LONE STAR RISING: If you didn't make it to Austin this year, you can stop feeling bad--Tucson welcomes a multitude of acts this week, including a few fresh from the SXSW fray.
They knocked 'em out at the Austin Music Hall where they played to a full house last Friday, and now you can catch Son Volt at the Rialto Theater, 318 E. Congress St., on Thursday, March 21. The band features former Uncle Tupelo members Jay Farrar and Mike Heidorn teamed up with Minneapolis music veterans Jim and Dave Boquist. Their critically acclaimed debut release, Trace, is a remarkable collection of 11 country-rock tracks with an unaffected interweaving of dobro, fiddle, acoustic guitar and honest rural poetry from the Midwest. Their hooky single "Drown" has been rockin' up the modern and alternative rock charts nationwide.
Mississippi roots-rockers Blue Mountain open the show. Doors open at 7 p.m. for show time at 8 p.m. Tickets are $6 in advance from the theater or at the door. Call 740-1986 for information.
Ruby showcased to a packed house at Stubb's in Austin last Saturday, where front woman Lesley Rankine growled through a thumping trip-hop set. On Friday, March 22, you can gyrate to Ruby at the Rock, 136 N. Park Ave. Formerly of the hardcore band Silverfish, Rankine continues the Scottish trend of powerful and compelling divas set forth by Annie Lennox, bringing a raw, energetic sensuality to Ruby. The debut release, Salt peter, combines hip-hop and trip-hop with flashes of punk and pumping rhythm with an industrial edge, delivered with a ferocious snarl. The single "Tiny Meat" has introduced the country to this talented force.
This is an 18-and-over show and tickets are $5. Call 629-9211 for more information.
Singer-songwriter Chris Smither makes his first headline appearance in Tucson in the intimate surroundings of the Southwest Center for Music, 2175 N. Sixth Ave., on Saturday, March 23. Smither is widely known for his rich voice and finger-pick guitar technique rooted in the rural blues tradition, as evidenced on his new album Up On The Lowdown. His song "I Can Love You Like a Man" was recorded by Bonnie Raitt as "Love Me Like a Man," who has referred to Smither as "my Eric Clapton."
The show starts at 8 p.m. and there is no opening act. Tickets are $11 in advance, with a $2 discount for TBS, KXCI and TKMA members. Outlets include Hear's Music, Zips, Loco, Antigone Books and the SWCM box office. Charge by phone at 881-3947 ($1 service charge). Tickets cost $2 more day of show.
Doug MacLeod, whose songs have been recorded by Albert King, Albert Collins and Papa John Creach, will appear in concert at the Rialto on Saturday, March 23, along with special guests the Sam Taylor Band and Heather Hardy, Stefan George, Tony and the Torpedoes, Chain of Fools, Tommy Walker, Dennis Offret, Ken Tucker and Jerry Glombecki. The show runs from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. and tickets are $5. Call 740-1986 for more information.
Greyhound Soul celebrate their impressive debut release, Freaks, at the Rock on Saturday, March 23, along with friends Marianne. The show starts at 9 p.m. and there is a $4 cover charge.
LAST NOTES: Alternative chart-busters Bush appear in concert at the TCC Arena, 260 S. Church Ave., along with Goo-Goo Dolls and No Doubt on Thursday, March 21. Tickets are $21.35 in advance, available at the TCC box office. Charge by phone at 791-4836. Cost jumps to $22.50 day of show. Call 791-4266 for information.
Club Congress, 311 E. Congress St., has a four band line-up on Friday, March 22, featuring Stinky Slinky, Pork Torta, Van Gogh's Daughter and Cortex Bomb. Cover charge is $3 and the show begins at 9 p.m. Call 622-8848 for information.
Piñata celebrate the release of their experimental self-titled album on Saturday, March 23, at Café Luna Loca, 531 N. Stone Ave. LIAR opens with Middle-Eastern melodic stylings. Doors open at 7 p.m. and cover is $4.
Percussion Plus concert series presents Joe Rush, Aaron Bonsall and Todd Hammes in the Acoustic Café at the Southwest Center for Music at 8 p.m. Monday, March 25. Admission is $3. Call 293-6998 for more information.
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