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Best Art Gallery
Best Concert
Best Dinner Scene In A Play
Best Interactive Dance Performance
Best Leap Of Faith
Best Local Artist--Performing
Best Local Artist--Visual
Best Local Arts Administrator
Best Local Author
Best Local Dance Production
Best Local Theatre Production
Best Movie Theater
Best Mural
Best News About Desert Rock
Best Performance By A Visiting Dance Company
Best Performance Venue--Indoors
Best Performance Venue--Outdoors
Best Public Art Commission

Best Concert

K.D. Lang

READERS' PICK: Forgive us, readers. We tried. But none among us had the pleasure of seeing K.D. Lang in her debut Tucson performance at (if memory serves) the Tucson Convention Center. We'll take your word for it that it was a great show.


STAFF PICK: Funk legend George Clinton didn't bring the famed Mothership to the Outback in March, but he did bring his massive entourage The P-Funk Allstars into Tucson for more than two hours worth of irresistibly danceable and inspiring music. The refreshingly diverse crowd bounced as one to a show equal parts James Brown, Jimi Hendrix and Ringling Bros. After a somewhat late start, Clinton took the stage with a handful of musicians. More band members continued to arrive as the evening wore on, making their way onto the stage until it looked as if it could hold no more. When the Outback pulled the plug at close to 2 a.m., nearly 30 people were on stage showing no signs of slowing. The crowd left exhausted, sweaty and most importantly, happy.

A PERFECT 10: Brainy former rock critic and current nerd Ira Kaplan finally decided the axe is mightier than the pen, plugged in, and hooked up his love for the Velvet Underground with a stand-in bass player and spouse Georgie Hubley's quiet drumming, cheesy keyboard, and spare, laconic vocals. Their gig at the Congo followed an equally memorable one a few months earlier at the DPC.

You gotta wonder who's grandmother's garage was the first home for the Acetone keyboard Yo La Tengo uses, especially when you see Hubley securing the stops with strips of electrical tape before the show. No rock star 'tude for Kaplan, either. He plays hunched over at about 113°, the ensuing sound reminding you of your first kid guitar and all the weird, wonderful electric noises it could make. He coaxes a wide range of unconventional sounds out of his instrument, from squalling peals of hair-raising white noise to prolonged arias of sustained, melodic feedback which, along with the pedal-point drone of organ and hushed vocals, form the basis of Yo La Tengo's sound. Their two Tucson gigs provided a monster doubleheader. With thanks to whatever Dominican outfielder gave them the name, they've got it, all right.

Case History

1998 Winner: Los Lobos, at the Rialto Theatre
1995 Winner: George Strait

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