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Thursday, Nov. 13, 2014 12:01 am

Weekend workings

The Harmans play the Bluegrass for Tallgrass fundraiser for Friends of Sangamon Valley this Sat., Nov. 15 in the indoor theater at New Salem State Park.


The skies may go gray and the world darkens as November seeps into the soul, but look for enlightenment and excitement – or at least a drink and live music – in your bar of choice this weekend.

Friday is shaping up to be the night of many challenging choices. At Marly’s Pub, the Lazer Dudes make a stunning comeback to the local scene. On hiatus as members pursued other projects, the LDs are back, and quite possibly that special glove returns as well. Joining the Dudes on stage are local instigators of musical mayhem Los Injectors and Psycho Fight to make for a regular whopper of a whooping night of rocking music.

At Donnie’s Homespun comes a band with a special 80s reference, as Cosby Sweater hits the stage for a night of electronic dance music supplemented by drums and saxophone. The funky trio traveling the country performing electro-inspired jams are joined this evening by locals Sunshine Daydream and Dusted Groove. Bar None hosts Hank & Cupcakes, a Brooklyn-based indie-rock duo, along with CJ, Tee & D plus John Phillips. Hank & Cupcakes are really Sagit “Cupcakes” Shir (drums, vocals, piano) and Ariel “Hank” Scherbacovsky (bass) a husband/wife duo originally from Israel who took their group name from a Charles Bukowski reference. They’ve made a big splash in New York City and now deliver the goods to Springfield.

We are still on Friday night, mind you, as we head out to Boondocks on Dirksen Drive for a show with Wedding Banned. Originally from Gas City, Ind., the 70s, 80s, 90s, whatever-was-and-is-popular cover band had to move to Chicago after being called “too wild and crazy” for their hometown. In the big city, the sextet garnered an award as “the best dance band in town” after hosting a popular Thursday night residency at the famed Cubby Bear bar. Now playing all kinds of corporate gigs, weddings, clubs and wherever all over Illinois, here’s your chance to see them in person in town. One more fun Friday function takes us out to Riverton for Nathan Kalish and the Lastcallers at the Old 36 Inn for a no-cover show. Nathan, a quality singer-songwriter based in Grand Rapids, Mich. and supported musically by longtime pal and bassist Eric Soules, gets around the U.S. and Europe with a Nashville-recorded new album (he already has several out) in the works for 2015. Good stuff, Maynard.

Saturday night shows up with a Bluegrass for the Tallgrass concert in the lovely indoor theater at New Salem State Park near Petersburg. The Harmans, a traditional family bluegrass band from Shipman, Ill., provide the entertainment for this musical fundraiser for Friends of Sangamon Valley. A ticket purchase helps a wonderful organization preserve our local natural heritage and gets you great music from Mike Harman as Dad, a former Rounder recording artist and member of Alison Krauss’ Union Station, leads the way for the second generation of Harmans to make merry with the music.

Come on out to the Curve Inn on old Route 66, not far from Stevenson Drive and Sixth Street, to help celebrate 12 years of ownership by Ray and Ami Merchant and Don Thompson at the venerable bar and restaurant on Nov. 15. The trio has the historic place on an incredible roll bringing good food, live music, late night DJ music and now karaoke to the Curve, open seven days (and nights) a week. The stage area, updated and ran by Ric Major, a two-time Best of Springfield winner for sound technician, has Big Daddy Jasper up there for Saturday’s party. Congratulations are dispersed to all in spades.

Yes, there are other events happening, but this is all I have room for now.

Contact Tom Irwin at


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