Music Tonight: This is the start of one of the more jam-packed music weekends of the summer, with numerous festivals (Feywill, Swinefest, Ohmstead, Taste of Blue Ash, Whispering Beard) competing with some quality club shows, concerts at larger venues and more. First up, a look at the less local-music-centric lineup for Swinefest and the always interesting bookings for Taste of Blue Ash.
• Swinefest is an annual "music and arts festival" that this year (its fourth) is being held at the Clermont County Fairgrounds. A handful of local acts (from cover bands like Livid and 3 Day Rule to successful Pop group Blessid Union of Souls) will join touring bands like Saving Abel, Hot Action Cop and the Sublime tribute band, Badfish, for the two-day affair which kicks off today at noon and continues tomorrow with an 11:15 a.m. start. Besides music, the fest offers an array of other actives and entertainment, from a pig roast, comedy performances, food vendors and art exhibitions to MMA fights and wet t-shirt contests. Sounds like a lot of testosterone!
Click here for tickets, directions and more info. Here's the full schedule:
12 p.m. The Billy Rock Band
3 p.m. Specyphi
4:15 p.m. Hot Action Cop
6 p.m. Scotty Don’t
7 p.m. IFL MMA Fights
10 p.m. Badfish
12 a.m. Comedy
1 a.m. Wet T-Shirt Contest
11:15 a.m. One Horse
12:45 p.m. Mike Perkins
2:15 p.m. Livid
3:45 p.m. 3 Day Rule
5:15 p.m. Subvinyl
6:30 p.m. Almost Kings
7:45 p.m. Blessid Union of Souls
9:15 p.m. Fabulous Miss Wendy
10:30 p.m. Saving Abel
12 a.m. Comedy
1 a.m. Wet T-Shirt Contest
• The neighborhood food fest Taste of Blue Ash has always presented an interesting array of nostalgia acts over the years — I fondly remember watching Chuck Berry stumble through a set several years back. This year's Taste — running Friday-Sunday and centered around Blue Ash Towne Square — has another interesting collection of artists performing. Tonight's headliners are Pat Benatar and her husband/guitarist Neil Giraldo, who take the stage at 9 p.m., while tomorrow big-name is REO Speedwagon (9 p.m.) and Saturday it's kinda-CCR band Creedence Clearwater Revisited (7:30 p.m.), featuring original members Doug Clifford and Stu Cook. Taste of Blue Ash is a free event. For the full schedule (which includes a few local artists, including Tracy Walker and Robin Lacy) and most everything you need to know about the festival, click here.
• A trio of great local, often rocking', roots-oriented band play a free show at the Northside Tavern tonight. The show opens with a performance by The Hiders at around 9:30 p.m. The band's Billy Alletzhauser says he, Beth Harris and Sylvia Mitchell will perform an acoustic set where they'll try out a handful of new Hiders tunes. The show also features Maurice Mattei and The Tempers, fresh off the release of their latest album, Strum & Drag. (Check out the music video for the album's "Take Your Hands Off My Baby" below and find more music, video, lyrics and art at mmattei.com.)
Rounding out the bill is The Kentucky Struts, whose unique album project is nearing its final phase (read more here). The Indie/Country/Rock crew has been releasing a track once a month from the completed album, which will be issued in full at the end of the year. Another cool element of "The Year of the Horse" project is that the band commissioned various visual artists to create artwork for each song. Tonight at the Tavern, the Struts will have prints of the equestrian-themed works and they'll also auction off a pair of nicely framed prints. Some of the proceeds raised through the project are being donated to the rescue organization, Speak Up For Horses.
• Cool show at Junker's Tavern in Northside tonight. Local rockers Two Headed Dog will be joined by a reunited robthebank, a punchy, poppy Dayton band that hasn't been playing since at least the early ’00s. The group features longtime Dayton musician and Guided By Voices member Nate Farley (guitars vocals), fantastic former Shesus vocalist Heather Newkirk, Craig Nichols (original Shesus drummer who also has played with Omatic and GBV) and Duane Hart, who played with Nichols in GBV's Mitch Mitchell's band Terrifying Experience. This show appears to be more than a one-off — RTB has posted new material (check it here) and future dates are being planned. Tonight's Junker's show is free and starts around 10 p.m.
• Don't forget that tonight's free MidPoint Indie Summer Series show on Fountain Square is the last time you'll be able to purchase discounted MidPoint passes. The three-day wristbands will run you $39 tonight; after that, you'll have to pay $49. The penultimate Indie Summer show features excellent local, progressive Indie Pop group The Sleeping Sea, opening things up at 7 p.m. Next on the bill is Canon Blue, the Orchestral Pop project of singer/songwriter Daniel James, who recently signed with the label Temporary Residence. Headlining is ever-evolving Midwestern Indie faces Margot & the Nuclear So & So's (read more here).
Here are recent clips from all three groups:
(Leave your suggestions/promote yourself or your favorites by telling everyone about your favorite music event recommendations for the day in the comments below.)
Momentous Happenings in Music History for Aug. 26
On this day in 2003, Rolling Stone published a special issue counting down "The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time." Like all such lists, the magazines rankings ruffled feathers and was criticized for everything from being too American-oriented (Eric Clapton, Keith Richards and Jimmy Page are the only Brits in the Top 10) to low placements (Eddie Van Halen at No. 70?), high placements (Kurt Cobain at No. 12?) and exclusions like Prince, who failed to make the Top 100 (but runs rings around Cobain and some of the others).
Here's Prince making his case for not only making the list, but deserving a spot somewhere in the Top 40, at least.
Born This Day: Musically-inclined people sharing an Aug. 26 birthday include Prog Rock icon (with the band Hawkwind) Nik Turner (1940); Velvet Underground drummer Maureen Tucker (1944); modern Jazz hero Branford Marsalis (1960); Pop star Casandra Ventura, better known as Cassie (1986); and half of the duo Ashford and Simpson (where she partnered with husband Nick Ashford, who passed away a few days ago), Valerie Simpson (1946).
Valerie's probably not having the best 65th birthday today, so here's a tribute and tip of the hat from better days.