The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley, weekend of May 25-28

Blues vocalist Shemekia Copeland performs at the Freight & Salvage on Saturday night. Photo: WXPN

SHEMEKIA COPELAND Vocalist Shemekia Copeland’s most recent album, Outskirts of Love, won the Blues Music Award for best album of the year. She’ll be performing at the Freight & Salvage on Saturday. Here’s what the Chicago Sun-Times had to say: “Shemekia’s a ball-of-fire vocalist with a voice that’s part Memphis, part Chicago and all woman… devastatingly powerful. She’s a great singer, period.” Saturday, May 26, 8 p.m., Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, 2020 Addison St.

SARAH CAHILL Pianist Sarah Cahill, whom The New York Times has called “fiercely gifted,” performs a solo concert on Sunday at the Berkeley Art Museum. Cahill, a champion of modern and contemporary composers, will play works by Lou Harrison, Jon Scoville, Paul Dresher and Ruth Crawford. She’ll be joined for two pieces by violinist Kate Stenberg. Sunday, May 27, 1 p.m., BAMPFA, 2155 Center St.

WONDER WOMEN The Berkeley Art Center opens its exhibition “Wonder Women: Local Treasures” this weekend. Curator George Krevsky has gathered a group of 10 women artists: Helen Berggruen, Kay Bradner, Stacey Carter, Dana DeKalb, Lisa Esherick, Robbin Henderson, Naomie Kramer, Diana Krevsky, Tabitha Soren (“Lindsey,” left) and Jan Wurm. Here’s what BAC has to say: “Sometimes political, often lyrical and surreal, these artists balance their personal and professional lives with the needs of their communities.” Exhibition runs until June 30. Opening reception Saturday, May 26, 6-8 p.m., Berkeley Art Center, 1275 Walnut St.

STOMPY JONES Stompy Jones, which takes its name from a classic Duke Ellington tune, has a repertoire which features revivals of classics by Louis Jordan, Earl Hines, Fletcher Henderson, Louis Prima, Roy Milton and others. It’ll be bringing down the house at Ashkenaz on Saturday night (dance lesson at 8 p.m., show at 9 p.m.). How can you resist this: “Stompy Jones boasts musicians who have been playing this music all their lives, with sizzling horns, slapping bass, and irrepressible dance drum beats. Hank Maninger plays guitar and belts and shouts the blues, with trumpeter Rob Dehlinger and saxophonist Keith Crossan trading riffs with boogie-woogie pianist William Beatty. Drummer Lee Beary and bassist ‘Little David’ Rose keep the rhythm section tight.” Saturday, May 26, 8 p.m., Ashkenaz, 1317 San Pablo Ave.


ROSES IN BLOOM Our gray May is supposed to break into beautiful sunshine on Sunday. If that’s the case, what could be better than enjoying the Berkeley Rose Garden with a musical background? You can wander the 1,500 rose bushes, take in views of the Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge, and listen to jazz music performed by the Bay Area Jazz Society on Saturday afternoon, as part of this year’s Roses in Bloom Acoustical Series. Saturday, May 26, 3-5 p.m., Berkeley Rose Garden, 1200 Euclid Ave.

Don’t miss these other events covered on Berkeleyside:

Adam Strauss’ ‘The Mushroom Cure’ at The Marsh is piquant and poignant
Big Screen Berkeley: ‘The House of Tomorrow’
Diana Gameros’ opening act; Irene Young’s Half Full benefit