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Music roundup for Sept. 19, 2013

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By Bill Livick, Special to The Gazette
September 18, 2013

Krista Detor at 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20, Cafe Carpe, 18 S. Water St., Fort Atkinson. Tickets: $12. Call 920-563-9391.

Indiana-based singer-songwriter Krista Detor began learning to play piano before her 10th birthday and started writing songs a few years later.

She began performing on stage as a teenager in her native California and later traveled the world playing music.

Detor settled in Indiana at the start of 2000 to focus on a recording career. Faced with the daunting prospect of landing a contract in a crowded and competitive industry, she chose to self-release her 2003 debut, “A Dream in a Cornfield.” She wrote it with musician/producer David Weber, and the duo’s diverse songwriting drew from blues, folk, country, rock and jazz. Detor’s rich vocals and earthy piano playing helped bring the characters populating her songs to life.

Detor and Weber teamed up again on her second album, “Mudshow,” which came three years later and received wider distribution through CoraZong Records. The music might have been more restrained this time around, but melodically and lyrically, Detor eclipsed her previous recording with an enthralling collection of original songs.

She and Weber released their next album, “Cover Their Eyes,” in 2007. The album reached No. 1 on the Euro-Americana chart.

Detor was discovered in Europe long before gaining similar recognition in the U.S.

In March 2009, she was chosen to be a part of the Darwin Songhouse. She and seven other songwriters wrote a song a day for one week to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin in Shrewsbury, England. The event produced a concert and live CD.

Detor released her fourth album, “Chocolate Paper Suites,” in March 2010. The album features five three-song suites, each connected by theme and/or imagery, inspired by the works of the poets Garcia Lorca and Dylan Thomas, as well as Darwin and other thinkers.

Buddy Guy & Jonny Lang at 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21, Overture Hall, Overture Center for the Arts, 201 State St., Madison. Tickets: $35.50-$89.50. Call 608-258-4141.

Chicago blues legend Buddy Guy got his start in music some 40 years before blues guitarist Jonny Lang, but the two have at least a few things in common.

Both have toured with and opened shows for the Rolling Stones, and both have been recognized as being among the best guitarists of their generations. Eric Clapton once called Guy “the greatest living guitarist,” and Clapton invited Lang to be among a select group to perform in his highly acclaimed Crossroads Guitar Festival in 2004.

Lang, 32, hails from North Dakota and began learning guitar at age 13. He moved to Minneapolis in 1995 and in 1997 released his debut album, “Lie To Me,” which reached No. 1 on Billboard’s New Artist Chart.

Besides stellar guitar playing, Lang possesses a powerful voice with remarkable range. Performing live, he can alternate between the gravelly voice of an old bluesman and an angelic falsetto with perfect pitch.

Lang has released five studio albums and one live recording since 1997. His new album, “Fight for My Soul,” was released this week and features a diverse array of styles, from blues and funk to soul and R&B.

In an interview, Lang said he writes the basic melodies and lyrics and then brings them to his band to be fleshed out and recorded.

“I write the best song that I can, and when it comes to recording it, I play it for the rest of the guys on acoustic guitar or piano and then let them interpret it,” he said.

“I just kind of let them do what they want with it. There’s nothing better than getting musicians that you know and trust and just letting it come together as a group effort.”

“When it comes to interpreting a song in the studio, I’m pretty open,” he added. “It can go in pretty much any direction stylistically as long as it feels right. The key is having the right people in the band.”

Lang’s latest album is his first studio recording in seven years, as he and his wife have been busy raising their four children. He said while he’s continued to tour, finding the time to make an album has been a challenge.

“There’s not enough time in the day to do everything,” he said. “I know plenty of kids who are like rock star widows. I don’t want my kids to grow up and say Dad was never really around.”

Lang said he’s been pleased with early praise for his new record. “It’s been the most positive of any album,” he said. “I’ve been shocked at how much people have liked it.”

The Black Crowes at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 22, Orpheum Theater, 216 State St., Madison. Tickets: $37.50. Call Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000.

The Black Crowes burst onto the rock music scene in the late 1980s and early ’90s as nearly an overnight sensation.

The band’s first album, “Shake Your Money Maker,” debuted at No. 4, sold more than 1 million copies and won it the title of “best new American band” in Rolling Stone magazine’s critics and readers polls.

Led by brothers Chris and Rich Robinson, the band’s second album, “The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion,” entered the Billboard pop albums chart at No. 1.

The Black Crowes’ music ranges from psychedelic-era hard rock to Southern rock and classic ’70s rock.

The group’s 1994 album, “Amorica,” reached No. 11 and two years later, the band released “Three Snakes and One Charm,” which peaked at No. 15.

The Black Crowes released the album “Lions” in 2001, which reached No. 20, and then took a three-year hiatus. They regrouped in 2006 and performed until 2009, when they took another three-year break. The Black Crowes have released a total of nine studio albums.

Widespread Panic at 7 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 26-28, The Riverside Theater, 116 W. Wisconsin Ave., Milwaukee. Tickets: $40. Call 414-286-3663.

Since forming in 1986, Widespread Panic has released 11 studio albums, eight live albums and sold more than 3 million records.

Like the Black Crowes, Widespread Panic got started in the late 1980s and by the early ’90s was recognized as a master of Southern rock. The band is also known on the jam band scene and holds the record for the highest number of sold-out shows (42) at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre near Denver.

With a willingness to improvise at the heart of its live shows, Widespread Panic—John Bell (guitars, vocals), JoJo Hermann (keyboards, vocals), Jimmy Herring (guitars), Todd Nance (drums, vocals), Sunny Ortiz (percussion, vocals) and Dave Schools (bass)—has become one of the rock world’s most popular bands. That explains why Milwaukee’s Riverside Theater booked the band for three consecutive nights.

The band has undergone two major changes over its career. In early 2002, original band member and guitarist Michael Houser was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He continued to tour until July 2002, when his declining health forced him to resign.

Widespread Panic then used guitarist George McConnell for a few years. He left in 2006 and was replaced by current lead guitarist Jimmy Herring.

The band has taken several relatively brief hiatuses over the years, including most of 2012. Members began touring again with a run of Midwest and Southern shows beginning in April.



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