Make us your home page

Music Planner: Hank Williams Jr., Chris Stapleton team up; Blink-182, Maxwell bring new albums


Should Blink-182 fans be worried about the concert Saturday at Tampa's MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre?

On one hand, it's arguable there is no Blink-182 without the inimitable sneer of singer-guitarist Tom DeLonge, who left the pop-punk trio amid plenty of acrimony last year. On the other, singer-bassist Mark Hoppus and drummer Travis Barker could've done worse by replacing him with Matt Skiba, above, the respected frontman of Alkaline Trio.

It was inevitable that California, their just-released seventh album, would present a different Blink than we're used to hearing. There are still are melodic riffs and hooks aplenty; She's Out of Her Mind and Sober would be worthy additions to any Blink mix CD. But Skiba's more aggressive vocal style gives them a more grown-up sound than did DeLonge's juvenile whine — his rage is palpable on Los Angeles and Left Alone.

And it's not necessarily a problem that Hoppus' relatively sedate vocals — previously the monotonous yin to DeLonge's searing yang — occupy a greater patch of real estate. Anytime Blink veers into "serious rock" territory, it's a gamble, but it works on the understated, Hoppus-led Home Is Such a Lonely Place, one of the lovelier semisoft songs in their catalog.

Now, back to the original question: Should Blink fans be worried about Saturday's show?

Maybe cautious is a better word. As good as parts of California are, and as capable as Skiba may be, there's just no replacing the complementary back-and-forth interplay between Hoppus and DeLonge. That's the uphill climb the new Blink-182 faces for as long as it wishes to exist.

A Day to Remember and All-American Rejects open at 7 p.m. Saturday at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $25 and up. (813) 740-2446.

BOCEPHUS SPEAKS: Hank Williams Jr. and Chris Stapleton

Of course Hank Williams Jr., top right, and Chris Stapleton, bottom right, are teaming up for a tour. Both are burly, bearded country outsiders who have brought a little attitude and a whole lot of Southern fire to the Nashville establishment.

But for all their similarities, Williams doesn't seem to know that much about his tourmate.

"I don't normally know who is opening my shows until I get to the venue," he wrote in an email to the Times. "I have not worked with Chris in the past, nor do I remember ever meeting him."

Well, Bocephus, here's a 5-cent primer. Stapleton is the year's breakout country star, nearly sweeping the CMA Awards and winning the Grammy for Best Country Album for the stellar Traveller. He's crossed genres with ease, playing Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza this summer.

But Williams will still be a deserving headliner when their tour hits Tampa on Friday. The country blue blood is one of the biggest and most outspoken stars the genre has ever produced, and his new album It's About Time is a genuinely fun and rambunctious Southern rock ride.

Williams and Stapleton perform with Holly Williams, Hank's daughter, at 7:15 p.m. Friday at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $22.50 and up. (813) 740-2446.

For more with Hank Williams Jr., see


Was Maxwell's blackSUMMERS'night worth the wait? Yes, ma'am, and then some.

The silky-smooth neo-soul icon's fifth studio album, and first in seven years, dropped in July, and it's another sterling collection of futurist love songs and slow jams that never bow to convention. One minute you're swept up in a cloud of digital transcendence (All the Ways Love Can Feel), the next you're pulled into a darkened jazz dive (Lost), the next you're in the bedroom peeling off layers (Listen Hear).

Like D'Angelo's Black Messiah, blackSUMMERS'night probes the reaches of soul and R&B that might otherwise go unexplored by trend-chasing younger artists. Here, Maxwell's only muse — other than whoever he's singing to — is his own mind. That makes blackSUMMERS'night feel a bit like a Prince album, where the creator's only aim is to seduce you into seeing the world his way.

If you don't yet own blackSUMMERS'night — and want to get out ahead of all the year-end best-of lists it'll end up on — you can get it by purchasing a ticket to his concert at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. Buy your ticket at, and you'll receive a code redeemable for a copy of the album. $45 and up. Ro James opens. (727) 791-7400.


A generation of tender emo kids see David Bazan as an influence thanks to the introspective, often spiritual music he put out with his old indie rock band Pedro the Lion. He's been touring as a solo act for a decade, mixing in old Pedro the Lion favorites amid material from his solo albums. He's taken a bit of a left turn on his new album Blanco, on which he largely trades guitars for glitchy, blippy synthesizers. But his weary and soulful voice remains intact. He'll perform at 8 p.m. Saturday at Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Ybor City. Michael Nau opens. $15. (813) 241-8600.

Music Planner: Hank Williams Jr., Chris Stapleton team up; Blink-182, Maxwell bring new albums 08/03/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 3, 2016 11:26am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Gourmet food fight between top chefs raises $200,000


    ST. PETERSBURG — The chefs came armed with their secret ingredients — pork rinds, truffle butter, pork bellies.

    (From left to right) Chefs Ryan Mitchell, Michael Buttacavoli, Ted Dorsey and Matthew Brennan compete during Tampa Bay Food Fight at The Coliseum in St. Petersburg on Tuesday. The event features chefs from the Tampa Bay area and benefitted Metropolitan Ministries. EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times
  2. Channing Tatum drops out of Weinstein Co. movie about sex abuse


    LOS ANGELES — Channing Tatum is no longer developing a film with the Weinstein Co. that dealt with a boy dealing with the aftermath of sexual abuse.

    Channing Tatum at the premiere of "Comrade Detective" in Los Angeles. Tatum is no longer developing a film with the Weinstein Company about a boy dealing with the aftermath of sexual abuse. (Associated Press)
  3. Plan your weekend: Clearwater Jazz Holiday, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, MarineQuest, Florida Orchestra pops in the park, rodeo


    Plan your weekend


    Music weekend: Clearwater Jazz Holiday, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw and Bruno Mars all in one weekend? We have a playlist of a weekend coming up. Thursday brings Bruno's sold-out 24K Magic World Tour to Amalie Arena. The next day brings the country power …

    Bill Clark and Danelle Dasouqi admire the chalk art on the side walk during the final day of the three day Chalk Art Festival in Clearwater Beach. JIM REED/STAFF
  4. Ticket window: Harry Potter movie concert, Andrea Bocelli, Ed Sheeran, Iliza Shlesinger, Alan Parsons Project on sale this week

    Music & Concerts

    Tickets for the following events go on sale this week:

    British singer Ed Sheeran performs during the Italian State RAI TV program "Che Tempo che Fa", in Milan, Italy on March 12, 2017, 
AP Photo/Antonio Calanni
  5. 13 things to do in Tampa Bay on Oct. 19


    Bruno Mars: Get your Uptown Funk on at the Grammy-winning pop star's 24K Magic World Tour. 8 p.m., Amalie Arena, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $41.25-$131.25. (813) 301-2500.

    LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 25:  Bruno Mars performs onstage at 2017 BET Awards at Microsoft Theater on June 25, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for BET)