Live music picks: Tracy Lawrence in Cedar Park, Kool Keith at Antone's and more
Here are our top picks among live music options in the Austin area for Oct. 28-Nov. 3.
Jane Leo, Swimming With Bears, Saint Loretto at Haute Spot. Singer-songwriter Jane Ellen Bryant and Leopold & His Fiction frontman Daniel James both had good things going on the indie scene separately pre-pandemic. Now they’ve teamed up in one of Austin’s most intriguing new acts, introducing themselves with two videos over the summer. Also on the bill is pop band Swimming With Bears, a 2016 Black Fret grant recipient, and Saint Loretto. Located in Cedar Park, the Haute Spot has become one of the Austin area’s best outdoor venues over the past couple of years. $5-$15. 7 p.m. hautespotvenue.com. — P.B.
Tracy Lawrence, Bellamy Brothers, Gene Watson, Kyle Park at H-E-B Center. With 20 top-10 country singles (including eight that reached No. 1) in the 1990s, Lawrence was among country most prolific hitmakers during a decade in which the genre reached new levels of mass-audience pop appeal. Still, it’s the other acts on this bill that intrigue us most. The Bellamy Brothers’ glory years were the 1970s and '80s; they had a lot of hits, but none was bigger than their first, the 1976 crossover pop-chart-topper “Let Your Love Flow.” Native Texan Watson, meanwhile, was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry last year; his style is the most traditional of these three, with gospel songs also a part of his repertoire. And Leander’s Kyle Park has been one of the Austin area’s brightest country talents of the past decade, releasing a half-dozen albums and touring relentlessly. $34.75-$74.75. 7:30 p.m. hebcenter.com. — P.B.
Serpentwithfeet, Madison McFerrin, Christelle Bofale at Long Center. The vaunted concert hall kicks off a new outdoor music series on its skyline terrace with a celebration of expressive songwriting and soulful sounds. The LookOUT invites you to “explore new intersections of music, diversity, and creativity.” The first event is headlined by experimental singer-songwriter serpentwithfeet, whose gospel-laced 2021 album “Deacon” is a gorgeous collection highlighting the beauty of Black queer love. Soul artist Madison McFerrin and Austin’s own standout singer-songwriter Christelle Bofale open. $45-$50. 6:30 p.m. thelongcenter.org. — D.S.S.
JJ Grey & Mofro, Black Joe Lewis at ACL Live. Soulful Florida rocker Grey carved out a solid niche with his swampy Southern sound over the past two decades, backed by a revolving cast of musicians that at one time included Austinites Anthony Ferrell and Andrew Trube of the Greyhounds. A good match on the bill is local band Black Joe Lewis, whose mix of blues, funk, soul and rock has made him (and his previous band the Honeybears) a top club draw for more than a decade. $34-$45. 8 p.m. acl-live.com. — P.B.
Outside the City Limits Music Festival at Vista Brewing. Tucked away in Driftwood about 45 minutes south of downtown, Vista is a charmingly bucolic brewery with both outdoor and indoor spaces that occasionally features live music. This third annual event will feature sets by the Deer (6:30 p.m.), Sour Bridges (5 p.m.), Buffalo Hunt (4 p.m.), Jomo & the Possum Posse (3 p.m.), Motenko (2 pm.) and Stone Wheels (1 p.m.). Farm-fresh food items will be sold on-site. Gates open at noon and close at 9 p.m. $20-$25 ($85 VIP). vistabrewingtx.com. — P.B.
Kool Keith Halloween at Antone’s. Who better to spend your hip-hop Halloween with than the oddball kingpin of the Ultramagnetic MCs? Through his long and storied career, Keith has inhabited many eclectic characters. Who will show up on Halloween? Will it be Black Elvis? Dr. Octagon? Crazy Lou? No matter; it will be a strange and potentially hilarious way to celebrate All Hallow’s Eve. Chucky Blk, The Point and DJ ConSafos and DJ Raquiqui open. $15-$20. 8 p.m. antonesnightclub.com. — D.S.S.
Jon Blondell Quintet, Sarah Sharp Quartet at Elephant Room. Austin’s premier jazz venue for more than three decades, this basement club in the heart of downtown opened again briefly this summer before closing down once more when COVID-19 stats spiked. It recently reopened and is back to presenting top local jazz talent seven nights a week, including these two veterans of the scene: trombonist Blondell in the 9 p.m. slot and singer Sharp playing a 6 p.m. happy-hour show. Free. elephantroom.com. — P.B.