Country journeyman Buddy Miller traveled a long road to reach the gates of last year's superb Your Love and Other Lies (Hightone). Back in the 60s he cut his teeth on bluegrass and brushed them with psychedelia, moving around from San Francisco to New York, Austin, and Los Angeles before ending up in Nashville. While in LA he hooked up with Jim Lauderdale, and the duo soon gained moderate popularity as a live act. The partnership was telling of Miller's rich sound, which tastefully tempers hard-core honky-tonk roots with nonglossy pop savvy. Miller stakes out a true composite of styles: folk, rock, and soul are seamlessly integrated into his hearty twang, and his slightly raspy singing ties everything together. Last year's album powerfully showcased Miller's stripped-down approach: it was recorded mostly in a Nashville living room with such guests as Emmylou Harris, Lucinda Williams, Dan Penn, Lauderdale, and Miller's wife, Julie. Put all of them together and you can imagine how Miller sounds. He performs as part of a swell traveling showcase for Hightone, which also features Dale Watson, Dave Alvin, and Big Sandy & His Fly-Rite Boys. Friday, 9:30 PM, FitzGerald's, 6615 Roosevelt, Berwyn; 708-788-2188. PETER MARGASAK
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Michael Wilson.