Halloween falls on Thursday night and there are lots of roots music events to get your boooos on. The 21st Saloon hosts a Halloween Party with Braille Blues Daddy Bryan Lee & The Blues Power Band. The New Orleans guitarist is touring behind Play One For Me (Severn). Eric Clapton calls Lee “one of the best bluesman I have ever heard.” See braillebluesdaddy.com.
Meanwhile Lincoln has two parties. The Zoo Bar’s 6-9 p.m. show offers roots bands Bud Heavy & the High Lifes and Root Marm Chicken Farm Jug Band. Then the official Halloween Bash kicks off with A Ferocious Jungle Cat and the Zoo debut of New York’s Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds. Critics and fans are raving about Sister Sparrow’s funk-laced R&B and dance-inducing grooves.
Kris Lager Band presents a 9 p.m. Halloween party at Lincoln’s Bourbon Theatre with The Giving Tree. Admission is only $5 day of show if you are in costume.
Living Colour plays a 25th anniversary reunion show on Halloween at Waiting Room, 9 p.m. Voodoo Method opens.
The Horseshoe Casino’s Whiskey Roadhouse in Council Bluffs presents guitar star Steve Vai, 8 p.m. See horseshoecouncilbluffs.com.
The Sunday Roadhouse concert series brings back Robbie Fulks Sunday, Nov. 3, 5 p.m. at The Waiting Room. Fulks’ tenth disc is Gone Away Backward (Bloodshot). Reviewers praise Fulks’ “sharper-than-a-tack, wry genius, gold-dusted vocals and prodigious guitar pickin’” and his shows match his fine musicianship with clever, witty humor. Spin magazine calls Fulks “America’s most unjustly unsung singer/songwriter.” See sundayroadhouse.com. Bill Kirchen is up on Sunday, Nov. 17, also at The Waiting Room.
Indigenous Headlines Toy Drive
Mark your calendar now for Sunday, Dec. 8, when Mato Nanji and Indigenous headline the 11th Annual Toy Drive for Pine Ridge to benefit the children and families on the Pine Ridge Reservation. This year there is one event at Sokol Hall. See toydriveforpineridge.com. I’ll be joining Larry (Lash LaRue) Dunn and many musical guests Dec. 8 on Rick Galusha’s “Pacific Street Blues” radio program on KIWR, 89.7 The River, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Excellent jump-blues guitarist Rockin’ Johnny Burgin was here last spring with the legendary Tail Dragger and performed locally with OEA Blues Nominee Honeyboy Turner Band. Burgin started out playing in the West Side Chicago clubs. Burgin and top Canadian bluesman J.W. Jones share the bill at The 21st Saloon Thursday, Nov. 7, 6-9 p.m. Jones also plays Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Wednesday, Nov. 6, 6-9 p.m.