I don’t know exactly what the deal is. The music offerings are a little skimpy this week in the last gasp of May before the full-on summer season really gets underway with lots of sweating in parking lots with plastic cups of cheap beer, getting soiled with barbecue sauce and listening to high-octane roots music.
First an education item: Going head to head with GTCC’s Larry Gatlin School of Entertainment Technology in Jamestown, Winston-Salem State University is rolling out a new degree track called “the bachelor of science in music business with emphasis on sound recording technology.” If you see yourself as the next Pharell Williams, this one’s for you.
Coming back down to earth, acoustic artist Rick Allred performs a free noon concert at the Shops at Friendly Center in Greensboro on Wednesday. Earlier in the day Trinity country singer Donna Hughes will be at Center City Park in Greensboro for a lunch-hour concert.
Outdoor easy-listening continues Thursday in Greensboro with a beach-music concert by the Band of Oz at Festival Park.
Florida sacred steel champs the Lee Boys join the Mantras at the Blind Tiger on Thursday. For a transcendent, soul-stirring good time, it would be hard to beat this pairing.
Down Interstate 40, Lisa Kyle appears at the Raven on Thursday.
Sleepy Horses, a band that transplanted its psychedelic prairie honky tonk from Lubbock to Athens, shares a bill with the Mediocre Bad Guys, SunMile and Val Indica at the Garage on Friday. Across the street, Charles Davis & Co. commandeer the stage at Elliott’s Revue, alongside S. Burns.
Jive Mother Mary appears at the Raven on Friday.
Back in Greensboro, Alicia Keys reigns at the Coliseum on Friday, supported by Ne-Yo and Jordin Sparks.
Darrell Scott’s “It’s A Great Day to Be Alive” might have been recorded by Travis Tritt, but that fact obscures his maverick sensibility as folk-music iconoclast in the shadows of the Nashville machine. Besides, he grew up in London, Ky., so he’s gotta be cool. On Friday, he’ll be at Mack and Mack Clothing on South Elm Street for a concert hosted by Triad Acoustic Stage. Thacker Dairy Road, who boast loyal fans in both the roots-rock and experimental jam camps, preside at the Blind Tiger.
Moving on to Saturday, catch Beneath the Wheel at the Raven, and the Renae Paige Trio at Harrison’s in High Point. Over in Winston-Salem, the bo-stevens and the Red Hot Poker Dots share the bill at the Garage.
It’s hard to say exactly what the stylistic common denominator might be for the bands appearing at the Crank Your Wagon Wiggle Fest at Somewhere Else Tavern on Saturday, but knowing proprietor Burley Hayes, there’s probably none. Try these on for size: Last Passenger, Biggest Secret, Anonymous, Generic Hustle, John Doe & the Runners, Trees Are Pretty and Neuropath.