HEADED TO JUANITA'S: Ingram Hill.
Though the name could fool you, Memphis-based Ingram Hill is not a solo act; it’s a young Memphis-based pop quartet that is making waves on the Southern rock front. After a few months away, the group returns for what’s sure to be a packed show at Juanita’s on Friday, Sept. 15.
You may also assume wrongly by their fresh, pretty-boy looks of Ingram Hill’s members that they are targeting the Tiger Beat crowd. Granted, the appeal is there: In Ingram Hill’s previous shows here we’ve seen the front of the stage lined with doe-eyed, young females picking out which band member they’d like to “take home,” not to mention random etchings on the bathroom wall in loopy, girly handwriting stating simply, “I (heart) Ingram Hill.”
We all know that in the rock business, a cute image and sex-crazed females make the rock ’n’ roll world go round. But all that aside, Ingram Hill’s music is more than mall-goer Muzak –- the group delves into darker, emotional subject matter and its members are students of the classic rock bands of the ’70s and ’80s, such as Pink Floyd, Boston, Queen and Tom Petty.
With an undeniable mainstream mass appeal and after only five years of playing various clubs (House of Blues books them frequently), Ingram Hill has been scooped up by the Disney-owned major label Hollywood Records. Hollywood re-released Ingram Hill’s “June’s Picture Show” early last year, and recently the band has enjoyed success through singles “Almost Perfect” and “Will I Ever Make It Home?”
somedaynew, a melodic modern-rock quartet from Atlanta, will open at 9 p.m. Admission is $12.
OK, let’s get it out of the way: Roger Clyne wrote the instrumental theme song for the white-trash-spoofing, animated suburban sit-com “King of the Hill.” An impressive thing to dot his resume, for sure, and that probably affords him his most mainstream recognition. But there’s much more to him and his cronies, the Peacemakers, who will appear at Sticky Fingerz on Wednesday, Sept. 21.
In the early 1990s, Clyne dabbled with the almost-famous Tempe, Ariz., band The Refreshments (then known affectionately as “The Freshies”), a somewhat unfocused, though widely popular rock band among the college crowd. Ten years ago, he formed the Peacemakers, which has developed into a narrative-styled band with a humorous, infectious, high-energy rock appeal, sort of like John Cougar Mellencamp hired to serenade in a sombrero. Because Clyne and the Peacemakers get little-to-no commercial radio play, they take a constant-touring approach to promotion. Though physically more difficult, it’s arguably a more rewarding way to reach grassroots fans. It must be working: The Peacemakers are the only independent band to have had four consecutive albums debut in the top 10 of Billboard’s Internet sales chart, including their latest, “¡Americano!,” which debuted at No. 1 last year.
Most recently they recorded a live album at the famous Billy Bob’s club in Fort Worth, Texas, where guys like Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson have recorded in the past.
Cory Branan of Memphis, who plays around three times a year at the venue, will be the “very special guest,” opening at 9 p.m. Admission is $7.
To call Cincinnati’s Thee Shams “retro” would be fair, given the lo-fi, early ’60s, garage sound of their albums. They’re obviously influenced by early Stones recordings, but we’re not calling them copycats; rather, they are very studied talented emulators.
These Fat Possum recording artists will do a Monday night show at Sticky Fingerz on Sept. 19. Unlike many of their label mates, Thee Shams is not a blues band, though the influence is there. It’s more accurate to call it a blues lover’s rock band, much like we would call the Black Keys, though Thee Shams involves more flesh in its music, using a Hammond B3 organ and harp as well as guitars and percussion.
The band’s latest albums, “Please Yourself” and “Walk the Line,” are both excellent additions to the ever-expanding Fat Possum roster. The show will have an opening act, not announced as of our press time, starting at 9 p.m.
The Juliana Theory, which is more like a secular post-emo band with biblical references than a Christian rock band, has parted ways with both the Tooth and Nail and Epic labels to launch its own label, Paper Fist. The Seattle band, which regularly records at Barry Poynter’s studio, will play at Vino’s Brewpub on Tuesday, Sept. 20. The show is part of the band’s promotional tour of “Deadbeat Sweetheart,” the Juliana Theory’s first effort since parting ways with the big-wig label. Spiritually minded intelligent rock band Lovedrug will open the show, and Days Away and Goodwill also will appear. The all-ages show starts at 7 p.m., and admission is $12.
Local old time country favorites the Salty Dogs will be at White Water Tavern on Friday, Sept. 16. The group took a couple of months off for various reasons, including the birth of the first child of vocalist/guitarist/songwriter Brad Williams. A new album is forthcoming. Admission is $5 for the 10 p.m. show.