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ryan’s forecast

by Ryan Snyder

upcoming shows you should check out

Unsung NC greats play the Garage

In the ranks of obscure singer-songwriters, Malcolm Holcombe might be the next Michael Hurley. With an ever-expanding catalog of great songs and greater profile overseas, the Weaverville native holds a place as one of North Carolina’s greatest songwriters, but as a live performer and blues voice, he’s nearly unparalleled. Holcombe’s sound, according to David Fricke of Rolling Stone, is “Not quite country, somewhere beyond folk” and has been compared to greats such as Tom Waits and John Prine. With a voice like 40-grit sandpaper, he bleeds lonesomeness on songs like “You Don’t Come to See Me Anymore,” from his eighth release Gamblin’ House. In the past year he’s been profiled by the Wall Street Journal and No Depression, so he’s deservedly getting his due at long last. Live, he’s usually joined by multi-instrumentalist Ed Snodderly on dobro, though his performance at the Garage on Saturday will feature Asheville duo Screen Door Porch and rocking Knoxville quartet Mic Harrison & High Score. Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door, and the show starts at 8:30 p.m.

Now Trending: Justin Bieber Greensboro stampede

It’s been a busy year for Justin Bieber. Since My World 2.0 was released, he’s contracted syphilis, joined a cult, died in a car wreck and been forced to tour North Korea. Not really, but as a barometer for the hatred directed toward the Canadian teen idol, all of the above are rumors about him that were squashed at some point in 2010. There are indeed a lot of haters out there, and they aren’t wanting for ammunition. He can’t sing, is solely responsible for the LEGO Hair fad, is maddeningly arrogant and, based on his disastrous attempt to diss Tom Brady, can’t write a decent rhyme (“sacked like a sacker” — really?). But give Bieber at least some credit. Unlike most manufactured pop stars, he plays five instruments, so he’s a real musician to some degree, and he pays homage to classic teen pop in a way that probably flies over the head of his young fanbase. His megahit “Baby” sports a one-four-five chord progression identical to songs like “Earth Angel” and “Why Do Fools Fall In Love,” granted, with a cheesy hiphop beat underneath. Bieber will perform at the Greensboro Coliseum on Wednesday, Dec. 15 with guest Sean Kingston. The same folks who created Lady Gaga bring teen soul-pop quartet Mindless Behavior to you, who will open the show. Tickets are $36.00 and up, and the show starts at 7 p.m.

Paint the town brown with Gene Ween

Give Ol’ Gener his due. When not leading the general mayhem that is Ween around the country, he has put together a nice little quartet. Featuring Ween bassist “Diamond” Dave Dreiwitz, RANA guitarist Scott Metzger and the incredible Joe Russo, drummer for the Benevento/ Russo Duo, the Gene Ween Band’s set lists have varied wildly thus far, including everything from new Gene Ween solo material to Ween classics to covers by the Beach Boys, Alan Parsons and Instant Death. They’ll perform at the Cat’s Cradle this Saturday. Raleigh funk mavens Billy Warden & the Floating Children will play acoustic to open the show, which starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $17 in advance and $20 at the door.

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