By Barry Gilbert
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

April 26, 2007

8 p.m. April 28 at Wood House Concerts in Clayton. $12 donation. Limited capacity; details at

It's always a kick to see your favorite band in a club or concert hall, but it's not always easy to have a good view. So, what if you could see the band's front man, performing solo - in a friend's family room? That's what's in store for fans of Nashville's BR549 on Saturday, when singer-songwriter-guitarist Chuck Mead comes up the river and to the Woods' house in Clayton. Mead and Gary Bennett formed BR549 in 1993. The name originally was punctuated as BR5-49, after Junior Samples' phone number on the old "Hee Haw" show. That should give the uninitiated a clue to the band's roots: traditional country and rockabilly licks. Bennett has left the band, and its sound has moved more toward modern country, but the retro twang remains. Mead and company's most recent album, 2006's "Dog Days," was a fine mix of country, swing, rock, and even touches of jazz and bluegrass, applied to topics ranging from sin and redemption to the nation's treatment of American Indians.