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Dodd Ferrelle & The Tinfoil Stars, Patty Hurst Shifter

Ever since his earliest professional gigs around Savannah as the frontman for Me ‘an Mills ( a mid-’80s cowpunk outfit that at times seemed a little too respectful of then ascendant regional heroes Drivin-N-Cryin), Dodd Ferrelle has shown a knack for penning a strong rock hook.

Throughout a handful of other twangy musical projects (including Rags, with Superhorse keyboardist Jason Anderson and Dreams So Real drummer Drew Worsham), this Athens transplant has honed that skill to a razor’s edge. His brand-new CD, The Murder of Love is being pitched as his best effort yet, the one that could and just might take his career to that oft-mentioned “next level,” and that’s more accurate now than it’s ever been.

Once more produced by veteran David Barbe (Sugar, Drive-By Truckers, Son Volt), it sounds much like his last few records, but there are subtle differences. This time out, there’s more pop and less roots in the mix, and though Dodd’s voice is an acquired taste for some, the tracks which find it high up in the mix are by far the most effective.

Whenever this band comes to town, it’s a reunion of sorts for old friends and extended family. It’s also a great show by someone who’s dedicated their lives to that thing we call rock.

Openers Patty Hurst Shifter are about as close as you’ll get to an Americana supergroup these days. That is, if your idea of what constitutes a supergroup has more to do with talent than mainstream notoriety.

Formed on a lark years ago, the North Carolina group has – at various times – included members of such fabled could’ve beens as Whiskeytown (Ryan Adams’ early outfit), Snatches of Pink (a Let’s Active offshoot), and 6 String Drag (an underrated group championed by Steve Earle). Simply put, this is a fantastic band that deserves serious nationwide acclaim and massive record sales.

Equal parts Crazy Horse, The Dukes, early Jayhawks and The Heartbreakers (Petty’s, not Thunders’), they’ve got the scratchy, intertwining vocals, tremolo guitars and apocalyptic piano runs down pat – plus a rhythm section to die for. They’re a perfect match for The Tinfoil Stars, and the combination makes this your best bet for a post-Wilco hang (or a decent substitute if you couldn’t snag tickets to that sold-out Trustees theatre show. Fri., The Jinx.

The Immortal Lee County Killers, Bottles & Cans

Formed from the ashes of infamous Alabama shitrockers The Quadrajets, this powerhouse trio (originally a duo) of guitar, drums and keyboards have worked hard to deconstruct gutbucket American blues music until it dies screaming. While some may find their frenzied, caterwauling racket to be derivative of more well-known purveyors of the form as Jon Spencer and Jack White, it’s worth noting that these guys get a hell of a lot more waydown than either of those fashion models.

This is far-beyond-raw emotion channeled through relentless slide guitar mantras. The group takes their name form their base of operations, Mr. Jerry Lee Lewis himself, and the fact that they play each show as if their souls depend on it, and they intend for this music to live forever.

Local openers Bottles & Cans draw their own inspiration from hardscrabble blooze icons like T-Model Ford and Hound Dog Taylor. They revel in the crepuscular and foggy haze that seeps out of intense electrified R & B. Another great match-up. Sat., The Jinx.

Reverend Jeff Mosier

It’s not every day that you’ll find one of the biggest names in the jam-band scene playing for free at a Methodist church. But, then again, this is no ordinary musician, and no ordinary congregation.

Banjoist and singer Jeff Mosier is known for leading the recently reunited acoustic fusion group Blueground Undergrass (they’ll be appearing at this year’s Savannah Music Festival), as well as for tutoring Phish in the ways of roots music, and recording and gigging with everyone from Leftover Salmon, to Widespread Panic, to The Allman Brothers Band. He’s also an ordained member of the clergy.

He’s been invited to appear at this all-day celebration of the restoration of Trinity United Methodist’s historic building. He’ll take part in the 11 am worship service, and then give a solo show later in the evening at what is commonly known as “the Mother Church of Methodism in Savannah.”

The church itself was established on Valentine’s Day of 1812 as Wesley Chapel, and in honor of its 193rd year, a celebration will commence at 2:30 pm. This will include musicians, clergy, choirs and liturgical dancers. The congregation has a long history of serving eclectic and varied groups of the faithful, and they’re hoping this unorthodox approach will continue and thrive well into this new millennium.

This free show by one of the premier psychedelic musicians in the USA would seem to indicate that is to be the case. Sun., 6 pm, Trinity United Methodist Church (Telfair Square) - FREE TO ALL AGES.

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Jim Reed

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