This Month in Music: July 2016

Bob Dylan
Widely held as one of the greatest songwriters of all time, and one of the most influential, Bob Dylan just keeps going, so much so that his shows are referred to as the “Never Ending Tour.” Despite longevity, Dylan’s best days aren’t behind him, as his new music remains critically-acclaimed. A copy of his latest album, Fallen Angels, is included with a ticket. With Mavis Staples. 7:30 p.m. show. $45-$100. Wolf Trap Filene Center: 1551 Trap Rd. Vienna, VA;

Austin duo Greyhounds describes their sound as “Hall and Oates meet ZZ Top.” It’s an apt description of the group’s first three albums for Memphis-based Ardent records. Comprised only of guitarist Andrew Trube and singer-keyboardist Anthony Farrell, Greyhounds’ sound is much bigger than the sum of its parts. Texas blues rock hero Gary Clark Jr. – also of Austin – recently tweeted “Greyhounds are crushing it – as usual” during one of their live performances in Los Angeles. With Bobby Thompson. 8 p.m. show. $10-$12. Gypsy Sally’s: 3401 K St. NW, DC;

Zella Day
Zella Day hails from a small town in the beautiful high-desert mountains north of Phoenix, Ariz., where her parents owned the only coffeehouse in town. Day’s pretty, ethereal songs certainly reflect her organic upbringing. Since, she’s moved to Los Angeles and added modern, electric beats and instrumentation to her folk songs, creating an intriguing hybrid of styles. The fetching chanteuse made a splash at this year’s Coachella festival and her single “Jameson,” about a lover’s fight with alcoholism, generated colossal critical buzz. 7 p.m. show. $20. U Street Music Hall: 1115 U St. NW, DC;

Guided by Voices
Playing for more than 30 years, Guided by Voices has held one constant – frontman and songwriter Robert Pollard. The Dayton, Ohio indie rock band has released 24 albums, from lo-fi independent releases to major label ones. Now, Pollard is back with a new lineup and album. With Nap Eyes. 7 p.m. doors. $35. 9:30 Club: 815 V St. NW, DC;

Budweiser’s Bud & Burgers Music Party
Sitting around a record player with family members, you often hear arguments from the different generations about whose music was truly the most wonderful. Mom and Dad relish the big hair and bouncy tunes from the 80s, while you cling to your flannels and faded Nirvana T-shirts and hum 90s jams. With Budweiser’s Bud & Burgers party, music from the 80s, 90s and 2000s will battle it out for attendees. Musical acts include acts The Reflex, As If, Lloyd Dobler Effect, White Ford Bronco, DJ Chris Styles and DJ Pat Premier. Gates open at 11:30 a.m., show from 12-5 p.m. $20-$25. Nationals Park:1500 S. Capitol St. SE, DC;  

David Bazan
David Bazan is best known as the frontman and creative force behind acclaimed indie rockers Pedro the Lion. Bazan set that long-running project aside nearly a decade ago but, as a solo artist, the Seattle native continues to craft deep, dark and often beautiful rock songs that ponder some of life’s big questions through deeply introspective lyrics and swirling sounds. Bazan’s stage show is razor sharp from relentless touring, which promises a dynamic performance at the Black Cat this month. With Laura Gibson, Dave Hill and Church Night. 8 p.m. doors. $20. The Black Cat: 1811 14th St. NW, DC;

Emily King
Born and raised in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Emily King’s music often features soft vocals coupled with peaceful strums of a guitar. Whether you’re able to scurry down to 9:30 and see this soulful vocalist live, or if you’re in need of a gentle tune on the Metro during your commute, you could do far worse than listening to this upcoming NYC native. She even has pop star Sam Smith’s approval: “Unreal talent. In complete awe of this girl.” With PJ Morton. 7 p.m. doors. $25. 9:30 Club: 815 V St. NW, DC;

Shenandoah Run
Shenandoah Run, a nine-piece folk band, often provides twangy tributes to traditional and contemporary folk music with a jolt, but this concert features a hearty dose of sentimental value. A portion of the proceeds go to Montgomery County Partners for Animal Wellness, a partner of the Montgomery County Animal Services & Adoption Center, and the goal is to benefit the animals residing in the shelter. So when you’re out on the floor two-stepping to these banjos, enjoy the added good feels of doing so for a cause. 8 p.m. show. $30-$40. AMP by Strathmore: 11810 Grand Park Ave. North Bethesda, MD;

Steely Dan
Known for their groundbreaking 1970s albums, Steely Dan took a hiatus from 1981 to 1993. Since then, they’ve been touring and recording, and now they come to our area on their “The Dan Who Knew Too Much Tour 2016.” Also appearing is legendary soul/pop musician Steve Winwood. 7 p.m. show. Tickets start at $32. Jiffy Lube Live:7800 Cellar Door Dr. Bristow, VA;

Wesley Stace
Wesley Stace has used the stage name John Wesley Harding on his previous albums. He took the name from the Bob Dylan album of the same name, which was named after an outlaw named John Wesley Hardin (Dylan added the “g” by accident). Confusing? Yes, but all you need to know is you should go check out this British-born folk/pop singer-songwriter. With Luke Mitchem. 7:30 p.m. show. $20. Jammin’ Java:227 Maple Ave. E. Vienna, VA;

Ray Wylie Hubbard
As one of the original purveyors of the “outlaw” movement that defined Texas country singer-songwriters in the 1970s, Ray Wylie Hubbard is perhaps best known for writing “Up Against the Wall, Redneck Mother” – a song made famous by Jerry Jeff Walker. More than 40 years later, Hubbard remains a potent musical force. His 2015 release,The Ruffian’s Misfortune, delivered some gritty, hard-rocking country and blues numbers, punctuated by odes to muscle cars and female rockers like Joan Jett and Chrissie Hynde. The album also made several critics’ year-end lists of best releases of 2015. 9:30 p.m. $22-$35. Hill Country BBQ: 410 7th St. NW, DC;  

Vans Warped Tour
The longest-running music festival in America – billed as “punk rock summer camp on wheels” –stops at Merriweather Post Pavilion this month to showcase dozens of energetic young rock bands, as well as the occasional hip-hop artist. Among the big draws this year are Falling in Reverse, Four Year Strong, Less Than Jake, New Found Glory, Reel Big Fish, Set It Off, Sum 41, We the Kings and Yellowcard. It’s hard to believe it’s been 19 years since this perennial summer tour first launched, and it’s always fun to see which of the young up-and-comers will use the festival as a springboard to greater national recognition. 11 a.m. doors. $41.50-$51.50. Merriweather Post Pavilion: 10475 Little Patuxent Pkwy. Columbia, MD;

Curtis McMurtry
Curtis McMurtry’s father, James, is one of America’s finest songwriters, and it seems the younger McMurtry paid close attention growing up. His debut solo album,Respectable Enemy, chronicles the lives of unapologetically bitter people still haunted by the ghosts of lovers and former friends. From the doomed narrator of “Foxhole” to the resigned nostalgia of “Eleanor’s House,” McMurtry’s songs aim to break your heart. The young singer-songwriter earned a degree in ethnomusicology from Sarah Lawrence College, and the classical training shows in his uncommon craftsmanship. 8 p.m. show. $12. IOTA Club & Cafe: 2832 Wilson Blvd. Arlington, VA;

Sunday Funday with Honor by August and Air Traffic Controller
In recent years, the term “Sunday Funday” has become part of the vernacular among Americans who prefer to keep their weekend party going until the end. Local musical favorites Honor by August and Boston’s Air Traffic Controller will provide the soundtrack to the good times on the third Sunday of this month. Michael Pearsall, Honor by August’s lead vocalist and guitarist, knows how to work the stage. Plus, the band has packed the 9:30 Club and shared stages with Bon Jovi and Third Eye Blind. Air Traffic Controller’s eclectic song catalog and category-defying organic, electronic sound earned them a spot on NPR’s “hotlist” at last year’s SXSW in Austin. 6:30 p.m. show. $20-$30. Jammin’ Java: 227 Maple Ave. E. Vienna, VA;

Azealia Banks
Twitter’s queen of confrontation is about to set the Black Cat stage ablaze with furious rhymes and beautiful melodies. Regardless of your opinion on her social media presence, Banks’ penchant for creating dope music is undeniable, with award nominations from BET, Billboard and BBC. Even though she hasn’t produced an album since 2014’s Broke with Expensive Taste, the Manhattan native has tallied up a number of singles and features since. If her live shows are half as explosive as her Twitter feed, then this is a must-see. 7:30 p.m. doors. $30. The Black Cat: 1811 14th St. NW, DC;

EmiSunshine (born Emilie Sunshine Hamilton) is a country singer from Tennessee whose videos have gone viral, and she’s only 11 years old. Whether singing her “old time music” on NBC’s Today show, at the Grand Ole Opry or taking the stage at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium, she is fearless, confident and firm in her musical direction. 7:30 p.m. show. $15. Jammin’ Java: 227 Maple Ave. E. Vienna, VA;

The Bacon Brothers
You know one of the brothers, at least. Kevin Bacon of film, TV and the “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon” game. But you may not know that he’s a musician too, and has been playing with his brother Michael as The Bacon Brothers since 1995. Their blend of folk, rock, soul and country continues to impress and make people realize Kevin isn’t just a movie star. Also appearing Saturday and Sunday; tickets are currently available for Friday and Sunday. 7:30 p.m. show. $45. The Birchmere: 3701 Mt. Vernon Ave. Alexandria, VA;

Lera Lynn
Americana singer Lera Lynn got a jump start on her career when she was tapped to be involved in the second season of HBO’s hit show True Detective. She appeared as a barroom singer and contributed original songs to the show’s soundtrack, which she wrote with T Bone Burnett and Rosanne Cash. Her newest album is this year’s Resistor. With Andrew Combs. 8 p.m. $15-$35. The Hamilton: 600 14th St. NW, DC;

Trixie Whitley
The late postmodern bluesman Chris Whitley was a genre-bending troubadour, and his daughter, Trixie, has apparently inherited the knack. A former house music DJ, Whitley’s musical stylings vary, reflecting electronica, R&B, folk and the chaos of punk rock. Flaunting a strong and emotional alto singing voice, Whitley has worked with iconic producer Daniel Lanois and shared stages with Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Emmylou Harris. If you like the sound of Grace Potter, Susan Tedeschi or even Adele, check out Whitley’s set this month at Rock & Roll Hotel. 8 p.m. show. $15. Rock & Roll Hotel: 1353 H St. NE, DC;  

Sufjan Stevens
Getting praise from Pitchfork is sometimes a difficult task for an upcoming artist, but for Sufjan Stevens, it was par for the course as he continues to stack up accolades on his proverbial mantle. With soothing vocals and an almost timid pace, Stevens produces thoughtful lyrics on subjects like love, family and death. With heavy subject matter, it’s paramount that his music maintain an ounce of joy, and this indie artist straddles this line as well as any. With Thao & The Get Down Stay Down. 8 p.m. show. $35-$65. Wolf Trap Filene Center: 1551 Trap Rd. Vienna, VA;

B.J. the Chicago Kid
A slew of high-profile hip-hop collaborators – Big K.R.I.T., Chance the Rapper and Grammy Award winner Kendrick Lamar among them – helped put B.J. the Chicago Kid on the musical map. But the young artist is a soul singer at heart. He released his major label debut – the modern yet deeply soulful In My Mind – on Motown earlier this year, and in May he contributed to the label’s new Marvin Gaye tribute album. B.J. the Chicago Kid comes from a long line of soul singers who honed their craft in a church choir, but his hip-hop sensibility gives the music a streetwise swagger. With Elhae and Tish Hyman. 7 p.m. show. $20. U Street Music Hall: 1115 U St. NW, DC;

Brandi Carlile & Old Crow Medicine Show with Dawes
This triple bill at Wolf Trap might just be the Americana show of the summer. Carlile is a singer-songwriter of the first order who can shift from emotive and plaintive to exuberant and hard-rocking in the space of a single song. Old Crow Medicine Show’s most famous tune is the undeniably catchy “Wagon Wheel,” but they have a deep catalogue of inspired, organic roots music. Dawes has emerged as a worthy successor to the Laurel Canyon-inspired sound created by Jackson Browne, Graham Parsons, Townes Van Zandt and others in 1970s-era Southern California. 6:30 p.m. show. $45-$75. Merriweather Post Pavilion: 10475 Little Patuxent Pkwy. Columbia, MD;

Joseph Arthur
Hailing from Akron, Ohio, Joseph Arthur has released more than 13 albums and EPs – and also works as an artist and designer. Arthur is praised by fans and fellow musicians alike, having been discovered by Peter Gabriel in the mid-90s and signed to his Real World label. He also has side projects Fistful of Mercy with Dhani Harrison and Ben Harper, and RNDM with Pearl Jam’s Jeff Ament. Check out brand new songs from his most recent album, The Family, at Jammin’ Java. 6:30 p.m. show. $18. Jammin’ Java:227 Maple Ave. E. Vienna, VA;

Huey Lewis & The News
Huey Lewis started out as an engineering student at Cornell University, and if he had stayed, things would’ve turned out very differently. Cornell’s loss became our gain, as Lewis churned out the hits in the 80s. Songs like “I Want a New Drug” and “If This Is It” were MTV and radio staples, and Lewis refuses to stop. With Jamie Kent. 8 p.m. show. $25-$50. Wolf Trap Filene Center: 1551 Trap Rd. Vienna, VA;

With an album just released, this one-of-a-kind tour is not one to miss. A supergroup featuring Neko Case (known for her solo albums and also her work with New Pornographers), k.d. lang (four-time Grammy winner) and Laura Veirs (indie folk star), this project began with a simple email from lang to the others saying “I think we should make a record together.” With Andy Shauf. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. doors. $59-$79. The Lincoln Theatre: 1215 U St. NW, DC;

Brooklyn-based Quilt released their third album, Plaza, last year and the band’s neo-psychedelic sound continues to gain major acclaim in the national press. It’s sometimes difficult to tell whether the band is intentionally retro or simply churning out creative new interpretations of classic sounds that evoke The Doors, The Mamas & the Papas and Jefferson Airplane. The instrumentation is tight and lead singer Anna Fox Rochinski’s smooth, sultry voice – complimented by sometimes soaring harmonies from her bandmates – commands your attention. With Big Thief. $15. 8 p.m. show.Rock & Roll Hotel: 1353 H St. NE, DC;

Swans is an experimental rock band that came out of New York City’s “no wave” movement in the early 1980s and lasted until 1997, when they disbanded. In 2010, the underground legends reunited and continue to make their unique brand of noisy, avant-garde music. Led by singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Michael Gira, Swans are known for experimental instrumentation and repetitive song structures. The group counts The Stooges, Brian Eno and early Pink Floyd as influences. Gira has described the band’s name as synonymous with its music:  “Swans are majestic, beautiful looking creatures…with really ugly temperaments.” With Okkyung Lee. 7 p.m. doors. $35. 9:30 Club: 815 V St. NW, DC;

It’s rare for a band to go nearly 30 years and still fly under the commercial radar. Bloodkin has not only survived, but thrived in their adopted hometown – the musical mecca of Athens, Ga. Southern rock infuses Bloodkin’s sound, but their ragged, guitar-driven tunes also owe a debt to blues and, occasionally, even punk rock. With Koa. 9 p.m. show. $12-$14. Gypsy Sally’s: 3401 K St. NW, DC;  

Femi Kuti & The Positive Force
The son of legendary Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti, Femi Kuti carries on his great father’s legacy. Starting at the age of 15 in his father’s band, Femi has been carving his own path ever since. He’s toured with the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Jane’s Addiction, and even opened his own club called The Shrine in his native Lagos, Nigeria. With DJ Dlaspora. 8 p.m. doors. $35. 9:30 Club: 815 V St. NW, DC;

Rich Robinson
Since the seemingly permanent breakup of The Black Crowes, guitarist Rich Robinson has emerged as an accomplished solo artist with four studio records to his name. The iconic, muscular style that Robinson displayed with the Crowes still shows up from time-to-time, but his solo work is often quieter, with more of a folk and even gospel feel. Rich Robinson can’t match the vocal prowess of his brother, Chris, who established himself as one of the greatest rock vocalists of all time during his tenure with the Crowes. But, he’s a competent singer-songwriter whose instrumental prowess more than makes up for his workmanlike singing. With Bonnie Bishop. 8 p.m. show. $18-$28. The Hamilton: 600 14th St. NW, DC;