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Friday: The Real Tuesday Weld and Lal Meri at Grand Performances

By Eric Richardson
Published: Thursday, July 17, 2008, at 04:18PM
Chris Douridas KCRW

KCRW's Chris Douridas hosts Friday night's Grand Performances.

The 2008 season of Grand Performances is in full gear, a month and a half into a schedule that runs into October. On Friday evening KCRW sponsors a show featuring UK band The Real Tuesday Weld and L.A.-based Lal Meri.

While the schedule lists KCRW Music Director Nic Harcourt as host, a last minute change has put the night in the hands of Nic's predecessor, Chris Douridas. We caught up with Chris via email to ask him about Grand Performances and why downtowners should be particularly excited about Friday's show.

ERIC RICHARDSON: Those of us in Downtown are quite spoiled, having a series like Grand Performances taking place right in our backyard. What are your thoughts on what the series means to the music scene here in L.A.?

CHRIS DOURIDAS: Bringing artists like Seun Kuti and Ceci Bastida and Rachid Taha to Grand Performances infuses cutting edge, global artistry into the heart of a revitalized Downtown LA. I think it's incredibly important for redefining the cultural identity of our city. It's so incredible diverse in population and it's nice to see it reflected in the bookings that are happening Downtown right now.

ER: Is this your first time hosting a night at Grand Performances?

CD: I've hosted many musical events Downtown over the years and it seems to get hipper and edgier all the time.

ER: For those not familiar with the two bands on Friday's line-up, what would you say to get them to come out?

CD: It's going to be great. Tcheka is a new young talent out of Cape Verde. He is creating his own style by galvanizing traditional music with contemporary elements. Real Tuesday Weld is really an off-kilter cabaret experience. Their music is like a dream from another time. Leader Stephen Coates gravitates towards '30s jazz music and campy vocal styles, with a decidedly apocalyptic vision. Great stuff.

Grand Performances offers free shows on the California Plaza Watercourt. Friday's show kicks off at 8pm. For a full schedule, check out Grand Performances' website.


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