The Columbus music scene is gearing up for festival season. Local bands are embarking on the road or making a u-turn back to the Midwest in preparation for some hometown headlining slots. However, there’s still plenty to be excited about back home in Columbus. There may not be a hallmark holiday to celebrate this month around, but we’re hitting that halfway point in the year where groups are trying out some new tricks to perfect themselves for the summer so their sets don’t get stale from last year.
But who said that the Columbus music scene can’t make April special? With two unique celebrations and a cover show saluting one of the longest-running bands ever, there’s still a lot on the docket to begin the second quarter of 2019. Check out the full list below.
April Phool’s — A Night of Phish @ Skully’s Music Diner
With no fully-dedicated concert holiday this month, we’ll have to settle for an April Fool’s Day show. Although the number of holiday-themed shows will be lacking in the coming months, local music production Weird Music presents a night that will surely be reeling in many phans. Members of adopted Columbus-by-way-of-Dayton group The Werks will be joining forces with local jam staples Electric Orange Peel and SassafraZ to form The Watchful Horsemen. If you’re looking to indulge yourself in some live technical mastery in April, there’s no better way than diving in with this salute to Phish.
Time: 7 p.m. Date: Monday, April 1 Address: 1151 N. High St. Admission: $8 adv. / $10 DOS
Saintseneca @ Newport Music Hall
When Saintseneca made their triumphant return to Columbus this past August following the release of “Pillar of Na,” the packed back room of the Wexner Center indicated that the band would need more space the next time they would return home. Fast forward a half-year later and Saintseneca are now headling the longstanding Newport Music Hall. The critically acclaimed and well-received record helped to further expose the band’s folk-rock sound and instrumental proficiency to a larger audience, catapulting them into the High Street spotlight. Additional local support will come from therapeutic lyricist Dominique Larue and alternative rockers snarls.
Time: 7 p.m. Date: Wednesday, April 10 Address: 1722 N. High St. Admission: $12 adv. / $15 DOS
Hoodoo Soul Band 25 Year Anniversary Weekend @ Rumba Cafe
Becoming synonymous with Sunday Funday and church over the years, the Hoodoo Soul Band has been bringing the funk, rhythm and blues for a quarter century now. Giving those who don’t live conventional 9-5 lifestyles or value sleep a community to embrace and tunes to smile and dance along to, the magic that resonates throughout Rumba Cafe on Sunday nights is cultivated through a group effort of good vibes. The Hoodoo Soul Band will be celebrating all of that over the course of the second weekend of April. There will be three chances to catch the local legends at the 21-plus event.
Miller and The Hunks/Tourist Trap/Silvis @ The Shrunken Head
It’s always a party when Miller and The Hunks roll through The Shrunken Head. With a bill that’s filled to the brim with acts that consistently pump out high-energy rock-n-roll and memorable live sets in Columbus, this show will surely get you in the mood to lose those sleeves until fall creeps in. With unique sounds and introspective lyrics sneaking in between roaring guitars, Miller and The Hunks are here to prove that they’re not just a cog in the local music scene. Also, with Gnarbeque just around the corner, Tourist Trap will surely be in pristine playing mode. Groovy indie rockers Silvis round out the Columbus portion of the lineup.
Time: 8 p.m. Date: Friday, April 19 Address: 251 W. 5th Ave.
4/20 Celebration @ Woodlands Tavern
If you’re looking to get into the festival spirit before things fully kick off, a handful of some of the most talented local reggae musicians have cultivated a near-perfect experience this April. The 4/20 celebration taking place at Woodland’s will feature both legacy acts and up-and-comers in the Columbus reggae community. The festivities will include performances from The Quasi Kings (two sets), The Ark Band, the Andy Shaw Band, Urban Tropic, Devil’s Lettuce, Lungu Vybz, Mark Hunter and Jenny Arcade.
Time: 4:20 p.m. Date: Saturday, April 20 Address: 1200 W. 3rd Ave. Admission: $10 GA
CD102.5 Presents Dave Buker & the Historians @ Rumba Cafe
The delightful Americana of Dave Buker & the Historians once again are teaming up with local heroes CD102.5. After winning a contest to play before Spoon, Alvvays and The Aces at Express Live at the end of 2017, the group is now ready to unleash a full album into the world. Although they have proven multiple times to be able to own the big stage, stepping down to the intimate Rumba Cafe room will give both the band and fans a chance to intimately interact with lead singer Dave Buker’s lyrics. Andicus and James Wooster will be providing additional support.
Time: 7 p.m Date: Friday, April 26 Address: 2507 Summit St. Admission: $8 / $10 under 21