Coming right 'round the corner to Dollhouse Productions: Ethiopian Meklit Hadero, a singer/songwriter who currently calls San Francisco home, performs Jan. 21. "You may not have heard Meklit Hadero's music before, but once you do, it'll be tough to forget," said National Public Radio. "Hadero's sound is a unique blend of jazz, Ethiopia, the San Francisco art scene and visceral poetry; it paints pictures in your head as you listen."
Indeed, her music seems to have been seeded by, among others, Ani DeFranco, Tracy Chapman, Nina Simone, Norah Jones and Regina Spektor. In another way, she is blindingly original. She often collaborates with visual arts in San Francisco, and has produced Earthbound, a "hip hop space opera" with two Ethiopian emcees. The world, I think, will soon discover her.
Tickets are $10 advance, and will be $12 at the door. See the event's Facebook page for ticket details.
Other Dollhouse shows include the return of Nashville greaser/surfer punks Turbo Fruits (Jan. 27) with Wet Socks and White Gold, and a Jan. 9 appearance by the Atlanta drag company Legendary Children. It's a performance and photo show, the latter described thusly: "Six photographers — all gay Southerners — document the performers dedicated to building an edgy, creative, and accepting community for drag performers in the Southeast." DJ King Atlas and White Gold will provide music.
Check it out at legendarychildrenatlanta.com.
The board at the Bean
The Savannah Rocks! project gets bigger and better. I stopped into the Sentient Bean Sunday, as Tom Kohler, Jim Reed and their friends were scanning old photos and memorabilia from the early days of locally-made music here in town. I saw lots of people and some incredible vintage stuff. On Friday, Jan. 3, the group's 30-foot bulletin board (it takes up half the Bean's wallspace) will be unveiled. Keith Kozel will DJ a program of Savannah-centric music for "Come Together: A User-Built History of Rock Music in Savannah" from 6 to 9 p.m. You're invited to tack stuff up all month long, before the board moves on to another destination.
Pleased as punch to see that Ryan G and our pals at Graveface Records have a Casket Girls full-length coming out Feb. 11, their second, True Love Kills the Fairy Tale.
Four days later, the Graveface Roadshow takes to the highway, with the Stargazer Lillies and Ryan's other freako musical project, Dreamend, joining the girls for a series of southeastern shows, followed by dates all over This Great Land (they'll be playing SXSW in mid-March). Local and regional bands from the Graveface family will come and go along the way.
The Graveface Roadshow will finish up with a March 22 performance at Dollhouse here at home. So much more than a mere "show," this will be the real, true, official Graveface Fest 2. Featured that day (4 p.m. until 2 the next morrow): Kylesa (not remotely a Graveface act, but we'll take it!), Casket Girls, Dreamend, Stargazer Lillies, Crazy Bag Lady, Blackrune and mumbledust.
Halloween-themed (what, you think Ryan would have it any other way?) Tickets soon at Graveface.com. There's an event Facebook page you should have a look at.
• Tickets go on sale Jan. 10 for a Johnny Mercer Theatre show from acoustic "neo soul" singer/songwriter Amos Lee April 8. Known initially for a fruitful professional collaboration with Norah Jones, Lee has a legion of famous fans, many of whom turn up singing duets on his records (try Sam Beam of Iron & Wine, Willie Nelson, Alison Krause, Patty Griffin and Lucinda Williams, for starters). He's opened for Dylan, Haggard, the Avetts, Paul Simon, Van Morrison and Elvis Costello. Lee fourth album, 2011's Mission Bell, debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Top 200 chart.