COWBOY UP: TOBY KEITH
Like Brad Paisley and Dave Matthews, Toby Keith is a fixture at Tampa's MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, playing the shed at least 10 times since it opened in 2004. Friday makes it 11. The man who once sang he should've been a cowboy recently dropped a new single, A Few More Cowboys, that finds him back in political territory, albeit without the hawkish rage of Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American). The song's an even-handed call for civility, with Keith even touching on medical marijuana ("If they'd let us smoke what we want, we'd have a lot less cancer") and the environment ("If we did it with a handshake, we'd save a lot of paper / that'd save a lot of trees we're shipping overseas …"). Like the chorus says, the world might in fact be a better place with a few more cowboys like Keith. Eric Paslay and Waterloo Revival open at 7 p.m. 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $20 and up. (813) 740-2446. livenation.com.
PURPLE PROS: THE PURPLE XPERIENCE
Life as Prince has been busy ever since Prince died. "Sometimes I'll do Sometimes It Snows in April, and there's something about that song that really penetrates emotions," said Marshall Charloff, who portrays the late singer in the Purple Xperience, a tribute act led by Matt "Doctor" Fink, the Purple One's keyboardist in the Revolution. You might hear it at one of the Purple Xperience's two shows this week: 8 Thursday at the Tampa Theatre ($32 and up) and 8 p.m. Friday at the Coliseum in St. Petersburg ($25 and up). (A third show Saturday at Lakeland's Polk Theatre was canceled; refunds will be issued automatically.) That's a lot of Prince, but then again, Prince was a lot of Prince, too. And ever since his death in April, fans have been clamoring to hear his songs in any form. "They're trying to heal, and we're offering a little bit of healing at the same time," Charloff said. For details, see chilloungenight.com/purple-xperience.
HALL HEROES: HEART, JOAN JETT, CHEAP TRICK
It's a Hall of Fame hootenanny at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre tonight, as three iconic radio rock acts hit town: Heart, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, below, and Cheap Trick. You could program an entire Sirius channel with hits from these three bands, from Heart's Barracuda and What About Love to Jett's I Hate Myself for Loving You and Bad Reputation to Cheap Trick's Dream Police and Surrender. As a bonus, this show marks Cheap Trick's first local show since Safety Harbor resident Robin Zander's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, so swing by and tip your cap, okay? 6:30 p.m. $20 and up. (813) 740-2446. livenation.com.
MONSTER RIFFS: GOJIRA
Tampa is hallowed ground for metal bands the world over, and one of the most acclaimed is about to pay a visit. In their 20th year, fearsome French foursome Gojira remain one of heavy music's most technically innovative groups. Magma, their proggy sixth album (and first in four years), finds brothers Joe (vocals) and Mario (drums) Duplantier exploring tight new times and textures in riveting fashion, with Joe and Christian Andreu's guitars providing a bracing backdrop. Lest you get lost in all the brutality, Magma closes with the Latin-jazzy instrumental Liberation, proving Gojira don't have to get loud to get your attention. Tesseract opens at 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Ritz Ybor, 1503 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $27.50 and up. (813) 390-0397. theritzybor.com.
HOME FAVORITE: MATT HIRES
Welcome home, Matt Hires. The singer-songwriter returns from Nashville on Sunday, a few weeks before dropping his third full-length album, American Wilderness, on Oct. 14. It's packed with the heart-on-his-sleeve, Americana-tinged alt-pop that got Hires signed to a major label imprint a few years back. This album finds him forging a new path for himself, as you'll hear on the plaintively whistled track Begin Again. 7 p.m. at New World Brewery, 1313 E Eighth Ave., Ybor City. $8 and up. (813) 248-4969. newworldbrewery.net.
GET SCHOOLED: SCHOOLBOY Q, JOEY BADA$$
Drake and Kanye have come and gone, but there's still some excellent hip-hop hitting Tampa this fall, starting with Schoolboy Q, top, and Joey Bada$$ at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at Jannus Live, 200 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. Both have been hot names for the last few years, but they've upped their game in 2016. South Central's Schoolboy Q landed one of his biggest hits ever with the Kanye West-featuring That Part, and Brooklyn wunderkind Bada$$ just wrapped a role as a pal of Rami Malek's on Mr. Robot. It'll be the biggest rap show at Jannus Live until, well, the next one — Rae Sremmurd and Lil Yachty on Oct. 4. $34.50 and up. (727) 565-0550. jannuslive.com.