Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Weekend Picks: Legendary Shack Shakers, Shawn Mullins, New Stew, Big Mama Shakes, Taters, Runaway Gin, Hazeltone

No alternative facts here. Just the real deal on who's playing where in the RVA this weekend.

Start your weekend right with The Legendary Shack Shakers blues, punk, rock and country Southern Gothic hell-for-leather roadshow at The Broadberry on Thursday. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers The Brains & The Delta Bombers. Here's a taste from the Shack Shakers press blurb:
Although not legendary upon being named, the band has grown into its reputation the last several years due to their heavy tour schedule, six critically acclaimed studio albums, and songs that have been featured on television shows such as HBO’s True Blood. Past tour mates and fans include Reverend Horton Heat, Rancid, The Black Keys, Slim Cessna’s Auto Club, and Hank Williams III. Robert Plant is also a noted Legendary Shack Shakers fan, and picked the band to open for him on his 2005 tour of Europe. Plant named the band's third album Believe as one of his favorite records of 2005. The list of esteemed admirers goes on to include horror novelist Stephen King, who listed “CB Song” as among his iPod’s Top Five in a 2008 Entertainment Weekly article. Such a wealth of devoted fans over the years has only added to the mystique that the Legendary Shack Shakers possess, carrying them down the road toward new creative pursuits and barn-shaking tunes.
Here's the Shack Shakers playin' in the "Mud":

Louisiana singer/songwriter Marc Broussard is at The Tin Pan Friday night. The show might be sold out, but if tix become available they'll run $45 advance, $50 at the door. Door open at 6 and Jamie McLean Band opens the show at 7:30. Get there early to see Jamie. He used to play with Dirty Dozen Brass Band and his band has been touring with Gregg Allman, Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi, Drive By Truckers, Gov't Mule, Soulive, Jackie Greene, Blues Traveler, North Mississippi Allstars and more. Here's one from Marc:

And one from Jamie:

At Capital Ale House Downtown, help yourself to a big serving of The New Stew Friday night. Who's in the Stew, you say? Here's the lineup:
Corey Glover – Vocals (Living Colour, Galactic)
Roosevelt Collier - Lap Steel/ Pedal Steel (Lee Boys)
Yonrico Scott – Percussion (Derek Trucks Band, Royal Southern Brotherhood)
Dave Yoke – Guitar (Susan Tedeschi Band, Dr. John, Scrapomatic)
Jared Stone – Drums (Stone's Stew)
Matt Slocum – Piano (Oteil and the Peacemakers, Col. Bruce Hampton & Aquarium Rescue Unit, Lee Boys)
Jonathan Meadows from The Congress is going to sit in too. These soul/jazz/blues vets will pay tribute to the classic album "Bill Withers - Live from Carnegie Hall" by playing the album in it's entirety. Tix are $20 for GA or $32.50 for VIP and you can get a $20 discount HERE. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8. Here's the band performing "Harlem/Cold Baloney" from that album last year:

The Taters kick off their 20th year with a show they are calling Bridge of The Cyber Taters. Will this be a prog-rock sci-fi epic rock opera? (Probably not.) Will they wear robot costumes? (Maybe!) Find out at O'Tooles Friday night. The show starts at 8 and goes until 11. Here's the band last week on Cary NC:

Phish is off the road for a while and if you miss them already, head to The Camel Friday night. Runaway Gin - A Tribute to Phish will take the stage at 10:30. There's no opener and the doors open at 9:30. Tix are $10 advance, $12 at the door. This is the Richmond debut of the band, who have played 200 shows, earning them the self-appointed title of World's Most Active Phish Tribute Band. Here they are doing "Tweezer > Sneaking Sally Through The Alley" in November:

Big Mama Shakes will shake your big ass Saturday night at Garden Grove Brewing Company. This will be a release party for Big Mama Brown Ale. I always loved Big Mama Brown and I'm glad they named an ale after her. Oh wait, it's a brown ale? I get it. It's a collaboration between the band and Garden Grove to make a fine brown ale. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with openers Dharma Bombs. It's FREE to get in. The band can rock the Southern/classic/blues rock thing pretty loud but they get a little introspective on this song, "Places":

Americana band Hazeltone is at Poe's Pub Saturday night with a special guest opening the show. Doors at 9, show starts at 10. No cover charge is listed. Here's their description of themselves:
We play B side, off the wall stuff from the Tom Petty, Rolling Stones, REM, David Bowie, Neil Young. Our originals lean towards Better than Ezra ,Petty Doors, John Mayer influence. We are a 7 member band that includes 12 & 6 string acoustic, harmonica, 6 string electric guitar, violin, piano, accordion,sax drums, and bass...We are an all original song band with some hand crafted covers.

Shawn Mullins is at The Tin Pan Sunday night. Doors open at 5, show starts at 6:40 with opener Rick Brantley. Shawn's big hit was "Lullaby" in 1998 but he's continued to make great storytelling music: emotional, romantic. sometimes cynical, sometimes humorous. Tix are $25 advance, $30 at the door. Here he is performing "Gulf Of Mexico" last March.

That'll do it. I'll see you at Legendary Shack Shakers on Thursday. Maybe Taters or Runaway Gin on Friday. Maybe Big Mama Shakes Saturday. I'll leave you with "Magic", a song Bruce Springsteen wrote about "alternative facts" during the Bush II era. Who knew it could get worse.

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Weekend Picks: Umphrey's McGee, Doyle Bramhall II, Be Bad Weekend, Poe's B'day Bash, Karen Jonas, Sammi Lanzetta's B'day Bash

A fairly busy weekend with bands starting to hit the road again after holiday break.

We'll start with two shows at The National from prog/jam band Umphrey's McGee. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with Spafford opening on both Friday and Saturday. Tix are $27.50 but Saturday's show is SOLD OUT so hurry and buy those tix if you want to go Friday because they are running low too. If you miss 'em, get some Lockn' tickets because they'll be back there this year. Here they are on 1/14 in Atlanta:

Another multi-night show starts Friday night. This is one is Friday through Sunday at Strange Matter and it's the Be Bad Weekend 2017. If you are ready to rock hard, this is the show (shows?) for you. It's three days of celebrating women in punk and hardcore. And the ladies rock for a good cause. Proceeds go to Girls Rock RVA. Oh, and also to some of the out of town bands for gas money. Shows start at 7 each day and it's $8 advance, $10 at the door. You can get a discounted show price if you bring NEW picks, instrument cables, xlr cables, clip-on tuners, 9v batteries, drum sticks, and/or power strips!! Girls Rock! RVA needs NEW supplies, not used! There are different lineups all three days. To see whose playing, click that link or look at that poster up there.

Murphy's Kids bring their punk/reggae/ska to The Camel Friday night. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with Eastern Standard Time and King Easy. It's $7 to get in. There will also be chances to win tickets for 2017 SuperNova International Ska Festival. Here's Murphy's Kids:

Like some literature with some rock n' roll sprinkled in? Head to Poe's Birthday Bash at The Poe Museum on Saturday. It'll be twelve hours (noon to midnight) of performances, music, film, tours, exhibits, fun, and games for the whole family, all for just $5 per person. You can check the link there for the full schedule. Bands are scheduled to play at:

Charming Disaster seem made for this event with songs like this one, "Ghost Story":

Sammi Lanzetta (of Venus Guytrap) celebrates her birthday with a show at Sound of Music Studios Saturday night. It's $7 to get in, doors open at 7, show starts at 8. It's BYOB (cans only please, no glass). Sammi's gonna play last because it's her birthday so she gets what she wants. Opening the show will be Big Baby & Pete Curry. Here's a song that is near and dear to my heart if anyone knows my love for Sudafed:

Suzie & the G-Tones are at Ashland Coffee & Tea Saturday night. Show starts at 8 (no opener) and it's $8 advance, $10 at the door. They've got a new album out, "Wine, Tears & Rain", that they'll be playing a bunch of stuff from along with some choice covers. And if you've seen the band before, you've never seen them like this, as they just became a five-piece, adding Scott Young on sax and keys. Here's "Battlegrounds" from their new album:

Fredericksburg based alt/trad-country singer Karen Jonas is at the new Steam Bell Beer Works on Sunday afternoon from 2 to 5. Don't cost nothing to get in. Karen's 2016 album, "Country Songs", is starting to get noticed not just in the US, but worldwide. And check out the great guitar work of her collaborator, Tim Bray. Here's the title track from that new album.

Underground guitar hero Doyle Bramhall II is at Capital Ale House Downtown Wednesday. You may not have heard of him, but you've most definitely heard him. He was recruited at 18 by Jimmie Vaughan to play with The Fabulous Thunderbirds. Then he joined Arc Angels with Charlie Sexton and Stevie Ray Vaughan's rhythm section, Chris Layton & Tommy Shannon. Then he joined Roger Waters' band. Next, he started a long time, ongoing collaboration with Eric Clapton in his bands and on his albums. He's also played with Sheryl Crow, Tedeschi Trucks, Elton John, Questlove, Gary Clark Jr., Erykah Badu, Gregg Allman, Robert Randolph, T-Bone Burnett, Me'shell Ndegeocello, Dr. John and many others. Tix for the show are $22 advance, $27.50 at the door. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers Future Stuff. Here's DBII in Chicago in November. If you are watching at work, skip ahead to ten seconds. The guy introducing them says a dirty word.

That'll do it. Have a great weekend! I'll leave you with this one.

Tony Jordan

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Late Night TV Pick: Josh Abbott Band

Alt-country/Americana/rock band Josh Abbott Band is on Conan tonight (11 PM, TBS). The band formed in Lubbock TX in 2007. Their last album, Front Row Seat, was a concept album, not something you usually see from country acts, about the rise and fall of a relationship. From 2011, here's "Oh Tonight" with the band getting a little help from Kacey Musgraves:

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Weekend Picks: Del McCoury, Nighthawks, No BS! Brass Band, Afro-Zen Allstars, Atkinsons, Instant Karma

This is a long weekend for some of you, so no excuse for not getting out and seeing some live music. Besides Martin Luther King Day, state workers also get a day off on Friday for Lee-Jackson Day, which is, of course, a celebration of Bruce Lee and Samuel L. Jackson.

Speaking of Friday, that's your first of three, count 'em, three chances to see Afro-Zen Allstars. They'll be celebrating the release of their first CD, "Greatest Hits", all weekend. Their long weekend starts at Garden Grove Brewing Company Friday evening from 8 - 11. Don't cost nothin' to get in.

You can catch them next at Plan 9 in Carytown on Saturday afternoon from 1 - 2:30 where they will perform in-store. Here's a little taste of their "World Jazz and Global Grooves":

Finally, they'll be opening for No BS! Brass Band's Ten Year Anniversary Party at The Broadberry Saturday night. This will also be a great chance to check out the new bathrooms at The Broadberry. I don't know about you, but I'm pretty excited about not having to fight through the crowd at the front of the stage when I gotta go. No BS is promising surprises and guests for the show. Doors open at 8, Afro-Zen Allstars go on at 9. $10 to get in. Let's go with an oldie but a goodie, here's No BS on NPR's Tiny Desk Concert in 2013:

Fan of the lads from Liverpool and like to late lunch? Head to Cary St. Cafe Saturday afternoon for Instant Karma, a Beatles and Lennon tribute band. They'll play from 2 - 6 and it's free to get in. Perhaps they'll play this one for the president elect.

Long running blues band The Nighthawks (feat. Rev. Billy C. Wirtz) are at The Tin Pan Saturday night. Doors open at 6, show starts at 8, no opener listed. Tix are $18 advance, $22 at the door. Here's the band last month in NYC:

Legendary bluegrass musician Del McCoury is at The Beacon Theatre in Hopewell Saturday. Doors open at 6:30, the show starts sometime after that with a guest TBA. Tix range from $30 - $100. Here's Del and the band ringing in the New Year at Bluegrass Underground in Cumberland Caverns.

The Atkinsons play the Americana music at Poe's Pub Saturday night. Mike Koehler will kick off the music at 9:30, with The Atkinsons on after. There may be a slight cover charge. Here they are talking about "Lyin' and Honesty":

That'll do it. I may see at Plan 9 Saturday for Afro-Zen Allstars, Instant Karma for lunch at Cary St. Cafe and then the Broadberry for No BS. Could be a fun music day. Here's another one for Trump and the hope for a pees-ful transition.

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Weekend Picks: Lettuce, Popa Chubby, Threesound, Clair Morgan, King Easy, The Machine, Life On Mars, Long Strange Night

It is sometimes hard to get motivated when various viscous fluids are coming out of your face and your throat feels like it's closing up. But we will push through this illness, at least for a few hours, to complete this week's blog. It helps that it is a relatively slow period for live music in town. But with the lack of national touring bands in the area, this is a great time to find your new favorite local band that you can follow and watch grow over the coming year, like a little baby bird that makes a lot of noise with guitars until they fly from the nurturing nest that is RVA.

And here's a local band making national year-end best of lists and playing every first Friday at The Camel this year. The band Clair Morgan will be joined by Smoke Break, Anousheh, and Lightfields this Friday. Doors open at 8, music starts at 9, tix are $6 advance, $8 day of show. This show will benefit the Virginia ACLU, who I suspect will be extra busy over the next 4 years. You know Clair Morgan is getting big because they teamed with Three Notch’d RVA Collab House to come out with their own beer called New Lions Blonde Stout. Check it out at Three Notch'd. It just came out today (1/5). Hopefully they'll make a new video soon, but until they do, we'll keep playing this one:

CANCELED DUE TO SNOW: If you are looking for some music in the afternoon on Saturday, classic rock/blues band Long Strange Night is at Cary St. Cafe from 1 - 6 PM and it don't cost nothin' to get in. Here they are playing an original called "Love My Baby":

TAPROOM IS OPEN BUT KING EASY WILL BE RESCHEDULED. Reggae band King Easy are at Castleburg Brewery & Taproom Saturday evening from 7 - 9. I caught King Easy when they opened up for Antero a few weeks ago at The Broadberry and was mighty impressed. This one is also FREE to get in. Here's a little peek at their rehearsal on my birthday last year:

SHOW IS POSTPONED. NEW DATE NOT ANNOUNCED YET. Blues guitarist Popa Chubby is at Capital Ale House Downtown Saturday night. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 and no opener is listed. Tix are $15 advance, $20 day of show. I saw Popa at The Tin Pan last year and it had been at least 20 years since I had last seen him. He's only improved with great guitar playing, a solid band and excellent rapport with the audience. It looks like the Tin Pan show put Richmond back on the map for the NYC based Chubby so we'll hopefully see him more frequently now. Popa's current album, The Catfish, is currently sitting at #12 on the Living Blues Radio Chart. Here's a full Popa Chubby show, not sure when it was filmed, though he looks pretty young here. Now a days, Popa sits while he plays because he is Chubby. But he still plays electric and still brings the jams.

POSTPONED UNTIL APRIL 16 DUE TO SNOW. Can't get enough of that Pink Floyd stuff? Check out The Machine at The National  Saturday night. Tix are $15 - 20 advance (you can get reserved balcony seats for this show) and $18 - 23 day of show. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 and there is no opener. Here they are this summer doing "Pigs on the Wing" and "Pigs (Three Different Ones)":

More tribute bands Saturday night with Life On Mars (Bowie) and Better Off Dead (Grateful Dead/Jerry Garcia) at The Camel. This is a special celebration for David Bowie's birthday. They'll be toasting at midnight to the Thin White Duke. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9, tix are $10. Here's Life On Mars doing "Stay":

Sunday at The National, get funky with Lettuce. Tix are $19.50 advance, $23 day of show, doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers Jaw Gems. Lettuce drummer Adam Deitch also played with Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings on a European tour in 2006 and he wrote this memorial to her when she passed away. Here's Lettuce at The Brooklyn Bowl a few days ago:

Monday at The Camel, there is a benefit for the Conservation Music whose mission is to foster a global culture of sustainability through locally created music and film. The show will feature Threesound, Gull, Philosophunk, and Worse Curses with special guests Mark Ingraham and Matthew Walton. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 and it's $7 to get in. Here's Threesound's latest video, "Better Places":

That'll do it. Happy New Year everyone and thanks for reading! I'll leave you with this Beastie Boys video with some guys you might recognize playing the Beastie Boys and lots of celebrity cameos.

Tony Jordan

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Late Night TV Pick: Janelle Monae

The dynamic, lovely and talented Janelle Monae is on The Late Late Show with James Corden tonight (12:37 AM, CBS). I've been listening to her 2010 album, "The Archandroid" quite a bit lately. Almost every song is a different genre and she does them all well. I hope she will play some music but she may just be interviewed as she is out promoting her role in the new movie "Hidden Figures", the true story of a team of African-American women mathematicians who helped NASA's first space missions. From "The Archandroid", this is "Cold War":