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SoundCheck: Sunshine Music & Blues Festival, Jamey Johnson among top live music picks

m Sunshine Music & Blues Festival

With Tedeschi Trucks Band, Galactic, Leon Russell, Hot Tuna (acoustic), Stanley Clarke, J.J. Grey, the Ringers with Jimmy Herring, Bobby Lee Rodgers, Oli Brown

Details: Sunday at noon. Vinoy Park, St. Petersburg. $49.50-$99.50. For details, see

Derek Trucks caught the jam-rock world by surprise last week by announcing that he and fellow guitar hero Warren Haynes would be leaving the Allman Brothers Band at the end of 2014. But maybe it's not such a shock, considering his own Tedeschi Trucks Band — a project he co-founded with wife Susan Tedeschi in 2010 — keeps getting bigger and bigger. The sultry siren and guitar whiz won a Grammy in 2012 for the fiery, soul and blues music of debut LP Revelator, and "the Tedeschi Trucks Band is where my future and creative energy lies," Trucks said in a statement. Trucks and Tedeschi worked with concert promotions giant Live Nation to create this Florida mini-festival, featuring like-minded artists like jam-funk collective Galactic and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame sideman/singer/all-around mystic Leon Russell, and if all goes well, they'd like to take it national. Check it out on Sunday, and you can say you knew 'em way back when. — Jay Cridlin, Times staff writer

. Queensryche

Details: Tonight at 7:30. Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. $59-$79. (727) 791-7400.

There were a lot of hurt feeling when '80s metal outfit Queensryche gave founding member Geoff Tate the boot a couple of years ago. The odd result of the schism was two different versions of the outfit, and this particular stop finds Tate, 54, joined by bandmates from an even older project, Myth. Tate has referred to members of this lineup as his "true friends," and they'll arrive at the Cap to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Queensryche's epic prog rock opera Operation: Mindcrime, which is still considered one of the best concept albums of all time.

, Jamey Johnson

With Chris Hennessee

Details: Friday 8 p.m. Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. $29.50-$49.50. (727) 892-5767.

Country music's dirty little secret is that its sound has been split in two. There's the partying, truck-lovin' kind, perfect for bacchanals at beachside bars; and then there's the dustier, roots-based brand that works best for storytellers at dark, neighborhood dives. Jamey Johnson stands at the intersection of those worlds. Early songs like 2006's Redneck Side of Me tiptoe into country-cliche territory, but Johnson, 38, turned a corner with his 2008 LP That Lonesome Song and a masterful 2010 double LP, The Guitar Song, where he puts on the proverbial hats of Hank Cochran, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson to craft a modernized version of outlaw country that could easily drink the Luke Bryans and Dierks Bentleys of the world under the table.

The Soul Rebels

Details: Friday 9 p.m. The Ale and the Witch, 111 Second Ave. NE, St. Petersburg. Free. (727) 821-2533.

Tucked into an office and retail plaza a shell's throw from Beach Drive, the Ale and the Witch's amazing beer selection and live music agenda make it an escape for anyone who just wants to kick their feet up or let loose without judgment, and jam-scene favorites the Soul Rebels will prove why. Near legends in their hometown of New Orleans — where it's hard for brass bands to stand out in a culture saturated with them — the band comes to St. Petersburg as part of a short tour that warms them up for international dates in Haiti, Europe and Australia. Expect horn-driven originals like Rebelosis or covers of Bruno Mars, Jimi Hendrix and even Daft Punk.

, Chris Botti

Details: Saturday 7:30 p.m. Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. $69-$125. (727) 791-7400.

He has headlined the Clearwater Jazz Festival and was just at Ruth Eckerd Hall last April, so Chris Botti is a friend to the Tampa Bay area. Heck, he even stopped a 2009 show in Ohio to upgrade an elderly Clearwater fan from her seat in the balcony to the front row ("Where's that beautiful grandma from Florida? What are you doing up there?" is the quote). The multiple Grammy-winning trumpeter comes back again on Saturday, and while you can certainly hear songs like Indian Summer and When I Fall In Love in Any Elevator, USA, there isn't a reason to not make it out to the refurbished Capitol Theatre to watch the 51-year-old smoothly execute a session of melodic respiratory gymnastics.

, Chubby Checker

Details: Tuesday through Jan. 24. at 11:30 a.m. and 1 and 3:30 p.m. Stanleyville Theater at Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. Free with park admission. Toll-free 1-888-800-5447.

Chubby Checker, whether he knows it or not, has an interesting role in Tampa's African-American history. It's all thanks in part to 1950s rock 'n' roll pioneer Hank Ballard, who was visiting the once-bustling Central Avenue neighborhood of downtown Tampa when the sight of some dancing kids led him to write The Twist. In 1960, Checker — whose real name is Ernest Evans — turned the tune into a worldwide hit that can still get your grandma out of her chair in a heartbeat. The shows are part of Busch Gardens' Real Music Series.


With Youth Code, Coming

Details: Wednesday 7:30 p.m. Ritz Ybor, 1503 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $25 and up. (813) 247-2555.

When Coachella released its lineup last week, there were several bands on the bill that will also be making their way to Tampa Bay. Davey Havok and his California glam-goth quartet AFI are on that list, and fans not making a Coachella pilgrimage will get a chance to see the band in a far more intimate setting when they bring their latest LP, 2012's Burial, to Ybor City. The band's sound has grown up a lot in the 20 years since its founding, and Havok has been delving into industrial electro-pop for his Blaqk Audio side project, so it will be nice to soak it all in at this one.

Times correspondent Ray Roa can be reached at

Also playing

Smog City Tour Fri. 9:30 p.m. With 12th Planet, Protohype, Flinch, Son of Kick, Steady. Amphitheatre, 1609 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $15. (813) 873-8368.

Chris Cagle Fri. 7 p.m. Dallas Bull, 3322 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. $10-$15. (813) 987-2855.

The Cold Start Sat. 9 p.m. With Stone Clover, Circle of Two. Pegasus Lounge, 10008 N 30th St., Tampa. $5-$7. (813) 971-1679.

Geri X CD release Sat. 7:30 p.m. With Sugar Ransom, Carlisle, DieAlps!, Empire Cinema, Lush Budget. Local 662, 662 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $7.

John Swenson Sat. 6 p.m. With Michael Nichols. Hideaway Café, 1756 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $5. (727) 644-7895.

Grand Wizard Theodore Sun. 9 p.m. With DJs Charlie Chase, Lesage, Casper. Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Ybor City. $5 (free for 21 and over). (813) 241-8600.

Sunday School For Sinners Sun. 6:30 p.m. With Statue of Liberty. The Independent, 5020 N Florida Ave., Tampa, Free. (813) 341-4883.

Disciples Of Christ Sun. 8 p.m. With Sacridose, God Harvest, Crowd Bites Wolf. Epic Problem, 4215 E Columbus Drive, Tampa. $7. (813) 382-3477.

Tony Orlando Sun. 1 p.m. With the Bronx Wanderers. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $35-$75. (727) 791-7400.

This or the Apocalypse Tues. 8 p.m. With Shai Hulud, Sirens and Sailors, Agerasia, Act of Mercy. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $11-$25. (813) 248-9500 or

Mustard Plug Wed. 7 p.m. With Askultra, the Apes, Victims of Circumstance. Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Ybor City. $10-$12. (813) 241-8600.

SoundCheck: Sunshine Music & Blues Festival, Jamey Johnson among top live music picks 01/14/14 [Last modified: Tuesday, January 14, 2014 6:43pm]
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