Music » Critics' Picks

Jimbo Mathus

9 p.m. Friday, January 14. The Old Rock House, 1200 South Seventh Street.

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At this point in history, it should be unnecessary to reference the Squirrel Nut Zippers in contextualizing Jimbo Mathus' music. Yes, he founded that band, and he's never tasted commercial success on the order of the 1996 crossover hit "Hell." But his post-Zippers career has been prolific and potent, more blues sting than ersatz swing. As a producer and guitarist he's worked with Andrew Bird, Buddy Guy and the daughter of Charley Patton. Last year he jammed with fellow Mississippi hellhounds Luther Dickinson and Alvin Youngblood Hart in the South Memphis String Band and then wrote and directed a musical called Mosquitoville: Mississippi Songs and Stories. Along with Jack White and Tom Waits, Mathus is simply one of the blues' greatest living evangelists and innovators.

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