The Current's 10th Anniversary Celebration Is Rather Large

Categories: Just Announced
Photo by Erik Hess
Atmosphere will headline the second night of the Current's 10th Anniversary Concerts at First Avenue.

It has now been just about a decade since 89.3 the Current hit the Twin Cities airwaves. To celebrate, the public radio station's yearly birthday festivities are now officially too big for their previous britches.

In past years, the two-night birthday bash at First Avenue has been a fixture each mid-January, but this time it's a 10-day marathon of events. The itinerary, including lineups for both nights in the mainroom, is below.

See also:
89.3 the Current: An oral history

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Billy Joel Must Really Like Big Press Conferences

Categories: Just Announced
Photo by Steve Cohen from Billy Joel and Elton John's Xcel show in 2009.
The piano man strikes again.
Today, the dedicated music press made their way to Target Center to bathe in the splendor of a staged event for them to cover. A surprise guest waited behind the curtain, but something about this setup felt familiar. The speculation was almost identical to... an event much like this one staged over at the Xcel in St. Paul five years ago.

As some folks might recall, it was not for U2, the Rolling Stones, or even a Prince concert. It was Billy Joel (with Elton John). And today was no different.

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Northern Invasion Festival Brings Hard Rock to Somerset Amphitheater

Categories: Just Announced
Photo courtesy of Northern Invasion
The masked bandits of hard rock Slipknot are riding through again!

The inaugural Northern Invasion Festival will bring together an assortment of noise, pyro, and paint-peeling rock to the Somerset Amphitheater in May.

The rock and camping fest marks the return of Slipknot, who headlined their own Knotfest at the Wisconsin outdoor grounds a couple years ago. Joining them on the bill are Five Finger Death Punch, Three Days Grace, the Pretty Reckless, and many more.

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Sonny Knight & the Lakers to Record Live Album at the Dakota

Photo By Mark N. Kartarik

There's no question that Sonny Knight & the Lakers have had a great 2014. From gracing City Pages' cover to landing a spot on our Picked to Click poll, Knight and his relentlessly funky big band have electrified the local scene of late.

They are set to record a live album over the course of their four upcoming performances at the Dakota on December 18 and 19. The results will go straight to two-track tape and be released on double LP via Secret Stash Records.

Gimme Noise spoke to the Lakers' drummer (and Secret Stash Records founder) Eric Foss about how the recording process is going to work, the dance party planned for the final set, and which songs will be on the live LP.

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Drone Not Drones Unveils 28-Hour Drone Lineup for 2015

Categories: Just Announced
Photo by Mark N. Kartarik
Buttons from the last Drone Not Drones event

The Twin Cities music community will coalesce with the power of drone for another squalling appeal for a more peaceful, tolerant world in January. Yes, the Drone Not Drones collective has organized another 28-hour drone concert.

Much like the event held earlier this year at the Cedar Cultural Center, Duluth's Low lead a growing roster of acts known for their prowess creating the humming, slowly developing soundscapes as well as a wealth of artists traveling far outside expected genre boundaries.

See also:
Luke Heiken is the Mind Behind Drone Not Drones

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Transmission Dance Party Goes Live: Lineup

Categories: Just Announced
Photo by Adam Degross
DJ Jake Rudh is turning the Transmission dance night into a live event.

November tends to be a very busy month for local art-rockers BNLX, and 2014 is no different. For the past couple of years, they've set up at Cause for a weekend to host a Fest featuring themselves and lots of their talented friends. With Cause still sorting its situation out, the group has teamed up with pal DJ Jake Rudh for a show at the Varsity Theater on November 29.

Live Transmission combines the brand of Rudh's long-running New Wave and alternative dance party with bands that employ similarly adventurous artistry. Plus, the night will double as a release show for BNLX's ninth EP, Flextime.

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Taylor Swift 2015 U.S. Tour Dates -- St. Paul in September

Categories: Just Announced
Big Machine Label Group
Taylor Swift just shook out an extensive tour plan for next year in support of her latest album, 1989. The record, which is her most pop-oriented (and most-thinkpieced) to date, sold 1.3 million copies in its first week on shelves. (Even if "Welcome to New York" is questionable.)

In other words, Tay Tay is big business -- bigger than she's ever been -- and this tour will have to do much to top the spectacle of Red's run, which hit St. Paul in 2013. She'll be back at the Xcel for two shows next year.

See also:
Review: Taylor Swift at Xcel Energy Center, 9/7/13

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One Direction 2015 U.S. Tour Dates -- TCF Stadium in July

Categories: Just Announced
Publicity Photo
One Direction can not be contained! By a roof, anyhow. The heartthrob lads just announced plans for a late-summer run in 2015, and they've graduated to stadiums.

Given the scream quotient at these events, open air is the best possible scenario for the truckload of voices ripping apart while Harry Styles asserts himself. 1D last hit the Twin Cities for an official show last year at Target Center. When they return, the event could attract twice as many attendees and break some records at TCF Stadium -- which has only hosted a scant few full-scale concerts.

See also:
Eight Things I Learned at a One Direction Show

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Keith Ellison's Get Out the Vote Concert 2014 Lineup

Categories: Just Announced
Photo by Nick Wosika
Sims leads a packed lineup for the congressman's Get Out the Vote show.
Local congressman Keith Ellison -- a noted Prince and Woody Guthrie fan -- is taking his message to the club this election season. Just like he did in 2012, he's assembled a fundraiser aimed directly at his youthful constituents.

Ahead of Election Day, First Avenue will stage a night of hip-hop (and Gabriel Douglas) this November hosted by Ellison.   More »

See Spooky Black and the Stand4rd Perform -- Finally!

Categories: Just Announced
Thumbnail image for The_Stand4rd.jpg
Photo Courtesy of Basil Presents
The Standard, from left: Psymun, Spooky Black, Bobby Raps, and Allan Kingdom

Spooky Black, the young and mysterious "Dark R&B" proprietor from St. Paul, has netted fans from music blogs local and beyond (and some vocal detractors) over the past few months. Credit a suite of solo tracks on Black Silk, the Leaving EP, and a stream of collaborations with the Stand4rd, a group featuring Allan Kingdom, Bobby Raps, and producer Psymun.

What Spooky Black's voice and accompanying imagery provide is a mainline to personal reflection -- our own fortress of solitude in song. Be it youth, be it a love lost, be it the coldest day we can remember, be it the day when everything came together, this is music than can trigger a reaction that sticks around. So far, that's mostly been a private experience. There's now an upcoming tour planned, so listeners can finally leave the bedroom and find out who else has been connecting privately with the material.

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