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Raleigh Rhythms 

I'm Staying Out
Caitlin Cary is duly excited about the tour she launched last Saturday with the first of three consecutive dates opening for Mary Chapin Carpenter. Cary and her band have been making only brief weekend jaunts along the East Coast since the April release of her sophomore solo effort, I'm Staying Out, on Yep Roc Records. The Raleigh singer-songwriter with the utterly euphonious voice that no longer requires the dated "former Whiskeytown fiddler" epithet, is slated for no less than 16 dates in August and a dozen or more in September. A European run is also in the works.

A Rolling Stone story last month reported a pending reunion of the already-mythic alt.country cornerstone Whiskeytown.

"I always thought that this would happen, but I was thinking it would be five years from now. Ryan [Adams, former frontman] made a good point, 'Why wait until we're old and pathetic? We should have a reunion while we're all still young and vibrant,' " Cary was quoted as saying.

Since then, however, Adams posted a claim on his website that he was working on new solo material instead of the heavily rumored rebirth of Whiskeytown. Cary, though, still insists that a reunited band--in some incarnation--is still in the works. 'We're all still flirting with the idea of getting together at some point and making some more music. If there's a chance when we all have the time and all the stars are aligned, it may happen," Cary says of the band that now includes former members scattered over a few dozen projects and a few states.

Scene Snippets
Despite reports to the contrary in both this column and in a June 27 News & Observer piece, the Lincoln Theatre will not be closing its doors for the remainder of August in order to add a long-awaited upstairs balcony.

'We just had to make the call. The city hasn't given us the permits, and we didn't want to start in mid-August and end up canceling everything we've booked for September," Lincoln co-owner Mark Thompson says.

Plans now call for the Lincoln to close for a few weeks in late November or early December to complete the balcony that will increase the venue's capacity by 100. Because of the last-minute decision, the club is stuck with only a handful of shows for August. The feverish Grateful Dead cover band Cosmic Charlie rolls through Thursday night, followed by the legendary General Johnson and Chairmen of the Board on Friday. Automag, Sorrow Valley and Nephilym all rock the Lincoln on Saturday. Find last-minute dates at lincolntheatre.com.

Seattle, the Raleigh grunge tribute band named more for the Washington city's musical glory days than for its infamous rainy climate, is looking for a new guitarist with requisite back-up vocal skills. The band--formed by Jam Pain Society and Appetite for Destruction founding member Miles Partridge with bassist Jeff Maddrey--has been making weekend runs throughout the Southeast for more than a year now. Covering early-'90s anthems like 'Fell on Black Days" and 'Even Flow" while throwing a handful of originals from Partridge's project Licking Venus into each set, Seattle has earned quite a reputation for its live chops. Applicants must know their way around a Barr chord and be able to play "Smells like Teen Spirit" with one good arm, a gargantuan migraine and a bloodshot Courtney Love blow-up doll nagging along in the background. For more information, contact the band at band@seattletribute.com .

Heavy rumors are flying downtown that The Bleeding Hearts --the classic rock-bred band with only a handful of gigs but a head full of buzz--will sign to Charlotte's MoRisen Records. Disappointing move.

Local excitement coming up at Kings throughout the weekend. Friday: The Greatest Hits, Dirty Johnny and The Make Believes, and The BQ's (including The Cherry Valence's Brian Quast); Saturday: Bifocal Media show including Des Ark and Ben Davis (ex-Sleepytime Trio); Sunday: The Loners as they return from their biggest tour yet.

In one of its most generous attempts to bolster slumping ticket sales, Clear Channel Entertainment recently announced its own version of a Very Important Customer program. The getAccess membership--valid at any of the 100 Clear Channel venues throughout the land--offers participants who join through Raleigh's Alltel Pavilion a cornucopia of coupons and vouchers valued at $150 for a mere $60. Fans get four lawn passes to either the Christian rock House Party on Sept. 7 or the Travis Tritt show on Sept. 27, as well as four concession coupons, four free lawn chair rentals and four passes to the amphitheatre's cozy Backstage Bar and Grill. Free VIP Parking is available for select events, and the venue plans to have exclusive member pre-sales for concerts in the future. And yes, an ultra-hip membership card is included.

Oops!
In the "Art Mahal" section of my last column, I erroneously reported that Chester Smith was backing the legendary Taj Mahal on drums in the trio that played the Museum of Art Aug. 15. Turns out, Kester Smith has been playing drums with Taj since the mid-'70s and even appears on Taj's new Tone Cool release with The Hula Blues, "Henapepe Dream." No word yet as if to Kester has either an Uncle Chester or Fester. EndBlock

Please e-mail Grayson with your Raleigh news: dgcurrin@unity.ncsu.edu. He loves people, really.

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