Upcoming shows you should check out
Sunday, September 13, Second Sundays on Fourth, Winston-Salem
If you don’t believe that the West Coast and East Coast have different vibes, listen to the Donkeys, a band from San Diego, California. There’s a metabolic difference. These guys aren’t in any real rush. On 2014’s Ride The Black Wave, their fourth full-length, the ocean looms large, with breezy vocal harmonies and hints of surf rock. But there are hints of Death Valley, with sun, sand, earthquakes and fire conveying an ominous corrective to the idyllic vision of the West. A sweet and mellow folk-rockish feeling pervades, then it gets nicely ruffled by raga-rock interludes like on “Nothing” and the sitar-laced “Imperial Beach,” and the Mellotron-drenched darkness of the title track. The band’s 2011 release, Born With Stripes, set them up as sly purveyors of So-Cal transcendence, but minus the messy bombast. The Donkeys strike a sweet spot between epic and spartan, or an even sweeter spot where the two overlap. At times the Donkeys bring to mind the Grateful Dead, the most monumental of all California bands, in that they have an expansive take on American music, shot through a cosmic prism, and their meanderings can be rewarding. But if your vision of The Golden State is more “Good Vibrations” than Haight-Ashbury, the Donkeys can conjure the Beach Boys as well. And, while we’re making California connections, with a singing drummer, precision vocal harmonies and folk-rock underpinnings, the Eagles are somewhere buried in their DNA as well. Loss and doom occasionally cloud the Donkeys’ music, but the layered vocals, slide guitars, and hooks provide a morphine-drip consolation. The Donkey’s play Winston-Salem’s Second Sundays at Fourth on Sunday, Sept. 13 at 4 p.m. There is no charge for entry. – John Adamian
TROMBONE SHORTY & ORLEANS AVENUE
Friday, September 11, Ziggy’s, Winston-Salem, 336.722.5000
With nine studio albums to date, various live-recordings and more than two dozen film, television and featured stage appearances, Trombone Shorty has more than staked his claim in the world of Jazz. Before even reaching the age of 30, Troy Andrews, birth name, has been able to garner such critical acclaim that he was featured in Grammy-produced documentary “Re:Generation,” which put the brass-bomber alongside Mark Ronson, Erykah Badu, Yasiin Bey and Zigaboo Modeliste to create a track. The result was a jazzy collaboration of several diverse artists that never really picked up the traction the Grammy’s had perhaps intended, but Trombone Shorty plays on. Backed by his full band Orleans Avenue, Trombone Shorty brings the New Orleans sound to stages all across the country, and with that comes the soul, essence and conscience of the Big Easy. Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue are playing with New Breed Brass Band, an up-and-coming outfit also hailing from New Orleans. Tickets to the show are $25-$30 and the show starts at 9 p.m. – Britt Chester !