English Beat’s Dave Wakeling
English Beat's Dave Wakeling

Two acts from two different parts of the world, representing two different styles of music, highlight this week's Lowell Summer Music Series announcements.

Angelique Kidjo, a three-time Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter and one of the most enduring acts in world music today, will perform at Boarding House Park on Sunday, July 14, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $42 each ($142 for premium seats in front of the stage) and are on sale now at www.lowellsummermusic.org.

The English Beat, whose music blends Latin, ska, pop, soul, reggae and punk rock, will perform on the same Boarding House Park stage on Saturday, Aug. 10, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are also $42 each ($142 for premium seating) and go on sale Friday, March 1, at 10 a.m.

Kidjo has been called "Africa's premier diva" by Time magazine, while the BBC included her on its list of the African continent's 50 most iconic figures. Likewise, The Guardian listed her as one of its Top 100 Most Inspiring Women of the World, and she is the first woman to be listed among "The 40 Most Powerful Celebrities in Africa" by Forbes magazine.

She has earned honorary doctorates from Yale, Berklee College of Music and Middlebury College, and is the 2018 Harvard University Jazz Master in Residence.

She has recorded such diverse music as George Gershwin's "Summertime," Jimi Hendrix's "Voodoo Child" and The Rolling Stones' "Gimme Shelter.


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Angelique Kidjo
Angelique Kidjo
" Her latest offering is her interpretation of the Talking Heads' 1980 album "Remain in Light," which was inspired by music from West Africa, particularly Fela Kuti. It's the latest step in a musical journey that has seen her collaborate with the Dave Matthews Band, Alicia Keys, Branford Marsalis, Ziggy Marley, Peter Gabriel, Bono, Carlos Santana, John Legend, Herbie Hancock, Josh Groban, Dr. John and more.

The English Beat, known globally as The Beat, features Dave Wakeling on vocals and guitar. The group released three albums in the early 1980s, "I Just Can't Stop It," "Wha'ppen?" and "Special Beat Service," all of which charted in the United Kingdom and here in the U.S.

The original group featured Wakeling and Ranking Roger, but that group essentially split into two groups: The English Beat Starring Dave Wakeling (that's the group that's coming to Lowell) and The Beat Featuring Ranking Roger. The Wakeling version released a new studio album last year, "Here We Go Love!"

The English Beat's biggest '80s singles included "Mirror in the Bathroom" and "Save It For Later." The group also usually performs General Public's "Tenderness" since The English Beat morphed into General Public in the 1980s, a group that also included members of Dexy's Midnight Runners, The Specials and The Clash.

There are now five official shows in the 2019 Lowell Summer Music Series lineup:

n The Record Company, Saturday, July 13.

n Angelique Kidjo, Sunday, July 14.

n I'm With Her, Friday, July 19.

n The English Beat, Saturday, Aug. 10.

n The Beach Boys, Thursday, Aug. 15.

Lowell Summer Music Series officials told The Weekender last week that they have another half-dozen shows either confirmed or expected to be confirmed, that will be announced in the next few weeks.

The acts represent the reliable mix of veteran and younger performers and a variety of musical styles that have come to make the Lowell Summer Music Series the area's pre-eminent music offering each year.