At 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 25
Randy Wood Guitars, 1304 E. Highway 80, Bloomingdale. $30
Not often do we get to bask in the glow of the top bluegrass band in the country. Two weeks ago, the Grascals won Instrumental Group of the Year, band member Danny Roberts took Mandolin Performer of the Year, with Banjo Performer of the Year going to Kristin Scott Benson. This was at the annual SPBGMA Bluegrass Music Awards in Nashville.
In 2006 and 2007, the Grascals won the International Bluegrass Music Association's coveted Entertainer of the Year award. The band's Country Classics With a Bluegrass Spin - a Cracker Barrel exclusive - is the top-selling bluegrass album in the country this month (the record features duets with the likes of Dierks Bentley, Brad Paisley and others).
They had long and quite fruitful associations with both Dolly Parton and Hank Williams Jr. And - talk about your clash of cultures - on Feb. 2, the Grascals played a salute-to-the-troops show in Dallas with none other than Kiss' fire-breathing Gene Simmons (Little Texas and Five For Fighting were also on the bill).
Like most high-energy contemporary bluegrass ensembles, this one has an impressive dues-paying resume: Grascals members cut their musical teeth playing with the likes of the Osborne Brothers, Larry Cordle & Lonesome Standard Time, the Sidemen and New Tradition. See grascals.com
At 10 p.m. Thursday, Feb 24
Loco's Grill & Pub, 301 W. Broughton St.
A funk, blues and soul band from Chicago, with a three-man horn section and a fist-tight rhythm section? Count me in! Lubriphonic is a tear-the-roof-off-the-sucka ensemble fronted by guitarist Giles Corey, who was cut from the same cloth as the late, great Terry Kath of the band Chicago - he's a shredder. Lubriphonic is here to introduce us to a brand new album, The Gig is On, which Hittin' the Note has called "one of the most invigorating records of the year." See lubriphonic.com
CHECK IT OUT
For Feb. 25 and 26: Howler, Niche, Lonesome Swagger and Dead Yet? are at the Jinx Friday, to help raise money for the production of We Were Max’s, a proposed documentary about the legendary NYC club Max’s Kansas City ... Not a bad deal, getting in to catch Cusses for free. The Saturday show is the Wormhole’s second anniversary celebration – and the hard–hitting threesome will share the bill with Atlanta’s Attention System, a rocktronica outfit with a killer light show, and A Fight to the Death, playing “avant garde gypsy Americana Western Swing”...