Weekend music picks: Homegrown blues and helping hands

OUR TOP PICKS

Jackie Venson. Photo by Gene Chavez.

Jackie Venson. Contributed by Gene Chavez.

Friday: Jackie Venson at Waterloo Records. The rapidly rising blues artist’s decision to release a live album was a wise move. Watching Venson perform live is riveting. She’s a musician’s musician who channels spirits to coax soaring melodies out of her electric guitar. The magic she spins is evident in her 2016 release, “Live at Strange Brew,” but why not experience it firsthand? Free. 5 p.m. 600 N. Lamar Blvd. waterloorecords.com. — D.S.S.

WATCH: Jackie Venson backs Anderson Paak, Mac Miller on Stephen Colbert

Friday: Atmosphere at Emo’s. Twenty years ago, as the mainstream music industry spiraled into chaos, a scrappy group of artists and entrepreneurs in the unlikely hip-hop hotbed of Minneapolis came together to form Rhymesayers Entertainment. These days they run one of the most successful indie hip-hop labels in the world, representing over three dozen artists and producing the annual Soundset festival in their hometown. This show presents the label’s flagship act, Atmosphere, who’s been the guiding voice for a generation of backpack-toting, indie hip-hop oddballs, alongside Brother Ali, Dem Atlas and more. $28 advance/$30 day of show. 8 p.m. doors. 2015 E. Riverside Drive. emosaustin.com. — D.S.S.

» RELATED: Rhymesayers Entertainment celebrates 20 years of indie hip-hop

Also playing Friday

  • Blood, Sweat & Tears at One World Theatre
  • Midge Ure Band, Nite at 3Ten
  • Wayne Hancock, Danny B. Harvey at White Horse
  • No Comply Skate Shop 10-year anniversary, Peligrosa at Empire
  • Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash at Broken Spoke
  • Monte Montgomery at Antone’s
  • Tameca Jones at Stubb’s indoor
  • Blue Water Highway, Denny Freeman at Saxon Pub
  • James Stevens, Will Courtney at Cactus Cafe
  • Silas Lowe & the Liabilities, Graham Weber at Driskill Bar
  • Howlin’ Brothers, Christy Hays at ABGB
  • Teddy & the Talltops at Evangeline Cafe
  • Albert & Gage Band at Donn’s Depot
  • Harvest Thieves, We Are Blood Bays album release at Spider House Ballroom

Friday-Saturday

  • Mike Flanigin Trio with Jimmie Vaughan at C-Boy’s

Saturday: KUTX Winter Jam at ABGB. Public radio station KUTX 98.9 FM showcases a diverse cross-section of top-notch Austin sounds at this free, family-friendly event. Politically charged Austin/San Antonio hip-hop act Third Root takes the 5 p.m. headline spot, performing songs from their 2016 work of crucial rap scholarship, “Libertad.” Tele Novella plays tracks from their beautifully crafted psych pop platter “House of Souls” at 4, and country artist James Hand kicks things off at 3. 1305 W. Oltorf St. theabgb.com. — D.S.S.

RELATED: Stop everything and revel in the ‘Soul Power’ of Third Root

Also playing Saturday

  • Dylan LeBlanc, Motel Radio at 3Ten
  • Steve Tyrell at One World Theatre
  • Purity Ring DJ set at Empire
  • Matthew Logan Vasquez, Mean Jolene at Continental Club
  • Dark Blue, LACE, Xetas, Krista Van Liew, Quin Galavis, The Gospel Truth at Barracuda
  • W.C. Clark Blues Revue, Matthew Robinson & the Jelly Kings, Conjunto Los Pinkys at Antone’s
  • Rosie Flores, Jai Malano, Dave Insley at White Horse
  • Tweedy’s birthday with Roky Moon & Holt, ABBA tribute and more at Hotel Vegas
  • Beto & the Fairlanes at Elephant Room
  • Extreme Heat, James Hand at Saxon Pub
  • Robert LaRoche at Townsend
  • Graham Wilkinson at Geraldine’s

Sunday: Leonard Cohen Tribute at Cheer Up Charlie’s. Moving Panoramas, Grace Park, Star Parks and many more pay homage to the godfather of noir folk rock who died in November. All proceeds from the door will benefit the Austin branch of Refugee Services of Texas, a nonprofit organization that works with refugees and survivors of human trafficking. $5 suggested donation. 7 p.m. doors. 900 Red River St. cheerupcharlies.com. — D.S.S.

Sunday: “Strange Crew Brewhaha Love Fest” at Donn’s Depot. Last week’s temporary, and perhaps permanent, closure of South Austin music venue and coffee house Strange Brew hit employees especially hard, as they had no notice they’d be out of work. In solidarity, a handful of musicians, many of whom played the venue regularly, quickly put together this daytime event, with all proceeds going to Strange Brew employees who were laid off. Shinyribs, Jeff Plankenhorn, Sam Baker, Guy Forsyth & Friends, Barbara Nesbitt, Jaimee Harris, the Flyin’ A’s and Danny Britt will perform. $10-$20 suggested donation. Noon to 7 p.m. 1600 W. Fifth St. Details are on the show’s Facebook event page. — P.B.

Also playing Sunday


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