Ed. note: The nice thing about living in a music city is that we get a ton of great live shows every single month. The tough thing, however, is deciding which bands to see. With that in mind, here are 10 recommendations for shows you won't want to miss this month:
One man bands are pretty fun to watch, especially when they're as gritty and garagey as Bloodshott Bill. I don't know much about the Paint Fumes, but James and the Ultrasounds is a new Memphis supergroup made up of members of Tennessee Tearjerkers, the Grifters and more. Memphis Vic will DJ.
Minneapolis rappers Atmosphere are coming to the New Daisy on July 11th for an all-ages show. They're not quite like regular club banger kind of rappers, though – their lyrics are smart and funny and a little bit heartbreaking (and often about girls). If you need an example, check out their ode to Minneapolis (which could just as well be about Memphis).
If you love dreamy, sun-soaked indie pop, then you'll want to be at Minglewood on July 12 for Beach House. Everyone else you know will probably be there. Wild Nothing will open, and the show is in Minglewood's big room, so there will be plenty of space.
For those of you into things that are a little more mellow, folk singer James Taylor is playing an outdoor show at the Mud Island Amphitheatre on July 15.
Southhaven-born, Nashville-based songwriter Cory Branan is coming home during his tour for Mutt, his first album in about 7 years. His lyrics are smartly written and he tells a great story. As a bonus, there are usually some songs he performs live that probably won't ever make it onto a record. Audra Mae and Adam Faucett will open.
Bring a chair and some friends to WEVL's 24th annual Blues on the Bluff concert at the Metal Museum. Elmo and the Shades, Jimbo Mathus and the Tri-State Coalition and Lightning Malcom will play, and there will be a silent auction and plenty of food and drink. Proceeds benefit Memphis' only volunteer radio station.
Before he sets off on his 33-city Road to Riches Tour, Memphis rapper Yo Gotti is playing at Minglewood with a large handful of local rap talent: Zed Zilla, Young Dolph, Don Trip and 8 Ball.
Mynabirds' (aka Laura Burhenn) first record sounded like very updated 60s pop. The second record, Generals, is loaded with loud, stomping protest songs. Either way, you'll want to pack your dancing shoes. Deep Time and Toxie will open.
Soul singer (I think he's a soul singer) Seal is playing an outdoor show at the Memphis Botanic Garden as part of their Live at the Garden Concert Series. Picnics and blankets are allowed, Macy Gray will open and yes, he'll probably play "Kiss from a Rose."
The River City Tanlines are releasing a brand new record, "Coast to Coast" at the Hi-Tone on July 28. The venerable local garage rock band features one of my favorite frontwomen of all time, Alicja Trout. The album release show is free, so you have no excuse.
What bands are you looking forward to seeing in July?