Thursday, June 13, 2019

VIDEO PREVIEW: Jam Sandwich at Mayo Island, Saturday, June 15

Posted By on Thu, Jun 13, 2019 at 4:00 AM

Hey, fans of jammy, feel-good music: This Saturday's weather is looking nice, about 84 degrees or so and slightly cloudy.

If you're looking for someplace to hang outside and hear a full-day of songs performed live, you should probably know about Jam Sandwich (Fresh Baked Edition, hmm) at Mayo Island featuring bands all day, food vendors and Strangeways beer for sale with craft cocktails from Belle Isle Craft Spirits.

The all-day event runs from noon to 10 p.m at 501 S. 14th Street and costs $30 in advance or $40 at the gate.

Is hacky sack still a thing? Might be good to bring one, or at least a frisbee. Here's your lineup, featuring some local bands and some from out of town, with videos included so you can see what you're getting.


Noon: The Folly

12:45 p.m.: The Dharma Bombs

1:45 p.m.: Little Bird

2:45 p.m.: Little Stranger

3:45 p.m.: Palm Palm

5 p.m.: Travers Brothership

6:30 p.m.: Stoop Kids

8:30 p.m.: The Vegebonds

9:30 p.m.: Star Kitchen with Marc Brownstein of the Disco Biscuits

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Bob Mould Show Announced For Broadberry, Sept. 25

Hear his new cover of the Buzzcocks' "I Don't Mind."

Posted By on Tue, Jun 11, 2019 at 4:00 AM

Singer and songwriter Bob Mould, the frontman from legendary Minnesota punk trio Husker Du, will be bringing his solo tour to the Broadberry on Wednesday, Sept. 25. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 day of show, with music starting at 8 p.m.

Austin-based, alt.country songwriter Will Johnson will open the show. Johnson is the lead singer for the band Centro-matic and South San Gabriel and has performed on Monsters of Folk and as part of the Undertow Orchestra.

It's been awhile since Mould has played Richmond, but Husker Du was known for its loud, incendiary shows at venues like Rockitz back in the mid-80s.

From the sessions for his new record, "Sunshine Rock," a special cover of a classic Buzzcocks track:

Monday, June 10, 2019

InLight Richmond To Be Held in Chimborazo Park, Nov. 15-16

Posted By on Mon, Jun 10, 2019 at 4:00 AM

The free event utilizes light-based art and performances while offering audiences the chance to see public art outdoors, with performances, sculpture, video and interactive projects lighting up the night. Large crowds have been known to venture out for this photogenic event.

Here's more from the press release desk:

InLight 2019 will take place at Chimborazo Park in the Church Hill neighborhood of Richmond. Artists are invited to propose projects that critically engage with the social and geographic history of this site. Two key moments in the park’s history include being the location of the largest Confederate military hospital during the Civil War and following Emancipation, hosting a Freedmen’s community for formerly enslaved African-Americans. 1708 seeks artists and projects that respond to, elaborate on, and propose new ways of understanding these complex histories.

For more details about InLight 2019 and to submit an entry, visit 1708gallery.org.

Friday, June 7, 2019

PICK: The Ar-Kaics, Big No, Toward Space and Slump at Hardywood Brewery, Friday, June 7

Posted By on Fri, Jun 7, 2019 at 4:00 AM

Sadly, shows at Hardywood Park Craft Brewery in Richmond seem few and far between these days. So come out and show your support for this solid bill of free music with some strong local talent on tap.

Dig! Records presents an all-ages bill that starts at 5 p.m. and features the garage punk of the Ar-kaics (we're not sure of the order, but its probably the reverse of this below):

Plus the accomplished songwriting and lovely, dark Nick Cave/Lynchian beauty of Big No, led by couple Nathan Grice and Heather Jerabeck:

Another garage-punk band that's been making waves with steady touring, Toward Space:

And a band we haven't seen yet, but whose bandcamp page sounds nice (not to mention that EP cover art, cool):

Thursday, June 6, 2019

PICK: Art Omelet at the Gellman Room in the Richmond Public Library

Posted By on Thu, Jun 6, 2019 at 4:00 AM

Art Omelet, an installation of works inspired by, and not infrequently created during, the long-running Breakfast Cabaret at Southside Coffee and Tea opens this Friday at the Gelman Room in the Richmond Library. Musical accompaniment will be provided, appropriately, by the Breakfast Cabaret band.

It is one of Richmond’s oddest and most endearing communal rituals, hosted every Friday morning at the Southside Crossroads Coffee and Tea by accordionist Barry Bless and singer/dancer Twila Jane Sikorsky. They lead a shifting but remarkably stable group musicians, spiced with the odd guest side player or neighborhood interloper. The music is a revolution-tinged mix of French café, Russian melodies, Kurt Weil romantic decadence, and spritely originals. By the time you realize that a lot of the charm comes from seeing the same capable band playing the same songs to the same audience, you are part of the cadre — familiarity breeds content.

The Art Omelet exhibition celebrates Cabaret regulars, photographer Jay Paul, and painter/graphic artists Chris Pool and Kim Young. It also features work created by others during one of the 185 editions of the weekly event. (Friday morning's show will be the 186th, and a set to accompany the opening of the 187th. But who is counting?)

Musical guests for the Friday evening’s performance are Jonathan Greenburg and Ezra Freeman. Also on the bill, a “melodramatic schmaltz-off” and a reading apparently related to Sikorsky’s long-germinating “Cowgirl” project. Expect a lot of primary colors and references to the weekly fashion guidelines from Cabaret style guru Ronald Lee. The event prompt: “Your Favorite/Finest Breakfast Cabaret Outfit/Costume.”

It shouldn’t be hard to pick the regulars out.

The event is Friday, June 7 from 7 to 8:30 p.m.. The actual art show runs through July 30.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Richmond Folk Fest Announces First Ten Artists for 15th Anniversary

Posted By on Tue, Jun 4, 2019 at 1:00 AM

This year the popular Richmond Folk Festival is celebrating its 15th anniversary bringing diverse global sounds to the city's historic downtown riverfront. The free, three-day event to be held Oct. 11-13 has been known to draw over 200,000 people for the weekend.

RFF organizers do need volunteers and registration is now open. Those who sign up four or more to volunteer for the beer truck or bucket brigade will be rewarded with cool RFF swag, according to Kelly Vance of the Vance Agency. You can learn more about volunteering here.

Today, organizers announced the first 10 artists for this year's fest. It's a diverse opening salvo featuring everything from real deal Texas honky tonk to Tuareg guitar and the return of Tuvan throat singing! So without further adieu, here you go:

Bombino(Tuareg guitar)

Agadez, Niger

Dale Watson (honky-tonk and country)

Austin, Texas

Panfilo’s Güera(Tejano conjunto fiddle)

San Antonio, Texas

Super Chikan(Delta blues)

Clarksdale, Mississippi


BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet (Cajun)

From Lafayette,Louisiana

The Garifuna Collective(Garifuna)


Huun-Huur-Tu (Tuvan throat-singing)

Republic of Tuva (Russian Federation)

Iberi Choir(Georgian polyphonic singing)

Tbilisi, Georgia

Kevin Doyle & Friends(Irish step dance and music)

Barrington, Rhode Island

Lonesome River Band(bluegrass)

Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee

And here's more from the press release:

“There was a time when many people questioned whether such a large-scale, FREE festival like this could be successful in Richmond for the long term,” said Lisa Sims, Venture Richmond Executive Director. “But our community has nurtured this event in ways that even the most optimistic of us couldn’t have predicted 15 years ago. There’s no end to our gratitude for the sponsors, contributors, and volunteers who make the festival happen year in and year out, rain or shine. The dedication of so many is stunning.”

Sunday, June 2, 2019

AUDIO: Richmond Rocker Valient Himself Releases Cover of Roky Erickson

Also offers Gay-Fil-A Sundays at his restaurant, Cobra Cabana.

Posted By on Sun, Jun 2, 2019 at 4:00 AM

A local rocker and the owner of Carver neighborhood restaurant, Cobra Cabana, has released a heartfelt cover version of "I Walked With A Zombie," a classic track by Texas psych rock pioneer, Roky Erickson, who passed away last Friday at 71.

A colorful, well-liked character, Herbie Abernathy, aka Valient Himself, is known for his frontman work with the hard rock band, Valient Thorr. He posted the Erickson song on bandcamp noting that it was recorded in Feb. 2018 in Austin, Texas with another band, Austin's Riverboat Gamblers. Abernathy added in the post that he had been waiting to put it out, but the time felt right considering Erickson's recent passing.

Proceeds from the song will go to an Austin-based mental health organization. This is fitting because Erickson was once subjected to electro-shock treatment at Rusk State Hospital after facing a decade in prison for an arrest in the late 1960s stemming from a single joint of marijuana. Often described as an acid casualty, Erickson suffered from paranoid schizophrenia for much of his adult life, but always managed to stay true to his musical muse and had been performing more over the past decade with different young groups backing him. He found many supporters, including Henry Rollins, who allegedly bought him a new set of teeth.

Abernathy provided Style with more details on how the track came to be and how he feels about the influence of Erickson's music:

So, back in 1998 I had a band called Lo-Fi Conspiracy. Someone somewhere told me I sounded like Roky Erickson or Jeffery Lee Pierce singing for the Dead Kennedys. So I looked up who those guys were.

I knew of 13th Floor Elevators but at 18 hadn’t discovered Roky’s story or solo career. I first got ahold of a Halloween live tape he had recorded somewhere that still has the best version of "Bloody Hammer" I’ve ever heard. Then we got into all of it from there. "Two-Headed Dog"?! I should’ve recorded THAT song, but we literally had less than an hour to throw these couple jams together last year and take advantage of this opportunity to record that this man had offered us. That kind of became a challenge. Do we have all the parts? Can you guys meet me? Can we pull this off in less than 12 hours notice? Anyway.

I saw him with the Black Angels backing him in 2012 at Jazz Fest in New Orleans. It was incredible. He literally played every song I wanted to hear. So many creepy songs but also just as many love songs. My wife and I love “Anthem (I promise)”. He was a gentle soul. I also got to see him twice in Austin at his semi regular SXSW Ice Cream Picnic. Billy Gibbons got up and jammed with him. Valient Thorr was down there and we were super psyched because that was just after the big documentary came out and he finally started gigging again. I hope someone enjoys this 1/100th as much as I do when I hear Roky wail it through the night.

Rest In Peace Roky, and May your jams keep blaring forever.

In other news related to Abernathy's restaurant, Cobra Cabana is now offering Gay-Fil-A Sundays, featuring a chicken sando, waffle fries and poly sauce. Ten percent of proceeds will go to local LGBTQIA non-profit, Side by Side. So, if you don't like supporting certain chain restaurants, but still love you some chicken sandwiches, Valient Himself has got you covered. Props to that man.

Below, the trailer for the 2005 music documentary, "You're Gonna Miss Me," about Erickson's life:

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

VCU School of the Arts Professor Earns Third Tony Nomination

Posted By on Wed, May 29, 2019 at 4:00 AM

VCU School of the Arts Professor Toni-Leslie James has earned her third nomination for costume design in the play “Bernhardt/Hamlet.”

James has taught at VCU for 12 years. This is her second Tony nomination in three years and the third of her career, according to a press release from the school.

“To be recognized for something you’ve put your heart and soul into is an accomplishment in itself, whether we take home the award or not,” James said in the release. “I’m grateful to have the opportunity to work with such talented individuals to help bring these designs to life. Costumes play such an important role for the actors, in finding the identity of their characters, and I’m honored to help craft the garments that make that happen.”

The play is set in the 1800s and features everything from casual wear to evening gowns, all handcrafted by James and her team (who rented some garments from VCU and festivals).

Other nominees this year in her category include: Rob Howell for “The Ferryman,” Clint Ramos for “Torch Song” and Ann Roth, who was nominated for “Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus” and “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

The play “Bernhardt/Hamlet” ran at the American Airlines Theatre from Aug. 31 to Nov. 18 last year, according to the release. You can watch the 73rd annual Tony Awards ceremony on Sunday, June 9 on CBS at 8 p.m. EST.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Byrd Theatre Foundation Receives Largest Donation Ever, $500,000, from the Reinhart Family

Posted By on Wed, May 8, 2019 at 4:00 AM

Fans of the historic Byrd Theatre rejoice! The Reinhart family recently provided a $500,000 gift to the Byrd Theatre Foundation, the largest gift in the Foundation's history. For those of us who consider this cinema jewel to be one of the most beautiful places in Richmond, this is wonderful news.

According to a press release: "The gift will be used to reduce the mortgage on the Theatre; to establish an opportunity fund to develop more mission-based programming; and to expand access, audience and capacity in human resources over time – all part of Phase Two initiatives underway. Phase Two will capitalize on the Byrd as an experience, an historic and cultural resource, and as a museum of cinema, based on its unique collection of historic film equipment, projectors and the Wurlitzer organ. To launch the effort, The Mary Morton Parsons Foundation has awarded the Byrd a $250,000 Challenge grant."

The Foundation will host a formal dedication of the Reinhart Auditorium at the Byrd Theatre, on Thursday, May 9, according to the release. The dedication is part of a year-long celebration of the Byrd’s 90th anniversary.

“The entire community will benefit from this extraordinary investment in Richmond’s beloved and historic movie palace," said Ted Haynes, President of the Board of Directors in the release. "The Reinhart family was inspired by the progress on preservation and programs, and by the vision and strategic plan for the Byrd to become a major film literacy center.”

Here's more from the release:

The Byrd Theatre Foundation is also expanding partnerships with universities, film networks and other community business partners to develop additional educational and enriching film series. A total of $2.5 million is estimated for Phase Two enhancements. Phase One raised $1.5 million for a new roof, major systems upgrades, new center seats and other improvements.

The mission of the organization is to expand the big screen experience, celebrate the art of cinema and preserve Virginia’s grand motion picture palace, with a vision to elevate the Byrd’s landmark position among American theaters as a center for film that continues to provide the broadest possible public access to exceptional cinematic experiences.

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

PICK: The Hustle Season Podcast Live at the Firehouse Theater, May 2

Posted By on Tue, Apr 30, 2019 at 4:00 AM

“The Hustle Season” podcast whips through topics like a severed firehose, you can’t tell where it’s going but you know in the end everything is going to get covered.

At heart, it’s an informal, RVA-centric immersion in pop culture, food, the arts, laden with in-jokes and looping explorations of whatever subject bubbles to the surface. In other words, it’s a hangout conversation, albeit one between four people deeply embedded in the local music scene. They are probably the only podcast that could also form a credible band.

Kelli Strawbridge drums with a wide range of bands, but he is best known as the James Brown avatar in The Big Payback. Reggie Pace, co-leader of NoBS! Brass Band is one of the foremost ambassadors for the local scene. Bassist Gabe Santamaria lays down the basslines for Dance Candy and the Sam Reed Syndicate in addition to leading The Flavor Product. James Seretis is a jazz guitarist turned custom audio entrepreneur. The core group is frequently augmented with a wildcard guest musician from the local scene.

It’s the creative-turned-cool kids table, and everybody can pull up a chair (or sit close anyway) when they do the show live at the Firehouse, 7:30 p.m. on May 2nd. Guest musician Chance Fischer gets a seat on the stage. Tickets are $10 Advance, $15 day of the show.

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