Twice monthly, my blog 30 Days Out spotlights upcoming music shows and events of note, shining a light into some less well-lit corners, where some fascinating artists schedule performances. I do my best to give ample advance notice so that you can adjust your budget and calendar in a way that lets you get to the show.
Twenty bucks total. That’s all it takes to enjoy all four of these headliners (plus some other acts on one of the bills). That’s a lot of music for your entertainment dollar. Two local acts, one from Charlotte and one national touring artist who rarely plays Asheville are the focus of this installment.
Artist: Marshall Crenshaw with The Bottle Rockets
Venue: Grey Eagle
Date: Sunday, March 8, 8:00 p.m.
Door: $15 advance/$18 day of show
Crenshaw is an under-appreciated musical Renaissance man. He got his pro start playing John Lennon in Beatlemania in the ’70s; his 1982 self-titled debut album is one of the best power-pop-meets-singer/songwriter albums of the era; he portrayed Buddy Holly in the 1987 film La Bamba. He wrote an excellent book called Hollywood Rock: A Guide to Rock ‘n’ Roll in the Movies. He earned a Golden Globe nomination for composing the title track for the 2007 comedy Walk Hard. He sat in as an auxiliary member of MC5 for some reunion shows. And he’s released a long string of critically-acclaimed studio albums (ten), live discs (five) and a recent EP series (five and counting). Sometimes onstage he plays solo acoustic; for this tour, Crenshaw’s backed by the high energy rock ‘n’ roll of The Bottle Rockets.
Venue: The Mothlight
Date: Saturday, Feb. 7, 8:30 p.m.
Compass Sky, the debut album from Asheville-based Worldline is the kind of music they rarely make any more. Worldline creates alluring melodies with that hint of melancholy you might find in a Pink Floyd record (or a Porcupine Tree CD). Brian Turner‘s synth lines don’t aim to dazzle as much as they help carry the song along, and Andrew Schatzberg‘s strong vocals bear the influence of most any great band of the ’70s you can think of, but they’re more classic (in a good way) than retro. Worldline are bubbling under, and they don’t do too many local gigs. Catch ’em while you can. Luxury Spirit and George Terry & The Zealots are also on the bill.
Artist: Jason Daniello and the Argonauts
Venue: Highland Brewing
Date: Friday, Feb. 20, 6:30 p.m.
Though they initially planned the date as a performance by Orgatroid (longtime friends Jason Daniello and Jeffrey Richards on analog synths, a sort of Kraftwerk meets Depeche Mode), when the duo decided that project wasn’t quite ready for the stage (but do check out their recordings), they decided instead to reanimate a long-dormant project called The Argonauts. No, this isn’t “classic rock,” not by a long stretch. It is an evening of music that you’ll recognize (for the most part) but that you haven’t heard bands play eleventy-billion times. For this show, Daniello (formerly of Broomstars) and Richards (Hazeldine, Vic Chesnutt) are joined by bassist Anthony Dorion (Silver Machine, Space Medicine), drummer Michael Rhodes (Blue Rags, Invisible III) and this writer on keyboards.
Venue: Jack of the Wood
Date: Monday, March 9, 9:00 p.m.
With a sound that recalls everything from Poco and Moby Grape to the more countrified moments on George Harrison‘s All Things Must Pass but still possessing a punk ethos, this Charlotte-based trio displays a wry sense of humor in their songs. Are they pop? Country? Rock? Americana? The easiest answer is “yes.” The sly Kinks reference of the rollicking “Where Have All the Bad Times Gone (To)” will bring a smile to listeners’ faces. The group played a Brevard brewery last May, but (as far as I know) this will be their first trip to Asheville.
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