Music » Critics' Picks

Luther Dickinson & the Wandering

9 p.m. Friday, May 18. The Duck Room at Blueberry Hill, 6504 Delmar Boulevard, University City.

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For Luther Dickinson, leader of the North Mississippi Allstars, the Wandering was a simple matter of free association: banjo and guitar led to fife and drum, roots musicians Amy LaVere and Valerie June led to Shannon McNally and Sharde Thomas, and it all came together in a surprisingly cohesive old-time ensemble of talented women taking the lead on spirituals like "Glory, Glory," archetypes like "Old Joe Clark" and why-the-hell-not larks like the Byrds' "Mr. Spaceman." Dickinson stays out of the gals' way, focusing instead on his prickly slide guitar and scrappy banjo playing.

Who Should Go: Fans of the Carolina Chocolate Drops, Old Crow Medicine Show and even the Mississippi Allstars will find more than enough deep, danceable blues in the Wandering's loose, old-time folk.

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