The Getty Center
Martha Wainwright, performer at a past Saturday Nights at the Getty

Saturday Nights at the Getty (formerly Friday Nights at the Getty) is a free, contemporary performance series featuring an eclectic mix of music, dance, theater, and spoken word events.

All performances take place in the Harold M. Williams Auditorium at the Getty Center. Parking is $10 after 5:00 p.m.

Next in the series

 

William Tyler

Date: Saturday, May 10, 2014
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Location: Harold M. Williams Auditorium
Admission: Free; reservations required, limit of four seats per reservation. Tickets available beginning Tuesday, April 22, 2014 at 9:00 a.m.

William Tyler is a Nashville-based guitarist who has spent the last several years recording and touring with Silver Jews and Lambchop, among others. In 2010 Tyler struck out on his own to record "Behold the Spirit," which was celebrated by Pitchfork as "the most vital, energized album by an American solo guitarist in a decade or more." His latest project, "Impossible Truth," was inspired by two books: Barney Hoskyns's Hotel California, which chronicles the Laurel Canyon music scene of the early 1970s, and Mike Davis's The Ecology of Fear, a sociologist's take on the history of the destruction of Los Angeles via real and imagined disasters. The simultaneous tackling of these tomes led Tyler to build an instrumental narrative inspired by the promise and psychosis of Southern California, producing an atmosphere of apocalyptic expectation and bittersweet nostalgia.


Most recently in the series

Andy Prieboy: A Thousand Gorgeous Lies: A Musical Dissertation on the Inevitable Collision Course of Rock and Romance
March 1, 2014
Working with influences as diverse as Irving Berlin, Ray Davies, Kurt Weill, and W. S. Gilbert, singer-songwriter Andy Prieboy's 30-year career has included recording three albums with Wall of Voodoo, and solo albums with songs covered by Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt and Concrete Blonde. He went on to create the acclaimed comic rock oratorio "White Trash Wins Lotto" and publish the novel The Psycho Ex Game. Most recently he completed a successful residency at the Steve Allen Theater that featured his talents as a songwriter, storyteller, and wiseacre.


Write Now Poetry Society presents Six Impossible Things
October 26, 2013
Luminaries of contemporary poetry and spoken word showcase new work inspired by the photographs of Abelardo Morell. Produced in collaboration with the Write Now Poetry Society, these performances are interwoven with lush live music and dance to create an ecstatic exploration where the visual and literary arts collide. The evening is hosted by Write Now founders, Amber Tamblyn and Mindy Nettifee, and participants include poets Beau Sia, Corrina Bain, Jack Hirschman, Jennifer L. Knox, Joshua Marie Wilkinson, Sonya Renee, and Narcissister.


Armenian Public Radio
February 23, 2013
Armenian Public Radio breathes new life into traditional Armenian songs by weaving a blend of blues and American folk-lead riffs with Anatolian rhythms and silver vocal lines. Influenced by the Beatles, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, and Simon and Garfunkel, the trio polishes away the grit from village songs and reinterprets them with modern sensibilities.


Petra Haden
January 26, 2013
Petra Haden's wondrous new album Petra Goes to the Movies features epic and evocative scores that have been ingeniously recreated utilizing layers of remarkably inventive vocals. Joined by a 16 member choir, Haden delivers stunning a cappella versions of songs from films such as Psycho, Taxi Driver, Superman and more.


Cold Specks
November 17, 2012
At only 23 years old, the soulful voice of Cold Specks's lead singer, Al Spx, which is complemented by her talented six-piece band, has a beautiful, experienced sound. Cold Specks's "doom-soul" style, as she describes it, is timeless and raw, offering a sense of peacefulness and meditation for listeners. In May 2012, Cold Specks released their debut album, I Predict a Graceful Expulsion. Filled with tales of redemption, prayer, faith, and loss, Al Spx's songs are delivered with an earthy, gospel-like power. She resembles the superstars of her style, such as Mahalia Jackson and Sister Rosetta Tharpe, and is inspired by legends Bill Callahan and Tom Waits. Al Spx and her band are sure to leave you wanting more.


Abigail Washburn
March 31, 2012
Singer-songwriter Abigail Washburn performed in the tradition of American old-time music. The Nashville-based clawhammer-banjo player paired venerable folk elements with far-flung sounds, and the results felt both strangely familiar and unlike anything anybody's ever heard before.

Read the Los Angeles Times' review of the concert.


Los Angeles Free Music Society
December 3, 2011
Influential experimental-music anarchists Los Angeles Free Music Society have had an immeasurable impact on the spread and evolution of noise, avant-garde music, and DIY culture in the past 40 years. This live program included ensemble performances by Extended Organ, Le Forte Four, Smegma, and a solo performance by Tom Recchion. This event was part of Pacific Standard Time at the Getty Center.


An Invitation with Inara George and Van Dyke Parks
November 5, 2011
Two Los Angeles musical legends from different generations came together for an unforgettable evening of sonic confections. Van Dyke Parks has played with almost everyone that matters in modern music—from the Beach Boys to U2 by way of the Grateful Dead, Ringo Starr, and the Byrds. Inara George is the lilting voice behind the indie-rock duo the Bird and the Bee. Joining them in the performance was a chamber orchestra led by concert master Peter Kent. This event was part of Pacific Standard Time at the Getty Center.


Dark Blushing
September 10, 2011
Presented in collaboration with Write Now Poetry Society, Dark Blushing was a unique evening of poetry, music, and art featuring some of the brightest stars in contemporary poetry—Patricia Smith, Ilya Kaminsky, Jeffrey McDaniel, Rachel McKibbens, Brendan Constantine, and Suzanne Lummis—all presenting new work inspired by the exhibition Luminous Paper: British Watercolors and Drawings.

Their performances were accompanied by the lush live music of Portland artist Timmy Straw, whose work combines classical training on piano and strings with electronic beats and loops. Legendary jazz bassist Roberto Miranda also joined the line-up and added his dynamic improvisations to the live readings. Iconoclast Marilyn Manson made a special appearance reading the poetry of William Blake, and Dante Gabriel Rossetti's work was read by actress America Ferrera. The poet-artists Blake and Rossetti's drawings are featured in the Museum's exhibition. Hosted by actress and author Amber Tamblyn and poet Mindy Nettifee.

Read a recap of the show and download the full text of all the poems on our blog, The Iris.


Kristin Hersh presents Rat Girl Live
April 9, 2011
Best known as the lead singer and songwriter for the seminal American art-rock band Throwing Muses, Kristin Hersh brought the American debut of Rat Girl live to the Getty. This solo spoken-word and musical performance draws from Hersh's life as a teenager wrestling with issues of mental illness, creativity, teenage pregnancy, and the pressures of sudden fame. Combining film, music, and excerpts from her acclaimed memoir, the show is an intense, moving, and original experience.


The Nels Cline Singers with Yuka C. Honda
February 5, 2011
One of the most versatile, imaginative and original guitarists active today, Nels Cline displayed a mastery of guitar expression that encompasseed delicate lyricism, sonic abstractions, and skull-crunching flights of fancy. Cline brought his latest trio, the Nels Cline Singers to the Getty along with multi-instrumentalist Yuka C. Honda of Cibo Matto.

Music Sample
Hear an excerpt from "Floored" from The Nels Cline Singers CD
Initiate (Cryptogramophone, 2010).



Stew and The Negro Problem
October 30, 2010
Stew, the Tony-award winning writer, performer, and philosophical wiseguy rock artist behind the hit Broadway musical, Passing Strange, returns to the Getty with his longtime collaborator Heidi Rodewald and their ensemble, The Negro Problem, for the first time since 2005. With an incisive, bravura performance featuring their signature lyrics and genre-bending arrangements, this multi-media concert presentation is not to be missed.


Micachu and the Shapes
April 17, 2010
Equally at ease composing for orchestras and mixing multi-layered mash-ups, the enigmatic and classically trained British musician Mica Levi fronts the experimental pop trio Micachu and the Shapes. Their boundary-blurring sound brilliantly merges hip-hop-tinged beats, rock guitar, found samples, singalong melodies, and homemade instruments, including Levi's signature adapted guitar, the Chu.

Music Sample
Hear an excerpt from "Golden Phone" from Micachu and the Shapes CD
Jewellery (Rough Trade, 2009).



Rana Santacruz
March 27, 2010
Mexican Bluegrass meets Irish Mariachi in Rana Santacruz's rock- and folk-inspired music. Featuring cajón, upright bass, accordion, guitar, banjo, jarana, violin, and trumpet, Santacruz starts in Ireland, runs through Appalachia, swings through New Orleans, and careens across Mexico with an eclectic mix of acoustic instrumentation.

Music Sample
Hear an excerpt from "No Puedo Mas" from Rana Santacruz's CD
Chicavasco (2009).



The Living Sisters
March 13, 2010
Los Angeles-based singer/songwriters Inara George (The Bird and the Bee), Becky Stark (Lavender Diamond) and Eleni Mandell joined together as The Living Sisters for their debut album Love to Live. The accomplished trio embrace their mutual love of country, soul, gospel, and jazz with their signature gorgeous harmonies, poetically charged lyrics and sing-along choruses backed by retro pop instrumentation.

Music Sample
Hear an excerpt from "Ferris Wheel" from The Living Sisters's CD
Love to Live (Vanguard Records, 2010).



Money Mark & Emily Wells
February 27, 2010
Violinist and singer Emily Wells loves rap music and Vivaldi. Money Mark (Mark Nishita) is a musician and producer who transformed the sound of the Beastie Boys. From these unique perspectives, the two artists came together for a special collaborative performance, where classical roots met up with hip-hop rhythms, looped violin melodies, and a special cell phone ring tone symphony.

Music Sample
Hear an excerpt from "Chocochip" from Money Mark's CD
Change Is Coming (2001).

Music Sample
Hear an excerpt from "Symphony 6: Fare Thee Well and the Requiem Mix" from Emily Wells' CD Dirty (2009).



The Refugees
May 30, 2009
The three women who form the Refugees—Cindy Bullens, Deborah Holland, and Wendy Waldman—demonstrated their mastery of a variety of musical styles including country, rock, folk, and Americana, as well as their soaring harmonies, indelible musicianship, and unforgettably humorous stage presence.


Dustin O'Halloran
May 9, 2009
In this rare live performance, O'Halloran brought his meditative approach to piano composition the stage, accompanied by string musicians and framed by a moving backdrop of live video.


John Doe and Exene Cervenka
April 25, 2009
This concert was a rare opportunity for John Doe and Exene Cervenka, with no additional musicians, to showcase their decades-long collaborative songwriting and singing partnership. They performed material from their solo projects as well as from the Knitters and X.

Music Sample
Hear an excerpt from "Hotel Ghost" from John Doe's CD A Year in the Wilderness (2007, Yep Roc Records).



Peter Himmelman
March 7, 2009
Peter Himmelman—critically lauded rock troubadour, Grammy-nominated creator of children's music, and Emmy-nominated film and television composer—showcased songs that have been praised for their "emphatic edge and aesthetic urgency."


Martha Wainwright
February 28, 2009
Martha Wainwright performed songs from her new album I Know You're Married But I've Got Feelings Too. A sharp-tongued performer who doesn't hold anything back in concert, Wainwright has emerged as the latest star from a legendary family of performers.


How to Get Here
The Getty Center is located at 1200 Getty Center Drive in Los Angeles, California, approximately 12 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles. See Hours, Directions, Parking for maps and driving directions.