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Hard to believe. It's 2020. Best wishes along with all of the auspices that come with the Year of the Rat.

Mark your calendars...

Thursday, Jan. 2

Based in Las Vegas, this '60s nostalgia group is comprised of four lead singers and multi-instrumentalists. Deftly they recreate harmony-laden songs from The British Invasion, Summer of Love and Vietnam War Era. "No filler. Just 100% classic hit songs." Sixtiesmania are at Casino Del Sol... Feel the irie vibe. ZeeCeeKeely play roots reggae at Arizona Beer House...

Friday, Jan. 3

click to enlarge courtesy photo - The Kinda Cool Quintet: Friday, Jan. 3 @ The Dusty Monk Pub.
  • courtesy photoThe Kinda Cool Quintet: Friday, Jan. 3 @ The Dusty Monk Pub.

Not for the faint of heart: Sonoran Violence is a hardcore punk festival. This year features performances by Infest (one of the pioneers of the extremely dissonant/fast powerviolence subgenre), Iron Lung (purveyors in destructive hardcore), Sex Prisoner (Tucson hardcore/powerviolence punks) and more. At Club Congress... Succeeded by a dust-up at Owls Clubs. Sonoran Violence After-Party features: Arizona hardcorists Get A Grip, Concrete Evidence and Lychee (Phoenix emo/punk/garage rockers). DJs Castle, Freak and Nitro throw down... Hailing from Guadalajara, indie rock songstress—and founder of the Now Girls Rule movement in Mexico intended to inspire women in the arts—Elis Paprika & The Black Pilgrims play at The Boxyard. Local cumbiancheros Santa Pachita round out the night... Ready to rock yo' body, Cra$h Magic's repertoire covers a lot of ground, except "probably, not country or zydeco." At Crooked Tooth Brewing Co... Here is a kid-friendly event. Dance to the uncategorizable world beat music of Baba Marimba imbued with a very special ingredient: Joy. At Monterey Court... An undoubtedly 21+ event. Centennial Celebration: 100 Years of Tease strips away the past to welcome the next gen. Ms. Trixie Phillips has assembled a sensational cast—Stormy Leigh, Nikki Riot, Bunny Boom Boom and many others—to recap the decades from the 1920s to the present day through the art of striptease...At Surly Wench. The Kinda Cool Quintet plays brisk post-war jazz sorta awesomely. At The Dusty Monk Pub... Local imprint Diet Pop Records presents a House Party showcasing the talent of candy-coated punk poppers Big Bad, the intersectional bummer pop of California's Sarchasm and the punk 'n' roll of teen sensations Stripes. "It's at a house. So be cool..." Resident DJs W3$T Friday and Elektra Tek host some of the Old Pueblo's top and up-and-coming turntablists. Funk Yo House Fridays goes off at Irene's Holy Donuts... Tattered and Torn, Black Cat Bones strew their "Dead Broke Blues" at Chicago Bar... House beats meets whiskey and donut pairings? Yes. It's delish. Beatz & Sweetz hosted by DJ Nic, finds Phatal, DJ Hart and ZAW spinning a baker's dozen of the freshest house music. First Fridays at Batch Cafe & Bar... Diminutive but mighty. Connie Brannock's Tiny House of Funk invites all to come get "boogie oogie oogie till you just can't boogie no more." At Sand-Reckoner...

Saturday, Jan. 4

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Experience your favorite bands in a different way. It's time again for The 27th Annual Wooden Ball. Your chance to see some of Tucson's finest—Sweet Ghosts, Bekkah Rolland, Billy Sedlmayr, Chris Holiman, David Slutes & Robin Johnson, Joe Peña & Joe Novelli, Josh Brown, Katie Haverly, Little Cloud, Mute Swan and Rough Draft—stripped down to naked (Er, well almost) and unplugged. At Club Congress... And, if your efforts to ring out the old were indefatigable—killin' 'em like a rockstar—you may need a little hair of the dog. 80's Hangover features Cured, Arena, Blonde Day and Careless Whisper paying tribute to the music of The Cure, Duran Duran, Blondie and George Michael & Wham. Break out a can of Aqua Net and kohl eyeliner. At The Rialto Theatre... Some say he was born a country outlaw with a classic rock attitude, Caiden Brewer shimmies and sways in the Paradiso Lounge at Casino Del Sol... Like the title of her 2017 album announces, Ven y Baila, tejano singer Natajja welcomes all to come out and dance. In the Tropico Lounge at Casino Del Sol... Folk harp and viola delicately commingle to arrive at a mysterious landing. Mariah McCammond and Deanna Cross are The Hatpin Duo. In the tasting room at Sand-Reckoner... Holding steady after 34 years, reggae institution Neon Prophet demonstrate just "How The West Was Won." At Chicago Bar. DJ Papa Ranger mans the decks between sets...

Sunday, Jan. 5

Before coming to America, as one-half of French avant-pop outfit Amor-Belhom Duo, this accomplished guitarist started out on the Parisian underground punk scene. Gabriel Naim Amor performs the more introspective, jazzier side of his repertoire. At The Coronet... Known for her prodigious electric and acoustic violin work, soulful blues belter Heather "Lil' Mama" Hardy performs at Chicago Bar... Monday, Jan. 6

P.D. Ronstadt & The Co. are at Chicago Bar, performing post-modern American western, the first and last Mondays of the month...

Tuesday, Jan. 7

click to enlarge courtesy photo - Eric Tessmer: Tuesday, Jan. 7 @ The Rock.
  • courtesy photoEric Tessmer: Tuesday, Jan. 7 @ The Rock.

At 19—too young to get into clubs and unable to afford an apartment—this aspiring blues musician left the comforts of home to pursue music in Austin, Texas. He sang in gospel choirs and lived in his rehearsal space. Now, named the Best Blues Guitarist by the Austin Chronicle, Eric Tessmer makes strings bleed at The Rock. Black Cat Bones opens... Taco Techno Tuesdays sees DJ Atom Energy banging EDM. At Batch Cafe & Bar...

Wednesday, Jan. 8

Drawing from a magic hat filled with the music of the Grateful Dead, classic rock, reggae and originals, singer/guitarist Dan Stein & Friends holds down a Wednesday night residency. Through April at Irene's Holy Donuts... Ear to the ground. Folk punks Holy Locust wheel the Westward Winter Tour 2020 to a House Party. With Dead West, Gutter Town, Dr. Soap and Mary Fuego... Sway Dollaaz leads this all-ages hip-hop extravaganza. Lil' Salvia, Bravo, Jae Tilt and Trapmatt share the mic. At Club Congress... Kids of all ages, skate fast, sing along loudly to all your fav emo, indie and pop-punk jams. Emo Skate Night at Skate Country...

Thursday, Jan. 9

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Eek. The Cyclops Invasion is coming. From Philly, dubstep DJ/producer Subtronics fills Gentle Ben's with angry, bouncy robot noise... "You keep your mind on the money/Keeping your eyes on the wall." Covering a career that spanned five decades, Private Dancer: A Tribute to Tina Turner slink into the Casino Del Sol... A taste of Spain in downtown Tucson? Alternating weekly, singer-songwriters Amanda Rochelle and Natalie Pohanic shall serenade for Tapas & Tonics. In the lounge at the AC Hotel Tucson... Oro Valley 2nd Thursdays Concert Series presents, "Wild Women," vocalist Diane Van Deurzen and pianist Lisa Otey. They will perform hot jazz, sultry blues and boogie woogie. At Oro Valley Marketplace... Featuring pianist Doug Martin and upright bassist Scott Black, The Jed Paradies Trio play bossa novas, ballads and blues. At The Coronet... Looking for something a little off the beaten path? The ninth annual Tucson Fringe Festival kicks off tonight. This year's fest includes 22 shows ranging from aerial dance performances, sketch comedy, unscripted storytelling y mas. Runs through Jan. 12. See tucsonfringe.org for all the details... Electronically looping together snippets of funk, rap, jazz and R&B, multi-instrumentalist Mik Garrison performs at Arizona Beer House... This installment of Ladytowne: A Tucson feminist talk/variety show features the comedy of Molly McCloy. The music of Flor de Nopal. Interviews with Nirantha Balagopal & Sophie McTear (from Groundworks), Nelene Deguzman (of The Rifle) and Darío Andrade Mendoza will speak about a recent workshop regarding the epidemic of loneliness. At Club Congress...

On The Horizon

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The Sixth Annual Tucson Jazz Festival 2020 is a destination festival that brings world class jazz by plane, train and automobile to downtown Tucson. Last year's multiday soirée drew over 20,000 attendees from around the globe. Headlining this year's fest: David Sanborn Jazz Quintet, Grace Kelly & Aubrey Logan, David Hazeltine and The New York All-Stars, Allison Miller's Boom Tic Boom, Average White Band, Afro-Cuban All-Stars, Christian McBride & Inside Straight, Mavis Staples and a whole lot more. The occupation runs Jan 10-Jan 20. See tucsonjazzfestival.org for all the details... He's collaborated with James Brown, George Clinton and Prince. Embodying the legacy of soul and funk, like no other. On Friday, Jan. 10, saxophonist Maceo Parker & His Big Band kick-offs of the Jazz Fest at Centennial Hall...

Until next week, XOXO...

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