Like a homegrown hybrid of influences including Yonder Mountain String Band, the Decemberists, acoustic Jethro Tull and Bon Iver, the Observers grew out of a musical meeting of the minds between Allentown-based musicians Josh Gage, Allen Greystone and Ben Perrello. All three are songwriters, singers and multi-instrumentalists, with a common core formed from a shared love of indie folk and Americana.
The group has expanded to include the talents of fiddle player Jonas Gage, flute player Jeannine Giffear, banjo player Tyler Wetcot and bassist Matt Eppolito. In the process, it has emerged as a harmony-heavy acoustic-based ensemble boasting both instrumental chops and songwriting smarts.
The band has labored to capture the rootsy and rustic nature of its ensemble interplay in the recording studio, and the result is a self-titled debut disc. The Observers, along with friends Savannah King – another bright, young hopeful on the Buffalo singer/songwriter scene – and Fredonia-born roots-soul outfit Lady Lush & the Vinyls, will take over the Ninth Ward at Babeville (341 Delaware Ave.) at 8 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $8 advance, $10 at the door (box office, Ticketmaster).
Duke’s 4/20 party
A showcase in honor of 4/20 – a date widely observed as a counterculture holiday – takes place at 4 p.m. Sunday in Duke’s Bohemian Grove Bar (253 Allen St.). A strong lineup of regional roots and jam bands will convene, with sets from renowned local turntablist DJ Whorehey filling the downtime between full band sets.
Scheduled to perform are the much buzzed-about funk/psychedelic/jam conglomerate Groove Force, prog/jam outfit Ajamja, progressive roots mavens Little Mountain Band, trance-electro quartet Space Junk, and a one-time-only set from regional jam band supergroup Sonic Force.
Additional information is available through www.dukesbohemiangrovebar.com.
Tonight, psychedelic roots/reggae outfit and Buffalo fan favorite Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad makes its way back here to a stage the Rochester band has made into its favorite over the past 10 years, the Tralf Music Hall (622 Main St). GPGDS will be joined by the Heavy Pets, a Florida trio specializing in a jazz-funk-jam hybrid. Doors open at 8 p.m.; music starts at 9 tonight. Tickets are $15 (box office, Ticketmaster).
Canadian indie-rock quartet Hollerado arrives for a show at 9 p.m. Friday in the Town Ballroom (681 Main St.). Tickets are $15 advance, $17 at the door (box office, www.ticketfly.com).
At 9 p.m. Wednesday, Nietzsche’s (248 Allen St.) hosts the return of Israeli-American jazz fusion/progressive music ensemble Marbin, who were last in town for a scorching show at the Tralf Music Hall in 2013. The band will be joined by Imperial Brown and Infinity Machine. Admission at the door will be $5. Fans of serious musicianship that treads the line between electric jazz, rock, and progressive rock, take note.