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The 30 Best Concerts in Phoenix in March 2019

P!nk is scheduled to perform on Saturday, March 30, at Gila River Arena in Glendale.
P!nk is scheduled to perform on Saturday, March 30, at Gila River Arena in Glendale. Courtesy of RCA Records
March is considered one of the busiest months for concerts in the Phoenix area, and rightly so. The spring festival season is in full swing, bands going to South by Southwest make stops in the Valley before heading to Texas, and music legends aplenty have performances scheduled at local venues

Add all of these factors together and it makes for one busy month. For proof, look no further than the following list of the best concerts happening in March. It includes names like P!nk, Billy Joel, Garth Brooks, Rezz, Joe Jackson, Low, Jacob Collier, Mike Doughty, and many more.

There’s also a music festival practically every weekend, including the annual Pot of Gold extravaganza that’s loaded up with hip-hop artists like Lil Wayne, Post Malone, Snoop Dogg, Young Thug, and Ski Mask The Slump God.

Details about each of these shows and events can be found below in our list of the best shows happening in the Valley in March 2019. And for even more live music happening around town, hit up Phoenix New Times' online concert calendar.


Laura Pergolizzi, also known as LP. - COURTESY OF TICKETMASTER
Laura Pergolizzi, also known as LP.
Courtesy of Ticketmaster
LP
Wednesday, March 6
The Van Buren


In early March, acclaimed queer singer/songwriter LP will be making her Arizona debut in support of her recent 2018 album, Heart to Mouth. Armed with smooth pop riffs that highlight her controlled, raspy vocals, LP will be delivering an emotional, no-holds-barred set for Arizona fans who have yet to catch the blunt honesty of her lyrics in person.

Long-Island native Laura Pergolizzi, aka LP, first established herself as a featured guest on a bonus track from Cracker’s 1998 Gentleman's Blues album before adopting her stage name and releasing her 2001 debut studio album, Heart Shaped Scar. In a career spotted with multiple songwriting contributions, LP has worked with the likes of former reality TV star Heidi Montag, Cher, The Veronicas, The Backstreet Boys, Hitomi, Rihanna, Christina Aguilera, and a varied list of interesting pop figures from now and yesteryear.

Although she’s been the “indie darling” of queer and underground communities, Pergolizzi proved herself years ago with critically acclaimed albums like 2002’s Suburban Sprawl and Alcohol and 2014’s Forever For Now before breaking through into the global mainstream with 2016’s Lost On You.

Heart to Mouth features the unapologetic Pergolizzi at her lyrical best. With tracks like “When I’m Over You” and “Recovery, her latest efforts deliver a perkily melancholic production style to her hard-hitting lyrics. LP continues her tradition of relatable-yet-masterful storytelling at the commercial height of a career with success long deserved. Logan Lowrey-Rasmussen

click to enlarge Keenon Daequan Ray Jackson, better known as YG. - COURTESY OF DEF JAM RECORDS
Keenon Daequan Ray Jackson, better known as YG.
Courtesy of Def Jam Records
YG
Wednesday, March 6
Mesa Amphitheatre


Is YG one of the most underrated rappers in the game? On the one hand, he's got the hits, from breakout single "My N*gga" to last year's dope posse cut "Big Bank." On the other, his full-length projects are just as fire: Still Brazy, featuring bona-fide neo-g-funk bops like "Twist My Fingaz" and "Why You Always Hating?," is a solid record. And of course, we definitely know how he feels about the president. So the question remains: Why is he not spoken of in the same breath as fellow new-school SoCal heavyweights like Kendrick and Tyler, the Creator? Maybe it doesn't matter. Get yourself down to Mesa Amphitheatre in March to see a true GOAT in action. Douglas Markowitz

click to enlarge Albert Hammond Jr. has built a brilliant solo career in the shadow of The Strokes. - COURTESY OF CHUFFMEDIA
Albert Hammond Jr. has built a brilliant solo career in the shadow of The Strokes.
Courtesy of Chuffmedia
Albert Hammond Jr.
Thursday, March 7
Crescent Ballroom


Best known as the rhythm guitarist for The Strokes, Albert Hammond Jr. has spent much of the last decade building his own brand. He’s toured the world several times, played international festivals, and released a handful of well-received albums. While he may never fully escape the confines of Strokes-dom (or even dare dream of it), Hammond’s output is the groundwork on which lasting careers are made.

Perhaps it's telling that Hammond was among the first of his bandmates to so go solo. From note one, 2006's Yours to Keep sets Hammond apart from his musical brethren with a decidedly lush sound, infusing the fresh influence of The Beach Boys and John Lennon to skirt away from that early Strokes swagger in favor of endearing, ‘70s-leaning pop (with plenty of kickin' guitar solos packed in). Two years later, in 2008, Hammond returned with ¿Cómo Te Llama?, which expanded his already eclectic approach to further solidify the idea of his viability as a true-blue solo star.

Hammond wouldn't return with another solo LP until 2015's Momentary Masters. Here, he sought to recapture something essential from The Strokes’ early days, a passion and playfulness that exemplified their sound. The record is a flag waving us toward a rose-colored past.

It’s that trajectory that makes Hammond’s fourth record, 2018’s Francis Trouble, all the more intriguing. The LP is named after his unborn twin, Francis, a personal discovery made right around the time he underwent therapeutic "shadow work" to address past traumas. Connecting those kindred emotional experiences, Hammond crafted an album contemplating that precarious ley-line between life and death. Chris Coplan

click to enlarge Isabelle Rezazadeh (a.k.a. Rezz) - BRYAN DELLOSA
Isabelle Rezazadeh (a.k.a. Rezz)
Bryan Dellosa
Rezz
Friday, March 8
Rawhide Event Center


Befitting the name of her most recent album, Canadian-born electronic dance music artist Rezz delivers a certain kind of magic that has a unique sound. The heavy, rolling bass of her tracks give way to buzzing, hypnotic samples that leave her followers, known as The Cult of Rezz, happy and in the mood to dance. And they’ll be doing just that inside the Rawhide Event Center on March 8 when Rezz performs at the cavernous venue. Drezo and i_o will open. Jack Gorman

click to enlarge Billy Joel in concert in 2016. - SLGCKGC/CC BY 2.0/VIA FLICKR
Billy Joel in concert in 2016.
Billy Joel
Saturday, March 9
Chase Field

Are you a fan of America's pastime? How about smooth sing-songwriter piano maestros of the 1970s and '80s? How about both? Well, have we got news for you: Billy Joel is coming to Phoenix for a show at Chase Field on March 9. The performance continues the relationship between Joel, the beloved performer responsible for hits such as "Piano Man" and "Just the Way You Are," and Major League Baseball. In 2010, the singer performed the final concert at the now-demolished Shea Stadium, formerly home to the New York Mets. He also embarked on a four-date tour of baseball stadiums earlier in 2018. This will be his first-ever stadium concert in Arizona. Douglas Markowitz

click to enlarge Punk/New Wave icon Joe Jackson. - COURTESY OF JOE JACKSON
Punk/New Wave icon Joe Jackson.
Courtesy of Joe Jackson
Joe Jackson
Saturday, March 9
Orpheum Theater


After classical training as a multi-instrumentalist at the Royal Academy of Music, Joe Jackson dove into punk and New Wave with the release of Look Sharp! in 1979. He would forever be labeled as "angry" — which was all the rage at the time, along with those white shoes — but his career has spanned more musical genres than Pink Martini can shake a marimba stick at. Earlier this year, he released Fool (his first studio album since 2015’s Fast Forward) that’s an eight-track effort inspired by both “comedy and tragedy.” It's gotten good reviews so far and many of its songs are being performed on Jackson’s 40th-anniversary tour, which comes to the Orpheum Theater in downtown Phoenix on March 9. Libby Molyneaux

click to enlarge Sarah Tudzin of Illuminati Hotties. - COURTESY OF GRANDSTAND MEDIA
Sarah Tudzin of Illuminati Hotties.
Courtesy of Grandstand Media
Flying Burrito Festival 2019
Saturday, March 9
Crescent Ballroom


Burrito and music fans rejoice: The Flying Burrito Festival is returning to downtown Phoenix. After a successful first year, the event will return to Crescent Ballroom and Second Avenue on Saturday, March 9, for an evening of heavenly burritos and awesome tunes. This year's lineup includes 25 bands and musicians will share four stages over the course of the evening, including The Suffers, Illuminati Hotties, and Numb.Er.

Don't worry though, they'll be plenty of local bands joining the party. Dance the mambo with Tucson’s Orkesta Mendoza or jam out to Playboy Manbaby's punk tunes. Other guests from around the country include Bane's World from Long Beach, California, Soft Kill from Portland, Oregon, and Donna Missal from New Jersey.

But let's not forget about the burritos and booze. The event boasts more than 50 burritos and samples from local food joints including Ladera Taverna y Cocina, Dang Brother Pizza and Different Smokes BBQ. Casa Blanco Margarita and the Crescent Ballroom Red Sangria will be serving up beers and cocktails throughout the event. Between music sets, you can even catch some live lucha libre wrestling. Megan Marples


Zomboy
Saturday, March 9
The Van Buren


One thing you learn seeing Zomboy is that he doesn't play around when it comes to trying to crush your body with waves of bass. The man born Joshua Jenkin starts things off intense and it pretty much stays that way the entire time; forget zombies and ordinary monsters, we're talking kaiju-level sonic destruction. It's a noisy, chaotic, wild, but ultimately entertaining experience. Whether you're the type to dance until your feet give out or just want to stand around and simply survive the onslaught, Zomboy will give you a lot to love. Just consider bringing earplugs; your hearing loss won't come back from the dead. Cory Garcia

click to enlarge La Santa Cecilia is scheduled to perform on Sunday, April 29, at Chandler Center for the Arts. - COURTESY OF CRITERIA ENTERTAINMENT
La Santa Cecilia is scheduled to perform on Sunday, April 29, at Chandler Center for the Arts.
Courtesy of Criteria Entertainment
La Santa Cecilia
Sunday, March 10
Chandler Center for the Arts

If there is one band that represents the multicultural mix of the Southwest, it's La Santa Cecilia. Since its Latin Grammy nomination in 2015, the L.A.-born group has been representing its city at major festivals in Texas and New York. They're also picking up the attention of critics, through pieces on NPR's All Things Considered and Latino USA.

Further, their hybrid of Latin, rock, and world music has caught the attention of groups like Cafe Tacuba, Lila Downs, Ozomatli, and Los Lobos, all of whom have had La Santa Cecilia open shows for them in recent years. Anyone who has attended their concerts can attest that lead singer Marisol "La Marisoul" Hernandez has one of the most powerful voices in any city, in any genre. Eddie Cota

click to enlarge The members of Low. - SHELLY MOSMAN
The members of Low.
Shelly Mosman
Low
Monday, March 11
Valley Bar


When Low’s debut album, I Could Live In Hope, came out in 1994, you couldn’t find a more out-of-place release against the backdrop of loud alternative rock hitting the mainstream. Low’s debut album was a study in mood with slow melodies that felt like they could float through the desert landscape. I Could Live In Hope was an album of landscapes that made the listener aware of the space they were occupying while waiting for each strum of the guitar.

Low’s 2018 album Double Negative doesn't contain the sparse desert of sounds of their early albums that defined the "slowcore" genre. It's still atmospheric, but where a sparse strike snare drum and strum of the guitar would have gone is now synths that distort and build and collapse now occupy the spaces where snare strikes and guitar strums would have gone. What does that mean for Low when they perform? Will they create a set with a mix of their oldest compositions and their newest album? You'll have to head out to Valley Bar on March 11 to find out. Julian Hernandez

click to enlarge Deafheaven performs at FORM Arcosanti in 2017. - MICHELLE SASONOV
Deafheaven performs at FORM Arcosanti in 2017.
Michelle Sasonov
Deafheaven and Baroness
Tuesday, March 12
The Van Buren


One of the most controversial, nontraditional, and high-profile groups in the greater metal scene, Deafheaven was recently nominated for a Grammy for Best Metal Performance for the song "Honeycomb," from their 2018 record Ordinary Corrupt Human Love. It's an unexpected honor for the group, who first gained attention for their 2013 record Sunbather and its 2015 followup New Bermuda. Both albums exhibit an intense mix of black metal vocals; shoegaze-influenced production; heavy, major-key guitar riffs; and intense, poetic lyrics that gained attention from mainstream music publications like Pitchfork and earned scorn from black metal traditionalists. Beyond awards or criticism, the music is simply devastating in its impact.

Deafheaven’s currently co-headlining a tour with Baroness, who are also Grammy-noted, having received their own Best Metal Performance nomination in 2017 for the song "Shock Me." Purple in 2015 was the last album from the band, whose sound is constantly changing but is more traditionally geared toward heavy metal than Deafheaven's. Douglas Markowitz

click to enlarge British-born singing star Jacob Collier. - MORGAN HILL-MURPHY
British-born singing star Jacob Collier.
Morgan Hill-Murphy
Jacob Collier
Wednesday, March 13
The Van Buren


The last several years have been a whirlwind for British-born singer and multi-instrumentalist Jacob Collier. In 2011, he was 17 and making split-screen YouTube videos of himself playing a variety of different instruments while covering songs like Stevie Wonder’s “Don’t You Worry ’Bout a Thing.” But the Internet’s an amazing thing, and you never know who you’re reaching. In Collier’s case, one of those people was Quincy Frickin’ Jones.

Fast-forward eight years, and Collier, now 24, has signed to Jones’s management company, and things are moving along quite nicely. He’s released a pair of albums, 2016’s In My Room and last year’s Djesse (Vol. 1), won a pair of Grammy Awards, and has performed around the world using a unique, one-man audio-visual setup that was custom built for him by MIT.

Collier’s sound is all over the place, and trying to ram him into a genre box is futile, but that's what makes him so attractive as an artist. When he says that he listens to anything and everything, this cat really means it.

“As a member of a generation who have been subjected to much over-stimulation, it’s hard to say I fit into any one category,” Collier says. “In some ways, jazz is the broadest umbrella of them all, because it involves different parts of different genres. It’s really hard to say that there’s no folk, no classical or no electronic music. It’s all about balancing out those different sounds. I’m one of those people that’s listened to so much music, I feel like I’ve soaked it all and not rejected anything, so it’s all present there when I’m in my inventing room.” Brett Callwood

click to enlarge The bluegrass boys of the Steep Canyon Rangers. - COURTESY OF MESA ARTS CENTER
The bluegrass boys of the Steep Canyon Rangers.
Courtesy of Mesa Arts Center
Steep Canyon Rangers
Wednesday, March 13
Mesa Arts Center


Approximately 73 million bands have formed at colleges over the years, and the vast majority of them fall into the rock or pop categories, with a few hip-hop or jazz outfits thrown in for good measure. That makes the Steep Canyon Rangers an anomaly — a bluegrass combo formed in the shadow of academia.

Banjoist Graham Sharp, bassist Charles Humphrey III, guitarist Woody Platt, fiddler Nicky Sanders, and mandolinist Mike Guggino were students at the University of North Carolina when they first debuted in 2000 and became one of the genre's most high-profile acts. And they became even more prominent the past several years after hooking up with jokester-turned-banjoist Steve Martin in 2009 and won a Grammy for best bluegrass album in 2013 for their solo album, Nobody Knows You.

While the Rangers won't have Martin in tow when they pay a visit to the Mesa Arts Center in mid-March, they will be performing the sort of upbeat down-home sounds that attracted the legendary actor/comedian in the first place. Michael Roberts

Julio Iglesias
Thursday, March 14
Comerica Theatre


Now that Julio Iglesias has reached the fine, sweet age of 75, you've gotta wonder why he continues to hustle it for grandmothers across the globe. Maybe it's rivalry with his boy, Enrique, that keeps him stalking the stage. Most folks his age would be spending their grand, golden years in any number of ways. But Don Julio isn't most people. You don't survive a car crash and four decades in the biz, record 81 albums, move 300 million units, and spawn eight children by taking it easy. Obviously, Iglesias is a bit of a workaholic. And you can bet he'll be out on the road soliciting panties from grannies right up till the day his tan finally fades forever. S. Pajot
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Phoenix New Times Music Writers