Jim Joyce of Minneapolis:
1 “We Gotta Get Out of This Place” by Doug Bradley. An in-depth account of the music that helped soldiers in Vietnam get through and beyond the war.
2 “Abbey Road” cover photo at the Jimmy Wilson Gallery in Minneapolis. It’s a limited-edition print by Iain Macmillan of the iconic crosswalk stroll by the Beatles on Aug. 8, 1969.
3 Brandy Clark at the Turf Club next Thursday. Catch the edgy country singer with her wry takedowns of love, fidelity and small-town life in songs such as “Love Can Go to Hell” and “Girl Next Door.”
Jon Bream of the Star Tribune:
1 Brian Setzer Orchestra, the State. Even though mid-November is too early for a Christmas show, it didn’t matter. Terrific big-band arrangements, marvelous guitar work from the bandleader and even salutes to Glen Campbell and Tom Petty.
2 “Come Back, Barack,” “Saturday Night Live.” In a takeoff on a classic Boyz II Men video, Kenan Thompson, Chance the Rapper and Chris Redd got down on bended knee and begged for an Obama return. Hilarious.
3 Tower of Power, the Dakota. After 40 minutes of funky, unfamiliar tunes, the 49-year-old Oakland R&B machine revisited the 1970s in style. New singer Marcus Scott is finding his groove during these six sold-out shows.