a gig you’ll regret missing: Meklit Hadero at Dollhouse on 1/21

Meklit Hadero was born in Ethiopia, raised in the U.S., and heavily influenced by the arts scene in San Francisco. She was named a TED Global Fellow in 2009, has served as an artist-in-residence at New York University, has been involved with myriad other arts projects, and is an activist driving The Nile Project, which is promoting collaboration among “hip-hop and traditional musicians from Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Sudan and Egypt.”

And she makes some damn good music that has garnered rave reviews from around the world.

If you’re interested in finding out more about Meklit, you can check out this preview by Kenneth Rosen in Do and this interview by Bill DeYoung for Connect Savannah.

Or you can just show up at Dollhouse Productions at 980 Industry Drive in West Savannah on the evening of Tuesday, 1/21.

Leslie Adele, the talented singer from A Nickel Bag of Funk, and Atlanta alternative soul singer Danni Cassette will be opening. Adele is scheduled to go on at 8:30 p.m., with taking the stage Cassette at 9:15. That should put Meklit on stage around 10 p.m. Tickets are $12 and are available at the door.

Here’s Meklit with “Leaving Soon”:

Here’s a live version of “Call”:

And “Soleil Soleil”:

CUSSES, The Veraflames, GAM, The Rogues & more booked for Beatles’ tribute on 2/7

We’ve posted before about efforts by Savannah Rocks! to preserve musical history and build bridges between generations of musicians and music lovers.

Savannah Rocks!’ user-created bulletin board of local rock and roll history is still hanging at The Sentient Bean, and now we know the full lineup for the big 2/7 show in the American Legion Post #135 ballroom commemorating the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ appearance on Ed Sullivan.

Here’s the poster:

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As you can see, the lineup includes CUSSES, The Veraflames, GAM, The Rogues, Voodoo Soup with special guest Jack Sherman, The Bill Avila All-Starts, and Ed Sullivan himself (?).

The Savannah Rocks! website has more info about the event, the bulletin board, and the organization’s goals. You can also find them on Facebook. Click here to buy tickets for the 2/7 show — that page also features info on each of the acts. Click here for the Facebook event.

Bruce Springsteen gives two shoutouts to Savannah native Kristina Train

Savannah-raised and London-based singer-songwriter Kristina Train was mentioned twice this week by Bruce Springsteen in major national radio interviews promoting his new album High Hopes.

Springsteen raved about Train’s work in an interview on iHeartRadio and in an interview with Ann Powers on NPR. From the latter:

I’m gonna plug some people here because I love their records. […] Kristina Train: very Dusty Springfield. There’s a song called “Dark Black” that’s fantastic. I love that.

“Dark Black” is the title track from Train’s latest album:

As far as I know, the last time Train performed in her hometown was during the 2010 Savannah Music Festival — a really well-received set at the Morris Center.

Let’s hope she finds her way home again soon.

Perfect Pussy, Crazy Bag Lady, Tonto, Wet Socks at Hang Fire – more photos

There’s not much I can add to the previous comments about this show. Saying that it was intense is like saying summer in Savannah is hot; apt, but an understatement at best. Wet Socks were a pleasant surprise add on to the list which was unexpected as they had just played Hang Fire the night before this show. Tonto’s set was one of the best executions I’ve seen them put on in the few shows of theirs that I’ve been able to catch. Crazy Bag Lady killed their set as usual and definitely set the bar pretty high for Perfect Pussy. Not to be outdone, Perfect Pussy delivered a fast and heavy set that combined noise punk and hardcore with such intensity that I even had to spend a few minutes in the pit in front of the stage. I’ve even got a nice, little scar to prove it (something that I haven’t left a show with since college)!

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The Accomplices at The Broken Spoke – photos

With so many musical choices in Savannah Friday night, I took the easy way out and went to a show a little closer to home, The Accomplices at The Broken Spoke Coffee House & Cyclery (whoa,that’s a mouthful) on Hilton Head Island. I was actually killing two birds with one stone, I’d wanted to check out the venue for a while, and had somehow never seen The Accomplices before. I’d be pretty happy checking out either one again.

The Hilton Head music scene is an odd thing, there’s always plenty of young people and people who still act young around, but sometimes the scene is vibrant and exciting, and sometimes it seems like there’s just not much going on. Veterans of the scene remember The Old Post Office hosted Southeastern touring acts nightly, with Hootie and the Blowfish and Edwin McCain packing the place regularly. The Blue Nite or Blue Note, depending on the era, hosted some pretty great stuff, with multiple Fishbone shows, Seven Mary Three and the like coming through regularly. Then there was a great period of Shoreline Ballroom shows featuring Snoop Dogg, Social Distortion, Hank Williams III, Silversun Pickups, Les Claypool, and The Misfits, among others. It was a huge room, and other than Snoop Dogg, which was PACKED, the shows always seemed underattended to me and it was no surprise that it just didn’t work. The scene currently seems to consist of The Big Bamboo Cafe, which does some cool stuff, and Wild Wings, with their stable of acts playing a regular rotation. The point is, if I hear of a new venue, I definitely want to check it out.

Their Facebook page describes The Broken Spoke as a “Local, community driven music lounge and bicycle shop featuring organic Costa Rican coffee, teas and your favorite beers and wines”. Okay, I like bicycles and coffee and love music and lounging, so when I saw that the Accomplices were playing there, I took the opportunity to see what it was all about. The space was larger than I expected, but still cozy, with the bar situated in the middle and couches and chairs facing the stage at the back of the room. Comfortable is the word that immediately comes to mind. The audience held quite a few musicians, and a couple of them ended up on stage by the end of the night.

The Accomplices sounded great, I love that “Lowcountry string band” sound. They had a washboard (electric, with effects pedals!) player with them all night, a guest guitarist sat in for several songs, and then a guest didgeridoo player helped them cover The Beatles “Dear Prudence”. Yes, I said a didgeridoo. That was a first for me. The band seemed to have a good time and the crowd was into the set, dancing, and cheering after each song. I actually saw THE WORST dancer I have ever seen, I sure hope that guy didn’t drive home. I was glad he only “danced” for one song because I could not look away, it was awe inspiring. I would definitely recommend seeing The Accomplices if you haven’t, or again, if you have, and if you see that an act you’re interested in is playing The Broken Spoke, it’s a comfortable, fun place, worth checking out.

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Dope Sandwich launches Kickstarter, takes over Hang Fire on 1/18

Dope Sandwich, the Savannah-based hip hop label that has been at the forefront of the local scene for over a decade, has entered the new year with new goals and ambitions.

With plans to release three albums in 2014 — by F.E.B, KNife, and Miggs — Dope Sandwich has launched a Kickstarter campaign with a plethora of diverse rewards. Check out the campaign. Here’s the accompanying video:

And here’s one from KNife:

On Saturday, 1/18, Dope Sandwich is presenting a show at Hang Fire featuring Miggs, Electric Park, The Difference Machine, and KNife. Click here for the Facebook event.

Bill DeYoung has a revealing interview with KNife (Kedrick Mack) in this week’s Connect Savannah: A new beginning for Dope Sandwich.

Savannah was the home of Big Boi and the late Camoflauge, we have a number of talented acts active right now, there are regular hip hop nights at The Jinx, hip hop gets prominent play on local radio, and the genre seems wildly popular around town, especially among young people. Despite all those and other assets, the local scene isn’t always supported as much as it seems like it would be.

It’s good to see Dope Sandwich hitting the ground running in 2014.

Larry Jack’s Magical Music Tour 1/16/14 – 1/21/14

Hi guys,
Just as expected, last weekend was full of good music. I was just in a discussion with a friend about what my favorite show of the weekend was, then I realized that I was listing too many choices. Of course, now that I am on my own blog I can talk about as many bands as I want 🙂   Lobo Marino at the Sentient Bean on Friday were excellent, they will be on my list every time they come to town. Not very often I get to see a harmonium. I think the Burning Mansions should play at the Jinx every time they put on one of their rare shows, what a great venue for their Black Sabbath-type sound. I thought Tonto at Hang Fire was one of the best shows I have seen Anders Thomsen and company play. The Accomplices always put on a good show at Molly MacPherson’s and they did not disappoint on Saturday. Although I am not always in the mood for punk music, Priests at Graveface Records on Sunday were a pleasant surprise, I really enjoyed the show. And Ray Lundy at Foxy Loxy on Tuesday was the perfect way to end my musical week, one of my favorite venues with one of my favorite musicians playing to a great crowd.

Don’t worry, if you missed last weekend, this weekend looks like it will be just as good, although it will be a little colder. There are several shows that I have very high expectations for.  This will be another long music weekend, with an all-day show at Doc’s on Sunday that is not to be missed.  On to the picks.

Thursday 1/16
Jason BibleRocks on the Roof – An acoustic show from the Train Wrecks frontman
TimeCop vs. DangerSnakeMolly MacPherson’s (10p) – Matt and Zac from the Accomplices

Friday 1/17
WallerDub’s Pub (8p) – Bluegrass music at Dub’s.  A great way to start the evening.
Rachel Kate, Lovely Locks, Waits & Co. – Jinx (10p) – Any of these bands are worth seeing on their own.  I expect an excellent show.  Don’t miss any of these acts, especially former Shaniqua Brown singer Rachel Kate.
HypnoticsMolly MacPherson’s (10p) – I will be back and forth to this show several times.  This is one of my favorite party bands in town.

Saturday 1/18
Train WrecksWarehouse (8p) – The Train Wrecks are another band that has somehow turned into one of the old-timers around town.
Soul GravyMolly MacPherson’s (10p) – Guitar rock band
McLovinsCongress Street Social Club (10p) – Sound kind of Bob Seger-ish to me, for better or worse.
Miggs, Knife, Electric ParkHang Fire (10p) – This will be an intense show of hip-hop music at Hang Fire.

Sunday 1/19
Ryan Buttimer FundraiserDoc’s on Tybee (1p) – Another choice for best show of the week.  This will be an all-day affair with Annie Allman, Samuel Adams Band, Michael Moody Band, Train Wrecks, Damon & The Shitkickers, Burning Mansions, Niche, and Bottles & Cans.  This could be one of the biggest gatherings of local musicians for all of 2014, and all for only $5.

Monday 1/20
Craig Tanner & Mr. Williams Open MicAbe’s On Lincoln (9:30p) – As I have said before, open mics tend to be hit and miss, but this one has a Mr. Williams blues set early

Tuesday 1/21
Ricardo & SashaFoxy Loxy (8p) – I would expect some good gypsy music from two of the members of Velvet Caravan.
Meklit HandoDollhouse – Soul, jazz, R&B music from Ethiopia.

Soft Science record release – more photos

We may have mentioned this a time or three, but this past weekend was jammed with great shows. To start it all off was the Soft Science record/cassette release party at Hang Fire Thursday night. Petee’s already been over this, but here’s a few quick thoughts and a good many photos, both of the show and the newly released vinyl.

I enjoyed J. Zagers’ bedroom electro soul (Is that a thing?) that opened the night/ I hadn’t seen him before and wasn’t familiar with his sound. Pretty cool. White Treasure followed, and the crowd at the front seemed to be really into it. I was pretty impressed with Thee Holy Ghosts, as I am admittedly a sucker for catchy rock, and they fit the bill. Plus, they have “Thee” in their name, making them almost instantly cool. The local crowd has definitely caught on to Wet Socks, and their fanbase, energy and musicianship seems to be growing by leaps and bounds each time that I see them. Awesome. It was a great night of live music.

I picked up the 7″ from Wet Socks and the one from Thee Holy Ghosts. They also had cassettes, but I lived through that format once. I do support anything that gets people to actually buy music, and if people are buying cassettes, then I guess you make cassettes. Download codes included so that, you know, people actually listen to the music. Anyway, the singles I picked up sound great and are beautifully done. Check out pictures of them after some shots of the performances.

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Burning Mansions, The Hotels, and Sins of Godless Men at The Jinx – photos

Following last Thursday’s show at Hang Fire came Friday night’s rock blowout at The Jinx. Starting things up were Burning Mansions, a local group of musicians that played a slightly bluesy, slightly jam inspired style of rock that was a good starter for the night. Next up, The Hotels out of Atlanta who delivered a poppier sound that seemed to take some heavy influences from the garage rock sound of the 90’s. Closing out the night was Savannah’s own Sins of Godless Men. Sins brought the heavy and furious sound that they’re known for and executed with their familiar blistering style. Check out some of pics below and see for yourself! Be sure to hit the jump for the entire set and check back tomorrow for a few additional photos of Saturday’s long awaited show at Hang Fire featuring the thrashy, noise punk outfit Perfect Pussy.

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Wye Oak, Future Islands, J Roddy Walston & The Business, Oberhofer, Wild Child, Kylesa join Savannah Stopover lineup

Savannah Stopover today confirmed 84 acts for the 2014 festival. Note, however, that we might yet see some new band added to the list, and we haven’t seen the detailed schedule for March 6-8. [UPDATE: Click here to see the bands by day.]

Four Stopover bands are playing Coachella: Wye Oak, Future Islands, J Roddy Walston & The Business, and Bear Hands. That’s kind of a big deal, especially given the quality and critical reception of those acts.

For its 4th installment, Savannah Stopover features a wider array of music than ever. There’s more music from the South, more from international acts, more heavy stuff, and more of the downright fun.

As previously announced, Stopover IV is also featuring three showcases of Savannah-based record labels.

With so much going on, those $75 3-day passes are looking like a better deal all the time, but I’d recommend the upgrade to the VIP ticket.

Confirmed Lineup — the headliners first with lots more after the jump
*new since 11/21 lineup announcement

Wye Oak*
Small Black
Future Islands*
J. Roddy Walston & The Business*
Oberhofer*
Kylesa*
Speedy Ortiz
Those Darlins
Hurray for the Riff Raff
Wild Child*
The Weeks
Miniature Tigers
Public Service Broadcasting
Caitlin Rose
Bear Hands
Weekend
Magic Man
Esben & The Witch*
Ex Hex
Matrimony
St. Paul & The Broken Bones

Soft Science’s Record Release Show at Hang Fire – photos

Last week was a killer time for the music scene in Savannah. With 4 days packed full of killer shows, there wasn’t a thing in the world that was going to keep me from checking out as many acts as I could. Kicking the 4 night stretch off was local upstart label Soft Science’s record release show at Hang Fire. The night began with J. Zagers, a one man act that combined intricate synths and sampling with delicate and minimalistic vocals. Following J. Zagers came White Treasure, a hip hop duo combining abrasive beats with even more intimidating lyricism. Next on the bill was Thee Holy Ghosts who picked things up with a bit of surf-rock tinged punk. Rounding out the night was Wet Socks, Savannah’s own garage rock duo who are building up their already strong following with a staggering amount of local shows. Check out a few photos from the night below and hit the jump to see the full set. Also, be sure to check back for more shots from the weekend.

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The Silver Palms opening for Jake Bugg for 4 UK shows

The Silver Palms, a young foursome from the southeast corner of Georgia, will be opening for Jake Bugg for four gigs in the UK in February.

The band had already announced dates with The Orwells on a United Kingdom tour — and this fresh news adds even more momentum to what could be a breakout year for The Silver Palms.

According to The Silver Palms’ Facebook page, they’ll open for Bugg on Feb. 15 & 16 in Newcastle, Feb. 22 in Edinburgh, and Feb. 23 in Manchester.

As I noted in a recent review of their first show at The Jinx here in Savannah, The Silver Palms have an infectious sound that has won them some quick allies in the music biz.

Here’s the one single and video that’s out right now, “Georgia Boy”:

And a couple of shots from that show at The Jinx (click here for more pics):

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And if you aren’t following Jake Bugg, then you are definitely missing out.