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Goo Goo Dolls

Asia Geiger,

Dick Dale

Associated Press,

Kenny Chesney

RENEE ITTNER-MCMANUS McClatchy News Service,

Willie Nelson

Ben Noey Jr. • McClatchy News Service,

Gary Hart

Andrew Moxom,

Beyonce

Parkwood Entertainment,

Bruno Mars

Associated Press,

Big Gigs: Kenny Chesney, Basilica Block Party, Beyonce

  • July 12, 2013 - 3:48 PM


COUNTRY

For the second consecutive summer, Target Field is instantly sold out for stadium king Kenny Chesney, who has sold nearly 10 million concert tickets in the past 10 years. Opening for the No Shoes Nation Tour are Zac Brown Band, a bona fide headliner even though they’re an overgrown bar band; the Eli Young Band, which has scored two No. 1 country songs despite an inability to compel live, and exciting newcomer Kacey Musgraves, whose “Merry Go Round” was one of best country singles of 2012. Don’t expect Chesney’s latest album, the breezy, beachy, almost casual “Life on a Rock,” to be a big part of the stadium repertoire. (4 p.m. Fri. Target Field, sold out.) Jon Bream

Fresh from the 40th anniversary installment of his temperature-defying Texas 4th of July Picnic and the big Twister Relief Concert in Oklahoma, Willie Nelson doesn’t play many summer gigs as intimate as the one he’s offering here. The 80-year-old American music icon has lost some members of his previously resilient Family Band in recent years, but he impressively keeps on ticking — and picking. His jazzy, ruggedly elegant acoustic guitar skills are often more a focal point of the shows nowadays in lieu of his other bandmates, although longtime harp-blower Mickey Raphael’s unmistakable work remains integral. Everyone wonders: Might this be ol’ Willie’s last stand in the Twin Cities? Probably not, but it could be one of his more memorable visits. (7:30 p.m. Tue., Minnesota Zoo, sold out.) Chris Riemenschneider

POP/ROCK

Since her last tour, Beyoncé has severed business ties with her longtime manager/father, given birth to her first child, released two new perfumes, performed at the Super Bowl halftime show, lip-synced the national anthem at President Obama’s second inauguration, reunited with Destiny’s Child for a recording session and scored a few R&B hits. This spring, she hit the road with the Mrs. Carter Show World Tour, an extravaganza featuring an all-female band, glamorous outfits, sexy dancing and everything you’d expect from Queen Bey. (8 p.m. Thu. Xcel Energy Center, $47-$252.) Bream

This certainly isn’t the hippest lineup at the Basilica Block Party. Mayer Hawthorne (Friday) and Raphael Saadiq (Saturday) are cool R&B throwbacks who wear big glasses, and Father John Misty, he of the gorgeous voice and eccentric musical styles, may be too cool for the occasion. But then Saturday’s one-two punch of Matchbox Twenty and Goo Goo Dolls are crowd-pleasing purveyors of mainstream radio hits. Friday offers two vocal powershouses — newcomer ZZ Ward and headliner Grace Potter, who was more impressive last year opening for Kenny Chesney at Target Field (coincidentally he’s there tonight again) than last winter at First Avenue focusing on the Nocturnals’ aggressive, ambitous album “The Lion the Beast the Beat.” The 19th annual, two-day, three-stage, 19-act block party raises money for the restoration of the Basilica of St. Mary. (5:30 p.m. Fri.-Sat., Basilica of St. Mary, Mpls., $60 for one night, $100 for both.) Jon Bream 

Twin Cities music stalwart Grant Hart has endured a lot of tribulations over the past couple of years, including a house fire and his mother’s death. Despite all that, the former Hüsker Dü co-leader also managed to complete his most ambitious recording project, a new concept disc called “The Argument” based on “Paradise Lost,” 17th-century English poet John Milton’s epic take on Adam and Eve. The 21-track collection is wildly imaginative, sometimes bizarre and often harrowing, harking back to the Hüskers’ opus “Zen Arcade” and especially to “The Last Days of Popmpeii” by another of Hart’s bands, Nova Mob. It’s coming out July 22 via Domino Records, the London label behind Arctic Monkeys and Animal Collective. Between European tour dates with a new Irish backing band, Hart will offer a solo preview of the new songs with openers the Rank Strangers, whose studio-helming leader Mike Wisti helped Hart record the album. (10 p.m. Fri., Turf Club, $7.) Riemenschneider

More fun than a barrel of weasels, the Grandmothers of Invention do a bang-up job of reviving Frank Zappa’s brilliant, whacked, timeless music for new audiences. Their past Twin Cities shows were giddy Zappa love-fests, combining knockout music with ample laughs. This time, your two grand Mothers of yore are keyboard magician Don Preston and gregarious, outlandish singer extraordinaire/saxophonist Napoleon Murphy Brock. This is the Grandmothers’ “One Size Fits All” tour, so expect to hear that 1975 album in all its glory, plus sundry countercultural hits. Max Kutner is in the pivotal lead guitar role, Dave Johnson is on bass and terrific youngster Christopher Garcia is on drums. (8 p.m. Sat., Dakota Jazz Club, $25.) Tom Surowicz 

After playing the Basilica, Cabooze Plaza and Rock the Garden in recent years, the Hold Steady found yet another fun excuse to return to Minnesota for an outdoor gig this year: The St. John’s Block Party, a smaller and less radio-driven version of the Basilica fundraiser bash that’s 90 minutes from the Twin Cities. Enjoying a mostly quiet year off, the noisy Midwest-reared Brooklyn rockers top a 10th annual SJBP lineup that also includes acidic Texas/Arizona desert twang-punks the Meat Puppets, Trampled by Turtles’ electric offshoot Dead Man Winter, former BoDeans singer/songwriter Sammy Llanas, Lucy Michelle, Enemy Planes and more, including a family entertainment area. (3-10 p.m. Sat., Church of St. John the Evangelist, 11 4th Av. SW., Rochester. $35, free under 12, SJBlockParty.org.) Riemenschneider

Unlike the average block party that centers on one or two stages, Barbette restaurant’s Bastille Day Block Party truly fills up the block, with such sideshow attractions as the Infiammati Fire Circus, Heart of the Beast Puppet & Mask Theater, dance collective Epitome-No Question and roaming sets by the Brass Messengers. As for the performances on stage, they’ll cover a decently wide swath, too, with punk vets the Suicide Commandos tearing it up alongside folky 89.3 the Current sweethearts John Mark Nelson and Lucy Michelle -- performing sans the Velvet Lapelles and with John Munson, Chan Poling and Chris Koza for backers -- plus Nashville dance-rock band Leagues and burlesque star Nadine Dubois. (3-10 p.m. Sun., Lagoon St. and Irving Av. S., Mpls., free.) Riemenschneider

 

Another local Bastille Day tradition, British pub-rock vet Graham Parker — featured prominently albeit somewhat dubiously in Judd Apatow’s recent comedy “This Is 40” — will fly solo on the second-story lawn-bowling deck at Minneapolis’ biggest British pub. This year, the “Hold Back the Night” singer is sandwiched between the Actors Theater of Minnesota’s condensed Shakespeare show and the Belfast Cowboys’ elaborate take on Van Morrison. (3-10 p.m. Sun., Brit’s Pub, 1110 Nicollet Mall, free.) Riemenschneider

 

On record, Bruno Mars sounds like a hitmaking chameleon, trying to emulate Michael Jackson here, Sam Cooke there and even Journey on some material. In concert, the multi-talented man behind “Grenade” and “When I Was Your Man” is a hardworking, heavy-sweating, old-school R&B showman, with moves that owe as much to James Brown as to Jackson. Opening Mars’ Moonshine Jungle Tour is Ellie Goulding, the Brit pop star behind the hit “Lights.” (7:30 p.m. Sun. Xcel Energy Center, $29.50-$84.) Bream

 

It’s been more than a decade since Dick Dale released his last new album, “Spacial Disorientation.” But the California guitar god is still firing off intense flurries of staccato notes and happily drenching fans with reverb at age 76. Always fan-friendly, Dale will play “Misirlou,” “Let’s Go Trippin’ ” and the rest of his catch-a-wave hits, then meet-and-greet landlocked fans at the front of the stage. (8 p.m Tue., Cabooze, $23-$25.) Surowicz

 

Leftover Cuties may be a precious moniker but somehow it fits the Los Angeles quartet fronted by sultry-voiced, Israeli army vet Shirli McAllen. Imagine a ukulele-strumming Amy Winehouse playing vintage swing and ragtime and crooning bittersweet ballads with the pluck of Nellie McKay. The Cuties’ new disc, “The Spark & the Fire,” features original material with a retro feel. But they’ve been known to do a pretty cool treatment of Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face,” and they also recorded the theme song for Showtime’s “The Big C.” (7 p.m. Wed. Dakota Jazz Club, $12.) Bream

When tickets went on sale more than a year ago for One Direction, who knew that this would be the Summer of the Boy Band? Yes, in the next few weeks, the Twin Cities will see not only 1D — the still immensely popular mop-topped British-Irish pop quintet that has mastered vocal harmonies but reportedly not unison choreography — but their distant rivals, the Wanted, and old-school boy-bands New Kids on the Block, 98 Degrees and Boyz II Men. Teenage dreams may die, but tween crushes never do. Earplugs are recommended. (7:30 p.m. Thu. Target Center, sold out.) Bream

 

For avid 93X-FM listeners, Godsmack is bordering on classic-band status, a reputation buoyed locally by such memorable performances at the last X-Fest at Midway Stadium in 2011 and repeat visits to the Cadott Rock Fest. The brawny Boston crunch kings are staying indoors this time, playing one of only 10 summer dates here as they prepare to record their first album since 2010’s “The Oracle.” (7:30 p.m. Thu., Myth, all ages, $42.) Riemenschneider

JAZZ

“Friends,” the 2011 album by two-handed “tapping” guitar marvel Stanley Jordan, was a star-studded affair with contributions from Regina Carter, Bucky Pizzarelli, Kenny Garrett, Nicholas Payton and others. When Jordan returns to the Dakota he’ll be all by himself, but seeing him play solo is like seeing at least two musicians in one body, as he simultaneously plays melody and chords, or guitar and piano — there’s never been anyone quite like him. Lately, he’s been discovered by the jam band crowd, thanks to guest concert work with the Dave Matthews Band, String Cheese Incident, Umphrey’s McGee and Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh. (7 p.m. Thu., Dakota Jazz Club, $30.) Surowicz









 

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