This is how to do a weekend right. Pretty much every kind of musical genre is represented, from electronica and indie pop to country-punk and good ol’ soul. Stick to downtown Asheville or head for the Mountain State Fair — either way you can dance your booty off without coughing up more than five bucks.
Friday, Sept. 11
• The Drone Valley Music & Art Festival makes its way back around to downtown Asheville. Three days of music (the festivities begin on Thursday; check the Web site for info) include Friday shows at The Boiler Room (11 Grove St., Asheville, 505-1612) with Spy Satellite, Darien, The South French Broads, Where the Buffalo Roamed, The White Cascade and Goodbye, Titan. 8 p.m., $5.
• Hendersonville folk singer Amy Burritt (pictured below) performs at Vaso de Vino Wine Bar (75 Long Shoals Rd., Arden, 687-3838). 8 p.m., free.
• Catch Phuncle Sam at College Street Pub (4 College St., Asheville, 232-0809). 9:30 p.m., $3.
• Airiel Down (below) from Raleigh favors distressed denim, artful facial hair, driving percussion, slickly produced radio-ready pop lyrics and some unexpected instrumentation: didjeridoo, mandolin, violin and harmonica. The over all effect is both VH-1 cool and surprisingly fresh. The show is at Wild Wing Cafe (161 Biltmore Ave., Asheville, 253-3066). 10 p.m.
• Folk rockers Blue Jay Way round out the evening at The Root Bar (1410 Tunnel Rd., Asheville, 299-7597). 10 p.m., $3.
Saturday, Sept. 12
• The fantastically retro Space Heaters (pictured below) swing into the Grove Corner Farmer’s Market (next to Westville Pub on Haywood Rd., West Asheville) around 3 p.m. Free.
• Acoustic folk artist PJ Brunson plays a free show at Well-Bred Bakery (26 North Main Street, Weaverville, 645-9300) where, says Brunson, there are “eclairs as big as your head.” 7 p.m.
• Heading to the Mountain State Fair (WNC Ag Center, Fletcher, 687-1414)? Check out Americana trio AppalachiaSong. The band goes on at 8 p.m.; show is free with admission ticket ($5 at the gate for adults).
• If cover tunes (“Dock of the Bay,” Prince’s “Kiss”) are your guilty pleasure, get your fix at Magnolia’s (26 Walnut St., Asheville, 251-5211) where Crocodile Smile (below) performs an 8 p.m. set.
• Country-ish punk-ish rockers Wooden Toothe (pictured below) play energetic, tightly-crafted songs. Even better, they play for free at Pisgah Brewing Company (150 Eastside Dr., Black Mountain, 669-2491). 8 p.m.
• Like a lot of bang for your buck? Memphis-based Two Way Radio packs eight members into its show. That’s a lot of musicians for a mere $5. And they have quirky-cute songs like “Make Out With Me.” The group joins Asheville’s Empty Slate and Waynesville’s Five Pound Fire at The Rocket Club (405 Haywood Rd., West Asheville, 505-2494). 8 p.m.
• The Funky 4 Corners (pictured) bring their Freddie King-meets-Van Morrison brand of bluesy soul to Tressa’s (28 Broadway St., Asheville, 254-7072). 10 p.m.
—Alli Marshall, A&E reporter