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Music Around Town

Mike Doughty

When: Wed., Feb. 22 2012

Mike Doughty has a couple of different things going on in Cleveland this week. First up at the B Side Liquor Lounge, the former Soul Coughing frontman will read from his just-released memoir The Book of Drugs, which looks back on 20 years of making music and the toll it and the industry took on his life. After that, he'll hit the Beachland Tavern to play songs from his two-decade career, including cuts from his latest studio album, 2011's Yes and Also Yes. Both events should be illuminating. When New York City art-rockers Soul Coughing released their debut album Ruby Vroom in 1994, the year grunge broke, they sounded like nothing else on the scene. Doughty came off like a beat poet reciting verse over the funk/jazz/indie noodlings the band provided. He was also a cranky asshole. That attitude makes The Book of Drugs a dizzyingly gratifying read, as Doughty looks back on the music and, yes, drugs that helped the band survive a major-label record deal in the halcyon '90s. You'll probably hear more tales between the songs at the concert, since Doughty loves words and is quite a storyteller. His new live album, The Question Jar Show, is filled with more recollections. 6 p.m. at the B Side Liquor Lounge. Free. 8 p.m. at the Beachland Tavern. Tickets: $20. – Michael Gallucci