1. The Willow Tree Coffeehouse and Music Room is very proud and grateful to be able to celebrate its two year anniversary this month. And as with its first year anniversary celebration, they are bringing in some of the best of the best to help them celebrate. At 8 p.m. Jan. 16 both Big Daddy Love and Dangermuffin will take the stage. Big Daddy Love is a five-piece band with a unique and natural blend of rock, roots and grass that they call ‘Appalachian Rock’. No longer easily dubbed an Americana or roots-rock band, Dangermuffin’s sound encompasses ska, calypso and even Southern rock, often within the same song.
2. Jon Stickley — from the Jon Stickley Trio — and Travis Book — of the Infamous Stringdusters — will host an intimate evening of brother-style guitar and vocals at The Down Home on Jan. 21. The duo revisits material from past collaborations — including Broke Mountain and Colorado Playboys — as well as original material and songs from their respective bands. Stickley & Book's performances capture the spirit of two old friends reuniting to have fun and provide an energetic, highly entertaining night of music, showcasing Book's powerful vocals along with Stickley's innovative flatpicking. John Stickley and Travis Book will play at The Down Home from 8-10:30 p.m. Jan. 21. Admission is $14 at the door.
3. Most bands don't take it far enough. Rock isn't dead. Blues isn't dead. And there will always be a sweet spot for music where blues and punk hit — a legitimate idea of what happens when hard mountain blues meets old school punk. The Dirty Badgers typify this dynamic combination of genres, drawing comparisons between themselves, New York Dolls and The White Stripes. Hailing from Asheville, North Carolina, The Dirty Badgers will perform at 10 p.m. Saturday at The Acoustic Coffeehouse.
4. Torche, a hard rock band whose members come from Florida and Georgia, will perform at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Hideaway. Doom-pop heavyweights, Torche, create skull-crushing riffs with uplifting melodies, offering a soaringly anthemic twist on a genre that is otherwise full of darkness and sludge. Jeff Carey — an electronic artist who performs music using a a joystick and keypad — and Day Old Man — a sludge metal band from Atlanta, Georgia — will also perform. Tickets are $13.
5. Directed by Michael Bay — the filmmaker behind “Transformers” and “Armageddon” — “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is the true story of six elite ex-military operators who fought back against overwhelming odds when terrorists attacked a U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya on Sept. 11, 2012. The movie is based on the book “13 Hours,” written by Mitchell Zuckoff and will begin appearing in local theaters starting Thursday.