Band Listings Sunday, May 3
Cellular South Stage • 2:15 p.m.
Georgia rockers Dead Confederate debuted last year with their album Wrecking Ball, a mix of alt-country, grunge, and art-rock reminiscent of other Southern indie heroes My Morning Jacket. The band recently played Memphis as an opener for alt-rock gods Dinosaur Jr. and returns to the big stage at the Beale Street Music Fest.
Chancho En Piedra
Cellular South Stage • 3:50 p.m.
Representing this year's Memphis in May honored country, Chile, Chancho En Piedra is a Latin rock band that first formed in the early '90s and has become one of Chile's most popular bands.
Theory of a Deadman
Cellular South Stage • 5:25 p.m.
Canadian rockers Theory of a Deadman were the first band signed to Nickelback singer Chad Kroeger's personal label, 604 Records, and the band's strong post-grunge rock is similar to that of Kroeger's platinum-selling band. Three albums into their career — most recently 2008's Scars and Souvenirs — the band has scored five Top 10 "Mainstream Rock" hits on Billboard's charts.
Cellular South Stage • 7:05 p.m.
Oklahoma City's Hinder are one of the most successful new hard-rock bands to emerge over the past few years, their 2005 debut Extreme Behavior selling triple-platinum and launching the Top Five single "Lips of an Angel." The band returned last year with the follow-up Take It to the Limit, which saw the band moving in a more flamboyant direction typified by their cover of the proto-metal classic "Born To Be Wild" as a NASCAR theme song.
Fall Out Boy
Cellular South Stage • 8:45 p.m.
Led by singer/guitarist Patrick Stump and lyricist/bassist/celebrity-tabloid star Pete Wentz, Chicago pop-punk band Fall Out Boy rose to the top of their genre with their double-platinum 2005 major-label debut, Under the Cork Tree. Dynamic hits such as "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race" and "Sugar We're Going Down" have kept them going strong as one of modern rock's most popular bands.
Sam's Town Stage • 2 p.m.
With his uniquely soulful singer-songwriter sound (sort of James Taylor meets Bill Withers), Philly native Amos Lee followed the Norah Jones path to crossover success — first opening for the jazz-pop sensation and then following her to jazz label Blue Note.
Jerry Lee Lewis
Sam's Town Stage • 3:40 p.m.
Way back in 1957, this Bible college dropout from Ferriday, Louisiana, was determined to become Sam Phillips' next discovery. His first single, the pumping piano tune "Crazy Arms," did moderately well. Then all hell broke loose when Lewis cut "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" at Memphis' Sun Studio. Onstage, the Killer fulfilled every parent's worst nightmare, delivering a solid mule kick to his piano bench and shaking his hips in a frenzy. Lewis reinvented himself as a straight country star in later decades, but a slow-building rock-and-roll comeback (which began with the late-'80s big-screen biopic Great Balls of Fire and includes his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame) has rightfully restored Lewis to his position at the forefront of rock royalty.
Sam's Town Stage • 5:10 p.m.
A nine-time Grammy winner, Bonnie Raitt has released highly regarded folk-rock albums in each of the past four decades. The highlights of one of contemporary pop's most prolific and durable careers: 1972's charmingly girlish blues-mama breakthrough Give It Up, the turn-of-the-decade 1989/1991 commercial juggernauts Nick of Time and Luck of the Draw, and underrated, adventurous 1998 album Fundamental. Expect to hear feisty, lusty classics like "Something To Talk About" and "Love Me Like a Man."
Sam's Town Stage • 7 p.m.
The signature star of the '70s singer-songwriter boom, James Taylor in many ways defines the genre — his acoustic ease, his gentle voice, his sensitive songcraft. Known for hits like "Fire and Rain" and "You've Got a Friend" and albums like Sweet Baby James, Taylor is as known a quantity as you'll find at the festival. His fans are legion, and they will not be disappointed.
Budweiser Stage • 2:15 p.m.
This young Memphis metal band has risen over the past couple of years to the top of their scene, led by the soaring vocals of wild-man frontman Gary Segars.
Three 6 Mafia
Budweiser Stage • 3:45 p.m.
The longtime standard-bearers of Memphis rap, Three 6 Mafia have reached a new level over the past few years: They won an Oscar for their song "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp," a contribution to the made-in-Memphis film Hustle & Flow. They dominated hip-hop with the epic, classic single "Stay Fly." And they conquered reality TV with their MTV series Adventures in Hollyhood. Led by the colorful founding duo of Juicy "J" and DJ Paul, Three 6 Mafia are always a big hit at the Beale Street Music Festival.
Budweiser Stage • 5:15 p.m.
Once the crown prince of gangsta rap after being introduced on Dr. Dre's landmark 1993 album The Chronic, Snoop Dogg is now a hip-hop elder statesman boasting decade-spanning hits such as "Gin and Juice" and "Drop It Like It's Hot." With his imposing stature, laconic drawl, and quick wit, Snoop Dogg also has become a celebrity who transcends hip-hop. He's a household name, even among people who aren't rap fans.
Budweiser Stage • 7 p.m.
A funk/rap/metal band from, of all places, Nebraska, 311 moved to Los Angeles soon after conquering their hometown Omaha music scene at the dawn of the '90s and then went national, never looking back. The hard-touring band has been a consistent hit-maker ever since. Long popular in Memphis, 311 held its annual March 11th "311 Day" concert in town in 2006, plowing through a 65-song set list.
Reba Russell Band
Blues Tent • 2:05 p.m.
Longtime stalwarts of Memphis' Beale Street-based blues scene, blue-eyed belter Reba Russell and her band remain one of the most reliable purveyors of Memphis-style blues and R&B and steady favorites on the blues-festival circuit.
Blues Tent • 3:30 p.m.
An up-and-coming blues and roots-rock artist from Florida, Damon Fowler is an emerging hit on the blues-festival circuit and recently released Sugar Shack, his debut for the venerable Blind Pig label, which features bluesy covers of classic country songs from the likes of Merle Haggard and Billy Joe Shaver.
Blues Tent • 5:05 p.m.
Louisiana blues singer/songwriter/guitarist Sherman Robertson mixes zydeco and swamp blues with more traditional R&B and electric blues. A onetime sideman for zydeco legend Clifton Chenier, Robertson struck out on his own in the '90s with the celebrated debut I'm the Man for Atlantic Records and has been a fixture on the blues scene ever since.
Blues Tent • 6:40 p.m.
Veteran Texas blues singer and guitarist Guitar Shorty learned from masters like B.B. King, T-Bone Walker, and Guitar Slim. Still a flamboyant performer as he approaches age 70, Shorty first started recording in the late '50s and has had a long, varied career since, including a winning appearance on The Gong Show. Today, he records for the venerable blues label Alligator.
Blues Tent • 8:25 p.m.
The godfather of British blues-rock, Mayall's '60s band, the Bluesbreakers, served as a finishing school of sorts for a series of classic guitarists who would go on to greater fame in other bands — Eric Clapton (Cream), Peter Green (Fleetwood Mac), Mick Taylor (Rolling Stones). A legend of the genre, Mayall continues to present his personal spin on the electric-style Chicago blues.
Blind Mississippi Morris and Richard Johnston
SoCo Blues Shack • 2:15-7:10 p.m.
Two of the Mid-South's most authentic blues musicians — Memphis veteran Blind Mississippi Morris and younger hill-country iconoclast Richard Johnston — will alternate sets at the Blues Shack all day Sunday.