Peterson back in town
Billings native Noah Peterson has returned to the Treasure State with some musician friends and a full weekend lineup.
Starting at 9 p.m. Friday at McCleary’s Tavern and then again at 4 p.m. Saturday at Yellowstone Valley Brewing Co., Peterson will join Portland-based Will West and the Friendly Strangers on his soprano sax. Since Will West and the Friendly Strangers regularly alter the form in which the group performs, it is hard to anticipate the band’s membership and instrumental combinations for any specific night. Needless to say, between the band variations and the musicians’ desires to improvise and experiment, the music and shows that come from Will West and the Friendly Strangers are forever evolving.
However, the arrangements that come under this name expose their likenesses through parallel creations of acoustic/Americana/easy-listening/roots music. With relaxed beats and West’s sweet, assuring vocals, Will West and the Friendly Strangers’ music is the macaroni and cheese of music. It is comfort music – never too abrupt or ornamented.
On Sunday, Peterson will collaborate with his trio to perform a more classic style of music – jazz. The Noah Peterson Trio (sax/guitar/bass) will perform a free and public jazz concert at Peterson’s parents’ home, 1025 Evergreen Drive, starting at 4 p.m. The trio will perform original jazz tunes off of Peterson’s albums, “Duos and Trios” and “Live at Marylhurst Drive.”
Every once in a while, you see a band perform and can instantly hear its greatness, the rare manner in which it ascends, in almost every way, above other musical groups. Elephant Revival was one of those bands when it debuted in Billings last spring.
The key, it seems, to this Colorado-based quintet’s refreshing and soothing transcendental folk music is a mindset. Because these immensely gifted multi-instrumentalists create music with a specific purpose, that music – particularly when experienced live – seems to present itself more radically, with a deeper and more authentic amount of life, passion and drive.
“Whether it is distance, personal obstacles or differing states of mind, the contributors to this project are constantly working to break down the barriers in order to remove the obstacles and to embrace the revival,” states the band.
The two female and three male musicians share the vocal roles and roughly a dozen instruments, including mandolin, washboard, fiddle, bass, guitar, electric banjo and more. Between closely knit yet widely independent instrumentation, vocal harmonies and solos of the purest form and a shameless creativity and freshness, Elephant Revival has been awakening audiences of all ages and places to its original music and vocation.
Elephant Revival and its unmatched music return to Yellowstone Valley Brewing Co. today, Aug. 20, for a 5 p.m. performance.
Tuney Awards lineup
As was mentioned in last week’s paper, the ninth annual Tuney Awards will come to life on Saturday, Sept. 19, at Yellowstone Valley Brewing Co. with local musicians, performances, awards and more.
Bands confirmed to perform at this year’s event include Dan Page and the Barn Cats, Peach Pickers, Noise Noise Noise, Matt Rogers and ENDever, with more acts still pending.
The deadline to submit nominations for this year’s ballot is Aug. 22; please see Page 16 of this issue. The official ballot will be available from Aug. 27 through Sept. 9. To access it, pick up a copy of the Aug. 27 or Sept. 3 publications, visit The Outpost’s website at www.billingsnews.com or visit Yellowstone Valley Brewing Co., FOE or Yellowstone Perk. Each of these venues will have copies of the ballot and a slip-drop box for them.