Thursday, May 8, 2014

Weekend Picks: Lord Huron, Jamey Johnson, Rockn' for Lockn' 2, Chromeo, Blood Red Shoes, Balloon Fest, Beer Fest, Fear of Music

The weekend begins, as all weekends in May & June, with Friday Cheers on Brown's Island. This week it's alt-indie-folk-rock band, Lord Huron. You'll dig these guys if you like Fleet Foxes, My Morning Jacket, Vampire Weekend, Jake Bugg, Bon Iver, or Crosby, Stills & Nash or just great vocal harmonies over dreamy, folk rock. Lord Huron will be on at 8. Local band, The Northerners, will open at 6:30. Lord Huron will be hitting many of the big festivals this summer including High Sierra, Summer Meltdown, RBC Royal Bank Bluesfest (in GB), Mo Pop Festival, Shaky Knees (on Saturday), and Forecastle. Here's their latest video, "Ends of the Earth" featuring some really cool animation:

Down in Pocahontas Park this weekend it's the Country Music Campout. You can get tickets for both Saturday or Sunday or just pick one day or the other. Two day tickets run $40 - $80. Friday features Dustin Lynch, Frankie Ballard, and Chris Stapleton (tix run $20 - $40, show starts at 5:45). Saturday is Jamey Johnson, Charlie Worsham and Chris Hennesse (tix run $25 - $40, show starts at 4:40). Jamey Johnson is the real deal. You won't hear songs about sitting on the tailgate of his pickup truck, drinking beer by the river with a girl like 90% of pop country these days. This dude writes songs in the classic country tradition about booze, drugs, jail, hookers, and losing everything you've got. That's why you don't hear him on country radio and why you should listen to him. Check out this tune, "High Cost of Living":

Friday night at the RVA Theater (formerly known as Epic Theater, formerly known as Hat Factory, formerly know as Toad's Place), the second round of the battle of bands known as Rockn' to Lockn' goes down. The ultimate winner gets to play at the Lockn' Festival this September. This round features Downbeat Switch, Seth Stainback and Roosterfoot, The Trongone Band, and Horsehead. Show starts at 8, it's $8 in advance and $10 at the door. Expect mucho jamming.

At Meadow Event Park up in Doswell, VA Saturday, it's the Mid-Atlantic Balloon Fest. I don't mean party balloons or nitrous balloons (calm down, hippies) but big-ass hot-air balloons. It'll run Saturday & Sunday from 6 AM to 9 PM Saturday and 6 AM to 5 PM Sunday. Tix are $15 for adults and $5 for kids. Besides the 20 hot-air balloons, there will be live music, arts & crafts, wine tasting, food, craft beers and a kid's area.

Also on Saturday, you've got the 4th Annual Virginia Hops & Barley Festival where 288 meets Huguenot Rd. It'll go from 1 PM to 8 PM. There will be lots of craft beer (duh), food and live music. Taster tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Non-taster tickets are $10.

UK alt-punk rock duo Blood Red Shoes will rip it up at Strange Matter Saturday night along with Radkey and Imaginary Sons. Doors open at 9 and it's $10 to get in. BRS will be at a ton of major festivals in Europe this summer and they hit Richmond as they begin to dip their toe into the USofA. Here's their latest video, "Speech Coma". Warning: don't watch this video while you are eating lunch. It's kind of gross.

If you are a mom and you like the Talking Heads, then head to Forest Hill Park on Sunday evening for a FREE performance from Talking Heads tribute band, Fear of Music. I can't recall any Heads songs about mothers, but if there is one, Fear of Music will find it and play it. Or they'll just play "Drugs" which really rocked the last time I saw them. Because moms sometimes need drugs to get through their day. Remember "Mother's Little Helper"? The show will start at 6. Here's the Talking Heads doing "Drugs" with Adrien Belew in 1980 in Rome: (sorry can't embed, go HERE. It's worth it.).

Tuesday night at The National, it's the campy, fun, 80's-ish, electronic dance music of Chromeo. The show starts at 8 and it looks like it's just Chromeo so get there on time. Tix are $22 in advance, $27 at the door. You might dig Chromeo if you like Prince, Zapp, Cameo, Rick James, Giorgio Moroder, Daft Punk, LCD or Soundsystem. Here's Chromeo's 'Jealous (I Ain't With It)". If you are reading this at work or Friday, save this one for 4:30 PM and you'll be ready to dance out of work right to happy hour.

Have a great weekend! See you at Cheers!

Tony Jordan