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Dayton Music Insider: Auld Lang Syne

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We’ve made it to the end of another year, one that has been full of amazing music events. I’m so grateful to the entire music community in Dayton for making it such a special year!

It’s also that time of year that we recall the people and places we’ve lost too, and hold those dear to us that much closer. In that spirit, this is the final week to see shows at Gilly’s, and pay tribute to the memory of Jerry Gillotti.

As we ring in the New Year, let’s take a moment to remember to him, and all the people who have made our lives special. Cheers, fellow music fan! Here’s to many more music memories in 2018!

Wednesday December 27th


The first of such signature events happens Wednesday night at the Jam for Jerry Jazz Session at Gilly’s. This is one of two final events at the beloved venue, this one in memory of Jerry Gillotti, who brought jazz to Dayton for half a century. It’s a wonderful way for the musicians he inspired to remember him. Music from 8pm-11pm.

Thursday December 28th

For rock fans, the annual Dayton Underground Series End of Year Bash is truly a “don’t miss” event, featuring three fantastic local bands: RINDThunderTaker, and DuderusJoin in the fun at Oscar’s Bar from 8pm – 12am. No cover! $20 VIP Passes available at

Thursday evening you can also catch Showcase Thursdays At Yellow Cab Tavern from 8:00 pm – 11:30 pm. The line-up of local talent includes some great ones this week, including: Golden Guy, Debbie Decasio, Noah Rauch, Chris Ball, among others! No cover.


In the mood for Oysters and Jazz? Head over for the weekly special at Hannah’s, hosted by The Next One Up. Event 8:30-11:30pm. No cover.

Bluegrass fans are in for a real treat out in Beavercreek with “The Folkin’ Grassholes“. Make your reservations today at Spinoza’s Gourmet Pizza & Salads for this special holiday hoedown! Show 6:30-9:30pm.

Friday December 29th

Gilly’s Last Show takes place Friday night with local Blues vets, The Doug Hart Band and The Eric Jerardi Band. These gentleman are ready to deliver an epic sendoff for Jerry and the memory of Gilly’s. Do stop on out, and give the historic venue your final goodbyes. Doors open at 7:00pm. Show starts at 8:00pm. Admission $12 at the door.

24909627_10212351450194188_1622586178073701909_nThe ladies take over the stage at Blind Bob’s Bar Friday night, with 4 female fronted punk rock bands: Secret Circle Society, Sonic Rift, Useless Fox, Bloody Lips. They are ready to get your NYE weekend rockin’ early! Doors 9pm. $5 cover. 21+

The always entertaining Todd the Fox Trio performs with the Random Flashbacks at Hannah’s Friday night. Doors at 9pm. Music at 10pm. 18+ No cover!

South of town, you can enjoy a lovely evening of jazz with the Ian Mortensen Trio at the Blue Note Bistro in Miamisburg. They’ll be playing some originals too! 8pm-11pm. No cover. All ages. Calling ahead to make reservations is recommended: (937) 247-3000.

Saturday December 30th

Blues fans have quite the weekend in store between Friday night at Gilly’s, and then on Saturday with Scotty Bratcher and Noah Hunt at Oddbody’s Music Room. Wow! Not the weekend to stay at home, that’s for sure! Scotty is simply an amazing guitarist. If you haven’t had a listen, make sure you do! Doors 7pm. Show 8pm. $15 advance. $20 day of show. 18+

Rock’a’billy is on the menu at Tumbleweed Connection in the Oregon District, with Cherry Lee & The Hot Rod HoundsThis talented crew gets the place swingin’ and dancin’ all night long! Always a super fun time! Doors 9:30pm. $5 cover. 21+

The Johnson Treatment, a young and very talented ensemble takes the stage at Blind Bob’s Saturday night. If you like funk, blues, soul, and everything in between, you’ll be lovin’ the music with this group. Awesome vocals, and a great vibe. Doors 9pm. $5 cover. 21+

Original rock band Brother Rabi and the Soul Seekers have started working on their debut album, and are taking a break from recording, to play a show at the Oregon Express. Celebrate with the from 10pm-1am.

Sunday December 31st

NYE_GrandTour_1718_LandingThe annual DPAA New Year’s Eve celebration is always a feast for the senses. The performance itself will feature all three facets of the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance: dancers from Dayton Ballet, vocalists from Dayton Opera, and the instrumentalists of the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra. And, as always, a splash of color ends the evening with a balloon drop at the finale. Running from 8 pm to 10 pm, gives you time after to head to the next party or home for midnight! Prior to the concert, tasty appetizers and sweets will be available for purchase in the Wintergarden, and during intermission the audience can toast one another with flutes of champagne. Tickets start at $19. For tickets, call 228-3630 or visit

One of the funnest New Years Eve parties of the night is with Freakquency at Blind Bob’sLast year it was standing room only, this year will yet again be another epic night of great music, high energy, good vibes, and dancing! Simply a fabulous group of musicians who will leave you in great spirits for 2018! Doors 9pm. $10. 21+

Also downtown, you can enjoy the John Welton Trio at Hannah’s on Ludlow. He’ll be singing the old Waterband favorites, his fresh new originals and some carefully selected covers. Trombonist Brad Kepperly and multi-instrumentalist Jeremy Canonico will be accompanying so it’s sure to be an interesting night of musical fun and surprises. 9pm-2am.

It’s going to be a funky time at One Eyed Jacks with a sweet line-up of local bands including Krunk Town BoogieCozmikSpirit, Crosley Court, Founding Fathers, and late night set with B2B DJ set with Deejay Compton and KingTerpz. Lots of smiles at this show! Formal dress optional. 18+ Music at 9pm. $5 at the door. 

Certainly one of the biggest parties of the night will be south in Middletown with the party boys themselves, Glostik Willy! They are celebrating the new year at Old Crow along with Downtown Brown, Conscious Pilot, Derick Howard, and FlowPoetry. Extra fun? They have rented the entire Red Roof Inn at the rate of $60 for all their fans! You must use this code when reeserving: PROMO CODE: GLO17. Rooms very limited! Show at Old Crow starts at 9pm. Doors 8pm. Tickets $10 at the door.

Happy New Year! And as always, thank you for supporting live music!

Your Dayton Music Insider,

Libby Ballengee

Note: This blog was updated after first published to update musicians performing at Showcase Thursday at Yellow Cab. 

Note to Readers:  The information above is for December 2017. This is a listing of interesting shows in the Miami Valley region, but is by no means definitive. There are always lots of shows, and so much space and time to touch upon them all. If I don’t list a price, I’m not sure what it is. Typically cover charges for local shows are $5. Click hyperlinks to find out more about the bands, venues, and events, including start times, directions, and ticket information.  You can keep up with my live music adventures on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Cheers!

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