Music » Livewire

Scott Miller and the Commonwealth

With Anne McCue. Thursday, May 10, at Wilbert's.


While there's no shortage of twangy, southern-fried rockers, few match Scott Miller's skillful narratives and satiric wit. With a passion for history, Miller imbues songs like the country-styled train song, "Amtrak Crescent," with a sepia-toned nostalgia, and "Say Ho," his ode to Sam Houston, with a freewheeling, bluegrass-tinged perspective that perfectly bookends Davy Crockett's famous ballad.

Last year, Miller released Citation, a terrific album with a political bent -- from "8 Miles a Gallon," a tongue-in-cheek tip of the hat to American engineering, to a scabrous cover of Neil Young's "Hawks and Doves." But the coup de grâce is "Jody," in which a soldier's friend enjoys his buddy's possessions and girlfriend while he's away: "He's eating sugar while I'm eating sand."

Although Miller definitely rattles his rock and roll bones, he's more Steve Earle/Americana and less Patterson Hood/Replacements.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.