Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Weekend Picks: GWAR, Southern Belles, Big Something, Lady God, The Machine

This weekend is all about New Year's Eve. I've never been a huge "go out on NYE" fan., All the prices are doubled. There are a bunch of people out who get drunk twice a year (St. Pat's Day being the other) and use it as an excuse to get obnoxious. There are cops all over the place but you can't get a cab or Uber because so many other people don't want to drive (which I guess is a good thing). But when I do go out on NYE, it's to see a band. Bands usually pull out all the stops and give a little something extra for the occasion.

GWAR has always been a band that knows excess even on a normal night, let alone NYE, so who knows what they'll do at The National Thursday night. Tix are $30 in advance, $35 at the door. Doors open at 7, show starts at 7:30 with openers Kepone, Occultist, and Rocket Queen. Here's GWAR's "Penguin Attack". As always, this is not for the faint of heart or ear.

If you are looking for something a tad mellower on NYE, head to The Camel for the first of two shows with The Southern Belles. NYE has Jackass Flats opening. Doors open at 8. It's $25 in advance, $30 to get in. If you want to go NYE, get your tickets soon. They're going fast. New Year's Day has The Big Payback: James Brown Tribute opening. Tix for that one are $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9. I'm sure there will be some mixing and matching with members of all the bands which should lead to some special musical moments. Also, this will be the last show for Belles drummer Raphael Katchinoff. He'll be joining The Congress in the new year. The band, not the DC institution. Though he couldn't do much worse in DC and we know he'd be a strong advocate for the legalization of marijuana. Here's the Belles in the rain at Mantrabash in September. Not the best camera shot, but the sound is good and you get a good glimpse of Raph's chops.

If you like your punk pop rock n' roll with a side of tacos and champagne, En Su Boca has the NYE for you! It's FREE to get in (a rarity on NYE). Doors open at 10 and the music starts at 11 with Lady God and Cherry Pits.

The Machine (Pink Floyd tribute band) turns on at The National on Friday. They'll be performing the "Wish You Were Here" album in it's entirety, along with other Floyd faves. Tix are $15 - $20 in advance, $18 - $23 at the door. Doors open at 6:30, show starts at 7:30 and no opener is listed. Here's The Machine doing "One Slip" from "Momentary Lapse of Reason":

Jam band Big Something is at The Broadberry on Saturday night. Doors open at 9:30, show starts at 10 with Shack Band opening. Tix are $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Big Something is a nominee for Sirius XM's Jam On channel's Best New Jam Band of 2015. Here they are this past July:

Gladys Night & the Pips member, William Guest, died at the age of 74 this week so let's do one from them. The Pips had the moves!

And, of course, heavy metal/hard rock pioneer, Lemmy Kilmister, of Motorhead and Hawkwind, passed away yesterday at the age of 70. Here's their classic, "Ace of Spades":

And let's do "Overkill" too:

Have a Happy 2016! It's gotta be better than 2015....

Tony Jordan

Monday, December 21, 2015

Weekend Picks: Delbert McClinton, Dark Star Orchestra, Trongone Band, The Congress, DJ Williams Projekt, Susan Greenbaum

It's Christmas weekend and there are some great shows this weekend, so get out of the house while you are on vacation and see some live music! And it looks like you won't have to worry about any snow to keep you from getting to those shows. The one week of the year when I want snow and it's going to be 65 degrees! Sheesh!

Wednesday night, we start with a show I am planning on attending, The Trongone Band are presenting Jerry's Feat, a tribute to Jerry Garcia and Little Feat. Joining the Trongone Band will be Ron Holloway on sax. He's currently a member of Warren Haynes Band and has also played with Susan Tedeschi, Dizzy Gillespie, and Gil Scott-Heron. Jay Starling, guitarist for Love Canon will join in, as will the Grateful Gospel Singers from Keller Williams' gospel Grateful Dead tribute band. This all goes down at The Camel with doors opening at 8 and the show starting at 9. Hunter Pease of The Shack Band will start things with an acoustic set. Tix are $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Here's Trongone Band doing the Dead's "Music Never Stopped":

Over at The Broadberry Wednesday night, The Congress (Americana rock n' roll) will be in session with Talking Heads tribute band, Fear of Music, opening the show. Doors open at 8, music starts at 9, and it's $15 to get in. The Congress recently moved to Richmond VA from Colorado. Unfortunately, this means they will have to lose drummer, Mark Levy, who has chosen to move back to Colorado and splits amicably from the band. This show and then the 12/30 & 31 shows in Colorado will be his last with the band. Good luck, Mark! The Congress jammed on a Paul McCartney and Wings song at Magnolia Fest this year and here that is:

Susan Greenbaum plays solo at Ashland Coffee & Tea Wednesday night. Tix are just $5 and the show starts at 7. Here's Susan a few months ago at Ashland Coffee & Tea with her band:

Not waiting for Santa on Christmas Eve? Head to the The Camel and get funky with DJ Williams Projekt! Santa did arrange for this concert to be FREE. Show starts at 9. DJ Williams has started a GoFundMe project to help get instruments into the hands of underprivileged kids. You can contribute HERE. Here's DJ Williams Projekt in May:

Blues/soul singer Delbert McClinton is in town on Saturday at the Carpenter Theatre. Tix range from $24.50 to $42. Show starts at 6:30 with Hazeltone. The show is billed as "Red, Green and Blues" so assume you'll hear some Christmas tunes. If you recently got a message from Delbert asking for your phone number and being inappropriate with you, relax, it wasn't Delbert. He was hacked. Here's some classic Delbert from 1990:

Trongone Band return to action at The Broadberry on Saturday. This is a benefit in memory of their friend, Cabell Dixon. Proceeds will be used to create a memorial for her at Maymont & Ginter Botanical Garden and also to benefit I Wish I Never Started (iwishineverstarted.org), a nonprofit dedicated to the education and prevention of opiate abuse. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9, tix are $18 in advance, $20 at the door. James Justin and Co. will open.

Grateful Dead tribute band, Dark Star Orchestra, truck into town for two shows at The National on Monday, Dec. 28 and Tuesday, Dec. 29. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 (no opener!) both nights. Tix are $25 advance, $30 at the door both nights. Here they are playing "Shakedown Street" in January.

That'll do it! Have a Merry Christmas! I'll leave you with Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings doing a Christmas classic from their excellent new holiday CD, "It's a Holiday Soul Party":

Tony Jordan

Friday, December 18, 2015

Late Night Pick: Leon Bridges

New soul singer Leon Bridges is on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert tonight (CBS, 11:35 PM). Leon's debut album, "Coming Home", is up for the Grammy for Best R&B Album of the year. From that album, here's "Better Man":

From last night's Tonight Show, here's Chris Stapleton:

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Late Night Pick: Bruce Springsteen, Chris Stapleton

Bruce Springsteen is on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon tonight (11:35 PM, NBC). But I'm not sure if he will be performing or just talking about his new box set "The Ties That Bind: The River Collection". Either way, should be fun. Bruce, if you read this, I need tickets to either the Philly or DC show. Thanks.

And alt-country singer-songwriter Chris Stapleton will be performing so that ain't bad either. Let's do a video from each.

Here's Bruce & the E Street Band from the live DVD that accompanies the box set:

And from Chris Stapleton, here's "Amanda" at the Grand Ol' Opry:

From Monday's Jimmy Kimmel Live, here's two from Gary Clark Jr.:

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Late Night Pick: Gary Clark Jr.

The good news is that most excellent blues guitarist Gary Clark Jr. is on Jimmy Kimmel Live tonight (ABC, 11:35 PM). The bad news is that blowhard, racist, fascist Donald Trump is on the show too. I'll leave it up to you on whether you watch live to see what horrible things Donald will say tonight or whether you DVR and skip through his segment. I like Jimmy but he doesn't have a reputation for being confrontational so the Trump segment should be pretty lightweight.

I need some music to cleanse my soul now. Here's Gary Clark Jr. in 2012 playing some acoustic blues:

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Weekend Picks: Hamaganza, Skalidays 2015, Carbon Leaf, Bio Ritmo, Very Star Wars Xmas Party

'Twas the weekend before Christmas, and all through the town, lots of good bands were playing, all working on their sound. All their amp rigs were hung, on the stage with great care, in the hopes that a crowd, would soon be there.

Thursday night, Star Wars mania hits The Camel  with a Very Star Wars Xmas Party featuring The Milkstains, Imaginary Sons, Venus Guytrap, and The Wimps. It's a FREE show. Doors open at 8, music starts at 9. Star Wars your own self up and get ready to rock like you're in Mos Eisley Spaceport. You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. Here's The Milkstains at Strange Matter on 10/26:

And hopefully one of the bands will play this. Is Marty Balin singing into a light saber?

Bio Ritmo will play all the salsa Christmas songs they know Friday night at The Broadberry. Maybe they'll even play the Star Wars theme salsa style. Or not. It's $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 and no opener is listed. This show will celebrate the release of their vinyl 45 "Oriza". Here's a full Bio Ritmo set from 2010:

Hamaganza celebrates it's 21st year at The Camel Friday night. Doors open at 8:30, show starts around 9. It's a benefit for Feedmore and CodeVA and you get in with either a $10 donation or a juicy ham. Diamond Heist (Neil Diamond tribute), League of Space Pirates (w/Noah Scanlin), Summerhaus (w/Melissa Chase) and Iggy Plop (Iggy Pop tribute) will provide the musical entertainment. There will also be the usual amount of chaotic, anarchic mayhem led by MC Dirtwoman and including jugglers, comedy, whistlers and other stuff. Here's the latest episode from League of Space Pirates. Or this could be a bootleg copy of Star Wars: Episode VII. You be the judge.

Saturday night, Carbon Leaf returns home for their now annual show at The National. Tix are $16 in advance, $20 at the door. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with opener Look Homeward. There are only a few tickets left so if you are on the fence, get off quickly. (That's what she said!) Here's Carbon Leaf doing a song from the classic Christmas special "Emmet Otter's Jug Band Christmas":

The Skalidays 2015 celebration takes place Saturday at Broadberry. Tix are $10 in advance, $15 at the door. The show features Murphy's Kids, Major and the Monbacks, Mighty Joshua, Neighborhood Friendly, and Nesta. Doors open at 8 and the music gets under way at 9. Bring some canned goods and warm clothing to donate because the show benefits Richmond Food Not Bombs, Central VA Food Bank and Performing Statistics. Here's Murphy's Kids rocking Talking Heads' "Burning Down the House" a few days ago:

That'll do it. Have a great weekend! I'll leave you with Carrie Fisher's Life Day song from the end of the Star Wars Holiday Special. Carrie said she was so high she doesn't even remember doing this. I love Carrie Fisher.

And now, a word from our sponsors. Like Willie, I enjoy soldering more than anything. And that Sunday night CBS lineup looks hot! Reggie bars!

Tony Jordan

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Weekend Picks: Speedy Ortiz, Lady God, Big Payback: James Brown Tribute

Get down with your bad self on Friday night at The Broadberry. The Big Payback: A Tribute to James Brown will help you. Tix are $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9. Rattan DJ (Rei Alvarez from Bio Ritmo) starts spinning at 8 and will spin in between sets. No other band opening. Here's a little "Sex Machine" to get you on up:

Hardywood has another Christmas beer release on Saturday. This time it's another variation on the Gingerbread Stout. It's called Christmas Morning and it's Gingerbread Stout conditioned on locally roasted coffee beans. Things get started at 2 PM. There will be the usual array of yummy food trucks for your culinary pleasure. Music starts at 5 with Grass Panther, the newest project from Michael Harl of Canary Oh Canary and Manzara). Then, comes Vug Arakas from LA playing "Midwestern rock and roll with a warm heart". Next, is Raccoon Fighter out of Queens, NY, "A three-part tumultuous psych-rock/fuzz-pop assault on the senses - a gritty, cathartic blend of musical bravado and camaraderie that propels you forward". Finally, RVA's own Lady God. They play "bristling surf guitar, webby bass lines, and sneering dual vocals compose an oddly satisfying vintage rock n’ roll salad they call “Slink.”" Here's Lady God's set in Gainsville, FL in September:

Grunge rockers Speedy Ortiz are at The Camel on Monday. Tix are $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Bring some extra cash because if you make a donation to the Girls Rock Camp Foundation you can get some free Speedy Ortiz schwag. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with Aye Nako and Atta Girl. Here's Speedy's new video, "My Dead Girl", a tribute to both David Lynch and Muppets:

That's it this week!

Been listening to this one a lot this week. This is Drive-By Truckers' "World of Hurt" performed live at Plan 9 Records in 2006 (language NSFW). I was there and it was one of the best shows I've ever seen them do. It was a benefit for the Harvey Family Memorial Endowment and this was the emotional highlight of the show.

Tony Jordan

Late Night Pick: Lizzo

Alternative rapper Lizzo is on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert tonight (11:35 PM, CBS). Her new album, Big GRRRL Small World comes out tomorrow. Here's Lizzo singing about "Bus Passes & Happy Meals":

Here's Kurt Vile on last night's Late Show:

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Late Night Pick: Kurt Vile

Philly-based indie rocker Kurt Vile is on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert tonight (CBS, 11:35 PM).  Kurt's latest album, "B'lieve I'm Goin' Down" is being mentioned on quite a few year-end best lists. Here's one from Kurt's 2009 album, "Childish Prodigy":

Here's Nick Lowe and Los Straitjackets on last night's Conan:

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Late Night Pick: Nick Lowe & Los Straitjackets

A match made in heaven, or in a wrestling ring in Mexico, Nick Lowe & Los Straitjackets will perform together on Conan tonight (11 PM, TBS). They've been touring and playing together as part of Nick's "Quality Holiday Revue" so expect some Christmas music tonight. Here they are playing "Half a Boy and Half a Man" together:

Here's Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings on last night's Conan with "Just Another Christmas Song", and a bonus track that wasn't shown on TV of "I'll Be Home For Christmas":

Monday, December 7, 2015

Late Night Pick: Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings will, no doubt, be playing a song from their new Christmas album, It's a Holiday Soul Party, on Conan tonight at 11 PM (TBS). If you miss them there, you can also catch them on "Michael Buble's Christmas in Hollywood" on 12/10 on NBC at 8. Though you may want to DVR that and catch it later so you can skip over Celine Dion. Since it's the first day of Hanukkah, here's the lyric video for Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings' "8 Days (of Hanukkah)" which fills the void for a soul Hanukkah song.

Here's Weezer on Conan last week:

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Weekend Picks: Whitehorse, Ex Hex, Car Seat Headrest, Southern Belles, Gull, Mekong Xpress, Iggy Plop and the Splooges

The weekend starts with a show at the new location of Sound of Music Recording Studios on 1710 Altamont Ave, just off Boulevard. It's $7 to get in and it's BYOB. It starts at 7. The Iggy Pop tribute band, Iggy Plop and the Splooges will headline. Dismal Swamp Lords will also play this night of garage rock along with El Presidente, Lucky Stiffs, and Roper/Furley. Here's some Iggy Pop (no Stooges despite what it says in the title) from '77 to get you ready for the show:

The Southern Belles do their First Friday thing at The Camel this week. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9. The Belles will do two sets. no opener. It's $7 in advance, $10 at the door. The Belles played acoustic on WNRN in C'ville a couple months ago. Here's "Whiskey Song" from that show:

Hardywood busts out the Bourbon Gingerbread Stout on Saturday. Things get underway at 11 AM there and the music starts at 5:30 with Gull (looping guitar, drums and distorted vocalizations through a crazy mask. Pretty cool, crazy stuff), Manatree and Spooky Cool. Not sure which band is playing when, but check the event Facebook page and maybe they'll post the info there. As always, it's FREE to get in and there will be food trucks there to provide yummy munchies. Here's Gull playing in France:

Monday at The Answer Brewpub, they'll release their Mega Blast Triple IPA. Music starts at 9:30 with Mekong Xpress & Get Fresh Horns and it's FREE to get in. Here's Mekong Xpress playing "Woman's Gotta Have It":

Indie/alternative/rock/power pop/lo-fi/singer-songwriter Car Seat Headrest is at Strange Matter Tuesday. Doors open at 9. Ne-Hi and Don Babylon open. You might dig Car Seat Headrest if you like Modest Mouse, Radiohead or Animal Collective. Here they are playing at KEXP in Seattle in October:

Wednesday night at Strange Matter, Wild Flag and Helium's Mary Timony leads her band Ex Hex to the stage to rock your socks off. Doors open at 8. It's $15 to get in. Get in early, one, because it will probably sell out and, two, because the openers Mac McCaughan & the Non-Believers and The Arkaics are pretty good. You might dig Ex Hex if you like 70's NYC punk rock, Speedy Ortiz, or Courtney Barnett. Here's the band at the Pickathon Festival:

Whitehorse is an Americana/indie rock band from Canada made up of husband & wife team Melissa McClelland and Luke Doucet. They'll be at Capital Ale House Downtown on Thursday night. Tix are $8 in advance, $10 day of show. Doors open at 7:30, show starts at 8 with opener Aaron Lee Tasjan. Their new album, "The Northern South Vol, 1" will be out on February 16. Here's "My Babe" from that release:

I'll end this blog with a tribute to a good friend we lost this week. Joan Echtenkamp Klein died on Wednesday morning. She'll be remembered for her wonderful spirit, her kindness, her work as an archivist at the University of Health Sciences library at UVA and her wild laugh. Joan, her husband, Mike, and I saw many concerts together over the years, including a couple from one of her favorites (and mine), Bruce Springsteen. She even gifted me with a t-shirt from the Springsteen exhibit that she was lucky enough to check out at the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame. This one goes out to you, Joan. Don't rest in peace. Wherever you are, I hope you are getting wild, dancing, drinking wine and laughing that wonderful laugh.

Tony Jordan

Late Night Pick: Weezer

Weezer rocks Conan tonight on TBS at 11 PM. Weezer will perform their new single, "Thank God For Girls", a sentiment I'm not really feeling these days, but I'm sure it's a fine song. Here's Weezer's classic, "Say It Ain't So":

Here's the Flaming Lips talking about "Bad Days" on the Tonight Show the other night: