Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Weekend Picks: New Year's Eve, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, Jackass Flats, Rattlemouth, Southern Belles, White Laces, Former Champions

New Year's Eve is here and if you want to head out, here's where you can go. There's a big celebration on Brown's Island called RVA NYE. It's FREE if you don't mind the cold, but if you want to get into a heated tent you'll need to be a VIP for $75 or $100 or get a Cabana for you and 19 of your friends for $1500. Don't bring the kids though, this is an 18 and older event. There will be beer trucks and food trucks for all. There will be a 50 foot ball drop at midnight and probably some fireworks too. Music is provided on two stages by Doddie, Mass FX, Hoody, Soulpower, Trill Bill, Fillmore Duo, Mr. Jennings, Reinhold, Micheal Nighttime and Dope Solo. Everything starts at 7 PM. Here's a promo clip.




Jamtronica band Lotus has sold out their show at The National on NYE. But if some pop up, they are $49.50. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers Groove Status and Zoogma. Here's their full set at Camp Bisco in 2013:




But don't fret if you can't get into The National on NYE jam band fans. Over at The Broadberry, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong will ring in the new year with The Shack Band. Doors open at 7. Tix are $25 in advance, $30 at the door. The band calling this Alice in One Hit Wonderland so expect some covers of one hit wonders, and there's a lot to choose from. Here' PPPP in Hamden CT on Dec. 13:




Bluegrass band Jackass Flats is at The Camel NYE. Tix are $25 at the door. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with Russell Lacy and then Matt Jones and the Bobs. As you may have gathered from the poster, Jackass Flats will be doing a set of Beatles tunes. Can't go wrong with that especially with Tim Beavers and Matt Volkes from People's Blues of Richmond and Andrew Trongone from Trongone Band sitting in on that Beatles set. Here's Jackass Flats at Camp Barefoot this year:



At the Dogtown Dance Theatre NYE, it's a triple bill with Rattlemouth, Fool's Errand and The Richmanian Ramblers. Doors open at 9 and the Ramblers start things at 9:30. Fool's Errand comes on at 10:30 and Rattlemouth at 11:30. It's $20 to get in and that includes a champagne toast and snacks. Rattlemouth play world groove music so this should be a fun and eminently danceable NYE show. Here's their set at the 2013 43rd St. Music Festival:




If you want to sweat out that NYE hangover, on New Year's Day, The Big Payback (James Brown Tribute) is playing at The Camel. Doors open at 8 and the show starts at 9 with The Flavor Project. It's $7 to get in and there will be free champagne if you didn't have enough the night before. Here's the James Brown Band in 1986 with Maceo Parker taking the lead on sax:



The Southern Belles are back for another First Friday at The Camel. It's $7 to get in. Captain Grandpa will open the show at 9. Here's the Belles first set at the last First Friday at The Camel:



Saturday, Hardywood reveals their new Raspberry Stout with a party that starts at 2 PM. At 5, Christi (four ladies surfing rock n' roll) will play. At 5:30, a band that's generating good buzz all over town, Lady God, hits the stage. 6:30 brings The Awesome Few. The show will close with White Laces coming on at 8:00. It's FREE to get in and food trucks will be there if you get hungry. Here's White Laces performing "Invocation":


Local jamtronica band Former Champions are at The Camel on Saturday. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 and it's $7 to get in. Here's their new video for "Timeless":



Get a hot dog and enjoy some fine blues from The Bush League at City Dogs in the Fan on Saturday night. It's FREE to get in. This is Bush League's last show in RVA before they had to the International Blues Challenge in Memphis to try and bring the gold (or whatever the first place award is) back to Richmond. Here's Bush League in Newport News a couple weeks ago:



That'll do it. Have a Happy New Year! Perhaps I'll see you at Dogtown Dance Theater on NYE.

Here's how New Year's Eve looked in 1975 with Chicago and Olivia Newton-John:


Tony Jordan

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Late Night Pick: Foo Fighters

Foo Fighters are on Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon tonight (11:35 PM, NBC), Perhaps there will be some Foo Christmas shenanigans? Amy Adams (who I have a huge crush on) and Nick Offerman (no crush, but very funny) are on the show too. Here's the Foo's "Pretender":



Here's Kendrick Lamar on The Colbert Report on Tuesday night. He is the Colbert Report's last musical guest as the Colbert Report ends tonight. Kendrick talks with Stephen for a little bit then performs a new track for the first time: VIDEO REMOVED BECAUSE IT WOULD AUTO START AND THERE WAS NO WAY TO STOP THAT!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Weekend Picks: Lemuria, Tony Bennett, Hamaganza, No BS! Brass Band, Skip Castro Band, The Congress, Lady God, Chatham County Line

This is a busy weekend as many bands try to get in a few last shows so they can have some extra Christmas cash to buy gifts for their friends and family and/or they're doing charity gigs to help people out in the holiday season. Either way, it's a good time to get out, blow off a little holiday stress, sleep late because you're off from work or nothing is going on at work anyway, and enjoy some fine music.


We start with Americana/bluegrass band Chatham County Line on their Electric Holiday Tour and stopping at the Broadberry on Thursday. Doors open at 8, tix are $15 in advance, $17 at the door. They just completed a tour of Norway, Holland, Scotland, Ireland and England and got back in time for Thanksgiving. Here's "Category Stomp" from last year's Electric Holiday Tour:



The national treasure that is Tony Bennett is at Altria Theater Thursday. Tony's daughter, Antonia, will open the show with a set of jazz/pop standards. It will all get underway at 8 PM. Tickets run from $55 to $115. Tony's duet album with Lady Gaga was named one of the best albums of 2014 by the Boston Globe. They wrote, "Maybe it shouldn’t come as a surprise that two outsize Italian-American entertainers from New York would have such an easy chemistry together. It was still a shock to hear how well Bennett and Gaga blended on this album of jazz standards, reminding you that she’s a dexterous singer and he’s the ultimate master of understatement." Though Lady Gaga won't be at the show Thursday, here they are together at this year's lighting of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree:



Over at The Camel, Trongone Band finish their December Thursday night residency. It's FREE to get in. The show starts at 8 with Mister F. Here's Trongone Band from the first week of the residency doing Little Feat's "Spanish Moon" with sax player Ron Holloway, who currently plays with Warren Haynes Band and has also played with Susan Tedeschi, Dizzy Gillespie, Gil Scott-Heron, and Root Boy Slim.




The annual Richmond tradition Hamaganza brings the weirdness to your holidays for 20 years now with two nights. The first is at Hardywood Brewery on Friday night starting at 6 PM. The second is at Cary St. Cafe on Saturday night starting at 10 PM. These shows benefit the Central VA Food Bank aka FeedMore. Admission is $10 or a ham. You never know what you will see at these shows but they are always MC'd by transvestite performer Dirtwoman who will lead the way through acts including Pete Lanzo, Blee Child, Chris Dovi, Kate Andrews, Rebecca Behrman, Jarrod Russell, J. Dean Owen, Mel Chase in the Hamaganza House band, with special appearances by Herschel Stratego, Iggy Plop and the Splooges, Diamond Heist -RVAs legendary Neil Diamond Tribute! The Perverted Puppet Players w/ the Cuttlefish, Female Arm Wrestlers, Jonathon the Juggler, The School of Rock, you may see some local news celebrities, whistlers, comedians and who knows what else. Just about anything goes.

New local band Lady God will be at Plant Zero Events and Arts Center as the musical guest for the new comedy showcase, RVA Central on Friday night. That will get underway at 7. No listing of cost but shouldn't be that much.

And that shouldn't go too late, because then Lady God heads over to Strange Matter to headline a show with SPORTS BAR and The Welcome Hips. The fun starts there at 9 PM on Friday when the doors open. It's just 5 dolla to get in. Here's Lady God rocking their power pop/surf sound last month at Sound of Music Studios:



Friday, No BS! Brass Band have their Annual Canned Food Drive show at The Broadberry. Doors open at 8 and the show starts with Gina Sobel and The Mighty Fine. You can get in for $8 if you bring a canned good or goods. You get in for $12 if you don't. Here's their latest video, "Git It Awn!" and they do:



If you head out to do a little last minute Christmas shopping Saturday morning (Saturday is the biggest shopping day of the year), why not wind down in the afternoon with a beer and some bluegrass-ish rock n' roll music with Flesh Mountain Boys and Adam Eubank at Cary St. Cafe. It's FREE to get in and starts at 2 PM. Here's a little promo for the show:



And here's the band at Cary St. Cafe last year:




Sunday night, it's blues rock/R&B/boogie-woogie galore at The Broadberry with The Skip Castro Band and The Nighthawks. It's $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Doors open at 7 and the show starts at 7:30. If you don't know Skip Castro Band, here's the press blurb:
It began a long time ago. 1978 to be exact. Four musicians, out of work at the same time got together because honestly, they liked to play music. Thus, the Skip Castro Band was born. A mutual love of rhythm 'n blues, swing, boogie woogie and rock 'n roll became the foundation.
Over the next ten years, Skip Castro would become staples on the East Coast between Boston and Atlanta playing every bar, club, music hall, and college in between. All the while having a great time. Called one of the best party bands ever, Skip Castro brings the party every time they take the stage.
And who didn't they play with? Muddy Waters, Big Joe Turner, Bo Diddley, James Brown, Chuck Berry, James Cotton, Albert Collins, Stevie Ray Vaughn, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, George Thorogood and the Destroyers, the Nighthawks, the Kinks, Kenny Loggins and a host of others....
Fast forward 36 years and the same four guys are still playing together. Why?
Because even though they stopped playing full time 25 years ago, there's a unique groove and spirit that exists when Skip plays. They've played with other musicians but the greatest satisfaction comes when these four get together.
 And here they are playing at the State Theater in Falls Church a couple weeks ago:




Indie rockers from Buffalo, Lemuria, will be at Strange Matter Monday. Tix are $10 in advance, $12 day of show. If you buy in advance, you get a free 7" single! The doors open at 8. Prince (the band, not the artist formerly known as and now known again as Prince), Cross Eyed & Victory Party will open. Lemuria sold out their shows in Boston and Chicago, and had a number of shows moved to larger venues on this tour so if you want to go, get your tix now. Here's Lemuria talking about "Wise People":



Americana/alt-country band The Congress at at The Camel Tuesday night for a Christmas show with special guests The Southern Belles. Doors open at 8, it's $12 to get in, $10 in advance. The Congress are originally from RVA but reside in Denver now, but they're home for the holidays and want to rock. They've recently been opening for bands like Lake Street Dive and Hard Working Americans. Here's their latest, "Ain't It Easy":



Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Late Night Pick: Kendrick Lamar

It's the last week of the Colbert Report, before he takes some time off to prepare to take over the Late Show from David Letterman later this summer. So watch the Colbert Report tonight with rap artist Kendrick Lamar (Comedy Central, 11:31 PM). Here's Kendrick's biggest hit (so far) "Swimming Pools (Drank)":



Here's Interpol on last night's Conan:

Monday, December 15, 2014

Late Night Pick: Interpol (2x)

Alternative, indie, new wave, post punk band Interpol is on not once but twice tonight. You can first catch them on Conan (TBS, 11 PM). Then, they'll be on Last Call with Carson Daly (NBC, 1:35 AM). Their song "NYC" was recently featured in a Village Voice article as one of the "60 Best Songs Written about New York City". Which is saying a lot because a lot of songs have been written about NYC. Let's play it, shall we. This is "NYC" by Interpol:



Here's Bahamas on Thursday night's Conan:

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Weekend Picks: Bleachers, Walk the Moon, Carbon Leaf, Bio Ritmo, DJ Williams Projekt, Skydog, Brown Sabbath, Everwilde

Country-rock band Everwilde did a fine job opening for Delta Saints at The National last week and they'll be at one of their regular spots, Uptown Alley, Friday night. The band gets underway at 8:30 and goes until 11:30 and it's $5 to get in. They'll also be raffling off a holiday prize pack of a signed guitar, t-shirt and CD. Also, if you bring a new, unwrapped toy for the charity Mason's Toy Box, you'll get a $5 game card. Here's Everwilde doing "This Time":



Saturday, Hardywood  busts out their new Christmas Morning brew which is their Gingerbread Stout conditioned on locally roasted Brazilian and Sumatran coffee beans. The beer gets tapped at 2 PM, music starts at 4 PM with square dancing with the Cary Street Ramblers. At 6:30, Loversville brings the classic country. And at 8:00, Andy Vaughan and The Driveline end the night with their Country Honky Tonk Americana Rock. Here's Andy Vaughan and The Driveline with "Sam's Place":



Local boys done good, Carbon Leaf, do their now annual Holiday time homecoming show at The National. Tix are $16 in advance, $20 at the door. Doors open at 7:30 and the show starts at 8:30 with opener Chamomille & Whiskey. The band may still be looking for a few Forest Rangers. Here's the ad:
Looking for a few Tree Committee volunteers to help set up and tear down the Christmas pines at our annual holiday show at The National this Saturday, Dec. 13th in Richmond, VA. Helpers get a ticket to the show! Please indicate if you can work between 2-5pm for set up and/or 11pm-12am for tear down. Email Jay or Holly at info@carbonleaf.com
Here they are doing a song from the great Muppet Christmas special, Emmet Otter's Jugband Christmas:


Ever wonder what would have happened if Black Sabbath had opened for the Allman Brothers Band? If you did, then you should go see the Skydog (Allman Brothers tribute band)/Brown Sabbath (Black Sabbath tribute band) show at The Broadberry on Saturday night. It's $8 in advance, $10 at the door. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with Brown Sabbath. We'll join Skydog here in the middle of "Jessica":



Salsa sensation Bio Ritmo is at The Camel on Saturday night. Doors open at 8 and the show will start shortly thereafter. It's $7 to get in. The NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert Bio Ritmo did a couple months ago is already up to over 21,000 views. Congratulation, Bio Ritmo!



Tuesday night at Broadberry it's ladies night with DJ Williams Projekt. The doors open at 8, show starts at 9 and it's $7 to get in, but ladies get in for free before 11 PM. Here they are at the Little Gem Saloon in New Orleans in May with Scott Frock sitting in on trumpet:




Wednesday at The National it's night #1 of XL102's Miracle on Broad St with Bleachers, Walk the Moon and Prinze George. Doors open at 6:30, show starts at 7:30, tix are $25 in advance, $28 day of show. Here's Bleachers at the Made In America fest Labor Day weekend in Philly:



And here's Walk the Moon with their latest single "Shut Up and Dance":

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Late Night Pick: Bahamas

While it would be nice if tonight's late night pick was me taking a red-eye to the Bahamas islands, alas, it is actullay Canadian indie/pop/rock/alternative/singer-songwriter/folk band Bahamas, which is the recording name of Afie Jurvanen. They'll be on Conan tonight at 11 PM on TBS. Bahamas are certainly big in Canada as they have been nominated for Artist of the Year and Album of the Year at the CBC Music Awards. From 2012, here's Bahamas' "Caught Me Thinking":



Here's J. Cole on last night's Late Show with David Letterman:

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Late Night Pick: J. Cole

Rapper J. Cole is getting fine reviews for his latest album, "2014 Forest Hill Drive" (address of his childhood home in Fayetteville, NC) and you can check him out on Late Show with David Letterman tonight (11:35 PM, CBS). By the way, Dave announced today that his last show will be May 20, 2015. I can't wait to see how he goes out. I hope he does something insane and doesn't let it bog down in sentimentality. That would be the Dave way. From 2011, here's J. Cole's "Work Out" (language NSFW):



Here's Tune-yards performing "Water Fountain" on last night's Conan:

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Late Night Pick: Tune-Yards

Conan (TBS, 11 PM) hosts quirky art pop band, Tune-Yards, tonight. Tune-Yards are still out supporting their well received album, Nikki Nack. From their 2009 album, Bird-Brains, here's "Real Live Flesh":



Here's Al Green on last night's Late Show with David Letterman doing two of his greatest hits:

Monday, December 8, 2014

Late Night Pick: Al Green

The legendary Al Green will be on Late Show with David Letterman tonight (CBS, 11:35 PM). Al became a Kennedy Center honoree yesterday along with Tom Hanks, Sting, Lily Tomlin and ballet dancer Patricia McBride. Here's Al singing a song as relevant today as the day it was written by Sam Cooke:




Thursday, December 4, 2014

Late Night Pick: Alt-J; 2014's Best Reviewed Debut Albums

Alternative/indie rockers, Alt-J, are on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35 AM, NBC). Alt-J will be playing South American Lollapalooza in Argentina, Chile and Brazil in March if you'll be down there. Here's "Breezeblocks" from their 2012 debut album, "An Awesome Wave":



Speaking of debut albums, were you wondering who had the best reviewed debut album of 2014? Of course you were and Metacritic provides the answer HERE.

Here's The Decemberists on last night Conan:

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Weekend Picks: Black Keys, St. Vincent, Delta Saints, Lone Bellow, Robert Ellis, The Wailers, Old Testament, No BS! Brass Band

This looks like a really good weekend for music and, as all good weekends do, it starts on Thursday night with The Delta Saints at The National. I first caught this Nashville blues-rock band at The National early this year when they opened for Blackberry Smoke. Totally unknown to me at the time and seemingly unknown to most of the audience, by the end they had captured the whole crowd with their energetic, swaggering rock show and, dare I say, they stole the show from the headliner. They've only got 3 shows left in 2014 after this one, so you know they'll be trying to end their year with a bang. Tix are just $12.50, doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with opener Everwilde. Look for me there. Here's Delta Saints with "Cigarette:




Trongone Band just finished up the last of their long running Thursday night residency shows at Cary St. Cafe two weeks ago. Wasting no time, they start a three week Thursday night residency at The Camel this week. Doors open at 8 and the show starts shortly thereafter with The Ron Holloway Band. It's FREE to get in.


No BS! Brass Band is at Balliceaux Thursday night. Show starts at 10 and it's $5 to get in. Here they are at a popup party here in RVA in September.


Friday night, Southern Belles take over The Camel. Doors open at 8 and the show opens with The Royal Noise. It's $7 to get in. They play mostly originals but they like to slip in a nice cover or two also. Here's one that was once the theme song to "The Dick Vermeil Show":







Saturday night it's the big show at Richmond Coliseum with The Black Keys and St. Vincent (not to be confused with the new Bill Murray movie). This is gonna be a killer show front to back with both bands' latest albums hitting many end-of-the-year best-of lists. In fact, Paste Magazine just named St. Vincent's self-titled album the #2 Best Album of the Year. Show starts at 8 and make sure you are in on time to see St. Vincent. Tix range from $44 to $79 (that includes the service charges) and are still available for the first and second level. I'll be down on the sold out GA floor so I can stand up like I like to. The Black Keys just recorded an Austin City Limit show that you can see on Jan. 31 on PBS. Let's do one video from each band.

Here's the Black Keys, "Next Girl":



And here's St. Vincent's "Marrow":



Modlin Center for the Arts also has a really great Americana double bill on Saturday night with The Lone Bellow and Robert Ellis. Tix range from $10 to $22 depending on your demographic. The show starts at 7:30. Be sure to get there early for Robert Ellis who put on a really good show at Friday Cheers a few years ago. Expect new music from The Lone Bellow as their new album, "Then Came the Morning", comes out on January 27. Let's do a video from each artist here too.

Here's the title track from The Lone Bellow's new album recorded live at WFUV in October:



Here's Robert Ellis asking "What's In It For Me?":




Blues band, The Bush League, will be at Poe's Pub on Saturday night. Show starts at 9, It's $5 to get in but if you bring a canned good you'll get $5 off of the Bush League merchandise. They'll also be raffling off some items as well.

Sunday night, cast off the cold weather and feel Jamaican, mon, when The Wailers play at John Marshall Hotel Ballroom. Tix are $20 for GA, $75 for VIP Balcony, doors open at 6, show starts at 6:30 with Richmond's own Trongone Band. Here's The Wailers at this year's Glastonbury Festival.



Tuesday night at Strange Matter, it's LA Americana/psychedelic rock band Old Testament leading a bill that includes The Shine Brothers, The Diamond Center, and Dorthia Cottrell. Doors open at 9, it's $8 in advance, $10 day of show. Here's Old Testament a couple years ago in LA.



Have a great weekend! See you at The Delta Saints and The Black Keys/St. Vincent!

Tony Jordan

Late Night Pick: The Decemberists

The Decemberists are back with a new album, well, almost. "What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World" is the title and a sentiment I can agree with. And the album will be out next month on January 20. And tonight, they will be on Conan, peforming "Make You Better" from that album. Here's one of my favorite Decemberists songs. If you think you know how this one is going go, wait until the 90 second mark or so when the guitar riff and female vocalist, Shara Worden, kick in. Stunning.



Here's two from Walk the Moon on last night's Jimmy Kimmel Live. First, "Shut Up and Dance" from their latest album. And then, "Anna Sun".




Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Late Night Pick: Walk the Moon

Pop rock band Walk the Moon will be on Jimmy Kimmel Live tonight (ABC, 11:35 PM). They'll be in town for the XL102 Miracle on Broad Street show with Bleachers at The National on Dec. 17. Here's their great song, "Anna Sun", from their self-titled debut album:



Mary J Blige was on the Tonight Show last night and she performed her new song, "Therapy":



And from last night's World Aids Day show in the middle of Times Square, Bruce Springsteen with U2. Thought Bruce sounded a little rough as he stretches out his voice as the beginning of "Where the Streets Have No Name" but by the end of the song, I had goosebumps.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Springsteen, U2, Kanye on free live webcast tonight; Late Night Pick: Mary J. Blige

THIS JUST IN: In honor of World Aids Day, (RED) and Bank of America are putting on a free concert tonight in Times Square. Bono is still ailing after his bike accident so U2 will have a couple friends singing for them: Bruce Springsteen & Chris Martin (Coldplay). Not bad. Also performing will be Kanye West and Carrie Underwood. The show will be webcast on YouTube starting at 7:30 ET HERE.

Tonight's late night pick is R&B diva, Mary J Blige on Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon (NBC, 11:35 PM). Mary has a new album, "The London Sessions", coming out tomorrow. Speaking of U2 and Mary J Blige, here they are together doing U2's "One":

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Weekend Picks: MST3K, Trey Anastasio, J Roddy Walston & The Business, Dopapod, Former Champions, Susan Greenbaum, The Floorboards

To see what's going on Wednesday, 11/26, Thanksgiving Eve, check out last week's blog HERE.

On Thanksgiving, every one is taking the day off including all the bands. If you want a break from football, check out the Mystery Science Theater 3000 Turkey Day Marathon starting at noon on YouTube HERE. Six classic MST3Ks will be shown back-to-back with new intros from Joel. If you don't know what I'm talking about, check out the trailer and playlist of clips below and then tune in.




Friday, it's time to work off that turkey and rock with J Roddy Walston and The Business, last seen in these parts with a killer show at Friday Cheers this summer. They'll be at The National. Tix are $12.50 in advance, $15 day of show. Doors open at 7 and the show starts at 8 with excellent Richmond band, Avers, so don't be late. You'll like J Roddy if you like My Morning Jacket, Drive-By Truckers, Kings of Leon, Warren Zevon, Led Zep or long, whipping hair. Here's "Heavy Bells":




Over at the Broadberry Friday, it's a Black Friday Throwdown with The Big Payback: A Tribute to James Brown.Tix are $8 in advance, $10 at the door. Doors open at 8, Kenneka Brook and Stonebrook Moonshine will open. Big Payback is promising some special guests and some new jams for the show so if you've seen 'em before, go see 'em again and if you haven't seen 'em, go see 'em. Here's James Brown on Shindig with Spanish subtitles. Sing along!



Get down jamtronica style at The Camel Friday with Former Champions. Doors open at 9, show starts at 9:30 with Homemade Bread and DJ Phil Dice will fill in all the empty spaces around the bands. It's $7 to get in. Here's a full Former Champions set from 2/1/14:



Once Thanksgiving is done, I guess it's OK to start listening to some Christmas music. I don't usually like to dig in to the Xmas tunes until a week or two before Christmas, but I could make an exception for the talented and lovely Susan Greenbaum and her Band's Holiday show at Ashland Coffee & Tea on Saturday night. They'll play some originals and some classics. Show will start at 8, no opener. Tix are $16 in advance, $20 at the door. Here's Susan's "You Are My Holiday":



Americana bands are featured at The Camel Saturday night. The Floorboards, The Atkinsons and Relacksachian will all take the stage, perhaps one at a time, perhaps together. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 and it's $7 to get in. Here's The Floorboards riding in the "Devil's Cadillac":




Sunday, Trey Anastasio, guitarist from Phish, brings the Trey Anastasio Band to The National. Tix are $39.50. Doors open at 6:30, show starts at 7:30 and there is no opener. This will be the third show of their fall tour so they should be rarin' to go. Here's Trey and the band at The Wellmont Theater in NJ doing one of my favorite songs from The Band, "It Makes No Difference" into one of my favorite songs from TAB/Phish, "Gotta Jibboo":




Tuesday at Broadberry, progressive dance rock band, Dopapod, pulls into town, with Tauk to open the show. You can check out Dopapod's new album, "Never Odd or Even" on Spotify, if you are so inclined. Or you can check them out here. This was their 2nd set opener at The Stache in Grand Rapids MI on 10/19/14. It's call "New James".



Have a great Thanksgiving weekend and thank you for reading Handful of Brains!


Tony Jordan

Late Night Pick: Lorde

Lorde will be on Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon tonight (11:35 PM, NBC). She curated the soundtrack for the new Hunger Games sequel, "Mockingjay: Part 1" (the soundtrack is getting good reviews) and she has four songs on it. Who else does Lorde like enough to include on her soundtrack? Bat for Lashes, Vampire Weekend's Rostam Batmanglij, Charli XCX, The Chemical Brothers, Chvrches, Ariana Grande, Haim, Grace Jones, Duran Duran's Simon LeBon, Major Lazer, Miguel, Pusha T, Q-Tip, Raury, Stromae, Tinashe, Tove Lo, and xoV. Rather than play "Royals" again, let's play Weird Al's parody, "Foil":



Here's Interpol on last night's Late Night with Seth Meyers doing "Everything Is Wrong":

Monday, November 24, 2014

Late Night Pick: Interpol

Indie rockers Interpol are on Late Night with Seth Meyers tonight (NBC, 12:35 AM) where they will perform a track from their latest album, "El Pintor". Interpol recently had to cancel three shows because they were stuck in the snow in Buffalo, a good chunk of the time on their tour bus on the closed highway. They shouldn't have such problems when they play the Southern Hemisphere Lollapalooza's this year in Chili, Argentina and Brazil. After all, it's summer down there. From their new album, here's "All The Rage Back Home":



Here's Jessye Norman on Late Show with David Letterman last week, performing the classic "Midnight Special":

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Weekend Picks: Flogging Molly, Dave Mason, Young Sinclairs, Warren Hixson, The Nth Power, Black Girls, The Machine, Early 80s Power Pop


Saturday, it's no special brew release at Hardywood, but just good bands and an early start time (and finish) as usual. Music starts at 5 PM with Grass Panther, then The Invasion, and then headliner, The Young Sinclairs. The Invasion are the new RVA boogie woogie combo focusing on 60s psych and garage from the British Isles, featuring members of RPG, The Diamond Center, The Young Sinclairs, and Peace Beast. Young Sinclairs play psychedelic "harmonious analog pop tunes with unbridled rock excitement out of Roanoke". Here's Young Sinclairs' "Ceto's Return":




Some classic psychedelia at The National Saturday with The Machine: Ultimate Pink Floyd Tribute. Tix are $15 in advance, $18 at the door, $20 for seated balcony tix. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 and I do not believe there is an opener so don't be late. They were the first band in the world (so they say) to perform a track from the new Pink Floyd album, "Endless River", when they did "Louder Than Words" on 11/7. Here it is:




If you want to dance Saturday night, then get thee to Balliceaux for the disco funk of Black Girls. Show starts at 10 and it's $5. Here they are at The Broadberry in April:



More soul/funk at The Broadberry on Sunday with The Nth Power. Tix are $12 in advance, $15 at the door. Doors open at 8 and get there early for DJ Williams Projekt, and I'm sure DJ will step in the Nth Power before the night is done. The Nth Power is made up of drummer Nikki Glaspie (Dumpstaphunk, Beyonce), bassist Nate Edgar (John Brown's Body), vocalist/keyboardist Nigel Hall (Lettuce, Warren Haynes Band), guitarist Nick Cassarino (Jennifer Hartswick Band, The Shift), and percussionist Weedie Braimah (Toubab Krewe, Creative Pandemonium), As you can see from the bands these guys have played with they certainly have a great pedigree. This song has a nice 70's jazz pop groove to it. It's "Thank You":



Monday night James Taylor is at Richmond Coliseum.  Show starts at 8 and no opener is listed. Tix are $67 - $87 which is a lot to pay for a nap. Sorry, never been a fan.

Much cheaper and much more interesting on Monday night is the show at Sound of Music Studios. Warren Hixson, Lady God and Beat Awfuls will be there and it's just $8. Things get underway at 8. Here's Warren Hixson bathed in fuzzy darkness doing their fuzzy pop rock at Gallery 5 a couple years ago:



Do you like yoga? Do you like the Grateful Dead? Then check out Grateful Groovinyasa at The Camel on Tuesday evening. The yoga class will be serenaded by Johnny & Andrew Trongone from The Trongone Band playing instrumental Grateful Dead tunes. And not only can you fell good in body and spirit, you can do good because it's a food drive. A portion of the proceeds will go to FeedMore. It's $15 to get in or $10 with 3+ food items for donation. It'll run from 6 PM - 7 PM. Until then, sit back and smoke 'em if you got 'em for the full 3+ hour 12/31/81 show from The Grateful Dead. And look! Jerry was just starting to get fat! And Joan Baez, Matthew Kelly and John Cippolina all sit in for few tunes.



Wednesday night, Thanksgiving Eve, is a pretty good night for music here in the RVA. The National has Celtic punk band from LA, Flogging Molly, ready to help you work on your Thanksgiving Day hangover. Tix are $25 in advance, $28 at the door. Doors open at 7:30, show starts at 8:30. The Mighty Stef and The Pasadena Band open. If you really like them, join their Salty Dog Cruise which sails around the Bahamas 3/13 - 16 (right before St. Patty's Day) and includes Gogol Bordello, Frank Turner and Mariachi El Bronx. Here's Flogging Molly playing Tivoli Amusement Park in Sweden this summer (some language NSFW):



The Broadberry has got Talking Heads tribute Fear Of Music along with Latino Ramones tribute Los Ramones.$8 in advance, $10 at door. Doors open at 8 PM, show starts around 9:30. Here's the promo video with lots of funny shots of presidents with turkeys:



And perhaps they'll play this one to fit the theme of the night:



Over at Capital Ale House downtown, it's Dave Mason's Traffic Jam. This is billed as a "sight and sound experience" where guitarist Dave Mason will play music and talk about his time in Traffic, his solo career and playing and hanging out with Eric Clapton, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Fleetwood Mac, The Rolling Stones, Graham Nash, Stephen Stills, Rita Coolidge, Leon Russell, Ron Wood and Mama Cass Elliot. GA tix are $60, doors open at 7 and the show starts at 8. No opener is listed. Here's Dave doing one of his hits on the Midnight Special in the 70's, "We Just Disagree":



You can bring in turkey day bluegrass style on Wednesday night at The Camel with Jackass Flats, The Green Boys and Sturgeon City. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 and it's $7 in advance, $10 at the door. Here's Sturgeon City at Ashland Coffee & Tea in September:



To close things out, I just got into an early 80's pop new wave kick so here are a few videos of my faves starting with a commercial for my favorite K-Tel album, "Rock 80":



This is one of the greatest songs ever. And used to nice effect in the New Year's Eve '79 scene in "Boogie Nights".



I believe this one was introduced to me on K-Tel's "The Rock Album":



For the longest time I thought the line in this song "they don't write 'em like than anymore" was "Feels alright like Saturday morn". Which actually isn't a bad line.



One of the big early MTV videos and a damn fine song. Awesome leopard skin jumpsuit too.



Now the guy does Geico commercials. But he found Appolonia before Prince did in this one. Great beat.



And perhaps the biggest geek on early MTV, Donnie Iris. But I've always loved the vocals on this. The chorus sounds so lush.



Have a happy Thanksgiving!

Tony Jordan

Late Night Pick: Jessye Norman

We're gonna get classy tonight with opera/classical/jazz vocalist Jessye Norman on Late Show with David Letterman (11:35 PM, CBS). From her Wikipedia bio:

Jessye Mae Norman (born September 15, 1945) is an American Grammy award-winning contemporary opera singer and recitalist.[1] Adramatic soprano, Norman is associated in particular with the Wagnerian repertoire, and with the roles of Sieglinde, Ariadne, Alceste, andLeonore.[2] Norman has been inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame and is a Spingarn Medalist.[3] Apart from receiving several honorary doctorates and other awards, she has also received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, the National Medal of Arts, and is a member of the Royal Academy of Music.
Here she is rocking a little "Ave Maria":




Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Late Night Pick: St. Lucia

Indie dream alternative new-wave post-punk synth pop rock band St. Lucia will be on Late Night with Seth Meyers tonight (NBC, 12:35 AM). Here's the band doing "September" in October 2012:



Here's Hiss Golden Messenger's network television debut on Late Show with David Letterman last night:

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Late Night Pick: Hiss Golden Messenger

Alternative singer/songwriter indie folk country Americana rock artist Hiss Golden Messenger (aka Scott Hirsch) will be on Late Show with David Letterman tonight (11:35 PM, CBS). HGM opened up for Jason Isbell here at The National in August. You might dig HGM if you like Fleet Foxes, Son Volt, The National, William Elliot Whitmore, Bon Iver, Nick Drake, Wilco, Bright Eyes, or Sufjan Stevens. Here's HGM's "Jesus Shot Me In The Head" (I hate when that happens):



Here's Real Estate doing "Crime" on last night's Conan:

Monday, November 17, 2014

Late Night Pick: Real Estate

Groovy psychedelic indie rockers Real Estate are on Conan (11 PM, TBS) tonight. You might dig them if you like Velvet Underground or the Grateful Dead. Here's their full set from the Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago this summer:



Here's Sylvan Esso doing "Coffee" on last Thursday's Conan:

And here's a web exclusive with Sylvan Esso doing "Hey Mami":

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Weekend Picks: Bobby Bare Jr, Atmosphere, John Butler Trio, Real Friends, Black Girls, Bio Ritmo, Diamond Center, Trongone Band


Midwest underground rap group Atmosphere is at The National Friday night. Doors are at 7 and that's when the show starts with openers Prof, Dem Atlas and DJ Fundo. Tix are $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Here's Atmosphere's "Arthur's Song" (not a Christopher Cross remake!)(language NSFW):




Great local band show at The Broadberry Friday night with Black Girls, Octopus Jones (they're actually from Raleigh), Sleepwalkers  and Big Fifty. Doors open at 8, music starts at 9 it's $8 in advance, $10 at the door. Here's Sleepwalkers "Prey and Pressure" in August:




More local music at The Camel on Friday with Bio Ritmo. Though based in Richmond, it's hard to call them local as they have played their salsa music all over the world. So we'll call them our local international band. Doors open at 9 and it's $7 to get in. These guys are getting big as evidenced by their appearance on NPR's Tiny Desk Concerts last month:



Australian jam band John Butler Trio are here Sunday at The National, Monica Heldal opens. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8, tix are $25 in advance, $28 at the door. These guys headline festivals in Australia so you know they can bring it live. If you want a preview of their show, you can catch Friday's show live on a webcast on Yahoo Live HERE. Here's their latest video "Spring to Come" with some really cool animation:



At Bandito's, The Diamond Center bring their heavy psychedelia to your Sunday night. Talked to Kyle from Diamond Center after their great show at Hardywood on Saturday night. He said some new Diamond Center is on the way for the new year so we'll be looking forward to that. It's FREE to get in. Music starts at 10 PM with Heavy Midgets. To add to the fun, there will be $1 PBRs. Here's Heavy Midgets and their "House of Cats" at Strange Matter last year:



Tuesday at The Camel, alt-country/rock artist Bobby Bare Jr. (yes, he's the son of that Bobby Bare and they recently did a show together in Nashville) performs with his band Young Criminals" Starvation League. Doors will open at 7. The Camel's new web site is still being built so the cost and openers aren't up yet, but check their web site and/or Facebook page as it gets closer to Tuesday. You'll probably did BBJR if you like Drive-By Truckers, Jim James, My Morning Jacket, Ryan Adams, Grateful Dead or Todd Snider (who he recently opened for). Here's a four song set BBJR recently did on KEXP:




Chicago pop punkers Real Friends are at The Broadberry Thursday (11/20). It's $15 to get in, doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers Neck Deep, Cruel Hand and Have Mercy. Here's Real Friends' "Late Night in My Car" (some language NSFW):



Trongone Band play their next to last show at Cary St. Cafe on Thursday (11/20). Show starts at 10 PM and there is no cover. Here they are at The Camel in July:



Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Late Night Pick: Sylvan Esso

Sylvan Esso is a duo made up indie folk artist Amelia Meath (of Mountain Man) and electronic producer Nick Sanborn. As one might expect, they've created a folk-electronic hybrid that's been compared Chvrches, Wye Oak, Regina Spektor, Feist and St. Vincent. They'll be on Conan tonight (TBS, 11 PM). Sylvan Esso will be out in Charlottesville at the Jefferson Theater on Jan. 17 if you want to check them out live. And here they are on video with their song, "Coffee":




Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Late Night Pick: Ex Hex

Ex Hex, who just played Strange Matter with Speedy Ortiz last Thursday, will be on Late Night with Seth Meyers tonight (NBC, 12:35 AM). Ex Hex is the latest project for guitarist/vocalist Mary Timoney (who was in Helium and Wild Flag) with drummer Laura Harris and bassist/vocalist Betsy Wright. You might dig them if you like Cheap Trick, The Ramones, or the New York Dolls. Here they are doing "You Fell Apart" at WNYC earlier this month:




Monday, November 10, 2014

Late Night Pick: Bruce Springsteen

Bruce Springsteen will be on the Daily Show tonight at 11 PM on Comedy Central. Bruce and illustrator Frank Caruso will be on to discuss the new illustrated book based on Bruce's song, "Outlaw Pete". Hopefully, Bruce will play a song also.

Bruce will probably also discuss his appearance in tomorrow night's Concert for Valor, which will be made broadcast by HBO and made available for subscribers and non-subscribers. You can also livestream it at theconcertforvalor.com. The show starts at 7 PM. It will feature Bruce, The Black Keys, Carrie Underwood, Dave Grohl, Eminem, Jennifer Hudson, Jessie J, Metallica, Rihanna, and Zac Brown Band.

Here's a video from Bruce's Nebraska album, "Highway Patrolman". Sean Penn based the screenplay of his 1991 directorial debut The Indian Runner on the song's story. Penn also directed the music video of the song which is made up of clips from that movie.




Friday, November 7, 2014

Late Night Pick: Taylor Swift

Let's just give in. You know you want to. She's adorable. The songs are catchy. Just do it. Everyone else is. Watch Taylor Swift on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live (ABC, 11:35 PM) tonight. Perhaps after you watch the show, you'll want to take two of these and call me in the morning:



Here's Jimmy Page on last night's Late Show talking about his new autobiography:

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Late Night Pick: Jimmy Page

Tonight, Jimmy Page is on Late Show with David Letterman (CBS, 11:35 PM), however, he is not the musical guest. I'm guessing he's on to plug the Led Zep IV and House of the Holy deluxe releases that just came out. Perhaps he'll talk about some new music too. I was just thinking yesterday about how the dude hasn't put any new music out in a looooong time. In fact, it's been 16 years since his last new music release, Page & Plant's "Walking into Clarksdale". Come on, man, you're not getting any younger and Led Zep is not getting back together. Time to step up. Just as long as he doesn't get together with David Coverdale again.

Jimmy was in a pretty awesome movie called "It Might Get Loud" in which Jimmy, Jack White and Edge discuss their different approaches to guitar playing. And of course there is lots of great guitar work. Here's the 3 of them working out "In My Time of Dying":



Here's FKA Twigs' American TV debut Tuesday night on the Tonight Show:

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Weekend Picks: Speedy Ortiz, Jenny Lewis, Alvvays, Hardywood Gingerbread Stout Release Party, People's Blues of Richmond, Southern Belles

As we ease toward Thanksgiving, our local bands come home, outdoor festival season is over, and the national acts start to take time off. Does that mean you should just stay home and rake your leaves? Hell, no! This is a great time to support your favorite local bands or find a new favorite, or find an up and coming national act.

Speaking of new local artists, there will be a whole bunch of them at the Breakout Artist Competition at Canal Club on Thursday. Doors open at 6 and it's $10 to get in. Last year's overall winner, All About a Bubble (from Tulsa OK), will headline the show. Twelve other bands will perform over the night and you can click the event link up there to see the lineup.


Grunge rockers Speedy Ortiz are at Strange Matter Thursday. Doors open at 9. It's $10 in advance, $12 day of show. This is a good all around show so get there early. Ex-Hex, Sundials, & Ar-kaics open the show. Here's Speedy with "Everything's Bigger" at the Pitchfork Music Fest this summer:



The Trongone Band begin their final run of shows at Cary St. Cafe, They have three Thursday night shows this month, then they move on to bigger venues, having outgrown the friendly environs of Cary St. Show starts at 10 and there is no cover. Their last show there on 11/20 will be their 100th show there so they are leaving on a nice round number. They also plan on getting their first EP out soon. Here they are at Cary St on 10/2 doing their original tune, "Ain't It Funny":


Garage/punk/soul/slink/swivel rockers, Lady God, will celebrate the release of their new 7", "Lady God Presents: The Pebbles" on Friday with festivities starting at The Camel, but only starting there. Here is the agenda:
"A 40-passenger coach leavesThe Camel for the Virginia Moonwalker Studio at 6:00 sharp. Cardboard Poncho provides live sights and sounds en route. Then The Milkstains howl into action, followed by an enthralling display of fire stunts by Cody Beastman, Mr. Mud, Bitsy Buttons, and Natty G. The night slinks and swivels to a close with Lady God and you are returned to town to do as you will..."
 You may be able to get a spot on the bus for $20 by checking out the Facebook page for the event. Here's the cool little promo vid for the gig:



Jam band The Southern Belles will be at The Camel for their regular First Friday gig. It's $7 to get in. Doors open at 9 with The Captain Midnight Band from Nashville opening. The Belles just got a nice write-up/interview on the Jambands.com site which you can check out HERE. Here's the Belles at Hogtober this year when they were the first band on. The camera work is a little shaky for the first 2 minutes but the sound is great:



Saturday, Hardywood Brewery releases this year's batch of Gingerbread Stout. The esteemed Beer Advocate site gave the Stout a perfect score of 100. You can pick up 750mL bottles (4 per person limit) or growlers to go. Or just enjoy a 6 or 12 oz. pour, hang out, and listen to some great bands. The event starts at 2 and the music starts in the late evening (I'm guessing 5-ish?) and will go until 9 PM. Here's the band lineup in the order of appearance. This show has great bands from start to finish and considering you've got FREE admission, one of the best beers on the planet, and fine mid-fall weather so you can hang outside if you want, this is the go-to show of the weekend.
Here's Marco With Love's "In the Shade":




And after that's done, you can just head up Boulevard to The Broadberry for People's Blues of Richmond, Night Idea, and Sleepwalkers. Doors open at 8 and it's $10 to get in. They'll have some fine vids for the show courtesy of VIDEOmetry so drop 'em if you got 'em. PBR is also promising some new tunes. Here's PBR getting heavy at the Mustang Music Festival last month in Corolla NC:




Wednesday at The National it's folk/pop from Jenny Lewis and Waxahatchee. Doors open at 7, Waxahatchee comes on at 8. Tix are $22 in advance, $25 day of show. This show sold out in NYC and Philly so get your tickets soon. Here's Jenny performing "She's Not Me" for radio station KCRW a few days ago:


Over at Strange Matter Wednesday, indie poppers Alvvays will appear with openers Absolutely Free and Various Eggs. The show will not be free, nor where there be eggs (OK, there might be eggs, I can't be 100% sure about that), but you can get in for just $10 in advance, $12 day of show. Doors open at 9, music starts at 9:30. Alvvays is just getting back from a tour of the UK and Europe so ask them about their trip. They'll be heading back there in January and February. Here's the video for their latest single, "Next of Kin":



This one goes out to Phil Rudd, drummer for AC/DC, who may have taken this song a bit too seriously...



Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Late Night Pick: FKA Twigs

The first album (LP1) from experimental R&B artist FKA Twigs (aka Tahliah Barnett) is getting rave reviews. See what the hype is about on the Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (NBC, 11:35 PM) tonight. Here she is performing her song, "Hide", inside some Mayan ruins. Why? Why not?



Here's Father John Misty on the Late Show last night performing "Bored in the USA":