We start with the mellow sounds of John Mayer and Phillip Phillips at the Richmond Coliseum. Show time is 7 PM. Tickets run from $39 to $80. There are still some good seats available. John has been through many phases in his career and right now he is in 70's country rock mode ala The Eagles or Jackson Browne. Here's a little preview of the show courtesy of John's Road Sessions YouTube series:
Friday night at Balliceaux, No BS! Brass Band will be there with some new music in hand or in horn, as the case may be. Show starts at 10 and it's $5 to get in. No BS! Brass Band continues to make a name for themselves as they'll be playing at the NYC Winter Jazz Fest in January. Here's No BS! Live at Forbes (Magazine?) with "Run Around":
The annual Hamaganza charity variety show stretched out to two nights a few years ago and the first stop is at Poe's Pub Friday night and then Lulu's on Saturday night. Admission is $10 or a nice juicy ham and all proceeds and hams go to the Central VA Food Bank. Hamaganza is always a crazy, surreal, funny, odd good time. You'll see local celebrities, fire juggling, musical whistling, dancing girls, ukeleles, drag queens including the large and legendary Dirtwoman, bad but fun music, arm wrestling, a Neil Diamond tribute band and so much more.
If you are looking for some fun with the kids on Saturday afternoon and the rain holds off, head down to Christmas on MacArthur in the 4000 block of MacArthur Ave. It will start at 11 AM and end at 4 PM. There will be a parade, lots of stuff for the kids and music from Susan Greenbaum, The Janet Martin Band and The Taters. And it's FREE. And bring an unwrapped toy for Toys of Tots and get a raffle ticket for a chance to win 1 of 6 free bikes.
Saturday night, Ghost of Pop 9 at Gallery 5 shows off some of the best Richmond music with My Old Ways, The Awesome Few, Long Arms, The Northeners, Hypercolor, Goldrush, and Black Girls. It's just $5 to get in and the money goes to HomeAgain, a local emergency shelter system. Things get underway at 6 PM. Here's My Old Ways playing earlier this year when it was much warmer:
Over at The National Saturday, indie rock band twenty one pilots performs along with The 1975 and MS MR. Doors open at 6, show starts at 7, tix are $22.50 in advance, $25 at the door. You might like twenty one pilots if you like Fun., Regina Spektor, Paramore, The Strokes, Of Montreal, or MGMT. Here's twenty one pilots doing "House of Gold" live:
At Strange Matter, it's punk-pop on Saturday with Swearin', Little Master, Snowy Owls, and Hoax Hunters play starting at 10 PM with doors opening at 9. Tix are $6 in advance, $8 day of show. Here's Swearin' at the late, great Maxwell's in Hoboken NJ earlier this year doing "Here to Hear":
Homeboy done good, Matthew E White returns to town for a much anticipated show on Sunday at Strange Matter. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with special guest Howard Ivans & DJ Mixie & Sister Goldenhaze. Tix are $12 in advance, $14 day of show. This was the message Matthew posted on Facebook a few hours ago, "Richmond friends. I have spent the last year and a half touring around the world on a record, Big Inner, that was made in our village. It was created with a spirit injected into me by this city and was raised up by the gifted musicians who practice their craft here. After 122 shows this year with my closest friends, musical conspirators and 100 proof Virginia gentlemen, we will be ending this whole story with a show Sunday night at Strange Matter. We would love to see you. This town means the world to us and Sunday will be very special, a way to say thank you for the immense support we all have felt and an appropriate ending place after a year that has changed all of our lives. Hope to see you there!" Here's Matthew doing "Big Love" in Paris last month:
Sunday at The Camel, dark, brooding stoner metal band Royal Thunder will get heavy on your ass, if you let them. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8, tix are $10. Here's their set from Newport, KY earlier this year:
DJ Williams Projekt checks in at City Dogs on Sunday. This is billed as the "RVA Funk Review with special guests" so you know your booty will be shaking. It's FREE to get in and it starts at 10 PM. Here's DJ Williams (on guitar) playing in his other band, Karl Denson's Tiny Universe:
Monday at Strange Matter, the band with the worst name in the universe, Diarrhea Planet, will play. Just think of an entire planet made of diarrhea. Ewwww. It's $8 to get in. Doors open at 9, show starts at 10 with openers The Midnight Ghost Train, No Regrets Coyote (cool Joni Mitchell reference for a band name), and Hot Dolphin, named after the infamous dolphin porn magazine (just kidding). Don't let Diarrhea Planet's name fool you. There loud, punk-pop sound, garage rock sound is pretty good and they'll rock your face off as noted by their nomination by NPR for one of the the best albums of 2013. Here's "Ugliest Son" from their latest album, "I"m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams":
The show of the week is Queens of the Stone Age at The National on Monday night. Not just because I'll be there but because this band is at the top of their game right now. They sold out this show at $50 a ticket on a Monday night. Their latest and truly awesome album, "...Like Clockwork" is showing up on all sorts of year end top 10 lists. They make great, weird, creepy videos. They get Trent Reznor, Dave Grohl and Elton John to play on their latest album. Doors will open at 6:30, show starts at 7:30 with opener RIBS. If you're going, let me know and we'll hang out while we rock out. If you can't get to the show, the next best thing is to watch it on YouTube as broadcast by NPR from The Wiltern Theater in LA in May:
And here is their creepy video for "Vampyre of Time & Memory". This song is one of many on their latest albums that gives me goosebumps in a good way:
Have a great weekend!