For live music fans, August is a time of scarcity. September, on the other hand, is all about options. All month long, you’ll have your pick of interesting shows. I’ve put our star next to seven of them, but I could have discussed many others, too: veteran bachata singer Felix D’Oleo at The Factory on Saturday the 2nd, for instance, or Jersey City’s own CR and the Nones’s record release event on the Thursday the 7th at Pet Shop, or prolific, mesmerizing singer-songwriter and acoustic player Damien Jurado at White Eagle Hall on Wednesday the 13th, or Pinay pop singer Camille de la Cruz at NJCU on Saturday the 23rd, or Argentine blues rocker and electric guitarist Alejandro Meola at Fox & Crow on Thursday the 28th, or local favorites The Clydes at the eastern end of the pedestrian plaza on that same day.
Could you see both? Well… no, not realistically. You’re going to have to make a choice, and by the fourth Thursday of the month, you’ll be used to it. On the 14th, three outstanding, well-traveled club attractions will be in action in Jersey City. On Friday the 22nd, one of the most storied indie rock bands of the last twenty years goes up against the power-pop pride of Springfield, New Jersey. The next night, you could an excellent Latin music show in Bergen-Lafayette or attend the Hudson West Folk Festival at Nimbus. Can’t do it all. Much as you might like to.
The Vaughns @ Art House Productions (September 22)
You may have heard: Jersey City’s flagship performing arts organization has opened its new theater to the public. It’s a comfortable space with a new sound system and light kit suitable for generating drama. That makes it an ideal spot to catch up with New Jersey’s most underrated band. The Vaughns had been a reliable club attraction in Jersey for years before putting out debut full-length FOMO in 2019 — and on that album, they fulfilled the promise of their stage shows with a set of catchy, immediate, witty power pop songs (okay, they might call it pop-punk) with no filler whatsoever. All these stories were forcefully told by singer Anna Lies, who remains a likeable presence no matter how indignant she gets. The Springfield band followed up FOMO with a holding-pattern EP on Equal Vision, but they’re promising some surprises on sophomore album Egg Everything, which’ll be out at the end of the month. There’s no Jersey project I’m anticipating more than this one. This show was put together by Dancing Tony Susco, creator of Goatchella, Groove on Grove, the Ghost of Uncle Joe’s, and a thousand other fun things. It’s the second Dancing Tony production at Art House. Let’s hope this is a long and fruitful collaboration. Oh… and you might want to visit the Art House page to see what else might be happening there this month. Just saying. (Appearing with Cantations, Waltzer, and Tea Eater at Art House Productions, 345 Marin Blvd.; 6:30 doors, 7:30 show; $12 online, $17 at the door; visit www.arthouseproductions.org.)