We’re days away from the beginning of the holiday season, and things couldn’t be busier. That’s certainly true of Phoenix’s concert scene, as the next seven nights will offer a ton of notable shows happening.
Highlights include an appearance by the one and only Cher, who’s bringing her Here We Go Again tour to Gila River Arena in Glendale on Saturday night. But if hearing “If I Could Turn Back Time” or a selection of ABBA hits isn't your thing, you can see performances by The Chainsmokers, Pennywise, Morbid Angel, ska legends Skatalites, and the Valley’s own Lindsey Stirling.
What other big concerts are happening from Friday, November 22, to Thursday, November 28? Check out our list of the best shows happening in the Valley this week. And for even more live music happening around the Valley, hit up Phoenix New Times' online concert calendar.
PennywiseFriday, November 22
Marquee Theatre in Tempe
"Bro Hymn," from Pennywise's self-titled, full-length 1992 debut, ranks among the most singular songs in punk history. None of the group's peers could pull off such a staggeringly earnest ode to friendship. Like most powerful schmaltz, in the right setting "Bro Hymn" can melt hearts. When the group used it to cap 1997 Warped Tour sets after bassist Jason Thirsk died, even the jocks in the pit blinked back tears. Musically, Pennywise have changed little since that definitive track. They’re scheduled to perform on Friday night at the Marquee Theatre in Tempe. The Bronx open the 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $25 to $45. Andrew Miller
The SkatalitesFriday, November 22
The Rhythm Room
When legendary Studio One producer Clement "Sir Coxsone" Dodd died in 2004, he left behind a real legacy. Ska, widely considered to be the first truly Jamaican music, was among his most enduring creations. Dodd gathered together the musicians who wound up forming The Skatalites in 1963. They rose to the very top of the scene, and their first hit, "The Guns of Navarone," remains a classic. Although ska soon gave way to rock steady and reggae, the Skatalites preserve a vital part of Jamaican culture.
The Skatalites are scheduled to perform on Friday night at The Rhythm Room. Bandulus and 2Tone Lizard Kings will open the evening, which gets going at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance, $22 at the door. Glenn BurnSilver
Lindsey StirlingSaturday, November 23
Lindsey Stirling, a onetime Valley resident, is the greatest musician in the narrow genre of classical/dubstep/hip-hop/Celtic folk. She’s released multiple albums, selling hundreds of thousands of copies worldwide. Stirling brings excitement to each track and has filled her latest album with lyrics about overcoming her struggles. On stage, Stirling moves with grace and earnest, her bow flying across the strings to provide melodies over electronic backbeats. Her intensity is infectious. And it is impossible not to get caught up in the spectacle. Stirling returns to her hometown on Saturday night for a show at Comerica Theatre, which starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $39.50 to $99.50. Taylor Gilliam
The ChainsmokersSaturday, November 23
Talking Stick Resort Arena
Only at a Chainsmokers concert would you see a reckless, howling, millennial couple suitably drunk just rows in front of a seated family of four trying to make sense of the event. Maybe that’s The Chainsmokers' appeal. Like nursery rhymes, their songs are digestible enough for younger ears that thrive on repetition void of any melodic range, and their desensitized frat-bro lyrics cater to everyone. Factor in enough pyro for a small-town Independence Day celebration (an alternate name for the act could have been The Fire Marshal Whisperers) and thunderous rattling to, of course, make the bass drop, and the teenagers in the house probably feel like they've made it into a club. See if you have the same experience when The Chainsmokers invade Talking Stick Resort Arena with 5 Seconds of Summer and Lennon Stella. The show starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $44.75 to $104.75. John Amar
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CherSaturday, November 23,
Gila River Arena in Glendale
The singer, actress, and outspoken anti-Trumper has a style that seems dubious at first, but suddenly and surprisingly becomes cool. Born Cherilyn Sarkisian, she’s been starting music and fashion trends for decades. Consider her stylish and scandalous attire over the years or her use of the questionably acceptable Auto-Tune. There’s also her role as a rom-com star and her rampant tweeting. At 72, Cher is still a relevant pop icon. In just the last year, she accepted a Kennedy Center Honors Award, starred in movies, and debuted a Broadway musical about herself. Cher radiates a superhuman magnetism that somehow leaves room for vulnerability, even if you know deep down nothing can really hurt her. Cher’s concert at Gila River Arena on Saturday night starts at 8 p.m. and Nile Rodgers and CHIC open. Tickets are $25 to $495. Liz Tracy
The Get Up KidsSunday, November 24
Seminal emo-rock act The Get Up Kids always have had a knack for observing relationship drama and channeling it into angsty music resonating most deeply with the teenage demographic. Now that the band are well past their ’90s heyday and their members are entering middle age, vocalist Matt Pryor is still using other people’s relationships as musical inspiration. “I’m 42 years old, and if I wrote songs with the same content as when I was 18, that would make me a douchebag,” he says. “These themes of love and loss and longing don’t change as you get older. The subject matter might be different, but it’s not like you turn 40 and you don’t feel heartbreak anymore.” The result is Problems, their first full-length effort since 2011’s There Are Rules. And while many things about The Get Up Kids have changed, their music still has the same emotional core. Their Crescent Ballroom show on Sunday night starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $24 and Kevin Devine and the Whiffs will open. Howard Hardee
Morbid AngelTuesday, November 26
Club Red in Mesa
Morbid Angel's debut album, 1989's nightmarish Altars of Madness, proved very influential. Trey Azagthoth's aggressive, slashing guitar style and technical yet creative leads can be heard in the sonic DNA of countless death metal and thrash bands that followed in their wake. Morbid Angel enjoyed some breakthrough commercial success with 1993's Covenant. They’re scheduled to perform on Tuesday, November 26, at Club Red in Mesa. Watain and Incantation open the evening, which starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $30 to $35. Tom Murphy
Big Sandy and His Fly-Rite BoysWednesday, November 27
The Rhythm Room
Big Sandy – and believe us, he is a big guy, but all together affable – and his band are something of the missing link between classic country and rockabilly. Their sound encompasses everything from Hank Williams to Buck Owens, Buddy Holly to Elvis, Roy Orbison to Duane Eddy, and Gene Vincent to Link Wray. It's quite a mix, but one that doesn't feel forced or stolen. The band are truly passionate about what they do. Catch them live at the Rhythm Room on Wednesday, November 27. Brea Burns and the Boleros and the Joe Baker Trio open the 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $12 to $15. Glenn BurnSiliver
Thank You ScientistWednesday, November 27
Pub Rock Live in Scottsdale
Thank You Scientist are one of the more unique acts in rock, as they consist of seven musicians playing instruments ranging from a shamisen and sitar to a theremin. They’re considered a mix of progressive rock, post-hardcore, and jazz fusion, but listening to their music, you'd probably agree that they transcend those labels.
Make no mistake, the somewhat odd instrumentation that they utilize doesn't seem as though it would draw much attention from metal fans, but it does. And Thank You Scientist are just as popular with the indie types as well. You might encounter both crowds during the band's show at Pub Rock Live in Scottsdale on Wednesday, November 27. The Tea Club and Bent Knee will open. The show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 to $22. Austin Paetow
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One More Time: A Tribute to Daft PunkWednesday, November 27
The Van Buren
Is there room for two Daft Punks in the world? 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 keep the 2007 era alive more than a decade later in 2019, delivering what will one day be called the “classic” Daft Punk live experience.
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. See for yourself when One More Time performs on Thanksgiving eve at The Van Buren. The show starts at 9 p.m. and tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door. Chris Ziegler