Tank and the Bangas, Karl Denson at TRAF

The final weekend of the Three Rivers Arts Festival brought acts with Pittsburgh stories. Tank and the Bangas, whose rise to big stardom included top honors in the 2017 NPR Tiny Desk Awards, came to Pittsburgh early on because a small organization called Music Night on Jupiter: https://archive.triblive.com/aande/music/hampton-music-lovers-pay-it-forward-with-traveling-musicians/

They came back for the third or fourth time to a full house at TRAF. It was zany, it was political, it was mood swings, it was spoken word, it was headbanging.

 

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Karl Denson's Tiny Universe was originally slated for a weekday performance, but scheduling issues brought him to primetime at the festival weekend finale. The crowd was smaller than hoped, maybe because of the weather concerns, but that same crowd braved the late rainstorm until the end. Karl told the story of a Mr. Small's concert several years ago, and how the song "Millvale, PA" came to being on his latest album, "Gnomes & Badgers."