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SATURDAY JAN 25
18th Annual Tri-C High School Rock Off: Now in its 18th year, the annual Tri-C High School Rock Off pits high school bands against each other for prizes that, in the past, have included recording studio time and the chance to open for a national act. Last year, bands from as far as Erie, Pa., came in to compete. The event kicks off tonight at 6 at House of Blues; several preliminary rounds follow. The top three acts from tonight will make it to the Final Exam, which takes place at House of Blues on Feb. 1. A panel of judges rates the bands at each concert. 3:30 p.m., $10. House of Blues. (Niesel)
Bafflegab/Valley Girls/SHVS: 9 p.m., $5. Grog Shop.
Blue Moon Soup/The MuckleBuck: 10 p.m., $8 ADV, $10 DOS. Beachland Tavern.
John Hardy Band: 9 p.m. Thirsty Cowboy.
Marti Jones and Don Dixon: 8 p.m., $20. Akron Civic Theatre.
The Lennon Orchestra: 8 p.m. Mahall's 20 Lanes.
Mirrors/St. Jayne: 8:30 p.m., $10. Beachland Ballroom.
Mo' Mojo: 9:30 p.m. Brothers Lounge.
John Nemeth and Band: 9 p.m., $15. The Winchester.
School of Rock: 1 p.m., $10. Beachland Ballroom.
Tony Troppe's Demi-Centenarian Celebration: "Half-way Home" Party featuring Rooster Jones/Rachel Roberts & The Ruthless/AHI-NAMA: 8:30 p.m., $5. Musica.
Unsaid Fate: 7 p.m., $7. The Foundry.
Who's Bad: 11 p.m., $12.50 ADV, $15 DOS. House of Blues.
Young Dro: 6 p.m., $15.60. Agora Ballroom.
SUNDAY JAN 26
Big Dummy Xela/Madej Band/James Douglas: 9 p.m., free. Grog Shop.
James Leather Leukemia Benefit: 4 p.m., $20-$25. Mahall's 20 Lanes.
Panic at the Disco/The Colourist: 8 p.m. House of Blues.
School of Rock: 12 p.m., $10. Beachland Ballroom.
Buddy Sullivan Quartet: 7 p.m., $10. Nighttown.
MONDAY JAN 27
Mojo Big Band: 8 p.m. Brothers Lounge.
Velvet Voyage (in the Wine Bar): 8 p.m. Brothers Lounge.
TUESDAY JAN 28
Drunken Sunday/The Real True Stories/Smiley Baldazar: 8:30 p.m., free. Beachland Tavern.
Lyrical Rhythms: Poetry & Soul Open Mic: 9 p.m., free. Grog Shop.
Michael Schenker Group: 7 p.m., $20.80. Agora Ballroom.
WEDNESDAY JAN 29
10 X 3 Hosted by Brent Kirby (in the Wine Bar): 8 p.m. Brothers Lounge.
Cellar Door Music Mixer: 7 p.m. Mahall's 20 Lanes.
Wayne "The Train" Hancock / Church Of The Lazy Bastards/A-Train and the Steamers: Echoing the past while confronting the present, Wayne "The Train" Hancock embodies the classic style of straight-shooting songwriting. He plucks out jangling melodies on the guitar while his lyrics cut right to the chase. His newest album, Ride, is one of his strongest yet. On it, he explores the obstacles of everyday life. On tracks like "Lone Road Home," Hancock ponders existentialism and eternity in the simplest of ways. It's the kind of beauty in simplicity found in the good ol' boys of yesteryear. And yet, there's nothing false or inauthentic found in his music. Ride is an album of songs sung straight from the heart with a host of backing musicians that bring life to these tunes. A force to be reckoned with live, the man knows how to belt out a tune. 8:30 p.m., $15. Grog Shop. (Patrick Stoops)
Tony Monaco/Fareed Haque Organ Trio: 7 p.m., $20. Nighttown.
Palisades/Famous Last Words: 5:30 p.m., $10.40. Agora Ballroom.
JD Samson & MEN/Blisse Anonyon Atu/The Very Knees: A musician, producer and outspoken activist, former Le Tigre member JD Samson finds herself juggling a variety of musical and non-musical issues within her collaboration, JD Samson & MEN. Their newest record, Labor, is a complex musical statement. While on the surface it's fun and danceable, the album focuses on Samson's political passion. On the base level, the music eclectically mixes indie pop and electronic dance music. Vintage-styled drum machines decorate the tracks while deep basslines and synths provide colorful landscapes. Sounding similar to the underground electronic music of the 1980s, busy tracks like the single "All The Way Thru" are complicated yet accessible. Since a young age she's been an outspoken member of the LGBT movement and she and MEN recently released the track "Let Them Out Or Let Me In" in support of the imprisoned Russian punk group, Pussy Riot. Tonight might be fit for dancing or protesting; either way it'll have a great soundtrack. 8 p.m., $12 ADV, $14 DOS. Beachland Tavern. (Stoops)
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