By Meghan Chomeau, Special to OnMilwaukee   Published Mar 05, 2020 at 10:02 AM

MKE Band Camp is a music series on OnMilwaukee, giving you the quick 411 on upcoming concerts in the 414.

Denver-based Nathaniel Rateliff is coming to the Riverside Theater this Thursday, March 5. Milwaukee is the second city to kick off his "And It’s Still Alright" solo tour. Doors open at 7 p.m., and the show starts at 8 p.m. with special guest Courtney Marie Andrews.

Price of admission

Tickets are dangerously close to sold out, but there are still a few ticket options left starting at $77. Click here for details.

Why you can't miss it

Divorce, alcohol and death. Singer-songwriter Nathaniel Rateliff wasn’t lacking when it came to the material for his newest album "And It’s Still Alright." It marks his first solo work since hitting it big with retro-soul group Nathaniel Rateliff & The Nightsweats’ in 2015. On the album, Rateliff ventures back to his folksy roots with confessional music that is disarmingly authentic. 

Rateliff had always planned on continuing his solo work, and the right time came when he was in the midst of a divorce. However, the death of longtime friend and producer Richard Swift made it an inseparable part of the grieving process. On his site, he shares, "Regardless of where I’m at after Richard’s death and my divorce, and getting older, I still continue to live and I still continue to find joy. I think that’s the theme of the record."

It’s a departure from the toe-tapping sound the group was known for on singles like "S.O.B." and "I Need Never Get Old." But Rateliff’s voice is the same powerhouse, and his lyrics are equally captivating. I promise the slower performance will be worth the emotional payoff. And for all you Nightsweats lovers out there, don’t worry! This is NOT the end. The band is already in talks for creating a new album. 

Song starter pack

The Hit: "S.O.B."

The breakout hit from Nathaniel Rateliff & The Nightsweats’ debut album went gold. The band’s energetic sound eases the seriousness of the lyrics, which detail Rateliff’s struggle to give up alcohol. To give you an idea of what a standout this song is, Jimmy Fallon received a phone call from Paul McCartney after the band performed it live on his show. 

B-Side Beauty: "Nothing to Show For"

"Nothing to Show For" is off Rateliff's 2013 solo LP "Falling Faster Than You Can Run." My favorite moment of the song is when he slows it down with lyrics, "We're all broke down/We're all well hid/We're all just kids/Despite our age." The timing is perfect, pulling the listener in a little closer for the second half of the song. 

Can't Wait to See it Live: "And It’s Still Alright"

Here Rateliff strikes the delicate balance of being poetic without being overly vague. In fact, he is incredibly articulate and confessional about the grief from the loss of Richard Swift. It is a heavy topic, but it leaves you with a hopeful feeling that comes from knowing "it's alright to not be alright."