upcoming shows you should check out
Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit at the Blind Tiger.
With his new record Here We Rest, Jason Isbell’s seems to have completed the transition from the hard-scrabble Southern rock of the Drive-By Truckers to the mollified country sound he when he departed from the band in 2007. There were a few stops in soul and blues along the way, but when Isbell & the 400 Unit land at the Blind Tiger on Sunday, expect a much more delicate, mellow sound on the new stuff. That will particularly hold true if he’s still touring as a trio rather than a quintet, though when he plays his Truckers material, little changes. Fellow Alabaman Maria Taylor, who spent several years and albums as a member of the dream pop duo Azure Ray, will joins him for this tour, and locals Matty Sheets & the Blockheads will open the night. Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door, which opens at 7 p.m.
Unsung hero of Michigan rock rolls into the Triad
At some point, everyone passes on an opportunity that they later regret. For Mitch Ryder, you’d have to think that it was turning down an offer to be the vocalist for Electric Flag. It was 1967 and his backing band the Detroit Wheels had just dissolved after a string of hits when he was approached by Mike Bloomfield to sing for a band that would encompass all music purely American. Rather than hook up with the juggernaut band that included drummer Buddy Miles, the prodigiously soulful Ryder was prodded by producer Bob Crewe into forming a new band that was es sentially a cheesy lounge act, and his career plummeted from there. Some say that after pinching from Little Richard and James Brown for the last decade, he wasn’t interested in branching out into the blues. More than 40 years later, his voice can’t quite rattle the windows like it used to, but it’s still as gravelly and soulful. He’ll play the Bucked Up Super Saloon in Kernersville this Sunday with DAM-FI-NO and AURA3, Tickets for the show are $15 and $20, and doors open at 7:30 p.m.
Vandaveer comes to Winston-Salem
The pet project of DC-by-way-of-Kentucky songwriter Mark Charles Heidinger, the folk-pop duo (sometimes trio) Vandaveer instantly drew comparisons to the heavyweights with their mostly live debut album Grace & Speed — Donovan, Dylan, Waits, Drake, Simon, etc. Heidinger left the Washington DC psych-rock band These United States after a pair of successful albums to explore his own sound, one that he has cultivated from a sparse, Southern twang into an almost thunderous roar with his latest Dig Down Deep. Consider that he’s shared the stage with the likes of Bon Iver, Alejandro Escovedo, Vashti Bunyan, Vetiver, the Ditty Bops, Smog and Fleet Foxes in that space, and you’re very likely to see how that collective influence has rubbed off when he plays Krankies Coffee this Tuesday, May 17. Folk rocker Ferraby Lionheart, whose video for “Harry and Bess” has a hilarious cameo by Rainn Wilson, will join Vandaveer. Marcus Hodges will open the evening. Cover for the show is $5, and music starts at 8 p.m.