Well, then. It’s Halloween weekend. So, there’s that. Somewhat surprisingly, however, there seems to be a lot of nothing going on musically around town. That’s not to say there isn’t stuff happening; that’s just to say that there are typically more things to list in this space. We’re not saying. But we’re just saying. Anyway, large or small slate, there are certainly things to seek out as you dress up in embarrassing costumes, abuse the phrase “trick-or-treat,” and drink light beer. There are a whole bunch of Halloween-themed events happening everywhere from the Blue Sky all the way to Champion Billiards (and not to mention a few cafes in between). Then, of course, there is the day after Halloween, otherwise known as “Saturday,” where you can find the subject of one of our recent Q&As, Big Hoax, at Cafe Nola, as well as today’s Video Of The Day artist, Hand Painted Swinger, at JoJo’s. If The Beatles are your thing (and really: Who the hell can’t say The Beatles are their thing?), one of the best tribute acts this side of Wings will be taking over the Weinberg on Saturday night, otherwise known as “The Day After Halloween.” See what we did there?!? And then, of course, there is the single greatest polka-band-name in the history of music: The Polka Dots. Cuter than a box of buttons, they are. Cuter than a box of buttons. Come for the Clearspring bluegrass. Stay for The Nightcrawlers. Be safe over the next three days, friends. Halloween can bring out the … let’s go with “something” … in all of us.
Oh, wait. So you need something else to do the day after Halloween?! Boy, oh, boy. Aren’t you in luck! A few doors down from Cafe Nola is JoJo’s Tap House. And guess who’s going to be there? You’ve got it: Rockville’s Hand Painted Swinger, whose “My Last Laugh” you can hear above. Indeed, maybe Big Hoax takes a break over at Nola and you don’t want to stop rocking and rolling. All you have to do is step outside, take a right, and boom: The rocking and rolling shall continue. Why? Because the rocking and rolling never ends! Notice the exclamation point. For more about the band, click here.
Luke Alexander is Big Hoax. Or, well, he’s pretty much Big Hoax. He also grew up in Frederick and on Saturday, the day after Halloween, he’ll be bringing his Big-Hoax-Blend of original tunes to Cafe Nola along with Skribe. Based out of Annapolis now, we caught up with Alexander through a handful of emails, and below is the transcript. Tickets are only three bucks for the show, and as Alexander said yesterday on Twitter, “So many secrets will be revealed” in the following Q&A. This is the part where your interest should be piqued.
OK, so yeah. It’s not Jimmy Page. But … Halloween is coming up in two days and what better way to acknowledge it than to showcase this picture of somebody dressed up as Jimmy Page!? Get it?! Good. Behold a photo from Led Zepplica’s performance at the Weinberg a few weeks ago and then, once you’re done marveling at that, head out to Family Dollar and grab yourself a costume before it’s too late. Photo by Karen Valentine. You can check out her Facebook page here.
Hey, so, what are you doing the night after Halloween? You know – the day you shuffle through the candy (and hangover) you earned the night before? The day that single-handedly reminds you that winter is closer than you thought, now that November is in full gear? You know what we’re talking about, right? Right. Well, here’s an option: You could go check out Big Hoax and Skribe at Cafe Nola for a measly three bucks. We’ll have a Q&A with the former’s Luke Alexander later this week, but for now, here’s the mind behind Big Hoax’s description of his band’s song “War Boar:”
It’s Oct. 28, which means there are only three days until Halloween, for those so inclined to celebrate Halloween. As for those who indeed are so inclined to celebrate Halloween … well, one of your options here in town will be the fabulous Cafe 611, where a gigantic Shindig (their words, not ours) will go down all through the night and the fantastic fellas in Cyrenic will take the stage. Which brings us to today’s video: It’s the official clip for their “The Whites Of Your Lies,” which, if you think about it, is a pretty great name for a song. Tickets are 10 bucks for Friday’s blowout, but if you act now, you can save $1.50. Find out all you need to know about the event here.
Let’s start the week off with a photo of local kid-rockers Bad Seed Rising, who have been doing big things in pretty much every corner of the world. Here, they are rocking and rolling on the Shindig stage last month in Baltimore. If only our teenage years were nearly as awesome as these guys’ teenage years appear to be. Sigh. Photo courtesy of Cassandra Mullinix. For more of her photos, visit https://www.facebook.com/bucketofrock.
Quick: It’s the last full weekend in October and how is your fantasy football team doing?! Yeah, we know. Yikes. Anyway, the month is going out with a bang as perhaps the best slate of live music to come to town in October is ready to rock and roll all the way through the next three days. As we’re sure you’re all sick of hearing by now, Karen Jonas, she of playlist-to-the-right fame, is bringing a guitar player and presumably some tunes to Cafe Nola this evening. Not only is it during Cafe Nola’s anniversary week, meaning there is no cover charge, but it is also The Event Some Of Us Have Been Looking Forward To All Week. As in, someone in a tie will be there. Drinking. Alone. Moving on, elsewhere, we have banjo icon Bela Fleck coming to town on Saturday, and yes, there is still time to enter our ticket giveaway (we’ll be in touch tomorrow morning if you’re the lucky winner). Mary Black is saying goodbye to a decorated and impressive career on her last-call tour that hits the Weinberg tonight. Southern Culture On The Skids will be eating some of Larry’s delicious gumbo over in Shepherdstown (and as someone who has shared said gumbo with said band, you might want to head over to West Virginia before making it back to check out Ms. Jonas this evening). Prophets Of The Abstract Truth will bring a nice helping of jazz to Ayse on Friday. Shane Gamble returns to Champion. Phil Kominski, one of the nicest, greatest guys around, will be taking The Cellar Door stage on Saturday night, which also happens to be the same night the third Last Saturdays hip-hop event will go down at Church Street Pub. And then, of course, there is a band called Bag Of Humans. We’ll be virtually impossible to miss around town through the next three days, so if you’re rocking and rolling your way through Frederick, come on up and say hello. We might always look angry, but that’s only true … let’s say … 89 percent of the time. Promise. And to all a good night.
He’s played with everyone from Phish to Chick Corea to Asleep at the Wheel to a handful of orchestras. No other artist in the history of music has been nominated for more Grammys in as many different categories as he has been. He is without much question, the single most recognizable and innovative banjo player in the universe right now, and it’s not really all that close.
Now, along with his wife, Abigail Washburn, Bela Fleck will take the Weinberg Center for the Arts stage on Saturday night as part of a tour supporting the duo’s most recent set, “Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn.” We caught up with the legendary banjo player via email recently, and he talked about what it’s like to be on the road with his wife, how much he loves coming to Frederick, and what’s next for the 56-year-old banjo icon.
From Eric Dolphy’s 1963 gem of a record, all the way to Stanton Moore’s set of the same name this April, jazz cats have been using the word “conversations” to title their albums for almost as long as the genre has existed (which at this point spans beyond a century). It’s a term as common in the jazz medium as the word “groove” is in soul or the word “heavy” is in metal. These guys don’t talk with letters — they speak with notes. Intonations. Syncopation. They can walk into a room and begin speaking without ever uttering a word.