Relocated to Austin, Texas, after decades in L.A., and still crafting cool rockin' Americana pop gems, Windom, Minn., native Randy Weeks returns to showcase a new CD, "Going My Way." The name might put you in mind of Bing Crosby, but the title track is closer in lyrical spirit to the Waterboys' cheerfully carnal "And a Bang on the Ear." The disc also features a Weeks classic from his days with the Lonesome Strangers, "Fine Way to Treat Me." (9:30 p.m. Thu., Lee's Liquor Lounge, $6. Also playing next Friday at St. Cloud's White Horse Saloon and May 9 at Duluth's Rex Liquor Emporium). (T.S.)

Billed as a "double date" with two husband/wife duos, Bostonians Matt and Shannon Heaton and the Twin Cities' Brian Miller and Norah Rendell are teaming up to help wed local Irish music fans with a new center dedicated to all things Celtic. Both acts play acoustic folk music heavily steeped in Irish flute. The Heatons just issued a CD, "Lovers' Well," full of traditional and original love songs. (7:30 p.m. Thu., Celtic Junction, 836 Prior Av., St. Paul. $10-$12.) (C.R.)

BLUES

Born in New York City and long residing in Stockholm, Sweden, Eric Bibb nevertheless delivers a countrified sound that's straight from the rural South. His smooth, charming folk-blues recalls Taj Mahal and Keb Mo, and before them Brownie McGhee and Josh White. An easygoing showman, Bibb was destined for a career in music. He's the son of 1960s folk star Leon Bibb, the nephew of Modern Jazz Quartet pianist John Lewis and the godchild of Paul Robeson. (7 p.m. Tue.-Wed., Dakota Jazz Club. $20.) (T.S.)

POP/ROCK

Since 1995, Elton John and Billy Joel have occasionally toured together to play their hits from the 1970s and '80s. Arrive on time because these Hall of Fame piano men start together, then do separate sets with their own bands before ending three-plus hours later with an all-hands-on-stage jam. (7:30 p.m. Tue., Xcel Energy Center, $54-$179.50.) (J.B.)

Eddie & the Hot Rods, the pride of England's pub-rock scene circa 1976, influenced lots of British punk bands that became hotter than the Rods. Louder and faster than the other pub rockers, Eddie and his boys became famous on both sides of the Atlantic for "Teenage Depression" and "Do Anything You Wanna Do." After reuniting for a U.K. tour in 2000, the Rods -- still featuring original lead vocalist Barrie Masters -- are on their first extensive U.S. tour in years. Opening are the Vibrators, Prima Donna and Johnny Madcap and the Distractions. (9 p.m. today, Triple Rock, $12-$15.) (J.B.)

Aussie singer/songwriter Colin Hay is already making hay for "American Sunshine," which won't be released until summer. It will be his 10th solo album since Men at Work hung up their hard hats. Now based in Los Angeles, he's touring solo this time after stints with Ringo Starr and acting gigs on "Scrubs" and "JAG." Milwaukee's Peter Mulvey opens. (8 p.m. today, Cedar Cultural Center, sold out.) (J.B.)

In an era when alt-rockers mostly raged and Elvis Costello was writing with Burt Bacharach, Fastball snuck onto the radio with smart, catchy pop/rock hits such as "The Way," "You're an Ocean" and "Fire Escape." The Austin, Texas, trio is still recording timeless-sounding rock ditties, as heard on its just-issued disc "Little White Lies." Their shows are part comedy routine, too. (9 p.m. today, 400 Bar. 18 & older. $12-$15.) (C.R.)

A man of many causes, Minneapolis singer/songwriter/activist Paul Metsa has organized a two-night benefit for local food shelves. Tonight's lineup includes Curtiss A & Gini Dodds, Steve Kaul, Big Bob Scoggin and James Loney. Saturday's bill features Peter Lang, Tom Lieberman and Tim Gadban. Of course, Metsa will sing both nights, for someone else's supper. (Show at 8 p.m. today-Sat., Driftwood Char Bar, 4415 Nicollet Av. S., Mpls. Admission by donation or food item.) (J.B.)

Thanks to the boffo success of the musical "Jersey Boys" last year at the Orpheum, Frankie Valli has been performing in the Twin Cities almost as often as the BoDeans. Valli, who turns 75 Sunday, still has a freakishly high tenor and fab falsetto, but he relies on younger Four Seasons for the hoofing and harmonizing on "Sherry" and "December 1963 (Oh, What a Night)." This show is the 27th annual benefit for the Pacer Center, which helps children with disabilities. (5 p.m. Sat., Mpls. Convention Center, $55-$550, 952-838-9000.) (J.B.)

Fresh from a lengthy spring tour that culminated in its first appearance at the Coachella fest, Minnesota's string-bowing, eternity-pondering, green-practicing, painter-accompanied rock band, Cloud Cult, is playing one of its few annual home-turf gigs to tout a new DVD documentary, "No One Said It Would Be Easy." Their playful pals from Chicago, Maps & Atlases, are driving up to open. (6:30 p.m. Sat., First Avenue, 701 1st Av. N., Mpls. $13-$15.) (C.R.)

Now officially working as Elvis Perkins in Dearland -- which is also the name of his new album -- the son of late "Psycho" actor Anthony Perkins has indeed found himself a band worthy of equal billing, an elegant but loose Americana/folk ensemble that can veer between New Orleanian funeral music to Dylan-swaggering twang-rock to Leonard Cohen-ian dirges. Dusty and operatic Oklahoma band Other Lives opens. (9 p.m. Sat., 400 Bar. 18 & older. $10.) (C.R.)

The Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards stars the first replacement in the classic Motown group. Edwards took over for David Ruffin in 1968 and was the wonderfully gruff lead voice on "Cloud Nine" and "Papa Was a Rolling Stone." He was eventually fired three times. (Original member Otis Williams has his own Temptations, while Edwards' version has existed since the 1990s.) Opening will be Martha and the Vandellas, who promise to bring a "Heat Wave" to the island. (8 p.m. Sat. , Treasure Island Casino, $30.) (J.B.)

Concept albums have been a specialty of Seattle's Queensryche. While 1988's "Operation Mindcrime" and its 2006 sequel "II" were prog-rock winners, the new "American Soldier" is overkill, a heavy-handed story about war from the point of view of our fighting men and women. (7 p.m. Sat., Myth, $28.) (J.B.)

The wacky music videos and witty songs are actually the least funny thing about Flight of the Conchords' eponymous HBO series, but that didn't stop New Zealand's "fourth most popular guitar-based digi-bongo a capella rap-funk-comedy folk duo" from putting on a hilarious show at the Orpheum a year ago. Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie are back on tour as the second season winds down. A second album is due soon on Sub Pop, with such had-to-see-'em bits from the show as "Sugalumps" and "We're Both in Love With a Sexy Lady," although hopefully their back-and-forth banter will still be the crux of this concert. Please, folks, don't ask where Murray is again. (7:30 p.m. Sun., Northrop Auditorium. $38.50-$46.50.) (C.R.)

Bloc Party makes up a date it canceled a month ago when singer Kele Okereke developed a viral throat infection. The British rockers' 2008 album "Intimacy" earned ample airplay on the Current with Cure-gone-digi-punk singles such as "Mercury." Their live show is even more hyper and sparks-filled. (9 p.m. Mon., First Avenue. 18 & older. $25.) (C.R.)

 

 

JAZZ

Probing, lyrical, propulsive and funky at times, the 2008 Grammy-nominated "Brad Mehldau Trio Live" is one of the pianist's best albums. Culled from six nights at the fabled Village Vanguard, the two-CD set includes covers of everyone from Oasis ("Wonderwall") to Coltrane ("Countdown") while showing off a terrific working band, co-starring bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Jeff Ballard. (7 & 9:30 p.m. Sun., Dakota Jazz Club. $30-$40.) (T.S.)

COUNTRY

Vince Gill hasn't released a new album since "These Days" in 2006. That's OK because that four-disc collection of all-new material was the year's best album in any genre. Between all those new tunes and his jukebox full of hits, Nashville's best all-around talent will have more than enough great material to make sure that he doesn't have to repeat tunes at his two shows. His quick wit makes every show different, too. Always highly recommended. (8 p.m. today-Sat., Mystic Lake Casino, $63-$79.) (J.B.)

WORLD

Fans of Armenian music get a rare treat this weekend at the Festival of Nations. Legendary oud player and singer Richard Hagopian, winner of a National Heritage Fellowship for his tireless dedication to Ottoman Empire musical lore, will finally make his Minnesota debut after a half-century. He'll be joined by his equally illustrious son, Harold Hagopian, a virtuosic violinist, plus harpist, clarinetist and record producer. The elder Hagopian's oud work is driving and dazzling, while Harold deftly plays a 72-string harp called the kanun. (6:30 & 8:30 p.m. today, 7:30 & 8:30 Sat., RiverCentre, W. 7th St. & Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul. $10.) (T.S.)

CLASSICAL

"If you don't know what you're doing," a friend once said, "don't mess with Schubert." Happily, Israeli pianist Shai Wosner, winner of an Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2005, seems to know exactly what he's doing. His all-Schubert recital, the final presentation of the Frederic Chopin Society's season, begins with the "little" A-major Sonata, traverses the "Moments Musicaux" and ends with the self-consciously extroverted Sonata in D. (3 p.m. Sun., Wallace Fine Arts Center, Macalester College, 130 Macalester St., St. Paul. $12-$20. 612-822-0123.) (L.F.)

Jewish themes have loomed large in the work of composer/pianist Paul Schoenfield -- a sometime Twin Citian, recently named professor of composition at the University of Michigan -- but never larger than in his new "Ghetto Songs," based on the poems of Mordecai Gebertig, the so-called troubadour of the Krakow Ghetto. The Chamber Music Society of Minnesota's season finale also includes a Mozart sonata (K.304), played by Schoenfield and longtime duo partner Young-Nam Kim. (4 p.m. Sun., 3M Auditorium, Minnesota History Center, 345 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul. $15-$25. 651-450-0527.) (L.F.)

Contributors: Staff critics Jon Bream and Chris Riemenschneider and freelancers Larry Fuchsberg and Tom Surowicz.