From hymns to traditional carols to pop-rock standards, music is inextricably wrapped up in the holiday season, a fact not lost on local artists who are presenting Christmas concerts at area venues.
The festivities run right up until Christmas Day. Next week, we'll have more information of yuletide shows by Lucero, Drew Holcomb, Jason D. Williams, Snowglobe and Darrell Petties, among others, but meantime, here's a week's worth of musical presents to unwrap:
One (hopefully) doesn't usually think of Jägermeister when making out their wish list, but the licorice digestif maker will be handing out swag at local metal band This Tragic Day's third annual "This Tragic Christmas" concert at the New Daisy Theater (330 Beale). A fundraiser for the Memphis Food Bank, the bill also includes Knoxville's Straight Line Stitch as well as locals Artifas, SEED, and Skyline Divide.
Given the thrashy sound of the bands, concertgoers shouldn't expect a lot of lilting holiday melodies at the show, which also doubles as a party for the digital release of This Tragic Day's self-titled debut. But the band's frontman, Chris Featherstone, says the Christmas spirit will most definitely be present.
"Last year we had a couple of trees on stage," he says "We'll have Christmas lights up. It will be festive."
Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets: $8 in advance, $10 at the door, or $8 at the door with two cans of food. Advance tickets available by phone at 866-468-7630, at the box office and online at newdaisy.com. Call 901-525-8979 for more information.
Best-selling Christian artist John Angotti continues his "Prepare ye The Way For Christmas" tour with a stop in his hometown Friday at the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts (255 N. Main).
7 p.m. Tickets: $37 and $52 plus taxes and fees; available at the box office and through Ticketmaster. For more information, call 901-576-1201 or visit memphistravel.com/conventions/cannon-center.
Former Memphian Peter Hyrka (Human Radio) returns home to Otherlands Coffeebar (641 S. Cooper) with his hot club jazz trio The Gypsy Hombres. In addition to swing standards and originals, the group, which also includes Rory Hoffman and Jason Oettel, will perform selections from their acclaimed Django Bells Christmas disc.
8 p.m. Cover: $12. Call 901-278-4994 or visit otherlandscoffeebar.com for more information.
British Invasion stars Herman's Hermits ("I'm Into Something Good," "I'm Henery the Eighth, I Am") come to Tunica Friday and Saturday with their "An Olde English Christmas" show, featuring the band's original singer Peter Noone, at the Gold Strike Casino's Millennium Theater (1010 Casino Center Drive, Tunica Resorts, Miss.). In addition, Gold Strike will be offering free pictures with Santa on Saturday and Sunday and free viewings of its spectacular Christmas decorations throughout the season.
Shangri-La Records has been staging an annual Christmas show since the '90s. This year's lineup includes the art rock ensemble Tiger High, power poppers The Ultracats, and Shangri-La owner Jared McStay's own Brill Building-inspired Wuvbirds.
Doors: 9 p.m. Admission: $5 plus a can of food for the Memphis Food Bank. For more information, call 901-278-8663 or visit hitonememphis.com.
A diverse lineup of artists come together Saturday for Brister Street productions' "Winter Charity Showcase," a benefit for The Dorothy Day House of Hospitality to be held at The Edge Coffeehouse (532 S. Cooper), 3-8 p.m. Saturday.
The event features performances by Marcela Pinilla, Nick Black, The Chinese Connection Dub Embassy, Voice of Golden Eagle and Stereo Alley, as well as spoken word poetry from Knowledge Nick and Steve Fox. Admission is free, but attendees are asked to bring any of the following items for the charity: liquid laundry detergent, baby wipes, baby powder, toothpaste, forever stamps, white copier paper, toilet tissue, paper towels, small paper plates, size 3 diapers, Target gift cards, and AA and AAA batteries.
The seasonal spirit continues at Otherlands Saturday with "Christmastravaganzafest!," a show featuring singer-songwriters Chris Milam, Darien Clea, and Kris Acklen, who are currently accepting holiday song requests on the event's Facebook page.
8 p.m. Cover: $5. Call 901-278-4994 or visit otherlandscoffeebar.com for more information.
Local British Invasion tribute band Jeffrey & Pacemakers (featuring members of '80s Memphis band The Crime and Jerry Lee Lewis' band) play their third annual "Christmas Time (Is Here Again)" show at the Hi-Tone (1913 Poplar) Sunday. The namesake song, which The Beatles cut in 1967 as a Christmas gift for their fan club, will likely be the only holiday song the band plays that day, but it comes with a very special guest sitting in who made his debut with the group last year.
"I've got a friend who dresses up like Saint Nicholas. You'd think this guy was Santa Claus. He just freaks adults out," says frontman Jeff Golightly. "He comes walking in the door with the sleigh bells, and we take off on 'Christmas Time (Is Here Again)' and the place goes absolutely bonkers."
4 p.m. Cover: $10, children under 15 free. Advance tickets available at hitonememphis.com. For more information, call 901-278-8663.