But as some wise old soul said to me as I rode the train to the end of the station, it doesn't matter where you end up as long as you end up somewhere. Here are plenty of fine candidates for your weekend's entertainment. Choose wisely — but choose.
Bobby Long, Steven Cooley at Radio Radio
Long, a British singer-songwriter born near Manchester, wrote a senior thesis on the social impact of American folk music, and shortly after flew across the pond to present his own stuff before U.S. fans. Learning is all about doing. His debut album on ATO Records (Dave Matthews' label, to which he signed in early 2010) was released February 1. 8 p.m., $12 advance, 21+.
Marc Broussard, Drew Holcomb & the Neighbors at The Vogue
A Lafayette, La. native born to an R&B guitarist, Broussard has made his name mixing blue-eyed soul with zydeco and rock. 8 p.m., $18 advance (plus applicable fees), $20 door, 21+.
Clutch, Valient Thorr, Phoenix on the Faultline at The Vogue
The blues, funk and metal inform Clutch's syncretic stoner rock, which the band has been touring behind since the early '90s. 8 p.m., $17 (plus applicable fees), 21+.
A-1 Apache Dropout Audio-Visual Blowout at the Earth House
Bloomington-based primitive psych-rock band Apache Dropout, whose debut full-length is due on Lafayette’s Family Vineyard label in late March, headlines a night of visual and sound art at the Earth House. With visual art by Austin Dickson, Greg Ajamie and Austin Reavis, and music by Golden Moses and Moemoemoe (Adam Gross, Melanie Rau). 8 p.m., $5, all-ages.
Lift Off at Locals Only
Four See Entertainment presents a night of live music and CD releases from some of Indy's discovered and undiscovered talents, including Green Hornet (Eratic & Mr. Kinetik, with a new EP on Audio Recon), Mo.Jey, Sleeper Cell, Brad Real, El Carnicero & Verse, Ms. Talented and DJ Deadrisk. 8 p.m., $5, 21+.
Dominique Young Unique, DJ Gabby Love at Room 929 at the Ripple Inn
For all those Indianapolis hip-hop fans who complain about not getting the good stuff until it's too late, Dominique Young Unique is the real thing, a 19-year-old, Tampa Bay-based rapper with a thick Southern drawl and a high-energy, sultry approach. NUVO's Danielle Look recently spoke with Dominique about her hometown (supportive, but not really), her opening spot for the Dirty Projectors (wonderful!) and making it as a young emcee (too many dudes trying to get in her pants). 9 p.m., $7 advance (eventbrite.com), $10 door, 21+.
Jazz meets gospel: Yolanda Adams and Take 6 at the Palladium at the Center for the Performing Arts
The Grammy-winning a cappella jazz group Take 6 is joined by gospel singer Yolanda Adams, called the number one gospel artist of the past decade by Billboard Magazine and one of the featured vocalists in a tribute to Aretha Franklin during this year’s Grammy broadcast. 8 p.m., sold out, all-ages.
The Manhattan Transfer and John Pizzarelli at Clowes Memorial Hall
John Pizzarelli has always been of the old school — his recording debut, I’m Hip — Please Don’t Tell My Father, drew on jazz classics and the American Popular Songbook, and his trio has backed jazz and pop purists throughout the past three decades, including high-profile dates behind Frank Sinatra in the early ‘90s. The four members of the restless and innovative jazz vocal group The Manhattan Transfer draw upon the whole range of vocal techniques, including their own vocalese arrangements, while also going further afield into the worlds of pop and world music. 8 p.m., $30-40 adults, $25-35 students and seniors, all-ages.
Punk Rock Night with The Toasters, Lockstep, Bleach Battalion at the Melody Inn
Right around 30 years ago, The Toasters helped bring ska to these shores, playing it around New York City clubs before taking it to the rest of the country. After living through the ‘90s ska boom, they’re still on road, and will play a very special Punk Rock Night at the Melody Inn this Saturday. Wade Coggeshall lays out a brief history of The Toasters this week, talking to founding member Robert Hingley about his umpteen years on the road. 10 p.m., $10, 21+.
Truth & Salvage Co. at Radio Radio
Roots-rock band Truth & Salvage Co. got a career-launching boost from their association with The Black Crowes — they opened for the band during much of 2009, and Crowes lead singer Chris Robinson produced their 2010 debut record. Earlier this week, NUVO's Rob Nichols checked in with Truth & Salvage Co.'s Tim Jones, who said he was eager to return to his old stomping grounds (he once led the Bloomington roots-rock band Old Pike). 9 p.m., $8 advance, $10 door, 21+.
An evening with Kristopher Roe at Radio Radio
Roe, the lead singer and sole surviving band member of The Ataris, a pop-punk band from Anderson that once enjoyed major-label status, presents his songs in stripped-down, acoustic form. 9 p.m., $6 advance, $8 door, 21+.