Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Weekend Picks: New Year's Eve Shows, Infamous Stringdusters, Dark Star Orchestra, Yarn, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, Locust Honey, Miramar

It's a big weekend with lots of shows and New Year's Eve!

Dark Star Orchestra, the Grateful Dead tribute band, trucks into The National for two shows on Wednesday and Thursday. Tix are $25 advance, $30 day of show. The doors open at 7, show starts at 8 and there is no opener. DSO will play two sets, as always. Here's DSO in C'ville in November:

Wednesday night at The Broadberry, former Richmond electro jam band Former Champions get together for a reunion show. Doors open at 8, show starts at 8:30, Kenneka Cook opens and DJ Phil Dice will spin between sets. Tix are $8 advance, $10 day of show. Here's a set from Former Champions in 2014:

Americana band Yarn hits the stage at The Broadberry Thursday night. Dalton Dash will open the show at 9, doors open at 8. Tix are $15. Their album "This Is The Year" recently came in at number 46 on the Americana Music Association's Radio Albums of 2016. From that album, here's "Carolina Heart":

For a good happy hour show on Friday, head to Hardywood for Locust Honey and The Atkinsons. The tap room opens at 4 and The Atkinsons kick off the music at 6. It's FREE to get in. Here's the press blurb on Locust Honey:
As Locust Honey, Chloe Edmonstone and Meredith Watson bring their experience in Old-Time, Bluegrass, and Pre-War Blues to both their original material and the traditional songs and tunes of the American Southeast. With a rotating instrumentation of fiddles, open-back and resonator banjos, acoustic and resonator guitars, they set an emphasis on lively arrangements that showcase their signature vintage vocal harmonies. Joined by John Miller, (The Fox Hunt, The Hackensaw Boys,) on upright bass, they have been touring the US, UK and Ireland since 2012.
 Here's Locust Honey in July:

Jam band Pigeons Playing Ping Pong are at The Broadberry Friday night. PPPP will be playing at Lockn' Festival in 2017 so you can get a sneak preview on a smaller stage Friday. Tix are $14 advance, $16 day of show, doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with Elm opening. They've been known to throw Star Wars references, lyrically and musically, into their sets, so here's hoping they'll do a little tribute to Carrie Fisher aka Princess Leia at the show. Here's PPPP playing in September:

Miramar (w/members of Bio Ritmo) bring some Latin flavor playing Puerto Rican boleros (joined by a string quartet!) to Gallery5 Friday evening. Tix are $8 advance, $10 at the door, Doors open at 8, music starts at 9 with openers Yeni Nostalji and Armando Muñoz. Miramar has been featured on NPR's All Things Considered and here they are performing at The Kennedy Center in July:

Bluegrass/newgrass band The Infamous Stringdusters do two nights at The National, Friday and New Year's Eve. Friday's show has tix are $18 advance, $23 day of show, doors at 7, show at 8 with opener Jon Stickley Trio. NYE tix are $28 advance, $33 day of show, same times with opener Billy Strings. The Stringdusters got to collaborate like Ryan Adams and this lineup at Lockn' with Phil Lesh, Jon Fishman & Page McConnell (from Phish), Joe Russo, and Anders Osborne.

You can kick off New Year's Eve with your kids at Noon Year's Eve at noon on Saturday at Lamplighter Coffee Roaster's Addison St. location. No BS! Brass Band will provide the music. Lamplighter will provide the free cocoa. The ball will drop. There will be much rejoicing.

If you prefer a proper NYE show with No BS! Brass Band, they will be at Vagabond on NYE. Tix are $40 (including late night buffet and champagne toast) or $75 (includes the aforementioned and a 4 course prix fixe dinner). The doors open at 9 and a special guest will open. Here's No BS! at Plan 9 last month doing a Michael Jackson favorite:

The Taters ring in NYE at The County Seat Restaurant in Powhatan. The show starts at 8. It's $10 to get in and reservations are recommended. Here's The Taters on VA This Morning a few months ago:

The Shack Band and Jackass Flats are at The Camel for NYE. They'll get together at some point to form the Shackass Flats Band to pay tribute to rock icons we lost in 2016. Tix are $25 advance, $30 day of show and that includes champagne toast and hors d'oeuvres. Tickets are going fast so don't sleep on this if you want to go. Here's one from The Shack Band:

The Broadberry will feature yacht rock tribute band Three Sheets to the Wind on NYE. Tix are $40 advance, $50 day of show and $75 VIP. Every attendee gets a free live CD from Three Sheets. Need something to get you ready for the show? Watch the hilarious 12 part Yacht Rock series. They are only 5 minutes each. There's a story behind every song. And it's a NSFW story. Here's episode 1, the story behind "What a Fool Believes":

Elana Lisa & The Hot Mess bring their swing/jazz/blues to The Tin Pan for NYE. Doors open at 7 and the show starts at 8:15. Tix are $27.50 and includes champagne toast. You can also get dinner reservations for a prix fixe menu. Here's the band earlier this year:

If you want some Grateful Dead for NYE, head to Iron Horse Restaurant in Ashland for Long Strange Night. They'll mix in some originals, some Beatles and some blues too. Things get underway at 9 and no cover is listed. Here's the band doing "Cold Rain & Snow" this summer:

That'll do it! Maybe I'll see you at the Stringdusters show on Friday night! Have a Happy New Year and good riddance to 2016. We lost too many good people this year and Carrie Fisher today was the last straw. Here's the Princess Leia theme from STAR WARS EPISODE IV "A New Hope" (1977).
Composed by John Williams and performed by the London Symphony Orchestra. May the Force be with you.

Tony Jordan

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Weekend Picks: Trongone Band, The Congress, Antero, Fear of Music

Not much going on this weekend due to Christmas and all. But rest up for next week, because that will be a hot one.

Thursday night, Richmond reggae band Antero reunites for a show at The Broadberry. Tix are $10, doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with openers King Easy and Burning Fire. Antero will be bringing back some songs they haven't played in many years, and will share the stage with some old school and first time special guests. Here's Antero in 2015:

Friday night at The Broadberry get your Talking Heads on with Fear of Music (Talking Heads tribute band). Josh Small & Easy Company open the show at 9, Doors open at 10. $10 advance, $15 day of show. This is a holiday bash so perhaps the band will play such Talking Heads Christmas classics as "Psycho Santa", "Once in the Christmastime", "Decorate the House", and "This Must Be The Place (For the Office Christmas Party. I Think We Put Our Coats Over There.)". For your viewing pleasure, here is the complete "Stop Making Sense":

Friday night at The Camel, The Congress throws their third annual Christmas Eve Eve show. Russell Lacy opens at 9. Doors at 8. Tix are $12 advance, $15 day of show. Special guest friends will sit in throughout the night with the band. Here they are doing "Oh Babe" at the Broadberry in September:

Monday & Tuesday night The Trongone Band comes Home for the Holidays at The Broadberry. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 both nights. Tix for Monday night are $10 advance, $18 day of show, Tuesday night tix are $10 advance, $12 at the door. Both nights will feature Ron Holloway on sax and special guest TBA. South Hill Banks opens both nights. Guitarist Andrew Trongone recently sat in with Anders Osborne and his band in NYC. Here's Trongone Band playing their original, "Anne Marie" last month:

That will do it until next week. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy Boxing Day/St. Stephen's Day! Here's one from the late Sharon Jones' Christmas album, "It's a Holiday Soul Party" which came out last year:

Tony Jordan

Friday, December 16, 2016

Weekend Picks: Hamaganza, Skalidays, Carbon Leaf, Phantogram, Clair Morgan, No BS! Brass Band, Bush League, Blind & Dirty

This is a very busy weekend. Lots of local bands doing benefits and getting a last gig in before the holiday season. So you can rock out and do good at the same time.

You can do happy hour (or happy four hours) at Hardywood on Friday night starting at 4 PM. The music will start at 6 PM with Clair Morgan, Young Rapids (”..a spectacular rainbow of sound.. orchestration constantly diverts to new forks in the road..”-Spin (“Melt” premiere)) and Hot Reader (Richmond-based four-piece plying the psychic craft with audacious licks and a reverence for classic pop songwriting.). The show ends at 10 so you can still get home early and get some sleep for Christmas shopping the next day. The bands are collecting canned goods to be donated to FeedMore so bring some goodies with you especially since it's FREE to get in. USA TODAY named Clair Morgan's album "New Lions and The Not-Good Night" to their 50 best of 2016 list. Here's Clair Morgan's "How to Set Your Bed on Fire":

No BS! Brass Band is at Broadberry  Friday night collecting canned goods for FeedMore. Admission is $10 advance, $15 Day Of Show or $8 advance with canned goods, $10 Day Of Show with canned goods. The doors open at 8 and the music gets under way at 9 with Luray. They will also be releasing the NO BS! CREAM ALE brewed in collaboration with Three Notch'd Brewery, RVA Mag, The Broadberry, and No BS! For every beer poured, $1 will be donated to FEEDmore. So drink up and Uber or cab home. Here's No BS! at Plan 9 Records (a fine place to find a gift for your favorite music lover or music blogger):

Grateful Dead tribute band Blind and Dirty play Cary St. Cafe Friday night. $5 to get in and it starts at 10. This will be Blind and Dirty's last show of 2016 so if you're a fan, get out and catch it. Here they are performing "The Other One" last month in Williamsburg with Lamb of God's Mark Morton on guitar.

Carbon Leaf does their annual home for the holidays show at The National Saturday night. Tix are $17 advance, $20 at the door. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with the Will Overman Band. Here's "The Friendship Song" which the kids, and those of you with kids, may know from the "Curious George 2" soundtrack:

The annual "Hamaganza" Benefit for The Food Bank"Feed More"!! Hams for the Hamless!!!" takes place at The Camel on Saturday night. Doors open at 8:30, the extravaganza (it's more than just a show) starts at 9:30. Featuring this years Host "Dirty" Dean Owen, T.V.'s Danny P., Local Heart Throb Corey Axt, The Dangerous Herschel Stratego, Noah Scalin and The League of Space Pirates, Atom Eve Eclipse,the very sexy Maximum Zero , Jonathon "The Juggler", The Hamaganza House Band, Donnie "Dirt Woman" Corker (of course),and many more. Admission is $10.00 or a Ham!! No Spam excepted!! ALL proceeds go to Feed More!! You never know what or who you will see at this event. A mix of music, bawdy comedy, local celebrities and quasi-celebrities and and other talents, it's always weird and often entertaining. And if you can't make it to "Star Wars: Rogue One" this weekend, League of Space Pirates is the next best thing.

The Broadberry hosts Skalidays with Murphy's Kids, Imaginary Sons, Space Koi, Signal Fire, and JACKMOVE. Doors open at 8, show starts at 8:30, $10 advance, $15 day of show. Proceeds from the show will benefit the James River Association. Here's Murphy's Kids:

Blues band The Bush League play their last gig of 2016 at Lakeside's Sonny's Bar & Grill on Saturday night. Show starts at 8:30. No cover charge is listed. Here's the band playing "Manish Boy" at The Camel in October:

Sunday, trip-hop alternative indie electronic dream-pop rock band Phantogram are at The National. Tix are $24.50 advance, $28 day of show, doors open at 6:30, show starts at 7:30 with opener Foreign Air. Phantogram is out supporting their new album, "Three". Here's Phantogram playing in NYC recently:

That'll do it. Have a great weekend! Here's a new Christmas song from RVA's Natalie Prass and she's getting her dance groove on:

Tony Jordan

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Weekend Picks: Reverend Horton Heat, Sad13, Thievery Corporation, Local Natives, Futurebirds, Turkuaz, Punk for Presents

There's thieves in the temple tonight. Well, actually it's lush electronica world music band Thievery Corporation at The National on Thursday night. Tix are $39.50, $43 day of show, doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with opener The ReMINDers. You'll probably hear some tracks from Thievery Corporations new album, "The Temple of I&I" which is set for release on 2/10/17. Here's their 30 minute performance on KEXP in October. Love how the first song mixes bossa nova beats with a sitar.

At The National on Friday, it's a psychobilly freakout with Reverend Horton Heat, Nashville Pussy, Unknown Hinson, and Lucky Tubb & the Modern Day Troubadours. Doors open at 6:30, show starts at 7:30, tix are $19.50 advance, $23 day of show. Here's part of the press blurb on Reverend Horton Heat:
Seeing Reverend Horton Heat live is a transformative experience. Flames come off the guitars. Heat singes your skin. There’s nothing like the primal tribal rock & roll transfiguration of a Reverend Horton Heat show. Jim becomes a slicked-back 1950’s rock & roll shaman channeling Screamin’ Jay Hawkins through Buddy Holly, while Jimbo incinerates the Stand-Up Bass like Jerry Lee Lewis on steroids. And then there are the “Heatettes”. Those foxy rockabilly chicks dressed in poodle-skirts and cowboy boots dreamily dancing the night away. It’s like being magically transported into a Teen Exploitation picture from the 1950’s that’s currently taking place in the future.
Listening to the Reverend Horton Heat is tantamount to injecting pure musical nitrous into the hot-rod engine of your heart. The Reverend’s commandants are simple. Rock hard, drive fast, and live true. And no band on this, or any other, planet rocks harder, drives faster, or lives truer than the Reverend Horton Heat. These “itinerant preachers” actually practice what they preach. They live their lives by the Gospel of Rock & Roll.
Here's a sexy little video from the Reverend, "Let Me Teach You How to Eat":

Strange Matter brings you the dreamy Americana of Futurebirds, The Trillions and Camp Howard on Friday night. Doors open at 8, music starts at 9, $10 advance, $12 day of show. Futurebirds recently released part 1 of a 2 EP series called Portico, named after the repurposed Baptist church outside of their hometown of Athens GA where they recorded the EPs. And that sentence right there goes a long way toward describing their sound, steeped in Southern roots and repurposed by the college town and music of Athens. Here they are playing "Bad Man" at Pickathon 2016:

If you want to give for the holiday while you rock the f**k out, head to Punks for Presents: Night 1 at Wonderland Saturday night. All of the proceeds from the events go directly to the Childrens Hospital of Richmond. There will be tons of raffle prizes at each show! And for music on Night 1, you've got  ZOMBIE X-MAS (preforming the best of Rob Zombie and White Zombie) along with ELVZIG (preforming Danzig) and CELTIC FROSTY THE SNOWMAN (preforming Celtic Frost). It all starts at 9 PM, tix are $10 at the door and $8 if you bring a canned good. Here's my fav White Zombie song:

Sad13 is the poppy side project of Speedy Ortiz's Sadie Dupuis and she'll be at Strange Matter Sunday night. Vagabon, Emily Reo, and Told Slant. It's $10 to get in. Sad13's debut album is called "Slugger" and it's getting fine reviews including one from The Skinny who said the album was full of, " Nuanced, thoughtful discussions broadcast with power and volume". Here's "Get a Yes" from "Slugger":

Monday at The National, ethereal indie pop/rockers Local Natives will perform along with Brice Woodall. Doors open at 6:30, show starts at 7:30. Tix are $23 advance, $26 day of show. Local Natives is already getting spots on some of the big festivals next year including Hangout, Primavera (in Barcelona), and they just got back from an international tour that included Istanbul, Copenhagen, Berlin & Stockholm. I love this song Local Natives did back in 2010, "Sun Hands":

The funky double bill of Turkuaz and The New Mastersounds is at Broadberry Tuesday night. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9, tix are $20 advance, $22 at the door. This promises to be a fun show and be prepared to dance. Here they are at Lockn' fest in August. I unfortunately missed them because I think they played early one day and I was still shaking off the night before. But I may have to make up for it by catching them at The Broadberry.

That'll do it. Have a great weekend! Here's the new one from the Rolling Stones:

Tony Jordan