You may think that John Schaefer, the host of the WNYC show New Sounds, only appears on air, but every once in a while he appears in the Winter Garden in lower Manhattan, where he hosts free concerts themed around a legendary artist, performed by well-known and under-the-radar musicians. In the palm-filled courtyard of Brookfield Place a decade ago, I saw a band I’d never heard of before, The National, perform on a magical night dedicated to Springsteen’s pared-down classic, “Nebraska.”
This week, the guest of honor getting the cover treatment is David Bowie. Starting Wednesday, Oct. 17, Schaefer returns to this unlikely music venue to host three free nights of tributes to David Bowie’s Berlin Trilogy of albums (1979’s Lodger, 1978’s Heroes, and 1977’s Low), composed by Brian Eno and Klaus Schulze. The performers bringing the spirit of Bowie back to life include musicians from Deerhoof, Dirty Projectors, Shearwater and more. Each evening is dedicated to a different album and begins at 7:30pm. Arrive early to guarantee a spot or a seat on the floor.