Crucial Concerts for the Coming Week

Sue Foley, Nat Adderley Jr., Cheap Trick, Little Mazarn and Ralph White, High Desert Queen, and the Austin Record Convention

Crucial Concerts for the Coming Week

Sue Foley

Antone's Nightclub, Friday 15 - Pinky’s Blues prerelease show

The sound of Sue Foley takes you there. That high-gain Tele through red-hot tubes. That sultry, soulful, emotionally calloused way of singing. You put on her records and whatever space you're currently in becomes blues night at an old Texas roadhouse. Drop the needle on Pinky's Blues and get transported.

Chris Layton's sticks striking a snare – an impeccable sonic signature of Texas blues – pervades the 12-track album. The Double Trouble drummer and Foley's Jungle Show bandmate hits blues-beat nirvana on "Southern Men," a flip of Tommy Brown's little known "Southern Woman," bracing beneath some of the redheaded guitarist's rawest string work – with rugged phrasing offering a call-and-response to the vocal hook. Lesser-known covers highlight the LP: her take on Angela Strehli's "Two Bit Texas Town" grooves low-down but prideful, while Sunny & the Sunliners' "Think It Over" dissolves into a spotlight moment of pure Sue Foley oneness.

2018 master class The Ice Queen stands as a tough act to follow, but the pandemic- tracked, charismatic blues boogies of Pinky's, cut with Mike Flanigin on the spinning organ, Layton on skins, and forever-bassist Jon Penner, hits with a likable singularity. The record drops Oct. 22, but Austin gets the release show early at Antone's, where late proprietor Clifford first summoned the young Canadian transplant in 1990. – Kevin Curtin


Austin Record Convention

Palmer Event Center, Friday 15 (Early Admission) – Sunday 17

Pandemic gains: Zoom stock skyrocketed, but so did music sales. Now notching its 40th year, the semiannual Austin Record Convention sat out 2020 but returned this May in a space twice as large as before with its hundreds of sellers mostly intact. Yours truly scored two dozen vinyl totaling just under $400. Ancient Dio wax runs a veritable fortune these days, but vintage hip-hop joints at negligible prices surfaced: Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E., Biz Markie, Eric B & Rakim. Raking in COVID counteracts from Motown – the Temptations, Marvin Gaye – I loaded up some Al Green, but should've bought more Otis Redding. Make a list; check it twice. – Raoul Hernandez

High Desert Queen, Rickshaw Billie's Burger Patrol

Swan Dive, Friday 15

Only two years into their formation, High Desert Queen managed to nail a mature desert rock edge – the kind you want sittin' on your shelf – packed tight with thoughtfully cohesive and gnarly sounds. Gracefully written, their debut Secrets of the Black Moon comes bearing eight repeat-worthy tracks stocked with driving downbeats from Phil Hook, heavy bass from Matt Metzger, invigorating chords from Rusty Miller, and spellbinding words from Ryan Garney. Rickshaw Billie's Burger Patrol, Holy Death Trio, and Goodeye join the party, kicking off the inevitably high-octane performance. Oh, and in the spirit of the holiday, wear your best action movie character 'fit – make sure it dooms! – Morgan-Taylor Thomas


Cheap Trick, Eric Tessmer

Nutty Brown Amphitheatre, Friday 15

"We're too dumb to quit," Cheap Trick supremo Rick Nielsen recently said. "We just love to play." Accordingly, the World's Greatest Power-Pop Band must've felt like caged tigers during COVID-19 lockdown – they normally average 150 road dates annually. Hence, this trek supporting their 20th studio full-length In Another World probably feels like the orgasm ending a 15-year dry spell. The record sounds like, well, a great Cheap Trick album: Lennon and McCartney popcraft meets the raw power of early Who and Jeff Beck-era Yardbirds. Live, they're consistently great. – Tim Stegall


Adderley School Presents Broadway & Jazz w/ Nat Adderley Jr.

Parker Jazz Club, Sunday 17

Founded by actress/singer Janet Adderley – mother of local vocalist Akina – to teach children musical theatre and performance, the Adderley School produces a power-packed day at Parker Jazz Club. First up is A... My Name Is Alice, the 1983 musical/sketch revue performed by and celebrating women of all ages. Then comes a show from pianist Nat Adderley Jr., son of the eponymous trumpeter, nephew of saxophone giant Cannonball Adderley, and musical director for late soul star Luther Vandross for two-plus decades. Proceeds benefit the school, which recently expanded to Austin from its California base. Showtime is at 3pm. – Michael Toland


Little Mazarn and Ralph White

Dry Creek Cafe, Sunday 17

Undoubtedly Austin's best bait shop listening room experience, the nearly 70-year-old Dry Creek Cafe had been rejuvenated with shows booked by in-house band Cactus Lee, but is now set to close (see "Faster Than Sound"). Before the lights go out, weird Americana eulogizes Sunday with former Bad Liver Ralph White returning to town to moan his high lonesome and exotic roots, and Little Mazarn enchanting behind Lindsey Verrill's banjo and Jeff Johnston's saw. Cash only, but the sunset's free. – Doug Freeman

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