On Saturday, I was really excited to see Rhiannon Giddens at Wolf Trap as the opening act for Mary Chapin Carpenter. Rhiannon and I both attended Oberlin College, a liberal arts college and music conservatory in smalltown Ohio, about 40 mins southwest of Cleveland. Rhiannon was classically trained at Oberlin as a opera singer. I, on the other hand, have exactly one musical bone in my body — my right tibia, which is not an especially useful bone for music — and was in the liberal arts college.
“Choke My Chicken.” So goes the refrain of “Farmer Brown/Chicken Reel” from Lyle Lovett’s album Natural Forces (2009/Lost Highway). Lyle and His Large Band played the song early in their set Friday during their annual appearance at Wolf Trap. If anyone in the audience didn’t already know that Lyle is a bit, shall we say, unconventional, this song certainly tipped them off.
Despite the threat of severe weather and flash floods in the region, the long-awaited Zac Brown Band concert at Nationals Park went off without a hitch on Friday when the band’s Down the Rabbit Hole Live Tour paid a visit to the nation’s capital.
Recently, The Avett Brothers released “No Hard Feelings,” a single held over from their last studio album, True Sadness, published in 2016 by American Recordings. The band, led by brothers Scott Avett (banjo, lead vocals, guitar, piano, kick-drum) and Seth Avett (guitar, lead vocals, piano, hi-hat), undertook an extensive summer tour that took them to the Union Band and Trust Pavilion in Portsmouth, Virginia, on Friday. Nathan Payne was there to shoot some pictures!
Of course, The Avett Brothers arrive locally to perform at Wolf Trap on Saturday, Aug. 18, in a sold-out show.