Although we’re all still processing 2020, 2022 is just around the corner. If you’re masked, boosted and looking to celebrate the new year with live music, Eugene has a lot to (safely) offer.
Up first, Eugene’s favorite yacht-rock cover band, Candy Apple Bleu, plays Sessions Music Hall at 9 pm New Year’s Eve, offering energetic soft rock and easy listening covers from the ’70s and ’80s.
Over at WOW Hall at 8 pm, Dec. 31 there’s WOW SNL NYE with local indie rockers Bluphoria, Spunj and Gentlebeing; come dressed as your favorite SNL skit and expect jokes, skits and a New Year’s countdown. There’s also the somewhat rare New Year’s Day show at the WOW when Austin-based folk-rockers who play frequently in Eugene, The Deer perform 7:30 pm Saturday, Jan. 1.
Back to New Year’s Eve, try the Whiteaker for live music at several locations. Notably, Sam Bond’s Garage is hosting Whopner County for the country-rock band’s first show in two years, alongside Wheels and Real Gone Trio, 9 pm. There’s also music at Blairally that same night, when Portland jam rock trio and local favorites The Quick and Easy Boys return to Eugene at 9 pm.
Elsewhere in the Whit, Old Nick’s hosts its New Year’s Eve Steampunk Speakeasy Party, with Seattle steampunk band Abney Park performing, supported by the electro swing band Good Co, also from Seattle. This year, the Old Nick’s party encompasses a quarter city block, with an outdoor ball drop and midnight countdown.
Back to the city core, try Michael Tracey & The Hi-Tones with special guest Skip Jones at 8 pm for high-energy, danceable blues music at Mac’s Restaurant & Nightclub in the Vet’s Club. Or for something a touch fancier, check out Ballet Fantastique: ARRIVALS: RIO with NYE After Party at 8:30 pm on New Year’s Eve — if you can’t make that, there’s another performance at 2:30 pm Jan. 2.
Music-related New Year’s festivities stretch beyond Eugene/Springfield to south Lane County, when local reggae rock band One Dollar Check performs at 8 pm at the Axe and Fiddle in Cottage Grove.
If a dance club atmosphere is more what you’re after on NYE, at 9 pm there’s GODS, GODDESSES, DEMIs and SEMIs!! hosted by Slutashia at the recently reopened Spectrum, an LGBTQIA+ bar and restaurant in downtown Eugene. Come dressed as your favorite god or goddess (demi or otherwise) from any pantheon and enjoy performances from Uranus the Fool, Bonnie Rose and Edd Zackley, while dancing to music provided by DJ Kingsley Strange.
The DJ dance music continues up the street from Spectrum at Cowfish, with DJ Law and Spoc-3PO, 8 pm. And pretty much around the corner from Spectrum and Cowfish, smoothly danceable electronic musician Cromululon performs 8 pm with support from SABOVE, Naked Civilian, K.I. Design and Tex Nasty.
Check with each venue for covers, ticket prices and COVID-19 vaccination policies. Otherwise, in the words of Taylor Swift, we hope you’re feeling (20)22, and we’ll see you in the new year.