Roots Report: Groping Through the Dark

Okee dokee folks… Spring is springing … sort of. Officially spring is about a week away, but I think Mother Nature is going to toy with us for a while longer just because she can. At least the days will be getting longer and it will be lighter out later, which will come in handy in Providence because the new parking meters are difficult to operate in the dark. And this seems to coincide with the meters now being in effect until 9pm. Now I am tall and have pretty good vision, but these meters are kind of high, and in the dark, the screens are not visible at all. Anyone who is shorter or has poor vision must surely be having difficulty with them. I have to get a flashlight out of the car just to be able to read the screen. What genius made these “improvements”?

The new meters take cards and quarters but not bills. When parking is about $1.25 per hour, that is big handful of quarters if you don’t have a card to use. I rarely carry a card with me and I never have fistfuls of quarters! I know that I need to plan ahead better for my forays into the big city, though, because I am a fan of street parking over lot parking. Lot parking prices have gone up too much. The other night I had a gig and parked in a lot that I had parked in for a gig the prior week. The first time they did not charge to park because I was a performer, but this time they wanted $20 for the same spot! Still a performer. Go figure. Anyway, I left and found a spot on the street a few blocks away. I don’t mind the longer walk, but I do mind paying $20 to park. So this is my public service announcement to you all. Bring your credit/debit card or a boatload of quarters and a flashlight. Or if you are Daddy Warbucks you can bring a $20 and park like a king. Read on…

Music at Lily Pads in Peace Dale welcomes back multi-instrumentalist and guitar innovator David Lindley on Saturday, March 25. Lindley is well-known for his many years as an accompanist for Jackson Browne and leader of his own band El Rayo-X. A David Lindley electro-acoustic performance combines American folk, blues and bluegrass traditions with elements from African, Arabic, Asian, Celtic, Malagasy and Turkish musical sources, and he incorporates an array of stringed instruments. David Lindley consistently gives one of the most unique concert experiences available to adventuresome music listeners. For more, resonate to

The Courthouse Center for the Arts (CCA) in West Kingston always has a full calendar of shows to quench your entertainment thirst. For those of you who are secret singers, or maybe not so secret, you can croon to your heart’s content on March 19 from 3:30 – 5pm when CCA presents “A Rodgers & Hammerstein Sunday Sing-Along.” Selections will include well-known songs from Oklahoma, Carousel, South Pacific, The King and I and The Sound of Music. On the evening of March 19, Peppino D’Agostino displays the finger style prowess that has made him one of the world’s greatest guitarists. His hands create magic with his guitar. On March 24, The Courthouse Center will host a fundraiser with music by Neal and the Vipers. There will be light bites, raffles, prizes and fun! For more, ax on over to

The Village presents Pesky J. Nixon on Friday, March 31 at 9pm. “Drawing influences from contemporary urban balladeers, rowdy southern bluegrass and the sardonic yet wry wit of New England’s localized folk scenes, Pesky J. Nixon (PJN) creates an atmosphere both inviting and challenging for audiences. Compelling harmonies and narratives rein in disparate instrumentation including zydeco-style accordion, virtuosic mandolin, a variety of tribal percussion and myriad string instruments. At times putting on a show that borders on brotherly bickering, these boys specialize in bringing the audience into their world, songs and stories.” For more, Watergate your way to:

In the mid and late ’70s, Stevie Nicks, Linda Ronsdadt and The Wilson sisters were radio’s leading ladies of rock. Dreamboat Annie launched Heart and the Wilsons into rock stardom. That album is still one of the best albums to come out of the ’70s. Their follow-up albums continued to produce hit after hit. That powerhouse voice that sent Heart’s songs up the charts is coming to the Park Theatre in Cranston on April 7. Don’t miss this opportunity to see the legendary Ann Wilson in a rare solo appearance. For more, go “Straight On” to

At the Parlour on Thursday, March 16, local musicians will perform a show where they will cover the songs of other local musicians. Performers include Bethany Killian, Tammy Laforest, Jeana Marie, Jenny Bo Benny, Jacob Haller and Chris Monti, and they will play the songs of The Adjuncts, The Throttles, Greg Burgess, Allysen Callery, Jon Campbell, Chris Monti, Sentimental Favorites, Superchief Trio, Jenny White, The Quahogs, Dan White, Chris B Snowflake, Lisa Couto, Great Gale, Sharlene DeNardo, Joseph Paye, Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars, David Haller, Dick Nudenberg, Gabe Luddy, Paul Geremia, Sara Azriel, Sgt. Baker & The Clones, Eric Barao, Nate Cozzolino, Amanda Salemi, Jim Daly and Kris Hansen. For more, folkie-karaoke to

Finally, a few more shows for your consideration. The Kennedys with opener Robinson Treacher will be at Stone Soup Coffeehouse at Slater Mill on Saturday, March 18 ( On Friday, March 24, enjoy an evening with Nashville singer-songwriter Liz Longley and special guest Emily Correia at the The Purple Cat Vineyard & Winery in Chepachet. Indie-Soul band Dwight & Nicole are scheduled for April 14, and Saturday, April 22 has the R&B/Soul singer-songwriter from Boston, Jesse Dee. And, if you are a Jethro Tull fan, then this is a can’t miss show. Tull’s Martin Barre brings his band to the Purple Cat on Friday, April 21 ( My favorite and most influential musical performers are Aztec Two-Step and they will be appearing at the Narrows Center for the Arts on Friday, March 31. They will present their Classic Duos Show featuring songs by Simon & Garfunkel, The Everly Brothers and other iconic duos plus lots of original songs from Aztec Two-Step’s 46-year collaboration. ATS is currently working on an album of all-original songs, the first album of newly recorded material since 2004’s Days of Horses, and the audience will be treated to a preview of a few of these new songs ( No foolin’, Common Fence Music presents Session Americana with Laura Cortese on Saturday, April 1. Performing everything from blues to ballads, folk rock to country, Session Americana deliver a concert experience that is uniquely fun and engaging, or what they themselves describe as a “modern hootenanny” ( The Empire Revue happens at AS220 on Sunday, April 2. This installment of ER is the Recycling Show. This is ALWAYS one of the most enjoyable shows you will see ( Also, on April 2 you can experience “One Night Of Queen” performed by Gary Mullen & The Works at Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel. I am a big Queen fan and was fortunate to have seen them many times back in their heyday. In all honesty, I would rather see a show like this than be duped by Adam Lambert’s “fill in for Freddie role” with the remaining Queen members. But that is just me (!

That’s it for now. Thanks for reading.

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