BECCA STEVENS BAND READY TO ROCK UNDERBELLY
The Lyons, Million Dollar Quartet, Chuck Ragan and Pecha Kucha presenters entertain; The Origin of Humanity and Chicken Raising challenge
BECCA STEVENS BAND
Only if “insanely talented” were a genre could Becca Stevens Band be accurately placed in one. Emotive R&B rhythms blend seamlessly into folk, jazz and indie rock arrangements with a deceptively simple and utilitarian use of accordion, upright bass, piano and guitar. This understated style really shines on their interpretations of songs ranging from Usher’s “You Make Me Wanna” to Seal’s “Kiss From a Rose” (which they somehow manage to make 47 percent less clawing), all entirely deconstructed and then reassembled with new, ambitious dimensions and textures. 7:30 p.m. April 27 at Underbelly, Downtown, $20.
BROADWAY IN JAX
MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET
In December 1956, Elvis Presley drove his girlfriend into Memphis to buy Christmas presents. Fate led him to a stop at Sun Studios, where he joined three other soon-to-be legends – Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins – for the ultimate jam session. The well-documented Million Dollar Quartet, dramatized for Broadway, hits a Downtown Duval stage with more classics than we have room to print – among them, “Folsom Prison Blues,” “Great Balls of Fire,” “Hound Dog,” “Matchbox” and “I Walk the Line.” It’s 100 solid minutes of the most hallowed day in Memphis. April 22-27 at the T-U Center, Downtown, $37-$77.
It’s an unwavering, unflattering and wickedly hilarious portrait of the dysfunctional American family. Stone-cold Rita Lyons flips through a glossy magazine, unfazed by her husband’s impending death as she plans how to spend his money. Unaware of their father’s condition, the couple’s grown children come to visit, and it’s clear the dysfunction is hereditary. By her mother’s constant belittling, recovering alcoholic Lisa is driven to the comfort of a stiff drink. Curtis seems the more adjusted sibling, until the long-term boyfriend he’s been chatting with on the phone turns out to be entirely fictitious – to the joy of Curtis’ homophobic father. Uninhibited by tragedy, these characters pull no punches in the play’s debut production in Florida. 8 p.m. April 24-26 and 2 p.m. April 27 at Players by the Sea, Jacksonville Beach, $20-$23.
CHUCK RAGAN & THE CAMARADERIE
Chuck Ragan is like the Paul Bunyan of punk. He slays fish. He builds houses. He writes passionate love songs. He has an anonymously administered Chuck Norris-style Twitter account. He conceptualized the collaborative, family-style Revival Tour, which has popularized acoustic folk-punk to the point of saturation. Painting Ragan with such broad, bearded and flannel-clad strokes neglects his history leading seminal Gainesville-born hardcore heroes Hot Water Music since 1993. Consider Ragan the Springsteen of a generation raised on mosh pits and DIY values — and consider Springsteen jealous of Ragan and his unflappable man’s-man aesthetic. With Jonny Two Bags and Beau Crum, 8 p.m. April 28 at Jack Rabbits, San Marco, $18.
PECHA KUCHA 28
An architect, a museum director, a film festival founder, a tour guide, the executive director of Downtown Vision and a bar owner walk into a museum — no, this isn’t a set-up for a lame punch line. It’s the lineup for Pecha Kucha 28. Downtown is the theme of this month’s event — it’s kind of on fire — and these six participants were selected for their influences on the urban core. Each presenter must present 20 slides (with 20 seconds to present each slide) that will inform, rally or inspire. 6 p.m. April 24 at the Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville, Downtown, free e-tickets must be reserved at eventbrite.com.
FAITH & REASON
THE ORIGIN OF HUMANITY
Ready to expand your mind a little? OneJax, an institute of the University of North Florida, presents Faith & Reason: The Origin of Humanity, an event that seeks to promote understanding of various viewpoints on some touchy topics (you noticed the event’s title, yes?). The panel discussion is moderated by UNF president and former mayor John Delaney. Panelists include Dr. Anthony Rossi (UNF biology professor), Imam Shamu Shamudeen (Islamic Center of Northeast Florida), Dr. Julie Ingersoll (UNF associate professor of philosophy and religion) and other local theologians. 7 p.m. April 29 at UNF’s Robinson Theater; free e-tickets must be reserved, go to eventbrite.com.
For anyone who’s ever thought that having a chicken for a pet would be awesome, well, here you go. The Museum of Science & History presents Backyard Chickens as part of its MOSH After Dark series. Raising chickens in an urban setting has sparked a lot of interest in Northeast Florida and, in fact, the city of Jacksonville might run out of permits for chicken-keeping. Speaker Genora Crain-Orth, of River City Chicks, a Jax-based group dedicated to backyard birds, leads a discussion on what urban chicken farming is and the laws that regulate it. 6 p.m. April 26 at Museum of Science & History, Southbank, $5, register at themosh.org/events.