Thursday, February 24, 2011

John Mellencamp, GWAR, Leon Russell, Marathon Bluegrass Jam, Puddleduck

The newly single and dating Meg Ryan (will she be in town?) John Mellencamp will be here on Thursday night at the Landmark Theater.  Good tix are still available which is not surprising when tix run from $44.50 for the balcony to $128 for orchestra.  You do get a free download of JM's new album, the T-Bone Burnett produced (that guy is everywhere) "No Better Than This", which is getting very good reviews, the best for a Mellencamp album in this decade (though all his albums have been good).  The show starts at 7 PM and opens with a short film, "It's About You" which profiles the making of the new album.  Then Mr. Mellencamp will perform a mix of old and new songs in a more than two hour show.  Here's JM playing "Easter Eve" from his latest album at Radio City Music Hall on 2/19/11:

On a completely different note, GWAR brings their horror rock to The National on Friday night.  Tix are $18.50 in advance and $21 at the door.  Doors open at 7 and show starts at 8 with openers Cannabis Corpse and Mensrea.  If you don't know much about GWAR this video should help you out.  Heavy metal, awesome costumes and gor-gor rises and attacks:

After the mayhem of GWAR, you can chill out the next day, Saturday, with the Marathon Bluegrass Jam at Grandpa Eddie's Alabama Ribs & BBQ.  The jam runs from noon until midnight and is a 12 hour non-stop bluegrass jam to benefit the Fisher House - an organization that lodges families of American soldiers recuperating at McGuire Veterans Hospital.  The bands particpating are East of Afton, Churchyard Grass, Leather Britches, Highway 249, Copper Ridge, Shockoe Bottom Boys, The Cary Street Ramblers and Shelton's Mill.  Musicians of all levels are invited to come and jam with the bands.  There is no cover charge for participating jamming musicians or the spectators but you better damn well give a donation.

Saturday night at Alley Katz, (Alley Katz, please stop that bang and music that comes on when you first go to your site.  It always makes my jump, I have to hurriedly turn down my volume, you've had it for 10 years now, and its just really f'in annoying) Puddleduck and opener Hazeltones will perform for your pleasure from 9 PM until 2 AM.  Tix are 8 in advance, $10 at the door.  Puddleduck play "funkin' southern rock", mostly original, though they've been known to cover Phish, Floyd, and Allman Brothers.  Here they are performing "Carolina" a couple years ago at Alley Katz:

Sunday afternoon, you can enjoy great beer and fine music at Legend Brewery's 17th Anniversary Party.  The party Starts at 3 PM and goes till 9 PM. Admission is $20 at the door and will include 3 live bands and 3 tickets for food and refreshments. Music by: Cyrus McCormick and the Reapers (50s & 60s rock n' roll), The Remnants (classic rock & R&B), Wade Reynolds and The Greater Richmond Pipes & Drums.  Guests under 21, $12 & Children under 12 are $5.

Tuesday night, Leon Russell, superstar of the 70's who is enjoying a comeback right now thanks to his new album with old friend Elton John, will be at The Hat Factory.  Tix are $20 in advance for standing, $30 in advance for seating.  Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with opener TBA.  Leon will be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in June along with John Bettis ("Human Nature", "Crazy For You", "Slow Hand"), Garth Brooks, Billy Steinberg & Tom Kelly ("Like a Virgin", "True Colors", "I Touch Myself"), and New Orleans great Allen Touissant ("Working in the Coalmine", "Ride Your Pony", "Sneaking Sally Through The Alley").  Leon wrote such songs as "This Masquerade", "Delta Lady", and "Tight Rope".  Here's Leon performing his current hit with Elton, "If It Wasn't For Bad":

And as a bonus my favorite Leon performance, "Jumpin' Jack Flash/Young Blood" from the Concert for Bangladesh.

In our continuing review of the 25 Best Music Videos of 2010 as chosen by Paste Magazine, this week we check out Nick Cave's band Grinderman and their video "Heathen Child".  This is one seriously f'd up video with Nick and the band as Gods of War who have the ability to fart nuclear explosions, werewolves, voodoo and a little dog who conducts the band.  I have no idea if the video is supposed to "mean" something other than being a nightmarish, yet sometimes humorous, collection of images.  Its pretty cool.

I'm outta here. Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan