NOT JAZZ | Abilene's Late Night Sessions

While downtown is under the Jazz Festival's spell for nine days straight, there will be a pocket of renegades contributing to the sound of music wafting skyward. And it's without a hefty sticker price to get in.

ROCK | ZZ Top

Thankfully, the last couple of ZZ Top records found the band back at its roots: pure, unadulterated, high octane albums, like the classic "Tres Hombres." The band has managed to maintain its cool even in the dark ages of early Empty-V, from which ironically, ZZ Top had its biggest hits.

NOISE | To Live and Shave in L.A.

To Live and Shave in L.A. is an experimental music collective based in Germany that incorporates aggressive noise, avant-garde, and post-punk textures. Founded in the early 90's by composer Tom Smith and producer Frank Falestra, TLASILA released its debut album, "30-Minuten M#nnercreme," in 1994 with the help of oscillator player Ben Wolcott, and has since made dozens of releases featuring various sound artists.

FOLK | Trevor Hall

Colorado-based singer-songwriter Trevor Hall's music is as spiritual as he is. While studying classical guitar at an arts academy in California, Hall was introduced to meditation and yoga, spiritual practices that he would carry with him throughout his musical career. Hall has a scratchy and airy voice with a soulfully tender vibrato, and his music is dreamy and meditative, blending elements of hip-hop, folk, and pop.

SPECIAL EVENT | Make Music Day

Marking the summer solstice with music sounds almost too picturesque. Make Music Rochester on Thursday is organizing an afternoon and evening of free music performances, events, and lessons at various locations around the city.

CLASSICAL | Orchestra in the Pines

There are a lot of summer concerts that give music lovers the chance to get outdoors, and if you keep your eyes open, you'll find almost every landscape put to use, from Ontario Beach Park to the garden at the George Eastman Museum. The annual Orchestra in the Pines concert throws classical music into an idyllic forest setting.

JAZZ | Susan Alcorn

You know the pedal steel guitar: those beautiful sliding chords that shimmer in country music and the talking notes that enliven gospel. Well, you don't know the full scope of the pedal steel until you hear Susan Alcorn take the instrument for a wild ride.

HIP-HOP | Grandmaster Flash

Grandmaster Flash is a visionary legend — he may not be one of the founding fathers of hip-hop, but he's most definitely a pioneer in DJ turntablism. Given his name, Flash, for the quickness of his hands while scratching records, he created the art of looping beats and transitioning through records without a pause.

METAL | The Black Dahlia Murder

It's hard to believe The Black Dahlia Murder has been at it for 16 years and seven albums. Doesn't playing this loud and fast for so long take a toll on the body?

ROOTS | Honeysuckle

Boston folksters Honeysuckle bust out a whole lotta sound for a three-piece outfit. It's literally a loaded freight train of harmony, done up nice and tight.

SOUL | Ruby Velle & The Soulphonics

There's plenty to sing the blues about these days, but chances are, the blues never made you feel this good. Ruby Velle and her Atlanta-based band, The Soulphonics, are the modern riposte to a long neglected, vintage Motown sound.

SOUL | Mingo Fishtrap

Mingo Fishtrap is a six-piece soul-funk band that has been titillating audiences around the world for more than a decade. Based in Austin, Texas, Mingo Fishtrap performs with jocund tenacity.

POP | Transviolet

Originally formed online through a musician networking site, the synth-pop four-piece Transviolet created music Postal Service-style for a year before relocating to Los Angeles to give it a go in person. Lead vocalist Sarah McTaggart sings catchy melodies in a bright and angelic whisper, while the lyrical concepts are dark and seductive.

JAZZ | Hoffman-Lemish Quartet

Amos Hoffman is fluent in many musical genres and equally adept on guitar and oud. Noam Lemish is an excellent pianist who also has broad musical interests.

JAZZ | The Samuel Blaser Trio

Originally from Switzerland, trombonist Samuel Blaser now plies his trade on both sides of the Atlantic, commuting between New York and Berlin. A superb technician, Blaser is capable of making the trombone sing, which lends itself to a wild juxtaposition with brash-toned guitarist Marc Ducret.

METALCORE | Walls of Jericho

Longstanding Detroit bruisers Walls of Jericho is one of the earliest progenitors of a distinctly American style of metalcore, which takes two-step ready rhythms and pumps them full of galloping riffs and pinch harmonics. The band, fronted by Candace Kucsulain, has been doing the damn thing since 1998, and its influence on a rising generation of young metalcore acts, like Code Orange and Sanction, is undeniable.

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