MUSIC PICKS: JAN 19 - 25 | Music Picks | Salt Lake City Weekly
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Music » Music Picks


Dale Watson @ The State Room 1/24, Bleu Grave, Suppertime @ Boardwalk Sound 1/20, Joshua James @ Velour 1/21, and more.


  • John Anderson
  • Dale Watson

Dale Watson @ The State Room 1/24
Dale Watson is the real deal. A dedicated guitar slinger, his allegiance to classic country encompasses the sounds of Bakersfield honky-tonks in true vintage tradition. He takes the role of a sturdy, so-called "Ameripolitan" insurgent, wholly dedicated to authenticity, from his outsider attitude and silver pompadour, to his resonating baritone and twangy guitar. "I realized if I was going to be happy, I've got to do what I do and, whether right or wrong, just go with that and don't compromise," he once told The Guardian. "I found out any kind of compromise with Nashville was like putting your head on a platter. ... I would rather fight for something I believe in than do something I don't." That steadfast determination reflects his no-nonsense, blue-collar credence and a decidedly unapologetic attitude. An early song, "Nashville Rash," reflected his contempt for commercial country radio, a view he reiterated on successive albums Blessed Or Damned and the equally assertive I Hate These Songs. Then again, Watson lives it as he sees it. He started making music as a pre-teen, and later became so enamored with truck-driving songs, he became a long-haul trucker himself. His latest album may be dubbed Call Me Insane, but we suspect he's anything but. Catch Dale Watson and special guest Matt Hillyer at the The State Room, on Tuesday, Jan 24 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $26 and can be found at (Lee Zimmerman)

  • courtesy photo
  • Bleu Grave

Bleu Grave, Suppertime @ Boardwalk Sound 1/20
Debuting a short time ago in September of 2022, Bleu Grave have been releasing singles and sharing their mellow melodic jams while working their way around the local music scene. They debuted their first single "More Ghosts Than People" during the same month, and it's a good introduction to the new band. The bad-ass cover art goes well with the morose and calm track. Pressing play on the track was reminiscent of "House of the Rising Sun" by The Animals; it has a signature strumming guitar with low and slow vocals. Fast forward to November, and Bleu Grave officially dropped their next single "Treasure Girl," which features similar vibes as their first, but with a bit more reverb. Their third official release, "Cabin Fever," was also out in November; I say "official" because the group has posted many videos on their Instagram and YouTube, including unreleased tracks played during practice/rehearsal time. One such track, "Squid," features a video that opens with a spooky cartoon before moving over to the band jamming out, laughing and having a good time. Joining Bleu Grave is another new group called Suppertime. They also posted for the first time in September 2022, but haven't been on social media much since then, so it'll be a cool surprise to see what they bring to the table. Catch these local acts on Friday, Jan 20 at 6:30 p.m. Tickets for the all-ages show are $12 before the show and $15 the day of. Find tickets at (Emilee Atkinson)

  • Courtesy Photo
  • Joshua James

Joshua James @ Velour 1/21
There's sure to be some excitement for this show featuring singer-songwriter Joshua James, rescheduled from November 2022; finally, fans of James' work can see him live in Provo. He has been busy the last few years, pumping out music inspired by many facets of life, and proving time and again that he knows how to create work that is relatable and tugs at your heartstrings. His 2019 release Magical Leaves Red White Black Heat is an emotion-filled album touching on love and loss, acceptance, solitude and commitment. James takes listeners through personal experiences on this album along with some great covers, including "This Land is Your Land" by folk legend Woody Guthrie. In 2020, James dropped two full albums featuring loved ones, Joshua James & Nate Pyfer Discover Responsibility Through Fatherhood and Dreams of Karen, the latter featuring James' mom, Reesa. No matter what James does, it seems like we can count on him to be as real and vulnerable as he can be each time we hear something new from him. His music also takes inspiration partly from growing up in the midwest, but Utahns get to claim him as our own now that he resides in American Fork. Based on James' Instagram, it seems like he's back in the studio creating more earnest and heartwarming music. See James at Velour on Saturday, Jan 21 at 8 p.m. Tickets for the all-ages show are $15 and can be found at (EA)

  • Angela Owens
  • Candy

Candy, BIB @ Kilby Court 1/21
"Maybe it takes being pounded over the head with blast beats to do it, but we just want people to feel something," guitarist Michael "Cheddar" Quick told Revolver in 2019. Candy are a hardcore rock group describing themselves as "politically outraged skate kids" who are "shaking up hardcore," according to the same article in Revolver. The group made their debut in 2017, and have been making strides in the hardcore world since. Their 2019 release Good to Feel features such political outrage and anger—if only they knew what 2020 and on would bring. "I think in general people are desensitized to things that we shouldn't be," said vocalist Zak Quiram. "There's children being kidnapped by our government, hate crimes, sexual assault, people dying every day, and we shrug it off because it's such a constant thing. It's pretty sad. But I think the point of music is to make people feel something at the end of the day." Joining the hardcore skaters is fellow hardcore group BIB, whose music features chugging, hardcore riffs, reverb-soaked vocals and an overall sludgy sound. These two groups will complement each other well as they share the bill at Kilby Court on Saturday, Jan 21 at 7 p.m. Tickets for the all-ages show are $15 in advance and $17 at the door. Find tickets at (EA)

Slap Lake City Showcase @ Soundwell 1/19
DJ Juggy has a passion for the local hip-hop scene and putting artists on. Slap Lake City Brings together a fresh line-up of homegrown talent each month in this hip-hop showcase. Juggy (a.k.a. Snacklord) makes it a point to spotlight the next class of music wave makers from the Beehive State. "When I initially put the S.O.S. out there, I had the most submissions that I ever had," said Juggy, who is a constant on Shade 45's weekly Heavy Hitters (Mondays at 5 p.m.). "I try to incorporate Salt Lake City artists in my mix every week." Since its humble beginnings back in 2019, Juggy has managed to morph the Slap Lake City mixtape series into an event that provides a diverse live offering. "I was really blown away about the amount of quality music here. A lot of these guys deserve shine. New artists. OG artists. Every level. Let's put them on stage now," Juggy said. Whether you are a fan of the dirt style, beat-up gritty sounds or want to witness quality control flows, pristine clean singing hooks and punchlines that make listeners ooh and aah, Slap Lake City amplifies big and bold sonic targets in unpredictable ways. It's a place not only for fans of hip-hop, but a spot for people to come out and check what others in the city are doing. Juggy adds, "It's a labor of love, a platform for artists. In the truest sense, it's a community event." To kick off the new year, January's showcase will feature high-energy performances, nothing short of mind blowing. Doors for the event open at 8 p.m. and the show starts at 8:30 p.m. This 21+ show is free, but an RSVP is needed. Find more information can be found at (Mark Dago)