Jon Scofield and the Piety Street Project
This one’s going to be a real doozy. What do you get when you combine one of the “Big 3” living jazz guitarists, two seminal New Orleans funk musicians and a noted producer and multi-instrumentalist who has performed as a member of the Beach Boys? Call it Jon Scofield’s Piety Street Band (www.jonscofield.com), who will be tearing down the Carrboro Arts Center on Saturday. Guitarist Jon Scofield made a name as one of the greatest living guitarists while playing as a part of Miles Davis’ electric band in the 1980s and went on to forge a reputation as one of the greatest living jazz guitarists. His accompaniment is no bunch of slouches either. The masterful George Porter, Jr. of funk legends the Meters will be holding down the bass, while British R&B pianist Jon Cleary draws his roots from more than two decades steeped in the New Orleans sound. The quartet is rounded out by drummer Ricky Fataar, who many might remember as Stig O’Hara in the hilarious 1978 Beatles’ send-up All You Need Is Cash. For jazz and funk fans, it’s going to be an unreal show. Tickets are $39 and $37 for Friends, the difference of which really makes that minimum $250 donation worth it in the end, doesn’t it?
Shakori Hills primer, part deux
I promised I’d go through the rest of the Shakori Hills Festival (www.shakorihills.org) lineup and I’m here to make good on my word. Things start to get a little wild as the sun sets Friday with acclaimed African musician Mamadou Diabat’ kicking off a run of what will surely be spectacular shows. Following him on the main stage is the witty singer/songwriter Todd Snider (www.myspace.com/toddsnider) before my most anticipated set of the entire weekend begins. International star Rachid Taha (rachidtaha.artistes.universalmusic.fr) will rock a few of the acoustic-minded heads in the crowd with his electrifying mix of rock, techno and ra’. He’s making a rare appearance in the US, so this is not to be missed. Saturday night has the rootsy Horse Flies (www.thehorseflies) and a solo Des Ark (www.myspace.com/desark) setting the stage for festival hosts Donna the Buffalo (www.donnathebuffalo.com) to do a late gig. The real late-night set, however, comes from the scorching blues band the Red Hots, who will be playing until the wee hours. The volume is turned down a bit on Sunday, but the jams will be just as hot with an afternoon run that includes bluegrass legend Ralph Stanley & the Clinch Mountain Boys (www.drralphstanley.com) and Justin Townes Earle, son of alt-country icon Steve Earle. Donna the Buffalo return with a few undisclosed friends to jam the waning hours of the festival out. Single day passes are available at $22 for Thursday, $30 for Friday, $37 for Saturday and $26 for Sunday. Youth single-day and weekend passes are also available, while kids 12 and under are free.
Acclaimed bluesman plays the Garage
A lot of people who write about music get their rocks off making wild comparisons between some artist they want you to hear and a previously established act, with near-total disregard for the validity of such. One great example is that bluesman Charlie Musselwhite (www. charliemusselwhite.com), who is playing at the Garage on Sunday, was called by the San Jose Mercury News “the second coming of Led Zeppelin, with Tom Waits on vocals.” Well that just goes far beyond the pale as a completely and utterly preposterous assessment. Zeppelin has sold 84 million records, second only to the Beatles, and Waits’ nonpareil voice has created one of the most rabid cult followings of any artist alive. That said, there’s more than likely an inkling of truth to the statement if it moved a professional to put their credibility on the line in such a way. Musselwhite does have a pretty fantastic r’sum’, including six Grammy nominations and countless awards from the blues circuit. He is noted for his incredible harmonica skills, raw vocals and acclaimed songwriting that seem to have gotten better with age, so check him out. The show starts at 8 p.m. and tickets are $20 in advance and $25 day of show.
CORRECTION: Last week, I incorrectly stated that the Bob Margolin performance at Zion Bar & Grille was free when, in fact, there was a $10 admission.