It’s finally springtime in Augusta and new concert announcements are coming faster than this seemingly endless falling of pollen.
I don’t think I’ve seen so many great musicians hitting the road in years but with declining CD sales from new as well as established acts, touring is now their No. 1 source of revenue.
But as it is with the Masters, it takes plenty of green these days to see top-tier shows. Here’s a quick heads-up on some of the artists that are performing in our parts in April and May.
TODD RUNDGREN: April 6, Variety Playhouse, Atlanta – Rundgren solo concerts are always innovative (a few years back several fortunate audience members were even invited onstage) and filled with numerous aural surprises. Todd usually digs “Marianas Trench Deep” into his vast catalog of work and this show promises to be more of the same.
BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN AND THE E STREET BAND: April 19, Time Warner Arena, Charlotte and April 26, Lakewood Amphitheatre, Atlanta – Springsteen’s marathon outings lately have been more unpredictable and edgier than ever.
The man who wrote and sang Cover Me is fresh off an Australian tour where he covered such unlikely songs including AC/DC’s Highway to Hell, Bee Gee’s Stayin’ Alive, and even Lorde’s massive hit Royals. Gee, what would the late Clarence Clemons have thought of that? High Hopes, his latest disc, is Springsteen’s 18th studio release.
SANTANA: April 26, Chastain Park, Atlanta – Carlos Santana is touring in support of his newie Corozon, which drops May 6. Curiously, it’s the first Latin album of his iconic 46-year career. The disc features guests including Ziggy Marley, Wayne Shorter, Lila Downs, and (gasp) even Gloria Estefan. You can expect to hear some of the new material as well as hit after hit from one of the most revered guitarists on this (or any other) planet.
ERIC CLAPTON: May 3, Chastain Park, Atlanta – This Atlanta gig is the final stop of his U.S. tour and one never knows when it might be his last.
At recent shows, Clapton has been trotting out the hits (I Shot the Sheriff, Pretending, Tears in Heaven), choice vintage covers (Hoochie Coochie Man, Before You Accuse Me) and even several Derek and the Dominos’ tracks (Tell the Truth, Key to the Highway, Nobody Knows When You’re Down and Out). Clapton fans should not miss this one!
WILLIE NELSON AND ALISON KRAUSS WITH UNION STATION: May 18, James Brown Arena, Augusta – Willie’s “on the road again” as always. This show will surely be smokin’ in more ways than one. A fine pairing of artists coming straight to our town for a rare Sunday Night concert at James Brown Arena.
STEVE MILLER BAND, JOURNEY, AND TOWER OF POWER: May 20, Aaron’s Lakewood Amphitheatre – Rock-a-Roni, the real San Francisco treat? A huge chunk o’ talent from the Bay Area invades Atlanta for a concert cooler and more full of hits than old Candlestick Park.
This trifecta of greatness is a phenomenal triple-bill that will have something for everyone.
Looking ahead to June, shows in our area include Jack Johnson, Morrissey, Boston, Elvis Costello, Counting Crows, Bruno Mars and even Katy Perry!