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Live music picks: Jan. 20-23


Fred Eaglesmith comes to the Red Clay Theatre in Duluth as part of the Eddie Owen Presents series on Friday, Jan. 20. Photo: Kori Heppner

Fred Eaglesmith

Eaglesmith’s original tunes can sound like long-lost traditional songs with a modern edge or a cross between Springsteen and classic country. With an uncompromisingly independent vision, he continues to release under-the-radar gems, both live and in the studio, but there’s no substitute for seeing the man in person. His latest album, “6 Volts,” is a tribute to the early days of rock ’n’ roll. It’s a powerful piece of work, recorded live in the studio with one microphone to a reel-to-reel tape machine. That’s about as analog as it gets. There’s a raw energy in tracks such as “Betty” and the title track, where the lead guitar slices into the foreground and electrifies the room. The title of the album refers to the power supply for the early transistor radios, which became a part of the public consciousness about the same time as rock ’n’ roll.
8 p.m. Jan. 20. $25; $20 in advance. Eddie Owen Presents at the Red Clay Theatre, 3116 Main St., Duluth. 404-478-2749.

G. Love & Special Sauce

G. Love’s laid-back blend of blues, folk, rock and hip-hop never seems to pack enough punch on record, even though he’s always been a charismatic and powerful live performer. His latest album, “Fixin’ to Die,” is his fourth release without Special Sauce (though drummer Jeffrey “the Houseman” Clemens plays on a few tracks). Instead, he’s accompanied by the Avett Brothers, and the collaboration results in one of the best albums of his career. He’s touring with the stripped down version of Special Sauce, joined by Clemens and bassist Timo Shanko.
8:30 p.m. Jan. 20. $25. Variety Playhouse, 1099 Euclid Ave. N.E., Atlanta. 404-524-7354.

Savannah's Dare Dukes plays the Highland Inn Ballroom this weekend. Photo courtesy Crash Avenue Media and Management

Savannah's Dare Dukes plays the Highland Inn Ballroom this weekend. Photo courtesy Crash Avenue Media and Management

Dare Dukes

California-born, the Savannah-based musician released his second album, “Thugs and China Dolls,” this week. It was recorded in Athens, with assists from members of Modern Skirts and Of Montreal and TV on the Radio. His intricate chamber pop is bursting with memorable moments of melody that stick like glue. His voice, which manages to be both everyman plain and off-kilter quirky, might be an acquired taste for some, but it’s the perfect delivery system for his tales of strange and fascinating characters. With Book Club, Georgia Fireflies.
8 p.m. Jan. 21. $5. The Highland Inn Ballroom Lounge, 644 N. Highland Ave. N.E., Atlanta. 404-874-5756.

The Abominable Sideshow featuring Francine Reed

This benefit for the ever-entertaining Seed & Feed Marching Abominable is headlined by the bold and bluesy voice of Francine Reed. That would be worth the price of admission alone, but you’ll also see and hear the Big Peach Little Big Band, Berné Poliakoff (aka “Frenchy” of Cowboy Envy fame) and more.
7 p.m. Jan. 21. $20. First Existentialist Congregation of Atlanta, 470 Candler Park Drive N.E., Atlanta. 404-378-5570.

The Grapes

There was a time when this Grateful Dead-inspired outfit was an Atlanta mainstay, playing loads of gigs both locally and nationally. The band called it quits in 1997 after releasing its fourth and final album, “Juice.” The Grapes reunite every few years for a one-off show and they’ll be having one of those rare reunions this weekend.
8 p.m. Jan. 21. $20; $17.50 advance. Variety Playhouse, 1099 Euclid Ave. N.E., Atlanta. 404-524-7354.

David Mead

David Mead’s sweet voice and songwriting prowess have been a well-kept secret for far too long. He’s released a string of wonderful albums since debuting in 1999, and his songs have been used in quite a few television shows. He’s always remained just below the popular radar, but recent events might give him a boost. The track “The Smile of Rachael Ray,” a swaying bit of melodic sugar from Mead’s latest album, “Dudes,” caught the ear of the song’s subject, who tweeted her approval. Taylor Swift is a fan, too, and has been covering Mead’s “Nashville” in concert. Go see him live, and you’ll be a fan, too. With Harper Blynn.
8 p.m. Jan. 23. $10 in advance. Smith’s Olde Bar, 1578 Piedmont Road N.E., Atlanta. 404-875-1522.

Shane Harrison,

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