Fri. July 1 -- Check the sensitive, smart & soulful young keyboardist Richard Sears in his semielectronified trio with bassist Garrett Lang and drummer Kevin Yokota. And buy his record for a slice of where jazz is really going. At the Blue Whale on the third floor of Weller Court Plaza, south of East First Street between South Los Angeles Street and South San Pedro Street, Little Tokyo 90012; 9pm-midnight; $10; validated parking underneath off Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Fri.-Sat. July 1-2 -- "New Weird America" is a two-day fest of art & rock. FRIDAY it's photography and other graphology by Melinda Beck, Ross Farrar, Tim Kerr, Stephen O'Malley, Mike Watt and a lot more, with hard-bashing depressives Coliseum onstage at 9pm. SATURDAY brings a whole raft of stonerism and sludge from the texturalized Tee Pee label, including the dronepounding Red Sparowes (pictured) plus Night Horse, Radio Moscow, True Widow, The F*cking Wrath, Ides of Gemini. At Nomad, 1993 Blake Ave., L.A. 90039 near the intersection of the 5 and 2 freeways, starting 6:30pm Friday and 2pm Saturday; $10; no publicity on imbibables but past experience suggests you won't go thirsty.
Sat. July 2 -- Dwight Trible transcends the term "singer" into the territory of African shaman and griot. At the Blue Whale on the third floor of Weller Court Plaza, south of East First Street between South Los Angeles Street and South San Pedro Street, Little Tokyo 90012; 9pm-midnight; $10; validated parking underneath off Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Sat. July 3 -- If you haven't seen longtime Sunday Evening Concerts coordinator Will Salmon do his virtuosic classical-theatrical instrumental-vocal thing, surprise yourself with his Mixed Message featuring Jie Ma (pipa), Heather Rhea Dawn (dance) and Daniel Corral (accordion). Opening is Quarteto Nuevo, world drummer Christopher Garcia's soul-touching internationalist acoustic trip with Jacob Szekely (cello), Kenton Youngstrom (guitar) and Damon Zick (flute). At Center for the Arts, 2225 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock 90041; 7pm; $10; (626) 795-4989.
Wed. July 6 -- What I like about Otep: attitude, theatricality, commitment, poetry. What I don't like: changing musicians all the time, her new look (Belinda Carlisle w/ blood), and what I've heard of her new "Atavistic" (generic flat '90s nu-metal with actually too much poetry). I still root for her cuz she's got heart, and she always seems to be in trouble. With five more bands. At the Key Club, 9039 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood 90069; doors 6pm; $17; 18+; www.keyclub.com; (310) 274-5800.
Thurs. July 7 -- If you think instrumentals are boring, wait till Paul Lacques gets out his lap steel and Double Naught Spy Car hit the wet pavement. In the bar of Taix Restaurant, 1911 Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake 90026; 10:30pm; free; www.taixfrench.com.
Read Brick Wahl’s jazz picks in LA Weekly here (he's got great mainstream and Latin club selections), Don Heckman’s jazz picks here and MoshKing's metal listings here. Read John Payne's plutonic Bluefat.com here.