click to enlarge September music moves
James Armstrong plays his blues this Saturday evening at the Curve Inn.

Here we are wrapping up another month of mighty music-making as we slip on into October for the year of 20 & 23 or the Year of the Rabbit in Chinese culture or 5784 in the recently started Jewish new year. But all that matters not, for we are not here to do a thing except hear music and find out where that stuff is in our little town. So let's do so right now.

Thursday evenings are still booming with live music, and I sure do like the sound of that. For some Latin-flavored "musica," take in the Samba Llamas' sweet samba sounds at BUNN Gourmet (5-7), while Gabriel strums and sings solo (solista) mariachi at El Arriero Mexican restaurant (6-8). Me, Myself & Schy go all-Americana in Boone's beautiful beer garden (6-9) as Jeff Young and the Bad Grandpas go all-American rock on Mowie's stage area (7-10). Dan Grover hosts an open mic for all comers at Casey's Pub (6-9) while Kortney Leatherwood leads a very well-attended, long-running open mic jam at the Blue Grouch (7-11).

Friday runs the gamut (whatever a gamut is) this week as the Wolf Crick Boys float into Mama Lee's Sandbar (4-7), Tom & Geoff turn up at BUNN Gourmet (5-7) and Friday Night Jazz, sponsored by the Springfield Area Arts Council, hosts the inimitable John Coss and his No Jive Blues Band (5:30-7:30).

The next shift kicks in soon after with Elvis Himselvis taking care of business at Harvest Market (6-9), Ambrosia Moon shining on in Chatham at Sangamo Brewing (6-8), Devin Williams and Stumpy Joe slapping the swinging blues around at The Bird Tavern (6-9), UNCHAiNED breaking out at Weebles (6:30-9:30), After Sunset settling in at the Curve (6:30-9:30) and Jeff Young hauling his Bad Grandpas out to Long Bridge (6:30-10:30).

The third shift kicks in with Rhodes & Battles Trio at Ad Astra's Folk Music Fall series (7-9), Angel Brown's Smooth N' Blue Band being smooth and blue at Lime Street (7-10:30), Nick Dittmeier & the Sawdusters cutting up at the Backroom Lounge (7-9) and The Stone Giants going big at the Blue Grouch (7-10). Then it's the Tangents at Mount Pulaski's Next Stop Lounge (8-11) and Fool House reliving the '90s (the 1990s, I think) at Danenbergers (8-10) to mop up on the late shift.

Saturday contains multitudes of cool stuff all day (and night) long from the Waterloo German Band on the Chatham town square (12-4) to John Drake paying the blues dues in Petersburg at 1st & 3rd Boutique and Wine Bar (3:30-6:30), then from Black Dirt Duo plus Brandon Elliot in Petersburg at Broadgauge (7-10) back to Menace to Sobriety on the Chatham town square (6-9) and everything in between.

For a real treat and outright gift to music lovers, James Armstrong makes a way-too-rare local appearance as he hits Saturday at the Curve Inn (6:30-9:30) for some world-renowned blues playing on Ric Major's exquisite sound stage. James took some time off recently and is now back in the thick of it with several mid-October shows lined up around the Midwest before flying off for a busy European tour in November. JA lands back in the 'Patch for a Dec. 4 gig at the Alamo at ICBC's Blue Monday and then makes a run up to Buddy Guy's in the Windy City on Dec. 8. Right on, keep on and play on and on and on for us all, James.

Please check our listings for all the other happenings you definitely don't want to miss. See you in October.

About The Author

Tom Irwin

Tom Irwin, a sixth-generation Sangamon County resident, has played his songs and music for nearly 40 years in the central Illinois area with occasional forays across the country. He's contributed to Illinois Times since 2000 by writing Now Playing, a weekly music column, as well as features stories and other articles...

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