March’s ultra-busy concert calendar is starting off with a bang this weekend. Two of the year’s biggest music festivals — M3F and Innings Fest — are happening, as will shows by masked guitar fiend Buckethead, country singer-songwriter Jade Jackson, rap legend Kool Keith, and noise band Daughters.
Plus, Neal Schon of Journey will be taking a trip down memory lane at The Van Buren and popular Daft Punk tribute act One More Time will go harder, faster, and stronger at Shady Park in Tempe.
Details about each of these shows and event can be found below in our list of the best concerts this weekend. And for even more live music happening around Valley, hit up Phoenix New Times' online concert calendar.
Neal Schon's Journey Through Time
Friday, March 1
The Van Buren
Since 1973, Neal Schon has been the one constant in Journey, which formed in San Francisco during one of the city’s most delicious musical periods. Over the years, the band has gone through more than a dozen lineup changes with worldwide album sales that have hit around 90 million — basically making them one of the top-selling bands of all time. And with solid arena tracks like “Wheel in the Sky” (1978), “Any Way You Want It” (1981), and “Don’t Stop Believin’” (1981), it’s a wonder that it took until October 2016 for the band to be nominated for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
But Journey is only one of the colors of Schon’s musical palette. For the 2016 album Santana IV, he reunited with the early 1970s lineup of Santana for the first time in more than 40 years to record 16 brand-new tracks. His soulful guitar style and penchant for writing arena-filling songs
This weekend, Schon brings his Journey Through Time project to The Van Buren in downtown Phoenix. As its name portends, the tour celebrates Journey’s legendary catalog and features Schon performing alongside the band’s former keyboard player Gregg Rolie and their onetime drummer Deen Castronovo, as well as Marco Mendoza, Marti Frederiksen, and Chris Collins. Expect to hear a mix of deep cuts and greatest hits during the show, which starts at 7:30 p.m. Lauren Wise
Friday, March 1
The Rebel Lounge
Known for unpredictability, the Providence, Rhode Island-bred noise band Daughters reaffirmed that reputation with its latest release, You Won’t Get What You Want. A captivating horror score punctuated by layered guitar shrieks and wails, the record picks up where the group's previous release, 2009’s Daughters, left off, for a hair-raising 10-song,
One More Time: A Tribute to Daft Punk
Friday, March 1
Shady Park in Tempe
Is there room for two Daft Punks in the world? Really, there’s barely room for the one, at least psychically — but One More Time found a tribute-band-shaped space somewhere in there and managed to cram in their own Daft Punk light-up pyramid.
Founded well before the release of Random Access Memories, One More Time
They got all the details handled, including some particularly deft costume changes, and they come with enough power to push through an hour-plus set of Daft Punk hits, sleeper hits, and even some original remixes. Harder, better, faster, stronger? Well, definitely hard and fast and strong enough. Chris Ziegler
McDowell Mountain Music Festival 2019
Friday, March 1, to Sunday, March 3
Margaret T. Hance Park
Generally thought of as the "coolest" festival in metro Phoenix thanks to its relatively tasteful lineup, M3F 2019 will attempt to outdo the excellence of last year's Cut Copy and Father John Misty-infused brew with a heaping helping of indie goodness and just a dash of electronica. ODESZA and Empire of the Sun will headline; other high-profile acts playing include Toro y Moi, Kurt Vile, Jungle, Chicano Batman, Kevin Morby, and Maribou State. There are also local acts such as Phoenix Afrobeat Orchestra and Cheap Hotels, and as always 100 percent of the proceeds will be donated to local charities such as Phoenix Children's Hospital and Habitat for Humanity of Northern Arizona. Douglas Markowitz
Saturday, March 2
The Rogue Bar
In case you haven’t heard the news, beloved south Scottsdale dive and music venue The Rogue Bar is closing at the end of April after nearly two decades of hosting rock shows and dance nights. As a result, the folks behind its regular dance nights are planning to bid a fond farewell to The Rogue by getting down one final time at the infamous nightspot. That includes local fetish-oriented performance troupe The Agents of Lust, who have put on many debaucherous dance parties at Rogue Bar in recent years and will do so on Saturday, March 2, during Last Lust.
The licentious and libertine affair will feature sets by over-the-top industrial rock bands like S.L.U.T. and Casket Snatch, as well as spin sessions from //she//, the Reverand DJ Razorslave, and others. Naturally, the members of The Agents of Lust will take to the Rogue’s stage and perform a variety of sexy stripteases and spark-slinging grinder sessions. The party runs from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. Admission is $10. Benjamin Leatherman
Saturday, March 2
BLK Live in Scottsdale
The artist known as Buckethead is an unusual variant on "guitar hero." He knows six-string constructs like a salamander knows wet leaves, but few know the face, or identity, of Buckethead (due to his ever-present bucket-shaped hood and face mask).
Buckethead's style is forged from the metallic assaults of Slayer and Steve Vai, Eddie Hazel's psychedelic funk, and the free-improvised fervency of saxophonists John Zorn and Peter Brotzmann. Buckethead started out with Bay Area funksters the Deli Creeps, then branched out to record and/or perform with disparate luminaries including Les Claypool, Bernie Worrell, and actor/poet Viggo Mortensen (yes, Aragorn from the Lord of the Rings films), and even did a stint in the re-formed Guns N' Roses.
It's anyone's guess what Buckethead has in store for his show at BLK Live in Scottsdale on Saturday, but whatever it is, you can bet the rent it'll be memorable. Mark Keresman
SkaterCon After-Party feat. Kool Keith
Saturday, March 2
Yucca Tap Room in Tempe
Kool Keith is a hip-hop legend going back more than 30 years to rap's early beginnings. The onetime Bellevue patient was a member of seminal Bronx group Ultramagnetic MCs before striking out on his own to forge some of the most outlandish rap characters in the pantheon: Doctor Octagon and his eventual assailant/replacement Dr. Doom. Keith's imagination is as rich and impressionistic as
Innings Festival 2019
Saturday, March 2, and Sunday, March 3
Tempe Beach Park
Although it's happening the same weekend as M3F, the Innings Festival held at Tempe Beach Park is catering to a decidedly different crowd: the horde of baseball fans that invade every year for spring training. To wit, they've prepared a lineup that's
Sunday, March 3
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Growing up in the small central Californian town of Santa Margarita, there weren’t a lot of ways for Jade Jackson to escape the confines of slow rural life. But at an early age, she picked up the guitar and started writing music to pass the time and entertain herself. With her 2017 debut album, Gilded, Jackson finds herself becoming the pioneer she had envisioned for herself early on, setting out onto the road: “I’m somewhere in second gear, I’m using my knees to steer.” Julian Hernandez
Sunday, March 3
Underneath the hushed whispers and smooth melodies on Pecas’ latest single, “T-Shirt,” there lies a more sinister suggestion. The Brooklyn musician creates romantic fantasies with her particular blend of dream-pop and R&B that she calls a “play” on “baby-making” music. Joining Pecas are the art rockers Gustaf, who transform the music hall into an art experience that one would have expected to see in 1970s New York City. The local Phoenix band Love