Solid Sound 2017 Preview

Every odd year, acclaimed alt-country hits Wilco head to the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art to throw their Solid Sound Festival, featuring music, comedy, and more. This year it...
Solid Sound

Solid Sound 2017 Preview

Every odd year, acclaimed alt-country hits Wilco head to the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art to throw their Solid Sound Festival, featuring music, comedy, and more. This year it comes Friday-Sunday, June 23rd to 25th:



Courtyard C

DJ Funkhauser, 11:30 PM – 1:00 AM

Nancy & Beth, 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Nancy & Beth is the musical team-up of comedians Megan Mullally (Will & Grace) and Stephanie Hunt. Oh, and considering he’s performing on Saturday at Solid Sound, expect a guest appearance by Mullally’s husband, Nick Offerman (see below).

Nancy & Beth

Courtyard D

Dawn of Midi, 11:15 PM – 12:15 AM

Coming off opening for none other than Radiohead (QRO live review) at Madison Square Garden (QRO venue review) last year, Brooklyn acoustic group Dawn of Midi play the much more intimate Courtyard D on the first day of Solid Sound.

Dawn of Midi

Hunter Center

Alloy Orchestra, 11:30 PM – 12:30 AM

Alloy Orchestra present Man With a Movie Camera on Friday at Solid Sound ’17.

Alloy Orchestra

Joe’s Field

Wilco, 9:15 PM – 11:15 PM

Before they headline Saturday (see below), Wilco do a special set on Friday where they play their alt-country classic, 1996’s Being There, in full.


Dave Alvin & Phil Alvin with The Guilty Ones, 7:45 PM – 8:45 PM




Courtyard C

DJ Funkhauser, 11:30 PM – 1:00 AM

Kevin Morby, 4:45 PM – 5:45 PM

Formerly the bassist for The Woods and frontman for The Babies, songwriter Kevin Morby (QRO photos at a festival) has since struck out on his own, most recently with this month’s City Music.
Kevin Morby

Deep Sea Diver, 3:00 PM – 3:45 PMQRO photos at a festival

The Shaggs, 1:30 PM – 2:15 PM

Kacy & Clayton, 12:00 PM – 12:45 PM

Deep Sea Diver

Courtyard B

Jeff Parker Trio, 11:15 PM – 12:15 AM

Guitarist for famed post-rock group Tortoise (QRO live review), Jeff Parker brings his experimental jazz side to Solid Sound.
Jeff Parker
Robert Glasper Experiment, 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Robert Glasper grew up going to club dates with his mother rather than being left with a babysitter. It’s no wonder he’s grown up into the Robert Glasper Experiment, who won the 2012 Grammy for Best R&B Album for Black Radio.
Robert Glasper
Peter Wolf, 3:45 PM – 4:45 PM

What do you know Peter Wolf (QRO photos at a festival) best from? Lead vocalist for the J. Geils Band? His solo career with writing partner Will Jennings? Being married to Faye Dunaway in the seventies? Whatever it is, it’s an impressive legacy.
Peter Wolf

Big Thief, 2:15 PM – 3:00 PMQRO photos outdoors

Joan Shelley, 12:45 PM – 1:30 PM

Big Thief

Hunter Center

Alloy Orchestra, 11:30 PM – 12:30 AM

Alloy Orchestra present Page of Madness on Saturday at Solid Sound ’17.
Alloy Orchestra
The Show Show, 4:30 PM – 6:00 PM

‘The Show Show’ comes with Jean Grae & DJ Qualle Chris – and “Jean’s actual cousin,” Parks & Recreations’ Nick Offerman (see below).
The Show Show
John Hodgman, Harl Kondabolu, Eugene Mirman, 2:15 PM – 3:45 PM

Topping the bill at both stand-up sets at Solid Sound is John Hodgman. Of course you first saw him playing the lame PC to Justin Long’s cool Mac in those Apple “Get a Mac” commercials, but he’s done everything from be the ‘resident rich jerk’ correspondent on The Daily Show to hosting the White House Correspondent’s Dinner to playing the dastardly Internal Affairs agent (who’s really a Russian spy) on Blindspot. Just get him to tell his awesome story about him and musician Jonathan Coulton (QRO photos) getting high and going to an illegal swimming hole…

The alt-comedy world of today gets a whole lot of exposure at Solid Sound, including the man (QRO spotlight on) who maybe did more than anyone else to found it, stand-up artist Eugene Mirman (QRO photos). He’s no stranger to sharing a stage with musicians, such as opening for She & Him (QRO live review) and previously (QRO photos) for the first performance by Julian Plenti (QRO live review of that show), a.k.a. Paul Banks of Interpol (QRO live review). He’s also no stranger to festivals, as he’s thrown his own comedy festival in Brooklyn for years now (QRO recap). Oh, and he’s Gene Belcher on FOX’s Bob’s Burgers (which has its own new album of musical numbers out).

Mirman (QRO interview) comes to Solid Sound behind his mammoth 2015 release (on music label Sub Pop), I’m Sorry (You’re Welcome), which features everything from stand-up to over 45 minutes of crying, 195 orgasms, a lesson in Russian, and much more (QRO photos from the album release party).
John Hodgman

Eugene Mirman

John Hodgman, Michelle Buteau, Nick Offerman, 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM

Having achieved most of his notoriety as the ultimate man’s man Ron Swanson on NBC’s Parks and Recreation, Nick Offerman is on a quest to show that… actually to show that there’s not much difference between himself and his beloved television character. Owning and operating his own woodshop and sporting his epic facial hair the entire time, he has become quite the force to be reckoned with [note: he’s not !!!’s Nic Offer, man… – QRO interview].

Nick Offerman

Joe’s Field

Wilco, 9:15 PM – 11:15 PM

For alt-country, there’s pretty much Wilco (QRO live review outdoors), and then there’s everybody else. The Chicago stars, led by singer/songwriter Jeff Tweedy (see above), but also featuring bassist John Stirratt, multi-instrumentalist Pat Sansone (the two of whom also form The Autumn Defense – see below, guitarist Nels Cline (see below), drummer Glenn Kotche, pianist Mikael Jorgensen, and more (like “Jesus, Etc.” – QRO video), have played everywhere from Conan at home to “Far, Far Away” (QRO video). They’ve also been excellent for so long (QRO live review outdoors) that their set lists are mammoth (QRO live review) and still can’t cover everything (QRO live review) from the late greats like “I’m the Man Who Loves You” (QRO video) to more recent material off of Sky Blue Sky (QRO review), Wilco (The Album) (QRO review), The Whole Love (QRO review), Star Wars (QRO review), and Schmilco (QRO review), like “Hate It Here” (QRO video). The quintessential American band (QRO live review) comes to headline their Solid Sound ’17 (QRO photos at a festival), so look for the full Wilco (QRO live review), as they play it all (QRO live review) and their festival (QRO photos at a festival last weekend).
Kurt Vile & The Violators, 7:30 PM – 8:30 PM

Even amongst all the lo-fi guitar-punks out there, Kurt Vile (QRO photos at a festival) has made a name for himself. The former member of The War On Drugs (QRO live review), Kurt Vile has since formed his own ensemble with his Violators, and contributed to/opened for alt-punk guitar god J Mascis (of Dinosaur Jr. – QRO live review) on his solo record, Several Shades of Why (QRO review), and subsequent tour. However, he’s since evolved into a big frontman of his own (QRO live review) with 2013’s Wakin On a Pretty Daze and 2014’s b’lieve I’m goin down…, including at festivals (QRO photos at a festival).
Kurt Vile & The Violators
Television, 5:30 PM – 6:30 PM

From nineteen seventies rock scene that produced everyone from The Ramones to The Talking Heads, Television defined its auteur edge in guitarists Tom Verlaine and Richard Lloyd and debut Marquee Moon (QRO photos at a festival playing Marque Moon). They broke up in 1978, with sporadic reunions since then, until Lloyd’s health issues forced him to retire after a 2007 show at Central Park SummerStage (QRO venue review). However, Verlaine, drummer Billy Ficca, bassist Fred Smith, and new guitarist Jimmy Rip have kept on going (QRO photos at a festival), with a new album rumored.


Bread & Puppet, 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Bread & Puppet, 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM


Building 10, 3rd Floor

Story Pirates, 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Story Pirates, 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM

Story Pirates, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM

Story Pirates

Pop Up Performances

Jim Elkington, 4:40 PM, Building 5, 2nd Floor

Jake Xerxes Fussell, 4:30 PM, Building 6, Mezzanine

Joan Shelley, 4:20 PM, Building 4

surprise performer, 3:50 PM, Building 6, 2nd Floor

Kacy & Clayton, 3:30 PM, Build 6, 2nd Floor

surprise performer, 3:10 PM, Building 6, 2nd Floor

Max Hatt & Eddie Glass, 3:00 PM, Building 6, Mezzanine

Jake Xerxes Fussell, 2:50 PM, Building 5A, 2nd Floor

Jeff Parker, 2:30 PM, Building 15

surprise performer, 2:10 PM, Building 15

surprise performer, 1:50 PM, Building 6, 2nd Floor

Phil & Dave Alvin, 1:30 PM, Building 5, 2nd Floor
Jake Xerxes Fussell

Jeff Parker




Courtyard C

The Autumn Defense, 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM

Begun as a side-project by John Stirratt of Saturday headliner Wilco, The Autumn Defense (QRO spotlight on) have become something much more since recruiting Wilco multi-instrumentalist Pat Sansone (QRO interview with both). Their sound (QRO live review) is so sweet that it doesn’t need to rock, like most recently with 2014’s Fifth (QRO review).
The Autumn Defense


Story Pirates, 12:45 PM – 1:30 PM

Daniel Bachman, 11:15 AM – 12:00 PM

Story Pirates

Courtyard B

Nels Cline Four, 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Wilco guitarist Nels Cline (QRO photos) is pretty much one of the greatest guitarists around right now – just witness his impossibly good solo on “Impossible Germany”. At Solid Sound he has an addition appearance with his more experimental jazz ‘Nels Cline Four’.
Nels Cline

On Fillmore, 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM

Andy Shauf, 12:00 PM – 12:45 PM

Andy Shauf

Hunter Center

Quinder, 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Mark Bittman: NY Times Food Editor, 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM

Mark Bittman

Joe’s Field

Tweedy & Friends, 5:00 PM – 6:30 PM

After he headlines Saturday as frontman for Wilco, Jeff Tweedy brings his solo performance to close out at Solid Sound ’17. Well, actually it’s a team-up with another Tweedy, his son & drummer Spencer, who together in 2014 put out Sukierae – and billed as “& Friends”…


Idris Ackamoor & The Pyramids, 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM


Building 10, 3rd Floor

Max Hatt & Edda Glass, 2:45 PM – 3:30 PM

Gustafer Yellowgold, 1:45 PM – 2:30 PM
Gustafer Yellowgold



For festival website, go here: