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Music Box: Miss Eagles' tour? Hotel California at Rams Head On Stage is next best thing

If you missed the most recent Eagles world tour, it's still not too late to imbibe in an evening of music by the baby-boomer generation's favorite sing-along band.

Hotel California is a tribute show that salutes the music of the 70s Southern California folk rock phenomena. And Rams Head On Stage in Annapolis allows you to get up close for the experience this Friday night (8 p.m.).

Then again, you might prefer an even smaller place for getting behind the music. Enjoy the Boston-based band Session Americana as they play the intimate Stoltz Listening Room at the historic Avalon Theatre in Easton (7 and 9:30 p.m. shows; 7 p.m. show is sold out). Seeing these guys might equate more to seeing the Eagles in their small club infancy, trading songs and licks.

Called an "eclectic, swinging tour de force" by the Boston Globe, the members of Session Americana sit in a semi-circle around a café table on stage during performances, engaging in friendly banter among themselves and with the audience when they're not performing a repertoire of country, folk, blues, rock, and pop. It's like spending a casual evening sitting around the living room with a group of friends who happen to be amazingly gifted musicians.

What a night for an Americana daydream as Lovin' Spoonful founder John Sebastian appears in a duo show with mandolin master David Grisman at The Howard Theatre in Washington, D.C. (8 p.m.). Forever associated with the hippie movement and the "Summer of Love," the chart topping Lovin' Spoonful had numerous Top 40 hits during the late 60s, including "Daydream," "Summer in the City" and "Do You Believe in Magic."

Sebastian reached No. 1 again in 1976 with "Welcome Back," the theme song for the television show "Welcome Back, Cotter." Before Woodstock changed his world, Sebastian had been accompanist to folk singers Fred Neil and Tim Hardin, and worked as a member of the Even Dozen Jug Band with Stephan Grossman, Maria Muldaur and others. In 2000, Sebastian was voted in as a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with his seminal folk rock band the Lovin' Spoonful.

Also a member of the Even Dozen Jug Band was David Grisman. "Dawg," as Jerry Garcia called him, learned mandolin as a Jersey teenager from folk musician and Folkways archivist Ralph Rinzler. He's gone on to record and perform with a who's who of American acoustic music.

Baltimore band Dru Hill released of their fourth album, "InDRUpendence Day," in 2010 after eight years away. The group, consisting of Sisqo, Nokio, Jazz and new member Tao, broke into the national spotlight in 1992 with their highly successful eponymous debut album. They've enjoyed seven Top 40 hits, including "In My Bed," "Never Make a Promise" and "How Deep Is Your Love."

Baltimore heavy rock band Black Angel Down also appears on the bill with Dru Hill Friday night at Rams Head Live! in Baltimore. The band consists of members from The Mayan Factor, Live Alien Broadcast, Imbue and Rosabella, all Baltimore bands.

Other shows in the region this Friday night include boogie-woogie pianist Daryl Davis at The Mansion at Strathmore in North Bethesda (11 a.m.), followed at the venue by Motown's "Empress of Soul" Gladys Knight in Strathmore's Music Center (8 p.m.).

Also, Death to All plays The Fillmore in Silver Spring on Friday night (8 p.m.). And if jazz vocals are what you crave this Friday night, head to Blues Alley in the Nation's Capital for an audience with Karrin Allyson (8 and 10 p.m. shows Friday and Saturday).

Saturday

The music starts early on Saturday as "git-steel" player

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Junior Brown

plucks and slides on his own musical invention. The instrument is a double-neck guitar, and Brown uses it to maximum effect on country-style standards and originals with the occasional burning Jimi Hendrix licks you won't want to miss. This is a special all-ages matinee at

Rams Head On Stage

(1 p.m.).

Later that evening,

Rams Head On Stage

welcomes 60s "bubble gum" rocker

Tommy Roe

for two shows (6:30 and 9:30 p.m., both age 21+ shows). Roe recorded six Top 10 hits between 1962 and 1969, more than any other single artist-songwriter during this period. He had 23

Billboard

Top 100 chart records, and two of them, "Sheila" and "Dizzy," topped the

Billboard

Chart at No. 1.

Over in Easton this Saturday night at the

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Stoltz Listening Room

in the

Avalon Theatre

, jazz becomes eclectic in an accessible sense when the

MARS 4-tet

re-envisions classic jazz and rock numbers from favored artists such as Herbie Hancock, Horace Silver, and also The Beatles, Peter Gabriel and Led Zeppelin (8 p.m.). This burnin' band includes some of the region's brightest jazz players, including bassist

Max Murray

, sax man

Jeff Antoniuk

, drummer

Frank Russo

, and guitarist

Donato Soveiro

.

Other celestial shows this Saturday night include a set by

The Venus 3

led by

Robyn Hitchcock

(Soft Boys, Egyptians) andREM guitarist

Peter Buck

at the

9:30 Club

(8 p.m.), alt rocker

Les Claypool

(Primus) slaps his bass around with funky aplomb as half of

Duo de Twang

western swing outfit in concert at

The Hamilton

(8:30 p.m.), and pianist

Kenny Barron

joins with jazz bassist

Dave Holland

for another tour de force duo performance at the

Family Theatre

in the

Kennedy Center

(7:30 and 9:30 p.m. shows).

Sunday

In 1971, Duke Ellington recorded an album entitled "The Afro-Eurasian Eclipse." As part of that work, Ellington proclaimed "that whole world was going [Asian]," and that no one would know "who was in the shadow of whom."

The jazz ensemble known as Hiroshima is the fulfillment of Ellington's prophecy. For more than 30 years Hiroshima has blurred the lines between jazz, pop and rock, adding traditional Japanese folk music and instruments. The resulting sound that includes

June Kuramoto's

shimmering, harp-like koto (noted by Stanley Clarke to be the world's best) creates music and sounds totally unique - with depth, heart and soul.

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Having sold close to four million records and being nominated for a Grammy Award,

Hiroshima

performs two shows at

Rams Head On Stage

in Annapolis this Sunday night (5 and 8 p.m. shows).

If you'd prefer an evening completely made up of traditional Japanese music, you might venture over the the

Clarice Smith Center

for the Performing Arts

at the University of Maryland, College Park, to see the

UMD Koto Ensemble

and the

Washington Toho Koto Society

for their annual spring concert (2 p.m.). The music expresses the quiet beauty and rustic simplicity of the 13-string, six-foot-long koto, accompanied on some occasions by the shakuhachi (end-blown bamboo flute) and shamisen (three-string, banjo-like instrument).

Monday

Guitarist

Johnny Marr

of The Smiths appears at the

9:30 Club

in D.C. on Monday (7 p.m.). Marr performed with The Smiths for five years before moving on to play with the late Kirsty MacColl, The The and the Talking Heads. He formed a band called Electronic with Pet Shop Boy Neil Tennant and New Order's Bernard Summer. Marr also had his own group, Johnny Marr & the Healers, plus he recorded and toured with Modest Mouse.

Also this Monday, don't miss the return of

Scott Kirby

and his band to

Rams Head On Stage

(8 p.m.). Kirby is best known as the guitarist for Jimmy Buffett's Coral Refer Band. He lives in Key West, Fla. and has that "Hemingway" touch when it comes to storytelling and songwriting.

Although Kirby performs in several configurations from solo to six piece band, for most live shows he is accompanied by

David Edmisten

, an extremely talented acoustic and electric guitarist and vocalist from the foothills of North Carolina. He comes from a long line of Carolina pickers and adds great texture, spectacular solos and crystal clear vocal harmonies to Kirby's compositions.

Rams Head Live!

in Baltimore welcomes three bands this Monday night, including

All That Remains

,

Sky Came Burning

and

Rome Apart

(7:30 p.m. show). All That Remains is a heavy metal band from Springfield, Mass. Formed in 1998, they have six studio albums, a live CD-DVD, and have sold nearly 800,000 records worldwide.

The big blockbuster show this Monday night finds

Rihanna

and her Diamonds World Tour making a stop at

Verizon Center

in Washington (7:30 p.m.).

Tuesday

There's a unique show at

Rams Head On Stage

this Tuesday night, a performance by

David Knopfler

, a founding member with his famous brother of the earthshaking rock band Dire Straits (8 p.m.). Knopfler is an exceptional songwriter in his own right, as revealed on his own solo albums. Knopfler is a bit reclusive, perhaps, and doesn't tour the states very often. If you love Dire Straits you will certainly enjoy this concert.

Wednesday

Rams Head On Stage

in Annapolis will present country singer

David Nail

on Wednesday night (8 p.m.). Nail debuted the single "Memphis" and in August 2009 released the album "I'm About to Come Alive." It produced three singles: the title track, "Red Light" and "Turning Home" - two reached the Top 20. His second studio album, "The Sound of a Million Dreams," was released in November 2011; the single "Let It Rain" hit No. 1 in January 2012.

Thursday, May 2

The contemporary jazz group

Fourplay

formed in 1991 and currently consists of journeymen musicians

Bob James

(keyboards),

Nathan East

(bass, vocals),

Chuck Loeb

(guitars, synths) and

Harvey Mason

(drums, percussion, vibes and synth). Their version of smooth jazz is tuneful, highly competent with a solid rhythm and groove. Fourplay appears at

Rams Head On Stage

next Thursday night (8 p.m.).

Jazz sax player

Jeff Antoniuk

performs a free show with his band

The Jazz Update

at the

Avalon Theatre

in Easton next Thursday (free 7 p.m. show).

Both a composer and a musician, Antoniuk spent a decade touring and recording with the Unified Jazz Ensemble. As a sideman, he has performed and recorded with Ray Charles, Natalie Cole, Bobby McFerrin, Freddie Hubbard, Marcus Miller and Najee.

Antoniuk also has collaborated with fellow saxophonist Jeff Coffin (Dave Matthews Band), and he is a founder and teacher at jazz workshops and classes each year in the Washington-Baltimore-Annapolis area.

For this program, Antoniuk visited and taught the Middle School Jazz Band at Easton Middle School three times throughout the year. The students will join him and his band on the stage at the Avalon for a "bus in" performance for 400 of middle school classmates, and again on this evening for a concert that will be free and open to the public.

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