Sunday, September 23, 2018
Music News, Concert Reviews

Weekend concert picks: Dierks Bentley, Scorpions, Freestyle Explosion and more

LONG TAIL: THE SCORPIONS

The Scorpions’ longevity, says co-founding guitarist Rudolf Schenker, is due partly to their ability to balance their classic sound with modern trends. Back in the ’80s, "we were surfing on the highest wave in the world, and that was great," the 70-year-old guitarist said by phone recently. "But you could see in the late ’80s how this music was going away by grunge and alternative. But now, the alternative and grunge bands are having a harder time. That’s what it is. Elvis Presley went through the same thing." Founded in Germany in 1965, the Scorps have delivered gigantic global hits (Wind of Change, Rock You Like a Hurricane, No One Like You) en route to becoming one of the longest-running hard rock acts of all time. All that mileage adds up, as Tampa fans found out when the band canceled a gig last fall due to laryngitis on the part of singer Klaus Meine. But they’re back now and ready to connect with fans old and new. Queensryche opens at 8 p.m. Friday at Amalie Arena, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $45.75 and up. (813) 301-2500. amaliearena.comRead more with the Scorpions’ Rudolf Schenker.

SECRET’S OUT: POHGOH

Susie Ulrey is an open book. "Maybe to my detriment, sometimes," she said. But it served her well on Secret Club, her first album with her Tampa indie-emo band Pohgoh in 21 years. The new LP is largely about her struggle with multiple sclerosis since being diagnosed in 2001. The lyrics lay bare everything from her struggles with her body to her guilt of burdening her husband, Tampa music scene curator Keith Ulrey, with her ailment. "Writing about the experience helps me process it," she said. "And then in retrospect, I can f------ bang out a rocker, because I can say, ‘That happened, but I moved beyond it.’?" Pohgoh will celebrate the release of Secret Club with a show at
7:30 p.m. Friday at Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Ybor City. DieAlps! and Blacksmith open. $10. (813) 241-8600. Read more with Pohgoh’s Susie Ulrey.

MOUNTAIN MOVER: DIERKS BENTLEY

Good on Dierks Bentley for always bringing a killer undercard to Tampa. In the spirit of his rustic-tinged new album The Mountain, the party boy’s openers at Saturday’s 7 p.m. concert at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N, include shaggy barnburners Brothers Osborne, below left, the CMAs’ two-time vocal duo of the year; and Lanco, below right, whose Hallelujah Nights might be 2018’s best country debut. All we’re saying is if you’re tailgating, don’t show up late. $40.25 and up. (813) 740-2446. livenation.com.

BECAUSE YOU LOVE IT: FREESTYLE EXPLOSION

Did the ’80s ever end? Not for fans of the Freestyle Explosion, which is back for a 15th (!) year. The ’80s pop showcase packs in thousands of fans for a night of wall-to-wall hits from the likes of Stevie B (Because I Love You (The Postman Song)) with Lisa Lisa (Head to Toe), Taylor Dayne(Tell It to My Heart), right, Expose (Seasons Change) and Nu Shooz (I Can’t Wait). Pretty Poison, TKA with K7, George Lamonde and Company B round it out. 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Amalie Arena. $47.25 and up. (813) 301-2500. amaliearena.com.

MISS INDEPENDENT: SUNNY SWEENEY

Sunny Sweeney should’ve been a star. Her debut major-label single From a Table Away is one of the decade’s great cheated-on country songs, which makes it one of the decade’s great country songs, period. Life on a label didn’t work out, though, and now Sweeney is doing the indie thing, which might not be so bad. Her last album Trophy is a triumph of Texas twang and major-chord melody, and we now get to see her in clubs like Skipper’s Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. Ward Davis and the Hummingbirds open. 5 p.m. Sunday. $12 and up. (813) 971-0666. skipperssmokehouse.com.

CAT POWER: RAINBOW KITTEN SURPRISE

Here’s one surprising thing about Rainbow Kitten Surprise: Their sold-out show at the Orpheum just got moved to the larger Ritz Ybor, so you might now be able to snag a ticket. Here’s something else: Despite selling out venues coast to coast, the Boone, N.C., indie rockers are still so relatively unknown they don’t even have a Wikipedia page. How is a band often compared to early Kings of Leon still so under the radar? Doesn’t matter, but even if you don’t yet own their album How to: Friend, Love, Freefall, you can still get in on the ground floor before they move on to venues even bigger than the Ritz. Sun Seeker opens. 6:30 p.m. Monday. 1503 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $25 and up. (813) 390-0397. ritzybor.com.

Comments
Review: Niall Horan, Maren Morris shine in unequal spotlights at Tampa’s MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre

Review: Niall Horan, Maren Morris shine in unequal spotlights at Tampa’s MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre

It was a big ol' pop show Saturday night in Tampa, as a Grammy-winning singer behind one of the year's most unkillable singles got the whole MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre singing.Oh, and Niall Horan was there, too.The Grammy winner, ...
Updated: 8 hours ago
SoundBytes: The Midnight Hour, Dead Prez, Derez De’Shon, nothing,nowhere. and more

SoundBytes: The Midnight Hour, Dead Prez, Derez De’Shon, nothing,nowhere. and more

— Rising emo-rap artist nothing,nowhere., who opened for Fall Out Boy last fall at Amalie Arena, will headline the Orpheum on Nov. 24, alongside Wicca Phase Springs Eternal, Smrtdeath and St. Panther. Tickets are $18 and up. Click here.— ...
Published: 09/21/18
Lucero’s Ben Nichols talks about the band’s 20th anniversary, Michael Shannon’s intensity and more

Lucero’s Ben Nichols talks about the band’s 20th anniversary, Michael Shannon’s intensity and more

Ben Nichols is friendly with Michael Shannon. His brother, director Jeff Nichols, has cast Shannon in all five of his films. And the Oscar-nominated actor stars in a video — a short film, really — for Long Way Back Home, the new single by Nichols’ ro...
Published: 09/20/18
Lucero’s Ben Nichols talks Michael Shannon’s intensity, the band’s chances at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and more

Lucero’s Ben Nichols talks Michael Shannon’s intensity, the band’s chances at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and more

This is the 20th year of Lucero, the crusty, punk- and alt-country-accented Memphis rockers who've made many an enjoyable sojourn to Tampa Bay over the years. But don't go thinking it's made Ben Nichols newly nostalgic for his early work."It's funny,...
Published: 09/20/18
Rae Sremmurd to headline USF Homecoming concert at Yuengling Center in Tampa

Rae Sremmurd to headline USF Homecoming concert at Yuengling Center in Tampa

The University of South Florida's homecoming week is just around the corner, and the school has just booked a nice headliner for its annual centerpiece concert.Chart-topping hip-hop duo Rae Sremmurd will headline the annual USF Homecoming concert on ...
Published: 09/20/18
Dickey Betts in critical condition, facing brain surgery after ‘freak accident’ near Sarasota; upcoming concerts canceled

Dickey Betts in critical condition, facing brain surgery after ‘freak accident’ near Sarasota; upcoming concerts canceled

Months after returning to the stage after years of retirement, legendary Allman Brothers Band guitarist Dickey Betts is "critical but stable" after a "freak accident" at his home in Sarasota County, according to his website.The site says Betts was ou...
Published: 09/19/18
Maroon 5 to Headline Super Bowl Halftime Show

Maroon 5 to Headline Super Bowl Halftime Show

A band will once again take the stage at the Super Bowl halftime show.The pop group Maroon 5 is scheduled to headline the annual 13-minute extravaganza this February at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, according to two sources familiar with the plan...
Published: 09/19/18
Ticket window: Carol Burnett, John Mellencamp and Sarah Brightman on sale this week

Ticket window: Carol Burnett, John Mellencamp and Sarah Brightman on sale this week

Tickets for the following events go on sale this week:• Carol Burnett, 7:30 p.m. Feb. 12 at Ruth Eckerd Hall, Clearwater, $72.50-$257.50, on Sale at noon Friday at the box office, 1111 McMullen-Booth Road, or by calling (727) 791-7400.• Shawn Colvin,...
Published: 09/19/18
Country Music on the Bay festival bringing Scotty McCreery, Wynonna, Jerrod Niemann to St. Petersburg

Country Music on the Bay festival bringing Scotty McCreery, Wynonna, Jerrod Niemann to St. Petersburg

An all-new country music festival is coming to St. Petersburg.Country Music on the Bay will hit Vinoy Park on Oct. 13, with a lineup that includes American Idol alum Scotty McCreery, Jerrod Niemann (Drink to That All Night), Wynonna and the Big Noise...
Published: 09/19/18
Weekend concert picks: Niall Horan, Maren Morris, Lucero and more

Weekend concert picks: Niall Horan, Maren Morris, Lucero and more

UPWARD DIRECTION: Niall Horan, Maren MorrisHarry Styles is the biggest star, rakish as always and selling out arenas. Zayn and Liam Payne have the best pop hits (Pillowtalk, Strip That Down, Get Low). Louis Tomlinson is biding his time while anxious ...
Published: 09/19/18