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Review: Roger Daltrey gets loose, busts out Who rarities at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater

Roger Daltrey preformed at Clearwater's Ruth Eckerd Hall on Oct. 30, 2017.

Jay Cridlin

Roger Daltrey preformed at Clearwater's Ruth Eckerd Hall on Oct. 30, 2017.

Roger Daltrey ambled onstage wagging a fist full of lyric sheets in the air.

“Look at this lot,” the Who’s lead singer said Monday at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater. “It should’ve been bloody Shakespeare. Lyrics. Why couldn’t we write simple songs, easy ones?”

With a set like the one he played Monday, he probably wasn’t the only one who needed those sheets. Kicking off his first solo tour in three years, the 73-year-old singer dug deep into his and the Who’s catalog, dusting off several rarities for the first time in years, maybe ever.

“The idea of tonight’s show is, we’ll have a bit of the familiar and, if you don’t know what it is, a bit of the unfamiliar,” he said. “If I forget the lyrics, it’ll be extremely unfamiliar.”

At certain points, yeah, it felt like it. This was an extremely loose and occasionally slippery night, with a few opening-night hiccups and snafus that Daltrey laughed right off. But it was also a night that felt fresher and more unpredictable than the Who mega-tours of recent years, stuffed with all the hits that made them British Invasion icons. …

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SoundBytes: They Might Be Giants, Hippie Sabotage, Sabaton and more

-- Nerd-rock icons They Might Be Giants are coming to town on Jan. 27. Ticketmaster says they'll be at the State Theatre, and tickets go on sale Friday -- although the duo's own website somehow lists the address for the Ritz Ybor. Either way, clear your night for a night of fun, geeky goodness. Tickets are $26 and up. Click here.

-- Hippie Sabotage is coming to Jannus Live on March 9. Tickets go on sale Friday. Click here.

-- Metal heroes Sabaton and Kreator will be at Jannus Live on March 10. Tickets are $30 and up. Click here.

-- Busch Gardens has just unveiled the lineup for its 2018 Real Music Series, featuring free concerts several times daily in the Stanleyville Theatre: Cirque Vertigo featuring the Wallenda Duo (Jan. 8-13), Michael Cavanaugh (Jan. 15-20), the Diamonds (Jan. 22-27), Herman's Hermit's starring Peter Noone (Jan. 29-Feb. 3), Pam Tillis (Feb. 5-10), Arrival From Sweden: The Music of Abba (Feb. 12-17), the Temptations' Glenn Leonard, the Platters' Joe Coleman and the Drifters' Joe Blunt (Feb. 19-24) and the Irish dance revue Rhythm In the Night (Feb. 26-March 3). Click here.

-- U.S. Bombs is performing at Crowbar on Jan. 13. Tickets are $15 and up. Click here. …

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Kelsea Ballerini coming to Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater

Kelsea Ballerini

Sarah Barlow

Kelsea Ballerini

It's a big week for Kelsea Ballerini, with a big-city media blitz leading up to Friday's release of her much-anticipated sophomore album Unapologetically.

Now it's a big week for her fans in Tampa Bay, too.

The Grammy-nominated singer will bring her spring tour to Clearwater's Ruth Eckerd Hall on Feb. 16, with opening act Walker Hayes in tow. Tickets are $38.25, and they'll go on sale soon.

On the strength of huge hits Dibs, Peter Pan and Yeah Boy is poised to follow in the footsteps of fellow pop-country singers Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood. She was nominated for Best New Artist at last year's Grammys, and is up for Female Vocalist of the Year at this year's CMA Awards, airing Nov. 8.

Click here for details on the show.

-- Jay Cridlin

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SoundBytes: Bjork, Maren Morris, Lil Uzi Vert, H.E.R. and more

-- Road trip to Miami? Bjork is coming to Miami for what's billed as her "first-ever Florida appearance" during this year's Art Basel. We know that's not exactly true -- she played in Tampa with the Sugarcubes back in the day. But as a solo act, yeah, maybe, this could be history in the making. Either way, her DJ gig on Dec. 5 at Mana Wynwood should still be a spectacle. Tickets are $75 and up. Click here.

--Country star Maren Morris will officially open for One Direction's Niall Horan next Sept. 22 at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa. Click here.

-- Lil Uzi Vert has dropped off the bill for this year's Wild 94.1 Last Damn Show on Nov. 3 in Tampa, which is a bummer for anyone hoping to hear XO Tour Llif3 live. The good news is he and Playboi Carti are teaming up for a tour that'll hit the Orlando Amphitheater at the Central Florida Fairgrounds on Dec. 2. Tickets are $35. Click here.

-- Mysterious and highly buzzable R&B singer H.E.R. is performing at the Orpheum on Dec. 3. Tickets are $23 and up. Click here. …

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Demi Lovato, DJ Khaled coming to Amalie Arena in Tampa

Demi Lovato

Getty Images

Demi Lovato

Demi Lovato is scheduled to play six cities on this winter's iHeartMedia Jingle Ball tour, including shows immediately before and after Tampa's Jingle Ball on Dec. 16.

Hmm, we thought when we heard that news. Wonder why Lovato's not part of Tampa's Jingle Ball?

Now we know: Lovato is bringing her own headlining tour to Tampa next spring.

The belt-it-out pop singer will perform at Amalie Arena on March 31, part of a 20-city North American tour just announced Thursday. Tickets start at $29.95 and go on sale Nov. 3.

She'll be joined by another big name in the pop world: Hip-hop magnet and social media impresario DJ Khaled, whose string of recent hits includes the summer smashes I'm the One and Wild Thoughts. All he does is win, that guy.

Click here for details Demi Lovato and DJ Khaled's Tampa show.

-- Jay Cridlin

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Reggae Rise Up lineup: Rebelution, Nahko and Medicine for the People, more coming to St. Petersburg

Rebelution

Press Here Publicity

Rebelution

Reggae Rise Up just keeps getting bigger.

The reggae and reggae-rock festival in St. Petersburg's Vinoy Park will expand from two days to three in 2018, bringing an array of acts to town From March 16-18. Among them, according to an initial lineup announcement: Rebelution, Nahko and Medicine for the People and Tribal Seeds lead the first wave of acts.

Other artists coming so far: Jesse Royal, Mike Love, RDGLDGRN, Nattali Rize, New Kingston, Katastro, Iya Terra, Tropadelic, Jungle Man Sam and Summer Survivors. More will be added in the coming months.

Three-day general admission tickets are $90 at the moment, but will go up as the fest gets closer. Single-day tickets are not yet on sale. VIP tickets start at $175 for the weekend.

Click here for all the details on Reggae Rise Up 2018.

If you can't wait until then, Reggae Rise Up's organizers are plotting a two-night mini-fest at Jannus Live on Nov. 10-11, with a lineup that includes Iration, Fortunate Youth, Inner Circle and Through the Roots. Tickets to that are $25 and up, or $40 for both nights. Click here for details on that.

-- Jay Cridlin

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John Cleese talks Donald Trump, Monty Python, 'coarse comedy' and more

John Cleese

Getty Images

John Cleese

After a half-century of dead parrots, silly walks and singing lumberjacks, John Cleese knows strange when he sees it.

So, could Monty Python — the Beatles of British comedy that Cleese co-founded — dream up anything like Donald Trump's presidency?

"Oh, no, people literally would not have believed it," Cleese, 77, said by phone from England. "They would say this is going too far."

Cleese, who will be at Tampa's David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts for a Q&A and screening of Monty Python and the Holy Grail on Nov. 2, tosses barbs from a bipartisan seat in the peanut gallery, respecting Trump supporters who "didn't like Hillary Clinton, which I have to say is a reasonable point of view. I spent a lot of time trying to like her but I couldn't pull it off."

Click here for more on Cleese's appearance in Tampa. For more of Steve Persall's interview with John Cleese, click here.

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Maroon 5 coming to Amalie Arena in Tampa

Time to brush up on your Jagger-like moves.

Maroon 5 announced Thursday morning that they'll be returning to Tampa for the first time in more than three years with a concert June 16 at Amalie Arena. Tickets start at $45.75 and go on sale at 10 a.m. Nov. 4, and if this show is anything like their last local show in 2015, they will sell out. Click here for details.

The show comes in support of their forthcoming album Red Pill Blues, due Nov. 3. And while many of the album's more hip-hop-focused guest stars (Kendrick Lamar, A$AP Rocky, SZA) won't be joining them on the road, at least one will be: Julia Michaels. The breakout pop songwriter-turned-singer (Issues) will open Maroon 5's show in Tampa, so maybe she and Adam Levine will duet on new single Help Me Out. …

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Review: Against Me! kicks off friendly, familial Big Pre-Fest in Little Ybor

Against Me! performed at Big Pre-Fest in Little Ybor on Oct. 25, 2017.

Jay Cridlin

Against Me! performed at Big Pre-Fest in Little Ybor on Oct. 25, 2017.

Tacked up above Against Me!'s merch table on Wednesday at the Orpheum was a hand-scrawled plea on a sheet of rumpled cardboard: "We need weed -- or Laura will die!"

Seeing as how Laura Jane Grace was still standing at the end of Night 1 of Big Pre-Fest in Little Ybor, Against Me!'s buds in Florida must have been pretty kind.

But then, what else would you expect from what's quietly become one of the punk world's friendliest, most familial traditions?

For the fifth straight year, the two days leading up to Gainesville's Fest have brought dozens of punk and indie bands to clubs across Ybor City, a sort of ice-breaking soirée for hundreds of far-flung punks in denim vests and Fat Wreck Chords tees. It was an intimate punk love-in before the bacchanalian orgy up north, and as Gainesville's raging, righteous ambassadors to the world, Against Me! was the perfect host. …

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Carlos Santana talks transcending dark times, using music to 'validate your horniness' and more

Carlos Santana

Associated Press

Carlos Santana

For Carlos Santana, the glass of life is never just half full. It overflows, always, with hope and positivity.

When his legendary rock ensemble hits Tampa's Amalie Arena on Friday (click here for details), he will preach this gospel of positivity like the supernatural shaman of rock 'n' roll lovin' he's become.

"We play music that is extremely and supremely spiritual and sensual, and we help people, we invite people, to validate your horniness — but do it with honor and grace and respect," he said in a recent phone interview. "That is something they don't say at church on Sunday. Me being who I am, if I was a priest, a lot of people would be smiling at church, instead of feeling guilty. I would say, 'Go home and have wild sex, and do it in a spiritual way, so that when you finish, you say, "Hallelujah!" and "Thank you, God!" and 'Thank you, Jesus!' and more.' "

For more of our interview with Carlos Santana, click here.

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Steve Martin, Martin Short talk about their two-man comedy show, whether it'll ever go to Broadway and more

Steve Martin and Martin Short are getting to be old hands at this.

Over the past decade, the friends and legendary comic actors have been through Tampa Bay at least five times -- two shows together, three shows apart. And they're coming back for a third time on Jan. 19 at the Mahaffey Theater.

"I was just telling someone today: 'I want my life to be just touring around with Marty,' " Martin said. "I would be very happy for the rest of my life to do that."

"I think it's the best version of the show we've done," said Short, on the line from Los Angeles. "What people tell us about the show, which is I think something worth repeating because it's nice to hear, is that it's wall-to-wall laughs. And that's an unusual evening for two hours. So we're both awfully proud of this."

Tickets for the Jan. 19 show in St. Petersburg start at $95. There's a $300 add-on package that includes access to a pre-show reception featuring an appearance by Martin and Short, plus a post-show dinner. Click here for all the details on the show.

For more with Steve Martin and Martin Short, click here.

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Dynasty talks about her one-woman show, growing as a rapper and more

Dynasty

Joey Clay

Dynasty

Tampa hip-hop artist and actress Dynasty takes her career into a new direction Saturday at Stageworks Theatre with her first one-woman show: A Star in Life's Clothing : Life. Love. Language. Lyrics.

Not only does the New York native promise a mix of music and monologues, but she says the show provides, "A glimpse into what it's like to win, fail, love, lose and ultimately land in your own divine space."

It's a lot for one woman to deliver.

"I've grown up with this music," said Dynasty, real name Diana Hardy. "I started performing around 13 and now I am in my 30s. I have done all of these things, some more than once.

"The show touches on a few of the experiences that many may not know about me and how I got through, and continue to get through because it's not over."

Click here for details on the show. For more on Dynasty, click here for Ernest Hooper's story.

 

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Jimmy Buffett, Kenny Chesney, Toby Keith team up for hurricane relief concert in Tallahassee

Sure, Tallahassee seems like a long way to drive for a concert. But when else are you going to see Jimmy Buffett, Kenny Chesney and Toby Keith share a stage?

The trop-rock and country icons are teaming up for a hurricane relief benefit concert on Nov. 19 at Florida State University's Donald L. Tucker Civic Center. Ticket prices have not yet been set, but they'll go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday. Click here for details.

Ticket sales will benefit communities in Florida, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean affected by hurricanes Irma and Maria. Chesney, who has a home in the Virgin Islands, has already launched the Love for Love City Foundation benefitting Irma relief. And Buffett, of course, has been trying to reason with hurricane season for more than 40 years.

-- Jay Cridlin

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How Tampa high school band Channel Drive kept the music going in college

Channel Drive knew they had a shelf life.

They were a group of four high school students from Tampa, three of whom studied classical guitar. In their spare time, they formed an indie rock band that played venues like the Orpheum and Brass Mug.

But with college looming, they only had a year and half to play shows and get their music out into the world.

"Once everybody leaves, what are you going to do?" said founding drummer Alex Carr. "It was always kind of something lingering over us. We never really specifically talked about it but it was something we always knew.

"It was always the mindset of, 'Let's just see how much we can get done before that time.'"

The group will perform at the Transitions Art Gallery at the Skatepark of Tampa on Saturday. Click here for details.

For more on Channel Drive, click here for Jennifer Luo's story.

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SoundBytes: Sebastian Bach, Kristin Chenoweth, Dada Life and more

Kristin Chenoweth

New York Times

Kristin Chenoweth

-- Singer-actress Kristin Chenoweth, above, and soprano Nadine Sierra will appear as special guests alongside Andrea Bocelli at Amalie Arena on Feb. 14. Click here.

-- Skid Row frontman Sebastian Bach will swing by the State Theatre for a concert on Nov. 5. Tickets are $24. Click here.

-- Two new EDM shows coming to the Ritz Ybor: Dada Life on Jan. 27 (click here) and Lane 8 on Feb. 17 (click here).

-- Three new shows coming to the Capitol Theatre: Folk singer Tom Rush (Jan. 26, $35 and up, click here), guitar great Eric Johnson (Feb. 21, $25 and up, click here) and Southern rockers the Dixie Dregs (Feb. 28, $34.50 and up, click here).

-- Seaway is performing at Crowbar on Feb. 25. Tickets are $15 and up. Click here.

-- Jay Cridlin

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