Just off Harvard Square, the Oberon has carved a niche as the A.R.T.’s punky kid sister of a theater, with a reputation for daring cabaret-type shows. That tradition continues this fall when the Oberon presents “Black Light,” a one-woman show by Jomama Jones — the international soul diva whose hit-making R&B career suffered when she became a political exile from the U.S. during the ‘80s. If you’ve never heard of Jones, that’s because she’s actually the alter-ego of writer/performer Daniel Alexander Jones, whose one-character show interweaves original songs (inspired by the likes of Prince and Tina Turner) with monologues that explore cultural, spiritual and gender issues.
Daniel Alexander Jones as Jomama performs a song in “Black Light.” Video by Daniel Alexander Jones.
If you’ve ever seen a Kevin Smith movie (his biggest hits were 1994’s “Clerks” and 1997’s “Chasing Amy”), you know that the usual highlight is the appearance of profound stoners Jay and Silent Bob, who usually put the whole thing in perspective with a few well-chosen wisecracks. The pair recently got their second film of their own — Smith’s “Jay & Silent Bob Reboot,” due for imminent release — and the “road show” comes to the Wilbur Theater on Nov. 8, with Jason Mewes and Smith reprising their roles as Jay and Bob. A week later on Nov. 15, the Wilbur has another monologist of note, Al Franken. He should have plenty to say about his time in the U.S. Senate and as one of the best things that ever happened to “Saturday Night Live.”
On the rock ‘n’roll front, two of America’s most-adored bands are coming to Boston in October. As far as many critics are concerned Sleater-Kinney have inherited the Clash’s mantle of “the only band that matters,” being fiercely topical and punk-rock exhilarating at once. Their new album, “The Center Can’t Hold,” has polarized some fans (there are, gasp, synthesizers all over it), but it’s still full of the hard-hitting lyrics you’d expect feminists from Olympia, Wash., to write in the Trump era. The band (which includes Carrie Brownstein of the satirical TV comedy “Portlandia”) should be worth a trip to the House of Blues — granted, one of Boston’s least comfortable venues — on Oct. 29.
Wilco, the band led by Chicago native Jeff Tweedy, was formed in 1994 as part of the back-to-roots Americana movement, but it has since branched off and now performs any kind of song Tweedy cares to write, whether it’s deeply personal or fascinatingly abstract (and the group’s guitarist, Nels Cline, is guaranteed to make your jaw drop). Over the summer Wilco hosted its Solid Sound festival in North Adams, and now it’s back to play at the Boch Center Wang Theatre on Oct. 10 and 11. Before leaving the rock world, we’ll point out that relative youngster Jenny Lewis is a brilliant songwriter who can break your heart with a love song or hook you in with a character sketch — just ask Beck and Elvis Costello who’ve worked with her. She too is at the House of Blues on Oct. 25.