This week in Tampa: Trey Songz, Dropkick Murphys, Fun. and more
Probably the biggest annual music event in Tampa Bay kicks off tonight, as the Strawberry Festival kicks off its star-studded country lineup with Gretchen Wilson and the Oak Ridge Boys. In the coming days, we can look forward to The Band Perry, Luke Bryan, Hank Williams Jr., Reba, Vince Gill, Jake Owen and more. For our full preview of this year's Florida Strawberry Festival, click here.
But if country music isn't your thing, there's still plenty to do this first week of March, including Trey Songz (above), Dropkick Murphys, Fun., AWOLNATION, Dark Star Orchestra, Grimes, Saliva, the Casualties, D.R.I., Unknown Hinson, Big Head Todd and the Monsters and more. Get the details after the jump, courtesy of Carole Liparoto...
TUESDAY 7:30 p.m. Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N W.C. MacInnes Place, Tampa. $48.50. (813) 229-7827.
Trey Songz makes the kind of steamy, unashamed mattress music that’s adored by ladies and feared by headboards (Neighbors Know My Name). R. Kelly-like bottle popper Say Aah and Nicki Minaj collaboration Bottoms Up are among his best-known tunes, but Songz, a.k.a. “Mr. Steal Your Girl,” is at his best when he’s moving the party from the club to the bedroom (Can’t Be Friends).
With Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls
MONDAY 7 p.m. The Ritz, 1503 Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $27.50. (813) 247-2555.
For whiskey-downing pub-rock pioneers Flogging Molly and Dropkick Murphys, the month of March is like tax season for accountants. It’s “our big time,” says Dropkick guitarist Tim Brennan. Indeed, it seems the Quincy, Mass. band’s hash of stumbling punk and fightin’ folk has become as crucial to good St. Patty’s month partying as frothy pints and Shepherd’s Pie. When platinum-selling single I’m Shipping up to Boston (the centerpiece song in Martin Scorsese’s The Departed) starts up, The Ritz is going off.
WEDNESDAY 7 p.m. State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $17-$20. (727) 895-3045.
It’s not every week that we’re treated to a show by the group with the No. 1 download in the country. Fun. currently holds that rank with We Are Young, a buoyant piano-pop sing along with the super-encouraging assertion, “We can burn brighter than the sun.” No wonder Glee was quick to scoop it up. The group, which is comprised of members of The Format, Steel Train and Anathallo, released Some Nights last week.
Dark Star Orchestra
FRIDAY 8 p.m. Jannus Live, 16 Second St. N, St. Petersburg. $22. (727) 565-0551.
Dark Star Orchestra is raising the Dead one show at a time. Each night, this free-spirited, Jerry-honoring act chooses one of the Grateful Dead’s 2,500 live sets to recreate. That means the band plays an original Dead set list, in order, song-by-song. So, you might get a September ’81 show from the Playhouse Theatre in Edinburgh, Scotland, or, say, a ’77 set from the Robertson Gym at UC Santa Barbara. Finding out is half the fun. The Dallas Morning News says it’s “the next best thing to being there.”
With Toxic Holocaust, Feral Babies, The Scurvy, Generichrist
WEDNESDAY 8 p.m. The Brass Mug, 14811 N Florida Ave., Tampa. $8-$10. twobeardspresents.com.
New location. Same old loud, grimy rock shows. The Brass Mug, a place that’s been referred to as “the CBGB of Tampa,” is settling into its new Florida Avenue location. Fittingly, The Casualties will fill the space with the kind of punk-rock anthems that are meant to be shouted, snarled or chanted — just as the Mug intended from the start.
With Born Of Gold
TUESDAY 8 p.m. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $7-$10. theorpheum.com.
If you ask us, the name Grimes sounds more suitable for a detective on a CBS crime drama, or an aspiring sludge metal act than a one-woman electronic pop project. But Grimes is in fact Claire Boucher, the delicate figure behind cyborg-y yet remarkably pretty breakout disc Visions. The floaty, synthy voyage into the unknown has been praised by The New York Times and Pitchfork, to name a few. Others have said Boucher’s work recalls the merging of the Twin Peaks and Tron soundtracks.
SUNDAY 6 p.m. State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $15. (727) 895-3045.
On separate occasions, we’ve mistaken crunch metal act Saliva for P.O.D. (Click, Click, Boom), Seether (Always) and Nickelback (Survival of the Sickest). Depending on your affinity for those bands, that could be a good or bad thing. Saliva will play the State Theatre Sunday with heavy drop D guitar tuning and a mixed bag of aggro rap-rock, grunge rock, Southern rock and metal.
With Guiltmaker, The August Name
SATURDAY 7 p.m. The Ritz Ybor, 1503 Seventh Ave., Ybor City. Free, but you need a ticket. For info, see 97xonline.com/freebieweebie2012.
Local rock station 97X is doijng their part to keep Tampa Bay a rock 'n’ roll city. The past few years, they’ve staged free “Freebie Weebie” concerts around town by national acts like Panic at the Disco, Blue October, Paper Tongues, Sick Puppies and more. In most cases, they even invite local bands to open the show. Electronic pop-metal outfit AWOLNATION, best known for last year’s oddball radio hit Sail, headlines this gig. -- Jay Cridlin, tbt*
The Black Honkeys Fri. 8 p.m. The Local 662, 662 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $5. facebook.com/thelocal662.
Chris Botti Fri. 7 p.m. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $45-$70. (727) 791-7400.
Four Star Riot Fri. 9 p.m. Dunedin Brewery, 937 Douglas Ave., Dunedin. Free. (727) 736-0606.
Unknown Hinson Fri. 8 p.m. Skipper’s Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. $15-$20. (813) 971-0666.
D.R.I. Fri. With Destined to Ruin, Ulcer, Recreant, Death by Convictions, No Offense. 8 p.m. The Brass Mug, 14811 N Florida Ave., Tampa. $10. twobeardspresents.com.
Badfish, A Tribute to Sublime Sat. 7 p.m. Jannus Live, 16 Second St. N, St. Petersburg. $15. (727) 565-0551.
The Mojo Gurus Sat. With The Lambasters, Le Teaze Burlesque Troupe. 8 p.m. Dave’s Aqua Lounge, 10820 Gandy Blvd. St. Petersburg. $10. (727) 576-1091.
Sonny LaRosa and America’s Youngest Jazz Band Sat. 7 p.m. Bayside Community Church, 3380 S.R. 580, Safety Harbor. $10. (727) 725-1788.
Buffalo Strange Sat. with Glory Road, Rob Irie and the Village Naturals. 9 p.m. Market on 7th, 1816 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $5. (813) 248-2356.
Palm Charity Music Fest Sat. featuring The Ghost Riders Legends Band (members of The Allman Brothers, The Marshall Tucker Band, The Outlaws, Ghost Riders, Pure Prairie League, Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Henry Paul Band), Sound Express, WD Han, Al Torchia and the Tattered Saints, Terry Cole and the Honkytonk Hitmen, Jimmy Sparks Band, George Marshall, Lindsay Taylor, Teak Wood. 12:30 p.m. Peggy O’Neills, 1026 Florida Ave., Palm Harbor. $20 and up. (727) 787-7734.
Young Kropes Sat. With RedStryke, Hitt Man, Junie Goons, Charisma, 5 Pound Trigger, Mathew James. 9:30 p.m. The Pegasus Lounge, 10008 N 30th St., Tampa. $5-$7. (813) 971-1679.
REO Speedwagon Sun. 4 p.m. Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. Free with park admission. Toll-free 1-888-800-5447.
Maurice Hines: Cole and Sinatra with Love Tues. 2 p.m. Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. $37.50. (727) 892-5767.
Stephen Kellogg and the Sixers Tues. With Tony Lucca, Native Run, Katrina. 7:30 p.m. Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N W.C. MacInnes Place, Tampa. $28.50. (813) 229-7827.
Everything Is Terrible! Tues. With Alien House. 8 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 17th St. N, Ybor City. $6-$9. (813) 241-8600.
Big Head Todd and the Monsters Thurs. 7 p.m. State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $20-$27. (727) 895-3045.
-- Carole Liparoto, tbt*