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Friday, December 3, 2010

Southern Culture on the Skids, Jon Lindsay and Bonnie Prince Billy tonight (Dec. 3)

Posted By on Fri, Dec 3, 2010 at 9:47 AM

SOUTHERN CULTURE ON THE SKIDS On its latest, The Kudzu Ranch, guitarist Rick Miller, bassist Mary Huff and drummer Dave Hartman chill out a bit with the hillbilly schtick in favor of laying waste to some more traditional-sounding tonk. And while the band's shows' inevitable antics are a bit more sterile now than in the past (throw fried chicken and 'nanner pudding at an audience on a regular basis and you tend to get a reputation for it), the music certainly isn't — it's a solid shot of corn(y) liquor that won't fail to loosen your inhibitions. $15-$18, Visulite Theatre, www.visulite.com (Timothy C. Davis)

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JON LINDSAY There are a couple of different ways folk pen pop music. There's the rah-rah, bobbysox school, wherein the hard rain a-never-falls and the milk never sours, and then there's what the best of the breed do, and Jon Lindsay does: craft music of equal parts sweat and sweet, heart and hard times. His recent Escape From Plaza-Midwood is as intricately crafted as you'd expect from a long-promised release from a self-proclaimed studio rat, but never seems anything approaching overwrought: the harmonies swell where you'd expect, leaning sheets of beats and keys illuminate oaken acoustic guitar, and laugh lines miraculously appear on the face of things when the mood threatens to tilt into gameoversville. Lindsay, who is returning home from a tour that's recently taken him to music centers New York, Nashville and Los Angeles, is an admirable chronicler of both characters and character, lending the whole production a bite-size Bloomsday feel. With Stephaniesid, The Tomahawks. $8, Snug Harbor, www.snugrock.com (Davis)

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BONNIE PRINCE BILLY Sure he's an oddball, but a mighty hip one at that. And Will Oldham, aka Bonnie Prince Billy, is more down to earth than his persona may appear. His muse has graced different monikers, Palace Music, Palace Brothers, et al, but it's not all gloom, as the emotive songcrafter can also be downright corky. All eccentricities aside, Oldham/Billy is an American songwriting treasure. Find a more unnerving song than "I See a Darkness" at your own peril. With the Babblers. $20, Neighborhood Theatre, www.neighborhoodtheatre.com (Samir Shukla)

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