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This week's best Tampa Bay concerts: Florida Georgia Line, Hispanic Heritage Festival, more

PARTY DOWN: Florida Georgia Line, Nelly

This was supposed to be one of the great pop-country escapes of fall 2017: a tour pairing Florida Georgia Line with Nelly for a night of hip-hop and bro-country hits, including their 2012 joint smash Cruise. And it may still be that. But the good times turned sour over the weekend when Nelly was arrested after an allegation of rape following a concert outside Tacoma, Wash. He was not charged, and has adamantly argued his innocence. At press time, Nelly was still scheduled to perform at FGL's concert at 7 p.m. Friday at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. However the case plays out, his presence might cast a cloud over what should have been a mindlessly fun night — especially considering the more mature, thoughtful themes that Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard have explored in more recent singles like H.O.L.Y., May We All and God, Your Mama, and Me. If Nelly drops off the bill, we'll let you know this week at tampabay.com/soundcheck. Otherwise, they'll be joined by Chris Lane and Morgan Wallen for the show. $49 and up. (813) 740-2446. livenation.com.

STINGING SENSATIONS: The Scorpions

It's been more than 50 years — 50! — since guitarist Rudolf Schenker founded the Scorpions in Hanover, Germany. The winds of change have seen various members come and go, and the band has embarked on at least one farewell tour since. But you just can't stop a song like Rock You Like a Hurricane. And you can't stop the Scorpions, who will bring decades of power-rock muscle to Amalie Arena at 7 p.m. Sunday. Giving this show an extra punch of metal might is the Scorpions' new man behind the skins, longtime Motorhead drummer Mikkey Dee; and openers Dave Mustaine and Megadeth, who are coming off their first-ever Grammy win for the title track to their 2016 album Dystopia. $35.50 and up. 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. (813) 301-2500. amaliearena.com.

IRON MEN: Zakk Sabbath

Most tribute acts don't play with the artist whose music they cover. But most tribute acts don't feature Zakk Wylde. The Black Label Society leader has spent years as Ozzy Osbourne's guitarist, which makes him the perfect frontman for Zakk Sabbath, a Black Sabbath cover band that hits Jannus Live at 8 p.m. Friday. Joined by Osbourne bassist Rob "Blasko" Nicholson and ex-Queens of the Stone Age drummer Joey Castillo, Wylde will rip through Sabbath classics like War Pigs and Children of the Grave. Them Evils open at 200 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. (This was originally set for the State Theatre; tickets will be honored here.) $26 and up. (727) 565-0550. jannuslive.com.

GET JUGGY WITH IT: Insane Clown Posse

Should we be at all surprised that in 2017, the group that took it upon themselves to rally a march on Washington, D.C., is Insane Clown Posse? With the success of It, clowns have never been hotter. Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope made headlines when their recent Juggalo March — intended to protest the FBI's classification of ICP's fan base as a gang — butted up against a rally of Trump supporters. It was an unlikely moment of positive press for the perpetually put-upon clowns. While it won't last forever, this might be the one time in history that buying ICP tickets feels like an act of progressive protest. So slather on some Faygo-proof face grease at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Cuban Club, 2010 Avenida Republica de Cuba, Ybor City. (This was originally set for the State Theatre; tickets will be honored here.) $25. (727) 895-3045.

GET ON YOUR FEET: Hispanic Heritage Festival

The annual Hispanic Heritage Festival usually feels like a celebration, with more than 10,000 fans packed and dancing in Coachman Park in Clearwater. But this year's event might feel a little different. It's Tampa Bay's first big festival since the Oct. 1 shooting massacre at a country festival in Las Vegas, an event that prompted renewed security concerns at outdoor events nationwide. And its top two headliners, Puerto Rican singers Farruko, top right, and Victor Manuelle, both still have the shadow of Hurricane Maria hanging over their homeland. But there's a lot of potential for healing here, as $10 from every ticket purchased online will go toward Puerto Rican hurricane relief. Jacob Forever, Nacho and Jowell y Randy also perform at noon Sunday. $25 and up. 925maxima.com.

BULL RUN: USF Homecoming

Rolling Rock and Ramen? Nah. This fall, University of South Florida students are all about Broccoli. Singer-rapper D.R.A.M., the dreadlocked space cadet behind that goofy, upbeat 2016 hit, will headline this year's USF Homecoming concert at 7 tonight at the USF Sun Dome. D.R.A.M. (bottom left), who opened for Kendrick Lamar here last month, will be joined by pop singer Kiiara (Linkin Park's Heavy) and rapper Angel Haze. The show is free for students, who may purchase a guest ticket for $10. For alumni and faculty, it's $15; for the public, it's $25. 4202 E Fowler Ave., Tampa. usf.edu/homecoming.

This week's best Tampa Bay concerts: Florida Georgia Line, Hispanic Heritage Festival, more 10/11/17 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 11, 2017 11:56am]
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