Geoff Muldaur & Jim Kweskin

Americana roots enthusiasts long before it was even considered a specific category, Geoff Muldaur and Jim Kweskin go way back to the early-'60s Boston-Cambridge folk scene. There in 1963 they formed the Jim Kweskin Jug Band, which, in sharp contrast to the earnest solemnity of the larger folk revival, played a raucous, sometimes ribald, slightly dizzy mix of folk, blues, ragtime, country, early jazz, and novelty tunes—the musical equivalent of R. Crumb's cartoons. Other notable members included fiddler Richard Greene, banjoist Bill Keith, jug and washtub bass player Fritz Richmond, and singer Maria D'Amato, who married Muldaur and later had a well-known nocturnal assignation at the oasis. The band fizzled out by the end of the '60s, but not without influencing the likes of the Lovin' Spoonful and Grateful Dead. Muldaur, a fine blues singer and guitarist, later played with Paul Butterfield's Better Days. He and Kweskin, an adept finger picker and wry vocalist, separately put out a handful of solo albums but eventually mostly fell off the radar until the last few years. The pair got reacquainted at a memorial concert for Richmond and started doing duo gigs like this one. Both were also part of last year's well-received album The Texas Sheiks, which covered some of the same quirky traditional tunes the pair is likely to do here, such as "Blue in the Bottle" and "Under the Chicken Tree." Minneapolis's own Spider John Koerner is an old running partner of both, so if he's in the neighborhood...?
Sun., June 27, 7:30 p.m., 2010

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