Colorado is not the state where one expects to find the Next Big Thing in bluegrass music. But that is where, in a town outside Boulder called Nederland, banjoist David Johnston, bassist Ben Kaufmann and guitarist Adam Aijala formed Yonder Mountain String Band in 1998. Blending the traditional sounds of genre figureheads such as Bill Monroe with Grateful Dead-influenced backwoods boogie made the band an immediate hit with the local college crowd. Songs about the strain of dealing with modern society, varied setlists including offbeat covers of Ozzy Osbourne's "Crazy Train" and the Talking Heads' "Life During Wartime," plus relentless touring, have endeared Yonder Mountain to both jam-band and roots enthusiasts.
Yonder Mountain String Band, 8 p.m. Sat., Feb. 10, Jannus Landing, St. Petersburg. $20/$25 day of show. —Wade Tatangelo
BRACED FOR SUCCESS
St. Pete singer/songwriter Lorna Bracewell is a plucky and passionate performer going places — like back to tour Europe for a third time in May. Before Bracewell does, though, she'll debut material from her compelling fourth studio album Flowers on the Chain. Unlike other 20-something acoustic-guitar-wielding women, Bracewell isn't afraid to cut loose and let her raspy pipes ride across hard-hitting arrangements fleshed out by a full band. Take, for instance, her new record's title track, a funky groove goosed with bluesy lead guitar licks and lyrics about the shortcomings of blind love, faith and patriotism. Bracewell says she admires Ani DiFranco and The Rolling Stones. It shows.
Lorna Bracewell CD Release Party, 7 p.m. Sat., Feb. 10, Pro Star Recording Studio (3220 28th St. N., St. Petersburg), $15/$25 for ticket and CD. —WT
BAD TO THE BONE
Don't let the silly sexual innuendo of the band's name mislead you — Bonerama is a New Orleans brass/funk-rock ensemble (with a drummer and guitarist) that has chops to spare and the Crescent City soul to turn any venue into a French Quarter-style block party. Blending second-line stomps with outrageous renditions of hard-rock classics like Black Sabbath's "War Pigs," this band should have no problem raising the proverbial roof at the Skipperdome.
Bonerama w/Unknown Hinson, 5 p.m. Sun., Feb. 11, Skipper's Smokehouse,Tampa. $10/$13 day of show. —WT