6 Best Concerts in Phoenix This Week
Here are our concert picks for this week. Check out our comprehensive concert calendar for more options.
Roar - Crescent Ballroom - Monday, August 24
Changes are incoming for the band New Times awarded Best Local Band in our 2013 Best of Phoenix issue. Longtime bass player Aaron Burke is leaving the band, so the remaining members are throwing him a going-away concert at Crescent Ballroom tonight, with Bear State and Dent opening. The band will march forward sans Burke, but as it wrote on its Facebook page, "We don't have to like it if we don't want to." In the meantime, you can check out the band's latest release, "Hope," a song released on a split seven-inch EP with Andrew Jackson Jihad for Record Store Day earlier this year. DAVID ACCOMAZZO
Kelly Clarkson - Ak-Chin Pavilion - Tuesday, August 25
This December, the pop-culture personality pageant that is American Idol will begin its long march to the graveyard as it launches its final season, brought on by dwindling ratings and fading interest in the show and its participants. The annual summertime "American Idol Live" concert tour, which used to regularly fill arenas and amphitheaters, recently played the Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles, where Nick Fradiani and the various runners-up failed to sell out the 2,000-seat venue. American Idol was one of the most popular TV franchises for the better part of a decade, but for all its popularity, the show generated few real-deal pop stars. Carrie Underwood became a major country hitmaker, Jordin Sparks fared well on the charts and made a striking film debut in Sparkle, and Adam Lambert's modified glam-rock swagger earned him a spot as a temporary vocalist for Queen (as well as burying all memory that he came in second to the charismatically challenged Kris Allen). But if the names David Cook, Phillip Phillips, or Lee DeWyze don't quite ring a bell lately, well, that says a lot about the show's ultimate level of influence. MARK DEMING
Korbe Canida - Crescent Ballroom - Tuesday, August 25
Our own Nicki Escudero wrote about Phoenix singer-songwriter Korbe Canida back in January: "Korbe Canida was always that loud, obnoxious girl who constantly was singing and who thrived in a musical theater setting, eventually making her way to the K-12 Arizona Conservatory for Arts and Academics. She says her animated nature led to her being bullied as a kid. Now, she is modest and self-deprecating, playing three-hour solo sets of acoustic indie folk rock with her guitar." Well, if Tuesday's concert is any indication. the days of Canida being alone on stage might be limited, as she's debuting a full band Crescent Ballroom this week. Whether it's a phase or a new direction has yet to be seen; nevertheless, it should be an interesting change of pace for one of Phoenix's promising performers. DAVID ACCOMAZZO
Jerry Douglas/Sam Bush - Musical Instrument Museum - Tuesday, August 25
Perusing dobro player and music producer Jerry Douglas' résumé should make you tired. He's long been regarded for his superb mastery of the kind of acoustic guitar that features a metal resonator built into its body. It's a talent he's not afraid to use; the man is busy. In addition to his numerous solo releases, he has performed on the recordings of more than 1,600 artists. He really mixes it up, too. The list of artists to whom he's lent his skills includes Ray Charles, Eric Clapton, Phish, and Elvis Costello. When he performs at the Musical Instrument Museum, he will be joined by bluegrass great Sam Bush. The two have combined forces many times over the years, but Douglas is excited because this time, things are a little different. "I can't believe this is the first time we have performed as a duo," Douglas says. "Attendees can expect a musical show with wit and humor from two fellows who have known each other for around 40 years. AMY YOUNG
Kid Rock - Ak-Chin Pavilion - Wednesday, August 26
Kid Rock’s Cheap Date Tour is as literal as you’d expect from the “Bawitaba” singer. The idea is that for $20, you should still be able to attend a quality concert. Well, for a grand, fee-addled total of $29, you can get a lawn seat for one of the most successful rock stars out there. Not only will the tickets be cheap, but the proud Michigan son is insisting that beers cost a mere $4 (we’ll believe it when we see it) and that tour t-shirts stay capped at $20. You have to give credit where credit’s due — not many superstars capable of selling 10,000 tickets a night care much if tickets cost $20 or $50. Of course, when you look at Kid Rock’s legacy, it’s a strange history of mixing rap and southern-rock, appropriating African-American music while flaunting a symbol of black oppression, the Confederate battle flag, behind him for many years. There wasn’t much deep thought behind his use of the symbol — in 2008 he told the Guardian that “it just looks cool” — and he stopped using the flag in 2011, when the Detroit NAACP branch awarded him a Great Expectations Award, sparking small amounts of controversy. DAVID ACCOMAZZO
House of Stairs - Thursday, August 27 - Crescent Ballroom
Singer Holly Pyle has had a busy year. In February, her vocals soared on the jazzy Phoenix hip-hop The Stakes' EP. Now, she's no longer a part of that group, but she's now hard at work with House of Stairs, a more modern (and hip-hop free) approach to jazz. The Latest and Mr. People open. DAVID ACCOMAZZO
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