Let November light up your life

Grande Illumination in Dayton. FILE

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Grande Illumination in Dayton. FILE

Fill your days with music, theater and plenty of holiday fun

TOP EVENTS

1) Funk Symposium

For the second time, the University of Dayton is shining a spotlight on a special part of this city’s rich musical history with the Dayton Funk Symposium Wednesday through Saturday, Nov. 3 through 6. The event features performers, scholars and authors such as Rickey Vincent, who delivers the keynote address: Funk and Afrofuturism: The Past, Present and Future of the Funk, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov 4.

The Dayton Funk All-Stars and some very special guests will join Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra for “Dayton Funk: A Tribute to Dayton’s Funk Legacy.” The symposium-closing concert is at the Schuster Center, Second and Main streets, Dayton, at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 6. Cost: $27 to $90.

While the concert is a ticketed event, most of the symposium’s offerings are free. Other participants include Dr. Scot Brown, James “Diamond” Williams of the Ohio Players, poet Herbert Martin and Dr. Danielle D. Maggio. Visit udayton.edu.

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“Cats” will be at the Schuster Center starting Tuesday, Nov. 23. It runs through Sunday, Nov. 28, though there is no show on Thanksgiving. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: MATTHEW MURPHY

“Cats” will be at the Schuster Center starting Tuesday, Nov. 23. It runs through Sunday, Nov. 28, though there is no show on Thanksgiving. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: MATTHEW MURPHY

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“Cats” will be at the Schuster Center starting Tuesday, Nov. 23. It runs through Sunday, Nov. 28, though there is no show on Thanksgiving. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: MATTHEW MURPHY

Credit: MATTHEW MURPHY

2) “Cats”

This year is the 40th anniversary of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Tony Award-winning “Cats.” To mark the occasion, the current touring show features new updates such as sound design by Mick Potter and choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler. The Premier Health Broadway in Dayton series presents “Cats” at the Schuster Center, Second and Main streets, Dayton, on Tuesday, Nov. 23. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, 1:30 and 7 p.m. Friday, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, and 1 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday. Cost: $26 to $89. “Cats” runs through Sunday, Nov. 28. There is no show on Thursday, Nov. 25. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

3) Literary Peace Prize

Gloria Steinem is coming to town to interview Margaret Atwood, the 2020-2021 winner of the Ambassador Richard C. Holbrooke Distinguished Achievement Award. The occasion is Dayton Literary Peace Prize: A Conversation with the Authors at Victoria Theatre, 138 N. Main St., Dayton, at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov., 13. Dayton Literary Peace Prize Foundation hosts this event to honor the winning authors from 2020 and 2021. Pulitzer Prize-winner Gilbert King will moderate a panel featuring Alexander Starritt, Nguyen Phan Que Mai, Ariana Neumann, Jordan Ritter Conn and other authors recognized by the foundation this year. $20-$150. 937-228-3630 or www.daytonlive.org.

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Superstar ventriloquist Jeff Dunham returns to town with Peanut, Melvin the Superhero Guy and other onstage partners for a concert at the Nutter Center in Fairborn on Thursday, Nov. 18. CONTRIBUTED

Superstar ventriloquist Jeff Dunham returns to town with Peanut, Melvin the Superhero Guy and other onstage partners for a concert at the Nutter Center in Fairborn on Thursday, Nov. 18. CONTRIBUTED

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Superstar ventriloquist Jeff Dunham returns to town with Peanut, Melvin the Superhero Guy and other onstage partners for a concert at the Nutter Center in Fairborn on Thursday, Nov. 18. CONTRIBUTED

4) Jeff Dunham

Ventriloquist Jeff Dunham continues to be one of the world’s biggest comedy draws, which can be contributed to his relentless tour schedule. The internationally-beloved performer has more than 60 upcoming dates on the books in the United States and abroad stretching into July. Dunham returns to the Nutter Center, 3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy., Fairborn, at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 18. Cost: $52.50. This is rescheduled from several postponed dates. Tickets will be honored from previous postponements. Call 937-775-4789 or visit www.nuttercenter.com.

5) “The Great Gatsby”

Nearly 100 years after F. Scott Fitzgerald published his now classic novel, “The Great Gatsby,” humans remain enamored by the lifestyles of the rich and scandalous. Local theatergoers can feed that need in a new local production opening at Dayton Playhouse, 1301 E. Siebenthaler Ave., Dayton, on Friday, Nov. 5. Matthew Smith directs a cast that includes Dustin Schwab as Jay Gatsby, Olivia Ekler as Daisy Buchanan and Brandon Shockney as Nick Carraway. Show times are 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sundays. Cost: $18 and $20. Season tickets are available. Dayton Playhouse presents “The Great Gatsby” through Sunday, Nov. 14. Call 937-424-8477 or visit www.daytonplayhouse.org.

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6) The Contemporary

The Contemporary Dayton, 25 W. Fourth St., Dayton will be showing the provocative work of three artists in exhibitions opening in its gallery space inside the Dayton Arcade on Friday, Nov. 5. “Kneel,” a room-sized installation from Willis “Bing” Davis, is featured alongside Tuan Andrew Nguyen’s “The Boat People” and “The Empire is Falling” by Samuel Levi Jones. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Open until 8 p.m. the first Friday of each month. These exhibitions are on display through January 16. Call 937-224-3822 or visit www.thecontemporarydayton.org.

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“Back on track to having fun” is the theme of the 45th Dayton Train Show at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in Dayton on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 6 and 7. CONTRIBUTED

“Back on track to having fun” is the theme of the 45th Dayton Train Show at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in Dayton on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 6 and 7. CONTRIBUTED

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“Back on track to having fun” is the theme of the 45th Dayton Train Show at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in Dayton on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 6 and 7. CONTRIBUTED

7) Dayton Train Show

Each year for more than 40 years, a local group of enthusiasts has hosted the annual Dayton Train Show. After a COVID-19 imposed year off in 2020, the Miami Valley Division 3, MCR, of the National Model Railroad association presents the 45th model expo at The Montgomery County Fairgrounds, 645 Infirmary Road, Dayton, on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 6 and 7. This year’s theme is “Back on track to having fun.” Show hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 6 and 7. Cost: $8 adults, free children 12 and younger with paid adult. Parking is free. Call 937-424-6413 or visit www.daytontrainshow.com.

8) “The Golden Girls Show!”

It has been nearly 30 years since “The Golden Girls” ended its seven-season run on NBC. However, the exploits of Dorothy, Blanche, Rose and Sophia live on in television syndication, online streaming and unique tributes like “That Golden Girls Show! A Puppet Parody.” This puppet show sendup of the classic sitcom about female friendship is presented by the Projects Unlimited Star Attractions series at Victoria Theatre, 138 N. Main St., Dayton, at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 9. Cost: $25-$45. “That Golden Girls Show!” is recommended for ages 18 and older. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

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9) Art ed show

The art work of current and retired art educators from the area will be featured in the Regional Art Ed Exhibition, a bi-annual juried show. The ninth installment of the exhibition opens in Rosewood Gallery at Rosewood Arts Centre, 2655 Olson Dr., Kettering, on Monday, Nov. 8. Fall gallery hours (through Dec. 19) are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. The Regional Art Ed Exhibition is on display through Thursday, Dec. 30. Cost: Free. Call 937-296-0294 or visit www.playkettering.org.

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Comedian-actor Nick Colletti, from the surprise Facebook Watch comedy hit, “The Real Bros of Simi Valley,” performs at Wiley’s Comedy Club in Dayton on Sunday, Nov. 21. CONTRIBUTED

Comedian-actor Nick Colletti, from the surprise Facebook Watch comedy hit, “The Real Bros of Simi Valley,” performs at Wiley’s Comedy Club in Dayton on Sunday, Nov. 21. CONTRIBUTED

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Comedian-actor Nick Colletti, from the surprise Facebook Watch comedy hit, “The Real Bros of Simi Valley,” performs at Wiley’s Comedy Club in Dayton on Sunday, Nov. 21. CONTRIBUTED

10) Nick Colletti

Comedian, actor and YouTube sensation Nick Colletti earned an even bigger following the surprise success of his Facebook Watch comedy series, “The Real Bros of Simi Valley.” Before he begins filming season three of the fake reality show, the Los Angeles-based performer is taking his talents on the road. Colletti performs at Wiley’s Comedy Club, 101 Pine St., Dayton, at 7:15 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 21. Cost: Advance online tickets are $25 general admission, $50 VIP front area seating. Call 937-224-JOKE (5653) or visit www.wileyscomedy.com.

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After last year's Virtual Grande Illumination, the annual kickoff celebration of the Dayton Holiday Festival returns to Courthouse Square in downtown Dayton on Friday, Nov. 26.CONTRIBUTED/TOM GILLIAM

Credit: Tom Gilliam

After last year's Virtual Grande Illumination, the annual kickoff celebration of the Dayton Holiday Festival returns to Courthouse Square in downtown Dayton on Friday, Nov. 26.CONTRIBUTED/TOM GILLIAM

Credit: Tom Gilliam

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After last year's Virtual Grande Illumination, the annual kickoff celebration of the Dayton Holiday Festival returns to Courthouse Square in downtown Dayton on Friday, Nov. 26.CONTRIBUTED/TOM GILLIAM

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

HOLIDAY

1) Dayton Holiday Festival

For five decades, families throughout the region have welcomed in the season with the Dayton Holiday Festival. The annual kickoff celebration, founded by Virginia Kettering in 1972, returns to Courthouse Square in downtown Dayton at 4 p.m. Friday, Nov. 26.

Dayton Holiday Festival features the Grande Illumination tree lighting, Dayton Children’s Parade Spectacular in Lights, horse-drawn wagon rides, live entertainment, Uno’s Pizza with Santa and more. Cost: Free.

That day also marks the opening of downtown holiday staples The Tikes Shoppe, Wintergarden Wonderland and Virginia Kettering’s Holiday Train Display. Call 937-224-1518 or visit www.downtowndayton.org.

2) Ringing in the Holidays

Fall is in full force and for Dayton History that means it’s time for people to start celebrating the season with Ringing in the Holidays. The annual event featuring gourmet hors d’oeuvres, desserts, specialty cocktails, live music, a silent auction and the annual Dayton’s Most Delicious Dessert contest returns to Carillon Historical Park, 1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton, from 6:30-10 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 20. Cost: $75 members, $85 non-members. Call 937-293-2841 or visit www.daytonhistory.org.

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The historic Clifton mill, built in 1802 and still working, will open its Legendary Lights for the 2021 holiday season on Friday, Nov. 26. CONTRIBUTED/TOM GILLIAM

Credit: Tom Gilliam

The historic Clifton mill, built in 1802 and still working, will open its Legendary Lights for the 2021 holiday season on Friday, Nov. 26. CONTRIBUTED/TOM GILLIAM

Credit: Tom Gilliam

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The historic Clifton mill, built in 1802 and still working, will open its Legendary Lights for the 2021 holiday season on Friday, Nov. 26. CONTRIBUTED/TOM GILLIAM

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

3) The Legendary Lights of Clifton

The Legendary Lights of Clifton continues to receive accolades for its massive holiday display, which now features more than 4-million lights illuminating the mill, the gorge, the riverbanks, trees and bridges. It was named one of USA Today’s 10 Best Readers’ Choice Travel Awards for 2020. The display opens for the season at Clifton Mill, 75 Water St., Clifton, on Friday, Nov. 26. Hours are 6-9 p.m. daily, except 6-8 p.m. December 24 and 25. Gates open nightly at 5 p.m. The Legendary Lights of Clifton is open through Thursday, Dec. 30. Cost: $10, free for children 3 and younger. Call 937-767-5501 or visit www.cliftonmill.com.

4) Woodland Lights

Woodland Lights will have new offerings for its 29th season. When the annual holiday attraction kicks off a new season at Countryside Park, 895 Miamisburg-Centerville Road, Washington Township, on Friday, Nov. 19, for the first time, visitors can stroll through 10 acres of lights and displays or take a ride on the Rieck Express train’s new path. Woodland Lights is open through Thursday, Dec. 30. The hours are 6-9 p.m. Friday through Sunday through December 19, and nightly starting Dec. 20. Cost: $9 admission, free ages 2 and younger. Call 937-433-0130 or visit www.washingtontwp.org.

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5) “A Christmas Story: The Musical”

The 1983 film “A Christmas Story, based on the writings of Jean Shepherd, has been an annual television staple each holiday season for decades. That continued popularity led to a stage musical in 2009. “A Christmas Story: The Musical” opens at La Comedia Dinner Theatre, 765 W. Central Ave., Springboro, on Thursday, Nov. 4. Show times are between 12:30 and 12:45 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Sunday, and between 7:30 and 7:45 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Doors open two hours before show time. The buffet opens at about 11:15 a.m. for matinees and 6:15 p.m. for evening performances. Cost: $65 to $76 adults, $35 children 11 and younger. “A Christmas Story” runs through Thursday, Dec. 30. Call 1-800-677-9505 or visit lacomedia.com.

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Bobby Osborne (pictured) and his group, the Rocky Top X-press, will share the bill with Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Danny Paisley & the Southern Grass and others at the Industrial Strength Bluegrass Festival at the Roberts Convention Centre in Wilmington, Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 11 through 13. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: Photographer: Anthony Ladd

Bobby Osborne (pictured) and his group, the Rocky Top X-press, will share the bill with Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Danny Paisley & the Southern Grass and others at the Industrial Strength Bluegrass Festival at the Roberts Convention Centre in Wilmington, Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 11 through 13. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: Photographer: Anthony Ladd

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Bobby Osborne (pictured) and his group, the Rocky Top X-press, will share the bill with Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Danny Paisley & the Southern Grass and others at the Industrial Strength Bluegrass Festival at the Roberts Convention Centre in Wilmington, Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 11 through 13. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: Photographer: Anthony Ladd

Credit: Photographer: Anthony Ladd

MUSIC

1) Industrial Strength Bluegrass

The event formerly known as the Southern Ohio Indoor Music Festival will have a new name when it returns to the Roberts Convention Centre, 123 Gano Road, Wilmington, Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 11 through 13. The twice-yearly showcase for rising and established acts, hosted by Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers, has been rebranded the Industrial Strength Bluegrass Festival.

The autumn installment features Bobby Osborne & the Rocky Top X-press, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Danny Paisley & the Southern Grass, the Quebe Sisters, the Malpass Brothers and others. Doors open at 4 p.m. Thursday and 10 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Music begins at 6 p.m. Thursday and noon Friday and Saturday.

Cost: Advance tickets are $100 for three-day reserved seats, $90 for three-day general admission. Single day general admission tickets are $30 Thursday and $40 Friday and Saturday. Door tickets are $110 for three-day general admission and $80 for two-day general admission. Single day general admission tickets at the door are $35 Thursday and $45 Friday and Saturday. Call 800-965-9324 or visit www.somusicfest.com.

2) Invoke

Invoke is not your typical string quartet. That’s obvious after one listen to the ensemble’s new album, “Fantastic Planet.” University of Dayton’s ArtsLIVE season 2021-2022 presents Invoke in a Vanguard Legacy Concert in UD’s Sears Recital Hall, Jesse Philips Humanities Center, 300 College Park, Dayton, at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 7. Cost: Free for UD students, $18 general admission, $15 seniors 60 and older and UD alumni, $10 UD employees and retirees, $5 youth and students younger than 21. The next concert in the series is the Harlem Quartet with Aldo López-Gavilán on February 27. Call 937-229-2545 or visit udayton.edu.

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Mark Kosower, principal cello of the Cleveland Orchestra, joins the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra for Masterworks Series concerts at the Schuster Center in Dayton on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 12 and 13. CONTRIBUTED

Mark Kosower, principal cello of the Cleveland Orchestra, joins the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra for Masterworks Series concerts at the Schuster Center in Dayton on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 12 and 13. CONTRIBUTED

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Mark Kosower, principal cello of the Cleveland Orchestra, joins the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra for Masterworks Series concerts at the Schuster Center in Dayton on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 12 and 13. CONTRIBUTED

3) DPO & Tchaikovsky

The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra will take a hard turn from funk music with its next concert, “Tchaikovsky’s Passion.” The DPO’s 2021-2022 Masterworks Series presented by Dayton Performing Arts Alliance continues with performances at the Schuster Center, Second and Main streets, Dayton, at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Nov. 12 and 13. Guest artist Mark Kosower, principal cello of the Cleveland Orchestra, will feature on Shostakovich’s “Cello Concerto No. 1.” Cost: $14 to $68. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

4) The Brightside

Genre-defying Celtic act Scythian returns to The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton, for a Black Friday party at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 26. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for general admission tickets. VIP early access, reserved seating and meet-and-greet from 5:30-6:15 p.m. Cost: Advance tickets are $25 for general admission and $50 for VIP. Other notable November concerts at The Brightside include Austin-based Jackie Venson, making her Dayton debut at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 2. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Cost: $15 in advance, $20 day of show. Ekoostik Hookah returns to the area for an 8 p.m. show with local openers Subterranean on Friday, Nov. 19. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Cost: $12 in advance, $15 day of show. Call 937-410-0450 or visit www.thebrightsidedayton.com.

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Genre-defying Celtic act Scythian returns to The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton, for a Black Friday party at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 26. CONTRIBUTED

Genre-defying Celtic act Scythian returns to The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton, for a Black Friday party at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 26. CONTRIBUTED

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Genre-defying Celtic act Scythian returns to The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton, for a Black Friday party at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 26. CONTRIBUTED

5) Puzzle of Light

Since launching a new season in August, the Bob Ross Auto Group Jazz & Beyond Series has presented a diverse array of acts in in the Mimi and Stuart Rose Auditorium at the Dayton Art Institute, 456 Belmonte Park N., Dayton. The concert series, which runs through December, continues with hometown favorites Puzzle of Light on Thursday, Nov. 11. Music is presented from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on select Thursdays. Cost: General admission tickets are available at the museum the night of the concert for $15 adults, $10 seniors (60 and older), active military and groups of 10 or more, and $5 students 18 and older with ID and youth ages 7 to 17. DAI members and children six and younger are admitted free. Call 937-223-4ART (4278) or visit www.daytonartinstitute.org.

6) Oddbody’s

There are plenty of shows coming up in November at Oddbody’s, 5418 Burkhardt Road, Dayton. Two of the bigger ones are Michigan-based horrorcore rapper Blaze on Saturday, Nov. 6 and hard rocker Geoff Tate on Wednesday, Nov. 17. Blaze performs with Redd and Insane E on a 6:30 p.m. bill. Doors open at 6 p.m. Cost: $15 to $25. Tate, formerly of Queensryche, is celebrating the group’s early albums, “Empire” and “Rage of Order.” Cost: $35. Call 937-877-8828 or visit facebook.com/oddbodys.

7) Signs of Life

Since starting the Pink Floyd tribute Signs of Life in late 2008, Jonathan Stankorb has made a point of never playing the same show twice. That means the audience never knows what to expect beyond great music and a state-of-the-art show with video, lights, sound effects and more. Dayton Masonic Live presents Signs of Life in the Schiewetz Auditorium at Dayton Masonic Center, 525 W. Riverview Ave., Dayton, at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 19. Doors open at 7 p.m. Cost: $25 to $45. Visit daytonmasonic.live.

8) Ric Sexton

Dayton native Ric Sexton had to leave home to hone his craft. After receiving his bachelor’s degree in music media from Norfolk State University, the alto saxophonist relocated to Cincinnati. His debut album, “Fruition,” was released in July 2020. Sexton will show what he has learned in his musical travels when he returns with his group, the Red Light Special, for a hometown performance at Déjà vu Hall, 4321 Salem Ave. Dayton, at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 20. Cost: $20 to $200. Visit www.ricsexton.com.

9) Yellow Cab

El No is a new group with familiar faces that evolved out of a pandemic album recorded by longtime friends Nate Farley and Craig Nichols. The former bandmates in the Method recruited some friends for some live shows, including El No’s Dayton debut at Yellow Cab Tavern, 700 E. Fourth St., Dayton, on Saturday, Nov. 6. Oh Condor and Houseghost will also perform. Cost: $7 presale, $10 day of show. Local roots rockers the New Old-Fashioned celebrate the release of a new EP at Yellow Cab at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 12. Neo American Pioneers and Paige Beller will also perform. Cost: $10 presale, $12 day of show. Cover starts at 8 p.m. each night and music begins around 9 p.m. Visit yellowcabtavern.com.

10) Mitch Rossell

It has been five years since country singer Mitch Rossell’s last album, “Raised By the Radio.” However, there has been no shortage of singles from the Tennessee native. He has released more than a dozen digital singles in the past three years, including five new songs in 2021. The latest is “Me Being Me.” Rossell performs at JD Legends, 65 Millard Dr., Franklin, at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 12. Cost: $20 to $25. Call 937-746-4950 or visit www.jdlegends.com.

Contact this contributing writer at 937-287-6139 or e-mail at donthrasher100@gmail.com.

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