Alas, the sweet sound of Appalachia — with its whipfast fiddling and God-fearing sister acts that go tell it on any number of mountains, championing Ralph Stanley and Charlie Daniels to defend its sacred roots — has no place at Music on the Mountain, the resurgent, Americana-celebrating concert series once popular in ‘90s Vegas.
Instead of the overalls-and-moonshine vibe the name implies (to us, at least), this first concert of four is the combination of southern rock, swing and straight blues, greasier than the pompadour of the decidedly hepcat veteran Rick Estrin, backed by his Nightcats. The whole lineup (Estrin, John Earl’s Boogieman Band, Tommy Rocker’s Band, Scott Rhiner’s Moaning Blacksnakes, et al) reminds us of a Louisiana barbecue soundtrack, minus Creole folk and plus a mountain.
That’s right: The whole thing’s going down at the Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort in Lee Canyon, roughly an hour east of the Boulevard. Make sure you bring your own blankets and chairs, since it’s “festival seating” — meaning there are no actual seats.
As an additional treat on top of getting out to the non-sticky-hot part of the state for an afternoon, Rick Estrin and The Nightcats release their new album,<em> One Wrong Turn</em>, a couple days later, meaning we’ll get a bunch of new tracks on top of the already pretty solid tunes from their debut, <em>Twisted</em>. Whether you know what we’re talking about or not, get ready for some gritty lounge swing the Appalachian hill people would proclaim as hedonism.
10 a.m.; Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort, 725 Lee Canyon Road, Mount Charleston, 385-2754, $15.