Erin O'Hare



There are a number of small and do-it-yourself music labels here that do it all for the love of music. Staff photo

DIY labels are music to our ears

We talk a whole lot about people who make music in this town, and rightfully so—Charlottesville has a robust music scene. Less visible are the people who help musicians make a record of their craft and send it out into the world. There are a number of small and do-it-yourself music labels here that do […]

With just one three-seat table and 10 chairs at the bar, Atlas Coffee can accommodate more caffeine addicts when the weather’s nice—there are 31 additional spots on the patio out front. Photo by John Robinson

Small eateries are full of flavor

Yeah, yeah, you’ve heard it before: For a city its size, Charlottesville has a lot of restaurants. Like, a lot. In 2013, the Huffington Post ranked our city among the top 15 U.S. metro areas with the most eateries per capita, with 460 restaurants for 201,400 residents. With so many chow options at our fingertips, […]

Justin van der Linde (right), owner of Smoked BBQ Co. food cart and Smoked Kitchen and Tap in Crozet, says requests from customers to bring his barbecue back to the Downtown Mall solidified his decision to return. Photo by Rammelkamp Foto

Smoked food cart returns to downtown

Remember how sad you were in August, when the Smoked BBQ Co. food cart ran out of ’cue on its last day on the mall, and how you had to wait until December to eat it again, after a drive to Smoked Kitchen and Tap in Crozet? Well, you can forget all about that, because […]

WTJU’s “Jazz at 100” host Rus Perry got hooked in the ’70s when he started tracing the origins of jazz. Photo by Keith Alan Sprouse

WTJU celebrates 100 years of jazz recordings

When Rus Perry arrived at WTJU in 1972, he was really into rock ’n’ roll. But the more he hung out at the station, the more he expanded his musical horizons, playing the latest Bruce Springsteen or Elvis Costello cut next to Ornette Coleman or Blind Lemon Jefferson. “We learned from each other,” Perry recalls, […]

Mae Read’s exhibit of nudes drawn from photographs or life, “Drawings, Old and New,” is on display at the Downtown Mudhouse
through the month of March. Photo by Amy Jackson

First Fridays: March 3

First Fridays: March 3 In “Drawings, Old and New,” at the downtown Mudhouse through the month of March, Mae Read exhibits a series of nudes, mostly women, drawn either from life, or from photographs. When Read draws, she connects deeply to her subject and herself. “Spending that many hours staring at almost any person will create […]

Sugar Shack to open West Main location

Sugar Shack to open West Main location

  The heavenly scent of handcrafted donuts, fritters and cinnamon rolls will soon waft up and down West Main Street: Charlottesville is getting a Sugar Shack Donuts, directly across the street from the Uncommon Building, this summer. Sugar Shack owner and self-proclaimed “donut nostalgia nerd” Ian Kelley opened his first shop in a small building […]

English muffin pizzas started Ian Boden on his culinary path. He says he loves what he does and doesn’t “know how to do anything else.” Photo by Norm Shafer

The Shack’s chef named a James Beard semifinalist

The James Beard Foundation just released its list of 2017 Restaurant and Chef Award semifinalists, and Staunton chef Ian Boden landed one of the coveted spots. He’s in the running for Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic; winners will be announced May 1. Boden, who cooks new American cuisine inspired by rural Virginia at The Shack—named one of […]

Synth guru Travis Thatcher (right, with Dave Gibson) performs in Personal Bandana, and he also founded Frequencies, a live electronic music night at The Ante Room. His sets showcase the diversity and variety of sound that exists within the very broad genre (if you want to call it that) of electronic music. Photo by Chad VanPelt

Anything goes in the world of synth experimentation

The bleeps and bloops of modular synthesizers can be heard all over music these days, says Travis Thatcher, the technical director for the composition and computer technologies program in UVA’s music department. It’s audible in pop music, techno, house, trap, even indie rock and hip-hop, and that’s precisely what makes it interesting. Plus, he says, […]

Lowland Hum celebrates the release of the new album, Thin, at the Southern on Friday. Photo by Eric Kelley

Lowland Hum regains strength with no-frills record

While passing through southeastern Wyoming on tour, Lowland Hum’s Daniel and Lauren Goans borrowed a friend’s car to drive the short distance to Vedauwoo, a place known to the Arapaho as “Land of the Earthborn Spirit” in the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest. The Goans drove past Vedauwoo’s hoodoos and outcrops of billion-year-old Sherman granite. They […]

Arley Cakes’ heart is in the right place with these hazelnut oreos, available at Saturday’s Galentine’s Day pop-up show at Old Metropolitan Hall. Photo courtesy Arley Arrington

Valentine’s Day options abound

Whether you’re looking to toast to true love with a glass of wine, gaze into your lover’s eyes over a four-course meal or treat yourself to the best damn box of chocolates you’ll ever eat, there’s something yummy for you here in town, dear Valentine. Get your fill Start the sweet eating at the Galentine’s […]

The Bebedero will move its Veracruz, Mexico, food-focused restaurant to the Downtown Mall next month. Photo: Tom McGovern

The Bebedero is moving to the Downtown Mall

The Bebedero is on the move. The Mexican restaurant that’s occupied the space next to Paradox Pastry in the Glass Building on Second Street SE since last March is preparing to take over the restaurant spot most recently leased by Brookville, above The Whiskey Jar on the Downtown Mall. “It’s hard for us to leave, […]

Shawn Decker performs as Synthetic Division at the Southern on Friday to celebrate the release of his new record, The Love of Your Life. Photo by Tristan Williams

Synthetic Division honors the good fight

There was something rather poetic about Synthetic Division’s recent impromptu performance at Goth Night at The Pit at Cinema Taco on the Downtown Mall. Melancholy cabaret duo Please Don’t Tell was scheduled to perform that night, but vocalist Christina Fleming lost her voice. Shawn Decker—the musician behind Synthetic Division—stepped in with his keyboard, his synth […]

Kemi Layeni’s short film, American Beauty?, is part of the “Empowering Women of Color” exhibit on view this month at The Bridge PAI. Courtesy of the artist

First Fridays gallery listings: February 3

First Fridays: February 3 When Kemi Layeni was a child, she asked her mother to do her hair “like the fishies,” to fit her thick, kinky hair into a sleek ponytail. “I so desperately wanted to be anyone but me,” Layeni says, “whether that meant trading in my kinks for blonde hair, changing my name, Oluwakemi, […]

The modern Tex/Mex menu at Junction includes a variety of dishes such as the grilled shrimp and sweet potato empanadas, oven-roasted chile relleno and Texas cowgirl chili, and housemade cocktails and margaritas. Photo by Ron Paris

Junction brings modern Mexican to Belmont

When Melissa Close-Hart was in her mid 20s, she was studying to become a high school psychology teacher and worked in the kitchen at Birmingham, Alabama’s acclaimed Bottega Café to help pay for her tuition. One night, she says she perfectly plated a chicken scallopini—the positions of the components, the garnish, everything—and it hit her. […]

The strong harmonies and indie-folk songwriting lean darkly on The Hill and Wood's new record, When You Go. Photo by Ellen Picker

The Hill and Wood looks inward on When You Go

“It’s hard to talk about these songs,” says Sam Bush over a mug of cooling tea at Twisted Branch Tea Bazaar. He’s unwrapped the CD copy of The Hill and Wood’s latest record, When You Go, and crinkles the clear plastic wrapping in his hands. “There’s a lot of pressure these days for bands to…fabricate […]

Littlejohn’s New York Delicatessen outpost at Pro Re Nata Farm Brewery serves sandwich staples, such as the Chris Long sub, along with smaller snacks, burgers and fries. Rammelkamp Foto

Littlejohn’s opens a Pro Re Nata outpost

Fans of Littlejohn’s New York Delicatessen can now enjoy a Chris Long sub, Bum Steer and Five Easy Pieces at Pro Re Nata Farm Brewery on Rockfish Gap Turnpike in Crozet. The restaurant operates out of a Pro Re Nata-owned food truck on the brewery property, providing food to patrons and offering both pick-up and […]

J.R. Hadley, co-owner of Cho’s Nachos and Beer, says the restaurant employs a special distribution method to ensure each chip is covered with toppings—not a naked chip in sight. Photo by John Robinson

Cho’s Nachos has got it covered

J.R. Hadley has eaten a lot of nachos. When traveling around the country to Pittsburgh Steelers games, Hadley and his friends often ordered nachos to go along with their cold beers at various bars and restaurants. They would rank the nachos according to chip integrity, dispersion of ingredients (nobody likes a naked chip), quality of […]