This week marks the kickoff for a few local concert series.
And even better, it’s a great time for duck fanatics.
Gym Class Heroes frontman Travie McCoy, Michael Jackson tribute group Who’s Bad and indie rockers Speedy Ortiz are all putting on free shows in the Capital Region this week, while other notable acts like Dead & Company and Keith Sweat are taking the stage at SPAC and Rivers Casino & Resort.
But if music isn’t your thing, and you’re more of a rubber duck enthusiast, don’t worry. The Capital Region, somehow, has you covered.
Jazz on Jay: Golfstrom
Thursday at 12 p.m., Jay Street Arcade, FREE
If you’re looking for a worldly musical experience this week, look no further.
Local group Golfstrom will perform an eclectic mix of ’30-’60s folk and pop songs today on Jay Street, with musical origins from all over the world.
The group, consisting of Jonathan Greene on clarinet, Sergei Nirenburg on accordion and vocals and Bobby Kendall on string bass, has a catalogue of tracks from Russia, France, Italy, Ukraine, Israel and beyond. The group just played Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs this March and was recently nominated for a NY Capital Region Thomas Edison Music Award for “International/World Music Artist of the Year.”
Today’s performance will mark the second show of this year’s annual Jazz on Jay concert series.
Alive at 5: Travie McCoy with Stellar Young
Thursday at 5 p.m., Corning Preserve Boat Launch, Albany, FREE
Travie McCoy, the creative force behind beloved ’00s punk band Gym Class Heroes, is taking his arsenal of punk and pop hits to Corning Preserve for the second show in Albany’s free Alive at 5 concert series (the show has already been moved to the rain site).
While McCoy won’t be bringing pop heavyweight Bruno Mars with him for a performance of their 2010 collaboration “Billionaire,” fans should still expect to hear the No. 4 Billboard hit, as well as McCoy’s other No. 4 smash “Stereo Hearts.”
Aside from rapping on some of 2010 and 2011’s biggest pop tracks, McCoy is also known in the punk scene for Gym Class Heroes’ catalogue, including track “Cupid’s Chokehold” featuring Fall Out Boy’s Patrick Stump. McCoy hasn’t released an album, solo or with Gym Class Heroes, since the group’s 2011 “The Papercut Chronicles II,” but that just means there’s more room for throwback hits for fans of McCoy’s chart toppers.
Local band Stellar Young will set the stage for the rapper, playing through some of their indie-rock and post-punk cuts. The group’s 2016 hit “Double Lives,” in all its synthy glory, boasts nearly 250,000 Spotify streams.
Rock the Block: Who’s Bad
Thursday at 6:30 p.m., Canal Square, Cohoes, FREE
Cohoes’ nine-week Rock the Block concert series kicked off last week, but this week, it’s getting a little sparkle.
Who’s Bad, a Michael Jackson tribute experience founded in 2003 and the only Jackson tribute to predate the pop star’s death, will take the stage at Canal Square today.
The group consists of dancer and singer James Times, singer Malcolm Little, drummer Archie Logan, trumpeter Ray McCall and saxophonist Aaron McCoy among others. The group’s catalog consists of tracks like “Bad,” “Human Nature” and “Smooth Criminal” and its on-stage attire highlights sequins, sequins and, well, more sequins.
Fridays at the Lake: Kristen Capolino with Better Off Led
Friday at 6 p.m., Shepard Park, Lake George, FREE
Woodstock resident and guitarist Kristen Capolino will take her shredding skills to Shepard Park for a free show on Friday. Capolino will kick off the annual Fridays at the Lake series with Better Off Led at 6 p.m.
Capolino, born in Romania, is influenced by artists like Carlos Santana and Al DiMeola. She previously opened for such as UFO, Bret Michaels and Blue Oyster Cult.
The free event will include a beer and wine tent and children’s activities.
Friday at 8 p.m., Rivers Casino & Resort, Schenectady, Starting at $40
Keith Sweat may no longer be wearing big suits or chains outside of his sweaters, but the singer will surely bring his iconic ’90s R&B keyboard melodies to the Rivers Casino on Friday.
Sweat, notable for his hits “Twisted” and “I’ll Give All My Love To You,” is taking his crooning and smoothness to Schenectady this week. Sweat boasts six No. 1’s on the Billboard R&B charts and is the winner of the 1997 American Music Award for Favorite Male R&B/Soul Artist.
If you love R&B, you don’t want to miss this show.
The 4th Annual Duck Derby for Autism
Saturday at 11 a.m., Mohawk Harbor, Schenectady, $5-$50
The Capital Region might make history this weekend.
Organizers are hoping that about 3,000 people will be lined up outside Mohawk Harbor wearing swim caps Saturday to break the Guiness World Record for the largest gathering of people wearing swim caps.
The event ties in with Schenectay’s annual Duck Derby for Autism, where hundreds of adopted rubber ducks are launched into the river and race to the finish. The proceeds go to the Autism Society of the Greater Capital Region, and the event hosts are looking forward to participants making history at the Adirondack Aquatic Center. You can adopt a duck at asgcr.org.
Saturday at 8 p.m., Mass MoCA, $22 students and advance, $32 day of
Nigerian singer-songwriter Bombino comes to Mass MoCa on Saturday, playing cuts from his most-recent record, 2018’s “Duran,” which earned him a 2019 Grammy nomination.
The singer has previously worked with The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach and The New York Times praised his skills, saying “few performers have wielded the guitar with such mastery and majesty.”
The show is set to take place at the museum’s courtyard and depending on weather, may take place in the Hunter Center.
Albany’s Dad Fest
Sunday at 1 p.m., Washington Park
Dad shoes and dad hats may be back in style this summer, but dads never went out of style.
And to celebrate all the stylish dads this Father’s Day, Albany is putting on its fifth annual Dad Fest, featuring all the things dads love: a car show, food vendors, and of course, a Tom Petty tribute band.
The event kicks off at Washington Park at 1 p.m. with a “Classic Car Show” presented by Keeler Motor Car and wraps up at 6 p.m. with a performance from Refugee: The Ultimate Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers Experience.
Dead & Company
Tuesday at 7p.m., SPAC, $49.50 GA Lawn
One of the greatest live bands of all time is teaming up with guitar virtuoso John Mayer yet again this summer to take over SPAC.
While Mayer has a show of his own at the Times Union Center in July and will surely bring some “New Light” to the arena, fans should expect to hear Grateful Dead tracks and prolonged jam sessions from a few legendary performers on Tuesday, among them: Bob Weir and Mickey Hart.
This is the fifth time the group will make its way to the Capital District, and its fourth show at SPAC.
Freedom Park Summer Concert Series: Scotia-Glenville High School jazz
Wednesday at 7 p.m., Freedom Park, Scotia, FREE
Pack your lawn chair and head over to Scotia on Wednesday for a night of jazz.
The SGHS jazz band and combo will be performing at 7 p.m. to kick off Scotia’s annual Freedom Park Summer Concert Series. The series takes place on the Mohawk River and the amphitheater has sat in that location since 1976, so expect some scenic views while listening to the tunes.
The traditional big-band-sounding group consists of roughly 20 members, according to the SGHS website, and the group meets to practice once a week, so this should be a good opportunity to support local young musicians.
Rockin’ on the River: Speedy Ortiz with Geoff Gordon and Hate Club
Wednesday at 5 p.m., Riverfront Park, Troy, FREE
Indie band Speedy Ortiz comes to Troy on Wednesday for the second show of this year’s Rockin’ on the River concert series.
The Massachusetts-born group has been at it since 2011 and has since released three full-length albums. The group’s most popular track, “No Belo” has over 6.5 million Spotify streams and the group’s most recent record, “Twerp Verse,” made waves in the indie scene back in 2018.
Geoff Gordon, who dedicated his last Bandcamp song “All Faith” to “all the parking meters in Potsdam, NY,” and Albany band Hate Club will open the show.