Preview: Nicole Atkins @ The Hamilton Live, 7/10/22

Nicole Atkins
Nicole Atkins (Photo courtesy Big Hassle)

New Jersey-bred singer-songwriter Nicole Atkins performs at The Hamilton Live in DC on Sunday, July 10, with support from Levi. On her latest album Italian Ice, Atkins conjures the romance and danger and wild magic of a place especially close to her heart: the Jersey Shore in all its scrappy beauty.

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Interview: Willie Nile (@ The Hamilton Live, 7/8/22)

WillieNile_Cristina Arrigoni
Willie Nile (Photo by Cristina Arrigoni)

Willie Nile is a New York City-based singer-songwriter whose recording career span reaches back to 1980. He’s hard to place in an a precise genre, as his influences range from Bob Dylan to Lou Reed, and he’s also covered The Clash. He’s a rock ‘n’ roller who, even into his 70s, is still the same  guy who wasn’t afraid to fight the record companies in a legal case that set a precedent.

But he’s also a trained pianist who can just as easily do a ballad as he might just rock out. His work finds a great balance between raw musculature and cerebral refinement, managing to thread in literary and cultural references without pretension. It’s rock with brains — it sounds great, and there’s steak to go with the sizzle.

Willie released a new album, The Day the Earth Stood Still, last year, and now he’s on tour. Willie and his band perform at DC’s The Hamilton Live on Friday, July 8, and Parklife DC’s Mark Engleson talked to him in advance of that show.

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Snapshots: Purity Ring @ 9:30 Club — 6/29/22

Purity RingPurity Ring performs at 9:30 Club on June 29, 2022. (Photo by Katherine Gaines)

Canadian dream poppers Purity Ring released Graves, a new EP, earlier this month, then zipped into DC on their USA tour for two dates at 9:30 Club this past week! Katherine Gaines shot the first of the two nights — it was a sold-out show.

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Live Review: Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway w/ Downriver Collective @ The Birchmere — 6/27/22

Molly Tuttle

Molly Tuttle (Photo courtesy the artist)

Guitar virtuoso and singer-songwriter Molly Tuttle’s “San Francisco Blues” is about how, to cite a cliche, you can’t go home again. When the Bay Area native returned to the area where she’d grown up, she found that it felt different, and she told us about it at The Birchmere recently. Her friends had moved away because they couldn’t afford it. That’s happening in major cities across the United States.

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Live Review: Duane Betts @ City Winery — 6/26/22

Duane Betts (center) performs at City Winery DC on June 26, 2022. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

Lazy July and August afternoons are traditionally called the dog days of summer. The fresh buds and flowers of spring have faded as the relentless heat causes trees, people, and dogs to wilt under an unforgiving sun. Thankfully, the only withering from the last Sunday in June came from Duane Betts and his two musical pals, Berry Duane Oakley (bass) and Johnny Stachela (guitars), blazing musicianship when they played City Winery DC on the 3rd stop of their Dog Daze Tour.

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Snapshots: Wallows @ The Anthem — 6/21/22

Wallows 7Wallows performs at The Anthem on June 21, 2022. (Photo by Katie Child)

California power poppers Wallows published their sophomore album, Tell Me That It’s Over, back in March, and they have been on the road in support of it. Wallows recently played a sold-out show at The Anthem in DC, and Katie Child was there to photograph the show.

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Live Review: American Aquarium w/ Caroline Spence @ 9:30 Club — 6/26/22

American AquariumAmerican Aquarium (Photo courtesy Red Light Management)

“I hoped this song would become irrelevant when I wrote in 2016,” said BJ Barham, frontman of country-rockers American Aquarium, when he introduced their song “The World Is On Fire” at the 9:30 Club recently. He continued, “It scares me that my daughter has less rights than my mother.”

BJ excoriated the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Dobbs, which eliminated the constitutional right to abortion. There was a real flash of anger as he spoke about the tyranny of old, white Christian men imposing their values on the country.

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Around Town: SAVOR: An American Craft Beer & Food Experience @ The Anthem — 6/24/22

SAVOR05
SAVOR welcomed 110 independent craft breweries to The Anthem in DC on June 24.

SAVOR this year was full of surprises. Yes, it was still the preeminent gathering of craft brewers serving up beers in a large conference-style format. But this year, SAVOR was held at The Anthem, DC’s 6,000-person music venue, and it decidedly felt more like a nightclub event and less like a curated exhibit.

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