Friday – Night on the Town
Happy Friday! What a L-O-N-G week! Holy Cow! Am very happy it’s FRIDAY! Having spent most of this week in Portland guitar browsing and clothes shopping and dining at too many fabulous “hole in the wall” restaurants, I’ve returned home to get my weekend fix of fine music.
Fortunately I’m in the mood for some kickass bluegrass.
Tonight at Sam Bond’s Garage, the “bluegrass ambassador” himself Dick Kimmel is performing. Touted as a ‘musicologist’ Kimmel plays a mandolin, or banjo much like the rest of breathe… effortlessly. Proclaimed “West Virginia Ambassador of Good Will” by the West Virginia Legislature in 1978; he earned the title for his “tireless promotion of the music of this state through performances, recordings, lectures, workshops, and coordination of bluegrass events.” This title was expanded to “The Ambassador of Bluegrass,” in a 1994 feature article for Bluegrass Unlimited, because of his varied involvements with bluegrass music on an international level.
Up close and personal is best to see this virtuoso and no better place than Sam Bond’s Garage. Spend the $5 at 9:30pm tonight and see why this man was inducted into America’s Old-Time Country and Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame in 2008 and into the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame in 2010.
For a different flavor and style of bluegrass, The Oak Street Speakeasy has on it’s stage The Harmed Brothers, who are promoting their latest release “All the Lies You Want to Hear.” With a unique blend of banjo, slide guitar and drums, Ray Vietti (guitar/vocalist), Alex Salcido (banjo/vocals/piano) and percussionist Adam Morehouse, create a pulsating melodic sound that makes your toe tap. No kidding. These boys got to perform at this year’s South By Southwest in Austin back in March and have recently returned from a 3 month road trip across the US. Their song “Kansas Wind” is such a percussion driven song that it makes you wish had a tambourine in hand to jam with the band.
The Harmed Brothers ominously sound a lot like Brent Best’s band, Slobberbone, in that the songs are engaging and really capture one’s ear. From the song “One Night” “I see your face across the room. Don’t know your name. I will soon” is a great line. Also on tonight’s bill are Honest Connie & 5 Finger Discount (think a young Loretta Lynn vocally with songs reminiscent of the storytelling Johnny Cash) and Soda. If you have a valid student ID, you get 15% off your tab.
Tonight would not be complete without stopping by Cornucopia to see the Wainwright Brothers perform with Tyler Fortier & The Girls of Seabell at 10pm. If I can tear myself away from Dick Kimmel after his first set, and slide by the Oak Street Speakeasy for The Harmed Brothers set, then Cornucopia it is! The song “Eye to Eye” sounds a bit like good time bluegrass with a bit of Dr. John thrown in for good measure. Dylan Macnab on banjo and vocals does a good job at creating a feel good vibe for the band.
Just might need to stop by Conways in Springfield before all of this however as it’s Ladies Night, which means $3 Long Islands, beginning at 9pm.
Tonight’s hit list has already been handed to the driver and I gotta sport all these new clothes somewhere … right? Come on out and join me!