Music Under Glass: Local Musicians You Should Know

Warm up with local music acts inside the Como Park conservatory

The Como Park Zoo and Conservatory's Music Under Glass concert series turns late-winter Sundays into opportunities to connect with local musicians in a warm, beautiful setting. The conservatory kicked off earlier this month with blues singer Annie Mack and hip-hop artists Chance York & Big Cats. Here's who else to catch through March 3, Sundays from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

January 20: Pushing Chain

This northern Minnesota duo plays "folky-tonk"—full of upbeat, rootsy, Americana influences by Boyd Blomberg on guitar and Adam Moe on fiddle. With a new album, Sorrows Always Swim, out last year, the 2012-formed pair have been trucking their classic country-tinged sound along the Lake Superior shore for years. 

February 3: King Wilkie's Dream

Four Minnesota musicians of storied pasts—from stints on A Prairie Home Companion to detours in tap dance and African drumming—came together to form the blues-bluegrass-swing band King Wilkie's Dream. A local supergroup of sorts, they represent the seasoned, musical Midwest.

February 10: Matt Arthur & the Bratlanders

Matt Arthur grew up near Hope, in southern Minnesota, listening to gospel music by Tennessee Ernie Ford and country by Johnny Cash. He started playing around the Twin Cities in the '90s, developing a sound that mixes early-'70s Rolling Stones, Nick Cave, Neil Young, and Leonard Cohen. Last year, Arthur released a gospel album, On the Edge, at the Bottom.

February 17: Lydia Liza

Many learned of Lydia Liza when her clever cover of "Baby, It's Cold Outside" went viral a few years ago, just as she was proving herself a darling of the Twin Cities scene with rootsy songwriting and an old-soul voice. Her original band, Bomba de Luz, has given way to Your Friend, Lydia Liza.

February 24: Lucy Michelle

Lucy Michelle puts soft, lilting vocals and classic sensibilities over the bounce of pop, drawing from a soup of American musical influences. We met her as the lead of Lucy Michelle and the Velvet Lapelles back in 2008. Since then, Michelle has experimented with different sounds and different collaborators. 

March 3: Mardi Gras with the New Riverside Ramblers

Mardi Gras falls on March 5 this year, and the New Riverside Ramblers' fiery take on Cajun dance music makes this a certified way to celebrate up north. They have twice won the Prix Dehors de Nous award from the Cajun French Music Association, building off more than two decades together playing some of the best Louisiana-inflected music you'll find in Minnesota.