The best thing about a good song is that it can be heartbroken with you, and musician Neko Case makes those kinds of songs; the ones that haunt you so much that they become your go-to for a bad day or a particularly brutal hangover. Soulful folk pours from her lips and fingers, and all you can do is listen as she convinces you that music can be the greatest soother. The Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter started her career in the Pacific Northwest punk scene that proliferated in Seattle and Vancouver (where she graduated from Emily Carr University of Art and Design in 1998) and, aside from her solo career, she is best known for vocal contributions to the Canadian punk group The New Pornographers. Just don’t roll up to the Santa Fe Opera expecting an angsty post-punk performance, and don’t be dismayed at the lack of mosh pit. Case solo is a folky siren who sings your own emotions and expresses them better than you ever could. She knows what we are feeling and she lays those emotions bare for her audience to hear. “Now I’ve freezing hands and bloodless veins/As numb as I’ve become,” she croons on “I Wish I Was The Moon” from 2002’s Blacklisted, and we know that however she wound up numb, she earned it. Case operates as if the legendary Linda Ronstadt and Stevie Nicks had a magical unicorn baby that possessed only the best of each and the compounded collective of both their cool factors. And so, if you’re losing it existentially, try playing a little Case. She may show you that things aren’t as bad as they seem or, failing that, she may just cry right along with you. The rock goddess graces SFO for the 2016 St. Vincent Hospital Foundation Annual Gala, which supports Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center. The Jay Farrar Trio, an act born of alt.Americana heroes Son Volt, opens. If you’re flush with cash and feel like supporting a cause, you can also attend the fancy dinner event (concert included) for $250 a pop. (Maria Egolf-Romero)
Neko Case with
The Jay Farrar Trio
7:30 pm Saturday Sept. 17. $33-$82.
Santa Fe Opera,
301 Opera Drive,
Cowboy UpFor some, the vast majority of country-Western music has sucked since, like, the 1980s, but we can always ignore the monstrous neo-country jerks to focus on the pure gold of yesteryear. That’s what Riders in the Sky are all about. Equal parts country-Western, swing and humor, this goofy cowboy quartet keeps the musicianship stellar without all that pesky seriousness. For their upcoming Santa Fe show, the Riders will pay homage to the great Roy Rogers, a man who wrote so many songs that helped define our cultural zeitgeist it’s almost criminal. That would make this-here show what we call win/win. (Alex De Vore)
Riders in the Sky Salute to Roy Rogers:
7:30 pm Wednesday Sept. 14. $20.
Lensic Performing Arts Center,
211 W San Francisco St.,
Spectacle ArtisanRichard Tuschman’s gorgeous photography sits somewhere between detailed reality and dreamlike make-believe, and his current series, Once Upon a Time in Kazmierz, tells an almost hidden story that requires a sharp eye to fully decipher. “The sets are actually miniature sets that I make,” the artist tells SFR. “I photograph the people against a plain background and the sets in my studio, and I combine them.” You can see the 17 storybook images that comprise Tuschman’s self-described “photographic novella” this Friday. “It’s about a Jewish family that lives in Krakow,” he says. “They suffer a horrible tragedy, and it’s about how their grief kind of tears them apart.” (MER)
Behind Closed DoorsHow many movies, stories or YA books are about parts of museums to which the public doesn’t usually have access? Yeah, it’s a lot, and apparently the New Mexico Museum of Art is well aware of this and has planned accordingly. Upstairs/Downstairs gives curious parties a behind-the-scenes look into the downtown museum’s storage and research facilities and there’s even an arts and crafts project for the young-uns to enjoy. Might we also recommend checking out the Con Cariño lowrider exhibit while you’re over there getting the VIP treatment? (ADV)
Upstairs/Downstairs: Behind-the-Scenes at the Art Museum:
1 pm Sunday Sept. 18. Free.
New Mexico Museum of Art,
107 W Palace Ave.,