Channeling Jacko

Chris Brown recalls the King of Pop

One of the most promising young acts in pop, 18-year-old R&B star Chris Brown has drawn comparisons to Justin Timberlake, Usher and even '80s-era Michael Jackson, thanks to a string of recent hit singles ("Run It!," "Say Goodbye," "Kiss Kiss") and a galvanizing performance at last year's MTV Video Music Awards. Brown's medley on the broadcast included a rousing cover of "Billie Jean" replete with thrilling dance-floor heroics that recalled MJ's finest footwork; the performance caused serious water-cooler chatter the following day. Supporting Brown is kid rapper turned quasi-legit rapper Bow Wow; crunkers Shop Boyz ("Party Like a Rockstar"); and Soulja Boy, the hack responsible for the brain-dead hit/dance craze "Crank That."

Chris Brown w/Bow Wow/Soulja Boy/Shop Boyz/Lil Mama, 8 p.m. Mon., Jan. 14, St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa, $37-$67.

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