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Thursday, April 4, 2019 12:03 am

No fooling with music

Chuck Mead and his Grassy Knoll Boys play Bar None with Pistol Pete Midtgard on Sunday at Bar None.

It’s April, and the time for fooling is already over, unless you like to keep April Fool’s Day going all month long. Whatever the case, there’s plenty of music happening and that’s no joke.


Start your weekly music run on Thursday with a stunning collection of roots, singer-songwriter, Americana-based, guitarist guys to choose from playing around town. At Pease’s at Bunn Gourmet there’s Stuart Smith from Winchester, who released “War Horse,” a brilliant album of songs (on vinyl, too!), last October that received national critical attention and global airplay. Then South City, St. Louis-based Adam Gaffney, who just last week put out his album “Real & Raw” on Bandcamp, debuts at Buzz Bomb. Out at Boondocks comes Ryan Bingham, a nationally touring, Texas songwriter now in the big time, but still fits on the same page with all these fine talents from our area. To top off our amazing Thursday list, The Curve Inn hosts Rogers & Nienhaus, aka Terry Jones Rogers and Scott Nienhaus, longtime friends and playing pals with incredible backgrounds in popular American roots rock, including stints with groups such as The Byrds, featuring Michael Clarke, Firefall and Nicolette Larson.

Get yourselves ready and willing when this Friday and Saturday the Route 66 Hotel & Conference Center (just off of South Sixth St.) hosts Springfield’s latest and greatest hometown music festival, Sunshine 66: A Hotel Music Fest. Set up with a feel-good, jamming vibe, acts play in the ballroom on Friday night and in the bar, as well as the ballroom, all day and night on Saturday. Plus there’s a continual, unplugged pickers hangout area in the lobby area to complete the “festival in a hotel” concept. Currently the Route 66 hotel rooms are filled, but you don’t need to stay there to come enjoy the music. So figure out a way to boogie on in and enjoy The Station, Chicago Farmer, Sunshine Daydream, Edward David Anderson and Mace Hathaway, with Peaches and Bacon in the picking area during cocktail hour on Friday. Then Saturday gives us Mr. Blotto, Sunshine Daydream, Kara Cavanaugh, Jaik Willis, Jack Dupp & the Empty Bottles, Positively 4th Street, Pimpin Henry, Devin Williams, The Chickadee Sermon, Larson & Cantrall Play Dead, Kyle Tasch: Musical Comedy and Hell’s Half Acre. For more info on tickets and a final lineup and schedule, visit the festival’s Facebook page.

On Saturday night, Krush the Wall happens at Casey’s Pub featuring X-Krush and Off the Wall trading sets all night long with a big finale jam. Last year’s party was immensely successful and lots of fun, so the popular cover rock bands are at it again with more beautiful mayhem bound to ensue.

Sunday marks a visit from Chuck Mead and his Grassy Knoll Boys for a Bedrock 66 show at five o’clock in the evening at Bar None. Chuck, no stranger to Springfield, was a founding member of the seminal, modern, classic country band BR-549, placing him at the forefront of what’s now called Americana for the last couple of decades. He’s got a new album out called “Close to Home” and will surely, as always, be packing a hot damn band. Opening the show is Pistol Pete Midtgard as the Maudlin Minstrel, a newcomer to town, but a longtime member of the professional music world. As the stand up and on it bass player for the Twistin’ Tarantulas, he led the Detroit-based, hard rocking, cutting edge, rock ’n’ roll band on a worldwide romp for over 20 years and counting. Expect raucous stories, wild songs and good times galore from Pete.

Off we go into more April tomfoolery. 

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