Kenny Wayne Shepherd performs at Wolf Trap on June 23, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
Bluesman Kenny Wayne Shepherd emerged from Wolf Trap recently every bit the Southern guitar hero. The fan sitting next to me saw Kenny several years ago at the much smaller Ram’s Head in Annapolis. He said that Kenny Wayne really brought his performance up to the scale of the stage. He absolutely shredded.
The Mastersons perform at The Birchmere on May 20, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
Married couple Chris Masterson and Eleanor Whitmore have performed, respectively, as the guitarist and the fiddler in Steve Earle’s band, The Dukes since 2010. They also record and perform as an acoustic duo, The Mastersons. They played new material at The Birchmere recently as openers for Steve.
Steve Earle performs at The Birchmere on May 20, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
Steve Earle came out to introduce the show Monday night at The Birchmere. He welcomed the audience to the Guy Tour, and said he’d been looking forward to this for a long time. He told us we’d hear a lot of Guy Clark’s songs and a lot of his songs.
Red Wanting Blue performs at Gypsy Sally’s on May 4, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
Red Wanting Blue fan were treated to a fantastic 90-minute set at Gypsy Sally’s over the weekend, but it was a performance that almost didn’t happen.
Becky Warren performs at The Hamilton Live on May 1, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
After recent set at The Hamilton Live, I told Becky Warren that her opening act for Della Mae ranked as one of the very best I’d ever seen. The widespread critical acclaim — from Rolling Stone Country, NPR — is deserved, and the comparisons to revered figures like Lucinda Williams are apt.
Della Mae performs at The Hamilton Live on May 1, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
Della Mae puts a fresh spin on bluegrass. In a genre traditionally characterized by a “high lonesome” sound, this Grammy-nominated lineup of all female dynamos is unlike anyone else. At The Hamilton Live recently, the band covered rock songs, like the Allman Brothers’ “Whipping Post,” with a boiling stew of strings, and they played string band music with the fervor and soul of blues rock.
Dawn Landes performs at The Hamilton Live on April 7, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
In her fourth show touring with Nick Lowe’s Quality Rock & Roll Revue, Americana singer-songwriter Dawn Landes put on a stunning opening set. The Nashville resident played tracks from her last two albums, as well as a forthcoming EP and a musical she’s creating.
Nick Lowe performs with Los Straightjackets at The Hamilton Live on April 7, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
I’d never seen The Hamilton as completely full as it was for Nick Lowe’s recent concert. It was completely sold out, seated and standing room alike. Nick Lowe deserved that reception.
Patty Griffin performs at 9:30 Club on April 3, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
Patty Griffin’s recent show at the 9:30 Club reminded me why she is one of my favorite artists.
Robert Earl Keen performs at The Birchmere on March 26, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
Son Volt’s “Tear-Stained Eye” played Robert Earl Keen and his band onto the stage at The Birchmere recently for an evening of songs and stories.