I know it’s a ways off, but if you want to save a little coin now is the time…
The Wakarusa Festival, May 31st – June 3rd in beautiful Ozark, Arkansas, has been selling tickets at a breakneck pace. That’s no real surprise, especially for anyone that’s made the four hour journey down to Mulberry Mountain before.
The venue is spacious, amenities are plentiful, and there’s even a really nice river that you can swim in to cool off (and maybe even bathe your filthy carcass).
The $149 price for Early Bird tickets is only good thru this Sunday and it gets you full access to the festival. Camping passes must be purchased seperately, and they range in price from $29 – $99 depending on where you want to throw your tent or RV down.
And if you do make it down, keep an eye out for me and my KCC crew. I’ll be the guy dressed like Larry Bird.
Here’s the link for Wakarusa’s ticketing: http://wakarusa.com/2012/tickets.asp
On to this week’s picks…
Friday, February 10th
William Elliott Whitmore at the Granada in Lawrence
The Granada has been the place to be the last few weeks. And it looks like they’re not letting up anytime soon with a stellar lineup of artists on the way.
This Friday will be no different as William Elliott Whitmore rolls into town with his roots-blues-folk thing and a voice that could make you cry just reading the news. His real strength lies in his live shows as he strums away on the banjo and guitar.
But he’s not just some sensitive troubadour. Nope, he’s definitely part of the hard core punk scene that appeals to varied audiences across lines that you wouldn’t expect. For instance, a buddy of mine who is into hard metal and screamo just loves this guy and never misses him when he’s in town. Go figure.
Also on the bill is Lawrence’s favorite old timey, mustachioed duo, Drakar Sauna.
Saturday, February 11th
Craig Finn at the RecordBar in KC
Craig Finn is the front man for The Hold Steady, the Brooklyn-based quirky, rocking, storytelling band that pens memorable songs in the vein of the Boss mixed with Hüsker Dü. Though The Hold Steady only formed in 2004-ish, they received critical praise early on, even snatching Blender’s 2006’s Band of the Year.
Finn just put out a solo album called Clear Heart Full Eyes that is a little less rockin’ than his full band’s efforts, though he sticks with his trademark storytelling style that packs tons of details into weirdly phrased verses and choruses.
"I wanted to do something with a little more storytelling and a lot less volume," he explained recently to the AV Club’s Steven Hyden. "[The songs are] simpler and came from a much softer, quieter place. I don’t think it’s what The Hold Steady does, or what the guys in the band would be interested in doing. So it definitely seemed like my own thing, a solo thing."
Sunday, February 12th
moe. at Liberty Hall in Lawrence
Damn! moe. has been around since what, 1989? These guys rose to prominence at the height of the jamband craze of the late 90s, early 2000s, and were mentioned alongside bands like Phish, Widespread Panic, and String Cheese Incident. Though moe. always seemed a little more rootsy than those guys, save maybe Widespread’s southern roots jams. They’ve played Bonnaroo something like five times, High Sierra Fest, 10,000 Lakes, Lollapalooza, and Jazzfest.
They’ve got a brand new album that dropped a week ago called What Happened to the LA-LA’s. Recently they talked to The Guitar Squid about how they get through their live shows without really knowing what the hell they’re doing:
"There are a lot of things that we do and that we know how to do based on playing together for so long," explained guitarist Chuck Garvey. "We have some little vignettes that all of a sudden when one person quotes it we all start playing it. There are certain points when we are playing where we know what we are doing and other times when we have no control over it whatsoever and everyone just has to keep their ears open. It’s not ESP, but sometimes when everyone is tuned into what the right thing is, we try and foster that as much as possible."