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Friday, June 19, 2015

6 Concerts to Catch This Weekend

Concert Preview

Posted By on Fri, Jun 19, 2015 at 2:15 PM

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FRIDAY, JUNE 19

Travis Haddix Blues Band


A staple in the Cleveland blues scene — and in the American music circuit writ large — Travis “Moonchild” Haddix has always brought the heat to the stage. He also surround himself with great musicians — like a tight, tight brass section. What he has always done so well has been his steady merger of classic blues structures with smooth R&B-style singing. He makes the blues accessible to anyone willing to listen and, inevitably, dance. And having been playing guitar since he was 7, the dude can tear it up quite nicely. He once told a music writer, “I am the best that I can be, and since no one else can be me, there’s none better.” Right on. (Eric Sandy), 8 p.m., $7. Music Box Supper Club.


Heartless Bastards

Formed back in 2003, Heartless Bastards emerged from the Dayton-based garage rock act Shesus, a band that featured Wennerstrom and drummer Dave Colvin. The two split off to form Heartless Bastards and with a little help from Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney, a fan of the band who passed their demo on to the folks at Fat Possum, the group had a record deal within a year or two of forming. Its debut came out in 2005 and though it’s gone through a handful of lineup changes, it’s remained a constant on the indie rock circuit and has evolved with each album. For its latest effort, Restless Ones, it holed up at El Paso’s Sonic Ranch for a 10-day stretch to write and record the songs. Produced by Grammy-winning producer John Congleton (St. Vincent, Angel Olsen, Swans), the album puts Wennerstrom’s howling voice up front in the mix and keeps the band’s raw energy intact on songs such as the distortion heavy “Wind Up Bird” and the bluesy “Eastern Wind.” (Jeff Niesel), 9 p.m., $16 ADV, $18 DOS. Grog Shop.

SATURDAY, JUNE 20

The Clarks


For nearly 25 years, The Clarks have sustained a career as a better-than-average alt-rock act that’s innocuous enough for a first date. At their peak a few years back, the group could pack mid-sized venues throughout the region (and they regularly played here in town to capacity crowds at the now-shuttered Odeon). Their popularity has declined some, but the guys are still at it, as well they should be. Singer-guitarist Scott Blasey has a raspy voice that’s equally suited to country and rock, and the band often successfully mixes the two genres together. (Niesel), 8:30 p.m., $18 ADV, $20 DOS. Grog Shop.

Lou Gramm

As the voice of Foreigner, singer Lou Gramm racked up an impressive 16 Top 40 hits in the ’70s and ’80s, including the number one smash, “I Want To Know What Love Is,” in 1985. He’ll be back in town tonight at Hard Rock Live for a co-headlining performance with Mickey Thomas of Starship, with the proceeds from the evening’s performance going to benefit the Akron Children’s Hospital. (Matt Wardlaw) 7 p.m. Hard Rock Rocksino.

Lady Antebellum

One of country’s biggest acts, Lady Antebellum kicked off its Take Me Downtown Tour last year after playing live from Central Park in New York as part of Good Morning America’s summer concert series. Propelled by "Bartender," the single from last year's 747, the tour was a huge hit. "Bartender" is a catchy pop number that, despite a dominant banjo riff, has more in common with Katy Perry than Dolly Parton. And when the band’s Hillary Scott sings, “What I really need now is a double shot of crown,” you can bet members of the capacity crowd that will be at Blossom for this gig will hoist their drinks in the air in unison as a toast of sorts to Blossom’s country-heavy concert schedule. (Niesel), 7 p.m., $31.50-$61.25. Blossom.

Zach Deputy

Known for his tangles of guitar melodies looping across themselves, Zach Deputy is that unique musician who comes off sounding like he’s actually several musicians in one body. His beachy guitar work blends into a melange of hip-hop beats, dancehall and neo-soul. Check out his bandcamp page for live sets from the past few years; you’ll gather a sense that Deputy’s a fun-loving cat who laces his dedication to his instruments with wit and personal savvy. He has described his sound as “island-infused drum ‘n' bass gospel ninja soul.” We like to think of it as the soundtrack to a backyard party where the steaks are rubbed with kief and the sun is shining oh so warmly. (Sandy), 9 p.m., $12 ADV, $15 DOS. Beachland Ballroom.

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