Residing somewhere between Emmylou Harris and Bonnie Raitt in the earth-mother universe of countrified space-blues is Tift Merritt, who makes records that effortlessly balance earth and sky. And after her decade-long sojourn in New York, it’s great to have Merritt back down here in the Triangle again in time for the release of her excellent new album “Stitch of the World” (Yep Roc Records), which is as deeply personal a record as she’s ever made. Merritt will give the new album its sendoff this weekend with shows Friday and Saturday nights at UNC-Chapel Hill’s Historic Playmakers Theatre.
- Friday also brings the Texas quartet Band of Heathens to Raleigh’s Lincoln Theatre, and bawdy comic Sarah Silverman to the Carolina Theatre in Durham.
- Mike Love’s Beach Boys play Durham Performing Arts Center on Sunday, the same night the Christian-pop “Winter Jam” comes to Raleigh’s PNC Arena.
- And the aptly named Hypnotic Brass Ensemble plays the Carolina on Tuesday.