Neil Sedaka

Upcoming Live Music

By Paul Moffett

The flood of music acts coming through Louisville during 1997 abates somewhat in January, so we can all catch our breath and rebuild our bank accounts. This is not to say that there are not any interesting shows to see, because there are. It's just necessary to look a little harder.

Keep in mind that if there isn't a "Big" act to go see, there are plenty of local bands to see, some of which might very well be "Big" by this time next year. Take note that the recent success of Days of the New has drawn more music business attention to Louisville at a time when there are several acts quite good enough to make the transition to the "Big time." The answer is: catch 'em early, they might cost a lot to see later on.


Our homie Tim Krekel has been doing shows as the opener for a variety of acts. (His show with David Olney at the Twice Told Coffeehouse in November was a ripper.) In January, he's doing a show at the Rudyard Kipling along with Abbott Vaughan Meader and the Honkey Tonk Angels. Meader probably gets very tired of writers reminding readers that his first success as an entertainer was his John Kennedy spoof, The First Family, so I won't.

Tix and info: 636-1311

So you blew your acoustic music entertainment budget for a table at the Mike Marshall, Bela Fleck and Edgar Meyer show at the KCA. Too bad, but we all hope you can find the bucks to see Peter Rowan and Tony Rice at the Phoenix Hill Tavern on January 13.

Tix and info: 589-4957

If you miss them there, you can see them plus Tim O'Brien at the Kentucky Theatre in Lexington, one of a series of shows staged by the Troubadour Project.

Tix and info: 606-255-5700


Last month, I wrote this item:

Here's one of those "ya shudda been there" that you can be at: the band is Susannan & the B. B.s and they'll be at the Air Devils Inn on December 13. The cast of S.& B.B. is this: Duke Robillard, Susannan Robillard, Jimmy Brown and Jeff McAllister.

Turns out that my little piece of puffery was dead on, according to Jimmy Brown, who said he had more fun than any patron there. The management at ADI was so pleased that they insisted that the group return, which they will on Saturday, January 3. If you get there early, you might get a spot.

Info: 4545-9911

Wednesdays at Stevie Ray's continue to draw touring blues act as a good midweek stop. The Johnny Rawls Revue appears on January 7; Roger "Hurricane" Wilson on January 14 and Howard & the White Boys on January 28.

A couple of acts with label deals are coming in January. The Griswalds roll in for two-days, January 9 & 10. ON January 23 & 24, School Kids Records artist Big Dave & the Ultra Sonics will entertain the late-night crowd.

Of course, the rest of the Wednesday-Saturday schedule is booked with the best of local acts, who also are worthy of your time and entertainment dollar.

Tix and info: 582-9945


Dry Branch Fire Squad will roar into the Shepherdsville Country Music Show on January 9. The Squad has a new CD on Rounder, Live! At Last, to promote, so take a little extra cash.

The 1997 winner of the International Bluegrass Music Association's "Vocal Group of the Year," IIIrd Tyme Out, will bring those crisp bluegrass harmonies to the Shepherdsville Country Music Place on January 16.

If you haven't made the trip to Shepherdsville, please note that the facility has been much improved since the flood earlier this year, with completely renovated restrooms. Those comfy, comfy seats that were in the old Palace suffered no damage, either, so the seating is good.

Tix and info: 239-8004 (C. R. Wilson)


John Fishman's Jazz Mandolin Project will be at Jim Porter's Goodtime Emporium January 26.

Tix and info: 3613100

Here's a replacement jam of real interest: the Louisville Jazz Society will stage a Jazz Jam at the Comedy Club in the Mid-City Mall on Monday, January 5. It starts at 7:30 p.m. The smoke-free event is a re-staging of a Jazz Jam in August that was canceled. Whatever the reason, the house band backing up anyone with the chutzpah to get up and blow will be: Todd Hildreth, piano, Sonny Stephens, bass, Greg Walker, guitar and Bruce Morrow, drums.

How much better does it have to get?

Tix and info: 458-2023


Pantera returns to River City on January 15 for a show at the Louisville Gardens. The band has a new album, Live: 101 Proof, to promote. They recently finished up the Ozz-Fest tour, but that was not enough. They kick off their on tour as headliners on January 14 in Peoria, then to Louisville.

In spite of the announcement by the Pentagon that all of their soldiers will be required to be vaccinated against Anthrax, that's the band that will open for Pantera. Showtime is 7 p.m.

Tix and info:


Yul Brunner won't be playing the King of Siam, but you can catch Hayley Mills as Anna in the Broadway Series of "The King and I," scheduled into Whitney Hall at the KCA January 20-25. This production picked up a number of Tony Awards while on Broadway, so you can expect the best.

Tix and info: 584-7777

Should you prefer your musicals to be about more homegrown subjects, hurry on down to the KCA for the Broadway Series presentation of "State Fair," starring John Davidson. This show is billed as "The New Musical," so don't expect it to be jes' like the movie. The show runs through January 4.

Tix and info: 584-7777


Would you like to hear Antonio Dominick Benedetto Sing?

You probably have already, as he's been wowing audiences since 1950. Now he'll be here on Sunday, February 8 with the Louisville Orchestra at the Louisville Gardens. His performance is sponsored by Brown Forman and Mr. Wayne Walker.

You say again that you have never heard of this singer?

Try again. Signor Benedetto is not some imported tenor from the La Scala Opera House in sunny Italy; no, you know him better as Tony Bennett!

Tix and info: 568-1111

- Henry C. Mayer


If you're old enough to remember "Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen" and "Breaking Up is Hard to Do" when they were hit records, then you can afford the ticket for Neil Sedaka's Louisville Pops show with the Louisville Orchestra at the Palace Theatre on December 17. Of course, you had best hurry and get your tickets, as the Palace only seats about 3,000. An ensemble from the Stephen Foster Story will open the show.

Tix and info: 568-1111


The Palace must have taken a page from Coyote's; they're bringing in a triple country "hat act" show under corporate sponsorship, to wit, the Crown Royal "Untamed and True" tour featuring Mark Chestnut, David Lee Murphy and Gary Allen on January 18. The music will be twangy and the lines at Stagedoor Johnnies will be lengthy all night long.

Tix and info: 583-4555

Louisvillians who a certain age who were saddened by the recent passing of "Cactus" Tom Brooks might want to get down to Music Ranch USA in West Point for "T-Bar-V-Honors Night" with Randy Atcher on January 17. The venue has been all spruced up since the floods in the spring and they're up and running.

Tix and info: 502-922-9393

Classic Rock

Grand Funk Railroad

It's an American band at the Palace on January 24, yowie! Yep, none other than Grand Funk Railroad. No word on whether the born-again Mark Farner will be in guitar attendance, but you may be sure that boomers whose memories are not totally shot will be lining up for a ticket to ride the Railroad.

Tix and info: 583-4555


You can :"give your regards to Broadway" at the Louisville Orchestra's NightLights Series concert "Salute to Broadway" at the Palace on January 22. It has an early showtime - 6:30 p.m. - and tickets are only $15. I dare you not to leave humming at least one of those familiar tunes.

Tix and info: 583-4555

David Lang, organist at the Cathedral of the Assumption, will perform with the Louisville Orchestra at the Whitney Hall in the Kentucky Center for the Arts on January 8 at 10:30 a.m. and again on Friday, January 9 at 8 p.m. The program will consist of organ works by Bach, Saint-Saëns and Jöngen.

Tix and info: 584-7777


It'll be an a cappella hiphop night with Kentucky connections at the Palace on January 16 when the Backstreet Boys glide in for a vocalese concert. Cousins Kevin Richardson and Brian Littrell hail from Lexington, so there'll probably be family in attendance. All the more fun. Take note of the 7:30 p.m. showtime.

Tix and info: 583-4555


You'll have to let education about opera suffice this month. The Kentucky Opera will have a couple of "Lunch and Listen" events for your edification. The first, "Mozart for the Masses" (I guess that means you and me) is on January 20 and on January 27, "Singing in the Outer Limits" will expose you to the outer range of the human voice. Both lunchtime events will be at Vincenzo's Restaurant.

Tix and info: 561-7936


Steve Earle gets dropped into the country category about as often as the Rock category, or perhaps the singer / songwriter category. Whatever category you stash him in, he's worth a listen. Earle has influenced a lot of other players over the years but lately has been having some success working the Triple-A circuit. He'll be at the Brewery on January 22.

Tix and contact: 361-3100