This weekend on a shoestring

It’s still winter. This is still a recession. And, even if you’ve only got five bucks, there’s still more music happening on a given weekend in Asheville then you could possibly take in—even with the help of a serious caffeine buzz. This week’s roundup covers the bargain-priced shows around town (and farther afield) as well as turning up some under-the-radar offerings.

Casey Williams (pictured) writes the kind of songs that threaten the Train and Edwin McCain monopoly on soft-rock love songs (like you don’t know all the words to “Drops of Jupiter”)—he’ll be performing his smoothly-addictive tunes this weekend at Fred’s Speakeasy. Natalie Joy brings quirky folk from Philly to a benefit, held at Downtown Books & News. And that’s just the tip of the musical iceberg.

Friday, Feb. 6
• Guitarist Joe Hallock of Americana band Southern Exposure (with the motto “Renewable Music Thru Acoustic Energy”) plays Picnic’s (371 Merrimon Ave, Asheville) at 6 p.m. The show is free; spend your money on pie.
• Rockers Wooden Toothe play a free happy hour show at Pisgah Brewery (150 Eastside Drive, Black Mountain). 6:30 p.m.
• Cabo Verde heats up Zambra (85 Walnut Street, Asheville) with Latin-favored world groove, starting at 8 p.m. Free.
• The Orange Peel (101 Biltmore Ave., Asheville) hosts a local showcase with Wilsin, The Cashmere Blackout and Peace Jones. The all ages show starts at 9 p.m., $5 gets you in the door.
• King Tut brings electronica to the Rocket Club (401 Haywood Rd., West Asheville). Vertigo Jazz Project, Eymarel, and East Coast Dirt also play the 9 p.m. show. $5.
• Ol’Hoopty stops by Mo Daddy’s (77-B Biltmore Ave., Asheville) at 9:30. Cover is $5.
• Acoustic bluegrass artists Brittany Reilly and Billy Gilmore (whose Myspace quote is, charmingly, “Let’s pick, bitches!”) perform for free at Tolliver’s Crossing (773 Haywood Rd., Asheville). 10 p.m.
• Post-punk performer Meghan Sara Mulhern (a.k.a., apparently, Megatronic “Shorty Luv” Mulhearn) takes the stage with her band, Quetzalcoatl, at the Boiler Room (11 Grove St., Asheville). 10 p.m., $3.
• Rounding out the evening 10:30 p.m., Buffalo (from West Asheville, not upstate New York) introduces Fred’s Speakeasy (122 College St., Asheville) to “rowdy Americana.” Cover is $3.

Saturday, Feb. 7
• Richie Valentine plays Catawba Vale Cafe (32 East Main Street, Old Fort) at high noon. The show is free. It’s worth noting that, as his name suggests, he’s a week early… Valentine will be playing the same place at the same time on his namesake holiday. Sweet.
• Bearded troubadour Bob Burnett takes the 6 p.m. slot at the French Broad Brewery (101 Fairview Rd., Asheville). Free (as are the beer-accompanying pretzels).
• Philadelphia-based minimalist folkie Natalie Joy (actually the brainchild and one-man-band of Elliot Harvey) plays a by-donation gig at Downtown Books & News (67 North Lexington Avenue, Asheville) with Alexandria of Tooth Ache and Chelsea of Dirty Fist. The 8 p.m. concert is a benefit for No More Deaths.
• Durham’s Shoot First, who professes to “Committing robberies and inducing comas” will drop by Warren Wilson College’s Sage Cafe (701 Warren Wilson Rd., Swanannoa) for a free 8 p.m. show.
• At 9 p.m., The Honeycutters get busy at the Westville Pub (777 Haywood Rd., West Asheville). $5 at the door.
• Blues rockers Brother Fatback play the College Street Grill (4 College St, Asheville) at 9:30 p.m. Free.
• Singer/songwriter Casey Williams (pictured) brings his impressively polished radio-ready light-rock to Fred’s Speakeasy (122 College St., Asheville) at 10 p.m. It might be worth the $5 simply to witness Fred’s regular crowd react to Williams. Just a hunch, but seeing this guy in a small bar for a small cover probably won’t be possible for long.

—Alli Marshall, A&E reporter

About Alli Marshall
Alli Marshall is the arts section editor at Mountain Xpress. She's lived in Asheville for more than 20 years and loves live music, visual art, fiction and friendly dogs. Alli is the winner of the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the author of the novel "How to Talk to Rockstars," published by Logosophia Books. Follow me @alli_marshall

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