This week, I’m sending you to Boothbay Harbor for some jazz, to Bayside Bowl for some classic country and honky-tonk, and to a parking lot in Portland for a fundraising music fest featuring a lively cross-section of local acts. With my toenails freshly painted a sea-foam green, I send you happy late-August sentiments and lots of local music.

The Novel Jazz Septet, led by trombonist Barney Balch, is seven hepcats from all over Maine who have been performing together for years. They are huge fans of Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn, two jazz composers who, between them, wrote more than 3,000 pieces.

For the past few years, Novel Jazz Septet has been on a mission to transcribe some of the pair’s lesser-known tunes and shine a modern light on them. Balch is so committed to this project that he periodically visits the National Archives in Washington, D.C., to work with Ellington’s original manuscripts.

Fourteen of Novel Jazz’s reinterpretations are now available on the CD “The Novel Jazz Septet Live: Ellington and Strayhorn Rediscovered.” I’ve been listening to it all week, and think that “Lotus Blossom” and “Mood Indigo,” among several others, are sensational. It was Ellington himself who said, “The wise musicians are those who play what they can master.” The Novel Jazz Septet can rest easy with this knowledge.

Novel Jazz Septet CD-Release Show. 7:30 p.m. today. Opera House at Boothbay Harbor, 86 Townsend Ave. $15 in advance; $20 at the door. 633-5159

I don’t know if it was once paradise, but here’s one parking lot you’re gonna wanna head to, be it in your car, on foot or via a big yellow taxi. Gather one and all on Free Street for the Portland Music & Arts Festival, a benefit for the Maine Children’s Cancer Program. It’s an all-day festival starring Maine artists and musicians.

Musical acts include Skyler, Pete Miller, Amanda Gervasi, Eric Bettencourt and Sara Hallie Richardson. And that’s just for starters. You’ll also hear the Maine Academy of Modern Music student band Beware of Pedestrians in all their pop-punk glory. Headlining the festivities is Lyle Divinsky. He’s a former Portlander now based in Brooklyn, and he’s coming home with his folk-funk sound. I listened to Divinsky via his Facebook fan page, and he pretty much had me at hello with the song “I Care.” You can take your pick from among the six others he’s posted.

Recap: Great cause, great music, five bucks. Go.

Portland Music and Arts Festival. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday. Free Street Parking Lot, Portland. $5; no cover before 4 p.m.

Classic country honky-tonk and twang are the dealio at Bayside Bowl as another night of “Too Broke to Be This Drunk” takes over. The Too Broke Band, led by Matt Robbins, will be fanning the flames as guest singer Holly Nunan steps up to the mic. Nunan, from the WBLM Band and The Desires, will be belting out gems from Loretta Lynn and Patsy Cline, with a Rolling Stones or Roger Miller tune thrown in for good measure.

Too Broke to Be This Drunk. 8 p.m. Saturday. Bayside Bowl, 58 Alder St., Portland. $5.

Staff Writer Aimsel Ponti can be contacted at 791-6455 or at:

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