ryan’s forecast

by Ryan Snyder

upcoming shows you should check out

Good ’grass at the Carolina Theatre

After scoring big at the recent SPBGMA Bluegrass Music Awards, it’s safe to say that the Grascals are now among bluegrass music royalty. They not only took home the trophy for Instrumental Group of the Year, but mandolinist Danny Roberts was honored as Mandolin Performer of the Year and Kristin Scott Benson won the award for Banjo Performer of the Year. To put it in perspective, it’s like the World Series Champs having both the MVP and the Cy Young Award winner. It’s simply not fair for other teams. They’re no strangers to hardware, however, having won SPBGMA’s Bluegrass Band of the Year award in 2010, the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Emerging Artist of the Year award in 2005 and earning its Entertainer of the Year honor in both 2006 and 2007. When the sextet hits the Carolina Theatre on Saturday, they’ll be featuring selections from their recent album The Grascals Friends: Country Classics With a Bluegrass Spin. It’s a duets album, but technically they won’t be alone. North Carolina’s own fiery group of pickers Mountain Heart will open, and though their founders Adam Steffey and Steve Gulley have since moved on to other projects, the latest lineup has more than enough potential to bring home a slew of awards in coming years. Tickets for the show are $24.50 and the music starts at 8 p.m.

Touring king comes to NC

Take a guess at who was the highest grossing touring artist in 2010? If you guessed U2 you’d be close. They did have the highest per-show gross, but only played 22 shows last year. Lady GaGa, on the other hand, played 122, far more than any other solo headlining act, but still didn’t pull down more scrilla than Bon Jovi. The rocker with the cultish following sold out 69 of 69 shows last year on his way to earning more than $146 million. When he comes to the RBC Center on Monday, Feb. 21, expect more of the same. On in support of Bon Jovi is a contemporary who never quite made the splash that the Young Gun did, but he’s been extremely active in writing songs for Bon Jovi as of late, including hits “Say It Isn’t So” and “Bounce.” It’s noteworthy that Falcon’s band includes drummer Louis Winfield, a hard hitting Greensboro native and disciple of Tony Williams and Billy Cobham. Tickets range from $19.50 to $129, and the show starts at 7:30 p.m.

Kid Rock and Jamey Johnson at the Greensboro Coliseum

The last time Jamey Johnson came to the Triad, it was as the headliner at a hot, crowded and testy Millennium Center crowd. The rugged country singer took the room through a long set of his originals, followed by, in his words, whatever the hell he felt like playing. Given the “friendly” crowd, that included some stuff that reflected his throwback mentality a little too honestly. When Johnson, recently nominated for the Academy of Country Music’s Album of the year for The Guitar Song, comes to the Greensboro Coliseum in support of Kid Rock, he may not have any choice but to tone down the homophobic rhetoric just a little bit. Still, it’s worth noting that even though Johnson comes in as a supporting act for the fading Kid Rock’s Born Free tour, he’s likely the bigger draw here, even in Rock’s first Greensboro appearance. Tickets for the show are $25, $39.50, $49.50 and $89.50, which starts at 7:30 p.m. Southern rocker Ty Stone will open.