Thursday, April 26, 2018
Music News, Concert Reviews

Is Bruno Mars so different from Robin Thicke?

Isn't it interesting how Robin Thicke's current nod to Marvin Gaye, the infectious Blurred Lines, is becoming a nasty litigious issue, while fellow R&B retroist Bruno Mars, for all his idea borrowing, simply wins Grammys?

The 27-year-old Mars, who plays the Tampa Bay Times Forum Wednesday, is considered a unique 21st century singer-songwriter-producer — even though half of the Honolulu native's music pays homage to the style of others. Wiggly synth cut Treasure, yet another smash from latest album Unorthodox Jukebox, is a dead ringer for circa-1982 Prince. The reggae-rock of Locked Out of Heaven was a jaw-dropping nod to the early work of Sting and the Police. Mars started out as pure pop guy (Just the Way You Are, Grenade), but he's become obsessed with his encyclopedic music smarts.

No one seems to have a problem with it. For all his myriad influences, Mars, who can dance as well as sing, is routinely compared to someone previously incomparable: the Godfather of Soul, James Brown. Whether that high praise is justified isn't the issue; no, the fact that he's even in the same breath is impressive enough. Eat your heart out, Robin Thicke.

Bruno Mars, with guests Fitz and the Tantrums, performs 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Tampa Bay Times Forum, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $37.25-$81.25.(813) 301-2500.

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Neville Brothers saxophonist Charles Neville dead at 79

Neville Brothers saxophonist Charles Neville dead at 79

NEW ORLEANS — New Orleans-born saxophone player Charles Neville has died at age 79. His career dated back to the 1950s and included gigs backing up B.B. King among others. But he was best known for three decades of performances with his siblings Aaro...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Big Boi’s concert at the Ritz Ybor in Tampa: Canceled

Big Boi’s concert at the Ritz Ybor in Tampa: Canceled

Well, this news is colder than a polar bear's toenails.Outkast rapper Big Boi has canceled his May 24 concert at the Ritz Ybor "due to unforeseen scheduling," according to a tweet from the venue. No further explanation was given, but refunds will be ...
Updated: 8 hours ago
The Royal Guardsmen talk about ‘Snoopy vs. The Red Baron,’ reuniting 50 years after their breakthrough and more

The Royal Guardsmen talk about ‘Snoopy vs. The Red Baron,’ reuniting 50 years after their breakthrough and more

It's midmorning at the pub, not far from the backyard patio where it all began, and the old guys from the old band are reminiscing on the old days over cream of mushroom soup."When we were kids," Billy Taylor said, "all you wanted was a hot shower ev...
Published: 04/26/18
Review: Foo Fighters drop an all-night rock revival on Tampa’s MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre

Review: Foo Fighters drop an all-night rock revival on Tampa’s MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre

Dave Grohl charged out like a pre-tween hopped up on Code Red, sprinting from corner to corner of the stage, all kinds of jacked up to preach the high holy gospel of RAWK."You know why I'm here? Do you know why I came here tonight?" the Foo Fighters ...
Published: 04/26/18
Royal Guardsmen return, Snoopy in tow, 50 years after Florida’s first pop hit

Royal Guardsmen return, Snoopy in tow, 50 years after Florida’s first pop hit

OCALAIt’s midmorning at the pub, not far from the backyard patio where it all began, and the old guys from the old band are reminiscing on the old days over cream of mushroom soup."When we were kids," Billy Taylor said, "all you wanted was a hot show...
Published: 04/26/18
Fleetwood Mac coming to Amalie Arena in Tampa

Fleetwood Mac coming to Amalie Arena in Tampa

Before Christine McVie and Lindsey Buckingham came to Ruth Eckerd Hall last fall, Buckingham said Fleetwood Mac was mapping out a tour for 2018 and beyond. And he fully expected to be a part of it."Fleetwood Mac is absolutely a dysfunctional family, ...
Published: 04/25/18
This week’s best concerts: Flo Rida, Queens of the Stone Age, Bay 2 Beach Festival and more

This week’s best concerts: Flo Rida, Queens of the Stone Age, Bay 2 Beach Festival and more

ROCK ROYALTY: Queens of the Stone AgeWhen Queens of the Stone Age singer Josh Homme got in trouble recently for kicking a photographer at a show, local fans might have seen it coming. During a gig here in 2014, a fan got up on stage and tried to gree...
Published: 04/25/18
Review: Yanni returns to ‘Acropolis’ for a passionate night at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater

Review: Yanni returns to ‘Acropolis’ for a passionate night at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater

I have to confess: I was not prepared to see Yanni walk on stage Tuesday night at Ruth Eckerd Hall.I mean, of course I knew he would be there. It was a Yanni concert, after all. Can't throw a Yanni concert without Yanni.But if you've seen photos of Y...
Published: 04/25/18
Hernando Symphony Orchestra ends season with ‘Kaleidoscope’ concert

Hernando Symphony Orchestra ends season with ‘Kaleidoscope’ concert

BROOKSVILLE — Some are full of bluster and bravado, while others are sentimental and romantic.And when the Hernando Symphony Orchestra closes out its season this weekend with its Kaleidoscope concert, audiences will witness the wide range of talents ...
Published: 04/24/18
SoundBytes: Tracy Morgan, Nipsey Hussle, Jimmie Vaughan and more

SoundBytes: Tracy Morgan, Nipsey Hussle, Jimmie Vaughan and more

— Tracy Morgan is coming to the Capitol Theatre in Clearwater. He'll perform there on Nov. 2. Tickets are $49.50 and up. Click here.— Former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley is returning to the Capitol Theatre on Nov. 9. Tickets are $35 and up....
Published: 04/23/18