- Steve Klinge
Bonnie "Prince" Billy, with Michael Chapman, plays at 7:30 p.m. Sunday at the Trocadero, 1003 Arch St. Tickets: $20 in advance; $22 on the date of show. Information: 215-922-6888, www.thetroc.com.
If you find yourself swaying and swooning to the supple genre-shifting sounds of adventurous jazz vocal aesthetes such as Melody Gardot and Gretchen Parlato, then Ms. Jackie Ryan should hold a place near and dear to your record collection. With the dexterity of a latter-day Sarah Vaughn, Ryan (with Mexican, Spanish, and French in her bloodline) tackles the Great American Songbook with the same ease she brings to theater tunes, bossa nova ballads, freewheeling bolero, and wilder fare. Ryan has shown that sort of flair for diversity since her recorded start, a live For Heaven's Sake from 2000 and the alluringly strange Passion Flower in 2002. All of Ryan's albums costar the very best of contributors, from harpist Carol Robbins and guitarist Larry Koonse on You and the Night and the Music to pianist Cyrus Chestnut and six-stringer Romero Lubambo on Doozy. That most recent album, Doozy, is exactly that, a jam-packed two-disc oddball on which the sweet improvisationalist leaps from the cabaret cool of Kurt Weill to the dramatic art-jazz of Bernstein/Comden/Green to bop, Brazilian song, and beyond with her own distinct stamp. Though she is underestimated by some and ignored by others, Jackie Ryan's time is right now.
- A.D. Amorosi
Jackie Ryan and the Larry McKenna Quartet play at 8 and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Chris' Jazz Cafe, 1421 Sansom St. Tickets: $15, $20, and $25. Information: 215-568-3131, www.chrisjazzcafe.com.
Joe Ely, Butch Hancock, and Jimmie Dale Gilmore are out on the road for what they are calling their 40th-anniversary tour. Once famously tagged "more a legend than a band," the Flatlanders were rejected by the country-music establishment in the early '70s before the three core members all went on to do stellar solo work. These Lone Star compadres have distinct talents - Ely's the rocking dynamo, Hancock's the Dylanesque bard, and Gilmore's the singer with the Rudy Vallee warble and mystical bent - but over the years they have continued to coalesce marvelously when they reunite. August will see the release of The Odessa Tapes, which chronicles the group's first recordings, made in Texas in 1972.
- Nick Cristiano
The Flatlanders will play at 8 p.m. Thursday at the Sellersville Theater, 24 W. Temple Ave., Sellersville. Tickets: $35. Information: 215-257-5808.