Thursday, December 14, 2017


Jay Cridlin, Pop Music/Culture Critic

Jay Cridlin, Pop Music/Culture Critic

Jay Cridlin is the Pop Music/Culture Critic for the Tampa Bay Times and tbt*, and the editor of Soundcheck, a blog about music and concerts in Tampa Bay. He graduated from Wake Forest University in 2002 and has been with the Times ever since. Twitter: @JayCridlin and @tbtsoundcheck

Handout photos of Katy Perry's Witness Tour, which stops at Amalie Arena in Tampa on 12/15. Credit: Rony Alwin

This week’s best Tampa Bay concerts: Katy Perry, Jingle Ball, Trans-Siberian Orchestra and more

WHERE’S THE PURPOSE? Katy PerryYou can pinpoint the exact moment when things started to unravel for Katy Perry’s Witness. It was 12:23 a.m. on Feb. 10, when she tweeted of her latest musical direction: "We gonna call this era...
Published: 12/13/17
Ashley Evans, left, and Antony Ginandjar, right, of the Squared Division, are choreographers and creative directors of Katy Perry's Witness Tour, which comes to Amalie Arena on Dec. 15. Photo by Steven Busken.

Before Tampa tour stop, Katy Perry’s creative team breaks down her Witness Tour’s ‘big, bold images’

In the ever-escalating arms race to be the most eye-popping pop star on the planet, sometimes you have to call in for backup. Even if you’re Katy Perry.When plotting her lavishly spectacular Witness Tour, which arrives in Tampa on Friday, Perry...
Published: 12/13/17
Handout photo of 98 Degrees, performing at the Mahaffey Theater on 12/8. Credit: Courtesy of 98 Degrees

This week’s best Tampa Bay concerts

Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/08/17
Clearwater YouTube star poses as Lil Pump, pranks his way into rapper's Tampa concert

Clearwater YouTube star poses as Lil Pump, pranks his way into rapper's Tampa concert

If you were standing outside the Ritz Ybor before the other night's Lil Pump concert and saw Lil Pump driving by on Seventh Avenue, bad news: You didn't really see Lil Pump.
Published: 12/05/17
Reggie Williams, a.k.a. R.Lum.R., is performing at Crowbar in Tampa on Dec. 8. Photo by Nolan Knight

Bradenton-raised R.Lum.R talks about hitting it big in indie-alternative R&B, playing Jimmy Kimmel

R.Lum.R swears he didn’t put Jimmy Kimmel up to it.When the Bradenton-raised singer-songwriter played Kimmel’s late-night show in August, the host surprised him with an unusually personal introduction."Jimmy had also worked at a radio...
Published: 12/04/17
U2 performed at Raymond James Stadium as part of The Joshua Tree Tour 2017. Catch our review this morning. [CHRIS URSO | Times]

Review: U2's 'Songs of Experience' a low point for a band capable of so much more

Songs of Innocence never got a fair shake. U2’s last album caused an uproar before you could even buy it, as the band brazenly plunked it into every Apple user’s inbox for free, without warning. Some howled outrage, others were just...
Published: 12/01/17
Sting performs at a gala benefit at Carnegie Hall in New York on Monday, Dec. 14, 2015, accompanied by the powerful Orchestra of St. Luke's, with many of his old classics arranged by conductor Rob Mathes, left. (Chris Lee/Carnegie Hall via AP)

Our music critics wonder, how will Sting mesh with the Florida Orchestra?

I was working construction the year Roxanne peaked on the Billboard charts and was playing all the time. With some of the more monotonous jobs, such as grading slabs, the radio is an important part of getting through it. I wasn’t into the...
Published: 11/30/17
NASHVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 13:  Wesley Schultz of the Lumineers performs onstage during the 2017 Americana Music Association Honors & Awards  on September 13, 2017 in Nashville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Americana Music)

This week’s best Tampa Bay concerts: 97X Next Big Thing, Charlie Daniels Band, H.E.R., more

SUPER-SIZE IT: 97X Next Big ThingPretty soon they’ll have to start calling this the Next Ginormous Thing. For its 2018 installment of the annual year-end bash known as Next Big Thing, alternative station 97X is going all-out...
Published: 11/29/17
Lady Gaga performs during the Pepsi Zero Sugar Super Bowl 51 Halftime Show at NRG Stadium on February 5, 2017 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

Lady Gaga is more than a provocateur. She's the best live performer in pop

There’s a scene in the new documentary Gaga: Five Foot Two where Lady Gaga is surrounded by her team and producers for the NFL, describing her dream Super Bowl halftime show.
Updated one month ago
Brian Setzer talks about Tom Petty, ‘The Simpsons’ and his third act with holiday music

Brian Setzer talks about Tom Petty, ‘The Simpsons’ and his third act with holiday music

Brian Setzer knows he’s overdue for a trip to Florida. For 13 years, the Grammy-winning rockabilly guitarist and big-band frontman has been packing theaters coast to coast for his annual Christmas Rocks Tour. But somehow, he keeps skipping this...
Updated one month ago