Out and about: Ed Sheeran, Ellie Goulding, Portland Cello Project and Fiction Family are A-Team this week in Utah

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Fiction Family

spotlight show • Fiction Family is part of a Heavy and Light Tour bill that includes Christina Perri, Now, Now, Will Anderson (of Parachute), Aaron Gillespie (of The Almost), Bryce Avary (of The Rocket Summer), Anthony Raneri (of Bayside), Noah Gundersen, The Lone Bellow, Satellite and spoken-word poet Anis Mojgani. Fiction Family's most famous members are rock band Switchfoot's frontman Jon Foreman and bluegrass favorite Nickel Creek's guitarist Sean Watkins, but the rock-meets-bluegrass connection isn't as far-fetched as you might imagine. Both bands hail from the same San Diego music scene, said Watkins, 35, in a phone interview. "We come from different places musically, but we liked the same bands," Watkins said. The duo's self-titled, full-length acoustic album was released in 2009, and the side project's second album, "Fiction Family Reunion," was released Tuesday. Watkins has found success as being one of the most in-demand sidemen in music — Utah audiences saw him recently accompany his sister Sara Watkins when she headlined Park City's Eccles Center — but it's the living, breathing camaraderie of being in a group that he seeks. "Being in a band is the best," he said. "We're definitely very energetic together. We love playing with each other."

When • Friday, Feb. 1, 7 p.m.

Where • The Complex, 536 W. 100 South, Salt Lake City

Tickets • $15 at SmithsTix

Portland Cello Project

spotlight show • Last year, instead of releasing a new album, Beck released a collection of sheet music. Really. Thanks to Portland Cello Project, the music from Beck's "Song Reader" can be heard (and purchased) in its entirety by Portland Cello Project, an ensemble with a goal of showing the music world that cellos need not be relegated to the background at orchestra concerts but can be impressive sonic devices on their own — especially when performing witty, inventive tunes that cellists normally avoid. Actually, "the main goal is to confuse the audience," joked the project's general manager, artistic director and cellist Douglas Jenkins. While the six cellists and three additional musicians (including a singer) will perform some classical and jazz, the project is known for setting contemporary music to cellos. For example, the group's 2012 album, "Homage," consists of reimaginings of hip-hop pieces from the likes of OutKast and Lil Wayne, and one song is even called "Fugue on a Monstrous Theme of Kanye West." The group typically tours with rock acts such as all-star guitarist Buckethead, who would never take the KFC bucket off his head but would ask, through his tour manager, if the cellists were enjoying themselves. Yes, they were, Jenkins said. Alialujah Choir opens.

When • Friday, Feb. 1, 9 p.m.

Where • The State Room, 638 S. State St., Salt Lake City

Tickets • $17 at thestateroom.com

Ellie Goulding

spotlight show • This show was originally planned to be at a much smaller venue, but due to ticket demand, English dance-pop singer Ellie Goulding will headline Saltair. Her first album's title track, "Lights," reached No. 1 on the Billboard pop songs chart; her second album, "Halcyon," debuted in October at No. 9 on the Billboard album charts. In a phone interview, Goulding said it was listening to the radio for the first time in her small village of Lyonshall that opened the world to her. "I was in blissful ignorance," she said. "When I discovered music, it was the most musical thing in the world. I was more into it than other people around me." The singer's first music purchase was a tape by British band Blur, and now, at 26, Goulding has become more popular in the States than Blur ever was. As a result, the British press records her every move, especially her reported romance with electronic artist Skrillex. "Even when I get photographed or interviewed, I am always myself," she said. Being in the papers so much has a downside, though. "People tell me I'm way prettier in real life," Goulding said. St. Lucia opens.

When • Saturday, Feb. 2, 9 p.m.

Where • Saltair, 12408 W. Saltair Drive, Magna

Tickets • $30 at SmithsTix

Ed Sheeran

spotlight show • Consider 2013 the Year of Ed Sheeran. Perhaps you have heard the 21-year-old perform his affecting acoustic ballad "The A Team" on Salt Lake radio stations. Maybe you saw him open for Snow Patrol last year at The Depot in a star-making Utah debut. Or you could possibly recognize him as the co-author of One Direction's hit "Little Things." Well, you definitely will know Sheeran when he opens for Taylor Swift later this year. First, he will headline his own one-man show at Saltair. The show comes after we all saw Sheeran perform a cover of Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here" at the closing ceremony of the 2012 Summer Olympics in August. Elton John, Sheeran said in a phone interview, was one of his father's favorites when Sheeran grew up in the United Kingdom, but now John works as his manager, with the two talking every few days. Touring with Snow Patrol last year convinced Sheeran that appealing to "America was possible," though he admitted that he didn't expect "The A Team" (about a teenage heroin addict) "to catch on — it's much surprising." Now, it is nominated for Best Song at the 2013 Grammy Awards. By the way, watch for John and Sheeran to duet on the upcoming Grammys telecast. Remember, it's Sheeran's year.

When • Wednesday, Feb. 6, 7 p.m.

Where • Saltair, 12408 W. Saltair Drive, Magna

Tickets • $25 in advance, $27 day of, at SmithsTix, 24Tix

Judy Collins

Grammy Award-winning folk and pop artist Judy Collins will perform select songs from her catalog, which spans five decades.

When • Friday, Feb. 1, 8 p.m.

Where • Egyptian Theatre, 328 Main St., Park City

Tickets • $35-$75 at egyptiantheatrecompany.org

Slim Cessna's Auto Club

Denver-based outfit Slim Cessna's Auto Club has been crafting alternative country music since 1995.

When • Sunday, Feb. 3, 9 p.m.

Where • The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, Salt Lake City

Tickets • $12 at 24Tix.com


Alt-rockers Wovenhand are headlining a show that will include openers Light Black and Invdrs.

When • Monday, Feb. 4, 9 p.m.

Where • The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, Salt Lake City

Tickets • $10 at 24Tix.com

The Contortionist

Progressive metal band The Contortionist released the album "Intrinsic" last year. The five-piece is now touring in support of its latest full-length effort.

When • Monday, Feb. 4, 7 p.m.

Where • The Shred Shed, 60 E. Exchange Place, Salt Lake City

Tickets • $10 at SmithsTix.com


Dan Smith is the Arkansas musician behind the band Listener, but he's not a traditional frontman — because he doesn't really sing. Instead, he employs a style he describes as "talk music."

When • Tuesday, Feb. 5, 9 p.m.

Where • Mojos, 2210 Washington Blvd., Ogden

Tickets • $8 advance, $10 day of show; at SmithsTix.com


The Tennessee-based, five-piece band Glossary is touring to promote its latest album, "Long Live All of Us." Lady Murasaki will open the show.

When • Tuesday, Feb. 5, 9 p.m.

Where • Bar Deluxe, 666 S. State St., Salt Lake City

Tickets • $5 at 24Tix.com

Radio Club

Salt Lake City synth-pop bands Radio Club, Night Sweats and Jamais Vu are sharing the stage.

When • Tuesday, Feb. 5, 9 p.m.

Where • The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, Salt Lake City

Tickets • Free

Red Desert Ramblers

Utah bluegrass band Red Desert Ramblers will play a free show Thursday night.

When • Thursday, Feb. 7, 6:30 p.m.

Where • Sugarhouse BBQ, 2207 S. 700 East, Salt Lake City