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Indiegrrl Showcase

This coffeehouse on the Southern end of Forsyth Park is one of the only places in the area to glimpse up-and-coming acoustic songwriting talent. This quartet of regional female artists is affiliated with Indiegrrl, the world’s largest organization dedicated to promoting independent female musicians – and this same lineup will also appear at notable Ga. venues like Eddie’s Attic in Atlanta, and Club 1244 in Columbus. Each artist must pass muster from a committee of their peers to play sanctioned events such as this, so taken together, these four provides a nice snapshot of what’s bubbling out of the Peach State asphalt these days.

Local songstress (and organizer) Lauren Lapointe appears as expected, playing a selection of stark, original material off her 2 CDs, along with: Gainesville’s Julia Carroll, who transitioned into “hard folk” after years in rock and metal bands; Vicki Blankenship (also from Gainesville), Indiegrrls’s CEO, dubbed the “Female James Taylor” by the Raleigh daily; and Columbus’ Nicki Sutherland, a native South African, who moved from there to here, and from classical piano to folk guitar.

Free to ALL-AGES, with a suggested donation of $5 - $10. Sat., 7:30 pm, The Sentient Bean.

Nickel Creek

This Grammy-winning acoustic trio of mandolin, guitar and fiddle is widely credited with helping to push traditional bluegrass into the 21st Century, through their unique and winning combination of mountain air vocal harmonies, lightning-fast picking, and bold, eclectic approach to songwriting and arranging. Having played together for well over a decade (even though they’re only in their 20s), these former child prodigies are the closest thing the acoustic pop world has to teen idols. But don’t let that fool you. Each member is widely hailed by many old-timers as being near the top of their field. Virtually guaranteed to impress. Fri., 8 pm, Johnny Mercer Theatre.

The "Rick Elvis" Show

“Rick Elvis” has been honing this tribute to the dear departed King for years now. Unlike many Elvis impersonators (hope that’s the preferred nomenclature – I don’t wanna get a peanut butter-and-banana sandwich in the kisser!), Rick actually sings, instead of just miming.

Hey – if you love Elvis, you’ll either get a kick out of this, or it’ll make you want to pound a few drinks (or both), and if you don’t love Elvis, well, that probably doesn’t matter. This is as much a sociology class as a concert. Best of all, food and drink proceeds go to help the various charitable causes supported by the American Legion. How can you beat that?

$10 tickets sold at the door on the night of the show. Fri., 8 pm, American Legion Post #184 (Thunderbolt).

Savannah Sinfonietta & Chamber Players

Lately it seems as though there have been more opportunities to see live recitals of classical music in this area than we’ve been afforded in years. This group is launching a new series of 6 chamber pieces designed to run through 2007.

They’ll alternate between “world class compositions” written for small groups and larger conglomerations approaching traditional chamber orchestra size. This program, entitled “Small Forces/Big Music” includes string quartet works by Beethoven, Dvorak, Gershwin, Mozart and Villa-Lobos, and will also prominently feature a guest soloist, soprano Heidi Bindhammer. Ticket prices have yet to be announced, but they can be purchased at the door, or in advance by calling 352-7490. More info is available at www.savannahsinfonietta.org. Sat., 7:30 pm, Trinity United Methodist Church (Telfair Sq.).

The Fundamentals

This newly-minted rock, blues and soul combo is essentially a stripped-down (and more easily manageable) lineup of the still-thriving local 13-piece R & B cover band The Sapphire Bullets of Pure Love. Bassist and vocalist Phil McDonald, lead guitarist John Banks, rhythm guitarist and vocalist Tim Love, and drummer Bill Norton say they’re leaning a bit more toward open-ended improvisations than the tightly orchestrated set pieces The Bullets are known for, so they should prove a versatile and potent club act – and one that can actually fit on most stages... Sat., 9 pm, Baja Cantina (The Landings).

Captured By Robots

I’ll make this one short: Punk rock guitarist and songwriter got fed up with fielding complaints about his poor social skills from bandmates, so he built a group of hydraulic robots that actual play instruments (electric guitar, trap set, horn section). He programs them in advance, and then pretends to be their kidnapped slave, forced to play loud, antagonistic punk ditties about everything from The Old Testament to Star Trek: The Next Generation – all the while fielding foul-mouthed insults from his “captors.”

Sound ludicrous? It is. It’s also intermittently hilarious, and the fact that he was recently ordained as a mail-order minister –and is offering to legally marry audience members onstage at each tour stop– should make for an even more bewildering event. Sat., 10 pm, The Jinx.

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Jim Reed

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