MUSIC BOX: Alt-country is coming

By on June 23, 2015

Two hot bands and more summer series lineups

Randy Rogers Band (right), takes on the Tavern’s intimate setting Wednesday. Rabbit Wilde hops in Saturday.

Randy Rogers Band takes on the Tavern’s intimate setting Wednesday.

Texas country titillates the Tav

It’s not easy bringing acts like Randy Rogers Band—that often plays amphitheaters and arenas—to a room like Town Square Tavern, but that’s exactly what 307 Live has accomplished. The production company’s co-founder Harper Hollis grew up seeing the Texas-based band and over the last several years of promoting shows from the downtown establishment he’s been able to stage many of the groups he admired as a teenager and college student.

Just as Hollis has built something out of nothing, the Randy Rogers Band built its audience by combining forces in 2000. Rolling Stone ranked them alongside U2 and The Rolling Stones in its list of “Top 10 Must-See Artists” in the summer of 2007. The group earned $2.5 million that year, which is a staggering total for a still-developing act. Willie Nelson, The Eagles, Gary Allan and Dierks Bentley all picked them as opening acts for their concerts and the band’s last project debuted as the most-downloaded country album on iTunes. The dynamic five-piece is centered on songs that fit the rowdy party vibe of the concert circuit, but their music also says something that folks can identify with.

“These songs are definitely true, and they’re relatable to many different life situations that I’ve either gone through in the past or will go through in the future,” said Rogers, the lead singer and primary songwriter. “I just tried to create believable characters and relatable characters. I hear from fans that we really have helped them in real-life situations when they’ve applied the songs to their everyday life. That’s what I strive for in the songs that I write.”

Randy Rogers Band, 10 p.m., Wednesday at Town Square Tavern. $25. 307Live.com, 733-3886.

Concert on Commons + MoM

Concert on the Commons music series in Teton Village has announced headlining acts for the free outdoor, Sunday fundays that run July 19 through Aug. 30. The family-friendly venue atmosphere is laid back, attracting a wide demographic from twirling dancers to kids splashing in water fountains.

The lineup will look familiar to locals, while visitors will get to see why tribal hip-hop folk of Nahko & Medicine for the People (July 19), alt-country Reckless Kelly (July 26), and Pimps of Joytime (Aug. 16) have become local favorites. Other acts include new comers Dead Winter Carpenters (Aug. 2), a jamming double bill of Devon Allman Band with Moonalice (Aug. 9), and Third World (Aug. 23). One additional headlining act will be announced for the Aug. 30 slot, as well as supporting acts for each date. All shows are free, all ages and begin at 5 p.m.

Music on Main in Victor (Thursdays, 6 to 10 p.m., free) will kick-off this week with Todo Mundo and Mandatory Air. Todo Mundo was voted “Best World Music” band at the 2014 San Diego Music Awards, blending the musical flavors of Spanish rumba, reggae, Brazilian, Balkan and Middle Eastern styles. The remainder of the lineup will include The Mother Hips with Screen Door Porch (July 2), Blitzen Trapper with One Ton Pig (July 9), Young Dubliners with Brian Maw Band (July 16), The Suffers with the Canyon Kids (July 23), Ballroom Thieves and Greg Creamer’s Dirt Road (July 30), Stooges Brass Band with Sneaky Pete & the Secret Weapons (Aug. 6), and Nicki Bluhm & the Gramblers with Wyatt Lowe & the Mayhem Kings (Aug. 13).

Rabbits gone Wilde

When these rabbits went wild, they apparently reversed their band name and added a letter, after changing the band name once already. However, Rabbit Wilde (formerly Wild Rabbit and Br’er Rabbit) seemed to have settled into a sound, and a composition, that fits the vision of foot-stomp Americana the musicians have been envisioning from the wooded areas of western Washington. The trendy two female, two male combination incorporating ukulele, cello, kick-drum, guitar and a harmonious vocal blend approaches a sound pioneered by The Mamas and The Papas.

When I ponder the most talented in local songwriting talent, Patrick Chadwick’s lyricism, arranging and melodic vocal approach is certainly interesting. If there were only more outlets in Jackson for his lighter side of indie-folk, we’d see a lot more of what he has to offer. You can catch him Saturday as Rabbit Wilde’s opener.

Rabbit Wilde with Patrick Chadwick, 10 p.m., Saturday at Town Square Tavern. 733-2886.

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About Aaron Davis

Aaron Davis is a decade-long writer of Music Box, a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, member of Screen Door Porch and Boondocks, founder/host of Songwriter’s Alley, and co-founder of The WYOmericana Caravan.

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