MUSIC BOX: Honkytonk and Ferris wheels

By on July 21, 2015

Wyoming natives Luke Bell and Jess Camilla O’Neal serve solid country to the fair concert

Ten-piece soul outfit The Suffers, headline Music on Main Thursday.

Ten-piece soul outfit The Suffers, headline Music on Main Thursday.

Jackson Hole, Wyoming – An ole modern traditionalist, Cody-native and classic country crooner Luke Bell has been on a national tear as of late. Bell was briefly schooled in Laramie and propelled to Austin before landing in Nashville. He recently received a major shoutout from Rolling Stone as one of the “25 Must See Acts” of the CMA Music Festival in Nashville. His music is a nod to 1970s honky tonk adorned with heart-felt depictions of cowboy culture and hard workin’ folks, all backed by a damn good country band. Don’t sleep on this chance to see a rising star brought up in the Square State.

Opening the show is Dubois-based Jess Camilla O’Neal & The Neversweat Players. The quartet blends Western, country and Americana into a genuine Wyoming blend of rural story songs.

Teton County Fair presents Luke Bell with Jess Camilla O’Neal & The Neversweat Players, 6 p.m. Friday at Heritage Arena. All-ages. Free.

Ryan Bingham saddles up at Center for the Arts with some raw alt-country on Tuesday.

Ryan Bingham saddles up at Center for the Arts with some raw alt-country on Tuesday.

Bingham at Center

Once an obscure songwriter dabbling in ranch work and sleeping in his truck after rodeo competitions, Ryan Bingham’s modern success has not affected his gritty alt-country output one bit. Bingham won an Oscar, Grammy, Golden Globe and Critic’s Choice awards for his 2010 song “The Weary Kind,” which was prominently featured in the film “Crazy Heart.” He followed that up by releasing three successful major label albums with Lost Highway before going out on his own to self-release 2012’s “Tomorrowland” and this year’s “Fear and Saturday Night.”

What strikes this columnist most about Bingham is his ultra whiskey-soaked vocal chords, capable of drawing into focus the emotions behind his words. It can be powerful, and I highly recommend him.

Ryan Bingham, 8 p.m., Tuesday at the Center Theater. $39-$49., 733-2900.

Huge soul sounds of The Suffers

Ever heard of “Gulf Coast soul”? Houston-based 10-piece The Suffers intertwine the classic elements of soul and horn-fueled rock with the massive voice of singer Kam Franklin. At first, the formula brings to mind a jazzed-up version of Sharon Jones and The Dap-kings, though The Suffers’ four-song EP “Make Some Room,” is convincing evidence that this group is not locked into delivering solely classic soul. There’s origininality to the songs, and a patience that allows for epic slow burns like “Giver.”

Opening the show is Jackson’s Canyon Kids, an indie-folk rock duo that will be staging a full band version of what they do best – delivering lush vocal harmony within engaging songs, and arrangements that allure with folksy stylings before unleashing an ambient rock attack.

The Suffers with Canyon Kids, 6 p.m., Thursday at Music on Main in Victor City Park. Free. All-ages.

Half of Tenacious D

Kyle Gass is Jack Black’s parner in crime as Tenacious D. He’ll be in town Sunday bringing The Kyle Gass Band’s “good-time-rock-and-roll done right, with incredible harmonies, hugenormous guitars, and just the slightest dusting of flute,” according to the band’s website. The same tongue-in-cheek approach applies here, with more crunchy guitars and a throwback sound to 70s classic rock. The five-piece is fronted by vocalist and guitarist Mike Bray and features electric guitarist John Konesky, also of Tenacious D.

The Kyle Gass Band, 10 p.m., Sunday at Town Square Tavern. $10., 733-3886. PJH

Aaron Davis is an award-winning singer-songwriter, journalist, multi-instrumentalist, frontman for bands Screen Door Porch and Boondocks, and founder/host of Songwriter’s Alley.

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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