The Supersonic Vibes of Percussion Virtuoso Mike Dillon
You may not know Mike Dillon by name, but flip through your LPs, and you’re bound to find his name in the production credits somewhere. That’s his dazzling vibraphone and tabla work you hear on Primus’s Primus & the Chocolate Factory; he’s been Ani DiFranco’s go-to guy for percussion for over a decade; he’s toured in support of Fishbone, Galactic, and Clutch, and just last month, he sat in with moe. during their set at Jam Cruise 18. Now, you can catch Mike D.’s wizardry twice at Rockwood Music Hall on February 14, with an early and late show that are guaranteed to be off the hook. For tickets and more information on Mike Dillon, please visit mikedillonvibes.com
All the Way From Louisiana Is Motel Radio
The most intricately crafted, sonically interesting, and ever-changing take on Americana can be found at a Motel Radio concert. The five piece band hailing from NOLA have come a long way from their college bar performances and Soundcloud days, growing up in every way, shape, and form before the eyes of the industry. Their music has become a unique style of beachy, southern-influenced indie rock chic, with lyrics that have grown to have the depth of seventies grassroots bands and the truthful narrative of any late-nineties pop punk group. Motel Radio are themselves, through and through, even if that means bettering themselves and their sound over time. If you want a glimpse into that sound and its originality, head to The Mercury Lounge on Feb. 16. Tickets can be found at ticketfly.com.
—Debra Kate Schafer
Gramercy Theatre Welcomes UK’s Metalcore Export While She Sleeps
Straight out of Sheffield, England are While She Sleeps, the metalcore quintet embarking on their first ever North American tour, which begins this month and extends into March. Their latest album, So What?, was released through Seek and Destroy/Spinefarm Records in March of 2019, and there’s no doubt that While She Sleeps will be bringing that album’s punishing rhythms, intense vocals, and emotional lyricism to the Gramercy Theatre on February 19. Two visual-rollercoaster music videos have been made for So What? standouts “HAUNT ME” and “ANTI-SOCIAL,” and you can check them out now on the band’s YouTube channel. For tickets to the Gramercy gig and more on While She Sleeps, visit: facebook.com/whileshesleeps.
The Beloved Belter: Brian McKnight
Whether you think the Grammy Awards are rigged or not, you can’t disregard the fact that being nominated for 16 is no small feat. Brian McKnight, despite not having won any of the Grammys he has been nominated for over the course of his career, has never truly lost. This singer-songwriter’s falsetto is unmatched. His range, talent, and belting voice is practically unmatched in the music industry. For over 30 years, McKnight has been a coveted R&B artist that has released tens of über-successful albums and singles, selling more than 25 million copies worldwide. If you haven’t been to a concert yet in 2020, this is the one you need to go to. The breathtaking performer that McKnight is will make sure that your year–and your Valentine’s Day—start off right! Get your tickets to his BergenPAC show on Feb. 13 now by heading to bergenpac.org.
All-Star B.B. King Tribute Set to Rock the Cap in Port Chester
Peter Shapiro and the good folks at the Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, NY have put together what is sure to be two firework-filled evenings of some of the best blues musicians ever assembled, all coming together to pay tribute to the great B.B. King. On February 16, Buddy Guy, Warren Haynes, Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi, and Jimmie Vaugh are only just a taste of the star-studded program, while the next evening, February 17, Ann Wilson of Heart, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Little Steven, Southside Johnny, and Robert Randolph also bring their love for the late blues master to the stage. Add bassist extraordinaire Pino Palladino (John Mayer, The Who) to the house band, under the direction of Musical Director Steve Jordan, plus a host of other special guests, and what you get is one smokin’ hot, blues-fueled weekend at the Cap. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com
The Valentine Concert
Looking for another Valentine’s Day concert option? Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City has just the show for you on Feb. 15, just one day after the holiday itself! Featuring Johnny Gill, Next, Keke Wyatt, Stokley from Mint Condition is The Valentines Concert, a hip-hop and R&B take on everything good, pure, and musical about Valentine’s Day. This lineup is sure to put on hour after hour of fun, immersive performances that showcase their individual talents and styles, but making sure to fill the arena with love and appreciation. It is going to be Valentine’s Day weekend, after all! For tickets and more information on the event, visit boardwalkhall.com.