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A Triple Play For Finally Friday Live At Eastside Bowl

The Delevantes

This Friday is an especially rich date for live shows in Music City. Banditos are throwing an album release party outdoors at the Basement at 5 pm. Joshua Hedley and Dawn Landes are on the Musicians Corner bill at Centennial Park. Christina Vane celebrates her new CD at Dee’s. And I’m taking my kid to see Haim from the lawn at Ascend. But folks, none of that distracts from or overlaps with WMOT’s stacked lineup at lunch hour at Eastside Bowl. You can do it all.

With The Delevantes in the house, everything else will take care of itself, because here we have one of the bands that made Nashville look and sound cool to the outside world in 1995. I saw music videos for “Pocketful of Diamonds” and “Driving At Night” on CMT from my then home in Little Rock, AR and it was part of the allure that led me to move to Nashville the following year. Brothers Mike and Bob fused vintage rock and roll with urbane twang like New Jersey’s answer to Dwight Yoakam, with a dose of jangle pop on top. After their strong run on Rounder Records, they took a long hiatus as they developed other lines of creative work in the visual arts (though Bob made numerous fine solo albums). So for us fans, their recent regrouping to make last year’s A Thousand Turns was most welcome. Their producer and old friend Garry Tallent (bass player for Bruce Springsteens’ E Street Band) told the brothers that the sessions made him feel as if the Delevantes had never taken a break. Sounds like that when you hear them in person too.

I raved about Sophie Gault in this space when she played the at-home version of the Finally Friday game earlier this year. “Gault has a gripping, emotional country vibrato that calls to mind Lucinda Williams, Kelly Willis and Kelsey Waldon,” I wrote, and time has only borne that out. Sophie’s February album Delusions of Grandeur is a punchy, raw and tuneful country album, one of my favorites this year. (She’s just posted a new whimsical video for the song“Heavy Metal” which you can find here.) Part of the album’s sonic magnetism was the work of Gault’s producer, the legendary Ray Kennedy, whose track record includes roots icons Steve Earle and Lucinda. His take: "Sophie’s songs have a cozy familiarity with a feeling reminiscent of some of my favorite records from the ’70s: timeless yet new, with an emotional delivery I don’t hear in other contemporary records.”

Jarrod Dickenson joins the long and illustrious line of story-forward songwriters from Texas who’ve joined the Nashville community and kept its literate country soul healthy for doing so. Originally from Waco, he started his professional life in music in Austin then lit out for stints in Los Angeles and Brooklyn before finally lighting here after a ton of hard-earned experience and recording the impressive signature album Ready The Horses. His most recent release featured covers of Texans he admires, including Roy Orbison, Esther Phillips and Doug Sahm. Whether on record or on stage, this red-head is no stranger to soulful roots music, earning critics’ comparisons to Gram Parsons, Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen.

The music starts at noon in the cozy Wash at Eastside Bowl. Audio only this week, so catch this impressive bill on WMOT 89.5 or WMOT.org.

Craig Havighurst is WMOT's editorial director and host of The String, a weekly interview show airing Mondays at 8 pm, repeating Sundays at 7 am. He also co-hosts The Old Fashioned on Saturdays at 9 am and Tuesdays at 8 pm. Threads and Instagram: @chavighurst. Email: craig@wmot.org