Dec. 19

Small favors

by: COURTESY OF BERT REINDERS/BOYD SMALL - Hes big in Europe - The Netherlands - and Boyd Small comes to Portland and plays with friends at Duffs Garage, Dec. 19.Probably best known in these parts as the singer-drummer for The Terraplanes, Boyd Small has gone on to become a fixture of the blues scene in The Netherlands, where he co-founded the record label Cool Buzz.

Gifted with a beautiful blue-eyed soul voice that has just enough grit in it to make him sound like a strong man who ain’t afraid to cry, Small is a classy frontman and will join Josh Fulero of the Curtis Salgado Band, Allen Hunter, and his Terraplane bandmate Chris Miller (who also has played with Dave Alvin) for this show.

Boyd Small & Friends, 9 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 19, Duff’s Garage, 1635 S.E. Seventh Ave. $10. Info: 503-234-BEER,

Dec. 20

Yule like this

Portland Cello Project urges you to wear your Christmas sweaters to their upcoming holiday show, which doubles as a release party for the group’s new “Winter” EP. The record features seasonal tunes from various cultures and historical periods, including such numbers as “Carol of the Bells,” the famous Spanish carol “Riu Chu,” and “Shalom Chaverim,” a Hanukkah song. The performance will feature such guests as: Nancy Ives, principal cellist for the Oregon Symphony; noted songwriter Howe Gelb; and Laura Gibson, Laura Veirs and Ashia Grzesik.

Portland Cello Project’s Holiday Sweater Spectacular, 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 20, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 S.W. Broadway. Ticket prices vary. Info: 800-273-1530,

Under electric candlelight

Ray Davies’ “Father Christmas” may qualify as one of the most cynical, poignant and downright accurate holiday songs ever written. Detailing the mugging of a department store Santa, the song nails with Davies’ characteristic wit the hollowness of forgetting the poor on a day devoted to a divine being born in their guise.

So what does that have to do with the Jeremy Wilson Foundation, a nonprofit health and service organization for musicians? Well, several local fans of Davies’ work are coming together for a Kinks Tribute Christmas Party to benefit the organization, and those fans include the members of the tribute band KINKED, as well as Dennis Mitchell, Honus Huffhines, Metropolitan Farms and Raf Mod Band. If you’re a fan of that most British of the British Invasion bands, this one’s for you.

The JWF Kinks Tribute X-Mas Party, 9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 20, Secret Society Ballroom, 116 N.E. Russell St. Suggested donation $5 to $20. Info: 503-493-3600,

Dec. 26

Boomerang blues

The Reverb Brothers are a reminder of why American music became so popular all over the world in the first place. As they jam on danceable music from yesteryear to 2013, raggin’, reelin’, rockin’ ‘n’ rollin’ till the break of day, you can’t help but wonder at the immense spirit of our country’s many styles, from blues to country to jazz and R&B — despite all our divisions and trouble, American music has a way of instantly uniting people around one word: fun!

This Portland band features: Claes Almroth on vocals, keyboards and harmonica; Doug Marx on vocals and acoustic guitar; Dave “Gutbucket” Duffield on cornet and vocals; Allan Lemley on electric guitar and vocals; J. Michael Kearsey on bass and vocals; and Fred Ingram on drums and vocals.

Playing both original music and a wide range of covers, they’re gigging on Boxing Day to raise money for Rose Haven, a community and intervention center for women and children experiencing the trauma of abuse and homelessness. Cash and canned food donations will be accepted, as well as blankets, sheets, towels, gloves, hats, scarves, personal hygiene products, diapers and baby wipes.

The Reverb Brothers, 9:30 p.m, Thursday, Dec. 26, LaurelThirst Public House, 2958 N.E. Glisan St. Info: 503-232-1504,

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