By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Steve Brennan
By Joseph Hess
By Allsion Babka
By Kelsey McClure
By RFT Music
By Christian Schaeffer
By Gabriel San Roman
Folk you: Hey, you folks enjoy folk music? Then join local, folkable bands Bricklayer, Boo Hiss, Aid, the Narrows and the Whiskey Ring which proclaims itself "a substance band with a folk problem" at myspace.com/thewhiskeyring at the Ground Floor (215 East Main Street, Belleville, Illinois; 618-277-1026) on Saturday, July 8, for the Belleville Folk Extravaganza!!! (Yep, that's "Extravaganza" with three-count-'em-three exclamation points.) Bands will get folked up promptly at 8 p.m.
Rhymes with "donkey": Goofball acid-rockers the Butthole Surfers are already known for ditties such as "Chewing George Lucas' Chocolate" and "Hurdy Gurdy Man." Now ex-Surfers bassist J.D. Pinkus ups the name game with his band Honky, purveyors of tracks such as "Walkin' on Moonshine" and "Plugs, Mugs and Jugs." Pinkus and Co. throw down a steaming pile of Southern-fried, whiskey-drenched "sleaze rock" at 9 p.m. Wednesday, July 12, at the Way Out Club (2525 South Jefferson Avenue; 314-664-7638).
Meat and greet: Drink specials! Door prizes! The Jeff Gwaltney Band! Hookahs! Canned-ham giveaways! All this and more for only $2! That's right, on Wednesday, July 12, Canned Ham kicks off its summer season with a music showcase featuring Jeff Gwaltney's acclaimed Christian funk at 609 Restaurant's U Lounge (609 Eastgate Avenue; 314-721-9168). Festivities begin at 9:30 p.m. and expire at 1:30 a.m. As for the expiration date on those canned hams? There's no telling.
Master class: During his 40-plus-year career, legendary blues master John Hammond has received Grammy and W.C. Handy accolades, and collaborated with the likes of John Lee Hooker, Howlin' Wolf and Muddy Waters. Pick up a copy of his latest, Ready for Love, when Hammond raises the rafters at Soulard's new Lucas Schoolhouse (1220 Allen Avenue; 314-621-6565) on Wednesday, July 12, at 8 p.m. Show is 21+ only; tickets are $17 in advance or $20 day of show.