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The Jeff & Vida Band

Any time this rollicking Nashville string band (late of New Orleans) comes through town, it’s cause to celebrate.

A powerhouse Americana duo re-made into an even more rock-solid trio with the addition of doghouse bassist Mike Kerwin, Jeff Burke and Vida Wakeman have an uncanny knack for penning originals that draw from the same “deeper well” as Gillian Welch and David Rawlings. Meaning, they create heartbreaking Americana songs that were copywritten in 2003 but sound like they could just as easily have been birthed in 1943.

One might be tempted to dismiss Vida’s wide-eyed stage demeanor (complete with gulping vocals and do-or-die guitar strumming) as well-done shtick, but she and her compatriots are deadly serious. Her interaction with Jeff (on mandolin, banjo and guitar) exudes the second-nature vibe that only comes from years playing together in bars, juke joints and listening rooms around the USA, and – increasingly – abroad.

Their latest CD, Loaded, highlights previously hidden influences like crooner tunes and early rock and roll (think The Everly Brothers), and is earning raves. They usually play informal, pass-the-hat shows in a corner of this Post’s lounge, but after repeatedly packing the place, they’re moving upstairs to the ballroom.

This gig’s billed as a Sweethearts Dance, but if you can only come stag, don’t fret. Jeff & Vida shows are as much sit-and-listen concerts as they are cut-a-rug hoedowns. Either way, you’ll likely spend the duration smiling from ear to ear. Sat., 8 pm, American Legion Post #135 (1108 Bull St.).

SCAD Radio’s Record Show w/The Rosebuds & Schooner

Sadly, the first two times SCAD’s Student Media Department held this unique event it was sparsely attended by those outside of the art college community. Now, they have a bigger venue, and bands with an established local following, which bodes well for a larger, more diverse turnout.

A promotional event for their internet-based radio station ( and their student-run paper (District), it provides music lovers and record collectors a chance to meet and transact. They anticipate hundreds of vinyl hounds and memorabilia fanatics perusing booths offering everything from long out-of-print 45’s and rock star biographies to vintage concert tees and hard-to-find import CDs. Buy, sell and trade is the name of the game, so if you’ve got some old LPs that have been gathering dust, now may be the time to see if you can swap ‘em for something fresh.

Afterwards, student DJs Beta, Neoscene and Aerochron warm up the crowd for two South Carolina alt.rock bands.

Opening act Schooner played a well-received (but subdued) set at The Sentient Bean a few weeks back, and have drawn comparisons to Guided By Voices and Morrissey. GQ Magazine listed their debut CD as one of 2004’s best releases. Headliners The Rosebuds are a slacker trio signed to Merge Records that crafts hummable guitar/synth/drum ditties with singalong choruses. Their debut CD bears more than a passing resemblance to The (original) Modern Lovers and The Feelies, but live, they’re less precise, more given to loud rave-ups than intricate dream-pop.

I’ll be participating in this event as a dealer, so stop by and say hi if you get the chance. To reserve a table of your own , call 525-5511 or email by 5 pm, Thursday the 10th. Sat., 1 pm - 6 pm (record show) + 8 pm (music) .

Body and Soul
- Silent Film w/Live Jazz Orchestra

Luckily for us, ever since Rob Gibson took over the Savannah Music Festival, the former Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center has drawn liberally on his contacts in that milieu.

One veteran of those programs who’s featured prominently in Gibson’s local efforts has been trombonist Wycliffe Gordon. This internationally respected musician now returns to lead a performance of his sprawling orchestral score for this groundbreaking silent film.

Oscar Micheaux’s 1925 classic (starring the late Paul Robeson in his big-screen debut) is given a new lease on life with the integration of Gordon’s blues-based ruminations, which incorporate the call-and-response of traditional gospel with the shouting and chants more associated with rural folk and storytelling.

This lively and – at times – feverish score was commissioned to open the 10th season of Jazz at Lincoln Center, and continues to enjoy occasional revivals around the world. It’s been described as achieving a glorious synergy with the film.

Prior to the feature, there will be a screening of Midnight Ramble,lan hour-long documentary on the history of independent black filmmaking up through WWII. How cool is that? Fri., 6 pm (Midnight Ramble), 8 pm (Body and Soul), The Lucas Theatre - FREE.