We’re entering the final stretch of particularly nasty presidential election, and quite possibly headed towards a global financial meltdown. For me, the sign of the apocalypse was the site of an elderly black man tooling around Greensboro’s West Market Street in a Toyota Camry with its front hood fastened with rope, offering tips on the cheapest gas prices and begging quarters in exchange. That means it’s time to take a deep breath, and remember what it means to be alive. Pull your honey close. Hang out with friends. Go out and enjoy live music. Greensboro folk troubadour Bruce Piephoff plays a noontime concert at Center City Park in downtown Gate City on Wednesday. Relying heavily on voice processing, pop hooks and the kind of youthful bubblegum lyrics that inspire teenage screaming, Breathe Carolina lands at Greene Street in Greensboro to promote the duo’s new CD, It’s Classy, Not Classic. They’re actually from Denver, and they’re sharing the tour with Michigan’s Every Avenue, New Mexico’s BrokenCyde and New York State’s the Morning Of. True Carolinians Layden open the show. The Bittersweets, Stephen Delopolous and the Deep Vibration converge on the Garage in Winston-Salem on Thursday. Greensboro Fest, the Gate City’s collegiate back-to-school rock party, goes down at the Blind Tiger on Thursday. No word on the lineup at this time. The dotmatrix project presents the Tiny Meteors and Janik at the Green Burro on Thursday, and the Bowmans and Paleface collaborate a around the corner at the Green Bean. A dip under the railroad bridge via McGee Street lands you on Martin Luther King Drive, where Signature Soundz holds forth at the Press Wine CafÃ©. Onetime Marvin Gaye protÃ©gÃ© Frankie Beverly and his band Maze bring silky R&B nostalgia to the Joel Coliseum Theatre in Winston-Salem on Friday, where they’ll be joined by Carl Thomas. Over in the Garage’s intimate listening room, Ashville’s Mad Tea Party and Charlotte’s Jem Crossland & the Hypertonics cook with a different kind of gas. Friday’s indie rock bet in Winston-Salem is Love Craft, Hammer No More the Fingers and Cold Hands at the Werehouse. Risky Business plays a two-night run at Riders In the Country in Greensboro on Friday and Saturday. The Five L’s, Waiting for Wednesday, a Light Divided, the Last Hour and Cythera preside at Greene Street on Friday, while the Mantras make stew at the Blind Tiger on Friday, and Australia’s Manic Fanatics evangelize with guitars at the Christian venue CafÃ© Jam. The Reidsville Lake Music Festival features Kris Ferris, the Backwoods Band, Full Circle, Thick-N-Thin, Jonny Colley, GT Summerlin, Bret Hart & Friends, Greg Phairas, Austin Simmons, Bill Koontz and Andrea Reese at, where else, the Reidsville Lake Park Amphitheater in Rockingham County on Saturday. More festival action on the same day, but on Greensboro’s bohemian strip at the eastern edge of UNCG’s campus. Despite the demise of her gallery, the Space, Jaime Coggins continues to orchestrate events with the Tate Street Festival, featuring the Bronzed Chorus, the Mantras, Hot Politics, Thacker Dairy Road, Not Dead Yet, John Doe & the Runners, Kristen Leigh and Dakota Joe. Later on Saturday, Evan Olson and Dana team up at the Press Wine CafÃ©, and Lendy Pendent works out her pipes at Tequila Joe’s. Back in the Twin City, Mt. Airy’s Kelley & the Cowboys share billing with Greensboro’s Tremors at the Garage on Saturday. Steel drummer Tracy Thornton plays his regualar gig at Steak Street in High Point on Monday, Sept. 29. Bluesman John Hammond made his debut on Vanguard Records in 1962. At 64, he’s back with a new record produced by G Love called Push Comes to Shove. He’ll prove he can still handle the rough and touble with opening act the Whipsaws (from Sarah Palin country way up north in Alaska) at the Garage on Sept. 30.