[image-1]

ROCK ‘N’ ROLL | David Byrne: American Utopia Tour
w/ Tune-Yards
Sun. Sept. 23
7:30 p.m.
$74-$144 (Plus $10 cash-only parking)
North Charleston Performing Arts Center

David Byrne’s current tour showcases everything fans have ever loved about the man. From his eye for jaw-droppingly perfect production (recall if you will the 1986 film True Stories he directed and starred in) to the distinctive voice that made the Talking Heads one of the best and most unique melody makers in the history of rock ‘n’ roll, Byrne has never been better. The Talking Heads formed in 1975, and Byrne still boggles the mind with a triumphant solo release this year, American Utopia, during which he addresses the rather dark current state of the world while also offering glimmers of hope throughout. As for the concert, get ready for a performance for the ages, complete with a remarkably choreographed crew, socially conscious songs (including one in which he and the audience scream the name of North Charleston’s fallen Walter Scott), and a visual playground that will leave you in complete and utter awe. —Kelly Rae Smith SUNDAY

[image-3]

NEW ORLEANS BRASS | Rebirth Brass Band
w/ Aztec Sun
Thurs. Sept. 20
9 p.m.
$20
Pour House

The New Orleans octet Rebirth Brass Band has been around for more than three decades, but you’d never know it from the amount of energy the band puts into their blend of infectiously danceable second-line march music with rock, rap, reggae, and more. The group clearly loves what they do, and never let it be said that they don’t like to work a lot. Over their 35-year career, the band has not only put out 19 of their own albums, appeared on releases by the Band’s Robbie Robertson, Ani DiFranco, and Trombone Shorty, and landed a track on a Fats Domino tribute album, but they also created music for the acclaimed HBO show Treme. But the best place to experience Rebirth is onstage, where the band, still led by bass-drummer Keith Frazier after all these years, lays down the jazz-funk-soul with palpable joy and overwhelming skill. Along with the Dirty Dozen, of course, Rebirth is the real down-home New Orleans deal. —Vincent Harris THURSDAY

[image-2]

ROOTS-AMERICANA | Lucero
w/ Brent Cowles
8:30 p.m.
$20/adv., $25/door
Pour House

Lucero has spent a couple of decades refining their sound, focusing their raw-boned mix of rock grit and country twang around the heart-tugging, here-goes-nothing growl of singer/songwriter Ben Nichols. But despite the strength of past albums like 2013’s Women & Work and 2015’s stunning All A Man Should Do, their new album, Among the Ghosts, might be their best work yet. With Grammy Award-winning engineer/producer Matt Ross-Spang (Jason Isbell, Margo Price) behind the boards, Nichols has created his most immediate set of songs, chronicling the small victories and big regrets of hard-bitten lovers and dreamers with a near-cinematic songwriting scope. Call it alt-country, or perhaps more accurately, Southern gothic, but regardless of the label, the band’s intuitive feel for Nichols hard-bitten lyrics has never been sharper, and Ross-Spang brings out a newly expansive roots-Americana sound in the band that increases their musical scope more than ever. —Vincent Harris TUESDAY

[image-4]

TRIBUTE | Luther Tribute Tour with Danny Clay
w/ Seven and his tribute to Teddy P
Sun. Sept. 23
7 p.m.
$30-$300
Exquis Event Center

Where’s the love for Luther Vandross and Teddy Pendergrass, for God’s sake? With all of these tributes going around to deceased (and inarguably great) soul singers like Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson, or James Brown, it seems a shame that we don’t see more people paying homage to two of the best and most commercially successful R&B love men of their era. Few people could sing about romance (or sex) with the gruff, seductive skill of Pendergrass, who made women swoon in the 1970s and ’80s with hits like “Close The Door” and “Turn Off The Lights.” And Vandross was quite simply one of the best soul singers of his era, going platinum like you and I breathe and delivering favorites like “A House is Not a Home,” “Dance With My Father,” and “Any Love” with titanic skill. Perhaps this two-act show, opening up with Seven’s tribute to Teddy P. and climaxing, if you will, with Danny Clay’s uncannily accurate homage to Vandross, will help to right an R&B injustice. —Vincent Harris SUNDAY

[image-5]

TRIBUTE | The Greatest Love of All: A Tribute to Whitney Houston
w/ Charlton Singleton, Quiana Parler & Friends
Fri. Sept. 21
8 p.m.
$17-$22
Charleston Music Hall

Even when she was singing pure-pop ballads, the late Whitney Houston had a devastatingly powerful voice-and a vocal force of nature like her should certainly take a first-rate singer to pay tribute. In terms of skill and résumé, vocalist Quiana Parler fits the bill. The singer for Charleston Jazz Orchestra conductor and artistic director for Charlton Singleton’s band Ranky Tanky, Parler has performed with Kelly Clarkson, Clay Aiken, Ruben Studdard, Miranda Lambert, and Keith Sweat, among others, and she’s played places like Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall. Singleton and Parler are a good fit for this Houston tribute, and classic hits like “How Will I Know,” “I’m Your Baby Tonight,” “The Greatest Love Of All,” and, yes, “I Will Always Love You” are sure to be on the agenda. It’s a great opportunity to revisit the catalog of one of the most-awarded and best-selling artists of all time. —Vincent Harris FRIDAY