Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Column for July 22, 2009

Pocatello’s favorite Pocatello-native country star, Rocky Watson, is the featured performer at tonight’s Revive @ Five concert, hosted by the Bannock Civitans at the Old Town Pavilion, Main Street in Pocatello (map). The evening is sponsored by the Idaho Central Credit Union and catered by the Sand Trap, 5 to 8 p.m.

Rocky Watson, a solo performer, has a new CD for sale this year, “Rocky Watson Productions,” featuring his original song, “Mamma Told Me.” In concert, he plays a variety of country, R&B, blues and rock from the 50’s through the 70’s. Some of his most popular songs are “Pretty Woman,” “Brown Eyed Girl” and his signature song, “Cowboy.” He is most popular for his versatility and vocal talent.

“One of the many highlights in my career was winning ‘Country Star Search’ and appearing on the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, TN,” Watson recalls. “I remember watching my wife, Patricia, pitching my songs to record label executives back stage.” Pat wasn’t supposed to be backstage, but she got it done. Another career highlight for Watson was performing at the Stephens Performing Arts Center to a sold-out crowd. Find out more at

Thursday’s concert on the ISU Quad (map) features David Campbell, from Seymor, IN, with Pocatell-based Greyhouse Effect opening. Music starts at 6:00 p.m., free and open to the public.

Campbell taught himself to play guitar when he was thirteen. He started writing songs, influenced by John Mayer, Jack Johnson, John Fogerty, and Prince. Campbell says, "I really enjoy taking a song that is on the radio and making it my own. I'll take something I hear off the radio and reproduce it on the acoustic guitar even though the song may not have acoustic guitar. It may just be piano or bass or synthesizers."

Whether playing endearing originals or covering everything from Otis Redding to Outkast, David Campbell ensures that audiences will have an experience like no other. More at

Opening, Greyhouse Effect is a solo act by Joe Hunt. He’s currently putting together a 3-piece configuration with bass and drums and continuing to write new songs as he prepares for the next incarnation of the band. Visit Hunt online at

Elvis Has Left The Building, or ELB as they are known, has been a long-standing favorite music group in Southeast Idaho. This week, ELB is playing at Sandbaggers on Yellowstone (map) on Thursday the 23rd at 8 p.m. and on Friday the 24th at Portneuf Valley Brewing on S. 1st Avenue in Pocatello (map) at 8:30 p.m.

ELB plays original acoustic Americana. “We'll do an occasional cover song if there's a specific reason, but basically all of the material that we do is our own. Each of us has played in cover bands where the goal is to play popular songs that everybody knows,” says Angier Wills. “However, after you've written several hundred songs, I think that eventually the idea of sharing whatever it is that you're trying to say becomes much more important than just playing songs that an audience might want to hear. We are very thankful for people letting us play our own music over the years, and generally being supportive of that. It also helps that we have no desire to give up our day jobs.”

Based in Pocatello, Wills is joined by Greg Mladenka and Bill Chalmers to form Elvis Has Left The Building, taking turns playing guitar, mandolin and bass. Their intention is to make the listener think about something that they may have forgotten to think about the first time around. “Greg and I are very opinionated people.” Wills commented, “and we certainly don't expect everyone to agree with what our songs are saying. But we do hope that we can get people thinking about things.”

More than a few of ELB’s songs are about things like small towns in Idaho, backcountry skiing, Ernest Hemmingway, vanishing Salmon, avalanches, and local politics. With three CD’s under their belt and a fourth due out this fall, Elvis Has Left The Building has a loyal core group of listeners, many of whom are also musicians.

And on Saturday the 25th, the newly re-formatted Benton Street Bar & Grill on S. 2nd Ave. (map), now a non-smoking establishment, is pleased to bring Shawn Good and John Shipe to their stage. Both musicians are acoustic guitar, singer / songwriters. Music starts at 9:00 p.m., $3 for those 21 and over and $5 for those under 21. Find out more at

Linda Alexander
"Lana Banana" for Idaho Live Music

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