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From rock to ballroom, music rules the Levitt Pavilion stage this weekend

Published 7:16 am, Friday, August 15, 2014

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  • Brightside, the modern-roots rock band from California, kicks off a weekend of free music at the Levitt Pavilion on Friday night, Aug. 15. The outdoor show is at 8 p.m. Photo: Westport News/Contributed Photo / Westport News
    Brightside, the modern-roots rock band from California, kicks off a weekend of free music at the Levitt Pavilion on Friday night, Aug. 15. The outdoor show is at 8 p.m. Photo: Westport News/Contributed Photo

 

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Before the Sultans of String take the stage next week, the Levitt Pavilion is offering plenty of free music this weekend -- from light, modern-roots rock to raise-the-roof anthems to ballroom classics.

Friday: Modern-roots rock

Kicking off the weekend on Friday night, Aug. 15, the California band Brightside makes its East Coast debut with an 8 p.m. concert.

Formerly known as the the Clayton Joseph Scott Band, Brightside plays a sunny, upbeat style of modern-roots rock influenced by legends such as Bob Marley, Paul Simon and Bob Dylan, the Levitt said in a news release.

Scott, Brightside's leader, has performed across the U.S., Europe and Asia. Sweet Mercy Records, an independent label based in Oregon, heard him playing in a wine bar and recorded his debut maxi-single "Heavy Rest."

The five-member band has been getting air time on Oregon and northern California FM radio stations, the Levitt said, and its sound inspires listeners to get up and dance.

Saturday: New indie sound

Husband-wife rockers Todd Michaelson and Reena Shah bring their band -- My Pet Dragon -- to the Levitt stage in an 8 p.m. concert Saturday, Aug. 16.

Hailed by Hypetree as "the next best thing in the new indie music scene," My Pet Dragon has been compared to Coldplay, the Smashing Pumpkins, and the Flaming Lips, the Levitt said.

The band is known for its anthems featuring pop melodies, Michaelson's vocals and Shah's dancing. CT.com said, "This five-piece creates sweeping, anthemic, atmospheric rock songs, and sounds larger than five members strong."

A warmup act, DJ Zakhm, will perform from 8 to 8:30 p.m. He is an electronica-genre DJ.

Sunday: Ballroom elegance

Ballroom melodies will rule the Levitt Sunday evening when Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks take the stage at 7 p.m.

Grammy winner Giordano's credits include soundtracks for the HBO series "Boardwalk Empire" and Woody Allen's film "Sweet and Lowdown." The band's music ranges from jazz to swing to Latin and sounds of the 1920s and '30s.

The band has appeared in several feature films -- including "The Cotton Club," "The Aviator" and "Finding Forrester"-- and has performed at the Newport Jazz Festival and Lincoln Center.

Tuesday: Stones movie

A free screening of "Shine a Light," Martin Scorsese's 2006 documentary on a Rolling Stones performance, is planned at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 19.

The film takes it title from the Stones' song featured on their 1972 album "Exile on Main St." and takes viewers backstage during a performance at New York's Beacon Theatre.

The film also includes archive footage of the band.