Big Summer Classic

With String Cheese Incident, Keller Williams, Umphree's McGee, and Michael Franti and Spearhead. Sunday, July 17, at Blossom.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
The Zooma Tour -- this summer's traveling equivalent of the gigantic, jam-friendly Bonnaroo fest in Tennessee -- was canceled before it got off the ground, leaving legions of hacky-sack aficionados bumming about the first non-Phishy summer in years. For many of those fans, the Big Summer Classic tour can fill at least some of that void, offering sets from a number of both big-ticket and small club bands.

The headliner, String Cheese Incident, is back, promoting a new album, One Step Closer, which returns to the mandolin-happy country-rock arrangements that the band decided to forgo on the disappointing electronica excursion Untying the Not.

Elsewhere, the Big Summer Classic boasts some of the more exciting artists in the jam-band nation: Keller Williams, who creates full-band arrangements with just an acoustic guitar and sampler; Umphree's McGee, the jam-band answer to the nü-prog trend; and Michael Franti and Spearhead, whose high-energy shows always overshadow the bandleader's predilection for simple politics. Though none of these bands have the cachet of Trey Anastasio (who was supposed to headline Zooma), they've all got chops and cult followings -- the perfect combo for a classic mindless summer day.

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