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Originally published August 30, 2013 at 5:04 AM | Page modified August 31, 2013 at 7:22 PM

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Bumbershoot daily highlights

It’s that time of year, when summer slips into fall, which means it’s time for Bumbershoot. See daily highlights of music, theater, visual arts, kids activities and more, below.

Seattle Times staff critic

Festival Preview


11 a.m. to 11:15 p.m. Saturday and Monday and 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday, Seattle Center; $62-$230 per day, $150-$575 three-day pass (discounts on purchases made before midnight Friday). Tickets are good for all venues on a first-come, first-served basis, depending on capacity (no armbands or advance passes, as in the past). Children under 10 admitted free. Active military, veterans, seniors 65 and over and patrons with permanent disabilities (ID required), $30 per day, day of show (206-673-5060 or For comprehensive information about transportation to the festival and other matters, see:

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Bumbershoot, which runs Saturday through Monday, Aug. 31-Sept. 2, has a Seattle-centric musical focus this year, but offers the wide spectrum of the arts programming we’ve come to expect (and perhaps take for granted). The list includes musicians Death Cab for Cutie, fun., Heart, Charles Bradley, The Zombies, Bassnectar and the Joy Formidable; comedians Patton Oswalt, Marc Maron and Reggie Watts; performance art from Annex Theatre’s “puppet-sex musical”; and kid-friendly shows by Brian Vogan and His Good Buddies and the movement games of Little Wing.


11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Seattle Center Pavilion: “Found and Unbound,” group exhibit of artworks that explore found and repurposed objects, featuring Craig Baldwin, Howard Barlow, Justin Beckman and others. Matt Browning, Scott Fife, Sayaka Ganz, Guy Laramee, Shaun Kardinal and Jason Mecier.

11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Seattle Center Pavilion Courtyard: Magic Sync is an interactive installation of music, light and sculpture. By manipulating a control panel, the viewer animates both sculptural and audio elements — in effect, producing a unique remix of the piece.

3:30 p.m. SIFF Film Center: Best of the Seattle International Film Festival jury-award winners.

4:30 p.m. SIFF Film Center: Best of the Seattle International Film Festival audience-award winners.

4:30 p.m. Festival Grounds: Zombie flash mobs. They don’t really eat flesh and they’re a barrel o’ laughs.

6:30 p.m. The Vera Project: Laff Hole Presents: Fresh Faces. This long-running club night features local comedians who have been working throughout Seattle’s burgeoning comedy scene.


1 p.m. The Playhouse: Mike Vecchione, Marc Maron. Maron, who has a top-rated podcast and his own sitcom, is an unflinchingly liberal, unfiltered monologuist who takes no prisoners.

1:15 p.m. Fisher Green: Nacho Picasso. An odd choice for the afternoon, considering his raucous, sometimes crass lyrics, but Seattle hip-hop fans in the know will be singing along to favorites such as “For the Glory” and “Lord of the Fly.”

2:45 p.m. Mural Amphitheatre: Robert Glasper Experiment. With hip-hop momentum and attitude, jazz pianist Glasper has catapulted himself into the popular arena with an original, hard-hitting style.

4 p.m. KeyArena: Kendrick Lamar. Perhaps the only sane performer to appear on this year’s MTV Video Awards, this young rapper produced a gold debut “good kid, m.A.A.d city” and made just about everyone’s year-end best-of lists.

6:15 p.m. Fisher Green: !!! (Chk Chk Chk). Dance pop, a less trancified and threatening experience than bass-booming EDM, is going to be around a while, it seems. And who has come up with a better name to embody that sound than “Chk Chk Chk”?

6:30 p.m. Bagley Wright Theatre: Patton Oswalt. Oswalt’s “Star Wars Filibuster” guest spot on NBC’s “Parks and Recreation” this past season was hilarious. Known variously as the voice of Remy the rat in “Ratatouille” and Spencer Olchin on “King of Queens,” Oswalt returns a sixth time to Bumbershoot.

8 p.m. Mural Amphitheatre: Charles Bradley and His Extraordinaires. The neo-soul revival had to wade through a lot of mediocrity before it finally found a real voice in this James Brown impersonator, who found his own persona.

9 p.m. Fountain Lawn: Washed Out. Sub Pop’s new darling, Ernest Greene (see “Within and Without” combines glossy, wistful melodies with a subdued dance feel.

9:30 p.m. Next 50 Plaza (west of EMP): Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside. Portland’s twisted vintage indie-rock band of the moment combines, jazz, rock and blues with a wink and lots of sass.

9:45 p.m. KeyArena: Heart. Ann and Nancy Wilson are on a roll, after their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the publication of their as-told-to autobiography, “Kicking and Dreaming.” Their performance of “Stairway to Heaven” for Led Zeppelin at the Kennedy Center earlier this year proved they’re still at the top of their game.

9:45 p.m. Mural Amphitheatre: Maceo Parker. And speaking of James Brown, his erstwhile alto sax man, soulmeister Maceo Parker, closes out the Mural Saturday.


12 p.m. Mural Amphitheatre: Ayron Jones and the Way. This Seattle rock band has a lot of soul and grunge and enough hip hop to catch the attention of Sir Mix-A-Lot, who’s producing their first album, out this fall.

12 p.m. Leo K. Theatre: 15 Years of Barsuk Records. The “other” big Seattle label hosts a panel discussion occasioned by its 15th anniversary, with co-founder Josh Rosenfled, musician Sean Nelson and Barsuk roster members John Roderick and David Bazan.

2 p.m. KeyArena: Tegan and Sara. You’ve heard of sisterly harmonies, how about twinsies? Beyond heavenly. This Neil Young-favored duo lives up to the title of its new album, “Heartthrob.”

3 p.m. Mural Amphitheatre: Duke Robillard Band. Bumbershoot has a long tradition of presenting the best of the blues, and guitarist Robillard, whom older fans will recall as a signature and sizzling member of Roomful of Blues, can do it all. With style and grace.

3:30 p.m. KeyArena: fun. This indie-pop sensation moved from modest gigs at Seattle’s Chop Suey to four Grammy nominations this year, not to mention a ubiquitous presence (“We Are Young’) on the TV show “Glee.” And yeah, they’re ... um, fun.

3:30 p.m. Fountain Lawn: David Bazan. No longer Pedro of the highly regarded Pedro the Lion, Barsuk Records artist Bazan brings his rich voice and thoughtful uncertainty to the album “Strange Negotiations.”

5:15 p.m. Armory Theatre (formerly Center House Theatre): Audrey & Nelson: A Sex Puppet Musical. Described as a piece about sex, traffic lights, bad language, broken hearts and private parts, enacted by a pair of racy puppets, this show could be hilarious or simply silly. So you had something else to do before dinner?

5:15 p.m. Fountain Lawn: The Physics. South End Seattle hip hop, with a great live band, especially producer/keyboardist Sam Wishkoski.

6:30 p.m. Bagley Wright Theater: Patton Oswalt. Oswalt’s “Star Wars Filibuster” guest spot on NBC’s “Parks and Recreation” this past season was hilarious. Known variously as the voice of Remy the rat in “Ratatouille” and the character Spencer Olchin in “King of Queens,” Oswalt returns for a sixth visit to Bumbershoot.

8 p.m. Fisher Green: The Breeders. Playing old albums from start to finish seems to be a trend this year, with Death Cab for Cutie dipping into its catalog. This ‘90s college-rock sensation will re-enact its 1993 album, “Last Splash.”

8 p.m. The Playhouse: Mike Vecchione, Marc Maron. Maron, who has a top-rated podcast and his own sitcom, is an unflinchingly liberal, unfiltered monologuist who takes no prisoners.

8:15 p.m. KeyArena: Ra Ra Riot. With a first push from Woodinville producer Ryan Hadlock on its Barsuk debut, “The Rhumb Line,” this Syracuse, N.Y.-born synth-pop sensation has moved on to a sleeker, more futuristic sound on “Beta Love.”

8:15 p.m. Mural Amphitheatre: The Zombies. “She’s Not There,” a song that rivals Tina Turner’s “River Deep, Mountain High” for spine-tingling, dramatic build, is not the only great song this legendary — and now-reunited — English band recorded, or so insist some aficionados, lately riveted by the 1968 album “Odessey and Oracle.”

9:45 p.m. KeyArena: Death Cab for Cutie. Who knew Seattle would produce such smart, silky pop-rock, but there didn’t used to be all those sleek glass and steel buildings, either. In its second headline spot at Bumbershoot — celebrating Barsuk Records’ 15th Anniversary — Ben Gibbard’s bunch will play its album “Transatlanticism” from front to back.

10 p.m. Fisher Green: Matt & Kim. One of the funniest, smartest duos in rock, this slapstick punk band manages to be funny and serious at the same time.


1 p.m. Mural Amphitheatre: The Maldives. Seattle’s favorite folk-rock band, led by Jason Dodson, offers Americana with a winsome smile. You never know how many of ’em will show up, so there are always surprises.

2:45 The Playhouse: Mike Drucker, Joe Mande, Reggie Watts. Older Seattle fans remember Watts, of the very large Afro, as the lead singer for Maktub. But he has since evolved into a first-call comedian, currently starring in IFC’s “Comedy Bang! Bang!” and picked as an opener by Conan O’Brien for his “Prohibited From Being Funny on Television” tour. Drucker writes for Jimmy Fallon; Mande, for “Parks and Recreation.”

3:30 p.m. KeyArena: MGMT. Andrew VanWyngarden and Ben Goldwasser started out poppish in 2007 then twisted the knife, gathering new fans and sending others running for the exits with their mix of psychedelia and Britpop.

6 p.m. Next 50 Plaza (west of EMP): Mark Pickerel and His Praying Hands. Former Screaming Trees drummer Pickerel, who has a new album due shortly, has evolved into a twangy, “All My Friends Are Going to Be Strangers” singer-songwriter of considerable gravity.

6:45 p.m. Bagley Wright Theatre: Patton Oswalt & Friends. Oswalt’s “Star Wars Filibuster” guest spot on NBC’s “Parks and Recreation” this past season was hilarious. Known variously as the voice of Remy the rat in “Ratatouille” and Spencer Olchin on “King of Queens,” Oswalt returns for a sixth visit to Bumbershoot.

7 p.m. Fountain Lawn: Superchunk. These Chapel Hill, N.C., indie rockers have parlayed joyously fast tempos, deft chord changes, gutsy solos and irrepressible hooks into a 25-year career, says Seattle Times music blogger Charlie Zaillian. They’re still rocking hard.

7:30 p.m. Next 50 Plaza (west of EMP): Ivan & Alyosha. OK, so they’re not really Russians (the name comes from Dostoevsky), this Seattle quartet sings and strums buoyant folk rock that zings the strings of the Emerald City.

8 p.m. Mural Amphitheatre: Justin Townes Earle. When a guy is Steve Earle’s son and his middle name comes from Townes Van Zandt, he’s either going to cave under pressure or come up with a heck of a good idea of his own. Singer-songwriter Earle has done the latter.

8 p.m. Fisher Green: Allen Stone. Seattle’s favorite neo-soulster had the honor of headlining this year’s Bumbershoot announcement show. Through hard work and lots of shoe leather he has been slowing gaining a national following.

9 p.m. Fountain Lawn: Deerhunter. At once hazy and pointed, this soft-contoured rock band creates layers of guitar sound and vocals that have earned it a loyal indie following.

10 p.m. Fisher Green: The Joy Formidable. This Welsh duo brought “a bundle of kinetic punk-rock energy” to the Neptune Theatre earlier this year, wrote Seattle Times freelancer Gene Stout. Expect a joyous noise.

9:45 p.m. KeyArena: BASSNECTAR. Throb, wobble, zoink. Last year it was Skrillex, this year Lorin Ashton, aka BASSNECTAR, will be spinning the knobs for the end-of-festival electronic-dance-music capper.

Paul de Barros: 206-464-3247 or

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