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This week’s top Tampa Bay concerts: Chris Young, Cat Power, Freestyle Explosion

Plus, Bad Religion, St. Paul and the Broken Bones, PUP and Dominic Fike.
Chris Young will play the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa on Friday. [Courtesy of John Shearer]
Chris Young will play the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa on Friday. [Courtesy of John Shearer]
Published Sep. 11


Chris Young may not be as famous as Chris Stapleton, but he’s not letting that slow him down. The 34-year-old country singer has racked up nine No. 1 country singles, including Think of You and I’m Comin’ Over, and he practically lives on the road. “We tour February to December,” Young said by phone recently. “Summer is the biggest time, when a lot of us are out there on the road doing amphitheaters and fairs and festivals, but on top of that, you get home and somebody’s like, ‘So, when do you go back out?’” Young doesn’t mind, especially since he’s itching to release his new album Raised on Country, which will feature collaborations with Kane Brown, Brad Paisley and Lauren Alaina. Until then, he’s still packing huge venues with openers Chris Janson and LoCash. 7:30 p.m. Friday. MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, Tampa. (813) 740-2446.


Despite a nearly 40-year track record of writing raging, philosophical punk songs — including this year’s fuming Age of Unreason — Greg Graffin said it’s a “misconception” to think of Bad Religion as a political band. “I think there’s a disease in this country of people who spend way too much time just getting angry about the political system,” said the singer. “That’s not to say you should be passive. But if you’re hanging out with your friends, and all you guys are doing is listening to Rush Limbaugh, there’s something wrong with you.” In other words: Get out and see a show instead of kvetching about the system on Twitter! And start with these SoCal punk legends, returning to a favorite Floridian venue next week. With Emily Davis and the Murder Police. $29.50 and up. 7 p.m. Sept. 18. Jannus Live, 200 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 565-0550.

Next week, Bad Religion will perform at St. Petersburg venue Jannus Live. [Courtesy of Alice Buxley]


There’s an earnest emo edge to PUP’s crunchy garage rock, but consensus seems to be that they should be classified as pop-punk. The Toronto group has a healthy sense of humor about them (their name is an acronym for Pathetic Use of Potential), which helps explain song titles like Bloody Mary, Kate and Ashley and My Life Is Over and I Couldn’t Be Happier. The group’s infectious energy is all over their acclaimed new album Morbid Stuff. (All you Hold Steady fans need to download Kids right this second.) When you go see them next week in Tampa, get there early to catch openers Illuminati Hotties, whose sparse Patience was one of the best indie ballads of 2018. $20 and up. 7 p.m. Tuesday. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. (813) 248-9500.

PUP will stop by the Orpheum in Tampa's Ybor City on Tuesday. [Courtesy of Vanessa Heins]


After being dubbed “intriguing” by Rolling Stone and “your next hate-listen” by Pitchfork, Naples singer-rapper Dominic Fike has caught the music world’s ear. You’ll have to decide for yourself whether his breezy, hip-pop ditties are your jam. But he’s definitely a rising star thanks to his breakthrough single 3 Nights, which has shot up the alternative charts and is up to nearly 230 million streams on Spotify. Love him or hate him, in a world where Post Malone is a star, it wouldn’t be wise to bet against him. Deb Never opens. $30-$35. 6:30 p.m. Sept. 18. Orpheum.

Dominic Fike will perform at the Orpheum in Tampa's Ybor City next week. [Courtesy of Daniel Prakopcyk]


As Hot Girl Summer gives way to Sad Girl Autumn, it’s the perfect time to revisit the sparse, aching songbook of ’90s/'00s indie heroine Cat Power. The singer born Chan Marshall has produced a handful of introspective, heartbreaking albums over the years — 1998′s Moon Pix, 2006′s The Greatest — but it wasn’t until last year when she had anything remotely close to a hit. That would be Woman, a hopeful duet with sonic descendant Lana Del Rey from last year’s lovely album Wanderer. That album followed Wish I Was Here, a 2014 duet with Coldplay, so yeah, it’s safe to say Cat Power has some famous fans. She hasn’t played Tampa Bay in a dozen years, but that’ll change this weekend. Bring tissues. Arsun opens. $31 and up. 7 p.m. Friday. Ritz Ybor, 1503 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. $27.50 and up. (813) 390-0397.

On Friday, Cat Power will take over Tampa's Ritz Ybor. [Courtesy of Eliot Lee Hazel]


It’s a shame WMNF-FM 88.5 ended its annual Tropical Heatwave festival, because the one they might have scheduled in this, their 40th year, surely would’ve been one to remember. Nevertheless, the eclectic community-supported radio station is still marking its big birthday in style, booking Birmingham, Ala., soul outfit St. Paul and the Broken Bones to headline a full anniversary concert. That’s pretty good, too, as you know if you’ve ever been lucky enough to watch the dynamic, possessed Paul Janeway sing live. Aaron Lee Tasjan opens. 8 p.m. Saturday. Coliseum, 535 Fourth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. $32 and up. (727) 892-5202.

St. Paul and the Broken Bones will perform during WMNF 88.5-FM's 40th birthday party on Saturday at the Coliseum in St. Petersburg. [Courtesy of McNair Evans]

RELATED: At 40, WMNF still stickin’ it to the man. But does it need to change?


That Stevie B’s got a juggernaut on his hands. Once again, the Because I Love You (The Postman Song) singer will bring his ’80s pop spectacular known as the Freestyle Explosion back to Tampa, with a posse of gum-snappin', scrunchie-wearin’ pals in tow. This year’s lineup includes Lisa Lisa (Head to Toe), the Original Cover Girls (Wishing On a Star), Expose (Seasons Change), Shannon (Let the Music Play), the Jets (You Got It All), Johnny O, Cynthia, Linear, Joey Restivo and Connie. 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Yuengling Center, 4202 E Fowler Ave., Tampa. $20 and up. (813) 974-3004.

On Saturday, Stevie B will appear at Tampa's Yuengling Center for the Freestyle Explosion. [PAUL SANCYA | AP]


  1. Lindsey Stirling will perform at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Dec. 20. [Cara Robbins]
    The superstar EDM-pop violinist brings her third annual holiday tour to Ruth Eckerd Hall on Dec. 20.
  2. Shakey Graves will open for the Lumineers at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa on May 22. [Six Shooter Records]
    Catch up on today’s Tampa Bay concert announcements.
  3. Thomas Rhett performs "Remember You Young" at the 53rd annual CMA Awards at Bridgestone Arena on Nov. 13 in Nashville. [MARK J. TERRILL                       |  AP]
    The country star will hit the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in June.
  4. Ronald Isley, right, and Ernie Isley of the Isley Brothers will perform at the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg on Dec. 19. [Primary Wave]
    The 78-year-old funk and R&B legend brings the Isley Brothers back to the Mahaffey Theater next week.
  5. The Trans-Siberian Orchestra will return to Amalie Arena in Tampa on Dec. 15. [Courtesy of Jason McEachern]
    The Disco Biscuits, Don McLean, Daughters and a Sha Na Na holiday reunion are also featured.
  6. Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta, shown here in the 1978 film "Grease," will make an appearance in Tampa on Dec. 14 for a film sing-along and meet and greet with fans. [AP]
    The forever Sandy Olsson and Danny Zuko will reunite for a sing-along screening on Saturday at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre.
  7. Patton Oswalt, shown in his Netflix special "Patton Oswalt: Annihilation," will perform at the Bilheimer Capitol Theatre in Clearwater on April 11, 2020. [ELIZABETH MORRIS  |  Netflix]
    Catch up on today’s Tampa Bay concert announcements.
  8. Marc Maron, show here during his Netflix special "Marc Maron: Too Real," will perform at the Straz Center in Tampa on Feb. 15, 2020. [ADAM BETTCHER  |  Netflix]
    The host of the hugely successful ‘WTF With Marc Maron’ podcast is bringing his stand-up tour to town next spring.
  9. John Prine performs at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Dec. 7, 2019. [JAY CRIDLIN  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    In a semi-hometown show in Clearwater, the songwriting legend made the whole house feel alive. | Concert review
  10. Mario Lopez tosses beads to the thousands of people lining Bayshore Boulevard in Tampa during the 2019 Gasparilla Parade of Pirates [LUIS SANTANA  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    Catch up on today’s Tampa Bay concert announcements.