Christmas With a Twang
Every two years, Bill Gaither and his friends come to town. They sing for the nice and naughty, and everyone gets the same gifts of country gospel and celebration. Gaither's holiday concerts, which are called "homecomings," have grown from an informal gathering of musicians in Nashville to a touring juggernaut, topping industry lists for most concert tickets sold worldwide. On Gaither's list this year is the Gaither Vocal Band, Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, Jeff & Sheri Easter, Lynda Randle, Ivan Parker, The Isaacs and others. Gaither and the gang perform Friday, Dec. 14, at 7 p.m. at Richmond Coliseum. $20.50-$37.50. Call 262-8100 or visit www.ticketmaster.com. Craig Belcher
Once She Went Green, She Never Went Back
While pop singers and movie stars attempt to pile on the eco-bandwagon (which is probably a hybrid), taking a more earth-conscious approach to life is starting to look like a fad, like diminutive dogs or imported orphans. For Nashville-based singer-songwriter Adrienne Young, "going green" is more than a fashionable phrase. In 2003, she packaged her CD of bluegrass and folk songs ("Plow to the End of the Row") with a packet of wildflower seeds, a move that earned her a Grammy nomination for best packaging. A year later, she became the spokeswoman for FoodRoutes Network, an organization that advocates the purchase of locally grown foods. Young doesn't just talk about sustainable agriculture, however; she sings about it and makes it entertaining. Her latest release is "Room to Grow," and it's likely to take root with the audience at Ashland Coffee & Tea Thursday, Dec 13. $16-$21. 798-1702. C.B.
Americana the Beautiful
Charlottesville's Hackensaw Boys are the sawed-off next generation of Americana music-makers. Their music respects the traditional aspects of the bluegrass and old-time music and envelops it with a punk-rock ethic. It's a country concoction you aren't likely to come across anywhere else. The six-man string band's latest effort, "Look Out," was released this summer. The boys from Hackensaw chop it with Hoots & Hellmouth and David Shultz and the Skyline at Toad's Place Thursday, Dec. 13, at 9 p.m. $5-$10. 648-TOAD. C.B.
Oh My Goth!
When Melora Creager created the electric cello choir Rasputina 10 years ago using a classified ad, she had one mantra: No boys and no guitars. The trio, obsessed with such Victorian attire as bloomers, corsets and hoopskirts, had a breakthrough hit, "Transylvania Concubine." But over the years, their music as well as fashion evolved, and the group managed to become a permanent aberration in mainstream music. With haunting lyrics that reference everything from Bin Laden to child soldiers, the group's newest album, "Oh Perilous World," meets the old melodies of classic Rasputina tied with the new beats of drummer Jonathon TeBeest. Their shows are ghostly recitals in which the pale apparitions shake your hand after the ambient sounds of the twisted performance are over. Rasputina performs with the Mathematicans and a quartet of local talent known as Now Sleepyhead Wednesday, Dec. 12, at 7 p.m. at Alley Katz. $10-$12. 643-2816. Elizabeth KincaidClick here for more Calendar Events