Tonight in Utah:
Yonder Mountain String Band
Spotlight show • “No one gets into bluegrass to be famous,” said Ben Kaufmann, bass player for Yonder Mountain String Band, in an interview. “I think at least one jaw dropped several inches when I told my parents I wanted to be a bluegrass musician.” Kaufmann’s parents need not worry, for YMSB has grown into one of the most popular bluegrass groups in the world. The Colorado-based band keeps its material fresh and innovative by touring endlessly and constantly creating new songs. “We’re always writing,” Kaufmann said. “There’s always someone with something new. We’re not good at sitting on things. We have short attention spans.” That’s why when we hear YMSB on Wednesday, we will hear plenty of new stuff that won’t be recorded until well in 2013 — if at all. “We’re a live band,” he said. “That’s where we shine.” Kaufmann has a young son at home, and he is playing piano and singing Frank Sinatra tunes to the boy to jump-start his musical aspirations. “I’m going to tell him not to be a doctor or a lawyer,” he said. Brown Bird guests.
When • Wednesday, April 11, at 8 p.m.
Where • The Depot, 400 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City
Tickets • $20 in advance, $25 day of, at SmithsTix show
Spotlight show •Singer Madeline Follin said there are three states the New York City-based indie-pop duo hasn’t visited in two years of nonstop touring: Alaska, Hawaii and Utah. That helps explain the rapid Utah ticket sales for Follin and guitarist Brian Oblivion, backed by three members of a touring band. The group’s self-titled debut album was released last June, with many flocking to the music of the dynamic pair that blends influences from girl groups of the 1960s with a modern sensibility and unusual references. Those references include a quote from cult leader Jim Jones serving as the introduction to the duo’s biggest hit, the sunny “Go Outside.” The song, written first as an instrumental, was the first time Follin heard Oblivion craft a song, and like the rest of us, she was hooked. The pair began writing together, with Oblivion generally writing the music and Follin the lyrics. They initially believed no one would ever hear the music, she said. “It was definitely not calculated,” she said. But three songs posted on a blog — including “Go Outside” — were picked up by several influential blogs in New York City, and within a year, Columbia Records came calling. “We’ve had an amazing time,” Follin said. Spectrals and Mrs Magician are also on the bill.
When • Wednesday, April 11, at 9 p.m.
Where • Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, Salt Lake City
Tickets • $12 at 24Tix
Jazz at the Station with WSU Jazz Ensemble
The Union Station Foundation presents the Weber State University Jazz Ensemble in the Grand Lobby of Ogden’s Union Station. The group will be performing contemporary and Latin-beat numbers, with vocalist Casey Wood.
When • Wednesday, April 11, at 7 p.m.
Where • Union Station, 2501 Wall Ave., Ogden
Tickets • Free