The seven-day stretch from Monday, January 20, to Sunday, January 26, will offer performances from such varied artists and acts as hip-hop duo EarthGang, indie-pop band Saint Motel, alt-rockers Nada Surf, female-fronted punk group Tsunami Bomb, and singer-songwriter Juliana Hatfield.
You can also skank like a ‘90s college kid at The Ska Parade, grove along with electronica ensemble SunSquabi, partake in the fetish fun of the CUPCAKE!, or cowboy up at Valley Fever’s Quarantine country music showcase.
The choice is yours.
Details about each of these shows and music events can be found below. And for even more live music happening around the Valley, hit up Phoenix New Times' online concert calendar.
Steve Gadd BandTuesday, January 21
MIM Music Theater
Steve Gadd has been one of popular music’s most sought-after drummers for decades, appearing on hundreds of recordings and performing live with the likes of Eric Clapton, Paul Simon, Steely Dan, and many other top acts. He’s joined on his current tour, which visits the Musical Instrument Museum on Tuesday night, by a group of fellow all-stars, including trumpet player Walt Fowler, pianist Kevin Hays, and the brilliant electric string duo of bassist Jimmy Johnson and guitarist Michael Landau. Performances will take place at 7 and 9 p.m. Tickets are $28.50 to $48.50. Tom Meek
Nada SurfWednesday, January 22
Nada Surf could have become a forgotten band of the mid-1990s after an enormous hit on their debut album, High/Low. The tongue-in-cheek “Popular” was all over radio and MTV with its Weezer-like charm, but the song was anomalous to the rest of the band’s material. Songs like “Tree House” and “The Plan” were more of a college rock/punk rock hybrid in line with contemporaries such as Buffalo Tom, Superdrag, and Dinosaur Jr.
Nada Surf's third album, 2002's Let Go, ushered them into the kind of career the band members always wanted to have. Thanks to its success, the band have maintained a sustaining career. Catch them in concert on Wednesday night at the Crescent. ROAR will open the show, which begins at 8 p.m. Tickets are $22 to $32. Eric Grubbs
The Booze BombsWednesday, January 22
Starlite Lounge in Glendale
Whether you like it or not, winter visitors have invaded the Valley en masse. Some we can tolerate, others we despise. A good example of the former is German rockabilly foursome The Booze Bombs. Consisting of a quartet of bombastic, hepcat Berliners (who have the rockabilly sound and shtick on lock), the group have made it a regular habit to visit the Valley around this time of year during their annual visit to America, staging performances for local 'billy-loving boys and girls at numerous venues in Phoenix and around Arizona.
This year, the Booze Bombers are kicking off their annual visit to the states with a show at Starlite Lounge in Glendale before heading out across the Southwest on tour. Local bands Whiskey Kiss and Tin Can Screamers will open the night, which gets going at 8 p.m. Admission is free. Benjamin Leatherman
Juliana HatfieldFriday, January 24
Solo or with one of her bands (Blake Babies, Some Girls, and the Juliana Hatfield Three), this pop singer-songwriter's moody MOR jangle-and-coo always anticipated a sort of indie rock styled for performing on late night talk shows. While that's not necessarily a diss, her sweet child-voice requires a bitter trade-off. She's written some of the best lyrics ever written about punishing asshole boys, and one's asshole self, for the stupidity that love inspires.
Best known for the 1995 hit “My Sister” from Only Everything, Hatfield’s lengthy discography also includes such standouts as 2008’s How to Walk Away, where she gently crooned her catchiest songs ever. More recently, she collaborated with Paul Westerberg on the 2016 side project The I Don't Cares and released both original material (2019’s Weird) and covers, including albums filled with the songs of Olivia Newton-John and The Police. You’re likely to hear songs from each of the aforementioned projects when Hatfield performs at the Crescent Ballroom on Friday. The show is at 8 p.m. and tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Peter S. Scholtes
SunSquabiFriday, January 24
Sunbar in Tempe
It shouldn’t seem surprising a band with SunSquabi’s pedigree would come from Boulder, Colorado. Even the band’s name has a kind of stoner mountain vibe to it. Yet, SunSquabi aren't exactly stoner rock, at least not in the sense of bands (Fu Manchu, Kyuss, Eagles of Death Metal, etc.) typically labeled with that moniker. Why? Because the music is a trippy blend of jazz, funk, cosmic disco, classic rock, and hip-hop fused together with looping technology, live improvisation, and a willingness to take chances.
What sets SunSquabi apart is working off a live looping platform that offers bassist/synth player Josh Fairman and guitarist/keyboard player Kevin Donohue the ability to switch instruments midstream, adding musical layers on the fly. The band is scheduled to perform on Friday at Tempe’s Sunbar with an opening set by Balkan Bump. The show starts at 9 p.m. and tickets are $21 to $71. Glenn BurnSilver
EarthGangFriday, January 24
The Van Buren
How do hip-hop duo EarthGang begin a show? By saying they're over the shit of one certain squatter in the White House but definitely not over getting high. And they’re a lot of fun to see live: constantly engaging, and actually funny. They're like your Georgia cousins who introduced you to smoking weed correctly and dared you to get the finest woman you knew. Johnny Venus and Doctur Dot don’t look anything like Atlanta firebrands on the surface, but it takes them no time to get a crowd in the palms of their hands. They’ll take over The Van Buren on Friday, along with openers Mick Jenkins, Jurdan Bryant, and Wynne. Start time is 8 p.m. and tickets are $22.50 to $25. Brandon Caldwell