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.
If there’s a theme to this edition, it might be odd and/or funny names. But what all four acts really have in common is great songwriting and musicianship.
Venue: The Orange Peel
Date: Thursday, June 2, 9 p.m.
Door: $20 advance / $25 day of show
High-concept in the extreme, Buckethead is known for a few things. One, he wears a bucket (formerly KFC, lately blank or otherwise-adorned) on his head, along with a horror movie hockey mask. Two, he doesn’t do interviews, at least not of the conventional sort. Three, he is, shall we say, prolific. As of this writing, he’s released 264 studio albums. (No, that is not a typo.) Four — and most important of all — he’s a guitarist of some stunning technique and versatility. He can shred, to be sure, but he can also churn out some of the most soaring, subtle and beautiful melodies ever to emanate from an electric guitar. What will this show be like? Anybody’s guess. Go find out.
Venue: Tiger Mountain
Date: Thursday, May 12, 9 p.m.
Door: $8 advance / $10 day of show
From Charleston comes this country rock band named after a malady in Latin American countries that manifests as a panic attack. The group has gotten good critical notices, scored a spot at the prestigious SXSW Festival, and shared stages with other highly-regarded acts including Shovels & Rope and Band of Horses. Frontman Justin Osborne spent some time in Havana, Cuba; that experience informs his music all to the good. Susto played the Isis Restaurant & Music Hall not long ago, but the vibe of Tiger Mountain may be even better suited to the band’s music. Shaun Couture opens.
Artist: Cha Wa
Venue: Downtown After 5
Date: Friday, May 20, 5 p.m.
Not altogether unlike 101 Runners (who played the local Goombay Festival in Summer 2014) Cha Wa is from New Orleans and plays a kind of Mardi Gras Indian music. With a healthy dose of funk, the group features two leaders in Honey Banister (vocals and percussion) and drummer Joe Gelini. Several members of the group boast lineage that connects them to the forefathers of the Mardi Gras Indian movement. But what really matters is the way Cha Wa gets audiences to move. The outdoor setting of Downtown After 5 is tailor-made for what Cha Wa does; it’s all but impossible to imagine the band in an indoor and/or seated venue. Jeff Thompson Band opens.
Artist: Shantih Shantih
Venue: The Mothlight
Date: Friday, June 3, 9:30 p.m.
I look forward to the day when the term “female musician” is laid to rest, and we all recognize musicians as just that, irrespective of gender. Until that time, it’s still noteworthy to point out the existence of quality groups that just happen to be all-female. Atlanta-based Shantih Shantih is one of those, and the members’ sound owes as much to early ’60s “Brill Building” pop (that term reads better than “girl-group,” doesn’t it?) as to the Stones– and Yardbirds-influenced sounds of ’60s American garage rock. Fans of The Black Lips will want to know about this (arguably superior) foursome. Impossible Vacation and The Cannonball Jars are also on the bill.
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