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WHO: Eric Johnson and Alien Love Child, along with the Derek Trucks Band

WHEN: 8 p.m. Monday

WHERE: University at Buffalo Center for the Arts, North Campus



Talk about two for the road! Monday, the grinding groove of itinerant Southern blues rock will fill UB's Center for the Arts.

Good things come out of Austin, Texas. That's where Eric Johnson was born, and his ascent was meteoric. Johnson was still in his teens when he was doing session work for Cat Stevens, Carole King and Christopher Cross. In 1984, he appeared on Austin City Limits. Prince saw him, was impressed, and got Warner Bros. to give Johnson a recording contract.

Thanks in part to the eccentric rocker's encouragement, Johnson went on to collaborate with such disparate musicians as B.B. King, Chet Atkins and Dweezil Zappa. Last year, with his side project, "Alien Love Child," he released the recording "Live and Beyond."

A guitar master praised by Musician magazine, Johnson is a good match for Derek Trucks, who joins him on his Monday date.

The nephew of Allman Brothers drummer Butch Trucks, and now a member of the band himself, Derek Trucks has inherited the aggressive sound the Allman Brothers got from power bluesmen like Elmore James and Howlin' Wolf. The year 1997 saw the self-titled debut of the Derek Trucks Band on Landslide Records, followed by "Out of the Madness." Trucks is only 21, but recently, Rolling Stone magazine designated his group a "Hot Jam Band." Monday at UB, we'll see why.

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