MUSIC BOX: Bluegrass takes Targhee for 26th year

By on August 6, 2013
Elephant Revival is among the anticipated list of performers headlining the 2013 Targhee Bluegrass Fest.

Elephant Revival is among the anticipated list of performers headlining the 2013 Targhee Bluegrass Fest.

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – It’s hard to imagine an atmosphere with more pickin’ and grinnin’ than at Targhee Bluegrass Festival, celebrating its 26th birthday this weekend. The stage will be stacked with precision players, including headliners (Sam Bush Band, Trampled by Turtles, The Infamous Stringdusters), the not-as-traditional (Elephant Revival, Donna the Buffalo, Greensky Bluegrass, Hayes Carll, Della Mae, The Brothers Comatose, Spirit Family Reunion), and roots bluegrass outfits (Nashville Bluegrass Band, Run Boy Run, Foghorn Stringband, Growling Old Men, Claire Lynch Band). Take into account the 8th Annual Targhee Music Camp beginning on Monday and a campground full of bluegrass musicians, and it’s the sort of subculture phenomenon that is an open door to anyone looking to partake in acoustic-based music for the soul.

26th Targhee Bluegrass Festival, Friday through Sunday at Grand Targhee Resort. $55 to $65 daily, $169 three-day. for full schedule and ticketing.

Ray Wylie ‘Wily’ Hubbard

Elder statesmen of the alt-country Texas scene, Ray Wylie Hubbard is scrappy, witty and at 66 years young, still playing small towns like Victor, Idaho, where some will discover his music for the first time. After 40 years in the business, the singer-songwriter at heart penned “Up Against the Wall, Redneck Mother,” made famous by Jerry Jeff Walker’s 1973 recording. He then went on to record 15 studio albums covering folk, country, cowpunk and rock. If you’re a fan of music with a Texas-grown edge like Townes, Guy Clark, Robert Earl Keen, and Hayes Carll, you’re in for a treat.

As for opener Jeff Crosby, Jerry Joseph perhaps put it best: “His guitar playing is frankly ripping, he’s got a big thoughtful voice and a great hungry band. I keep going back to Stephen Stills a la Manassas, in vocal timbre, guitar stylings and songwriting. There’s a lot of the Laurel Canyon vibe in his writing but at the end of the day, he’s from Idaho.”

Music on Main presents Ray Wylie Hubbard with Jeff Crosby, 6 p.m., Thursday at Victor City Park. Free, all-ages.

 John Butler Trio will awe

A masterful finger-style picker in so many quirky, virtuosic, percussive and thoughtful ways, former street busker John Butler is still an anomaly among 12-string guitarists. At times, the Aussie does more with an acoustic instrument in a live setting than is seemingly possible. Butler is Australia’s most successful independent artist and his record label, Jarrah Records, has facilitated a path for other bands in his homeland. Then there is his complementary rhythm section. Super-melodic bassist Byron Luiters and drummer/percussionist Nicky Bomba round out a memorable power trio capable of more than meets the eye.

Opening the show is 18-year-old up-and-comer Zach Heckendorf of Denver, bringing rapid-fire lyrics and jittery acoustic grooves.

Center for the Arts presents John Butler Trio with guest Zach Heckendorf, 8 p.m., Tuesday, at the Center Theater. $65 orchestra, $55 balcony, at or 733-4900.

 This body is John Brown’s

Twenty years of grassroots reggae and dub gets recycled as John Brown’s Body’s first release in four years, Kings And Queens, which debuted at No.1 on the reggae charts for Billboard, iTunes and Amazon. The eight-piece has been active since 1995, constantly infusing a futuristic nod to reggae. Kings and Queens showcases this, with electronic embellishments and a production aesthetic that breathes clean and smooth.

John Brown’s Body with guest Tilted, 9 p.m., Friday, at Pink Garter Theatre. $17 advance, $20 day-of-show, available at Pinky G’s, The Rose and

About Aaron Davis

Aaron Davis is a decade-long writer of Music Box, a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, member of Screen Door Porch and Boondocks, founder/host of Songwriter’s Alley, and co-founder of The WYOmericana Caravan.

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