This month, let’s expand all of our musical horizons. The Hudson Valley music scene is perhaps one of the most eclectic in the country, with world-class musicians of all genres performing every night, sometimes together. This is largely thanks to the diversity of venues, promoters and above all music fans in our region.
In September, we’re highlighting some off-the-beaten-path music genres. For hippies of yesteryear and modernity, we have recommendations of jam and psychedelic rock bands. If you like to dig deep at the roots of genres that have since exploded into dozens of sonic directions, our ska, rockabilly, and soul picks are for you. Feeling adventurous? We end our column with two one-of-a-kind bands that we place under the umbrella of “indie cinematic space rock.”
Choice of jam band
UPAC (Kingston, NY)
Friday, September 23 • 8 p.m. • $45+
Little Feat was founded in 1969, so calling them a “jam band” is kind of inaccurate. The genre classification only applies retroactively, as it was popularized in the 80s when Phish and Grateful Dead fans were too numerous to ignore. While music elitists will often discredit the jam band scene for being cheesy, its fans won’t hesitate to drown out these nonsensical chants en masse with their favorite refrain. Little Feat are kind of the grandparents of the jam band scene, and the scene has embraced them as such. They always rock in an eclectic and electric way, producing roots rock in a kaleidoscope of styles.
Honorable mention: Daryl’s House Club in Pawling, NY is run by, yes…that Daryl Hall from the iconic Hall & Oates. Do yourself a favor and visit what has quickly become one of the hottest music venues and the tribute band capital of the state. The upcoming Gratefully Yours show would make a great first visit. You don’t have to be a Deadhead to take a great musical journey with this tribute act. Just open your ears and your mind on Thursday, September 22 at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $11 to $17.50.
Choice of psychedelic rock
Baguette and guests
Tubby’s (Kingston, NY)
Thursday, September 15, 2022 • 7 p.m. • $20
You don’t have to be on drugs to enjoy psychedelic rock, but, you know, it’s called psychedelic rock for a reason. California’s Wand is the kind of mind-melting indie band that’s hard to pin down with a single substance. They’re trippy, sure, but there’s also a harsh, catchy edge to their sound that rings truer than the upbeats. Dreamy wine verses with pop sensibilities will float for about a minute, then a stoned guitar or hypnotic percussive breakdown will veer the song down a dark and mysterious new alley. There is a mechanical repetitiveness in the rhythms, but with an organic heart. An incredible visual spectacle titled “The Mad Alchemist Liquid Light Show” accompanies the performance, not to be missed if dissociation is your thing.
Honorable mention: The Pineapples are a more traditional ’90s psych rock band that reunite for one night at Avalon in Catskill, NY. This blast from the past will wow you starting at 8 p.m. and tickets are just $7.
Colony (Woodstock, NY)
Sunday, Sept. 11 • 8 p.m. • $35-55
The Skatalites originated in Kingston, Jamaica 58 years ago. Although the first incarnation of the legendary band was relatively short-lived, they reunited in the 80s to begin a long and illustrious career traveling the world as ambassadors for one of Jamaica’s best exports: ska. . A precursor to reggae, ska embodies the punk rock spirit of social commentary and meaningful music. Woodstock loves The Skatalites and vice versa, so expect good vibes as they explore the roots of the genre Jamaican-style: dancing, laughing, loving and standing up to those who seek to restrict your freedom to do so.
Honorable mention: Nice Time Sound Reggae Sound System features experienced DJs spinning dynamic reggae blocks from all eras. Only $5 at the door of Half Moon in Hudson, NY, starting at 9 p.m. Friday, September 23.
Lara Hope and the Ark Tones
Widowed Jane Mine (Rosendale, NY)
Saturday, Sept. 17 • 3 p.m. • $21
Rockabilly continues to thrive in the 2020s, as brushing your hair back, primping and shaking your ass to soulful, fried southern blues rock never goes out of style. Lara Hope and the Ark-Tones are the main owners of the genre in the Hudson Valley. When he’s not touring the country for adoring fans, Hope is the musical director of the O+ festival, a real estate agent and probably ten other things. The music economy sucks so much that even tours with thousands of fans require several days of work. Especially with BSP closed. This place was cavernous. This show, on the other hand, is literally in a cave. The irony is that BSP has been criticized for its lack of amenities, while the Widow Jane Mine is praised by performers and audiences alike for being a real hole in the ground. Guess you can’t go any deeper than that.
Honorable mention: We were going to recommend 30-year-old rockabilly veterans Southern Culture on the Skids at Daryl’s House on Saturday, September 17, but it sold out just before we went to press. One more reason not to miss Lara Hope.
Suffering / Laura Elliott
Levon Helm Studios
Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022 • 8 p.m. $35 – $50
Hailing from Houston, Texas, The Suffers are a 10-piece soul blast who don’t take risks when it comes to telling it like it is. Their irreverent sense of humor sets them apart from more traditional and serious soul bands. Their I-don’t-have-what-you-think attitude is on full display in their extensive catalog of comedic music videos and occasionally swear-fueled lyrics. The musicianship is top-notch, the writing is inventive and approachable. The band has its more introspective and low-key moments, which serve as the perfect breathers amid the ear-to-ear smiling energy of their eminently danceable songs.
Honorable mention: Lindsay Webster’s pipes aren’t just legendary in her native Hudson Valley. She toured venues around the world, keeping the Woodstock name alive and synonymous with music (never mind that the festival of the same name took place elsewhere). Webster topped the smooth jazz charts, and seeing her near you will surely put you at the top of the Hudson Valley soul/R&B scene. She plays The Falcon on Friday, September 30 at 7 p.m., without cover.
Choice of indie cinematic space rock
Rabbit Rabbit Radio
Opus 40 (Saugerties, NY)
Sunday, September 25, 3 p.m. • $12
Carla Kihlstedt and her husband Matthias Bossi released Rabbit Rabbit Radio’s debut album about ten years ago in the most innovative way: fans paid a monthly subscription, and the band delivered an original lineup and recording each month. in return. Today, such a model drives tons of indie bands on Patreon and similar services, but it’s fitting that Rabbit Rabbit Radio invented it on its own, well ahead of the curve. Their music is also ahead of its time, sometimes sounding like it’s from a post-apocalyptic future where life is dark but also strikingly beautiful. Their musical styles are all over the map, but a cinematic, brooding and haunting foreboding pervades much of the work. And yet it can be paradoxically uplifting, with Kihlstedt’s piercing voice soaring skyward with inventive melodies and harmonies that are as catchy as they are empowering. It’s also fitting that this one-of-a-kind band performs at a truly one-of-a-kind Opus 40 venue. Best to go online and start listening. These sounds are difficult to convey with words.
Honorable mention: Sound of Ceres released their dreamy and breathtaking space opus Emerald Sea just a few months ago. We can’t imagine a better place to experience this dramatic work of dark exoticism with heavy classical flourishes than the outdoor Maverick Concert Hall in the woods of Woodstock, NY. Cast your ears into a blissful black hole this Friday, September 9 at 7 p.m. As of this writing, there are only a few dozen $23 tickets left.