Loudon Wainwright III knocks up Toad's PlaceYou're probably more connected to Loudon Wainwright III than you think. Perhaps you know of his children, musicians Rufus and Martha? Or maybe you remember Wainwright as the singing surgeon Captain Spalding on "M*A*S*H," or from his more recent roles in "Big Fish" or "The 40 Year Old Virgin." You may have even heard his new album, "Strange Weirdos," which was the soundtrack to the movie "Knocked Up." Yes, Wainwright has been lurking in the shadows of pop culture for years; you might as well go see him, since you've probably already heard him. Wainwright performs at Toad's Place Wednesday, Oct. 3. Doors at 7 p.m. $25. 648-TOAD or visit www.toadsplacerva.com. -- Sarah Mogin
The Jonas Brothers at the Classic AmphitheaterMusical teen sensations have left an indelible mark on pop culture usually in the form of bubble-gum summer jams that ride the charts for a few months before vanishing from the airwaves. The Jonas Brothers (average age 17) are the latest in the valiant line of Menudos and New Kids on the Block to try their hand at young superstardom. The trio of siblings who seem to do an awful lot of posing in vintage T-shirts and blazers are power pop in the classic sense of the word. They're replete with catchy hooks, pop culture lyrics and a fixation on the pain of relationships that seems to be a little beyond their years. It's like somebody in the sound booth set the knob at Maroon 5 and let it ride. The Jonas Brothers play the Classic Amphitheater Oct. 7 at 3 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call 345-7223 or visit www.richmondracewaycomplex.com.
Robert Randolph's family affair at URWhen it comes to Robert Randolph, music is a rip-roaring funky gospel-rock family affair. Trained in church as a pedal-steel guitarist, Randolph was listed as one of Rolling Stone's 100 greatest guitarists of all time. The second studio album of Robert Randolph & the Family Band, "Colorblind," is a groovy, energetic endeavor laced with classic rock riffs. Guesting on the album are Eric Clapton, Dave Matthews and soul diva Leela James. Randolph and company seem to have toned down the gospel and blues of their earlier sound in favor of more upbeat funk rock. Randolph says his main influences are Stevie Ray Vaughan and '70s funk bands. Known for their lively stage performances, the band brings its highly danceable jams to the Robins Center of the Modlin Center for the Arts at the University of Richmond, Thursday, Oct. 4, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call the Modlin Center box office at 289-8980, or go to modlin.richmond.edu. Olivia Beatty
Shhhhh!It's safe to say that The Whispers know a thing or two about good R&B. They've been crooning for 44 years, producing 40 charting hits, seven gold and two platinum albums along the way. These four silky-voiced balladeers create luscious harmonies that still have ladies swooning and tickets selling. Aside from losing one band member to illness, the band's lineup hasn't changed since 1971. Treat yourself to an evening of good old-fashioned soul harmonies at the Landmark Theater Friday, Oct. 5. Songstress Stephanie Mills and After 7 open at 7:30 p.m. $42.50-$75. Call 646-4213. O.B.
Hudost and Rattlemouth at The Camel
Inspired by Rumi, the Sufi poet of love, HuDost's music is an "alternative-world rock, country and eastern fusion." The band's core is made up of singer-songwriter duo Moksha Sommer on voice and harmonium and Jemal Wade Hines on voice, guitars, bazouki and bendir. For live performances, the two are joined by four other performers who add flute, bass and percussion to the mix. The Montreal/New York based HuDost casts a wide net of musical influences- from Bulgarian and Balkan to Farsi, Turkish and Arabic. The group adds elements of folk, pop, rock and gospel to the traditional world music. Opening for HuDost is local world music favorite Rattlemouth. The sax, drums, bass and guitar outfit bring their own original musical sensibilities to African and Lebanese arrangements. The result is an energetic and exotic sound that moves you to the dance floor. Catch the double dose of world fusion fun at The Camel, Saturday, Oct. 6 at 8 p.m. $9-$12. O.B.
Kasey Anderson at Shenanigan's
Kasey Anderson said the goal of his latest album, "The Reckoning," released on Sept. 11, was to "create characters that would resonate, clearly conveying the hope, rage and fear that [I] saw in the lives of so many, regardless of culture or geography." It's a lofty claim for the third release of an Oregon-based alt-country folk rocker, but Anderson might just have the goods to deliver. Anderson has left behind much of the melancholy folk of his last album in favor of a twangier rock sound reminiscent of John Mellencamp. Anderson's tour brings him to Shenanigans Eatery and Pub on Thursday, Oct. 4, at 8 p.m. 264-5010. -O.B.