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27

S U N D A Y

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Few country or folk songwriters meld despair and catchy hooks as attractively as Steve Earle. The tattooed Texan’s brutal, beautiful “Someday” was bouncy enough for Shawn Colvin to cover, though her saccharine delivery quashed much of the desperation Earle built into it. Earle’s off MCA now, thanks in no small part to his having logged more rehab stints and divorces than tours in recent years. But there are some signs that Earle is finally starting to settle down: His first album for the Winter Harvest label, Train a-Comin’, is a collection of mostly old Earle tunes re-recorded in an acoustic setting. He’s now touring with the same stellar folkie combo—mandolin player Peter Rowan, guitarist Norman Blake, and bassist Roy Huskey—that backs him on the album. At 8 p.m. at the Birchmere, 3901 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria. $19.50. (703) 549-5919. (Dave McKenna)