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The King Khan & BBQ Show are scheduled to perform on Thursday, January 9, at Valley Bar.EXPAND
The King Khan & BBQ Show are scheduled to perform on Thursday, January 9, at Valley Bar.
In the Red Records

The 10 Best Concerts in Phoenix This Week

We’re days into 2020, and the Valley’s concert scene is getting into gear.

The next seven nights will feature gigs by big-name performers (rapper Jon Bellion and bedroom indie-pop artist Rex Orange County), unique acts (weirdo rock duo The King Khan & BBQ Show), and living legends (blues kings Guitar Shorty and Walter Trout).

Other notable music events happening from Monday, January 6, to Sunday, January 12, include the popular Full Moon Festival, the latest edition of the Phoenix Rock Lottery, and a David Bowie tribute party.

Details about each of these shows are below. For even more live music happenings around the Valley, hit up Phoenix New Times' online concert calendar.

The Booth BrothersEXPAND
The Booth Brothers
Innovative Management and Consulting

Southwest Gospel Festival 2020

Monday, January 6, to Wednesday, January 8
Mesa Arts Center

They’ll be feeling some serious Tennessee vibes over at Mesa Arts Center as the Southwest Gospel Festival takes to the Ikeda Theater stage for three days. The Booth Brothers, Legacy Five, and Tribute Quartet will bring the music when the festival launches at 6 p.m. on Monday, January 6, and they’ll be joined by motivational speaker Dennis Swanberg.

If you’re not used to hearing gospel, the evening will give you a chance to dip in. If this genre is your thing, you have three days to take it all in. Other artists scheduled to perform at the festival include Phil Cross and Poet Voices, Keepers of the Faith, Legacy Five, The Roberts, Triumphant, The Hoppers, and Liberty Quartet on Tuesday, January 7; and Greater Vision, Legacy Five, The Hoppers, and Liberty Quartet on Wednesday, January 8. Single tickets start at $13. Full event tickets start at $27. Lynn Trimble

The late, great David Bowie.EXPAND
The late, great David Bowie.
Jimmy King

David Bowie Nite: A Starman Disco

Wednesday, January 8
Crescent Ballroom

It’s been four years since David Bowie shuffled off the mortal coil and departed the surly bonds of Earth. And the stars have looked very different ever since. In honor of the legendary musician, actor, and cultural icon, who died in 2016, local DJs Xam Renn and A Claire Slattery will present David Bowie Nite: A Starman Disco at Crescent Ballroom on Wednesday, January 8, which would’ve been his 73rd birthday.

Renn and Slattery will “mourn and pay homage to our beloved Starman” with an evening of Bowie’s best-loved tunes, music videos, and cinematic appearances in Crescent’s main room. Bowie-inspired costumes are encouraged if you feel like dressing up. Put on your red shoes and dance the blues starting at 8 p.m. Admission is $5. Benjamin Leatherman

Alexander O'Connor, better known as Rex Orange County.
Alexander O'Connor, better known as Rex Orange County.
Paradigm Talent Agency

Rex Orange County

Thursday, January 9
The Van Buren

Rex Orange County's bedroom indie pop didn't seem bound for success at first, but the 21-year-old English artist has ascended through the ranks to become a viral sensation over the past four years. His upcoming show at The Van Buren is in support of last year’s Pony, but fans will certainly still be clamoring for older material such as "Sunflower," "Loving Is Easy," and "Best Friend." The show, which starts at 8 p.m., is currently sold out, but tickets are available on the secondary market. James Biagiotti

The King Khan & BBQ Show play "torrid, raw, powerful garage band stuff."EXPAND
The King Khan & BBQ Show play "torrid, raw, powerful garage band stuff."
In the Red Records

The King Khan & BBQ Show

Thursday, January 9
Valley Bar

It’s hard to object to the torrid three-minute Canadian Euro-trash punkabilly songs that Mark Sultan and guitarist King Khan lay down. Khan has been living in Germany since 1999 and was the driving force in King Khan and The Shrines, who put a punk twist on soul music and created a stir on the European underground scene. The duo formed in 2005, and their gut-level rock draws comparisons to everyone from Black Flag to The Black Keys. Albums like 2009’s Invisible Girl and 2015’s Bad News Boys have surprisingly smart songs that catch the earth-quaking rumble of Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis, the earliest U.K. punks, and the 13th Floor Elevators. The result is torrid, raw, powerful garage band stuff that plays well from Hamburg to Houston. They’re scheduled to perform on Thursday night at Valley Bar. Vic Ruggiero opens the 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $22. William Michael Smith

Blues legend Guitar ShortyEXPAND
Blues legend Guitar Shorty

Guitar Shorty

Friday, January 10
The Rhythm Room

He played with some of the best when he was just 17: Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, Otis Rush, B.B. King, and T-Bone Walker. Guitar Shorty (born David Kearney) credits the flamboyant Guitar Slim with inspiring him to incorporate somersaults and flips into his lively stage show. Settling in Seattle, Shorty married Jimi Hendrix's half-sister, Marsha. Hendrix would go AWOL from his military base in '61 and '62 to see Shorty's shows and told him that he started setting his guitar on fire because he couldn't do backflips. Shorty finally made a successful return in '91 with My Way or the Highway, for which he won a Blues Music Award that revitalized his career. He performs at The Rhythm Room starting at 8 p.m. on Friday. Tickets are $14. Chris Parker

Cold Showers visit the Valley this week.EXPAND
Cold Showers visit the Valley this week.
Shannon Cornett

Cold Showers

Friday, January 10
The Rebel Lounge

Yes, the spirit of Joy Division lives on in L.A.'s Cold Showers, but in every best way possible. Their songs are minimal, ferocious, focused, and crackling with power. Jon Weinberg's vocals drift past like smoke in fog. This band are a machine with a million parts moving at once and one you could listen to for hours on end. Cold Showers are scheduled to visit Rebel Lounge on Friday night. Fearing and other special guests open the evening beginning at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance, $13 at the door. Chris Ziegler

Blues guitarist Walter Trout.EXPAND
Blues guitarist Walter Trout.
Austin Hargrave

Walter Trout

Friday, January 10, and Saturday, January 11
The Rhythm Room

Though the term "guitar hero" means less in mainstream music than it did, say, 25 years ago, that doesn't mean the world doesn't have or need them anymore. Clapton and (Jeff) Beck are still active, but who's going to carry on when they join Stevie Ray Vaughan and Rory Gallagher in six-string heaven? Fellows like Walter Trout, that's who. The New Jersey-born guitarist isn't merely some technique-obsessed Captain Speedfingers — he knows blues, having played behind icon John Lee Hooker and as a member of Canned Heat and John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. In his songs, Trout adds personalized tweaks and twists to his solos — he's not living in someone else's past. See Trout (no fish jokes, please) "fiddle" his frets on Friday and Saturday at The Rhythm Room during his two-night stint. Each show starts at 8 p.m. and tickets are $25. Mark Keresman

A scene from the Phoenix Rock Lottery in 2017.
A scene from the Phoenix Rock Lottery in 2017.
Michelle Sasonov

Phoenix Rock Lottery 2020

Saturday, January 11
Crescent Ballroom

This weekend, 25 local musicians come together at Crescent Ballroom to offer an embarrassment of musical riches. Started by Stephen “Psyko Steve” Chilton in 2014, the Phoenix Rock Lottery shakes up the local scene for a good cause. All proceeds go to Rosie's House, a nonprofit that provides music education to underprivileged youth from low-income backgrounds. The format offers music fans a wildly unpredictable experience. Artists from different genres and bands are randomly grouped together into five new bands and have until the end of that day to write and rehearse three new songs (and a cover) to perform that night in front of a live audience. This year’s edition includes such names as Brian Chartrand, Brea Burns, Tatiana Crespo, Tyler Matock, Ark Calkins, and many more. The show is at 8:30 p.m. and admission is $10. Ashley Naftule

One of the many DJs that have performed at the Full Moon Festival.EXPAND
One of the many DJs that have performed at the Full Moon Festival.
Benjamin Leatherman

Full Moon Festival: Wolf Moon

Saturday, January 11
The Pressroom

When promoters of the Full Moon Festival launched the event back in 2016, they had no idea how big it would become. At the time, it was simply a private house party thrown by local artist/musician Jonathan Luther and his then-roommate to celebrate the fact they’d found a place to live. “Our planned celebration actually landed on a full moon,” Luther told Phoenix New Times in 2018. “So, we decided to make it a full moon party.” They invited 50 people to the shindig; more than 200 people showed up. And then things only got bigger from there.

This weekend, the festival will celebrate its fourth anniversary with a big blowout on Saturday night. The event is timed to January’s Wolf Moon and will feature an enormous mix of DJs, bands, visual artists, and other creative endeavors. The DJ lineup will include sets by Blossom, Sean Watson, Lance Fairchild, Tryb, Medicine Mike, TXNY, Vayn, T3, Alex Avila, Macefacekilla, GTJ, and dozens more. Local bands like The Runner Up, The Hourglass Cats, Kuru, No Refills, Joseph Bills, and Lil Seltrah will also perform. Doors open at 8:35 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance, $30 at the door. Benjamin Leatherman

Rapper Jon BellionEXPAND
Rapper Jon Bellion
Live Nation

Jon Bellion

Sunday, January 12
Crescent Ballroom

Jon Bellion cites Kanye West as an influence. He even went as far as dropping out of college to take on music as a career. Just like Yeezus himself, it seems like his determination paid off. Bellion wrote the hook to the Eminem and Rihanna single "The Monster," and ever since then, he's been garnering more and more attention. As a pop artist, Bellion has let the rap influence change up the usual pop artist plan of action by releasing a slew of mixtapes before a proper release. His 2014 tape, The Definition, opens on probably the most recognizable thing Kanye West has ever said (well, on an actual song), "Wait 'till I get my money right," and is filled to the brim with grandiose pop ballads. Bellion’s most recent release is 2018’s Glory Sound Prep, which peaked at No. 15 on the Billboard charts. He’s scheduled to perform on Sunday at the Crescent at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20. H. Drew Blackburn

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