The Goddamn Ranchhand Band plays with Stumblebum Brass Band at the Blue Grouch this Saturday night.

Here we are winding down in the last weekend of February for 2024. I sincerely can't remember when our shortest month was as chock-full of live music as this one. Let's hope it's a harbinger of the year to come with more good stuff on the way. For now, we can take a look at what's booked in the upcoming week.

This Thursday, make a point to go see Don't Tell Me No: The Life of Florence Price in Music and Song, a wonderfully inspiring, totally true and mostly unknown story of the life of Florence B. Price. Known as the first Black female musician and composer to gain national recognition, Price was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, in 1887 and died in Chicago in 1953 with a rich history of fighting racism, creatively living and making music in between. The program will be presented from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Feb. 22 at First Presbyterian Church with spoken word and the lyrics of her compositions by ensembles of the Springfield Choral Society, along with Tiffany Williams and Reggie Guyton.

Thursdays are always a good indicator of what's happening on the scene and why I like to spill the beans on this particular day of the week so often. This week is a good example of diverse performances with Manny Lee at Casa Real, Solista Mariachi Gabriel at El Arriero, Savanna Chestnut and The Field Hands at the Backroom Lounge in Riverton and Tom Irwin (me!) at Crows Mill Pub. Plus, we have open mics and karaoke nights happening as well.

In a couple of early evening Friday shows, here comes Footprints, with Virgil Rhodes, a longtime, Springfield favorite jazz ensemble, making an appearance at Boone's for the Friday Night Jazz and Blues music series (5:30-7:30 p.m.) and Timo Arthur bringing his guitar, voice and exceptional music (6-9) to the upstairs Farmhouse Brews stage at Harvest Market. Next, a veritable parade of top, talented local bands begins with Deja Voodoo at the Curve Inn (6-10), then veers out north to Weebles with Branded (7-10), lands at VFW Post 755 with The Red Ribbon Revue, slides into Goodfellas with Lincoln's Dead (8-11) and rolls into George Rank's with Jay Larson Band (8-11). Off the Wall bounces into Motorheads (8-11) to continue the cavalcade, and as OtW hits the milestone of a decade of existing, Eric Austin will join in on the drums while longtime skins man Fred Edmunds takes a break to work through some health issues and Janet Morris (of F5 and other groups) takes over in the female lead vocal spot. And to top off your Friday night, the new kids on the block in the local music band world, Silhouette, bring their fresh look and young sound to the Blue Grouch (7-10).

Saturday night gives us plenty of super-duper local combos at various venues and a couple of other shows to contemplate attending. The Gin Mill plays host to a rocking lineup of Los Injectors, The Lovelorn and Arrowhead Drive for an area-based, all-original music concert. Then in a far-from-home showing, the Blue Grouch presents The Goddamn Ranchhand Band from Alaska and The Stumblebum Brass Band from the Bronx in New York City, on tour through the Midwest before ending back in Anchorage by March 3 for a gig at Van's Dive Bar. These friendly, in-your-face bands have info on YouTube and Facebook if you want to see what all the fuss is about.

Oops, I did it again and frontloaded my column so do me a favor (and yourself) and look up all the other good stuff happening in our music listings. See you on leap day.

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