John R. Miller at the Raccoon Motel -- June 20.

Tuesday, June 20, 7 p.m.

Raccoon Motel, 315 East Second Street, Davenport IA

Lauded by AllMusic as "a guitarist, singer, and songwriter whose music has the earthy twang of country, the late-night feel of blues, and the road-worn defiance of rock & roll," John R. Miller headlines a June 20 concert at Davenport's Raccoon Motel, the artist also praised by Spin magazine for how his music "reflects a refreshingly raw honesty, reflectiveness, and the undeniable beauty in discovery and growth."

Miller grew up in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia near the Potomac River. and as the artist states on his Web site, "'“Music was the first thing to turn my brain on. I'd sit by the stereo for hours with a blank audio cassette waiting to record songs I liked. I was into a lot of whatever was on the radio until I was in middle school and started finding out about punk music, which is what I gravitated toward and tried to play through high school. Not long after a short and aimless attempt at college, I was introduced to old time and traditional fiddle music, particularly around West Virginia, and my whole musical world started to open up.' Around the same time, Miller discovered John Prine and says the music of Steve Earle sent him 'down a rabbit hole.' From there he found the 1970s Texas gods like Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt, Jerry Jeff Walker, Billy Joe Shaver, and Blaze Foley, the swamp pop of Bobby Charles, and the Tulsa Sound of J.J. Cale, who is probably his biggest influence."

As continued at, "Miller toured extensively with the bands the Fox Hunt and Prison Book Club, and was a sideman with the Hackensaw Boys, William Matheny & the Strange Constellations, and Locust Honey. Life on the road, however, led Miller into heavy drinking, and in 2017 he left West Virginia to settle in Nashville and make a fresh start. Putting himself front and center, Miller developed his own project, performing his own material with a band he called the Engine Lights (car trouble is a recurring theme in his songs), and in 2018, the independent Emperor Records label issued the group's debut album The Trouble You Follow. The record earned positive reviews and helped spread the word as Miller eased back into the touring lifestyle. In early 2020, he went into the studio with a new group of accompanists to record his second album. While engineer Justin Francis was working on the set's mix, someone overheard the tracks and helped put Miller in touch with the A&R staff at the venerable roots music label Rounder Records. Rounder and Miller struck a deal, and Depreciated was released in July 2021."

John R. Miller headlines his June 20 engagement with an additional set by Todd Day Wait, admission to the 7 p.m. concert is $15, and tickets are available by visiting

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