casa De Mamá and antojito experimentalists Maruka Loka—and daily lineups of local performers: On Saturday, November 19, celestial jazz producer Brown Calvin, spoken word artist Izzy Is Real, and DJs Mami Miami and K Marie perform. Then on Sunday, November 20, North Portland rapper Mic Capes, Edna Vazquez with Mariachi Portland, experimental beat project Psychotropika take the stage, while DJ Myrie, DJ Lapaushi, and theNumberz.fm spin sets. Tickets are free, but RSVPing is encouraged. (Oregon Convention Center, 777 NE MLK, Sat Nov 19-Sun Nov 20, 11 am-5 pm, tickets here, FREE)
New release from a Portland-relevant artist.
“Northeast Phonk (N.E.P.),” Fountaine
It’s always a good day when Portland-based rapper and producer extraordinaire Fountaine drops new material. On Friday, the multi-talented artist released the lead single from his forthcoming EP Enigma, which follows his 2021 projects Blue? II and South of Nowhere. The downtempo, moody “Northeast Phonk (N.E.P.)” has a funky bassline, over which Fountaine makes an obvious double entendre for Northeast Portland. Fountaine steadily quickens his cadence over two verses, until the song feels like walking the streets while smoking a buzzy Indica, like Platinum Girl Scout Cookies. He narrates the scene: “Rolling up / smoking on weed / chasing that bag, chasing that bag.”
ADDED TO THE QUEUE:
Some upcoming music buzz to put on your radar.
Nashville-raised singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Sophia Allison—the stand-out indie rocker who performs as Soccer Mommy—is coming to Portland next month! The immensely talented Allison built Soccer Mommy's name on pop-inspired, guitar-based bedroom recordings, which she posted to her Bandcamp page. Then in 2018, she released her studio debut, Clean to critical acclaim. When it comes to Allison’s most recent LP, Sometimes Forever, she understood the assignment; it matches Clean’s excellent use of crisp melodies, ’90s-informed vibe, and satisfying melodrama, this time with cinematic production by Daniel Lopatin. Smooth pairing alert: Montreal indie crooners Tops will open the show. (Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside, Thurs Dec 8, 8:30 pm, tickets here, $27.50 adv, $30 day of show, all ages)
The last couple weeks we’ve heard of some stellar New Year’s Eve events: Brandi Carlile, Digable Planets, DJ Anjali and the Incredible Kid, and Orquestra Pacifico Tropical. This week we’re stoked about this NYE show featuring Esteemed Portland indie rock band Eyelids at The Fixin’ To in St. Johns. The show will be the band’s last show before their forthcoming LP, A Colossal Waste of Light, drops on March 10, and the band embarks on a 35-city tour, their largest tour to date. Gilly Ann Hanner's new project Desír and DJ Couches (AKA Eyelids’ frontman Chris Slusarenko) are billed as special guests for the evening, but you never know what’s going to happen at an Eyelids show, whether it be Stephen Malkmus or a sweater crucifixion. (The Fixin' To, 8218 N Lombard, Sat Dec 31, 9 pm, tickets here, $22, 21+)