Benson looks like the place to be on Friday, Feb. 3, with Josh Hoyer & Soul Colossal opening for Satchel Grande at The Waiting Room, 8 p.m.
Meanwhile, down the street at the Benson Theatre on Feb. 3, Kris Lager hosts another “Conduit Live” arts showcase. The first two events sold out, so advance tickets are recommended. Watch Lager’s social media and krislager.com for details and ticket announcements. At the core of the rock ‘n’ roll variety show is a group Lager has named The Assembly of Assassins. The players are Michael Pujado (auxiliary percussion), Kevin Lloyd (keys), Travis Potter (trumpet), Caleb Collins (saxophone), vocalists Dani Cleveland, and the rhythm section of Matt Arbeiter (drums) and Joe Donnelly (bass). February’s guest artists are Matt Cox, Ally Peeler and Jason Birnstihl, plus comic Richard Reese, magician Jered The Incredible and live painter Norm4eva.
Nashville’s Mark Stuart plays Duffy’s in Lincoln on Friday, Feb. 3. Presented by the Nebraska Folk & Roots Festival, the 7 p.m. show also features Mike and Kerry Semrad (of The Bottle Tops) and Günter Voelker (of Jack Hotel). Mike Semrad Jr. is the founder of the Nebraska Folk & Roots Festival.
Blue House 33rd Anniversary
At The Jewell, Blue House & the Rent to Own Horns celebrate their 33rd anniversary with two shows Friday, Feb. 3, 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. Led by Joe Putjenter for over three decades, this band has been laying down walloping, horn-driven blues while playing mostly original tunes. In 2022 the group released “Can’t Sit Still, Live at Rainbow Studios.” See jewellomaha.com/shows and bluehouseblues.com.
Blues Society of Omaha Series
This month’s BSO Presents shows start with the Bennett Matteo Band at The Jewell on Thursday, Feb. 9, 6-9 p.m. The group is led by the husband-wife team of guitarist/songwriter Gino Matteo and vocalist Jade Bennett. Mateo was with Sugaray Rayford’s band for over 10 years. Their new disc was co-produced by blues guitarist Kid Andersen, who put the recording in front of Mike Zito. Zito’s Gulf Coast Records label is releasing the new record, “Shake the Roots.”
Blues-rock guitarist Alastair Greene is an exciting player who has worked with Sugaray Rayford and the Alan Parsons Live Project. Greene plugs in Thursday, Feb. 16, 6-9 p.m., at The Jewell. His CD “Alive in the New World” was produced by Tab Benoit and released in January.
Fantastic blues harmonica player and multiple Blues Music Award nominee Brandon Santini is up Thursday, Feb. 23, 6-9 p.m., also at The Jewell. His latest disc is “The Longshot,” a project that celebrates both his blues and rock influences.
Find all the BSO shows at facebook.com/bluessocietyofomaha plus a curated list of local shows at omahablues.com. Check the rest of this month’s Jewell events at jewellomaha.com/shows, including the BSO series plus performances by Big Wade & Black Swan Theory, Kris Lager solo and other great soul, jazz and Latin acts.
Des Moines’ Winter Blues Fest
Central Iowa Blues Society’s annual Winter Blues Fest on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 10-11, at the Des Moines Downtown Marriott is a great destination event. A weekend pass is $55 in advance at cibs.org, on which you can also find schedule and hotel information. Hotel rooms go fast and reservations must be made separate from the festival ticket purchase.
The lineup features 20 acts under one roof with national artists of note including the duo of Mike Zito and Albert Castiglia, the Nick Moss Band featuring Dennis Gruenling, The Dig 3, Lil’ Ed & the Blues Imperials, Ana Popovic, Joanna Connor and Alastair Greene. Omaha’s Héctor Anchondo and Lincoln’s In the Pocket feat Nebraska Jr are also on the schedule.
Lincoln’s Zoo Bar schedule includes a Tuesday, Feb. 7, 6-9 p.m., show with roots artists Amy LaVere and Will Sexton. LaVere is an acclaimed songwriter and vocalist whose performances have been called “hypnotic, mesmerizing and legendary.” Her husband, Will Sexton, the brother of Charlie Sexton, has his own long list of credits. Will Sexton produced LaVere’s latest disc, “Painting Blue.” They have been seen in the area as a popular booking in the Omaha Sunday Roadhouse concert series.
Save the dates for the Zoo Bar’s 50th anniversary street festival Friday and Saturday, July 7-8. See zoobar.com and facebook.com/zoobarblues.
Lincoln Exposed happens Feb. 9-Feb. 12 with various styles of music at multiple downtown venues. Look up Lincoln Exposed 2023 on Facebook for schedules.
Mouth of the South in the Old Market, 1111 Howard St., hosts a blues brunch Sundays, usually 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. There is also a special Valentine’s night show, Tuesday, Feb. 14, 7 p.m., with Héctor Anchondo.
Remember The B. Bar’s schedule includes 5:30 p.m. Friday shows every week. See thebbaromaha.com/events.