click to enlarge PIECES OF A DREAM @ The University of South - Florida, Jan. 16, Tampa - JOHN SECOGES
PIECES OF A DREAM @ The University of South Florida, Jan. 16, Tampa


A BENEFIT FOR THE REFUGE Long-running St. Pete ministry The Refuge is primarily known for its work with at-risk and "street" youth and the homeless, and for putting on great, all-ages, Christian-punk shows at places like Clearwater's 688 Skatepark. Bruce Wright and his group of volunteers deserve credit for just keeping their vision up and running since The Refuge lost its downtown St. Pete venue/HQ almost a decade ago — they don't get a whole lot of help, and what help they do get is appreciated. This intriguingly out-of-character show is aimed at raising some moolah to help with the operating costs, and features jam/drum circle/Celtic/World Beat ensembles The Psalters and Madison Greene, along with The Glenn Clark Family Band. The full lineup will also appear on the 14th and 15th in Ybor City, and on the 16th at St. Petersburg's Solid Rock Christian Church (4224 28th St. N.). (Royalty Theatre, Clearwater)

THE RADIATORS This veteran New Orleans band enjoyed a bit of a profile in the late '80s/early '90 as a kind of working-man's Little Feat with a heavy Crescent City bent. They've been through town countless times, and word is they always give it up on stage. (State Theatre, St. Petersburg) —Eric Snider

EMERGENZA SHOWCASE 1 Emergenza is a global original-music talent search; this is the competition's second year in the U.S. The most interesting thing about Emergenza is the fact that anybody interested in playing the first wave of showcases, held more-or-less simultaneously in dozens of markets across the world, can sign up — there's room for all. Of course, most of the bands will be eliminated after this round, and the numbers get smaller and smaller as the finals approach. Ybor's Orpheum plays host to the Tampa Bay market's initial showcases, which run every night from Thursday to Saturday. Tonight's alt-rock-heavy lineup: New Season; Smegma; Asylum 414; Trace of Day; Inviolet; Bad Cat; and Orpheus. The show kicks off at 8 p.m.; for more info, check out (Orpheum, Ybor City)


THE VITAL TOUR We were talking about The Refuge and all-ages punk/post-punk/indie-pop shows just a minute ago, and here's one now. Ocala's A Day To Remember have an energetic, harmony-laden emo sound; Orlando's Words Now Heard (basically, singer-songwriter Chris Martin) plies bouncy acoustic-grounded pop; Lakeland favorite As You Wish wax a bit more edgy and metallic; and St. Pete's own Malayne incorporate myriad melodic styles to create an urgent, timeless vibe. (688 Skatepark, Clearwater)

LUCKY PETERSON He grew up at least part of the time in St. Petersburg, the son of bluesman James Peterson. Lucky's a supremely talented fellow, with just about equal facility on B-3 organ and guitar (a rare double). He's a mercurial guy, though. I've seen him perform badly (at the Tampa Bay Blues Festival) and I've seen him perform with such reckless abandon that I couldn't take my eyes off him (at Tropical Heatwave). Last I heard, he lives in Texas. Fans can only hope that the motivated and enthusiastic Lucky shows up. (Skipper's Smokehouse, Tampa) —ES

WORK O' THE WEAVERS As you may have surmised, this Northeastern ensemble faithfully recreates the songs of iconic, masterfully subversive folk act The Weavers. (Tarpon Springs Performing Arts Center, Tarpon Springs)

EMERGENZA SHOWCASE 2 The world's largest battle o' the bands continues. Tonight's lineup consists of Desolite, Deshrived, Cuban Sandwich Crisis, Hmoong, Super Vee, Slave 2 None, Animal Stock Exchange, and Ode. (Orpheum, Ybor City)

ANNE FEENEY If there was a Bill O'Reilly pinata to be found in Bradenton this weekend, Anne Feeney might be bashing its candy-filled loins open with the backside of her acoustic guitar. Her family tree is filled with old-time labor organizers from the steel mills of Pennsylvania, and her music, which ranges from traditional Irish and Mexican ballads to R&B and ska, reflects her left-of-center pedigree. She's headlining the first-ever fundraiser for Planned Parenthood held in Bradenton, so show up, get sex-educated and support a good cause at the same time. (Fogartyville Cafe, Bradenton) —Mark Sanders


TONIC The late-'90s alt-pop hitmakers continue to coddle thirty-somethings who quit hunting down new music shortly after "If You Could Only See" attained radio ubiquity. Oddly, Tonic was nominated for two Grammys long after their heyday, for the 2003 tune "Take Me As I Am." I don't remember that one, but they have at least one truly great song — "Casual Affair." Request it. (Headliners, Tampa)

JOHNNY RAWLS The Suncoast Blues Society's Juke Joint Series continues at Dave's Aqua Lounge, a comfortable little place on the St. Pete side of Gandy Bridge that can be great fun when the right elements come together. Tonight's performer, Johnny Rawls, has been working it since the '70s. His style adds a contemporary lyrical bent to traditional, soulful old-school grooves. (Dave's Aqua Lounge, St. Petersburg)

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