While seemingly the whole highbrow world descends on Miami Beach for the official opening of Art Basel, across the causeway The Vagabond kicks off the artsy extravaganza with a locals-centric fiesta. Okay, so Miami New Times is an official sponsor of the event, but it's never a bad time to shout out some hometown live music favorites. On the club's leafy, bohemian patio, the evening will kick off on the chilled-out side. The left-field folk duo Raffa and Rainer will rock — softly — followed by the twee, ukulele-laced shake-a-billy of the adorable Rachel Goodrich. Rounding things out will be the unpredictable troubadour Jesse Jackson. Will he play as a one-man band? Or with a full backing ensemble, complete with obscure wind instruments? That'll probably depend on his mood that afternoon.
Things should further heat up inside. Performing first will be the fast-rising ArtOfficial, a live hip-hop act that keeps its grooves so tight and on point it scored in the finals of a Lollapalooza-sponsored contest this past summer to take the festival's stage. The stars of the evening hardly need an introduction: Anyone with a pulse has caught the Spam Allstars at least five times, and anyone with a pulse will respond. And because this week is (supposedly) about visual art, there will be some of that too — painting by pop muralist LEBO, and the finest in lowbrow by Francesco LoCastro. Miami, pat yourself on the back.