The Infamous Stringdusters
@Baltimore Soundstage | view more info »
Oct
5

The Infamous Stringdusters



Wednesday Oct 5|doors 7:00 pm|all ages
Baltimore Soundstage|get directions »
124 Market Place
Baltimore, MD|p: (410) 244-0057


The Infamous Stringdusters

official band site »

After finally being in the same room for the first time in six months, the Infamous Stringdusters seized the moment for their revealing new album, Toward the Fray. Inspired by self-reflection and a strong sense of solidarity, the project documents the Grammy Award-winning group’s remarkable growth as instrumentalists as well as songwriters. Released on their own label, Americana Vibes, the collection also firmly establishes the band’s stature on the modern acoustic music landscape, where they’ve built a solid and enduring fan base among traditional and progressive audiences alike.

The five band members – Travis Book (bass), Andy Falco (guitar), Jeremy Garrett (fiddle), Andy Hall (Dobro), and Chris Pandolfi (banjo) -- wrote the songs on Toward the Fray separately, sending simple phone demos to each other during lockdown. Fueled by friendship and a mastery of their instruments, the 13-track collection feels live, but not necessarily loose, due to a synergy that’s developed over the last 16 years of playing sheds, clubs, and festival stages across the country.

“With all of our records, we always go into the studio to capture the live energy of our band, so I feel like we were all comfortable just plugging right in and getting started,” Pandolfi says. “All five of us have arrived at this point in our careers where we all produce – we produce our own music and some of us produce for others. We knew we could get it done with all that collective intel and know-how. One of the awesome things about being in this band is that everybody is always working on their instrumental game. When we show up for a new tour or a new album, we all get a chance to dig even a little deeper -- and you can hear that part of it. That's always been part of our mantra.”

Toward the Fray begins with a somber perspective in songs like “Hard Line” and “I’m Not Alone,” even as the arrangements tap into the ambitious, enthusiastic musicianship the band is known for. The point of view in “I Didn’t Know” feels especially personal for Garrett.

“For me, it was a heavy time, with the pandemic slowing everything down, but what affected me the most was the death of George Floyd,” he says. “I can't say what an impact that had on me personally, being an average American white guy going along through life, not necessarily fully understanding what the other side of the fence was. I took a deep look at myself because of that story. I got inside of my head and wanted to write about it. Several songs on this record come from that vantage point, trying to put more thought into, how can we bridge this gap that has happened? ‘I Didn’t Know’ is about that. I didn’t know we had to pay attention to these things. It was a wake-up call for me.”

Continuing the conversation, Book adds, “All five of us took that opportunity for our consciousness to evolve, and we took the responsibility seriously. That’s what I hear when I listen to this record. The songs are very honest and real, but what other option do we have? There’s a responsibility as citizens of this country and as citizens of earth, for all the reasons – ecological and cultural -- to lean in and to turn toward the battle. Everybody brought a lot of conviction with their tunes. Everybody came with a clear idea of what their statement was going to be. I think because of the situation we were all in, a harmonious and collective sound came out of that.”

The title track of Toward the Fray finds the narrator making a decision to get involved, rather than just comment on the sidelines. It’s a powerful image – and one that required an attention-grabbing visual. Of the cover art depicting a young girl standing firm among the wreckage, Hall says, “When we decided on the album title, I imagined the fray being a city that was on fire or in turmoil. And in juxtaposition of all that destruction happening, there’s a child. That's what was happening in the world at the time. There were little kids seeing these protests and all this strife. No one is safe from what's going on, as far as experiencing some level of it. One thing that I like about the artwork is that the child has a strength to her, especially the way she’s looking right into the camera. She’s got to wear a gas mask and she looks ready to enter into the fray, like, ‘All right, I’ve got to face this.’”

Toward the Fray is also the first Infamous Stringdusters album with drums, with the band deciding that the songs were calling out for it. The band explores other creative directions, too, ranging from the persistent march of “Revolution,” to the comforts of home in “Pearl of Carolina.” Meanwhile, “Spirits Wild” will be relatable to those who can’t help but answer the call of the road. “When Will I Ride Again,” a sequel to “Tragic Life” from their first album, is cinematic but also emblematic of their own questions about picking up where they left off. “How Do You Know” and “Through the Floor” are among the band’s most vulnerable compositions in a catalog of exceptional material.

“To me, the theme of Toward the Fray is about dealing with your problems head on, rather than running away from them,” Falco says. “One of the things that I’m really proud of is that this record is true to all of us. It’s a genuine record because it really is about everything that we were all going through. We’re talking about the pandemic and all of the chaos, but we’re talking about love and other things, too. We were able to reflect and dive deep and look inward during all of this. I hope people who hear these songs will feel like they’re not alone. That’s what we always hope that people can relate to in our songs -- that we’re all in it together.”


 
Brother Ali
Mally | DJ Last Word | @Pearl Street Warehouse | view more info »
Oct
6

Brother Ali

Mally
DJ Last Word

Thursday Oct 6|doors 7:00 pm|21+
Pearl Street Warehouse|get directions »
33 Pearl Street
Washington DC|p: (202) 380-9620


Brother Ali

official band site »

Brother Ali is a respected Hip Hop artist, speaker, and community leader. His two-decade resume includes eight critically-acclaimed albums, mentorships with iconic Hip Hop legends Chuck D and Rakim, and performances on late night shows with Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien.

His provocative and uplifting brand of Hip Hop has earned him coveted press features like Rolling Stone’s 40th anniversary edition and Source Magazine’s “Hip Hop Quotables”, while his outspoken social justice message has landed him on government watch lists. He’s also lectured at universities from Princeton to Stanford and delivered the keynote address at the Nobel Peace Prize Forum.

When he’s not rocking the mic at Coachella or being arrested for civil disobedience in support of marginalized communities, Brother Ali travels the world learning and teaching Islamic Spirituality under some of today’s most renowned teachers. In addition to leading worship services and classes, he co-founded The Gemali Project, an organization that helps Muslim converts and spiritual seekers access the beauty of the Islamic tradition. Brother Ali recently launched The Travelers Podcast from his new home in Istanbul, exploring life’s journey with cultural, spiritual, and thought leaders from across the globe.


Mally

DJ Last Word

 
North Mississippi Allstars
@The Hamilton | view more info »
Oct
8

North Mississippi Allstars



Saturday Oct 8|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Hamilton|get directions »
600 14th Street NW
Washington DC|p: (202) 787-1000


North Mississippi Allstars

official band site »

Nothing runs deeper than family ties. Brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, sons, and daughters understand one another at the purest level. When families rally around music, they speak this oft-unspoken bond aloud and into existence. After 25 years, twelve albums, four GRAMMY® Award nominations, and sold out shows everywhere, North Mississippi Allstars open up their world once again on their thirteenth album, Set Sail [New West Records], welcoming other family (by blood and by the road) into the fold. As legend has it, Luther and Cody Dickinson started the band in 1996 as a loose collective of like-minded second-generation musicians who shared a local repertoire and regional style. Over the years, the lineup shifted by design, and each subsequent record offered up a different combination of collaborators. This time around, they mined the talents of Jesse Williams on bass and Lamar Williams, JR. on vocals. During the Allman Betts Band Family Revival, the Dickinsons first linked up with Lamar, son of the Allman Brothers bassist Lamar Williams, Sr., becoming fast friends and collaborators and eventually paving the way for Set Sail.

“The chemistry we have with this lineup is powerful,” observes Luther. “We are all second-generation musicians and share a telepathic, relaxed ease about creating and performing. I believe music is a form of communion with our loved ones and conjuring this vibe with members of musical families can be inspirational. Lamar and I are like-minded. I’ve never had the pleasure of working with a singing partner like Lamar. He has a true-blue quality in his musicality that will pull you in and break your heart. At the same time, Jesse grew up playing music with his brothers and his father—as did we. He plays like a sibling. We recorded the album fresh off the road and captured the energy we had worked up with him. I’m drawn to musical families, regardless of style. Playing with second- or third-generation players allows us an easy unspoken musical dialog. It’s not a big thing; it’s just what we do. We never had to figure out what it means and takes to be a musician. We all inherently know.”

They picked up this wisdom by osmosis. As sons of legendary producer and musician Jim Dickinson, Luther and Cody have been producing records themselves since they were teenagers. Separately, the brothers have produced albums by Samantha Fish, R.L. Boyce, Lucero, Amy Lavere, the Birds of Chicago, Ian Segal, and more. Luther produced two records from Otha Turner, including Everybody Hollerin’ Goat, which was named one of the ten most important blues albums of the nineties. Luther and Cody co-produce North Mississippi Allstars records as the “Dickinson Brothers.”

“We learned an enormous amount from our father,” Luther says, “Cody and I made mistakes, but we’ve always believed in ourselves, and we had to learn for ourselves. Rock ‘n’ roll is self-taught. Each generation has to reinvent itself and shed the skin of the elders. On Set Sail, we feel as if we’ve once again ‘broken the code,’ and know what we want and how to get it.” Following 2019’s Up and Rolling, which received a GRAMMY® Award nod in the category of “Best Contemporary Blues Album,” Set Sail continues the band’s tradition of creating roots music that displays remarkable variety. Luther and Cody Dickinson dig in with the production and different guitar tones; the record sizzles with hard yet understated groove, grown folk music. Luther’s wide-ranging guitar style features jazz riffs, psychedelic sounds, and soulful slide. Drummer and multi-instrumentalist Cody draws on roots music, rock, jazz, rap, and other styles to create rhythms that propel the band’s sounds and move it forward. Their two aesthetics combine to create the band’s unique style, “Primitive Modernism,” melding the new and the old, traditional, and futuristic, crafted lyrics and improvisational music. Speaking of, the first single and title track “Set Sail Part I” [feat. Lamar Williams, JR.] rides a riff right out of the Southern Delta into the embrace of a horn section as the vocal interplay simmers on the line, “The water may rise again, but we shall set sail.”

“‘Set Sail’ really set the tone,” Cody goes on. “It could be taken literally or figuratively. Philosophically, it’s about the way the waters literally do rise. We’re talking about climate change in a literal sense, but it’s also symbolic in a social sense. It won’t be the first time.”

“See The Moon” [feat. Lamar Williams, Jr. & Sharisse Norman] hinges on a head-nodding bass line as Sharisse’s harmonies uplift a downright spellbinding performance from Lamar underlined by Luther’s unpredictable guitar phrasing. The most familial moments on the record happen when Luther’s daughters Lucia and Isla sing together on “Authentic” and “Didn’t We Have A Time,” marking a full circle moment in poetic fashion. Delicate instrumentation wraps around plaintive and powerful lyrics laced with nostalgia on the lullaby-style chorus. “It’s one of my favorite songs,” smiles Cody, who has recently become a father himself. “Hearing my nieces on it was a high point. It was really meaningful, deep, and beautifully sad, but also hopeful.”

Strings and horns give way to the smoky blues of “Never Want To Be Kissed” [feat. William Bell], illuminating yet another side of the sound. Luther notes, “Most of these songs have been floating around in my lyric books, waiting for their time to come. ‘Rabbit Foot’ and ‘Outside’ were inspired by conversations I remember having with Otha Turner and R.L. Burnside. We leaned into our other greatest influences: folk, soul, and psychedelic rock, but everything we play feels like North Mississippi. The recording also benefited from a new creative process I learned from a book, Q on Producing, that Cody sent me. I read about Quincy Jones’s philosophy of never recording a vocalist reading a lyric sheet. Up and Rolling was recorded with the band in the room. The genesis of Set Sail was the nylon string guitar and the vocals, and letting the memorized lyrics shape the song structure or lack thereof. This led to a whole new phonetics-based editing process that I’d never used before. Some of the lyrics were improvised and created on the mic, capturing the moment of creation.” Building the songs from the guitar and BPM on Set Sail enabled Luther and Cody to experiment with their drum and guitar sounds in a leisurely way they hadn’t afforded themselves since their debut album, Shake Hands with Shorty (1999). In the studio, Cody mixed the songs again and again, working tirelessly but never losing perspective. Cody’s grooves and Luther’s songwriting furnish the album’s foundations.

Luther admits, “Recently, I had my mind blown by Rick Rubin saying that fitting lyrics into the puzzle of structure can compromise the message. Indeed, rules are made to be broken. I’m glad these songs came to fruition at this time because I was able to express my stance on life and love. The fear of having my children grown up and asking me why I didn’t speak up for what I believed in has driven me and helped mature my songwriting and solidify my stance. Having kids made me get my story straight.”

The Dickinson brothers have recorded and toured with Mavis Staples, Charlie Musslewhite, John Hiatt, Robert Plant and Patty Griffin, G Love, Jon Spencer, the Tedeschi Trucks Band, Los Lobos, and the Black Crowes. Meanwhile, their seminal debut, Shake hands with Shorty (2000), earned the band the first of four GRAMMY® nominations, and changed the Dickinson brothers’ lives forever.

Luther adds, “Quincy says, ‘Music gives back what you put into it.’ We have dedicated our lives to music, and it’s given us a fantastic journey that’s still only beginning. In 1997, R.L. Burnside hired me and took me on the road. R.L., Kenny Brown, and Cedric Burnside taught me how to tour nationally after years of touring locally. The Shake Hands with Shorty tour in 2000 took Cody and I around the world and changed our lives. We never really slowed down.”

They forge ahead always as a family, first and foremost. “North Mississippi Allstars means family,” Cody concludes. “I get the joy of working with my brother. Our families keep growing too. There’s a sense of history. The older I get, the more I realize how important it is to record this music, so younger kids can hear it. I just want to make sure we pass it on. It’s a huge honor to be a part of this tradition.”


 
Perpetual Groove
@Baltimore Soundstage | view more info »
Oct
12

Perpetual Groove



Wednesday Oct 12|doors 8:00 pm|all ages
Baltimore Soundstage|get directions »
124 Market Place
Baltimore, MD|p: (410) 244-0057


Perpetual Groove

official band site »

Based in Athens, GA, Perpetual Groove is a long time well established touring act with an enthusiastic fan base and international critical acclaim. Dubbed PGroove by their fans, their music has been best described as anthemic trance arena rock. Their large catalog of original music offers something for everyone. The addition of an intense, retina burning, intelligent light show creates an atmosphere unlike any other, assuring fans they’ll get a highly polished, yet different show each night. With the recent addition of drummer Darren Stanley (Col.Bruce Hampton, Jimmy Herring The 5 of 7, Larkin Poe, Oz Noy, Peter Rowan) Perpetual Groove has positioned themselves to enter an entirely new era with a fresh perspective and sound. Almost 20 years into their career, Perpetual Groove continues to showcase the evolution of their cultivated music and performances. This is a band that is fully realized and ready to bring their sound, storytelling, and live experience to the masses.


 
Cris Jacobs Band
Caleb Stine | @The Recher | view more info »
Oct
21

Cris Jacobs Band

Caleb Stine


Friday Oct 21|doors 7:00 pm|all ages
The Recher|get directions »
512 York Road
Towson, MD|p: (410) 337-7178


Cris Jacobs Band

official band site »

When Cris Jacobs began dreaming about a follow-up to his critically acclaimed 2016 album Dust to Gold, he realized early on he'd have to do things differently this time around. His life had changed drastically since writing those songs: he'd toured extensively and attracted a legion of new, devoted fans; he'd come off the road into a world, with its divisive rhetoric and troubling headlines, he no longer recognized; and, most importantly, he'd gotten married and had his first child. Things had changed, and Jacobs had, too.

Color Where You Are is the work of an artist at an exciting new stage in his life and career, ready to use his talents to share a little beauty with the loved ones and fans who have already given so much to him. The title nods to Jacobs' experience writing the album, which, as he puts it, he had to do "between tours, coming home, changing diapers, fixing things around the house.... You name it." He no longer had the luxury of waiting for inspiration to strike, so he colored where he was.

"It was a new discipline for me and a new level of focus that I think brought out the best work," he explains. "I feel like I grew up a little bit. There are people in my life who I truly care about and things in the world I feel deeply about. That really pushed me in a stronger direction and forced me to feel things on an honest level."

Opening track "Painted Roads," with its soulful groove and clever arrangement, is the perfect encapsulation of just how far Jacobs has come since releasing Dust to Gold. Jacobs is self-assured and confident in his soulful, infectious vocal, while his lyrical craftsmanship shows Jacobs to be a thoughtful songwriter who continuously strives to grow and evolve.

"It's about choosing to live in the present, and see the everyday details of the world, rather than postponing living or paying attention in hopes of some distant prize or destination," Jacobs says of "Painted Roads." "We get so caught up in 'success' and ambition, and are so goal-oriented, that we sometimes lose sight of the beauty in the everyday. 'Color where you are' is the notion of creating beauty now, no matter the circumstance."

"Painted Roads" was one of the first songs Jacobs and the band (who co-produced the album together) recorded for Color Where You Are, with his band mates taking Jacobs' original Tom Petty-inspired arrangement and giving it an off-kilter, syncopated groove. For the first time, Jacobs wrote the bulk of the album's songs in the studio, camping out at Richmond's Montrose Studios to flesh out "germs and ideas that had been floating around" with band members Todd Herrington (bass), Dusty Ray Simmons (drums/percussion) and Jonathan Sloane (guitar).

"I booked the studio time and put a gun to my head and that sometimes works," Jacobs says. "In this case it did. It feels like a specific time period and specific vibe and emotional space that came through in all of these songs. It was a really organic process."

While life as a family man changed Jacobs' perspective (and schedule), current events also had a profound impact on Jacobs' songwriting, with commentary on social and political issues finding its way into tracks like "Afterglow" and "Under the Big Top." Color Where You Are is a hopeful affair, though, with Jacobs employing thoughtful criticism and messages of empowerment instead of wallowing or ruminating.

"The political climate is causing a different sort of energy and angst in me that’s never been there before," he explains. "It’s not a political album by any means, but those forces out there certainly dictated a lot of the writing on this record."

On "Afterglow," Jacobs searches for optimism and healing in trying times. His emotional vocal is buoyed by a passionate, swelling performance from the band, making the track one of Color Where You Are's most poignant moments. "It's about the hope that after the storm we are currently trying to survive in, we will see true light like never before," Jacobs says. "That the constant threats to our foundations will cause us to examine and strengthen them, and come out the other side with stronger hearts and clearer vision. 'There will come horses, there will come voices' -- that we will be forced to show our true hand like never before because of our dire need to defend it."

Elsewhere, on "Under the Big Top," Jacobs channels swampy, gritty rock influences to shine a light on narrow-mindedness and lazy thinking. Crunchy riffs and a fat bass groove make the track, despite its heady message, one of the album's many songs you can't help but move to.

"'Under the Big Top' is commentary on society’s evolution into gullible, easily distracted, lazy-mindedness," Jacobs says. “'Pretty lights junkie like a moth to candle,' always distracted by the brightest, loudest, biggest, rather than remembering how to seek for ourselves and find truth and love. We instead over-consume and are given every opportunity to do so. What we end up with is a circus of sorts, with tricksters and hucksters and loud mouths with no real value taking up all of our attention and ruling us, because we are too easily manipulated."

Grooves abound on Color Where You Are, as on standout track "Rooster Coop," which finds Jacobs and the band sniffing around the henhouse over greasy slide guitar, a deep, deep pocket and a truly funky bass line. "All I knew was that I wanted to write a song that merged country and funk," Jacobs says of "Roostr Coop." "We started out with the main groove of the tune and the first line that popped into my head was, 'There’s something funky in the barnyard.' So naturally, I wrote a song about a scandalous love tryst amongst farm animals."

Spanning rock, folk, soul and funk and drawing from inspiration that runs the gamut from the henhouse to the White House, Color Where You Are is a kaleidoscopic portrait of Cris Jacobs as a songwriter, musician and bandleader. It's the work of a devoted father and an empathetic member of the human race. More than that, it's a reminder that there's beauty to be found everywhere, if you just take a moment to color where you are.

"What am I trying to do with my music?" Jacobs muses. ? "The simple answer is this: I’m trying to connect with people. To express real-life human emotions and make people feel things. To connect my love of music with my love of writing and conjure up all of the joy and emotions that those things bring to me. To hopefully have people walk away feeling lighter or happier or more inspired to go do something after listening... I want to create a body of work that my family will be proud of one day, and to show that I had compassion to the human condition and wasn’t just a self-indulgent show off."


Caleb Stine

official band site »

Caleb Stine is a singer, guitarist, songwriter, and visual artist. His songs seek to uncover the mysteries of our shared humanity that live just below the surface of everyday experiences. His music has drawn comparisons to Townes Van Zandt and Willie Nelson, but Caleb’s songs are uniquely his own. Flying just below the mainstream radar, Stine has self-released a dozen albums, opened shows for artists like Jason Isbell, Bombino, and Sam Bush, acted Off-Broadway, and drawn story-boards for John Waters, while dynamically keeping the live shows rolling for fifteen years, ‘Stine’s upfront personality seeking to make a personal connection with everyone in the venue’ (Americana UK) Catch a Caleb Stine performance and you’ll leave inspired.

 
Kitchen Dwellers & Daniel Donato
@Union Hall @ UNION Craft Brewing (Indoor) | view more info »
Oct
22

Kitchen Dwellers & Daniel Donato



Saturday Oct 22|doors 7:00 pm|21+
Union Hall @ UNION Craft Brewing (Indoor)|get directions »
1700 West 41st Street
Baltimore, MD


Kitchen Dwellers

official band site »

Among the many natural wonders in Montana, Wise River runs for about 30 miles through the Southwestern region of the state, cutting through the mountains and flowing into the Big Hole River. Beyond being a favorite spot for fly fishermen, it remains etched into the topography of the land itself. Two hours away in Bozeman, Kitchen Dwellers equally embody the spirit and soul of their home with a sonic palette as expansive as Montana’s vistas. The quartet—Shawn Swain [Mandolin], Torrin Daniels [banjo], Joe Funk [upright bass], and Max Davies [acoustic guitar]—twist bluegrass, folk, and rock through a kaleidoscope of homegrown stories, rich mythology, American west wanderlust, and psychedelic hues. After amassing 5 million-plus streams, selling out shows, and receiving acclaim from Huffington Post, Relix, American Songwriter, and more, the group brings audiences back to Big Sky Country on their third full-length album, Wise River, working with Cory Wong of Vulfpeck as producer.

“Since we weren’t on the road due to COVID-19, the music we wrote was different,” Max reveals. “It was more introspective. There were a lot of ties to Montana.” “For the first time, we were all home for 365 days in a row, which hasn’t happened in ten years,” adds Shawn. “We were thinking of the quieter lifestyle encapsulated in the area. That comes through.”

“In the past, our songs would touch on the physical aspects of the state or reference its history and nature,” says Torrin. “These songs are more introspective, because they come from the perspective of actually being in one place. The vibe is a little more serious—given the weirdness of the past year and the shit everyone has been dealing with. Our little corner of the world has always delt with hard winters, but the whole world felt it in 2020.”

At the same time, their music continues to resound beyond that little corner. They’ve captivated audiences at hallowed venues such as Red Rocks Amphitheatre and performed alongside everyone from Railroad Earth and Twiddle to The Infamous String Dusters in addition to playing festivals such as Northwest String Summit, WinterWonderGrass, and more. They’ve released two critically acclaimed albums—Ghost In The Bottle [2017] and Muir Maid [2019]—and a live record, Live from the Wilma [2021]. They broke up 2020 with an EP of Pink Floyd covers entitled Reheated, Vol. 2. It was heralded by a two-night livestream concert, Live From The Cabin, beamed out to audiences from the Bridger Mountains. Additionally, they appeared at the Live From Out There virtual festival and even took over a drive-in movie theater for an in-person gig in between regular writing sessions together throughout the year.

In order to bring the new tunes to life, they recruited Cory behind the board as producer. Holing up at Creation Studios in Minneapolis, they recorded Wise River in just four days.

“Cory brought a little more orchestration,” Shawn reveals. “He helped us really think differently and evolve the sound as a band.”

On the single and title track “Wise River,” banjo brushes up against acoustic guitar as visuals of a “lonely river town where the barfly knows you best,” “the ghosts of miners,” and a place “where the snow can fall like cannonballs and lonesome wind blows bitter.”

“The town of Wise River is basically a forgotten spot on the map,” Shawn says. “It used to be a thriving place with many prosperous mines, but now it’s practically dried up. There’s a hell of a lot of melancholy. In our mind, it symbolizes the overall feeling of being in slowed-down Montana life.”

Meanwhile, “Stand At Ease” gallops along on nimbly strummed banjo and bright piano towards a chanting chorus, “I can’t stand to see what you’ve done to be free.” “That one is based on the mental health issues in the music industry coming to light over the past couple of years,” Joe reveals. “It’s about losing a lot of our friends and idols.”

“Paradise Valley” surveys the landscape as the lyrics visit the remnants of underground bunkers once occupied by a doomsday cult in the north. The finale “Their Names Are The Trees” recants another true story of tragedy in the wilderness.

“A good friend of ours is a wildland firefighter,” Shawn goes on. “He was stationed out in Oregon on the Beachie Creek Fire, which destroyed maybe three towns and killed several people. One night, they were 15 miles back from the fire line. They wondered where the fire had moved in the wind, but it overtook their camp, the entire town they were stationed in, and wiped it out. Several people didn’t make it.”

In the end, Kitchen Dwellers share timeless American stories from the heart of one of its greatest treasures.

“When you listen to Wise River, I hope you hear some of the original qualities that made us who we are, but you also recognize aspects that are new and adventurous,” Max leaves off. “If you go to a studio with a whole new batch of songs, it should never be the same as the last time. I hope you hear what it sounds like when the four of us are at home and have the space to create something together. This album is really how we sound as a band.”


Daniel Donato

official band site »

When people first meet Daniel Donato, they’re not fully braced for this walking tornado of creative energy. “They think there’s something that tips the scale in ways they don’t understand,” says Donato about his over-the-top, slightly manic vibe. “But what actually tips the scale is the amount of thought and analysis I put into my work and art, all of which is taken from the lessons of my life.”

Donato, a 25-year-old Nashville native, has distilled those life lessons into his debut album, A Young Man’s Country, his proper introduction to the general musical audience. Recorded at Nashville’s Sound Emporium in a mere two days and produced by guitar-ace Robben Ford, the record weaves outlaw country, Grateful Dead-style Americana, and first-rate songwriting into a singular form Donato calls “21st-century cosmic country.”

It might surprise some that the Telecaster-wielding wunderkind, who at 16 became the youngest musician to regularly play the iconic honky tonk Robert’s Western World while gigging with the Don Kelley Band, began his musical journey in a purely millennial fashion. Before he ever picked up a guitar, he discovered he had an aptitude for music via the video game Guitar Hero. At the time, he didn’t feel compelled to try his hand at the real thing until one day, about the age of 12, he heard the electric perfection of Guns ‘N’ Roses’ “Paradise City” blast from a set of speakers and his world was changed forever.

“It was the first time I ever had a vision for my life,” says Donato, who was partly drawn to music because he sucked royally at skateboarding. “I then took one of my dad’s old guitars . . . and I literally fell in love with it.” From then on, Donato lived and breathed music, practicing his chops around the clock. He’d play before school, during his lunch break, and in the evenings at home, sometimes falling asleep with the six-string in his hands.

It wasn’t long before he was busking on lower Broadway in Nashville, playing eight hours a day on weekends for tips. It was after one of those day’s sessions that he got a wild hair and snuck into Robert’s on a night when house act the Don Kelley Band was playing and his wig-dome was blown. “It was the first time I ever saw a band that was that good up close,” Donato said. “So I’m literally watching them play and I’m crying. I decided right then that I wanted to be the best guitar player in the world.”

Donato continued busking outside arenas before John Mayer and Phish concerts and on the streets of Nashville and it was then, while playing on Broadway, that he’d give Don Kelley his business card every Saturday night, hoping for a chance to audition. One day, while still a junior in high school, he got the call to come play. Donato was more than ready, and he delivered the goods in spades. He was so good, in fact, that he became a regular member of the band, performing four nights a week for more than 450 shows with the group.

Playing nightly with the Don Kelley Band was a formidable education for the young musician. Jamming regularly with Nashville’s most seasoned players, stalwart pickers who may have played in Buck Owens’ band, or Dolly Parton’s, or Alan Jackson’s, expanded his musical vocabulary while honing his stage presence. Along the way he was soaking up stories of adventures on the road and learning about the ups and downs of the music business. In short, he was gaining priceless life lessons and a musical education from wells that run deep into the musical history of Nashville.

Around the time he turned 18, one of Donato’s high-school teachers, a serious music lover who had seen his student play at Robert’s, gave him a Grateful Dead box set. It was another eureka moment for the guitarist. His love for the Dead may have been ignited much earlier by virtue of the fact that his mother was a bona fide Deadhead who followed the group on tour when she was pregnant with the future guitarist, but it was that collection that changed the way he looked at music. “It gave me a tie to all of the classic country gold I’d been working down at the honky-tonks each weekend,” he said. “Grateful Dead and Merle Haggard had always lived in my heart, but now, the link was made, and I had a vision on how to keep it alive for this generation that I am coming from.”

During the days of his Robert’s residency, Donato continued to busk at various locales, even playing the Grand Ole Opry, and it is the sum of all these gigs, experiences any teenage musician would kill for, that inform the sounds on A Young Man’s Country.

“Ain’t Living Long Like This,” one of three covers on the album, is a song by Waylon Jennings, who was recording at the Sound Emporium the day Donato was born. “Angel From Montgomery,” a song Donato learned on the fly while busking for tourists, pays tribute to the late John Prine. Donato recorded his unique take on the tune before Prine’s death. The Grateful Dead’s “Fire On The Mountain” is tacked on to “Meet Me In Dallas,” a tune Donato wrote while on the road with Paul Cauthen. The other seven songs, all originals, showcase the promise of a young songwriter coming into his own, one of the highlights being “Luck of the Draw.”

The message of these songs contain the central tenet of Donato’s “Cosmic Country” ethos, which is about finding the courage to blaze your own path. As such, it is an ethos the artist extends beyond music into the channels of social media, where he’s built up a huge following of devoted “DD Heads,” as his fans call themselves. His podcast, “Daniel Donato’s Lost Highway,” brings together like-minded creatives to get at the heart of what makes artists tick, for which he’s interviewed Brothers Osborne, Brent Cobb, Orville Peck, and Garry Talent of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band.

Incubated to the sounds of the Dead, educated by some of Nashville’s finest players, and having more than 2,000 shows under his belt and a social media presence, Daniel Donato is indeed a millennial whirligig of creative fire. He’s been dabbling in professional music since the age of 14 and yet he’s just getting started. A Young Man’s Country is the portrait of a restless artist as a young man, one whose story is singular and is still in its exciting, early chapters -- and as this effort shows, the future is indeed cosmic.


 
Ghost Light
@The Hamilton | view more info »
Oct
23

Ghost Light



Sunday Oct 23|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Hamilton|get directions »
600 14th Street NW
Washington DC|p: (202) 787-1000


Ghost Light

official band site »

“The story is less the fallout as it is the recovery” says Tom Hamilton. “Sticking with it. Staying the course in the face of adversity, uncomfortable conversations or situations. The path to health and healing is often not the path of least resistance but the path of perseverance and doing the work.”

For their sophomore studio album, The Healing, the band succumbed to a chaotic and constant state of change and that is where their story in The Healing begins.

“Culturally, I find these are some interesting times when it comes to mental health, healing and traumas,” says Tom Hamilton. “It's ok to talk about now. Encouraged, even. Historically, not so much the case from when I was learning what it meant to grow and be an adult. This cultural shift is a welcome change in expectation.”

“The Covid times allowed me to have an emotional reckoning with myself, relationships, childhood, and my vocation. The bouts of depression. The crippling anxiety. Waking up every day and choosing the difficult realizations and the hard truths.”

The band assembled in Philadelphia at The Ballroom, a 2,500 square foot studio located in a century old, forgotten factory in the north part of town. “Recording this album was not an easy, straight forward process,” explains Mullen. “It was a lesson in patience to figure out the right feel of a song, which can always change take to take.”

“As producer, I was fixated on going for a different approach from the last album”, says Hamilton. “I wanted things to be pared down to the essentials of who we are and to let that speak for itself. The recordings we ended up with were live and had very little extras added (a tambourine or shaker here, an extra rhythm guitar or vocal harmony there), which kept the emotion and humanity of the sound front and center.”

Through both the songwriting and recording process the band began to discover some of their less traveled emotional roots. “I found a lot of freedom, and new parts of my soul, in writing these songs,” reflects Mullen. “Making an album this way helped me understand the true inner workings of each song as we strived for recording with intention, not perfection. In the end, the essence of each song felt just right with all of us. That was most important.”

“It's not fun realizing that you fucked up. It's not fun realizing that you've been hurt. It's not fun realizing that you're vulnerable. But it's all in this album. From the macro view of humanity, to the zoomed in micro view of specific events in the band's personal lives, and everywhere in between.”

Ghost Light was born out of Hamilton’s last band, American Babies. “Raina had joined during the making of the last album and we had met Holly during that tour, having her sit in on a few shows,” remembers Hamilton, “ultimately I needed a change and started putting together a new band in the spring of 2017.

“By late summer of 2017 I had the band, and full team assembled but one thing was missing. There was no music, yet.”

In the fall of 2017 Hamilton and Mullen wrote an album’s worth of new material with the aid of “a shit load of LSD.” We had 14 songs ready to introduce to our new band. The first time the five of us all played together was in December 2017 at Hamilton’s studio in Philadelphia. The chemistry was immediate and the rest is history.

The Healing follows Ghost Light’s debut album Best Kept Secrets (2019), followed by defining festival sets at Peach Music Fest in 2018 and 19 and Northwest String Summit in 2019. In 2020 Ghost Light played to a packed house at Denver’s legendary Ogden Theater before being forced to cancel touring plans due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


 
Brown Eyed Women
@Pearl Street Warehouse | view more info »
Oct
27

Brown Eyed Women



Thursday Oct 27|doors 7:00 pm|21+
Pearl Street Warehouse|get directions »
33 Pearl Street
Washington DC|p: (202) 380-9620


Brown Eyed Women

official band site »

An all-female tribute to the music of the Grateful Dead.

Brown Eyed Women is an ensemble of powerful female players from popular bands around the country, celebrating the music of the Grateful Dead with a unique spin.

Members hail from Massachusetts, New Jersey, Florida, New York, Georgia and Pennsylvania. Their high-caliber musicianship and shared love of the Dead drew them together. This band is decidedly different in a field brimming with tribute acts. BEW brings authentic jams and a soulful new approach to the familiar Grateful Dead catalog.


 
Too Many Zooz
Yam Yam | @Union Stage | view more info »
Oct
28

Too Many Zooz

Yam Yam


Friday Oct 28|doors 7:00 pm|all ages
Union Stage|get directions »
740 Water Street SW
Washington DC|p: (877) 987-6487


Too Many Zooz

official band site »

The curious thing about being a fan of brasshouse? You're pretty much talking about being into one solitary but extremely unforgettable band: the amusingly monikered Too Many Zooz.

The musical style was "branded" by drummer King of Sludge, who recognized that there was no worthy existing classification for the New York trio, whose other two members are the equally unclassifiable Leo P (saxophone) and Matt Doe (trumpet).

"Brasshouse is a high energy musical conversation," Matt insists. "Though I honestly don't think there is a good way to describe it in words. It's about many different feelings and sounds and emotions."

Or as KOS so decisively puts it, "I don't really care about what's happening in music -- I just make art that I enjoy making."

It's exactly this indifference to convention and trend that has garnered Too Many Zooz a fanbase that KOS describes as "wide-ranging and fanatical." One of those fans? In 2016, Beyonce asked them to perform with her at the Billboard Music Awards...and it's quite possible they got just as much attention as did she.

After two years, a gazillion live performances and four EPs, their debut album Subway Gawdz (an unsubtle reference to their birth in the underground stations of NYC), was released to enthusiastic acclaim in 2016. Its sound was truly like nothing else, with inescapable grooves that take in dub, soul, funk and ska, utterly exhilarating horn blasts that shoot right up your spine, and, of course, equal doses of fun and attitude.

And right now, TMZ are riding higher than ever, surely poised for the leap into genuinely widespread international recognition that was likley inevitable since they first set foot in an NYC subway station. Indeed, following a deal with Ministry of Sound, their single "Warriors" racked up major play on Radio One (if you think you haven't heard it, when you hear it, you'll quickly realize you already have), followed by high-profile remixes from the likes of Armand Van Helden and KDA.

Then, UK sensation Jess Glynne penned lyrics and added vocals to morph the song into "So Real (Warriors)," which has been generating massive buzz while climbing the European charts. In the meanwhile, a live video for "Car Alarm" has furtively racked up more than 500K views in one week.

But surely signaling their mainstream "arrival"? A Canadian KFC commercial featured the band and their songs -- so don't be surprised if listening to their music suddenly makes you hungry.

Though they've also been up to more serious matters. Leo, in fact, was asked to play at the BBC Proms Charles Mingus tribute at a sold-out Royal Albert Hall in August 2017 -- certainly no small honor.

Yet for all this, the forward plan for Too Many Zooz, is, as ever, constant touring. The reason is simple: it's their outrageous, electrifying live performances that consistently continue to add the numbers to their growing worldwide legion of fans. Autumn 2018 will take them coast to coast, from Seattle to Houston to Philadelphia, and across Europe, with stops in Krakow, Strasbourg and Marseille, amongst others.

"I don't think there's any recording that can do a live performance justice," reckons Matt. "You'll see people of all different colors, creeds, genders, ages, sexuality at our shows. I really can't find a constant between them...besides liking our music -- haha."

But for everything that's happened in the last couple of years, the trio aren't actually all that surprised by their success.

"I always knew we had something special," Leo enthuses. "Thousands of people everyday loved our music...and I knew it would just continue to spread."


Yam Yam

official band site »

YAM YAM formed in late 2015, coming together from playing in an assortment of local bands in central PA. The band is inspired by 1970s soul music, New Orleans roots of jazz music, and modern/vintage funk and jam music. YAM YAM features raw instruments and captures a high-energetic sound. YAM YAM is Mike Dempsey on keys, Jason Mescia on saxophone, Xander Moppin on bass, Tom Fuller on guitar, and Tyler Fuller on drums.

The band released its debut, self-titled album in late 2018 and upon its release, it charted on Billboard Jazz Albums section at No. 17. The band has opened for Lotus, Dopapod, and Keller Williams among others and has been featured in NepaScene, LiveForLiveMusic, TheBurg, and Burg in Focus.

The band is currently finishing up its second album, preparing for a release in 2020/2021.

 
Brown Eyed Women
@The 8x10 | view more info »
Oct
29

Brown Eyed Women



Saturday Oct 29|doors 7:00 pm|18+
The 8x10|get directions »
10 E. Cross St.
Baltimore, MD|p: (410) 625-2000


Brown Eyed Women

official band site »

An all-female tribute to the music of the Grateful Dead.

Brown Eyed Women is an ensemble of powerful female players from popular bands around the country, celebrating the music of the Grateful Dead with a unique spin.

Members hail from Massachusetts, New Jersey, Florida, New York, Georgia and Pennsylvania. Their high-caliber musicianship and shared love of the Dead drew them together. This band is decidedly different in a field brimming with tribute acts. BEW brings authentic jams and a soulful new approach to the familiar Grateful Dead catalog.


 
Andy Frasco & The UN
Little Stranger | @Union Stage | view more info »
Nov
2

Andy Frasco & The UN

Little Stranger


Wednesday Nov 2|doors 7:00 pm|all ages
Union Stage|get directions »
740 Water Street SW
Washington DC|p: (877) 987-6487


Andy Frasco & The UN

official band site »

For better or worse, Andy Frasco has been married to the music industry since before he could grow facial hair. At just sixteen, Frasco worked for labels like Drive-Thru Records and Capitol, booking nationwide tours for his pop-punk heroes and wheeling and dealing on calls he’d take on the sly during lunch. He’s been on road since he was 19 with his band Andy Frasco & the U.N., played over 250 shows per year for more than decade, lived on bad bar food, and slept in vans, and now, after more than a decade on the musical grind, he’s finally finding himself.

The culmination of those efforts is Wash, Rinse, Repeat, which drops April 8th via his own label, Fun Machine Records. “This was my chance to learn my craft and fall in love with songwriting again,” he says. “This is me. This is how I feel. I'm not trying to write songs for other people anymore. I'm just trying to write songs that help me. And hopefully through that, help others, too.”

Written across the country with members of Dashboard Confessional, 3oh!3, Doom Flamingo, AWOLnation, and more, the record is a portrait of Frasco as a musician — and a man. Dealing with everything from addiction (“Spill the Beans”) to breaking old romantic habits (“Grow Old”) to fighting through the bad days to find the good (“Puff Break (Believe That)”), Wash, Rinse, Repeat stands as Frasco’s most complete, mature effort yet. With Bonnaroo and touring on the horizon, Frasco is ready for people to stop thinking of him as a party-boy frontman with a yen for stage-diving and to listen to his words.


Little Stranger

official band site »

Born and raised in Philly, crash landed in Charleston, Kevin and John Shields are breaking into previously uncharted waters with their quirky indie hip-hop group, Little Stranger. Between John’s melodic singer-songwriter magnetism, Kevin’s in-your-face delivery, and an overall undeniable groove, this duo is sure to get any audience up and moving. Stylistically reminiscent of Gorillaz and Odelay-era Beck, Little Stranger delivers a fresh take on melodic hip-hop. Every track brings the uniqueness and strangeness that their name implies.

For the past few years, the duo has perfected their live performance by playing over 100 shows per year prior to the coronavirus shutdown. The group also puts a big focus on creating arresting visual experiences through their music videos, their own eccentric television program (LSTV), and in-house graphics. Between their out-of-the-box creative endeavors and an ever-increasing arsenal of new tunes, Little Stranger is poised to make 2022 another slam dunk.

 
Trampled By Turtles
Amigo The Devil | @The Anthem | view more info »
Nov
4

Trampled By Turtles

Amigo The Devil


Friday Nov 4|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Anthem|get directions »
901 WHARF ST SW, WASHINGTON, DC 20024|p: (202) 265-0930


Trampled By Turtles

official band site »

Trampled by Turtles are from Duluth, Minnesota, where frontman Dave Simonett initially formed the group as a side project in 2003. At the time, Simonett had lost most of his music gear, thanks to a group of enterprising car thieves who'd ransacked his vehicle while he played a show with his previous band. Left with nothing more than an acoustic guitar, he began piecing together a new band, this time taking inspiration from bluegrass, folk, and other genres that didn't rely on amplification. Simonett hadn't played any bluegrass music before, and he filled his lineup with other newcomers to the genre, including fiddler Ryan Young (who'd previously played drums in a speed metal act) and bassist Tim Saxhaug. Along with mandolinist Erik Berry and banjo player Dave Carroll, the group began carving out a fast, frenetic sound that owed as much to rock & roll as bluegrass.

Trampled by Turtles released their first record, Songs from a Ghost Town, in 2004. In a genre steeped in tradition, the album stood out for its contemporary sound, essentially bridging the gap between the bandmates' background in rock music and their new acoustic leanings. Blue Sky and the Devil (2005) and Trouble (2007) explored a similar sound, but it wasn't until 2008 and the band's fourth release, Duluth, that Trampled by Turtles received recognition by the bluegrass community. Duluth peaked at number eight on the Billboard bluegrass chart and paved the way for a number of festival appearances. When Palomino arrived in 2010, it was met with an even greater response, debuting at the top of the bluegrass chart and remaining in the Top Ten for more than a year. Two years later, their crossover appeal landed them at number 32 on the Billboard 200 pop charts upon the release of their sixth album, Stars and Satellites. In addition to major bluegrass and folk festivals, they began showing up at Coachella, ACL Fest, and Lollapalooza. The official concert album, Live at First Avenue, followed in 2013, recorded at Minnesota's most famous venue. A year later, the band returned with the darker-toned Wild Animals, which bettered its studio predecessor on the album charts, reaching number 29 on Billboard. Countless tours with bands like Lord Huron, Wilco, Caamp, Mt Joy and Deer Tick to name a few have followed. 2022 will see the release of the band’s latest body of work called Alpenglow which was produced by Jeff Tweedy of Wilco.


Amigo The Devil

official band site »

Danny Kiranos, the Austin-based songwriter behind the Amigo the Devil project, has somehow managed to meld the worlds (and fanbases) of traditional folk, country music, rock, and metal into one. The sonic experience is morbid, yet poetic and oddly romantic. His unique artistic perspective and ability to connect with audiences has allowed him to amass a dedicated, cult-like fan-base. Loaded with sing-alongs – and an unsuspecting dose of humor to make otherwise grim topics accessible for fans of every genre – the songs still remain deeply rooted in the tradition of story-telling…something that seems to be a lot less common nowadays. Attending an Amigo the Devil show is an experience: you become one with a wildly prophetic man, armed only with his entrancing voice and a banjo, and bear witness to an astounding performance that will stick with you for a long time.

A key figure in the U.S. ‘murder folk’ scene, Kiranos was initially influenced by the likes of Tom Waits, Nick Cave and Godspeed! You Black Emperor. Following a number of well-received single and EP releases, the debut album by Amigo the Devil ‘Everything Is Fine’ was produced by Ross Robinson, renowned for his work with major league hard rock/metal acts such as Korn, Slipknot, At The Drive In, and Glassjaw. The album also features drummer Brad Wilk (Rage Against the Machine, Audioslave, Prophets of Rage) sitting in on the entire recording session.

His follow-up record and latest release, ‘Born Against’, reveals him to be more than a one-trick pony stylistically. “Every new record is an opportunity to sit and think about how much has changed in your life and the world around you,” Kiranos says. “It’s a new opportunity to bring in both new and old influences. I really wanted to dive into ideas that I’d either been avoiding or ignoring within myself and figure out ways to align them with music I grew up listening to. Influences that may have been set aside in our older recordings.”

Kiranos, who grew up in Miami in a multicultural household, decamped to Dallas to record the album at the venerable Modern Electric Studio with Beau Bedford (Texas Gentlemen). This marked the first time Kiranos had explored some of the world music he'd long loved, including Eastern European folk and Australian country (“It has such an amazing sound to it,” he says of the honky-tonk of Down Under. “The rhythms are so dry and brutal.”) Kiranos felt Bedford was the only producer who could draw those sounds out of him. Together they entered the studio with merely the skeletons of the songs Kiranos had written. One by one, they fleshed them out in wildly inventive fashion. To say they threw the kitchen sink at this album would be an understatement; these guys threw the whole damn shack.

“The Fellowship” – as Amigo’s die-hard fans refer to themselves – continues to grow with each new show played and album released. His continued connection with audiences and unique, empathic lyrics are sure to carry Amigo the Devil into the hearts of many more. There is hope in the volatile, peace in the macabre, and light not just inside the tunnel but all around, and Amigo the Devil is here to tell us how.

 
Eggy
Schwa | @The 8x10 | view more info »
Nov
4

Eggy

Schwa


Friday Nov 4|doors 7:00 pm|18+
The 8x10|get directions »
10 E. Cross St.
Baltimore, MD|p: (410) 625-2000


Eggy

official band site »

Song by timeless song Eggy reaches out a hand, inviting you along as a great story unfolds. Eggy’s music traces the full spectrum of emotions evoked by a life well-lived alongside friends well-loved.


Schwa

official band site »

 
Cabinet
@The Hamilton | view more info »
Nov
5

Cabinet



Saturday Nov 5|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Hamilton|get directions »
600 14th Street NW
Washington DC|p: (202) 787-1000


Cabinet

official band site »

“We were just kids having fun, experimenting and making music with each other….. still are!”

Cabinet wears their influences like badges, honoring the canon of roots, rock, reggae, psychedelia, blues, bluegrass, country, and folk, weaving these sounds into a patchwork Americana quilt. But this music isn’t romanticizing or rehashing the past. Cabinet makes it mark on today. The steady aim of their harmonies soar straight onto target each time, the soaring vocals giving voice to the story of each song. Their music takes the long way home, treating its listeners like passengers on a ride through scenic back roads. Their live shows are inclusive, celebratory, and community-building. Members Pappy Biondo (banjo, vocals), J.P. Biondo (mandolin, vocals), Mickey Coviello (acoustic guitar, vocals), Dylan Skursky (electric bass, double bass), Todd Kopec (fiddle, vocals) and Jami Novak (drums, percussion) all live and love music, and aren’t afraid to show it.

Cabinet formed in 2006, bringing together players from various musical and personal backgrounds. Some of the members were barely old enough to drink legally, but their thirst for older music was unquenchable. Whether its rustic "American Beauty"-era Grateful Dead or old-timey bluegrass, Cabinet has digested it all. But that is not to say that Cabinet recreates older styles. No, this is music that might have its roots in the past, but it is current and vibrant, with a sense of celebrating the now.


 
The California Honeydrops
@Lincoln Theatre | view more info »
Nov
9

The California Honeydrops



Wednesday Nov 9|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
Lincoln Theatre|get directions »
1215 U St NW
Washington DC|p: (202) 888-0050


The California Honeydrops

official band site »

The California Honeydrops celebrate their 14th year together with the forthcoming release of their latest studio effort, “Soft Spot”, marking a return to live music with a national tour across the United States. This LP follows the release of their cover album, “Covers From The Cave”, live albums “Remember When: Vol 3” and “Honeydrops Live 2019,” and their first-ever double-album, “Call It Home: Vol 1 & 2” in 2018.

Led by dynamic vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Lech Wierzynski, and drawing on diverse musical influences from Bay Area R&B, funk, Southern soul, Delta blues, and New Orleans second-line, the Honeydrops bring vibrant energy and infectious dance-party vibes to their shows.

They’ve taken the party all over the world, playing festivals of all kinds and touring widely across North America, Europe, and Australia. In 2016 & 2017 the Honeydrops were honored to support Bonnie Raitt on her North America release tour—and in the past have been privileged to support the likes of B.B. King, Allen Toussaint, Buddy Guy, and Dr. John. Whether in those high-profile performances or in more intimate venues where the band itself can leave the stage and get down on the dance floor, the California Honeydrops’ shared vision and purpose remain: to make the audience dance and sing.

The Honeydrops have come a long way since guitarist and trumpeter Lech Wierzynkski and drummer Ben Malament started busking in an Oakland subway station, but the band has stayed true to that organic, street-level feel. Listening to Lech sing, it can be a surprise that he was born in Warsaw, Poland, and raised by Polish political refugees. He learned his vocal stylings from contraband American recordings of Sam Cooke, Ray Charles, and Louis Armstrong, and later at Oberlin College and on the club circuit in Oakland, California. With the additions of Johnny Bones on tenor sax and clarinet, Lorenzo Loera on keyboards, and Beau Bradbury on bass, they’ve built a powerful full-band sound to support Wierzynski’s vocals. More like parties than traditional concerts, their shows feature extensive off-stage jamming and crowd interaction. “The whole point is to erase the boundaries between the crowd and us,” Wierzynski says. “We don’t make setlists. We want requests. We want crowd involvement, to make people become a part of the whole thing by dancing along, singing, picking the songs, and generally coming out of their shells.”


 
The Revivalists
paris jackson | @The Anthem | view more info »
Nov
9

The Revivalists

paris jackson


Wednesday Nov 9|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Anthem|get directions »
901 WHARF ST SW, WASHINGTON, DC 20024|p: (202) 265-0930


The Revivalists

official band site »

Chart-topping rock band The Revivalists had been grinding for 10 years when their now platinum-selling single “Wish I Knew You” took off, setting a record for most single-week spins ever at Alternative Radio and becoming a mainstream phenomenon spending 9 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100. Now, their new hit songs from fourth studio album Take Good Care, including #1 Triple A and Top 5 Alternative single "All My Friends," and #1 Triple A and Top 15 Alternative hit single “Change” (their third Mediabase Triple A #1 in a row) – have become instant fan favorites and are adding to their more than 410 million total streams. The band has performed on numerous television shows including Austin City Limits, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert , Jimmy Kimmel LIVE!, Ellen, TODAY, and garnered major media attention from the likes of Rolling Stone, NPR, Billboard, Buzzfeed, Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, Forbes, Salon, HuffPost, Grammy.com, Alternative Press, Paste, UPROXX, Flaunt, Nylon, Interview, and more. They made a big statement in support of the anti-gun violence movement with their powerful song “Shoot You Down” which they performed during their debut at Lollapalooza, opened for the Rolling Stones, were nominated for a Billboard Music Award and two iHeartRadio Music Awards, were named Billboard’s Top New Rock Artist of 2017, and between sold-out shows at their biggest venues yet, including Beacon Theatre and Red Rocks, the band has also ignited festival stages at Bonnaroo, Governor’s Ball, Lollapalooza, New Orleans Jazz Fest, Outside Lands, and Pilgrimage. Renowned for their live firepower, soulful alt-rock anthems, and their distinct mix of many of the classic styles of American music, the 8-piece ensemble of pedal steel guitar, unique two-drummer set-up, horns, and more is led by the incredible voice of front man David Shaw.

Most recently, the band released their Made In Muscle Shoals live studio EP and accompanying documentary, which was recorded and filmed at the legendary FAME Recording Studio in Muscle Shoals, Alabama and directed by Jay Sansone of Human Being Media. Capturing the essence of The Revivalists at this exciting time in their 10-year journey, the Made In Muscle Shoals EP features brilliant re-imaginings of the band’s hits “Oh No,” “You & I,” “Change,” and “All My Friends” from Take Good Care, as well as a soulful rendition of The Bee Gees’ “To Love Somebody,” a gorgeous stripped down piano-and-vocal take of “Wish I Knew You,” and a never-before-released, brand new song “Bitter End.” The Revivalists also established their philanthropic umbrella fund, Rev Causes, which supports the essential work of organizations dedicated to reviving and investing in our communities, health, and environment. $1 from every ticket sold will be donated to a variety of organizations that are close to the band’s heart, including Center for Disaster Philanthropy, Everytown For Gun Safety Support Fund, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), Songs for Kids Foundation, and Upturn Arts.

The Revivalists are: David Shaw [lead vocals, guitar], Zack Feinberg [guitar], Andrew Campanelli [drums], George Gekas [bass], Ed Williams [pedal steel guitar], Rob Ingraham [saxophone], Michael Girardot [keyboard, trumpet], and PJ Howard [drums, percussion].


paris jackson

official band site »

 
Joe Russo's Almost Dead
@The Anthem | view more info »
Nov
12

Joe Russo's Almost Dead



Saturday Nov 12|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Anthem|get directions »
901 WHARF ST SW, WASHINGTON, DC 20024|p: (202) 265-0930


Joe Russo's Almost Dead

official band site »

Joe Russo's Almost Dead is Marco Benevento, Dave Dreiwitz, Tom Hamilton, Scott Metzger and Joe Russo. We're a Grateful Dead cover band.


 
The Mavericks
@Lincoln Theatre | view more info »
Nov
13

The Mavericks



Sunday Nov 13|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
Lincoln Theatre|get directions »
1215 U St NW
Washington DC|p: (202) 888-0050


The Mavericks

official band site »

The Mavericks, the eclectic rock and country group known for crisscrossing musical boundaries with abandon, has gone through three distinct phases since it was founded in Miami in 1989. An initial period of heady success marked by big hits and critical acclaim in the ‘90s. A long hiatus starting 2003 when the musicians each went their own way. And finally, a triumphant reunion in 2012 which held long enough for them to recently celebrate the band’s 30th anniversary.

Now, The Mavericks have ushered in the fourth phase of their evolution with the #1 Billboard debut of their first-ever, all Spanish album, En Español, released on the band’s own Mono Mundo label. Although all 12 tracks are in Spanish, as the title suggests, the collection represents a diversity of musical styles and cultural traditions, from tender boleros to brassy mariachi to reimagined Afro-Cuban classics. Seven of the tunes are familiar gems drawn from the vast Latin American songbook, while five are originals written or co-written by Malo.

Like the band’s entire body of music, this one album cannot be boxed into a single category. The songs are as diverse as Latin America itself, and as cohesive as the ideal of the American melting pot. To season this rich musical paella, The Mavericks add their signature country/rock/Tex-Mex flavors and a refreshing spontaneity to the mix. En Español flips the band’s usual fusion formula, which adds a striking assortment of genres – salsa, ska, norteño, mariachi, and much more – to its sturdy rock/country base. Now, the foundation is solidly Latin with streaks of irreverent rock and twangy guitars running through it, all branded with the unmistakable Mavericks style.


 
Couch
@Pearl Street Warehouse | view more info »
Nov
17

Couch



Thursday Nov 17|doors 7:00 pm|21+
Pearl Street Warehouse|get directions »
33 Pearl Street
Washington DC|p: (202) 380-9620


Couch

official band site »

Equipped with catchy hooks and powerhouse vocals, Couch aims to reshape familiar pop tropes in fresh ways. The Boston-based septet infuses pop songs with funk, R&B, jazz, and rock influences. Their vibrant sound is further defined by the members’ personal training in jazz, a cappella, and musical theatre.

Until Spring 2021, Couch members were scattered across the country at various universities; they tackled the challenges of being a “long-distance” band, writing and even recording virtually for three years. Despite these challenges, they celebrated the release of their debut EP, “COUCH,” in February 2021. The band injected each track with their signature flavor: expressive horns, warm vocals, and bubbling synths—crafting an oasis of joy for musicians and non-musicians alike.


 
Moon Hooch
@The Hamilton | view more info »
Nov
17

Moon Hooch



Thursday Nov 17|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Hamilton|get directions »
600 14th Street NW
Washington DC|p: (202) 787-1000


Moon Hooch

official band site »

Moon Hooch started in the NYC subway platforms in 2010. They are currently touring the world.

“I‘m realizing more and more every day that you can make anything happen for yourself if you really want to,” says Moon Hooch horn player Mike Wilbur. “You can change your existence by just going out and doing it, by taking simple actions every day.”

If any band is a poster child for turning the power of positive thoughts and intentions into reality, it’s the explosive horn-and-percussion trio Moon Hooch. In just a few short years, the group— Wilbur and fellow horn player Wenzl McGowen and Ethan Snyder—have gone from playing on New York City subway platforms to touring with the likes of Beats Antique, They Might Be Giants, and Lotus, as well as selling out their own headline shows in major venues around the country.

Though the band—whose members initially met as students at the New School—turned heads in the music industry as relative unknowns with a charismatic, unconventional sound (they play with unique tonguing techniques and utilize found objects like traffic cones attached to the bells of their horns to manipulate tone, for instance), they were already a familiar and beloved sight to strangers in New York, who would react with such joy and fervor to their impromptu subway platform sets that the NYPD had to ban them from locations that couldn’t handle the crowds. NY Mag once referred to their sound as “Jay Gatsby on ecstasy,” while the NY Post fell for their “catchy melodic hooks and funky rhythms,” saying they had “the power to make you secretly wish that the short [subway] wait becomes an indefinite delay.”

While the band’s busking days are behind them now, the lessons they learned from all those platform parties helped guide their approach to recording ‘Life on Other Planets.’ “What we discovered playing in the subway,” McGowen explains, “is that the more focus and the more energy you put into the music, and the more you listen to everything around you and integrate everything around you into your expression, the more the music becomes this captivating force for people.”

The band followed up 'Red Sky' by releasing the 'Light It Up' EP in 2018. Recorded in bucolic Williston, Vermont and co-produced by Tonio Sagan (grandson of famed astronomer Carl Sagan), this collection of three songs was a foray into a more electronic and studio-produced sound. Full of horn textures, big drops, and throbbing bass lines, these tracks extend the possibilities of their subway instrumentation. Between 'Red Sky' and the 'Light It Up' EP, the band uses an evolving arsenal of electroacoustic techniques to utterly demolish any and every possible barrier that could stand between your ass and the dance floor.

“When we were playing in the subways, we were playing entirely acoustic,” explains Wilbur. “It was just two saxes and a drum set. Then Wenzl acquired a baritone sax and we all started getting into music production and incorporating electronic music into our live shows.” At their performances, the band now plays through what they call a Reverse DJ setup, in which the live sound from their horns runs through Ableton software on their laptops to process recorded effects onto the output. In addition, to flesh out their sound on the road, the band began utilizing Moog synthesizers, an EWI (an electronic wind instrument that responds to breath in addition to touch), and other exotic woodwinds like the contrabass clarinet and bass saxophone. Wilbur has even added vocals to his repertoire on some tracks (something the subway never allowed him to do).

The band members all speak reverently of meditation and consciousness and the role it plays in their music (McGowen believes his introduction to it, spurred on in part by Wilbur and former member James Muschler, saved his life), but equally close to their hearts are the environmental causes they champion. Moon Hooch tries to live up to their green ideals while traveling as much as possible, playing benefit shows, organizing action days to support local farmers and co-ops, participating in river cleanups, planting trees, filming informative videos for their fans, and more.

For the members of Moon Hooch, commitments to consciousness, environmentalism, veganism, philosophy, and peace aren’t separate from their commitment to music, but actually integral parts of it. It’s all tied into that same core approach that led to their discovery on the subway platform: try, even if it’s just a little bit every day, even if it’s just with the power of your mind, to make the world less like it is and more like you wish it could be.

“I’d say all of our songs express the essence of that kind of energy,” concludes McGowen, “because before you can even think any thoughts, there exists the energy that drives those thoughts, and that energy is intention. I feel like we’re putting the intention of positive change constantly into our music. While we’re playing, I often see the future emerging: skyscrapers getting covered in plants, frowns turning into smiles, fistfights into hugs. I can see the energy of love and collaboration and trust replace the energy of fear, hatred and violence.” It’s an ambitious vision, to be sure, but considering the band’s track record at turning their thoughts and dreams into action and reality, perhaps it’s only a matter of time.


 
Billy Strings
@The Anthem | view more info »
sold out
Nov
18

Billy Strings



Friday Nov 18|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Anthem|get directions »
901 WHARF ST SW, WASHINGTON, DC 20024|p: (202) 265-0930
Sold Out


Billy Strings

official band site »

Raised in Michigan and now based in Nashville, Billy Strings is known as one of music’s most compelling artists. Since his 2017 debut, he has been awarded Best Bluegrass Album at the 63rd GRAMMY Awards, Breakthrough Artist of the Pandemic at the 2021 Pollstar Awards, named Entertainer of the Year and Guitar Player of the Year at the 2021 International Bluegrass Music Awards and has performed on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” PBS’ “Austin City Limits” and “Bluegrass Underground.” A respected figure across all genres, Strings has also recently collaborated with a wide variety of artists including Bill Kreutzmann, Luke Combs, Del McCoury, Fences, RMR and many more.


 
The Dirty Grass Players
@Pearl Street Warehouse | view more info »
Nov
18

The Dirty Grass Players



Friday Nov 18|doors 10:30 pm|21+
Pearl Street Warehouse|get directions »
33 Pearl Street
Washington DC|p: (202) 380-9620


The Dirty Grass Players

official band site »

Baltimore-born and bluegrass-bred, The Dirty Grass Players have established themselves as a national touring band with one toe-tappin’ foot in traditional bluegrass while pushing boundaries towards progressive jam-grass. They have the flawless technique of the craft of fast pickin', and combine that with fearless creativity that leaves the audience astounded.

Comprised of Connor Murray on Bass, Alex Berman on Banjo, Ben Kolakowski with the guitar, and Ryan Rogers on mandolin, this four piece is successfully bringing their growing fanbase a down & dirty performance. Their ability to seamlessly transition from down-home bluegrass to spirited improvisation makes each performance unique. Throw in some Allman Brothers, Pink Floyd, and Hot Rize, and you’ll quickly understand what they mean by 'dirty grass'.

Their inaugural self-titled album was released around the same time they won the 2017 Charm City Bluegrass & Folk Festival Band Competition. For the next few years, they successfully toured the Mid-Atlantic with festival and headline appearances all over the East Coast and support slots for the likes of the Travelin' McCoury's, Cabinet, and their hometown hero Cris Jacobs. In 2019, amid a busy touring schedule, they released their 2nd studio album, “Beneath the Woodpile”. Put together with alluring melodies, the band presents a sound precisely at the crossroads of traditional and progressive bluegrass.

The pandemic crashed their world - as it did most musicians. But the Dirty Grass Players made the most of it, and got to writing and recording. Now, with a tour schedule of over 120 dates in 2022, they're getting ready to release their 3rd studio album, produced by Cody Kilby (the Travelin' McCoury's). They're making their way across the country with many festival dates along the way, so catch them where you can and let's get dirty!


 
Psycho Killers
Talking Heads Tribute | @Pearl Street Warehouse | view more info »
Nov
19

Psycho Killers

Talking Heads Tribute


Saturday Nov 19|doors 10:30 pm|21+
Pearl Street Warehouse|get directions »
33 Pearl Street
Washington DC|p: (202) 380-9620


Psycho Killers


Talking Heads Tribute

official band site »

Same as it ever was? Not exactly, but pretty close! Psycho Killers, Talking Heads tribute band, will take you on a musical journey through the expansive catalog of one of the most diverse bands in rock and roll history! Known for their high energy, always changing live shows, Psycho Killers deliver a Once In A Lifetime experience that must be seen to be believed!

 
Billy Strings
@The Anthem | view more info »
sold out
Nov
19

Billy Strings



Saturday Nov 19|doors 6:30 pm|all ages
The Anthem|get directions »
901 WHARF ST SW, WASHINGTON, DC 20024|p: (202) 265-0930
Sold Out


Billy Strings

official band site »

Raised in Michigan and now based in Nashville, Billy Strings is known as one of music’s most compelling artists. Since his 2017 debut, he has been awarded Best Bluegrass Album at the 63rd GRAMMY Awards, Breakthrough Artist of the Pandemic at the 2021 Pollstar Awards, named Entertainer of the Year and Guitar Player of the Year at the 2021 International Bluegrass Music Awards and has performed on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” PBS’ “Austin City Limits” and “Bluegrass Underground.” A respected figure across all genres, Strings has also recently collaborated with a wide variety of artists including Bill Kreutzmann, Luke Combs, Del McCoury, Fences, RMR and many more.


 
SunSquabi & lespecial
@9:30 club | view more info »
Nov
19

SunSquabi & lespecial



Saturday Nov 19|doors 10:00 pm|all ages
9:30 club|get directions »
815 V Street NW
Washington DC|p: (202) 265-0930


SunSquabi

official band site »

Music brings us to our feet literally, figuratively, and spiritually. It inspires us to rise up to our day’s trials and tribulations, and on a larger scale, the world’s challenges. Through an unspoken sonic communion between three distinct musical identities, SunSquabi—Kevin Donohue [guitar, keys, production], Josh Fairman [bass, synth], and Chris Anderson [drums]—rouse us from inactivity and into action when we need the extra push through their signature live electronica sound. After racking up tens of millions of streams and delivering rapturous performances at legendary venues such as Red Rocks Amphitheatre, they incite personal revolution louder than ever on their third full-length album, Arise, releasing on October 26, 2022.

“Since we’ve all been put down very hard for the past two years, the entire world has felt this pressure, sadness, and struggle,” observes Kevin. “So we tried to relay a message of arising from the ashes and becoming something new. This album shows how we’re able to do so during a really tough time.”

SunSquabi has ignited the energy of listeners everywhere since 2015. They’ve unveiled a string of fan favorite releases such as Odyssey [2016], Deluxe EP [2017], and Instinct [2019]. In addition to praise from 303 Magazine, JamBase, Live For Live Music, and many more, WestWord proclaimed, “The record has electrifying moments,” and ThisSongIsSick raved, “SunSquabi never fails to bring the funk. Throughout the project they showcase their instrumentation highlighting shredding guitar riffs, funky basslines and crisp percussion with just the right touch of electronic production elements.” Along the way, they’ve sold out venues coast-to-coast, capturing one of three Red Rocks gigs so far on SunSquabi (Live at Red Rocks). The guys have collaborated with String Cheese Incident, Late Night Radio, Lettuce, and GRiZ, to name a few. During 2019, the musicians began kicking around initial ideas for Arise during marathon jam sessions.

As the Pandemic shut down touring, SunSquabi continued to write and record.

“A couple of songs came together as jams in the basement or on livestreams,” recalls Kevin. “We’d rework these improv-based ideas in the studio. It was an extended process. We definitely took advantage of the time.”

Josh adds, “We’re very proud of the band staying true to the music and to each other. We came together during the Pandemic and made sacrifices together. We’ve bonded as a band. We don’t try to jump on any trends. We’re true to ourselves and make music we feel in our hearts.”

You’ll feel songs such as the first single “Elephant Song” [feat. Dominic Lalli of Big Gigantic] released on July 29, 2022. Born as an improvised jam during one of the band’s early Pandemic livestreams, the guys orbit an otherworldly groove, cycling between warbling spacey guitar, hypnotic electronics, and a soaring saxophone solo courtesy of Dominic.

“With this song in particular, elephants represent luck, good strength, and loyalty,” Kevin elaborates. “‘Elephant Song’ represented us sticking together and sharing the ability to write songs still even though everything was shut down. It’s about realizing what you have and using your strength and the family around you, which is what Elephants do. It felt like it needed a lead voice, so it was natural to include Dom. Big Gigantic was a big influence for us to start SunSquabi. We’re integrating the electronic side of things into the hip-hop, funk, and rock.”

Then, there’s “Scorpion.” A danceable melody stings between a shimmering beat, neon keys, and fretboard-burning guitar, gestating during a run of live gigs feeding off the energy of the crowd, mountains, and desert.

“Scorpions are symbols of danger and death,” Josh states. “A scorpion is usually a warning. However, a scorpion may also show up in your life as a blessing. It’s similar to how we were able to take this dark period of time and turn it into a blessing and a symbol of power.”

“When everything is hard and unknown, you appreciate what you do have and what is important like your family, friends, and health,” Josh continues. “There’s no light without darkness. It’s about seeing the positives even though you acknowledge how weird everything is.”

In the end, SunSquabi uplift once again with Arise.

“If there’s an intention, it’s to lift people’s spirits,” Kevin leaves off. “There’s always a way to rise up.”

“We’ve been going to Hawaii a bunch, and we went to see the lava,” Josh adds. “With lava, you witness epic destruction of what was there before. At the same time, you’re witnessing the creation of the youngest land in existence. It’s a cycle of making something out of the destruction and moving on with appreciation. Arise is an example of what can come out of a rough situation. You can move forward.”


lespecial

official band site »

lespecial carve their own sonic path in modern music, creating their signature blend of “heavy future groove.” The power trio’s fresh synthesis of varied and divergent influences doesn’t underestimate the listener, reflecting a post-modern cultural climate in which fans have space on their aural palette for J Dilla, Radiohead, King Crimson and Tool.

Veering from hip-hop to metal, prog to house, pensive indie-rock to apocalyptic dub, leaving room for head banging and hip swaying alike, while still presenting a unified sound and vision.


 
Blue Star Radiation
@The 8x10 | view more info »
Dec
2

Blue Star Radiation



Friday Dec 2|doors 7:00 pm|18+
The 8x10|get directions »
10 E. Cross St.
Baltimore, MD|p: (410) 625-2000


Blue Star Radiation

official band site »

Musical artists collaborate all the time. We all can identify with that feeling when, your favorite band invites a well-known keyboardist, or killer guitarist on stage at a festival or show. It is simply magical.

When renowned keyboardist Nate Wilson, band leader for Ghosts of Jupiter, and founding member of both Assembly of Dust, and Percy Hill, came to moe.’s bassist and vocalist, Rob Derhak with the idea to form a band on those principles, the band Blue Star took its first breath. Enlisting the drumming prowess of moe.’s long time rhythm keeper, Vinnie Amico, and none other than guitarist and vocalist from the legendary bands The Breakfast, Kung Fu, and most recently Lotus, Tim Palmieri, the genesis of Blue Star came to be.

A band of improvisational, jam band musicians that all share an affinity for the classic rock we all know and love. The ditties, the anthems, and the deep cuts that remind us of a different time. They simply write the songs and play the covers that give the audience goosebumps.


 
Bumpin Uglies
Tropidelic | Joint Operation | @Baltimore Soundstage | view more info »
Dec
3

Bumpin Uglies

Tropidelic
Joint Operation

Saturday Dec 3|doors 7:00 pm|all ages
Baltimore Soundstage|get directions »
124 Market Place
Baltimore, MD|p: (410) 244-0057


Bumpin Uglies

official band site »

Bumpin Uglies knows all about hustle. The Maryland reggae-rock band had spent more than a decade on the road, starting with local open mics and backyard parties and growing into road warriors, building an ever-expanding audience with sold-out shows in clubs and prime spots at festivals from coast to coast, on one national tour after another. Then the pandemic hit, and touring shut down.

After being in motion for so long, singer and lead guitarist Brandon Hardesty wasn’t about to sit still, even if he couldn’t be out on tour. In fact, Bumpin Uglies never really stopped working — they adapted. The group returned to playing backyard parties around Annapolis, where they’re based, and added socially distanced concerts and full-band livestreams. In the fall of 2020, they also started releasing a new song every month as part of a project called the Never Ending Drop.

“We felt like prospectors going out and trying to find gold — it was just uncharted territory,” Hardesty says. “We had to figure out a way to make a living. That’s kind of what being a musician during Covid has felt like to me. You can do it, but you have to be bold.”

Hardesty has been bold from the start. He was waiting tables when he started the band in his early 20s. With an ear for melodies and the determination to succeed, he poured his time and energy into making Bumpin Uglies a success. For years, the band did just about everything themselves, from booking shows to releasing their own albums, building a sense of momentum along the way that eventually became self-sustaining, and then Hardesty wasn’t waiting tables anymore.

No surprise, then, that a musician with his strong work ethic found a way to take maximum advantage of the sudden surplus of time at home. For one thing, he got to hang out with his toddler son, and he and his wife welcomed a new baby. He also wrote a ton of songs. For the first time, Hardesty approached songwriting as a discipline, dedicating time to working on new music rather than waiting for inspiration to strike and then jotting down ideas in the back of the Bumpin Uglies van on his way from one gig to the next.

“I just woke up every morning and I made a pot of coffee, and I had this running list of ideas in my phone for hooks and riffs and progressions,” he says. “I sat down every day and made myself write a song, and 85 percent of them were pretty good. And it was awesome. I really, really enjoyed the process.”

The result is the band’s seventh studio album, Mid-Atlantic Dub, which they recorded in 2021 and plan to release this fall. After showing the breadth of Bumpin Uglies’ influences on the Never Ending Drop, from folk to classic country to hip-hop, Mid-Atlantic Dub brings the group — also featuring Dave Wolf on bass and vocals, Ethan Lichtenberger on keyboards and TJ Haslett on drums — back to the core of what they do.

“It’s very groove-focused,” Hardesty says. “It’s very hooky, very vibey. It’s very accessible, but there was no compromise on the storytelling or the lyricism.”

In fact, Hardesty had a lot on his mind while working songs for Mid-Atlantic Dub. He had recently lost his own father while he was stepping into being a dad himself and letting go of the vestiges of childhood, all during the uncertainty of a global pandemic. It’s all there on “Slow Burn,” featuring Jacob Hemphill from SOJA. “Before the oak you got the sapling and the seed / Before you triumph you will swallow a defeat,” Hardesty sings over unhurried upstroke guitars and a beat laid back into a deep pocket.

“I was doing a lot of growing up during Covid,” he says. “It was very much like a survival thing, and when you’re in that kind of mode, it forces you to cut a lot of bullshit out of your life.” What’s left, in Hardesty’s songwriting as in his daily life, is what’s real, and what’s real stands a solid chance of connecting with an audience that appreciates openhearted lyrics paired with a tight reggae-rock vibe.

“For me, it’s just all about honesty,” Hardesty says. “That’s what I listen for when I’m listening to music. I want to feel like whatever the author’s saying is honest.”


Tropidelic

official band site »

“Every single second is a blessing if you count them all,” sings frontman Matthew Roads. You can hear the sincerity in his voice; the joie de vivre that oozes from everything Tropidelic does is apparent. When they take a stage, their synergy flows member to member ­– horns blow, knees kicked high and grins are passed from one man to the next. Almost immediately, it spreads to the crowd, lifting hands in the air as their feet begin to move. The pulse collectively becomes that of one.

The six-piece band from Cleveland, Ohio may be far from any tropical islands, but that doesn’t stop them from dishing out an interesting mix of reggae, hip-hop, and high energy funk for audiences across the country. Unapologetically original, Tropidelic has a deep and widespread appreciation for music that can be heard in each note. Some of the members are hip-hop heads, while others are into metal, funk or reggae. Each of these genres lends something to their collective sound. “We pride ourselves in being original in our musicality and personality as a band,” says Roads, “but also in not taking ourselves so seriously that it ruins the fun.”

Quickly elevating themselves in the live circuit, Tropidelic can be found spreading their soulful sound across the country in both intimate venues and music festivals, having shared the stage with and supported such acts as 311, Slightly Stoopid, The Dirty Heads, Pepper, The Flobots and Wookiefoot. Previously, Tropidelic has been featured at Electric Forest, California Roots Music & Art Festival, Reggae Rise Up, Warped Tour and 311 Caribbean Cruise, as well as the host of their own annual Freakstomp Music Festival.

Following on the success of their 2019 release, Here in the Heights, which debuted at #2 on the Billboard reggae charts, Tropidelic has released a series of impressive singles featuring guest appearances from Dirty Heads, Matisyahu, Devin the Dude and Shwayze. These singles have amassed over five million streams in 2020, and they are featured on their latest album, Of Illusion, which debuted on November 13th, 2020. Of Illusion was released on Billboard’s number one reggae label, Ineffable Records. Tropidelic has put in their ten thousand hours, and they have arrived on the national scene to the delight of their ever growing and rapturous fans.

Joint Operation

official band site »

Joint Operation is a powerful rocknroll band from Baltimore, MD. This explosive four-piece has made quite a presence up and down the East Coast and through out the Midwest. JO has been billed with some of the biggest names in the genre.

WELCOME TO THE CIRCUS.

Looking into the core of their music, you can hear influences of bands they all grew up loving. A little like the musicianship of the Beatles mixed with the funkiness of RHCP, throw in some Devo stage action, and you got JO. With the filling sounds of Josh Lewis’ powerful vocals and Mike Busch's savory guitar licks, you will be up and feelin' the music in no time. Accompanying them, is the rhythm section made up of Daniel Gallagher’s funky bass hits that are always right in the pocket with drummer Fabrizio Scotto’s hard-hitting fills and snaps. Joint Operation values the idea of connecting with others through their music, while giving the audience a live performance they will never, ever forget. The band hopes to create music and play live shows to help others forget the struggles of life, while screaming out their problems at the top of their lungs. JO brings feeling.

Their debut album, “Scuffed” was released on July 27th, 2019. Gaining over 26,000 streams in the first week. Now reaching over 148,000+ streams less than a year later. Accompanying this release was a SOLD OUT album release show at the 8x10 in Baltimore, MD. This record focuses on talking about life, happiness, and struggles, while bringing in the party with the lively music of their mixed genres.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the band took to the studio and wrote like never before. On December 4th, 2020, the single "Overlooked" dropped from their upcoming record. Gathering 46,000 streams within two months. February 19th, 2021, the group dropped their sophomore release "The Thrill of Stress", gathering 88,000+ streams on Spotify alone in less than a month.

Joint Operation is about expressing yourself, making what you love, and not giving a damn about the naysayers. JO is always trying to be greater. With huge performances, and countless tours under their belt, they are ready to travel farther out and share their music with others. They hope to push themselves harder and celebrate music and art with others all over the globe!

 
Karina Rykman
@Pearl Street Warehouse | view more info »
Dec
10

Karina Rykman



Saturday Dec 10|doors 7:00 pm|21+
Pearl Street Warehouse|get directions »
33 Pearl Street
Washington DC|p: (202) 380-9620


Karina Rykman

official band site »

Karina Rykman plays bass, sings, jumps around, and laughs a lot. In doing so, she has garnered rare attention and avid listenership. Straddling the worlds of jam rock and indie pop drenched in psychedelia, Karina’s effervescent presence comes to life in musical form. With only six singles released, Karina has built a reputation as an unmissable live act. Her debut single “Plants” reached over a million streams, with the other singles not far behind. She can hardly contain herself about her yet-to-be-released studio record, as the best is truly yet to come.

Karina’s power trio sounds larger than the sum of their parts. With Adam November (Guitar/Loopers/Effects) and Chris Corsico (Drums), Karina has headlined clubs across America, bringing her rapturous unbridled energy to her reciprocally passionate fans. Prestigious opening slots include supporting Khruangbin at the Capitol Theatre, and the Infamous Stringdusters at Red Rocks. With the panache to win over any crowd, Karina’s show has taken over major festivals such as Bonnaroo, Peach Music Festival, Sweetwater 420 Fest, and more.

In 2016, Karina joined Marco Benevento's band on bass. With Benevento, she’s opened for Vulfpeck, Dispatch, The Claypool Lennon Delirium, Guster, and many more. We’d be remiss to exclude her television appearances on The Today Show, America’s Got Talent, a feature on ABC7, and most recently, in the 8G Band on Late Night with Seth Meyers.


 
Cory Wong feat. Victor Wooten
Power Station Tour | and special guests Trousdale | @9:30 club | view more info »
Feb
22

Cory Wong feat. Victor Wooten

Power Station Tour
and special guests Trousdale

Wednesday Feb 22|doors 6:00 pm|all ages
9:30 club|get directions »
815 V Street NW
Washington DC|p: (202) 265-0930


Cory Wong feat. Victor Wooten

official band site »

Music motivates at the most primal level.

You instinctually hum a tune in order to get pumped up in the morning, for fuel on the treadmill, to soundtrack your commute, or as the pre-game to a big night out. As much as he treasures his roles as a guitarist, composer, and producer, Cory Wong fashions himself “a hype man,” first and foremost. Living up to this classification, he slings a Stratocaster and hurls “dad jokes” from the stage with the same panache, poise, and power.

“For me, it’s all about the listener’s experience,” he explains. “I want them to have a visceral response like: ‘I feel better,’ ‘That was really fun,’ or ‘I got to escape for an hour.’ You’ll hear my voice through the guitar, but I’m just a hype man. To uplift audiences with instrumental music that has no singing or lyrics is a fun challenge. I’m trying to solve the riddle. If I can get one person to feel good this way, it’s a success.

Straight out of Minneapolis, Cory positioned himself as music’s answer to motivational speakers like Tony Robbins since emerging in 2011. Head-spinning rhythm guitar wizardry, technical ebullience, laugh-out-loud jokes, and radiance on stage established him as both a sought-after collaborator and celebrated solo artist alike. He lent his talents to television programs such as The Voice at the dawn of his career. After an impromptu meeting at the weekly jam hosted by Prince’s rhythm section (where the Purple One often either performed or watched), he crossed paths with Vulfpeck who welcomed him as a frequent collaborator and member of the band. Solidifying a fruitful partnership, the group named their most popular instrumental track “Cory Wong,” in tribute. Lighting up the stage in the band everywhere from Red Rocks Amphitheatre to Madison Square Garden, he remains a cornerstone of Vulfpeck’s storied gigs.

“I try to feature the guitar, but I don’t force myself into being the star of every song,” he says. “The instrument plays an appropriate role. It’s not all flash. I’m bringing rhythm to the forefront where it’s not so shreddy. I refer to it as ‘Covert chops.’ I’m doing things that are sneakily hard, but they lay in the cut. I allow the song to breathe and present myself as more of a composer rather than a guitar player.”

In the end, Cory transmits joy in its purest form through the guitar.

“The guiding light is to impart a feeling of joy,” he leaves off. “I want people to experience instrumental music in a different way. This is hype. It’s more than just guitar.”


Power Station Tour

and special guests Trousdale

official band site »

Trousdale is a powerful female band consisting of Quinn D’Andrea, Georgia Greene, and Lauren Jones. Their melodic and heartfelt harmonies are often compared to The Chicks and The Staves, but the girls draw inspiration from a wide array of music, including Crosby Stills and Nash, Kacey Musgraves and HAIM. Driven by their passion to empower young women, Trousdale is committed to making quality music that spreads a message of self-acceptance and love.