THE CONNECT FIVE: Shows to see this week


WED JAN  17 | 8 PM

After the initial iteration collapsed in 1985, guitarist Rick Miller recruited Mary Huff on bass and Dave Hartman on drums. Miller’s NC-to-SoCal upbringing and the rhythm section’s Roanoke roots resulted in what they called a “swamp rock thing.” It was a fortuitous decision, and the lineup has endured for more than 35 years. The live show is a riot, Miller is an astounding guitar player, and they have developed the least corny crowd interaction you’ve ever seen. Despite a stint on Geffen in the 90s and movie and licensing deals, they’ve maintained their indie/underground spirit and play with bands from Americana and alt-country to ska and punk. Songs range from surf rock to roots to psychobilly, but it all fits under their sonic umbrella. Local classic country cover song rockers The Intracoastal Playboys leave several area bars and one fishing boat unmanned for the opening slot. Reward them for the risk by arriving early, Savannah. Remember what early means?

SAT JAN 13 | 8 PM

Boyscott (pictured) began as a college dorm music experiment by singer/songwriter Scott Hermo in — where else? — Nashville. He added friends to flesh out the sounds, and over time, a full record was completed before a live show was ever played. Student priorities kept a solid performing lineup from developing, but shows were played with a rotating lineup, not unlike fellow Nashville rocker Nordista Freeze. Eight years after the dorm sessions, the band has morphed into a dreamy indie pop/rock outfit with distinct surf elements. Two genre-friendly Savannah bands open. Smalltalk mixes big and bold 80s British rock, jangly strumming, and loud shoegaze properly. Crimson Fever delivers a mellow garage rock vibe, stripped down and airy.

WED JAN  17 | 8 PM

Well, ain’t this unfortunate? Two A+ shows not only on the same damn night, but on the same damn WEDNESDAY night? Fate is toying with Savannah again. SCOTS might sell out, but this show is less expensive and should be every bit as satisfying. Don’t let the stand-up bass fool you. The Koffin Kats are punk rock wizards. Yes, the psychobilly angle can’t be denied, but it’s an addition, not the foundation. Touring and recording for 20 years out of Garden City (Michigan, not Georgia), they are highly skilled veterans of live, loud, in-your-face punk rock and will rock El Rocko righteously. Savannah’s Girlfriend From Hell drops riot grrrl bombs on the “cistem” with murderous, brat punk riffs. Operating in loud and driving Ramones mode, super stealthy punk rock outer space secret agents Manarovs drop in from the mothership for another downstrokes-only set.

FRI & SAT JAN 12-13 | 8 PM

Davis hails from Atlanta and played piano in the Georgia State University jazz band. This led to a tour of Scandinavia, and his music career was on. After studying at Berklee, he went on the road with the Glen Miller Orchestra and later the Artie Shaw Orchestra. Since then, he’s played on cruise ships, as the house pianist in many clubs, and performed at jazz festivals in Atlanta, Jacksonville and Savannah. He’s also a student of Taiji, so his yin and yang are all good. Joining Davis is Charlotte bassist Ron Brendl, who co-founded Big Octave, a sax-drums-bass project. Furman grad and fellow Greenville, SC resident Peter Dimery plays the saxophone. And for additional familiarity, fellow Glen Miller Orchestra drummer Justin Watt completes the quartet.

SAT JAN 13 | 8 PM

"I turn 18 in a few days, which is sad, 'cause that means I have to cancel my subscription to Seventeen Magazine." That was college student Cody Hughes’ first joke and he got to tell it opening for Lewis Black. He entered and won a contest only to spite his sister, but he liked it, and the crowd seemed to like it, too. Years later, he’s expanded his act to other (drug) topics like the different colors that DayQuil and NyQuil make you see and the tedium of talking to psychedelic mushroom aficionados. You’ll hear those and more in his 45-minute special on YouTube, “Hello Fellow Human.” It’s hilarious. He admits to millennial anxiety, but the laughs he gets from the eating dog food routine clearly overcome the nerves.

About The Author

Frank Ricci

Frank Ricci is a freelance writer living in Savannah, Georgia. In his career, he's contributed to many Las Vegas megaresort brands owned by Mandalay Resort Group and Mirage Resorts. He’s also worked with Dell, Root Sports Network, Savannah College of Art and Design, ad agencies in Las Vegas and New York, and a...

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