by Albert Rodriguez -
SGN A&E Writer
What's not to love about Rob Thomas? He's sexy, talented, and a longtime supporter of the LGBT community. Just last week, the Matchbox 20 frontman posted his reaction to Ireland's historic same-sex marriage vote on Twitter, saying 'Congrats to my friends in Ireland for being the first country in the world to enshrine marriage equality into their constitution!' With #1 albums and singles under his belt, plus two Grammy wins, Thomas is a successful solo artist as well and is set to release his third recording, The Great Unknown, this summer. He's promoting the CD with a full tour that includes a Seattle date on June 29 at the Paramount Theatre. I participated in a conference call with Thomas, in which he spoke with several journalists from around the country by phone; I only got to ask him a couple of questions, but overall there was a lot of good information shared about the tour, album, and his career. Look for the interview in our special Pride issue, on June 26. For tickets to see Rob Thomas in person, priced between $45 and $65, visit livenation.com.
Summer Nights = Summer Concerts. From the Chateau Ste. Winery to Woodland Park Zoo to the streets on Capitol Hill, tis' the season for outdoor live music. Among the shows to see out in the open this summer are 'Concerts at the Mural,' taking place under the Space Needle at the Mural Amphitheatre. Co-sponsored by KEXP, which relocated to Seattle Center recently, the indie rock-themed series kicks off August 7 with Other Lives, The Shivas, and Tangerine, then continues with Natasha Kmeto, Shaprece, and Manatee Commune on August 14. The final two shows feature The Coup, Pillar Point, and a third act TBA on August 21, and Country Lips, Evening Bell, and a mystery headliner on August 28. All shows are free and seating is on a first-come basis; guests are welcome to bring blankets, folding chairs, and their own food or snacks, but no large coolers/ice chests, alcohol, or pets will be allowed. For more information, go to KEXP.org or seattlecenter.com.
Turn that 'fantasy' into reality and see Mariah Carey in person, when she performs 20 shows between now and next year in Las Vegas. The pop diva has already announced residency dates at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace for July 2015 and February/March 2016, where her live production 'Mariah #1 to Infinity' will showcase some of the biggest hits of her catalog, such as 'Vision of Love,' 'Emotions,' 'Hero,' 'We Belong Together,' 'Honey,' 'Dreamlover,' 'Someday,' 'Heartbreaker,' 'Always Be My Baby,' and 'Fantasy.' The show features a six-piece band, three backup vocalists, two DJs, and ten dancers. In total, 18 songs are included in the concert. Dates for 'Mariah #1 to Infinity' are July (2015): 8, 11, 12, 15, 18, 19, 22, 25, and 26, February (2016): 2, 5, 6, 10, 13, 14, 17, 20, and 21, and March (2016): 23 and 24. For tickets, information, and room rates, plus special packages, go to caesarspalace.com.
If you missed Neon Tree's fun, bouncy set at last year's Bumbershoot Festival, here's another chance to see them live. The Utah-based act is returning to the Emerald City for a June 6 performance at The Showbox Market, continuing to promote 2014's Pop Psychology album, which produced the hit single 'Sleeping with a Friend.' But the group is more widely known for a pair of its previous chart toppers, 'Animal' and 'Everybody Talks;' a new single has just been released, titled 'Songs I Can't Listen To.' Neon Trees' current tour finds them playing intimate shows at smaller venues, and it features an extra little band member - drummer Elaine Bradley is preggers! I sat down with lead singer Tyler Glenn at Bumbershoot, hours before the band appeared on the Fisher Green Stage, and we spoke about the process of him coming out and fond memories of Seattle that he's collected over the years. For tickets to catch Neon Trees at The Showbox, log onto axs.com; and to read the interview with Glenn, go to sgn.org and click on the September 26, 2014 archive.
Finally, look for a review of the Bette Midler concert in next week's issue. Jessica Price is covering the superstar's show at Key Arena on June 1.
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