Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Column for May 12, 2010

This week, the southeast Idaho live music scene showcases the music genres for which it is best known, acoustic singer / songwriters, blues, folk and Americana. To sum up, let’s call it groovin’ acoustic.

Senang Wine Bar & Tapas Bistro on S. 1st Avenue in Pocatello continues their weekly live music entertainment with Elvis Has Left the Building, Thursday May 13th, starting at 7:00 p.m. Music entertainment is free and open to customers of all ages.

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.

Elvis Has Left the Building follows up on the following night, at Portneuf Valley Brewing, S. 1st Ave., on Friday the 14th. One of ELB’s award winning songwriters, Angier Wills, will join Randy Johnson and Matt Murdoch on stage at the Portneuf Valley Brewery in a Writer’s in the Round format. Entertainment starts at 8:30 p.m., free and open to the public of all ages. Visit for more.

On Saturday the 15th, Father Bob Forrest and Dr. Bob Fisher will play acoustic folk and rock in the pub, starting at 8:30 p.m. Forrest will be playing his newest custom built instruments at the show.

The locally-based funk and blues band, Phat Bones, is playing on both Friday and Saturday nights at Marigolds Wine and Delicacies, located at 1800 Flandro Dr. in Pocatello, in the Gold's Gym plaza; Marigolds is owned by Stacey Raben and Jean Christensen. Visit for their upcoming events and for more on the band.

Idaho Falls is groovin’ this weekend too. Jeremiah Maxey, from Park City, UT, is scheduled to play at The Cellar in Idaho Falls on Friday the 14th. Preview his music at

And Nick Jaina, from Portland, OR, is at Vino Rosso’s in Idaho Falls on Friday the 14th, with a follow-up show at The Cellar on Saturday the 15th. Jaina is touring in support of his new CD, “A Bird In The Opera House,” a carefully crafted studio album. Learn more at

Rockin’ live music shows are in the works for next week. Tickets are on sale now for Cattle Decapitation, Job for a Cowboy and Whitechapel at the Icon, N. Main Street in Pocatello, for Wednesday the 19th. Tickets available at

Tickets are also on sale now for the iconic metal band, Ratt, in concert at the Idaho Falls Civic Auditorium on Thursday the 10th. The Frank Hannon Band, Frank Hannon of Tesla fame, is on the billing too. Visit, CD World in Idaho Falls or Budget Tapes & Records in Pocatello.

And Idaho Falls Arts Council presents: Riders in the Sky at the Colonial Theater in Idaho Falls on the 20th. Tickets are $28; call (208) 522-0471.

Riders in the Sky is a western music and comedy group originally formed in 1977. Their act is family-friendly; they are sometimes considered a children's band. They have won two Grammy Awards and have written and performed music for major motion pictures, including "Woody's Roundup" from “Toy Story 2” and Pixar's “For the Birds.”

Linda Alexander
a.k.a. Lana Banana for Idaho Live Music

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