This weekend on a shoestring

Friday, May 21
• Points for an appetizing name: Athens, Georgia jam band The Incredible Sandwich. They come to Pisgah Brewery (150 Eastside Dr., Black Mountain, 669-0190). 5 p.m.

• Stephaniesid (pictured) headlines the first Downtown After Five of the season. Americana artist Jennie Arnau opens. 5 p.m. on Lexington Ave., Asheville, near the I-240 overpass. Free.

• Local reggae band Chalwa, whose motto is “blaze and praize,” plays at the Highland Brewing (12 Old Charlotte Hwy., Asheville, 299-3370) weekly Friday night event. Free music; food from a rotating cast of vendors. 6 p.m., tips.

• Local act Michael Burgin & The Drinker’s Union (pictured) writes, “This is our last show for a while. We are taking a break to write new songs, work, work on the next record and such. It’s also a FREE SHOW and we’re playing with our talented friends, You Dirty Rats, so it should be a good time! Hope to see you all there!” 8 p.m. at New French Bar (12 Biltmore Ave., Asheville, 225-6445).

• Singer/sogwriter Valorie Miller performs at Well-Bred Bakery (26 N. Main St., Weaverville, 645-9300). 8 p.m. Free.

• Based, somehow, in Houston, Richmond and Brooklyn, indie-folk quartet Itchy Hearts all come together at Bobo Gallery (22 North Lexington Ave., Asheville, 254-3426) with local band-to-watch Israel Darling (pictured). 8 p.m.

• Drummer Isaac Wells, of bands like WiLSiN, has his own project: Kokopelli’s Cousin. He’ll play at The Back Room (2702 Greenville Hwy., Flat Rock, 697-6828). 9 p.m.

• Rock, funk, reggae, and hip-hop group Fish Out of Water (pictured) makes the trip from California to play two Asheville shows this week: First at The Garage at Biltmore (101 Fairview Rd., Asheville, 505-2663) on Thursday, May 20 and then at Mo Daddy’s (77 Biltmore Ave., Asheville, 258-1550) on Friday, May 21, where they’ll be joined by Boone’s Major Magick. According to press, “This will be their second national tour in nine months for the all original act out of California.  The three-piece has over 60 venues scheduled in a cross-country tour supporting their third release, The Dream.” 10 p.m.

• In case you’ve forgotten that Mellow Mushroom (50 Broadway St., Asheville, 236-9800) hosts music events, local funk outfit Discordian Society. 10 p.m.

Saturday, May 22
• This weekend brings the inaugural Rocky Broad River Tiki Tumbler Kayak Race. Yes, that’s a whole lot of words in that title, and for good reason. First, there are not one but three races: The advanced race starts at 9 a.m (registration at 8:30 a.m.), the “Anything Floats” race starts at 2 p.m. (register anytime before that) and the duck race (using one-person rubber “duckie” kayaks; not water fowl) starts at 4 p.m. (pay for the use of your duck prior to race day). Each race is $5 to enter and will take place on a 3/4 mile section of the lower Rocky Broad in Lake Lure, beginning at the put-in (Caulder Realty) and ending at Redneck Falls. Now for the tiki part. The event — which benefits the Lake Lure Youth Center — is hosted by the Geneva Riverside Tiki Bar (317 Memorial Hwy., Lake Lure, 625-4121). They’ll also host the after party with music, food and drinks.

• Local Brit-pop act The Cheeksters (pictured) take the stage at the 7th annual Montford Music & Arts Festival, which kicks off at 10 a.m. Head down Montford Ave in Asheville to the block between Cullowhee and Waneta Streets. Here’s the lineup: Embe Marimba Band at 11 a.m., Ira Bernstein & John Herrmann at noon, Vollie and the Lead-Foot Vipers at 1 p.m., Hurt Mountain Boys at 2 p.m., Pure Fiyah Reggae Band at 3 p.m., the Cheeksters at 4 p.m., WestSound at 5 p.m. and The Screaming Js at 6 p.m. Free.

• City Lights Bookstore (3 East Jackson St., Sylva, 586-9499) hosts a meeting of the American Girl Club. (It’s based on the popular doll and book series. So, if you didn’t already know that, of have a daughter/niece/sister/neighbor who knows that, you probably should steer clear.) 1 p.m.

• Seattle-based songwriter Ian McFeron sometimes has a full band and sometimes performs as a duo. As he’ll be doing at Filo (1155 Tunnel Rd., Asheville, 298-9777). First, a word about Filo: Yuuuuum. Another couple words: Greek pastries. Now, a word — is own, as a matter of fact — about McFeron (who plays with Alisa Milner): “This Spring, McFeron sets out on an ambitious, 16,000 mile tour of the continental United States where he will perform more than 70 shows in less than 90 days, all while functioning as his own, independent record label, booking agency, and management company.” 8 p.m., free.

• Connor Garvey has a photo of himself in a ‘70s-era pale-wash denim suit. He has one the coolest Myspace backgrounds ever. He’s from Bozeman, Montana, and if you like that thoughtful, rhythmic, singer/songwriter thing, he does that really well. His description: “Mix some Martin Sexton with Josh Ritter, throw a dash of Stevie Wonder, a pinch of The Weepies, and your getting close to the soulful, witty, and moving folk-rock songwriter performance of Connor Garvey.” Check him out at Firestorm Cafe (48 Commerce St., Asheville, 255-8115). 8 p.m.

• Members of Dashvara perform as part of the Tom Waits Tribute at Westville Pub (777 Haywood Rd., West Asheville, 225-9782). 9 p.m., $5.

• Celt rockers (“Official Celtic rock band of the Clan MacLean”) The Hooligans  put in an appearance at Tall Gary’s College Street Pub (4 College St., Asheville, 232-0809). 9 p.m.

• Hip-hop arists B-P-L strut their stuff at the Mo Daddy’s (77 Biltmore Ave., Asheville, 258-1550) Brown Bag Songwriter’s Finals. 9 p.m., $5. By the way, props to Mo Daddy’s for it’s fantastic new Web site.

• If you love bluegrass — especially in the authentic, gather ‘round the mic sense — Sanctum Sully is your band. If you like a modern take on mountain roots music, well, same story. They’ll be at Fred’s Parkside Pub & Grill (122 College St., Asheville, 281-0920). 10 p.m.

• More for your money: The Big City Bangers, Decoration Ghost and On the Take share a bill at Broadway’s (120 N. Lexington Ave., Asheville, 285-0400). Late, like 10 p.m. Probably later than that.


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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One thought on “This weekend on a shoestring

  1. jeff

    That Rocky Broad kayak race sounds like a lot of fun, but incredibly dangerous for anyone less than expert. American Whitewater ranks that section as class IV/V. Redneck Falls (AKA Walker Falls) is a proven killer with at least two sieves that make retrieving a body very difficult. And this is the finish line?

    There is at least one 5-foot boof in the middle of the section they’ve described as the race course. I could not imagine doing that in a ducky or “anything that floats.”

    Also the river level is at 1.58 feet on the bat cave guage right now ( And the minimum floatable level is considered to be 3.8 feet. (No one I know boats it at less than 4.1.)

    I think they’d be better off racing (scraping/knuckle-dragging) from the Tiki Bar down to the lake.

    Having said that, the Tiki Bar is one of my favorite hangouts in all of western NC. It’s right on the river with a swimming hole on one side of the bar and the swimming pool on the other side. Horse-shoes, fire pit… ah. .. Tiki Bar is AWESOME.

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