The week's 26 best concerts: Dec. 7-13


Lizzo Atlantic Records

Rounding up the week's best shows in the Twin Cities.

  • HARDCORE CRAYONS Dec. 7, 8:00 p.m. at Triple Rock Social Club
  • JAKE JONES AND FRIENDS Dec. 7, 7:00 p.m. at 7th St. Entry
  • ERIK KOSKINEN Dec. 7, 9:30 p.m. at Icehouse

Tim Warfield’s Jazzy Christmas
Dakota Jazz Club, Thursday 12.8
If you think this might be a light jazz soirée to casually usher in the holidays, think again. Tenor/soprano saxophonist Tim Warfield is an accomplished player with a rich, distinctive tone, deep veins of blues and soul, an innate sense of swing, and a fervid imagination. Add a lineup that includes heavy hitters Stefon Harris on vibes and Cyrus Chestnut on piano, plus lesser-known standouts Clarence Penn (drums), Jason Palmer (trumpet), Eric Wheeler (bass), and Joanna Pascale (vocals), and you get traditional Christmas warmth wrapped in a context of smart, inventive jazz. Thursday’s repertoire will be likely drawn from 2012’s Jazzy Christmas album, on which Christmas standards like “Joy to the World” and “Silent Night” are launching pads for inspired improvs that probe deep into unexplored territory without losing sight of the mistletoe. 7 & 9 p.m. $20-$40. 1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis; 612-332-5299. -- Rick Mason

  • THE 37TH ANNUAL JOHN LENNON TRIBUTE Dec. 8, 7:00 p.m. at First Avenue
  • DEAD HORSES Dec. 8, 7:00 p.m. at Turf Club
  • JEFFREY FOUCAULT Dec. 8, 7:00 p.m. at The Cedar Cultural Center

Get Together 7 feat. Frankie Bones
First Avenue, Friday, 12.9
There’s a very ravey pre-Christmas party going down at First Avenue. We’re, of course, talking about Get Together, the semi-regular DJ night that began in 2013. Headlining this iteration is DJ Frankie Bones, who helped familiarize New York City with rave culture in the ’80s and ’90s. The underground trailblazer championed the PLUR (peace, love, unity, and respect) philosophy, which encourages clubbing communities to aspire to higher ideals. Get Together 7 will feature a special birthday set from Woody McBride (aka DJ ESP), the pioneering Midwest DJ who was the subject of a City Pages cover story in August. Also performing are DJs Fresko, Amy Pickett, Casey Borchert, and Cloudy Kid. Host Bobby Kahn will present his So You Think You Kahn Dance Dance? class. 18+. 8 p.m. $10-$12. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. -- Jay Boller

  • A CHRISTMAS CELEBRATION WITH THE STEELES Dec. 9, 7:30 p.m. at Fitzgerald Theater
  • THE BLENDERS: 19TH ANNUAL HOLIDAY SOUL TOUR Dec. 9, 8:00 p.m. at Pantages Theatre
  • DUSTIN THOMAS Dec. 9, 8:00 p.m. at 7th St. Entry

Twin Cities Jazz Sampler Release Party
The Black Dog Cafe, Saturday 12.10
This triple-header at the Black Dog will celebrate the release of Twin Cities Jazz Sampler Vol. 2, a compilation of 14 tunes pulled from the artistically thriving local jazz community. Assembled by local trumpeter, bandleader, impresario, and all-around jazz dynamo Steve Kenny, the disc is a fair summation of the state of the broad, deep, and notably multi-generational Twin Cities jazz scene. Kicking things off will be Kenny’s own Illicit Sextet, whose Sampler track “Early Ely” is a hard-driving bop original by bassist Tom Pieper. Kenny, on “flumpet,” and tenor saxophonist Paul Harper impressively lead the charge. Next up will be drummer Cory Healey’s Beautiful Sunshine Band, which typically tackles a mix of bop to free jazz mingled with lashings of metallic rock. Rounding out the evening will be post-bop dynamos Mississippi, an ensemble including Peruvian guitarist Andrés Prado — an erstwhile Twin Citian who’s now a frequent visitor — plus blazing saxophonist Pete Whitman and pianist David Schimke. The remainder of the new Sampler runs the gamut from the idiosyncratic Atlantis Quartet to the funk-infused trio King Fletcher Woods and beyond. 7 p.m. Free. 308 E. Prince St., St. Paul; 651-228-9274. -- Rick Mason

First Avenue, Saturday-Sunday 12.10 & 12.11
Though “rapper” is the word most frequently used to sum up Lizzo, she’s truly un-categorizable, versatile and unconstrained like Missy Elliott and Azealia Banks. Originally from Detroit and Houston, she’s been based in Minneapolis since 2011, and locals are happy to claim her as the city’s brightest hope for the future. She’s also the Twin Cities artist most recently signed to a major label, Atlantic Records, which issued her Ricky Reed-produced EP from October, Coconut Oil. The EP’s clear highlight is “Good as Hell,” the slick, joyous empowerment anthem that was her contribution to Barbershop: The Next Cut, and there’s still a chance that the song will become a certified Billboard Hot 100 hit. Still, the remainder of the release, a 19-minute hook-fest, shouldn’t be overlooked. Other standouts include “Phone,” the minimal earworm that best showcases Lizzo’s sense of humor, and “Deep,” a sweeping, polychrome, and club-ready banger. With DJ Sophia Eris and 2016 City Pages Picked to Click finalist Dizzy Fae. 18+. 8 p.m. Saturday (sold out). 7 p.m. Sunday ($20). 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. -- Michael Madden

  • 9TH ANNUAL DOSH & FRIENDS Dec. 10, 7:00 p.m. at The Cedar Cultural Center
  • R. KELLY: 12 NIGHTS OF CHRISTMAS Dec. 10, 8:00 p.m. at Orpheum Theatre
  • MARIN/MARIN Dec. 11, 12:30 p.m. at The Warming House
  • TCGMC'S GAY HOLIDAY SPECTACULAR Dec. 11, 2:00 p.m. at Ted Mann Concert Hall
  • MELODIME Dec. 11, 7:00 p.m. at Turf Club
  • TOO SHORT Dec. 12, 7:00 p.m. at Amsterdam Bar and Hall
  • SHAUN JOHNSON BIG BAND EXPERIENCE Dec. 12, 7:30 p.m. at Ames Center
  • KEEGAN WHITE Dec. 12, 7:30 p.m. at 7th St. Entry

J. Plaza and Nazeem & Spencer Joles
7th St. Entry, Tuesday 12.13
Presented by Minneapolis’ Institute of Production and Recording (IPR) and Rhymesayers, this free event at 7th St. Entry features some of the freshest hip-hop talent in Minneapolis. Twenty-six-year-old J. Plaza is arguably the hottest Minnesota rapper without a full-length project to his name. He’s mostly built his buzz with an array of songs uploaded to SoundCloud, including the raging “Fuck It” and the space-trap banger “Ego” (featuring fellow locals Tha Rift and Daddy Dinero). Meanwhile, South Side duo Nazeem & Spencer Joles have put out a project, and a great one at that: March’s sonically diverse The Album. It’s further evidence that they could’ve arrived at any point in the last 20 years and still found a spot near the forefront of Twin Cities music. “Benjis” and “Oh I Neva” distinctly belong to the current trap rap era, while boom bap-influenced collabs like “Crossfire” (featuring Nazeem’s dad, Muja Messiah) and “Fallen Souls” (with P.O.S) could’ve been regional hits in the ’90s or earlier in the ’00s. Rounding out the lineup is the less established but promising IPR group Creeps & Geeks. 18+. 9 p.m. Free. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. -- Michael Madden 

  • REINA DEL CID Dec. 13, 9:00 p.m. at Icehouse
  • JUDY CARMICHAEL Dec. 13, 7:00 p.m. at Crooners Lounge & Supper Club
  • RICKY SKAGGS AND KENTUCKY THUNDER Dec. 13, 9:00 p.m. at Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant