Friday – Night on the Town
After the short work week there is plenty of music to see tonight. Think of tonight as a musical buffet offering everything from metal bands, to country outlaw punk and everything in between, including a thick slice of novelty songwriting for dessert!
First stop, however, is over at Goodfellas where the KNRQ Last Band Standing winner, The Eastman Band is performing. I’ve read the hoopla and heard the buzz and I’m ready to see why these boys won last month’s competition. This Springfield power trio of John Eastman, Jim Cuelar and Terry Brewer, while stylistically reminiscent of Metallica and even Pearl Jam create their own distinctive brand of metal, which is a perfect fit for their original songs like “Facebook Friend” and “Blood Suckin’ Bastards.” Well crafted songs are as memorable as a one’s first kiss and well, metal or not, I”m up for hearing some good songs tonight. No cover tonight with Happy Hour starting at 5pm and going till 8pm. Rumor has it one of their drink specials tonight just might be jello shots! Hooray!!
Next musical dish tonight is over at the Oak Street Speakeasy where not only are the is Low Men performing but so are The Whopner County Allstars. A cohesive group who are so much more than a typical ‘country rock’ band, but are a high energy with an infectious twang band, the Whopner County All Stars are a welcomed treat tonight. Think old style country (Loretta Lynn and Merle Haggard) meeting classic soul stylings of Wilson Pickett and Dusty Springfiled. Hope to score one of the button or stickers that the band gives out to all who attend their show. The band consists of Gregg Vollstedt on vocals, guitar, lap steel, Sara Scofield on vocals and kazoo, Matt Alpert on lead guitar, Ken Howe on drum and J.P. Scofield on bass and vocals. Their song “I’ll be with you Tonight” is my idea of a classic country song. This is big band with a BIG sound.
Poking my head in at Luckey’s I just have to hear the My American Myth set. Relatively new to the scene, just started performing as a band earlier this year, this band has some great hooks in their songs; both musical and lyrical. In songs like “The Big Heartbreak” the musical hook you can’t get out of your head (I’ve been trying!) and is well complimented with slow melodic verses and a loud grunge-like chorus. It will be terrific to hear this band in such an intimate room.
Last stop on tonight’s tear will be Sam Bond’s Garage to hear Portland’s Tom Heinl and see which “guests” show up to help promote his latest release With or Without Me. I got a $5 for the cover and know the show will be good. Heinl is a singer/songwriter who has the voice of someone like Tom T. Hall or Johnny Cash and the songwriting ability like no one else I’ve ever heard. Who else would write the songs “Peein in an Empty” or “Three Way”? In the song “Three Way,” a man asks his wife for an extra parter in bed and finds himself left out entirely! You know this stuff happens in real life and Heinl has captured the moment in song. Yes, it’s got an alt-country twang goin’ on, but OMG! It’s hilarious! Just like the other songs on this CD. — IHOP is a personal favorite -ed.
Tonight I pray that I don’t end up like the gal in photo for today’s column! I will see you out there!