by Ryan Snyder

Upcoming shows you should check out


In a presidential race that even Nate Silver couldn’t call, Doyle Lawson edged out Del McCoury this month for the title of President of Bluegrass. His campaign promises for the post include pushing policies favorable to the key of G and Monroevians and newgrass disciples across the aisle. Lawson and his band Quicksilver are first taking a quick victory lap, which will include a stop at the Carolina Theatre this Friday for a set that will include a few favorites from his 35+ albums, but also a mutually agreeable agenda of holiday classics of the bluegrass variety. It’s sure to be a festive, but presidential start to the holiday season. Tickets are $22.50 for adults, or $20.50 for students, seniors and military. A $2.50 Theatre Restoration Fee will be added to each ticket.


“Treme” S01EP08: Antoine Batiste (played by Wendall Pierce) is running late for a gig sitting in on trombone for one of New Orleans’ finest funk bands at (what was then) Howlin’ Wolf as he was prone to do. The band in question is Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk, and Antoine makes it just in time for a long, smoky foray into the sounds of NOLA, as “Treme” is prone to do. The song that’s played is “Meanwhile…”, a deceivingly clever little funk ditty that could have come from the songbook of his pops Aaron. Along with guitarist Ian, son of Charles, Ivan isn’t the only Neville in the band, and their brand of funk rings of that old-school flavor. With players like Trombone Shorty and Big Sam Williams, Neville’s band is a part of the second wave of New Orleans funk, that blends the musicianship of the classics with the aggressive self-assurance of hip hop. They’re back in town at the Blind Tiger this Saturday with support from likeminded Greensboro funk outfit Doby. Tickets for the show are $12 in advance and $15 at the door, and the music starts at 10 p.m.


Since the Great Southern Rock schism of 2007, the Drive-By Truckers have gotten all the glory, but their ex-guitarist Jason Isbell has been in the driver’s seat of the better band. It’s not until just recently when Isbell’s “Alabama Pines” was recognized as Song of the Year at the Americana Music Awards and Honors, however, that that idea actually carried some merit. The Truckers surely remain the masters of grungy, white-trash sentimentalism, but Isbell has refined his repertoire well beyond stock characters ruining their lives to husky narratives and big riffs. The three-piece horn section that has come and gone since his 2009 self-titled album finds a permanent home on his first full-length live record, Live From Alabama, though unfortunately it may not make the trip to Isbell’s upcoming performance at Ziggy’s on Dec. 4. He is bringing a quintet, as opposed to the power trio that has frequented his Triad stops in recent years. Tickets are $17 in advance and $20 at the door, and the show starts at 9 p.m. with a band that says it’s not too early to start naming groups after Neutral Milk Hotel songs, Communist Daughter.