Claire Lynch at Ashland Coffee and TeaClaire Lynch's songs cover a range of tempos and experiences just as any good bluegrass musician's should. Lynch began her career in the early 1990s as a member of the Alabama-based Front Porch String Band. A few years later she created her own band, which consists of Missy Raines on bass, Jim Hurst on guitar and Jason Thomas on mandolin and fiddle. Her lilting, delicate and high-pitched voice is just as impressive as her songwriting. Lynch's music has earned her two Grammy nominations and a "Female Vocalist of the Year" award from the International Bluegrass Music Association in 1997. Lynch plays Ashland Coffee & Tea Friday, Oct. 19, at 8 p.m. $18-$23. 798-1702. Olivia Beatty
Robert Schimmel at the Funny BoneRobert Schimmel is a regular on "The Howard Stern Show," so it's no surprise that his comedy pushes the envelope on sexual humor, redefining adult content. In addition to joking about sex, airplanes and his daughters, Schimmel uses his health problems as candid material fodder. In 1998 he had a heart attack, and in 2000 he was diagnosed with cancer, which has since gone into remission. He discusses his experiences openly, even touching on losing his son to cancer. Schimmel has released many comedy albums and has appeared on "The Simpsons," "Late Night With Conan O'Brien" and in his own HBO special. The comedian performs at the Funny Bone Thursday, Oct. 18, through Sunday, Oct. 21. Thursday's show is at 7:30 p.m., shows on Friday and Saturday are at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m., and Sunday's show is at 7 p.m. $20-$22. 521-8900. O.B.
The Bonamassa Blues at Toad's PlaceJoe Bonamassa started playing the guitar at the age of 4, was strumming like a pro by the time he was 8 and opened for B.B. King at 12. He's continued to roll with the heavy-hitters in the blues-rock field, playing with the likes of Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, George Thorogood and Joe Cocker. The blues vet has released five albums since his solo debut in 2000. His latest, "Sloe Gin," spent five weeks at the top spot on the Billboard blues chart. The song collection includes some acoustic guitar tracks alongside his typical heavy blues sound, reflecting the inspiration of the early work of Rod Stewart. Bonamassa brings his own brand of hardcore and acoustic blues to Toad's Place Thursday, Oct. 18, at 9 p.m. $20-$35. Call (800) 514-3849 O.B.
Guster at Toad's Place
Regulars on the college tour circuit, Guster will end its current tour playing on a cruise ship with the Barenaked Ladies. But before that, the band will make a stop in Richmond. Guster combines beautiful vocal harmonies with jangly acoustic guitars to create toe-tapping indie rock. The three band members met as freshman at Boston's Tufts University in 1991. By 1998 the trio had a deal with a major record label and was performing on "Conan O'Brien." Their latest release, 2006's "Ganging Up on the Sun," produced the indie radio staple "One Man Wrecking Machine." Catch Guster with Brett Dennon at Toad's Place on Tuesday, Oct. 23, at 8 p.m. $20-$25. 648-TOAD. O.B.