CL previews upcoming shows

Lorie Line, Slayer, Blue Man Group


TAYLOR HICKS When it comes to American Idol, I'm a conscientious objector. Don't watch it. The show seems counterproductive to music as a creative endeavor. But I'll spare you a rant. One night, I very accidentally saw Taylor Hicks on Idol. I remember saying something like, "This guy's awful. A poor man's Michael McDonald." Of course, I was surprised when I heard he won the whole thing. Now, Hicks is enjoying his post-Idol spoils, but the question still lingers: Isn't one Michael McDonald enough? (Tampa Theatre, Tampa) —Eric Snider

REYNOSA W/THE BEAUVILLES /NESSIE/SPIES AND PARSONS A hot out-of-town headliner joined by quality local acts that enjoy rocking out almost as much as they love getting wasted before, during and after the gig — and maybe even creating a little controversy while they're at it. Yes, this should be a helluva night at Crowbar. Pensacola-based alt-country outfit Reynosa (see music feature) is the best thing to come out of the Panhandle since Girls Gone Wild: Best of Ultimate Spring Break. The rest of the bill constitutes some of the Bay's most accomplished — and, well, explosive — bands. What exactly will Shawn Kyle Beauville do at this show? A couple weeks ago, the front man ushered his guitarist off-stage mid-set and then proceeded to melt every face in the crowd with a rock 'n' roll exhibition to remember. Will the Beauvilles be a power trio or return to quartet status and welcome back guitarist Christopher Tolan? We'll see ... I was a fan of Nessie even before their singer gave up his day job for me (thanks, Harrell) or their bassist almost got me into two bar brawls (thanks, Joey). Spies & Parsons plays sweet power-pop kissed with a touch of twang. A highly recommended show all around. (Crowbar, Ybor City)

UMPHREY'S MCGEE Chicago's progressive jam-rock sextet offers all the trappings of a great rock show — incredible musicianship, focused jamming, unrestrained energy — without all the unnecessary cock strutting. Umphrey's plays metal music with the sort of irreverence that would make Zappa proud and without setting limits on sticking solely to heaviness; you'll just as soon find them segueing into a jazzy lounge number or a mellow reggae groove or even a bouncing bluegrass-inspired romp, without missing a beat. The cancellation of their Gainesville stop landed Umphrey's in St. Petersburg tonight; Outformation — the Southern rockin' side project of Widespread Panic guitarist/vocalist Sam Holt — opens. (State Theatre, St. Petersburg) —Leilani Polk

TORCHE The Miami-based indie rock trio does the atmospheric, angular, anguished vocals thang, and does it well. (Orpheum, Ybor)

FRIDAY, Feb. 23

LORIE LINE The instrumental pianist has been a mainstay on Billboard's New Age chart for the past decade. (Largo Cultural Center)

LIZA MINNELLI What can you say about the poor thing? She's a cartoon, so ripe for parody that parodists don't even bother anymore. Liza will deliver a set of broad show tunes and audience repartee. It might get entertaining if she starts to slip into incoherence or a meltdown. (Ruth Eckerd Hall, Clearwater) —ES

HINDER/FINGER ELEVEN/BLACK STONE CHERRY Just when you thought post-grunge had finally died, it returns with Hinder, an Oklahoma band that never got the memo that their heroes from 3 Doors Down and Nickelback are the real reason the Muslim world and most of Europe hates us. The rest of the acts on the lineup have agreed to share a stage with Hinder, making them guilty by association. (Jannus Landing, St. Petersburg)

SLAYER Calling all rivetheads: Your thrash-metal gods are playing about 90 minutes away. Plan accordingly. (House of Blues, Orlando)

SOUTHERN CULTURE ON THE SKIDS This North Carolina-based roots-rock and party band knows how to get the Skipperdome rollin'. SCOTS deftly blends silliness, adroit musicianship and a satire of redneck life into an entertaining package. (Skipper's Smokehouse, Tampa)

STEVIE B "Because I Love You (The Postman Song)" was one of the biggest, most maudlin and annoying songs of 1990. Someone reading this likely slow-danced to it at the prom. Hopefully a fond memory is attached to the tune, thanks to that feel you copped. Stevie B is the man responsible for the song. That stealth ass grab was all you, perv. (Floyd's in the Seminole Hard Rock, Tampa)


ROGER WILLIAMS This easy-listening elder (and elderly) statesman scored a No. 1 hit with "Autumn Leaves" in 1955. That's 52 years ago for those of you too lazy to do the math. Williams hasn't returned to the Billboard singles survey since 1969. Chances are, his audience doesn't mind that he has yet to get around to offering some tunes on MySpace. (Mahaffey Theater, St. Petersburg)

BLUE MAN GROUP Fans of the late, lamented Fox series Arrested Development may know Blue Man Group only from the episodes in which Tobias joined the troupe, going blue and bald in the process. But to fully appreciate these sublime, percussion-pounding goofballs, you have to see them in person, as they solemnly go about making fools of unsuspecting volunteers and vandalizing whatever space they perform in. Will they toilet-paper the entire St. Pete Times Forum as part of the How to Be a MegaStar Rock Tour? We can only hope. (St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa) —David Warner

HARRY CONNICK, JR. On the one hand, I've got to give Harry props for being such a multidimensional artist whose heart seems in the right place. On the other, his jack-of-all-trades thing leads to an inevitable end: master of none. He's a pianist, singer, composer and actor who has remained ever-loyal to his hometown of New Orleans, yet his Crescent City-themed music always sound less authentic than his Sinatra-style crooning stuff — and that includes the recently released Oh, My Nola. (Ruth Eckerd Hall, Clearwater) —ES

HIT THE LIGHTS w/ALL TIME LOW/JUST SURRENDER/VALENCIA/THE SECRET HANDSHAKE/FORGIVE DURDEN/LOVE ARCADE Hit the Lights, which hails from Lima (pronounced like the bean, not the city in Peru), Ohio, headlines this bill of up-and-coming emo acts. (Orpheum, Ybor City)

ALTAN This Ireland five-piece blends fiddles, accordion, guitar and bouzouki on traditional numbers from their homeland. (Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center)

CLEARWATER SEA-BLUES FESTIVAL FEAT. JOHNNY WINTER, COCO MONTOYA, CHRIS BEARD, ERIC SARDINAS, ERIC LINDELL AND TINSLEY ELLIS. The headliner of this bunch of blues B-listers is Johnny Winter, who used to be one of the most dangerous and revered guitarists in the world. He held his own with Jimi Hendrix, jammed with the Duane-era Allman Brothers Band and was favored by The Rolling Stones. The speed-of-sound slide work he recorded from 1969-71 stands as some of the most exciting guitar rock ever made — just check out his cover of "Johnny B. Goode" or originals like "I'm Yours and I'm Hers." Unfortunately, Winter is one of rock's saddest living casualties. He can still play, but his voice is a whisper and his loud and fast guitar days are long gone. In other words, don't go to a Winter concert expecting to hear the man who roars on Johnny Winter And Live. This two-day engagement spills into Sunday. (Coachman Park, Clearwater)

THE POSTMARKS w/POETRY N' LOTION Miami's The Postmarks are creating quite a little blog-gone-mainstream buzz since releasing their self-titled debut in January. The CD is rainy afternoon indie-pop featuring the gooey, girlish vocals of Tim Yehezkely (a woman) and arrangements that would make Brian Wilson smile. (New World Brewery, Ybor City)

THE JAZZ SINGERS FEAT. THE TIERNEY SUTTON BAND/CAROL WELSMAN With an aching and expressive voice that has won her deals to sing in a lot of films and commercials, Tierney Sutton really thrives when she sings jazz with her regular mates. Her instrument is smooth enough for torch songs and elastic enough to go along for the ride when her band stretches its legs. (Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, Sarasota) —Cooper Levey Baker

MONDAY, Feb. 26

CATIE CURTIS The Boston folkie discusses "New Flowers" and being "Wise to the Ways" on a pair of solid songs about being a mother that are posted on her website. (Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center)

BENJAMIN JAFFE The 36-year-old Preservation Hall Jazz Band bassist (and son of the venerable venue's co-founders) brings the French Quarter flavor to T-Town. (USF-Tampa College of Visual and Performing Arts Theater II)

WALTER CRAFT The Sarasota Folk Club welcomes this folk troubadour for its relaxed and cozy monthly outdoor show at the Sailing Squadron. (Sarasota Sailing Squadron, Sarasota) —CLB

TUESDAY, Feb. 27

SECRET LIVES OF THE FREEMASONS/ADAIR By-the-numbers screamo bands like this one from North Carolina with five-word names should not be allowed to exist. Sorry. Props to Adair for keeping it down to a couple of syllables. (State Theatre, St. Petersburg)

CUTE IS WHAT WE AIM FOR/ALL TIME LOW/THIS PROVIDENCE/BRIGHTON Remember what I just wrote about screamo bands with five-word names? Same goes for the headliner of this show. (Orpheum, Ybor City)


LADYSMITH BLACK MAMBAZO The gorgeous-sounding African vocal group formed in the 1970s and finally became internationally known when Paul Simon hired them for Graceland. Ladysmith's latest release features guest spots by Lilith Fair alums Emmylou Harris, Melissa Etheridge, Natalie Merchant and Sarah McLachlan. (Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center)

SCARS OF TOMORROW An Orange County-based metalcore band signed to Victory Records, Scars of Tomorrow doesn't stray much from its recipe of punishing growled verses and anthemic choruses. The band knows its audience too, making sure to book this gig at a suitably all-ages spot. Metalhead high school rejects, unite! (Sarasota YMCA, Sarasota) —CLB

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