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Wednesday, January 22,2014

Turn it down

A survey of Lansing's musical landscape

by Rich Tupica
The dt´s Reunion at The Avenue Cafe - Sat. Jan 25th.

The dt´s formed in the Lansing area in the late ‘80s, playing a brand of amped up power pop and rock ‘n’ roll, echoing influences like The Replacements, Soul Asylum and Husker Du. After a 12-year hiatus, the band reunites Saturday at The Avenue Café. Opening are The Hat Madder, The Hardwires and Narc out the Reds. The dt’s scored a publishing deal with Warner Brothers in 1994 and recorded two albums: “Cinch” and “Widow of an All American.” The band includes:Tom Taylor (lead vocals/guitar), Marc Nischan (lead guitar/vocals), Blair Darling (bass) and Randy Farlin (drums). In the ‘90s, The dt’s gigged locally at Small Planet, Rick’s and Mac’s Bar, but also played legendary venues like CBGB in New York and Whiskey a Go Go in Los Angeles.

The Avenue Café, 2021 Michigan Ave., Lansing. 8 p.m., $5.


Ragtime at ´The Fiddle´ - Fri. Jan 24th

Fans of vintage Scott Joplin-style ragtime might want to check out Reginald Robinson, who performs Friday at The Ten Pound Fiddle. "The Fiddle" is a long-running local concert series held at various spots in East Lansing and Lansing. Robinson is a master of contemporary ragtime piano, performing dozens of rags at his shows. He started playing piano by ear at 13; one year later he ditched school and committed himself to music and professional lessons. At age 20, he cut his first solo piano album with Delmark Records. Robinson, 41, may have a retro sound, but he records mostly originals, all in the classic rag style. He received a MacArthur Genius Grant in 2004.

Creole Gallery, 1218 Turner St., Lansing. $15, $12 member, $5 students. 8 p.m.


Gunnar & the Grizzly Boys at The Loft - Fri. Jan 24th

Gunnar & the Grizzly Boys may be from Grand Rapids, but lead singer/guitarist Gunnar Nyblad puts on his best faux-Southern accent and cranks out a high-energy brand of modern country rock, penning songs like “Standard American Sumbitch.” The band has been keeping busy since it formed in 2009, gigging alongside artists such as Lady Antebellum and Kip Moore. Friday the band headlines at The Loft. Opening are Tripp N’ Dixie and The Legal Immigrants. Nybald’s day job is farming his family’s apple and plum orchards. Nybald formed the band, with songwriter partner Joe Rood, while attending Michigan State University’s agricultural program. The band is promoting its “North Country” EP and the single “Could Be Me.”

The Loft, 414 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing. All ages, $12, $10 adv., 8 p.m.


Root Doctor CD Release at The Green Door - Sat. Jan 25th

Lansing blues vets Root Doctor release their fifth album, “New Attitude,” Saturday at The Green Door. The five-piece features Freddie Cunningham (lead vocals), James Williams (bass guitar) Mike Skory (keyboards), Bill Malone (guitar), and drummer Bobby Gardner. The new disc, a followup to 2011’s “Joy” LP, was recorded with local producer Glenn Brown at GBP Studios. The album, available on iTunes, mixes blues with touches of slick, old-school R&B, Cajun and gospel. A number of the songs were at least co-written by Skory, a soulful master of the Hammond who has played piano professionally for over three decades. Meanwhile Cunningham’s powerful voice has drawn comparisons to legends like Lou Rawls, Bobby Blue Bland and B.B. King.

Green Door, 2005 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing. 9 p.m.


Open Mic at Dagwood´s - Tue. Jan 28th.

This weekly open-mic event at Dagwood´s, hosted by local songwriter Jen Sygit, has been running each Tuesday for 10 solid years. It’s open to both seasoned musicians and rookies. You can hear a mishmash of genres: folk, blues, bluegrass, swing, jazz and folk rock, and more. Artists sign up for three songs or about 15 minutes. Participants are required to bring their own instruments but a four-channel sound system, two microphones and one acoustic guitar are supplied.The event has been voted the No. 1 Open Mic Night for four years in a row in City Pulse’s “Top of the Town” contest. If you’ve been itching to showcase your songwriting, this is your chance.

Dagwood’s Tavern & Grill, 2803 E. Kalamazoo St., Lansing, 21 and over, 9:30 p.m. to 1 a.m.

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