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The Sundance ASCAP Music Cafe is a eight-day concert series providing a respite from the cold and having to watch another artsy-fartsy film. Here are two spotlight shows among the lineup although the concerts are only open, as space allows, for Sundance credential-holders.
Julia Fordham and Paul Reiser • Friday and Saturday, Jan. 21 and 22, at 4 p.m. at the Sundance ASCAP Music Cafe at Stanfield Fine Art, 751 Main St., Park City.
Actor Paul Reiser is also a classically trained pianist who studied music composition before embarking on a career in comedy. He was struck by Fordham's vocal intensity and immediacy while listening to the British singer-songwriter on the radio. Later, in an interview, he stated he was a fan, and when Fordham heard that, she called to thank him. Seven years later, the pair bumped into each other at a movie theater, and Reiser mentioned he was writing some music. Would she mind coming over to write a song with him? "He was very charming," Fordham said. "It's true," Reiser responded in a joint interview. "I am." So she went over to his house, and before they knew it, they had written enough songs for an album, "Unusual Suspects," which was released last year. "This is not going to be Lady Gaga," Reiser said. "This is very adult."
Josh Ritter •Friday, Jan. 21, at 2:40 p.m., Sundance ASCAP Music Cafe, 751 Main St., Park City.
Ritter is touring to support "So Runs the World Away," a hyperliterate collection of acoustic songs that includes "The Curse," a heartbreaking song about a mummy who falls in love with the archaeologist who discovers him. The song was inspired by his love of museums in his new home of New York City. "There's always something fantastic in them," the singer said. "It could be an exhibition on hydroelectric power, and I'm in." There weren't many museums to explore in his native Idaho. "I'm really glad I started there," he said. "There's a value in learning to entertain yourself. I had the free time to obsess over the guitar." Ritter is salivating at coming to Park City, with the chance to experience a different kind of art. "I spend a lot of time at music festivals, at the expense of other things," he said.
To help you see and hear your favorite rock stars during the Sundance Film Festival, here's a list of some of the highest-profile concerts.
Harry Belafonte • The "King of Calypso" is featured in the Sundance documentary "Sing Your Song" and will be at the Bing Bar, Jan. 22-23.
Jeff "Skunk" Baxter • The guitarist for Steely Dan and the Doobie Brothers performs at House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 20.
Charlie Colin • The bass player for Train performs at House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 20.
Brett Dennen • The singer-songwriter performs at BMI Snowball / Kimball Art Center, Jan. 26.
Zooey Deschanel • The member of She & Him, who also stars in Sundance film "My Idiot Brother," is at the Bing Bar, Jan. 22.
Dirty Heads • Performs at House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 28.
Lauryn Hill • Performs at Harry O's, Jan. 26.
Kaskade • The world-renowned DJ performs at Harry O's, Jan. 28.
Jonny Lang • The blues guitarist performs at House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 20.
Lil Jon • Performs at Harry O's, Jan. 20.
Carole King • A subject of the Sundance doc "Troubadours" performs at Cisero's, Jan. 23.
Janelle Monet • The soul singer nominated for two 2011 Grammys performs at Bing Sundance After-Party at the Bing Bar, Jan. 21.
Neon Trees • House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 19.
Stephen Perkins • The drummer for Jane's Addiction, Porno for Pyros performs at Harry O's, Jan. 19.
Pussycat Dolls • House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 21.
Robert Randolph and the Family Band • House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 24.
Lou Reed • Also at Sundance as director of the short "Red Shirley," performs at Kimball Art Center, Jan. 23.
Paul Reiser •The "Mad About You," "My Two Dads" star will perform with Julia Fordham at Stanfield Art Gallery, Jan. 21 and 22.
Josh Ritter • Stanfield Art Gallery, Jan. 21.
The Roots • Harry O's, Jan. 22.
Slash • The member of Guns 'N Roses, Velvet Revolver plays party host at House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 23.
Snoop Dogg • Harry O's, Jan. 20
Third Eye Blind • House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 22
Ronnie Vannucci Jr. • The drummer for The Killers performs at House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 20.
The Wailers • House of Blues Foundation Room, Jan. 27.
Bob Weir • Performs at the Sundance ASCAP Music Cafe at Stanfield Art Gallery, Jan. 23.
Music on the go
For concert updates, visit David Burger's music blog, Burger With Relish, at blogs.sltrib.com/burger.