Music News

Don Zientara

Look at the liner notes of the best punk and post-punk albums to come from Washington, D.C., over the past two decades-plus, and you're likely to find Don Zientara's name on lots of them. During the late '70s, Zientara founded Inner Ear Studio in his basement, and since then, he's worked with many of the region's top indie groups, including Fugazi, whom he assisted on all but one disc. He also pens and performs his own songs, and throughout Clocks & Watches, his latest solo CD, he keeps things simple and intense, relying mainly on a single guitar, raw vocals and words that are by turns political, as on "Darfur," and personal: The title cut includes the lines "I'll ask you to dance and you'll tell me to fuck off/Like you do all the time." This Sunday at 3 p.m., Zientara will share such material and engage in a Q&A about the infamous harDCore scene. Expect proof that he's still in touch with the passion that infused his greatest basement tapes.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts