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Jay Cridlin, Pop Music/Culture Critic

Jay Cridlin

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.

Phone: (727) 893-8336


Blog: Soundcheck

Twitter: @JayCridlin and @tbtsoundcheck

Instagram: @cridlin

  1. 'Hamilton' star Leslie Odom Jr. postpones Tampa concert


    Bad news, Hamilton fans: Leslie Odom Jr. is postponing his concert in Tampa.

    The Broadway actor and jazz crooner, who won a Tony for his role as Aaron Burr in the Tony-winning smash, has rescheduled his Feb. 26 concert at the Straz Center in Tampa to March 19 “due to scheduling conflicts.” Tickets to the original date will be honored on the new date, but refunds are available by calling the box office at (813) 229-7827. Click here for details....

  2. Daya, Jon Bellion lead lineup for free Jingle Ball concert outside Amalie Arena

    Music & Concerts

    Can't afford tickets to this year's Jingle Ball? Once again, 93.3-FLZ has you Christmas cheapskates covered.

    Singers Daya (the Chainsmokers' Don't Let Me Down) and Jon Bellion (Zedd's Beautiful Now) are the first two artists announced for the annual free outdoor concert before the Jingle Ball on Dec. 17 in Tampa. The performance will take place before the show on the plaza outside Amalie Arena. More acts are expected to be added soon....

    Daya at James J. Walker Park in New York, Oct. 12, 2016. Krista Schlueter/The New York Times
  3. Foals dive into Tampa, immerse the Ritz Ybor in big, brawny Britrock

    Music & Concerts

    It was around song 8, Providence, when Yannis Philippakis got the look.

    The Foals frontman started pacing the Ritz Ybor stage, looking for an exit route, weighing his options. And once he'd sized things up, he was off, hopping into the pit with his guitar, plowing purposefully through the Tampa crowd and back around to the other side of the stage.

    Philippakis was in the audience a minute, maybe 90 seconds, but that was all it took: The energy shot through the roof. That's what big-time guitar rock can do for a rowdy concert crowd. And Foals do it pretty dang well....

    Singer Yannis Philippakis dives into the audience during Foals' concert at the Ritz Ybor in Tampa on Oct. 26, 2016. [JAY CRIDLIN | Times]
  4. Music Planner: Women rule with Nicks, Raitt, Hynde; a 'Hamilton' star drops by

    Music & Concerts

    QUEENS OF ROCK: Bonnie Raitt, Stevie Nicks, Chrissie Hynde

    Three of rock's iconic women. One night. Where do you begin?

    Maybe start at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, where Bonnie Raitt, top right, performs at 8 p.m. Wednesday. The indomitable redhead with the ageless voice returns in support of her fine new album Dig in Deep, which has been getting Album of the Year buzz for next year's Grammys. There are no Something to Talk About- or I Can't Make You Love Me-sized hits on Dig in Deep, but it's still a rich and earthy portrait of her time-tested talent. The California Honeydrops will open the show. It's sold out, but you never know; call (727) 791-7400....

    Photo by Suzy Poling
  5. 2016 Ribfest lineup additions: Parmalee, Fabulous Thunderbirds and more


    We're about two and a half weeks from Ribfest in St. Petersburg, so it's a good time to catch you up on some lineup additions the festival has made over the past few weeks.

    Joining headliners Huey Lewis and the News, the Doobie Brothers and Chris Young are a handful of new acts, including country-rock acts Parmalee (above) and Clare Dunn, southern-fried rockers the Fabulous Thunderbirds, local rock favorites the Greg Billings Band and the Millennials, a new rock group featuring Robin Taylor Zander, the son of Cheap Trick singer Robin Zander....

  6. SoundBytes: The Damned, moe., Brian McKnight, John Tesh and more


    -- British punk icons the Damned are preparing to celebrate their 40th anniversary with a tour that'll hit the State Theatre on May 13 (and the House of Blues in Orlando on May 12). Tickets are $24. Click here....

    The Damned
  7. Leon Russell postpones Clearwater concert again due to health issues


    It's never a good sign when a musician has to postpone the same performance twice due to health issues.

    But that's what's happening with legendary piano man Leon Russell. The singer was set to perform at Clearwater's Capitol Theatre this summer before a heart attack forced him to postpone the gig until Nov. 17. Now the makeup date has also been postponed "while he recovers from major surgery," the venue said in a release....

  8. Flaming Lips coming to Jannus Live in St. Petersburg


    The Flaming Lips have a strange history in Tampa Bay over the past decade.

    They've played Jannus Landing/Live a couple of times to results that vary from mixed to ecstatic. They've headlined the Gasparilla Music Festival (introducing the phrase "F--- Yeah Tampa" in the process) and were set to headline a festival in St. Petersburg that later got canceled....

  9. Jerry Seinfeld coming to Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater


    Quite a week of comedy we're having in the Tampa Bay area, huh?

    First Amy Schumer performed at Amalie Arena, and you know how that went. Then Adam Sandler, David Spade and others announced a star-studded show at the Straz Center in Tampa....

  10. Jay Cridlin: Kesha has always deserved our attention, especially now

    Music & Concerts

    I was backstage at the 2009 Jingle Ball, chatting with a band in a narrow corridor at what is now Amalie Arena, when a blur of blond and black slipped between us en route from the stage to her dressing room.

    "Excuse me," Kesha said softly, so as not to interrupt.

    She was 22 then, an unknown on the rise, whose debut single Tik Tok had just cracked Billboard's Top 5. The song was insanely catchy — it would spend the first nine weeks of this decade at No. 1 — and would affix in the public's eye an image of Kesha Rose Sebert as a boy-crazy party animal who brushed her teeth with Jack Daniel's before hitting the clubs....

    In the years since hit Tik Tok, Kesha has been forced to reconstruct her broken life with a reinvented sound and some much smaller shows. She and her band the Creepies play the Ritz Ybor this week.
  11. Review: Jason Isbell, Josh Ritter showcase stellar songwriting at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater


    You don’t have to look hard to spot Bob Dylan’s influence on Jason Isbell – Dylan’s lyrics to Boots of Spanish Leather are tattooed on Isbell’s left forearm.

    But the connection between them runs deeper than Isbell’s skin.

    This was absolutely clear Wednesday at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, where 1,600 fans got a master class in songwriting courtesy of Isbell, the latest and greatest New Dylan on the block....

    Jason Isbell performed at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Oct. 19, 2016.
  12. Music Planner: Festivals take over Vinoy Park, plus Kesha, Foals, Diplo and more

    Music & Concerts

    SHE IS WHO SHE IS: Kesha

    It's been a hellish couple of years for Kesha, who has been embroiled in an ugly sexual assault lawsuit with her producer, Dr. Luke. She's locked in legal limbo with her label, which has halted the insane run of party-pop hits — Tik Tok, Die Young, Your Love Is My Drug, Blow — that kick-started her career. She says she has written dozens of new songs, but has no idea who will produce them, and how (or even if) they'll get released. In the meantime, she has hit the road with a new band, the Creepies, that infuses those old chart-toppers with a little raw, country-punk verve. It's a rebirth of sorts for the 29-year-old singer, who still could find her way back to arenas and amphitheaters someday. Until then, relish a chance to catch her at a venue as intimate at the Ritz Ybor, 1503 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. 8 p.m. Tuesday. $25 and up. (813) 247-2518. For more on Kesha's struggle and comeback, see Sunday's Latitudes section or

    Getty Images
  13. Jon Bon Jovi to perform in Tampa in support of Hillary Clinton


    South Florida isn't the only market expecting an influx of celebrities campaigning for Hillary Clinton this fall.

    Jon Bon Jovi will deliver a "Get Out the Vote" performance on Clinton's behalf on Nov. 5 in Tampa, according to our sister blog the Buzz. Details of the performance have not yet been announced....

  14. R.E.M.'s Mike Mills talks about his new classical concerto, 'Out Of Time' turning 25 and more


    When Mike Mills and celebrated violinist Robert McDuffie bring their new Concerto for Violin, Rock Band and String Orchestra to the Mahaffey Theater on Friday, you’ll only hear one song by Mills’ old band R.E.M. — a rendition of the 1992 song Nightswimming.

    But that doesn’t mean rock fans should feel like outsiders.

    “This is a fun show; it’s not a sit-on-your-hands classical concert,” the bassist said in a recent phone interview. “It’s a place where the audience can go and have a good time.”...

    Mike Mills, left, and Robert McDuffie
  15. Josh Ritter talks touring with Jason Isbell, writing for Bob Weir and more


    Josh Ritter's folksy, soulful, literate brand of alternative Americana doesn't sound like music that always has a home on country radio. But that doesn't mean it'll never happen.

    "There's a time for us where things come around, and maybe people start paying attention to the some of the stuff that has a little less shine," he said in a phone interview from his home in Brooklyn.

    Not that he's up nights waiting....