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SoundCheck: Crue Fest, Hot Tuna, Steve Earle, Summer Jam

Hot Tuna

With Patrick Sweany

Details: 8 p.m. Friday. Skipper's Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. $30-$35. (813) 971-0666.

Can you name "side project" bands that have outlasted their original groups? (Something tells me Foxboro Hot Tubs (Green Day) aren't going to make the cut.) Hot Tuna is one such side project formed by Jefferson Airplane guitarist Jorma Kaukonen and bassist Jack Casady. Originally called Hot S--- (RCA said no way), the blues-rock-folk group has been on and off since the early '70s performing originals and covering blues classics (Know You Rider, Hesitation Blues). Jorma and Jack return to Skipper's, this time with mandolinist Barry Mitterhoff (O Brother, Where Art Thou?) and funk drummer Skoota Warner.

Swing Dance Night at Datz

Featuring Wholly Cats

Details: 8 tonight. Datz Delicatessen, 2616 S MacDill Ave., Tampa. Free. (813) 831-7000.

Pastrami? Swing dancing? We're so there. Datz Deli in Tampa clears out the downstairs dining area so swing dancers can Lindy Hop on the hardwood for Swing Night. Versatile trio Wholly Cats performs jazz, jump blues, surf and '50s and '60s classics.

Native Music Rocks

Featuring Micki Free's American Horse Trio, Hank Nelson Jr., Levi and the Plateros, Martha Redbone, Keith Secola, Crystal Shawanda, Casper

Details: Fashion show at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Micki Free at 10 p.m. Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, 5223 Orient Road, Tampa. Free. (866) 502-7529.

American Indian artists unite to celebrate contributions to the music and fashion industry. Cherokee/Comanche Native American Micki Free and his American Horse Trio, featuring former Lenny Kravitz drummer Cindy Blackman, will perform. Free, an adept guitarist and flautist, and once a member of body-popping '80s R&B group Shalamar (Dancing in the Sheets), now focuses on Hendrix-style blues-rock. He found a place in '00s pop culture when he was featured as a member of Prince's basketball-playing entourage on Chappelle's Show.

Summer Jam 5

Featuring the Honorary Title, Cory Branan, Damion Suomi, the Beauvilles, the Sheaks, Shunda K, Guiltmaker, Da Goldminerz, the Tape Delay, Deficit, Mogul Steet Reserve, How Dare You, Larcen, Blind Man's Colour, Slim Hustle, Stereotype and the Treble Makers, GreyMarket, Alexander and the Grapes

Details: 5 p.m. Saturday. New World Brewery, 1313 E Eighth Ave., Ybor City. (813) 248-4969. And Crowbar, 1812 17th St. N, Ybor City. (813) 241-8600. $6-$15, barbecue included. The bands will be split between the two venues.

Summer Jam organizer Joe D'Acunto puts together a lineup as diverse as the music he spins locally as Tastemaker DJ Colonic (we're talking Hercules and Love Affair to Frankie Valli). Headliner the Honorary Title evokes a mix of Andrew Bird, Dashboard Confessional and Manchester Orchestra. Orlando's Damion Suomi, who had a monthlong residency this summer at L.A.'s famed singer-songwriter venue the Hotel Café, offers a sound once astutely described by a friend as "kind of like Michael Stipe and Billy Bragg having too many beers and playing Woody Guthrie songs." Charismatic rockers the Beauvilles recently won Best Music Video at the Sunscreen Film Festival (an annual event hosted by the St. Petersburg-Clearwater Film Society). Husky-toned Larcen calls to mind Atlanta rapper Gorilla Zoe with raw, but danceworthy jams. And prog-rocking technical dynamos Mogul Street Reserve balance tricky time signatures a la Rush with clean melodies like those of the Police.

WMNF Groove Fest

Featuring Shak Nasti, Cope, Earth Bombs Mars, Middle Rhythm Session, Soulshine, Burnin Smyrnans

Details: 3 p.m. Sunday. Skipper's Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. $10-$15. (813) 971-0666.

Does the word "jam band" strike fear in your heart? More often than not, the term is merely misunderstood, say the hosts of WMNF's In the Groove radio show. Celebrate the art of improvisation and genre-jumping with the experimental Middle Rhythm Session, which infuses electro and hip-hop elements into a jazz-rock blend. Funky jazz trio Shak Nasti has backed New Orleans' Bobby Lee Rodgers and Roosevelt Collier (Lee Boys). And Earth Bombs Mars, fronted by Rich Whiteley, brings early Grateful Dead-like instrumentation, psychedelia, blues and folk.

More local music every day: The SoundCheck blog rocks, with the latest news, concert reviews and profiles from the local music scene. Click on

More local music every day

The SoundCheck blog rocks, with the latest news, concert reviews and profiles from the local music scene. Click on

, Crue Fest 2

Featuring Motley Crue, Godsmack, Theory of a Deadman, Drowning Pool, Charm City Devils

Details: 5 p.m. Friday. Ford Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $10-$95. (813) 740-2446.

The riotous, self-indulgent '80s act defined by sex, drugs and Aqua Net puts on the sequel to the most successful touring rock festival of last summer (according to Rolling Stone), Crue Fest. The hair metal hellions and kings of excess (did guitarist Nikki Sixx, left, really snort fire ants?) will perform all of best-selling 1989 album Dr. Feelgood and more. Alice in Chains-honoring Godsmack, fronted by concrete vocalist Sully Erna, and Nickelback-like Theory of a Deadman are among the main stage openers.

. Steve Earle

Performing at the WMNF Peace Awards

Details: 6 p.m. Saturday. Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. (813) 238-8001. Sold out.

In the years following his outlaw country-rock hit Copperhead Road (1989), Steve Earle's songwriting took a largely political and introspective turn. On 2002's Jerusalem, Earle dealt openly with the war and the Islamic faith. John Walker's Blues, about an American fighting on the side of Taliban forces, was deemed especially controversial for its failure to condemn the soldier. Earle will perform a 30-minute set Saturday during the WMNF Peace Awards.

SoundCheck: Crue Fest, Hot Tuna, Steve Earle, Summer Jam 08/26/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 26, 2009 4:30am]
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