Photo by Jerry Colburn.
CEDRIC BURNSIDE AND LIGHTNIN' MALCOLM9:30 p.m., White Water Tavern. $10.
Last November this North Mississippi duo
played the best show I saw last year to only a couple a dozen people at White Water. Everyone I knew from that night has been downright evangelical about the duo since. Expect a full crowd Friday. The genius of the Hill Country blues, from which this pair's sound originates (Cedric is R.L. Burnside's grandson), lies in its complete devotion to rhythm. That means that Malcolm, on guitar and vocals, and Burnside, on drums and vocals, spend most of their time preserving a groove that compels everyone to stand up and stomp. When Malcolm, a doughy white boy with a John Daly starter mullet, solos or hits on a sweet guitar harmony, he has trouble suppressing a toothy smile. Burnside, meanwhile uses his stripped down kit like an ADD kid letting out aggression. He's got a polyrhythmic command that's bound to have folks bugging their eyes all night. Plus, both sing, often in harmony, in natural, deep blues voices. Go to this show.