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In the clubs and under the radar

The funk. It’s so hard to define. But you know it when you hear it.

There are many great funk drummers in Buffalo right now, and there are many who are from here and have gone on to bigger things. (Alan Evans of Soulive, you are the first person that popped into my head.) Michaelangelo Carubba is one of these timekeepers who just plain “gets it” when it comes to the funk.

Carubba grew up in Amherst, but he met his true musical soulmates in Boston, where the mighty funk ensemble Turkuaz was formed in 2008. Turkuaz did what every young band with an eye on making a life out of this whole crazy racket absolutely has to do – they upped and moved, en masse. In this case, the destination was Brooklyn – a den of hipsters, yes, but also, as it turns out, a funk hotbed. The members of Turkuaz cut their teeth at the Brooklyn Bowl and gradually evolved into the band that fans now commonly refer to as the “Funk Army.” By this point, Turkuaz is a hard-travelling collective, making the festival circuit in the summer and hitting the clubs the rest of the year.

It seems only proper that we welcome Carubba back to town in style Friday, when he and Turkuaz arrive to turn Duke’s Bohemian Grove Bar (253 Allen St.) into a face-melting dance party. Turkuaz will take over the club beginning at 9 p.m. Friday. You should plan on being there. These guys are a powerful force in concert. Don’t take my word alone for it – nailed it when it described Turkuaz in concert as being “like tossing a lit match into a dumpster full of fireworks.” Nice!

Admission is $10 at the door.

Tribute to Abbey Road

Denny Laine is the only person other than John Lennon to ever share a true creative partnership with Paul McCartney. Which is strange, really, when you consider how famous Laine isn’t.

A founding member of McCartney’s Wings, Laine was present through the finest recordings the band made during the 1970s – classics such as “Wild Life,” “Red Rose Speedway,” “Band on the Run,” “At the Speed Of Sound,” “London Town,” “Back to the Egg,” and the epic tour document “Wings Over America.” Before that, Laine was an original member of the Moody Blues, writing and singing that band’s massive early hit “Go Now,” a trick he reprised during most Wings concerts for the life of the band.

The London of the “swinging ’60s” being essentially a huge small town, Laine and McCartney inevitably bumped into each other, most often while recording at the fabled Abbey Road Studios where Laine and McCartney would perform together often over the ensuing decades.

It’s fitting, then, that Laine is touring a solo show dedicated to celebrating the immense amount of game-changing music that was recorded at the London studio.

The centerpiece of this show finds Laine performing the Beatles’ “Abbey Road” in its entirety, but when the Sportsmen’s Tavern (326 Amherst St.) welcomes Laine at 9 p.m. Friday, he also will be planning on sharing other classics recorded at Abbey Road over the years, including many he initially performed with McCartney.

Tickets are $30 at the club or at