A trio of nerdy jazz kids geeking out on hip-hop doesn’t exactly scream “winning recipe for band.” At least, that’s what a panel of music instructors thought when Canadian three-piece BadBadNotGood submitted some jazz renditions of Odd Future songs for a college project. As fate would have it, Odd Future ringleader Tyler, the Creator felt differently. He helped make the group indie darlings after hearing some of these tunes. With the later addition of a sax player, the four-piece has managed to experiment its way through some of the most fascinating genre-anarchistic pieces to come from just about any young band working these days. AARON CARNES
INFO: 8:30 p.m. Catalyst, 1011 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $22/adv, $25/door. 429-4135.
As a founding member of the SFJazz Collective, MacArthur “Genius” Fellow Miguel Zenon has spent a good deal of time in the Bay Area over the past decade. But the Puerto Rican alto saxophonist and composer doesn’t often get a chance to perform out with his blazing New York band. Featuring Venezuelan pianist Luis Perdomo, Austrian bassist Hans Glawischnig, and Puerto Rican drummer Henry Cole, the ensemble has mastered Zenon’s buoyant mélange of folkloric Puerto Rican forms and post-bop vocabulary. While he’s focused on big-concept multimedia projects in recent years, Zenon designed his stellar new album Tipico as a showcase for his prodigious bandmates. ANDREW GILBERT
INFO: 7 p.m. Kuumbwa Jazz, 320-2 Cedar St., Santa Cruz. $25/adv, $30/door. 427-2227.
Jerry “J Boog” Afemata, a reggae singer of Samoan descent, was born in Long Beach and raised in Compton, California. Steeped in Samoan culture and as the son of a Samoan chief, Afemata was nicknamed “Boog” by his siblings because he could never sit still for long. The artist has shuffled back and forth most of his life, living and traveling between Hawaii and California nonstop since the release of his debut album Hear Me Roar in 2007. He’ll be sharing the stage with Bob Marley’s 23-year-old grandson Jo Mersa Marley, as well as Jemere Morgan and Westafa. KATIE SMALL
INFO: 9 p.m. Catalyst, 1011 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $30/adv, $35/door. 429-4135.
One reason small clubs exist is that all big, mind-blowing bands start out as small, not-quite-blowing-your-mind-yet groups. Soul Journey Ent. is a local organization committed to fostering the talents of Santa Cruz’s untapped, soulful talents, and Soundcheck is the culmination of those efforts. The groups performing at Soundcheck run the gamut from soul to funk to hip-hop to reggaetón. The event features Mark London (solo debut), DJ Monk Early, Play P and the Prince, and 2 Fly Music Grp. Keeping the evening flowing is funnyman MC Mean Dean, who’ll be playing master of ceremony. AC
INFO: 9 p.m. Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $12/adv, $15/door. 429-6994.
FRIDAY 2/24-SUNDAY 2/26
SANTA CRUZ RAGTIME FESTIVAL
A lively take on the jigs and marches played by African-American bands in the late 19th century, ragtime served as a high-energy, syncopated bridge between John Philip Sousa and the dawn of jazz. The Santa Cruz Ragtime Festival celebrates all things ragtime, including its favorite son, Scott Joplin, with a multi-venue, multi-genre event showcasing the area’s stylists working to bring the once-beloved sound back into popularity. This year’s lineup features Elliott Adams, Ramona Baker, Andrew Barrett, Michael Chisholm, Danny Coots, Kylan DeGhetaldi and many more, and takes place at spots throughout Santa Cruz, including Calvary Church and Parish Hall, Lúpulo Craft Beer House, Woodstock’s Pizza, and the sidewalks of Pacific Avenue. CJ
INFO: 12 p.m. Friday-4 p.m. Sunday. Various locations. $25-$90. Information: santacruzragtime.com
At the inaugural Santa Cruz American Music Festival in 2015, Bonnie Raitt did what she does best: play rock and blues jams; tell stories about legendary artists she’s worked with throughout her career; shred her guitar as only the best blues women can; and win over fans again and again with her humor and humility. The standout moment came during her hit song, “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” a weeper about lost love. Raitt brought the largely-beer-fueled crowd to a hush and left them hanging on every heartbroken word she sang. It was grace, beauty and pain personified. CJ
INFO: 8 p.m. Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium, 307 Church St., Santa Cruz. $59-$101. 426-6966.
LA MISA NEGRA
Hailing from Oakland, La Misa Negra, which means “Black Mass,” or “Black Ritual,” blends cumbia with Afro-Colombian dance music to create a high-energy party and celebration of music, dance and Afro-Caribbean culture. An audience favorite in the Bay Area, La Misa Negra boasts an irresistible rhythm section, ace horns, unforgettable accordion work and relentless groove-ability. If you’re in the mood to sweat your worries away and celebrate the beauty and power of cultural and musical fusion, don’t sleep on this one. CJ
INFO: 9 p.m. Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz. $9/adv, $12/door. 479-1854.
Best known as vocalist for legendary rock band Santana, Tony Lindsay is a Grammy-winning singer and bandleader in his own right. Born in Kingston, New York, the Bay Area performer is one of the standouts of the local soul, rock and jazz scenes. On Feb. 27, Lindsay brings his Soul Soldiers, featuring vocalists Fred Ross and Will Russ, Jr., to town to perform hits from Marvin Gaye, Bill Withers, Lou Rawls, Sam Cooke and Donny Hathaway. CJ
INFO: 7 & 9 p.m. Monday, Feb. 27. Kuumbwa Jazz, 320-2 Cedar St., Santa Cruz. $25/adv, $30/door. 427-2227.
Described by Clash magazine as “’60s experimentation smashing stunningly into the present day,” Temples is a four-piece indie rock band from Kettering, England. The band’s second and most recent album, Volcano, has been a huge success in Europe, and takes the group’s catchy psych-pop to a new level of craftsmanship. While lead singer James Bagshaw’s vocals are reminiscent of MGMT and the Shins, a distinct, late-Beatles influence weaves throughout their songwriting and hairstyles—all four members resemble exotic plants. KS
INFO: 7 p.m. Don Quixote’s, 6275 Hwy. 9, Felton. $25. 335-2800.
IN THE QUEUE
Celebrated singer-songwriter. Wednesday at Kuumbwa
Tribute to the Grateful Dead and Phish. Friday at Moe’s Alley
Gypsy swing, jazz, blues and more. Friday at Poet and Patriot
Legendary jazz vibraphonist, pianist and percussionist. Sunday at Don Quixote’s
Hip-hop out of San Jose. Sunday at Catalyst