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Logan Fringe Arts Space: Trinidad Theatre Tonight at 9:30 p.m. (free admission)
Clarissa’s Take: Get ready for a night filled with eclectic rhythms and musical improvisation.
Described as “gypsy jazz” on their Facebook page, the Bitter Dose Combo has been combining steady guitar strumming with the use of an accordion and upright bass to deliver fresh melodies since 2008.
The band pairs its swinging rhythms and smooth jazz sounds with the signature vocals of singer Matt Henry to deliver songs like their latest single, “Minor Swing / I Will Survive,” a reimagining of the Gloria Gaynor classic.
In addition to songs like “Swing Gitan” (literally, “Gypsy Swing”) and their modern interpretation of the classic bolero “Bésame Mucho,” Bitter Dose Combo also gives their listeners jazz-standard-like numbers like my personal favorite, “Evenin’.”
While the band cites their main influences as Louis Armstrong, Django Reinhardt, and Fats Waller, it’s easy to see that these guys have carved out a unique sound that is all their own.
The Plank Stompers, who prefer to resist confining themselves to a single genre, can best be described as funky bluegrass with elements of folk and old-time. The three-piece band that once went by the name of the Musty Mountain Plank Stompers hails from Bluemont, Virginia. With their distinctive sound (and look), their guitars and fiddles are sure to get you off your seat. Check out their signature sound in “Green Cat Eyes”:
On their 2014 album The Smartphone EP, the band eschews the entire studio experience by recording their tracks around a smartphone.
Lastly, come out and discover the sounds of the Afrolachian Connection. Their name, a portmanteau of Africa and Appalachia, incorporates musical elements of both traditions. Their diverse sonic background is sure to serve up some funky beats and keep the crowd on their feet.
Come out and see how D.C. bands do barnyard hopping and soul swinging at the Fringe Cabaret finale.
Handout photo of the Plank Stompers by Reed George