- The Washington Times - Saturday, September 14, 2002

The biggest show of the season is clearly the Rolling Stones, but with the only tickets left for that Oct. 4 show at FedEx Field in the $300 range, you better have your tickets in hand or have alternate concert plans this fall.
Luckily, enough great artists are coming through town that the money saved on Stones tickets could bankroll plenty of other excellent, smaller-venue concerts.
The Stones sure aren't the only long-running act still on the road, even if the group is among the few still to have most of its core members. Country-and-blues rockers Little Feat play Lisner Auditorium Oct. 14, '70s rock staple Foghat plays with Joan Jett and the Blackhearts Oct. 1 at the Lincoln Theatre, and the psychedelic rockers of the Moody Blues play DAR Constitution Hall Oct. 10.
If you can't get into the Moody Blues show, perhaps a jaunt over to the State Theatre in Falls Church is in order, as Jefferson Starship plays there Oct. 10. Don Henley, back in the solo game after a tour with the Eagles, plays Constitution Hall Oct. 15.
The only tour that comes close to the magnitude of the Stones' show this fall is by the Grateful Dead, another '60s staple. With the death of Jerry Garcia, the remaining members have retired that name and are touring as the Other Ones. Although never as radio-friendly as the Stones, the Dead still has a die-hard fan base that should make this show a quick sellout. The Other Ones play the MCI Center Nov. 15.
For fans who want a similar Dead experience, Dark Star Orchestra is returning to the State Theatre for three nights. The band re-creates Grateful Dead concerts in their entirety, with period instruments and note-for-note reproductions that go beyond the typical cover-band shtick. Dark Star plays Oct. 31 through Nov. 2.
Baby boomers aren't the only ones likely to get nostalgic this fall. Wire, one of the most influential early punk bands, comes to the 9:30 Club Friday. The alternative rock act the Violent Femmes also plays there Oct. 6, and Bryan Ferry, former lead singer of Roxy Music, appears Nov. 16.
Adding to the variety, Bob Mould, the acclaimed lead singer-guitarist of Husker Du, comes to the Birchmere Nov. 2. Genre-shifter Elvis Costello plays Oct. 26 at Constitution Hall, and the prog-rockers of Rush play the Baltimore Arena Oct. 15.
In a funkier vein, the early '90s hip-hop group Digital Underground brings the "humpty dance" to Jaxx Sept. 28. It should provide a nice counterpoint to the angrier rap of Public Enemy, which plays Sept. 19 at Nation.
Jaxx also plays host to old-school heavy-metal acts Thin Lizzy Nov. 1 and Molly Hatchet Dec. 14.
The next generation of musicians certainly is not to be outdone. The early rap-metal pioneers of Korn play a WHFS show Oct. 11 at the Patriot Center, and St. Louis rapper Nelly brings his hits to the MCI Center Oct. 12.
Wilco, which released one of the year's best albums, "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot," plays two nights at the 9:30 Club Oct. 14 and 15. Jay Bennett, who left the group after "Yankee," plays a solo show Sept. 23 at Iota.
The 9:30 Club also plays host to melancholy singer Aimee Mann Sept. 29 and the energetic rock of Sleater-Kinney Oct. 20.
Though not bringing in household names, the Black Cat has a number of quality acts coming through: indie rockers Spoon Sept. 24, Doug Martsch (frontman of Built to Spill) Oct. 10 and Southwestern rockers Calexico on Nov. 1.
Other good bets include the introspective rockers Counting Crows, who will be at the Smith Center at George Washington University Oct. 27; the pop-punk band Box Car Racer (which features two-thirds of the members of Blink-182) Nov. 2 at Nation; and piano balladeer Ben Folds, who plays a solo show at the Warner Theatre Oct. 16.
Country fans are the real winners this fall, as some of the top young and old talent in the genre will be coming through town. For those who like more heartbreak and less twang in their country, Neko Case, the alt-country crooner born in Alexandria, plays the Black Cat Oct. 2, and Ryan Adams, former head of Whiskeytown, plays two nights solo at the 9:30 Club Oct. 3 and 4.
Country outlaw Merle Haggard plays the Birchmere Sept. 22 and 23, followed by Ray Price, the venerable country legend, Oct. 12. Bluegrass fans can catch Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys, also at the Birchmere, Nov. 23.
The best pairing of generations has to be tour stalwart Willie Nelson with young "newgrass" outfit Nickel Creek. They play together Oct. 31 at the Patriot Center.
The ever-popular country quartet the Statler Brothers is making its final tour this fall. The Virginia group plays at the Greater Frederick Fair Tuesday before its final date in Salem, Va., Oct. 26.
Jazz enthusiasts also have a number of good bets this fall. Fans of the movie "Calle 54" should be happy to learn that, reminiscent of the Buena Vista Social Club boon of a few years back, the movie's musical stars are going out on tour.
Prominent Latin jazz names in "Calle 54 the Concert" include Bebo Valdes, Dave Valentin, Andy Gonzalez and a number of others. They play Oct. 5 at the Kennedy Center. Saxophonist Gato Barbieri (also featured in the movie) plays the Birchmere Oct. 13.
Blues Alley has a full docket of big names, including the Yellowjackets Oct. 3 and 4, George Duke Oct. 24 through 27 and Branford Marsalis Nov. 16 through 19. Bruce Hornsby comes through the Birchmere Nov. 5 and 6.
It's hard to imagine finding a more varied lineup of fall acts, and thankfully, it's a concert season both baby boomers and their children will find agreeable.

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