6 Concerts to Catch in Cleveland This Week

The holiday shows just don't stop

click to enlarge Jim Brickman brings the holiday tunes to Cleveland this week - Courtesy Live Nation
Courtesy Live Nation
Jim Brickman brings the holiday tunes to Cleveland this week

THU 12/14

Straight No Chaser — Sleighin' It Tour
Straight No Chaser, a musical group that features the "sound of nine unadulterated human voices coming together to make extraordinary music that is moving people in a fundamental sense," as it's put in a press release, has two RIAA Gold Certified albums, more than 1.5 million concert tickets sold, more than one billion streams on Pandora, and more than one million albums sold worldwide. The male a cappella group's concert begins tonight at 7:30 at the Akron Civic Theatre.
182 South Main St., Akron, 330-253-2488, akroncivic.com.

FRI 12/15

Ohio City Singers

With a series of annual high-spirited end-of-year shows filled with fans who can belt out most of the band’s original 60-song holiday catalogue, the Ohio City Singers have established themselves as a seasonal staple. Comprised of an all-star cast of Northeast Ohio rockers who take time away from their individual projects to embrace the magic of the holidays, the 10-member supergroup performs at 8 tonight at the Rock Hall. Local writer Annie Zaleski will be onsite to sell and sign copies of her new book, This is Christmas, Song by Song.
1100 Rock and Roll Blvd., 216-515-8444, rockhall.com.

SAT 12/16

bar italia
Over the past two years, this band has released two albums, an EP and several singles on Dean Blunt’s World Music label and given festival performances at Pitchfork Music Festival London, by:Larm, OUT.FEST, Le Guess Who? and End of the Road. The band recently released The Twits, its second album of 2023. The group recorded it at a makeshift home studio in Mallorca. It plays at 7 tonight at Mahall's 20 Lanes in Lakewood.
13200 Madison Ave., Lakewood, 216-521-3280, mahalls20lanes.com.

Jim Brickman's A Joyful Christmas
A Northeast Ohio native, singer-pianist Jim Brickman routinely brings his Christmas tours to town in December. This year is no different. Brickman's A Joyful Christmas tour comes to the Hanna Theatre at 2 and 8 p.m. and at 2 p.m. tomorrow.
2067 East 14th St., 216-241-6000, playhousesquare.org.

Gaetano Letizia’s Underworld Blues Band
Veteran blues and jazz guitarist/songwriter, Gaetano (Tom) Letizia teams up with his blues rock quartet for a party celebrating the release of their fourth album. The concert takes place tonight at 6:30 at the Bell Tower Brewing in Kent. Along with leader Letizia on guitars and vocals, the party/concert will feature Cleveland Blues Society Hall of Fame drummer/vocalist Mike D’Elia along with Lenny Gray on bass and special guest on Moss Stanley on Hammond organ. The group will perform all 15 original songs including the title tune, Black Sheep of the Family.
310 Park Ave., Kent, 330-663-2355, belltowerbrewing.com.

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas — By Chip Davis
In various press releases and articles, Mannheim Steamroller’s Chip Davis proudly recalls trying to shop his New Age Christmas concept in the early ’80s and meeting with rejection from all the major labels and distributors. Released in 1984, Mannheim Steamroller Christmas went on to sell some 9 million albums, proving the record label execs wrong (again). The Ohio-born Davis then developed a larger-than-life touring ensemble to bring the synth-heavy tunes to life. Tonight's concert featuring the group takes place at 8 at the State Theatre.
1519 Euclid Ave., 216-241-6000, playhousesquare.org.

WED 12/20

Ryan Humbert Holiday Extravaganza
In previous years, this series, which began way back in 2009, has included a genre-crossing range of holiday music, including big band, rock, bluegrass and more. For this, the final Holiday Extravaganza, the show will return to the main stage of the Akron Civic Theater for an “up-close-and-personal cabaret performance.” A seven-piece jazz ensemble featuring Humbert and his longtime singing partner Emily Bates on vocals will perform. It all begins at 7:30 p.m.
182 South Main St., Akron, 330-253-2488, akroncivic.com.

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Jeff Niesel

Jeff has been covering the Cleveland music scene for more than 20 years now. And on a regular basis, he tries to talk to whatever big acts are coming through town, too. If you're in a band that he needs to hear, email him at [email protected].
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