For an instrumental musician, Glenn Jones is a damn fine songwriter. He composes indelible melodies for acoustic guitar and banjo, steeped in American folk forms—much like those written by his old friend and collaborator John Fahey. Each ringing note not only lodges his hooks deeper in your ears but also acquaints you better with the people, places, and events he means to evoke—“Heartbreak Hill,” for instance, is a memorial for a friend who ran the Boston Marathon many times before dying from cancer, and “The Great Pacific Northwest” celebrates one of his favorite parts of the country. But he’s never made music so literally close to home as his latest album, My Garden State
(Thrill Jockey), which he wrote during visits to his boyhood house to help care for his ailing mother. He’s too disciplined a composer to turn mawkish, but he’s invested these themes with extra measures of nostalgia, trepidation, and affection. Jones hasn’t played here in a year and a half, but he’ll make up for it by performing two concerts in one day—first as part of the Square Roots festival and then at Constellation. At Constellation cellist William Jason Raynovich opens with a short set that includes pieces by James Tenney, John Cage, Larry Polansky, Kaija Saariaho, and Morton Feldman (as well as one of his own). —Bill Meyer Jones also plays at the Square Roots festival. He performs on the South Stage at 3:30 PM.