Funky Bottomline

Louisiana soul and Nashville showmanship mark the excellent performances that Josh Garrett & The Bottomline put on for fans. Garrett hails from Houma, La., also the birthplace of Tab Benoit. Fans of Benoit and Tommy Castro should dig this horn-driven band that mixes funk, blues, R&B and zydeco. Fronting the band, Garrett has the guitar finesse, rich vocal chops and ability to mix original material with inventive takes on traditional tunes that mark a rising star. The band features two sharp horn players and is a polished unit that likes to party, working the crowd with high-energy and a love for the music that’s infectious. Josh Garrett & The Bottomline makes its Zoo Bar debut Wednesday, Nov. 3, 6-9 p.m. The band returns to The New Lift Lounge where they’re building an enthusiastic following. Join the party at The Lift Thursday, Nov. 4, 5:30-8:30 p.m. Blues on Grand Closes Des Moines, Iowa, blues club Blues on Grand held its last hurrah Saturday, Oct. 23. The club took to the street for a closing festival that included some of the local bands that had called the downtown club home. Manager Jeff Wagner announced the closing a couple of months back, citing low attendance at shows as the prime reason. Several online bloggers suggested that Iowa’s smoking ban had much to do with the dwindling attendance. Regardless, the closing of this club will leave touring bands with one less regular stop on the blues highway, which will doubtless impact tours through the Midwest for many bands. Blues on Grand hosted many of the same bands that appear at The New Lift Lounge and Lincoln’s Zoo Bar. The Des Moines club was a great stop for bands traveling from Chicago or Minneapolis to Omaha, Lincoln or Kansas City. The location had a longer history as a blues venue but opened its doors as Blues on Grand in 1999. The club was recognized by the national Blues Foundation in 2002 with its Keeping the Blues Alive award for Best Blues Club in the country. This is troubling news from an area where the Central Iowa Blues Society has been one of the most active in the Midwest region. If fans don’t support the rich local offerings we currently enjoy, there’s no incentive for promoters to continue to book these artists. So if you regularly get out to support live music, keep doing it. If you keep meaning to get out and see some live music, don’t wait. The Omaha and Lincoln scenes will only remain vibrant if people keep showing up to support the venues, bands and touring acts. 1200 Club Season Begins Holland Performing Arts Center’s 1200 Club space opens its fall season this week. This is the smaller, limited-seating venue in the Holland, named for its club-like setting. There’s full, cash-bar service available. The venue opens for the fall with the return of actor Jeff Daniels Wednesday, Nov. 3. Daniels kicked off the opening of the space several years ago. The Chicago Blues Reunion Band plays Thursday, Nov. 4, and the swinging sounds of the Cherry Poppin’ Daddies are Friday, Nov. 5. The Chicago Blues Reunion Band is billed as “an all-star collaboration of Chicago music legends who defined the sound of their generation in the 1960s” when Chicago was a hotbed of the blues revival. Harmonica man and vocalist Corky Siegel, who has appeared at the 1200 Club before, is back with this band that also includes Barry Goldberg (organ), Nick “The Greek” Gravenites (vocals/guitar), Harvey “The Snake” Mandel (guitar), Rick Reed (bass) and Gary Mallabar (drums). Find out more about the band at chamberblues.com/projects_cbr.html. Hot Notes Don’t forget that Austin honky-tonk band Horse Opera makes their Omaha debut at The Lift Thursday, Oct. 28. Rave-up Lincoln roots-rockers the Tijuana Gigolos will open the show at 5 p.m. Horse Opera goes on at 7 p.m. Though this is an Americana show, Lift owner Terry O’Halloran is offering free admission to Blues Society members to encourage them to check out the music. The Lift hosts the Blues Society of Omaha’s Halloween party Halloween night, Sunday, Oct. 31. Costumes are encouraged as Kansas City’s Nace Brothers entertain at 5:30 p.m. with their roots-rock music followed by the blues-rock of Kris Lager Band at 9 p.m. Lincoln’s Zoo Bar celebrates Halloween weekend with long-time favorites The Bel Airs Friday and Saturday, Oct. 29 and 30. Popular local act 112 North Duck gigs at McKenna’s Friday, Oct. 29. Check omahablues.com or slamomaha.com schedules for complete listings of blues, roots and rock music happening around the metro this weekend. Son of 76 & The Watchmen, fronted by Reader contributor Josh Hoyer, celebrate Halloween at Harrah's Stir nightclub, Oct. 30, 9 p.m.

posted at 12:26 pm
on Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

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