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XOXO... 

MARK YOUR CALENDARS...

Thursday, Jan. 18: Celebrating the release of Live at KXCI (Lonesome Desert Records) Austin Counts and Tom Walbank host a party at Tap & Bottle... With a storied career that spans three decades, including two Grammy awards and three nominations, singer/pianist Diane Schuur unleashes her rich, resonant voice at The Fox Theatre. With saxophonist Ernie Watts and pianist Bill Charlap... Promising an evening of introspection and rebirth. Tall order? You decide. If proggy stoner rock does it for you, check out Baptista at The Flycatcher. With Rodeo Weekend and Gardie...

Friday, Jan. 19: Welsh pop punkers Neck Deep's latest album, The Peace And The Panic (Hopeless Records, 2017), was influenced by the sudden death of lead singer Ben Barlow's father (Terry) from a heart attack in 2016. "The best thing that I can do is to just carry on and make him proud," says Barlow. "It's emotional fuel for lyrics." After a break they are back out on the road, clocking up miles touring in support of the album. Neck Deep make a stop at The Rock. With Creeper and Speak Low If You Speak Love... Organized by Sue Mingus after her husband's death, The Mingus Dynasty are keeping composer/bassist Charles Mingus' catalog of over 300 compositions alive. With the award-winning Tucson Jazz Institute Ellington Band and special guests jazz vocalist Dennis Rowland and flutist/tenor saxophonist Lew Tabackin at The Fox Theatre... They are named after a '91 Honda Civic used to schlep an upright piano precariously piggybacked to the trunk. Led by esteemed trumpeter/pianist/composer Dante Rosano, Two-Door Hatchback is an acoustic quartet featuring a revolving cast of Tucson's finest musicians. Their sound is at once sophisticated—with elements of jazz, classical and thought-provoking lyrics as found in folk storytelling—yet whimsical. With singer-songwriter Maya Caballero. Featuring members of Calexico, Giant Sand and Orkesta Mendoza, Caballero's 2015 debut album For Sale transports the listener back in time to The Roaring '20s when the sounds of ragtime and Dixieland jazz ruled the day. At Exo Bar...

Saturday, Jan. 20: Named after corkscrew twisted bands of freshwater green algae, misspelled by a club owner. Forty-four years after their inception Spyro Gyra have become a jazz-fusion institution. Beginnings were humble—an ongoing Tuesday night jam session at a Buffalo club—yet plagued by narcissistic personality disorder. "Don't forget the interminable Dead-like solos we were taking," tells bandleader Jay Beckenstein. "We were the kings of self-indulgence. It was a shock when word of our psychosis got out." Earning them the right to charge a quarter at the door. Now, with over 10 million albums sold worldwide, catch Spyro Gyra at The Rialto Theater... In much the same way that menudo is doled out after a hard day's night of drinking, Pedro y Los Líricos return to Exo Bar to serve up flavorful rancheras, cumbias y norteñas, caliente y picante... The Exbats mark the release of their fiendishly rad latest, I Got The Hots for Charlie Watts, on über-hip Burger Records, with an all-ages tape release soirée at D&D Pinball... Formerly known as Young De, rapper Demrick will be spitting into a mic at Solar Culture. With Cash Lansky, Marley B, Jae Tilt, R3D, Parris, Mike Regal, Q the Phenom and more... The indie-folk/blues/street music of Half-Broke Town, said to be introducing new material, will perform at Saint Charles Tavern. With a solo set by chanteuse Keli Carpenter...

Sunday, Jan. 21: In a rare acoustic presentation, local heroes Brian Lopez and Gabriel Sullivan host an acoustic evening at Exo Bar... They formed in NYC in 1981. With nine studio albums to their credit, they're not letting the bastards grind 'em down. The Toasters will be skanking at The Flycatcher... No, this is not an international forum for governments of developing nations. This is a summit of a different sort. G3 is the brainchild of guitar hero Joe Satriani, who from inception, in 1995, created a platform for world class guitarists and their devotees to congregate and worship guitar wizardry. Says Satriani, "I think part of its mojo is in the chemistry of having three top guitarists share what they do on stage. It's fun, unpredictable and wild." Satriani, John Petrucci (Dream Theater) and Phil Collen (Def Leppard) will shred at The Fox Theatre... Two shows close out Tucson Jazz Festival 2018: A jazz brunch with local jazz hero/pianist Jeff Haskell, Jason Carder and Brice Winston at Johnny Gibson's. And, later in the evening, hard-swinging trombonist Wycliffe Gordon and bassist/vocalist Jay Leonhart perform at Club Congress. Gordon was named Trombonist of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association nine times since 2001. And, Leonhart's expansive résumé includes work with Duke Ellington, Buddy Rich, Sting, James Taylor, Luciano Pavarotti and others... Where to find the funkiest brunch in town? At La Cocina, of course, when multi-instrumentalists Mik & Scott perform...

Tuesday, Jan. 23: On "Kinda Don't Care," off of Justin Moore's fourth studio album bearing the same title he professes, "I've been workin' like a dog/I've been goin' to church..." Yet, unrepentantly, he still doesn't give a good goddamn. "I kinda wanna find a pretty little thing.../Knowin' in the mornin' that it ain't goin' nowhere." Out on his Hell On A Highway Tour Justin Moore creeps into the Tucson Convention Center Arena. With Dylan Scott...

Wednesday, Jan. 24: Public Brewhouse is the venue where Little Cloud inspirit their ukelele based indie/dream pop to life... Is lo-fi/experimental/pop/electronica your thing? Los Angeles' Holy Pink describe themselves as "cosmic music about cacti blooms, kaleidoscopes and slow motion." With Phoenix noise poppers Kolezanka and the "sad girl-pop" of Language Barrier. At Club Congress...

Thursday, Jan. 25: Owing much debt to Cream, Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin, heavy psychedelic rockers Radio Moscow attempt to pay it forward with the release of their fifth studio album New Beginnings (Century Media Records, 2017). Stacks of amplifiers, cranked to deafening levels, act as sonic temple where the reverent can pay homage to the gods of rock from days of yore. With Amplified Heat at 191 Toole...

ON THE HORIZON...

When asked what can attendees expect of his upcoming solo show. Howe Gelb replies, "I never know. But probably acoustic. A piano and guitar," Intrigued? See which of the nine goddesses, the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne, manifest when one of Tucson's most prolific songwriters chases muses on Friday, Jan. 26 at Exo Bar. With, Oregon by way of Humboldt County, country/folk singer-songwriter Gabe Rozzell... Combining elements of avant-garde and classical music with the theatricality of the Broadway musical, Mass is a work for orchestra and choir by composer Leonard Bernstein. Commissioned by Jacqueline Kennedy, it debuted publicly in 1971. A lifelong activist, Bernstein created musical tension and potent dialogue in this masterwork. Mass explores the human condition—socially and religiously—following the cultural upheaval of the post-Kennedy era. It is ultimately seen as a work of peace. UA Presents Bernstein Mass featuring Grammy-nominated True Concord, baritone Jubilant Sykes, UA Dance and Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus. Two performances: Friday, Jan. 26 and Sunday, Jan. 28 at Centennial Hall... A unique cultural event awaits, Saturday, Feb. 10. Relish Native American art, basket weaving, food, fashion, lowrider car show and music all at The Sixth Annual Pascua Yaqui Festival of the Arts. With The B.O.S. Gang (rock), The Demons (classic rock), The Hip Hop Hour (curated by Phat Records), Conjunto Bravo (intertribal cumbia and ranchera) and FLG (a tribute to Santana) at Pascua Yaqui Pueblo Park...

Until next week, XOXO...

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