News Column

Top picks for don't-miss events

June 28, 2013


June 28--Who else should you be sure not to miss? Great question. Thanks for asking.


Karen Lovely: Portland's kind of riddled with blues-belting women; the festival reinforces that fact every year. Lovely is one of the best. She's won seven Muddy Awards, and was nominated for three Blues Music Awards in 2011. One of those three nominations was for her second album, "Still the Rain." 7:30 p.m., Miller Stage

March Fourth Marching Band: There aren't a lot of bookings capable of fading so perfectly into the fireworks (which isn't really what will happen, because Linda Hornbuckle is going to sing the national anthem, but work with me). March Fourth is Portland's Marching Band, and they'll make a big, fun weirdo (term of endearment) racket in advance of the big, bright, fun racket they'll shoot off from the barges out on the river. 9 p.m. , Miller Stage


Hot 8 Brass Band: One of New Orleans' many marching bands. And they don't need stilts in New Orleans. They get by on smooth, suave and style. A whole lot of musical style. A music style infused with a certain, oh, what's "Get me another drink, please?" in French? Their new album is "Tombstone." 6:15 p.m., First Tech Blues Stage

Allen Stone: Allen Stone looks like he's going to engage you in a very long discussion about Widespread Panic. He looks like he's a daisy behind the ear and a peace sign away from starring in another movie about Woodstock. But his music sounds like Marvin, and like Stevie. His music reaches back to those perfect days of soul and R&B. 7 p.m., Miller Stage


Scott Pemberton: Pemberton was a late addition last year, and then a big hit at the festival. You haven't seen anyone play guitar like him, and you won't see anyone play guitar like him. That's because, as Los Lobos' Steve Berlin said last year, no one plays guitar like Pemberton. He plays with a controlled recklessness that makes every song seem like it's own, original adventure. 3 p.m., First Tech Blues Stage

Nikki Hill: Originally from North Carolina but now based in the cradle of rock, St. Louis (Chuck Berry's there, back off), Hill is what happens when you take a church upbringing and toss it in the punk rock blender. Though, as she told the Chicago Tribune, the punk thing only went so far, "So I started getting into vintage stuff and finding the most eclectic people of that time. Little Richard definitely inspired that." 6 p.m., First Tech Blues Stage

North Mississippi Allstars: Some kids get all the luck. Brothers Luther and Cody Dickinson grew up influenced by their father, Memphis musician and producer Jim Dickinson. Jim produced bands like the Replacements and Willy DeVille. He worked extensively with Ry Cooder. He played on records by the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan. His kids soaked up that and the mystery of the juke joints and classic characters like R.L. Burnside, and Junior Kimbrough. 6:45 p.m. , Miller Stage


Robert Randolph and the Family Band: They call it the sacred steel, a style of music that grew out of the Pentecostal church. If Randolph could find a way to strap on his 13-string pedal steel guitar and run around, he would. Since he can't, he bounces, and jumps, and fills his music with the kind of talent that got Rolling Stone to name him one of the 100 all-time best guitarists. 6:30 p.m., First Tech Blues Stage

-- Ryan White


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