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This week in Tampa: ZZ Top, Afrojack, Il Divo, Explosions In The Sky and more




The stars of this week's concert calendar are ... the Tampa Bay Rays? Huh?

Yes, the most interesting concerts this weekend are taking place at Tropicana Field. On Friday, it's DJ/producer Afrojack, and on Sunday it's the triple bill of ZZ Top, Gretchen Wilson and 3 Doors Down. Other shows this weekend in Tampa include Il Divo, the Family Stone, Explosions In The Sky, Scotty McCreery, the Bouncing Souls, the Rocket Summer, Saving Abel, Fiesta Maxima, a huge WMNF tribute to Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys and more.

Get Carole Liparoto's preview of it all after the jump.

Il Divo
FRIDAY and SATURDAY 8 p.m. Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. $33.50-$143.50; VIP packages available at $250 and $425. (813) 229-7827.
Pop meets opera is the formula for Il Divo, the foursome with GQ looks created by Simon Cowell as the proverbial big night out. The guys are in the middle of a four-month North American tour behind their latest release, Wicked Game, that includes a pair of concerts in Tampa. Singing in English, Spanish, French and Italian, their repertoire ranges from Chris Isaak’s title song for the album to Roy Orbison’s Crying to an arrangement of Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings to Don’t Cry for Me Argentina to the inevitable Time To Say Goodbye. Il Divo, made up of American tenor David Miller, Spanish baritone Carlos Marin, Swiss tenor Urs Buhler and French tenor Sebastien Izambard, is a draw. During its 2009 tour, the group set what was then a box-office record with its sold-out show at Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg. — John Fleming

The Family Stone
SATURDAY 8 p.m. The Club at Treasure Island, 400 Treasure Island Causeway, Treasure Island. $45 and up. (727) 367-4511.
A mostly incoherent Sly Stone gave his last major performance (if you’d call it that) at Coachella in 2010. Sadly, he sounded more like American Idol’s “Pants on the Ground” guy than the incendiary funk father who once shook Woodstock and The Ed Sullivan Show. (Cocaine is a hell of a drug). But the good news is that Sly and the Family Stone original founding members Jerry Martini, Cynthia Robinson and Greg Errico are still charging hard as the first family of funk. And their performances of I Want to Take You Higher, Everyday People and Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin) should take you back to brighter days — days when this interracial, inter-gender band was breaking barriers with raw funk-pop and messages of peace, love and understanding.

FRIDAY Following Rays vs. Marlins. First pitch at 7:10 p.m. Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg. Free with game ticket.
It’s a big week in music for the Trop, and we’re not talking DJ Kitty this time around. The festivities begin Friday with Dutch superstar DJ (is there another kind?) Afrojack.  Afrojack sums up his ear-splattering electronic music blend with the term “bleepy dance-pop.” If that’s not descriptive enough, imagine the tones of an updated Emergency Broadcast System set to pulsing house grooves. The 24-year-old had international hits in Take Over Control and Give Me Everything with Pitbull and Ne-Yo. Just don’t mind the squelching. This is only a techno test. (Bonus: The first 10,000 fans through the gate get a free Joe Maddon Bobblehead.)

ZZ Top, Gretchen Wilson, 3 Doors Down
SUNDAY Following Rays vs. Marlins. First pitch at 1:40 p.m. Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg. Free with game ticket.
Calling themselves the “Gang of Outlaws,” the beardy Texas icons behind Sharp Dressed Man, the Redneck Woman and the Kryptonite rockers will bring their brand of banditry to the Trop for Father’s Day. ZZ Top has been playing and swaying since the late ’60s, decades before the current Rays lineup had even played T-ball. And the original group — guitarist Billy Gibbons, bassist Dusty Hill and drummer Frank Beard — is still intact and unshaven. Gretchen Wilson is the country music firecracker who sings shamelessly about leaving the Christmas lights up year-round and buying her lingerie Wal-Mart. Nice guys and tourmates 3 Doors Down round things out at the Trop’s inaugural three-part show. 

The Bouncing Souls
With The Menzingers, Luther
FRIDAY 7 p.m. State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $16.50-$18. (727) 895-3045. 
New Jersey’s Bouncing Souls thought they’d pass some time by playing loud, fast, three-chord party punk. That was 1987. Proudly, these road warriors are doing more of the same into the ’10s, keeping a DIY ethic and a dedication to short-burst punk. Expect oldies like Kids and Heroes, Private Radio and Ole’, as well as some new tunes off of Comet, the Souls’ new disc released just this week. 

Explosions in the Sky
With This Will Destroy You
TUESDAY 7:30 p.m. Ritz Ybor, 1503 Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $20 and up. (813) 247-2555.
Head-spinning instrumentalists and soundtrack specialists Explosions in the Sky are the biggest phenomenon in moody, instrumental indie rock since Mogwai. The Texas troupe has reached such a pinnacle, in fact, that they’re THE band to whom you compare just about every other band playing atmospheric, guitar-driven songs without a lead singer. On most recent album, Take Care, Take Care, Take Care, which layers soaring, cinematic soundscapes, classical guitar and Japanese singing bowls, Explosions in the Sky is less about big bangs than feel-good twinkles. Opening the show is This Will Destroy You, the act whose music was used to moody effect in Moneyball. Should be one of those rare evenings that says so much without saying anything at all.

Also playing

Loins Fri. With Permanent Makeup, Month Mind. 9 p.m. New World Brewery, 1313 E Eighth Ave., Ybor City. $6. (813) 248-4969.

JoDell CD release Fri. 8 p.m. Carrollwood Cultural Center, 4537 Lowell Road, Tampa. $12-$18. (813) 269-1310.

Saving Abel Fri. With Redlight King, Aranda, Fall From Grace. 6 p.m. Jannus Live, 16 Second St. N, St. Petersburg. $12 and up. (727) 565-0551. 

The Queen Extravaganza Fri. 7:30 p.m. Straz, Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N W.C. MacInnes Place, Tampa. $39.50 and up. (813) 229-7827.

The Happy Together Tour Fri. featuring The Grass Roots, The Buckinghams, The Turtles feat. Flo and Eddie, Gary Puckett and The Union Gap, Micky Dolenz. 7:30 p.m. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $42.50-$68. (727) 791-7400.

John Q Sat. 9 p.m. Dunedin Brewery, 937 Douglas Ave., Dunedin. Free. (727) 736-0606. 

Marty Balin (of Jefferson Airplane) Sat. 8 p.m. The Palladium, 253 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. $25. (727) 822-3590.

Lost In The Trees Sat. With Daytona, Philip Charos Ensemble. 8 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 17th St. N, Ybor City. $9-$12. (813) 241-8600.

Fiesta Maxima Sat. featuring Tito El Bambino, Prince Royce, Gocho, Adolescent’s Orquesta. 5 p.m. 1-800-Ask-Gary Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N., Tampa. $35 and up. (813) 740-2446.

Jon Oliva’s Pain Sat. 7:30 p.m. The Ritz, 1503 Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $25. (813) 247-2555.

Crippled Masters Sat. With Weapons of A** Destruction. 10 p.m. Emerald Bar, 550 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. Free. (727) 898-6054.

Good Vibrations: A Tribute to Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys Sat. featuring Americana Without Borders, Beginner’s Luck, Christie Lenee, Dirty Spoons and Trash Review, Florida Kilos, Acho Brother, JezGreW, Lights at Night, Lillie Shelor, Paul Wilborn and Blue Roses, The Rebekah Pulley Trio, Ricky Wilcox and the Moonsnakes, Ronny Elliott, Sandy Atkinson Band, Sara Rose Band, Scone Train, Talk To Mark, Up the Creek, Zulu Wave. 3 p.m. Skipper’s Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. $12-$15. (813) 971-0666.    

The Rocket Summer Tues. With States, The Scene Aesthetic. 6:30 p.m. State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $15-$17.  (727) 895-3045. 

Applebutter Express Tues. With Fil Pate. 7 p.m. Skipper’s Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. $7. (813) 971-0666.

Scotty McCreery Wed. 7 p.m. Dallas Bull, 3322 U.S. 301, Tampa. Free.

-- Carole Liparoto, tbt*

[Last modified: Thursday, June 14, 2012 5:43pm]


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