“I don’t and have never used my sexuality to sell anything,” DJ Rap (a.k.a. Charissa Saverio) told Drum & Bass Arena. “I am where I am because I spin, produce, compose and engineer all my own tracks. I’ve worked very hard to get where I am—if at the end of the day I’m an attractive bird, so be it.” The acclaimed drum & bass spinner/producer is indeed the attractive bird you may remember from 1999’s dance-pop crossover Learning Curve, if not 2000’s hard-slamming Brave New World. OK, she’s in that Twix commercial, too. Thursday, March 6 @ Axis, 108 S. 500 West, 9 p.m. 800-888-TIXX.
BEN TAYLOR BAND
He’s the son of James Taylor and Carly Simon, but MTV didn’t make a reality show out of it. “I’ve led a completely different life than my father,” the singer-songwriter-guitarist told Vogue, although he doesn’t mind when you bring up JT. “If people didn’t like the way I sounded, they wouldn’t be making the comparison.” The Ben Taylor Band’s excellent debut, Famous Among the Barns (Iris), is as much a 21st-century update of dad as it is a credible bid for the adult-contemporary circle with the David Grays and John Mayers of modern pop. Thursday, March 6 @ The Zephyr Club, 301 S. West Temple, 9:30 p.m. 355-CLUB.
Like a gumbo-truck collision of Dr. John, The Meters and G. Love & Special Sauce, King Johnson’s fat wall of funky grooves and hot horns is far more New Orleans than their native Atlanta on their latest indie disc, Hot Fish Laundry Mat. “The real sound of the band comes from the full collaboration,” says singer-guitarist Oliver Wood, brother of Medeski, Martin & Wood’s Chris. “We thought it might be a little too all-over-the-place, [but] what everyone tells us is that it’s actually very cohesive, simply because every song sounds like us.” Thursday, March 6 @ Harry O’s, 427 Main, Park City, 9:30 p.m. 800-888-TIXX.
A solid entry into the Best Band Name Ever sweepstakes, though they sound nothing like Aerosmith and only one member actually drives a Camaro. The Seattle quintet (featuring members of rawk legends Zeke) comes off more like Soundgarden writing a meth-lab thesis on garage rock and high-desert stoner metal in blood, sweat and Valvoline. “We’re serious about making music, but it’s not to be taken too seriously,” says Ben Rew, lead singer and drivin’ the Camaro. “I never thought we’d be doing this in front of people, much less going on tours.” Friday, March 7 @ Liquid Joe’s, 1249 E. 3300 South, 9:30 p.m. 467-JOES.
When Macy Gray played SLC last year on the Olympic Medals plaza, she and the audience endured sub-zero temps and an interminable opening set by local ‘mo-core fluffers Colors (shudder). Thankfully, they’re gone now and Gray’s bringing the soul revue indoors, even though the raspy-foxy-earthy funkstress’ third album, The Trouble With Being Myself (Epic), won’t drop until May. “What really turns me on is when there’s people in the front row,” she says. “I turn it on for those people because they’ve put in the effort.” Well, maybe a little less this time. Saturday, March 8 @ The Union Ballroom, University of Utah, 8 p.m. 800-888-TIXX.
GLOBAL FUNK COUNCIL
Barely in existence for a year, San Diego’s Global Funk Council have taken the dodgy art of “jam” to frighteningly funky and genuinely jazzy new heights of intense musicianship that you can actually dance to—all in 200 shows and one album, Keep On Pushin.’ Impressive. “I’ve spent a lot of years playing professionally, trying to be a better musician,” keyboardist Anthony Smith, formerly of Carlos Washington & Giant People, told the Vail Daily. “I didn’t feel there was necessarily a scene where good musicians were recognized for being good musicians.” Saturday, March 8 @ Port O’ Call, 78 W. 400 South, 9:30 p.m. 521-0579.
THE POTOMAC ACCORD
Neither a history lesson nor a promising evening of party-down rock action, St Louis’ Potomac Accord is a dark and brooding affair, heavy on the piano/violin intricacies and epic-length songs—think Ben Folds Five on a serious bummer, or Sigur Ros unconcerned with being oh-so Sigur Ros. The band’s forthcoming In 100 Years the Prize is Forgotten (First Flight) is a gorgeous listen; live, it’s illustrated with background slides and film: “We toss our experiences out into the public every night possible with hope that someone may understand the message.” Saturday, March 8 @ Todd’s Bar & Grill, 1051 S. 300 West, 9:30 p.m. 328-8650.
SMOKIN’ JOE KUBEK & BNOIS KING
The old pitch of “hot guitar licks and cool vocals” may be overused, but there are few better ways to sum up the partnership of Texas six-string killer Joe Kubek and Louisiana jazz cat Bnois King. Kubek’s fretboard flourishes explode on the brand-new Roadhouse Research (Blind Pig), while King’s gravelly soul-man pipes keep it all street-level. “When we first ran into each other, it was in some club dressing room,” Kubek recalls. “We just kinda sat there and looked at each other. It was weird.” As weird as that thing on your chin, Joe? Monday, March 10 @ The Dead Goat Saloon, 119 S. West Temple, 9 p.m. 328-GOAT.
“I sing in Spanish, and I sing in English,” says B-Side Players frontman Karlos Paez. “I’m Chicano. People have a problem with that word, but this is Chicano culture. Expressing culture, people will be close-minded to it. We’ve dedicated our energy through the music. That’s our movement, and it’s the most hard-core.” The eight-piece SoCal Latin-funk-soul-reggae-rock outfit’s latest album, Movement (Surf Dog), is hot but still no match for the live shows, where they’re known for going unplugged and getting percussive on myriad traditional Latin instruments on a moment’s notice. Wednesday, March 12 @ Suede, 1612 Ute Blvd., Park City (Kimball Junction), 9 p.m. 435-658-2665.
The Motet (Zephyr Club, March 16). The Warlocks (Xscape, March 18). Atom & His Package (Kilby Court, March 19). Iron & Wine (Liquid Joe’s, March 19). Garaj Mahal (Port O’ Call, March 20). Tha Alkaholiks (Suede, March 21). Bang Tango (Expose, March 21-22). American Hi-Fi (Xscape, March 22). Rubberneck (Port O’ Call, March 22). Sahara Hotnights, Ikara Colt (Liquid Joe’s, March 26). Keller Williams (Harry O’s, March 26). Fastball (Zephyr Club, March 26). Lynch Mob (Expose, March 28). Drums & Tuba (Dead Goat Saloon, March 29). Ministry (Xscape, April 2). Cheap Trick (Harry O’s, April 4). Rocket From the Crypt (Xscape, April 19). The Mooney Suzuki (Xscape, April 23).