SoundCheck | Top live music picks

Train, with singer Pat Monahan and Jimmy Stafford, will play at the Mahaffey on Friday.
Train, with singer Pat Monahan and Jimmy Stafford, will play at the Mahaffey on Friday.
Published Dec. 16, 2014

Mix 100.7 Mistletoe Show

With Train, Matt Nathanson, Mary Lambert

Details: Friday 7:30 p.m. Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. Sold out. (727) 892-5767.

Downtown St. Petersburg's beautiful Mahaffey Theater has just over 2,000 seats, and every single one has been taken for Mix 100.7's Mistletoe Show. At this point your only way in on Friday is to win a ticket on the radio, and we all know how easy that is. Everyone headed to the show has a lot to look forward to, though, since the evening will pack in some of the radio's biggest hits thanks to Mary Lambert, whose own self-depreciating single (Secrets) is just as good and catchy as that song she did for Macklemore (Same Love). Headlining the soiree are a pair of San Francisco pop acts, Train (Drops Of Jupiter; Hey, Soul Sister) and the always animated Matt Nathanson, whose songs Wedding Dress, All We Are and Modern Love ooze with all kinds of sappy, infinitely sweet lyrics and melodies that are perfect for the holidays.

Thx-Mas Holiday Party

With Underhill Family Orchestra, the Sh-Booms, Little Sheba and the Shamans

Details: Friday 9 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Ybor City. $8-$10. (813) 241-8600.

The Mobile, Ala., sextet Underhill Family Orchestra makes a sound that is the definition of hoot-and-hollerin', foot-stompin' backwoods music, and they're joined by one of the state's most bombastic soul-revival collectives, the Sh-Booms, who employ nearly a dozen members in their quest to revive the sock-hopping, harmony-soaked sounds of the '60s. Bay area garage rock 'n' rollers Little Sheba and the Shamans play support.

Operation Coexist Unplugged Holiday Showcase

With Jeremy Thomas, Will Erickson, Amber Lynn Nicol, Kristopher James, Amy Diaz

Details: Friday 6 p.m. Hideaway Café, 1756 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $15. (727) 644-7895.

Operation Coexist is a St. Pete nonprofit with the simple mission of improving the quality of life through the healing power of music. Their work sees fruition in the area's hospitals and school district music programs, and they raise money through concerts and other events. On Friday, they'll tap the local singer-songwriter well. Amy Diaz (a direct beneficiary of Coexist's outreach) will take the stage, and so will country-tinged singers Will Erickson, Amber Lynn Nicole and Jeremy Thomas. The night's highlight should come when Kristopher James takes 40 minutes to spin a collection of songs marked by simple, soaring melodies and a voice that seems to grow stronger every time it finds a microphone.

Steven Curtis Chapman

With Third Day, Brandon Heath, Jillian Edwards

Details: Saturday 7 p.m. USF Sun Dome, 4202 E Fowler Ave., Tampa. $25-$75. (813) 974-3004.

Alternate houses of worship come in all shapes and sizes, and in 2014 the unlikeliest of sanctuaries spread its wings. Usually home to USF basketball games or bigger rap and rock shows, the Sun Dome hosted its fair share of praise sessions this year, and on Saturday it closes the door on December with another. The show will lean heavily on Steven Curtis Chapman's Christmas albums, which have sold 1.5 million copies worldwide, and will even feature the 52-year-old's daughter-in-law Jillian Edwards, who'll perform alongside Brandon Heath. The Chapman clan's songs can skew to the slow side sometimes, but co-headliner Third Day will do their darndest to make sure heads don't nod off in the stands.

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Trace Adkins

Details: Sunday 7 p.m. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $50.75-$150. (727) 791-7400.

Don't fret if you like your season's greetings tossed in twang. Trace Adkins, the 52-year-old country music staple, will be in town on Sunday, and though he's better known for rowdier cuts like Honky Tonk Badonkadonk and Ladies Love Country Boys, he's toning it down just a bit for this one. A lot of his set at Ruth Eckerd will revolve around a 2013 Christmas LP, The King's Gift, where Adkins teams up with a few friends (including Kevin Costner) for his own takes on seasonal staples like O Holy Night, What Child is This and O Come, O Come Emmanuel. A press release promises a "reverent, theatrical production," so don't expect to feel like bumping boots with anyone after the show.

Eighth Annual Brokenmold Holiday Extravaganza

With FayRoy, Michael Parallax, Supros, Bellows

Details: Tuesday 7 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 N 17th St., Ybor City. $8. (813) 241-8600.

It's a good thing you've probably got Wednesday off. Brokenmold's holiday party is an early-week shindig, but the holiday will make the decision to stay up on a school night easy. Indian Rocks Beach-originating psych- and surf-rock outfit FayRoy are coming home from San Francisco for this one, and bona fide electro party guy Michael Parallax will be on hand, too. But the icing on the cake is Supros, a South Florida quartet that could very well be a household name by the end of next year. A new EP is delightfully loud and channels all the best parts of guys like John Mellencamp (Hush) and Ben Kweller (Jettison), or even bands like Delta Spirit (Orange Blossoms), and then distills them into a potent indie-pop potion that is pristinely recorded and energetically delivered live.

Contact Times correspondent Ray Roa at