Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Shakori Hills Spring 2012 - The Local Bands

With over 60 bands attending the four-day festival,Shakori Hills' spring 2012 iteration has more than enough variety to please every taste. We're going to be taking the weeks leading up to the festival to introduce you to some of the acts we're most excited about. It's starting today with bands from the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Triangle and North Carolina as a whole. Look for new Shakori updates every Wednesday.

Saturday, Grove Stage: 11:00pm

As one of the resounding highlights of the Hopscotch Music Festival, Bombadil was a not-so-surprising but thoroughly exciting addition to the Shakori Hills line-up. Having recently released their second album, All That the Rain Promises, Bombadil's star is rising. After a hiatus related to health issues, Bombadil is roaring back to form, expertly crafting their singular mixture of Bolivian folk, roots rock, and chamber pop as if they'd never missed a beat. It is highly recommended that everyone make every effort to catch their set at the Grove Stage Saturday night. This is a quartet of masterful musicians and unparalleled showmen whose live performances vacillate between bombastic energy and restrained solemnity.

Holy Ghost Tent Revival
Thursday, Carson's Grove: 8:30pm
Saturday, Dance Tent: 6:00pm
Brass-happy five-piece Holy Ghost Tent Revival bring the rock to the root and the root to the rock. Rolling together banjos, horns, and harmonies to craft playful old-timey folk-pop-rock, Holy Ghost Tent Revival explodes with talent and energy. The second-to-none experience of attending a Holy Ghost Tent Revival show is perhaps analogous to it's namesake, a tent revival. Stomping, shouting, and dancing, propelled by resplendent horns and upbeat banjo is enough to move even the heaviest of feet and lift the lowest of souls. While the Caron's Grove show will no doubt be great, wait until they hit the Dance Tent Saturday night, that is venue where the band and the crowd will shine.

Midtown Dickens
Saturday, Carson's Grove: 7:00pm

Midtown Dickens has long been a staple of the Triangle music scene. After a year of almost constant travelling, playing with artists like The Mountain Goats, Megafaun, and Lost in the Trees, the band is poised to release their third album, Home. The upcoming album was recorded by Scott Solter,who has worked with Spoon, St. Vincent and the aforementioned Goats of the Mountain. If the single they've released, Only Brother, is any indication, Midtown Dickens is gracefully maturing and further developing their homespun, stomping, bluegrassy sound.

Justin Robinson and The Mary Annettes
Friday, Carson's Grove: 9:00pm

As a Grammy-winning founding member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops, Justin Robinson has established himself as a fixture of the North Carolina roots and old-timey music scene. Now, he brings some of that magic to the Mary Annettes, a collective of multi-instrumentalists that share Robinson's passions for a bygone era. Though they have a diverse background (ranging from Josh Stohl's Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering to Sally Mullikin's luthier shop), the band manages to coalesce around Robinson's storytelling, providing a rich, updated take on traditional Carolina roots music.

Curtis Eller
 Thursday, Cabaret Tent: 7:00pm
Friday, Cabaret Tent: 4:30pm

Proclaiming himself a song-and-dance man ("like Al Jolson, but with more cursing" [ext. link]), Curtis Eller has been bringing his unusual, updated spin on old-timey banjo music to crowds from Durham to New York City. A vaudevillian performer at his core, this "yodeling banjo player" spins the history of the United States across the Americana loom. Songs range from stomping, shouting, bluegrass to pure country numbers, but all are informed by the carnivalesqueties of Curtis Eller's banjo-driven American Circus.

Diali Cissokho & Kairaba
Thursday, Meadow Stage: 12:00am 
Friday, Carson's Grove: 9:30pm

Armed with a kora, a traditional West African 21-string bridge-harp, Diali Cissohko emigrated from Senegal to Pittsboro in 2009.  Fusing the kora's unique timbre with guitar-driven world beat, Diali Cissohko and Kairaba make some undeniably danceable music. Cissohko adds the rich griot heritage of traditional Senegalese storytelling to the mix, tying an undeniably soulful and earnest ribbon around the Senegalese-Carolinian musical hybrid. 

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