After all the merrymaking over the holidays, 2019 starts a bit slow in the arena concert scene. This might be a good time to bundle up and check out smaller bar music venues. Local acoustic blues guitarist Matt Woods released his third album, “Tired and Dirty,” in December. He’s a threetime winner of the Iowa Blues Challenge and semi-finalist at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis. Catch his act on Jan. 20 at Vinyl Cup Records in Des Moines or Feb. 8 at Brightside Ale Works in Altoona.
For the 10th year, Hairball returns to the Iowa State Fairgrounds Jacobson Center on Feb. 2. Special guest Kat Perkins from Scarlet Haze and a 2014 “The Voice” contestant, joins the 1980s band. Tickets are $23 in advance, $30 day of show, available at the box office or www.etix.com. Grand Ole’ Opry, Country Music Hall of Fame and Grammy Award-winning Charlie Daniels Band brings the devil from Georgia at Hoyt Sherman on March 29. Tickets start at $50. On April 4, Randy Rainbow Live performs at Hoyt Sherman. With millions of Facebook and You Tube views of his song parodies and political spoofs, the singer delights his audience with songs and laughter. Tickets cost $37.50 to $49.50, www.hoytsherman.org.
Hit up Noce late night on Fridays in January, where vocalist/pianist Max Wellman and bassist Steve Charlson, with special guests, perform. The show begins at 10:30 p.m., and there’s no cover. ♦