Take Me to the River Allstars
7:00 p.m., Thursday, May 19th
Few cities on earth can compete with Memphis and New Orleans when it comes to producing original genre-defining music. On Thursdays, those two words will collide (yet again) in a showcase featuring some true heavy hitters from each respective city. In the NOLA corner, we’ve got Ivan and Ian Neville, who admirably carry on the torch of their iconic musical family; jam bander extraordinaire Robert Mercurio of Galactic; and funk and R&B master Jon Clearly. Memphis will be represented by none other than the Hi Rhythm Section, who have expertly backed everyone from Al Green to Cat Power to John Mayer. In short, you won’t want to miss this meeting of musical minds.
5:00 p.m, Friday, May 20th
Germantown Performing Arts Center- Local Music in The Grove
Local favorite singer-songwriter and bass player Amy Lavere has been releasing original music for over 15 years. The folk and Americana artist juxtaposes her sweet and often cooing vocals with energetic stage presence, and always stellar accompaniment. Husband and legendary musician, Will Sexton, is almost always on stage with her these days offering a masculine balance to her femme. The Grove at Germantown Performing Arts Center presents this show early and outdoors to appeal to all ages! Food trucks, drink specials, and good times will be had.
7:30 P.M., Friday, May 20th
The Green Room At Crosstown Arts
Grammy-winning Pennsylvanian Ed Gerhard hails from the finest of American fingerstyle and lap steel guitar traditions, though his subtle depth of tone and nuance of feel bring more to mind than just the intimidating shadows of Fahey and Bull. Each note in Gerhard’s playing seems devoted to fleshing out the very best of what a guitar can make one feel, gently shading in color and light through the slightest emphasis or bend. Having collaborated with the likes of Arlo Guthrie and Jorma Kaukonen and contributing to the works of legendary documentarian Ken Burns, Gerhard is a living interpreter of American folk guitar as relevant as his career is storied, and the lush appointments of Crosstown Arts’ Green Room are a perfect atmosphere to breathe deeply of the man’s craft and come away transformed.
8:00 p.m, Saturday, May 21st
The Orpheum Theatre
There aren’t many female blues guitar heroes to begin with, but there is only one who has 19 commercially successful studio albums spanning a 46 year period. Bonnie Raitt has charted pop music lists for decades and sang with countless legends like John Lee Hooker, BB King, and Roy Orbison since her career began in the 1970’s. Raitt has studied at Harvard, been a long time social activist, and inspired the world with her songwriting. It seems Raitt’s work is as timeless as she is––Memphis be blessed to catch her in person at the Orpheum Theatre on Saturday, May 21st.