If you are looking for some interesting concerts to check out for free, hordes of talented musicians will be playing at MacArthur Park in Los Angeles and Memorial Park in Pasadena as part of the Levitt Pavilion’s concert series.
Daedalus, Teebs and Peralta — Aug. 20
If you haven’t been able to attend the music fests featuring big-name electronic artists, you can simply head over to the park to listen to Daedalus, Teebs and Peralta display their best electronic chops. Daedalus also happens to have graduated from USC Thornton School of Music, so you can rest assured a fellow Trojan is mixing the music that will satisfy the raver in you.
Los Rakas, Niña Dioz —
Cousins Los Rakas focus on creating a brand of hip-hop with Panamanian flavor. The duo is climbing up in the music world, having recently taken the “Discovery Artist” prize from the Latin Alternative Music Conference. Its bilingual tracks bring in a reggae flow sure to keep your head bopping. The hip-hop sounds continue with Mexican rapper Niña Dioz, a self-confident musician whose innocent, feminine exterior belies her tough lyrics and rapping skills. The beats might be more slow-paced, but like any good rapper, Dioz delivers rhymes with a machine-gun agility.
Mia Doi Todd – Aug. 25
Long-time singer/songwriter Mia Doi Todd recently returned with her ninth album, Cosmic Ocean Ship. Inspired by nature, Todd’s latest work serves as a spiritual exploration of the soul, body and mind, while also creating a sense of optimism for the state of Planet Earth. Todd will put you in a state of complete and utter relaxation with her soft, melodic and mellow voice, which is perfectly complemented by the beautiful atmosphere of the bit of nature Downtown has to offer. Todd is not one for the outrageous music goer, but she puts you in a wonderful sense of ease with her smooth style and harmonious nature.
Francisca Valenzuela, Rhythm Roots Allstars — Aug. 26
Chilean U.S.-born Francisca Valenzuela is a singer and writer whose vocal chops somehow both challenge and invite you. Valenzuela’s range is obvious and even on recordings her feisty persona can be detected. Joining her onstage will be the Rhythm Roots Allstars, a group with a penchant for dance tunes. The group meshes manifold instruments, from bass to keyboard to horn, and takes influence from dance genres like funk, afrobeat and dub.
Secret Sisters — Aug. 18
Yes, this duo is actually a sister act. Alabama natives Laura and Lydia Rogers team up with Grammy award-winning producer T. Bone Burnett carve their spot in the music world. Their smooth harmony seems to come easily and meshes well with a country and bluesy sound that makes you feel as if you’ve time traveled. Graceful and delicate, their sound is bound to make for a cozy intimate show.
Billy Childs — Aug. 20
Pianist Billy Childs is an Angeleno who started playing the piano keys at the age of six. The musician has won three Grammy awards and performed with everyone from Sting to the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Thankfully, you won’t have to pay the price of a usual classical concert to see this virtuoso at work.
Toy Selectah & Master Blaster Soundsystem — Aug. 25
Toy Hernandez, better known by his stage name, Toy Selectah, will be joining forces with Master Blaster Soundsystem (comprised of Brian Ramos, Cecy Trevino, DJ Dus, Maclovio Perez III, Andrew Ita and S’vani Quintanilla) to put on an auditory thrill: cumbia electronica and cumbia krunk — underground genres that have a Colombian feel to them. These DJs mix Colombian flavor with reggae, hip hop and electronic dance music to produce a unique concoction of music that is sure to engage the audience with its infectious rhythms and syncopated beats.
Jessica Fichot — Aug. 26
Boasting the ability to sing, play the accordion and the toy piano, Jessica Fichot is bound to put on an intriguing and memorable show. The multilingual artist was raised surrounded by the French, Chinese and American cultures, a diversity that she strives to create in her music. Heralded by publications such as L.A. Weekly and the San Francisco Chronicle, Fichot is an act sure to at least pique your curiosity.