Top 10 hottest acts at WMNF's 29th annual Tropical Heatwave (with audio, video + complete schedule; pre-Heat panel times included!)

[image-1] [pictured right] An ‘MNF favorite, singer, songwriter and guitarist Alejandro Escovedo plays with a naturally brazen rock n’ roll swagger, sings low and cool with a troubadour’s twang, draws from Tex-Mex, roots, punk and Southern rock influences, and fills in the spaces with diverse sonic textures (violin, cello, percussion, steel guitar, harmonica). He’s collaborated with artists ranging from pre-solo career Ryan Adams on Whiskeytown’s 1997 LP, Strangers Almanac, to Bruce Springsteen on his own ninth album, Street Songs of Love, produced by Tony Visconti (David Bowie, Morrissey) and due out June 29. According to the artist, this album is “about love, the pursuit of a feeling that is forever elusive, mysterious, and addictive.” 8:30-9:45 p.m., El Pasaje Plaza.

Dynasty Lady emcee Dynasty is a petite firecracker who sets her rhymes against modern-day hip-hop production infused with retro soul and R&B. She brings a refreshing feminine bravado to her rhymes, like when she introduces herself in “Femcee”: “My name is Dynasty / I kill them with the finesse / telling me I’m the best / not just of the broads / Yeah, they call me femcee / put ‘em in a frenzy / there’s nothing feminine about killing an emcee … ” Check out her flow below. 8:55-9:15 p.m., New World Brewery.


Two Man Gentlemen Band Long Islanders Fuller Condon (upright bass) and Andy Bean (banjo, guitar, cornet) are a clever and charismatic Americana/neo-vaudevillian duo who share singing and kazoo playing duties, and bring a jaunty feel to their hot jazz-vintage R&B-Tin Pan Alley sound. The duo’s pithy, tongue-in-cheeky ditties focus on pre-1940’s history and culture, with topics ranging from drugs (“Me, I Get High on Reefer,” “Fancy Beer”), history (“The Titanic Disaster,” “Stonewall Jackson’s Arm”), and culture (“Unicycle Blues,” “They Can’t Prohibit Love”). Live, both gents perform in dapper throwback attire and lead stomping shout-a-longs that are about as raucous as you can get with acoustic music. Check out Live in New York below, the gentlemen's just-released live album. 9:45-10:45 p.m., Ybor Room.

The Ettes Established in LA by three NYC-native musicians who ultimately landed in Nashville (their current homebase), The Ettes are vocalist/guitarist Lindsay “Coco” Hames, drummer Maria “Poni” Silver, bassist Jeremy “Jem” Cohen, and recent addition, guitarist Johnny “Shoulders” Cauffiel. The band has earned heaps of praise for 2009’s Do You Want Power, a tight third album that builds upon their ferocious, sexy-heavy style of beat-punk garage rock with fuzzbox riffage and grimy basslines growling and biting over heavy-treading rhythms, Coco’s pop girlish vocals pouting, prancing or compelling at will. Check out their official video for the song "No Home" below. 10:50-11:50 p.m., Cuban Club Cantina.

BoomBox Singer-guitarist Zion Godchaux is the son of former Grateful Dead members Keith and Donna Jean Godchaux; Zion even performed in the revived edition of his parents’ Heart of Gold Band (their short-lived project after leaving the Dead in 1980). He actually met co-member DJ/producer Russ Randolph while recording HGB’s At The Table in 2004 and the two formed BoomBox shortly after. You can hear the “Shakedown Street” groove in Zion’s guitar riffs and Jerry Garcia-esque solos, Randolph incorporating electro rhythms and layers of sonics via sequencers, groove boxes and turntables. The result disco-house jamtronica dusted with hints of psyche rock. Check out three of their tracks below. 11:10 p.m.-12:30 a.m., Cuban Club Bandshell.




Soulphonics & Ruby Velle We brought the Soulphonics to town for our inaugural Sensory Overload event and they, in turn, brought the house down with their infectious funk, soul and R&B revue ring-led by vintage classy frontwoman Ruby Velle, her [image-9]powerful, sassy vocals rising and falling to the well-oiled drive of a three-piece horn section (tenor sax, baritone sax and trumpet), and players on B3 organ, guitar, bass and drums. The Gainesville-grown ensemble re-located to Atlanta in early 2008 and just released their first recording, a 7” single called “Feet on the Ground.” 11:55 p.m.-1 a.m., El Pasaje Plaza.

The Pauses Playing one of the late-late shifts is Orlando’s promising indie alt pop-tronica threesome The Pauses. Vocalist Tierney Tough provides the electric piano-driven melodies and sings in a honeyed soprano while guitarist Jason Kupfer and drummer Nathan Chase bring momentum and incorporate digi-effects (samples, break-beats, and unidentified laptop-produced sonic embellishments). The Pauses are currently raising funds to record their debut with producer/engineer J. Robbins, and have made it halfway to their $4,500 goal. 12:10-1 a.m., Orpheum.

Complete schedule below; astericks * indicate recommended acts (including those listed above).



1-4 p.m., CL Space, 1911 13th St. N., #W200., Tampa, $5 (or free with Heatwave wristband).

Music Publishing and Copyright Law, 1 p.m. Learn how to copyright your work as well as the in-and-outs of music publishing and licensing; presented by Kevin Astl, Esq.

Producer/Beat Workshops, 2 p.m. Local DJs and producers demonstrate how they create their beats and offer insight on how they collaborate with MCs/vocalists; featuring DJ Royce (Versatile Entertainment, Acafool), Lazy (WMNF, Red Tide), Spindiana Jones (Tampa Bay Dream Team) and moderator Young Deacon (

Demo Listening, 3 p.m. A panel that includes myself and radio DJs Flee (of WMNF) and Husky Jon (of 97X) listen to your demos and give our input and critique.


5 p.m.-1:30 a.m., The Cuban Club, New World Brewery, Orpheum, El Pasaje Plaza, Ybor Room, and Crowbar, Ybor City, $32 in advance/$40 at the door.

[image-10]Cuban Club Ballroom

*Christabel and the Jons [pictured right], 5:30-6:30 p.m.

*Alex Meixner, 6:50-7:50 p.m.

*Luminescent Orchestrii, 8:10-9:15 p.m.

Ever So Klever, 9:45-10:50 p.m.

3rd Stone Band, 11 p.m.-12:15 a.m.

Cuban Club Bandshell on the Patio

Tomas Delamnoy & Somos Musica, 5-5:55 p.m.

Mark Levine and the Latin Tinge, 6:20-7:35 p.m.

Mitch Woods and His Rocket 88s, 8-9:15 p.m.

Tornado Rider, 9:40-10:45 p.m.

*BoomBox, 11:10 p.m.-12:30 a.m.

Cuban Club Cantina

HuDost, 5:15-6:15 p.m.

Stone River Boys with Dave Gonzalez, 6:35-7:50 p.m.

*Rachel Goodrich, 8-9:05 p.m.

Reverend Billy C. Wirtz, 9:25-10:30 p.m.

*The Ettes, 10:50-11:50 p.m.

Hamell on Trial, 11:55 p.m.-1 a.m.

[image-11]El Pasaje Plaza

*Nervous Turkey, 5:25-6:25 p.m.

*Ruthie Foster [pictured left], 6:50-8:10 p.m.

*Alejandro Escovedo and the Sensitive Boys, 8:30-9:45 p.m.

Jason Ricci & New Blood, 10:20-11:30 p.m.

*The Soulphonics & Ruby Velle, 11:55 p.m.-1 a.m.

New World Brewery

*Jim Morey Band, 6-6:45 p.m.

*Chicken Chasers, 7-7:45 p.m.

Black & Tenn, 8-8:45 p.m.

*Dynasty, 8:55-9:15 p.m.

*The Semis, 9:30-10:15 p.m.

*Sons of Hippies, 10:30-11:15 p.m.

Sleepy Vikings, 11:30 p.m.-12:15 a.m.

*The Equines, 12:15-1 a.m.

[image-12]The Ybor Room

Grant Peeples, 6-7 p.m.

Kevin So, 7:15-8:15 p.m.

"Poetry Is" Showcase, 8:30-9:30 p.m.

*Two Man Gentlemen Band [pictured right], 9:45-10:45 p.m.

Sista Otis, 11 p.m.-midnight


Lauris Vidal and Andy Zipf, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

*The Hip Abduction, 6:50-7:40 p.m.

*Have Gun, Will Travel, 8-9 p.m.

The Movement, 9:20-10:25 p.m.

Jonathan Tyler and the Northern Lights, 10:45-11:50 p.m.

*The Pauses, 12:10-1 a.m.


*GreyMarket, 6-6:55 p.m.

*Peter Baldwin Band, 7:15-8:10 p.m.

*Black Blondie, 8:30-9:30 p.m.

*B.C., 9:45-10:15 p.m.

Johnny Cakes and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypso, 10:40-11:35 p.m.

Unkempt, 11:55 p.m.-1:15 a.m.

Every year in the weeks leading up to the official start of summer, WMNF throws a multi-stage music fest in Ybor City and brings a diverse range of acts to fill up the bill. The 29th annual Tropical Heatwave has expanded, and now encompasses two additional venues and more than 40 performers. Here are the ones you don’t want to miss.

Ruthie Foster Whether she’s delivering her frank poetry in a raw gospel-soul wail or sonorous croon, singer-songwriter Ruthie Foster is laying it down to the blues, her 2009 album, The Truth According to Ruthie Foster, earning her a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Blues Album. 6:50-8:10 p.m., El Pasaje Plaza.

Luminescent Orchestrii [pictured right] For fans of the gypsy punk movement (which most famously birthed Gogol Bordello), Luminescent Orchestrii (also from Brooklyn) produces a blend of Eastern European folk music, rock and gypsy jazz, high-spirited singers/string-players Sarah Alden (violin) and Rima Fand (violin, viola) adding dark, earthy drama to the Orchestrii’s sound. Rounding out the collective is Sxip Shirey on resophonic guitar, bullhorn harmonicas and melodica, and Benji Fox-Rosen on mini-double bass. 8:10-9:15 p.m., Cuban Club Ballroom.

Black Blondie Drawing on elements of neo-soul, hip-hop and acid jazz, Minneapolis four-piece Black Blondie — which self-released a full-length LP Do You Remember Who You Wanted to Be, in April — is fronted by singer Samahra Linton, whose vocals are R&B slinky or throaty against the band’s atmospheric, downtempo grooves. 8:30-9:30 p.m., Crowbar.

See more videos, listen to audio, and check out the complete schedule of Heatwave performers after the jump.

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