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(ran TP edition)

TODAY

Rock Never Stops tour with Ted Nugent, Night Ranger, Quiet Riot and Slaughter (7:30 p.m., Ice Palace, $25). The Nuge has top billing on this tour, and lot of you age-challenged head bangers might be wondering why. Didn't Quiet Riot give us all a metal health checkup? Didn't Slaughter show us how to fly to the angels, and Night Ranger remind us that we can still rock in America ("Aw yeah/allrieeght!")? Get real. Sweaty Teddy is all their daddies. He was in the vanguard of the upper Midwest's psychedelic rock movement (with Detroit's Amboy Dukes) when these other guys were still figuring out their Monkees riffs. While they were sending away for their Kiss Army cards and overdosing on Frampton Comes Alive, he was swinging across the stage in a loin cloth and melting stadiumgoers' ears with his guitar. So maybe you're still weirded out about the recent VH1 Behind the Music documentary that reveals his far right wing politics. Hasn't rock always been the refuge of arch-heroes? Call Ticketmaster at (813) 287-8844.

Nas in concert, with Ja Rule, Slick Rick, Foxxy Brown (8 p.m., University of South Florida, 4202 E Fowler Ave., Sun Dome, $28.50). An East Coast all-star bill comes to the Sun Dome. Long Island rapper Nasir Jones (a.k.a. Nas) has pulled no punches in his depiction of ghetto life, but without much of the misogyny and violence that usually attend gangsta rap. Heck, he has even owned up to his admiration for Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5. Queens, New Yorker Ja Rule (a.k.a. Jeffrey Atkins) is also a member of Cash Money Click, and is exemplary of the thug rap style that has more or less supplanted gangsta style. London born, Bronx-bred Slick Rick (Ricky Walters) was released from prison last year after serving a sentence for attempted murder and is making a comeback. Call Ticketmaster at (813) 287-8844.

Florida Groove Band Summit with Chabo Brothers, Six Degrees, Beanstalk (9:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m., Fortunate One, 1902 E Eighth Ave., Ybor City, $5, 21 and over). What do they mean by "Groove Band"? Jamming, man. Lots of it. These guys spent extra time in the woodshed with their axes and want it to count for something. The Chabo Brothers reference Latin American, Spanish flamenco and American swing styles. Tallahassee's Six Degrees band is so called because each member in this sextet has a college degree. The band mixes up the polyrhythms from funk, the Caribbean, plus good old rock 'n' roll to further prove its learnedness. Tampa trio Beanstalk bends funky instrumental jam rock to its will with extreme prejudice. The band has opened for the Charlie Hunter Trio and Medeski, Martin and Wood. Call (813) 228-0302.

MONDAY

Rainbow Readers meet (7:30 p.m., The Center of Tampa, 4265 Henderson Blvd., free). The gay and lesbian book discussion group meets monthly. This month's book selection is Jane Hamilton's The Short History of a Prince: A Novel. The story explores the distance between desire and reality in the life of Walter, young man coming to grips with his sexuality, the death of his brother and his faltering ballet career. Call (813) 287-2687.

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