Irish, Flash, Colour
What a weekend of this, that and the other things, including the Ides of March plopped in there for good measure. Let’s begin, shall we?
We must -- or so we should -- so we shall, start off with our annual review of Irish/Celtic music around town for the big St. Patrick’s Day weekend. Our first act of the celebration is McKinney, Hennessy & O’Hare this Thursday (tonight, for our intrepid readers) at the Hoogland Center for the Arts in the Club Room. This trio of vocals, guitar, harmonica, whistle and flute features folks you already may know, with Rick Dunham (Elvis Himselvis) as McKinney, me (Tom Irwin) as Hennessy and Theresa O’Hare (as herself) doing mostly Clancy Brothers, plus traditional Tin Pan Alley tunes from the early 1900s that we associate with St. Pat’s Day. Then catch the thrifty three at George Rank’s from 2 to 5 on Saturday afternoon and at 3Sixteen Wine Bar in Chatham on Sunday from 3 to 6 p.m.
The next sighting of Celtic music comes Friday night at Robbie’s with Skibbereen, featuring Declan James, Hank Helton, Colin Helton, Rachel Helton and Danny Kerwin on an assortment of instruments including flute, whistle, guitars, banjo, violin, bass and plenty of brogue-tinged vocals playing cool Celtic songs with a world music edge. Then catch the Skibs on Saturday, up early for an 8 a.m. start time for the annual pre-parade Kegs ‘N Eggs event at Floyd’s Thirst Parlor. Their next showing comes during the 5th Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade at the Tap Room in Chatham on Sunday. The parade starts at 2:30 and lasts under three minutes, while the band plays on from 1 to 4 p.m. for some jolly good, proper St. Pat’s fun.
Our third group gets the Band Spotlight this week, so find details on The Emerald Underground there. This weekend, you’ll find the Celtic-fusion band at Lime Street Cafe on Friday and Saturday nights and at Danenberger’s Family Vineyards on Sunday afternoon, plus at Robbie’s next Friday, March 22, for a final nightcap of the Irish celebration.
In non-Irish happenings, Jack Flash, Springfield’s oldest -- and now the newest -- Rolling Stones cover band brings their “sticky fingers” into the Curve Inn this Thursday. Fronted by Kevin Hawkins, aka Hipbone Sam, the seven-piece group reformed last year after a break from the original configuration that was around in the early 2000s. Look for more “Stones for your Bones” shows all through 2019 and beyond. Be sure to get there early for a debut performance by the Rick Mari Band at 6 p.m. Rick, a well known and highly respected member of the music community, is in break out form, backed by a talented group of top-notch, local bandmates ready to set the tone for the night, for now and forever.
On Sunday evening, from 5 to 8, Dreaming in Colour, a Springfield-based original jazz fusion band now in its 30th year of existence, lands at the Curve Inn before heading off for gigs next week in Chicago and St. Louis with world-renowned and Grammy award-winning musicians. Founded by bassist Kevin Ellis in 1988, and now co-anchored by drummer Chris Noonan (they’ve been at it together some 28 years and counting), the touring group features Tom Byrne (guitar), Jason Swagler (sax) and Michael Scherer (keyboards), all top players from around the Midwest. Many of Springfield’s best jazz and rock musicians have passed through the group during its run, while DiC just keeps on making brilliant instrumental music, continually pushing the original vision of the band.
Go get your green on.