Son Volt frontman to play Asheville Music Zone

Well, the big show coming up this weekend is Tool. Anyone out there that likes Tool already knows this and has already bought tickets.

So, what else is out there for the listening public? On Wednesday October 10th, Jay Farrar will be playing the Asheville Music Zone.

Jay Farrar is the front man for the band Son Volt. The band mixes traditional country music with classic rock and punk influences. Son Volt has released three albums to critical acclaim since 1993. Son Volt’s last album, “Wide Swing Tremolo,” released in 1998, showed the band reaching out and growing past their roots.

In 2000, Jay decided to do a solo project while Son Volt was on sabbatical. The result of his endeavor was the album “Sebastopol”, released on Sep. 25, 2001. The album includes 14 new tracks recorded over the summer of 2000. It is a dark, brooding mix of mostly acoustic fare. The album was recorded with help from members of the Flaming Lips, Superchunk, and Blood Oranges.

Jay’s musical roots date back to Belleville, IL. Belleville is a decaying industrial town 25 miles southeast of St. Louis. There, with friends Jeff Tweedy and Max Heidorn, Jay created the highly influential band Uncle Tupelo in 1988. The band mixed influences like Black Flag and The Sex Pistols with Gram Parsons and Roy Acuff. The band often paid homage to their inspiration. They often would play a blue grass cover of Black Flag’s “Gimmie, Gimmie, Gimmie” followed by a punk version of the country standard “Orange Blossom Special.” So went Uncle Tupelo.

What they created was some of the most deeply affecting music of all time. Their songs relied on quick starts and stops, and heartfelt lyrics. They were real people playing real music. Their first album, “No Depression,” went on to name the movement and fanzine that encompassed the band.

After four highly influential albums, Jay just lost interest in the band and walked away to form Son Volt. Jeff Tweedy went on to form Wilco, a band that has also gone on to great critical and fan acclaim. Son Volt scored a minor radio hit with their song “Drown” in 1995. Wilco released “Summer Teeth” two years ago, one of the most ambitious album yet undertaken by an alternative country band.

Tickets may be purchased at the box office or at Wiz Records in Asheville. The Music Zone is located at 81 Broadway downtown.

Driving Time: One hour, six minutes Mileage: 47.8 miles