Friday, August 22, 2014

Crazy Carls, Cisco Adler play St. Petersburg

   If you haven't made you music plans for the weekend yet, here's a last-minute suggestion.
Crazy Carls
   The Crazy Carls are a fun pop-rock band from the Orlando area. They're starting to generate some buzz because of their new single and video "Let Me" and they're touring the South. They've been compared to Maroon 5, but you could also say they're reminiscent of Jason Mraz.
   They'll be at Jannus Live in downtown St. Petersburg Saturday. They're opening for Cisco Adler, the former frontman of Whitestarr and son of legendary producer Lou Adler. Florida band On The Avenue is also on the bill.
   It should be a really nice evening of feel-good music, and it's only $5. You can get tickets at the gate. 
   Jannus Live is at 200 First Ave. N., St. Petersburg. Call 727-565-0550 or at

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Sarasota's Theatre Odyssey seeks young playwrights for competition

    If you're a teenager and an aspiring playwright from the Bradenton area, you might want to work up a 10-minute play in the next two months.
   Theatre Odyssey is gearing up for its third annual Student Ten-Minute Playwriting Festival, which is set for Jan. 16.  
   Playwrights have until Oct. 17 to submit plays. Readers go through all the submissions and select a few of the best plays, and then Theatre Odyssey produces them, with experienced acts and directors, for an audience. A panel of theater professionals pick the winner.
   The winning playwright gets a cash prize, and the play gets another production at the Theatre Odyssey’s Ten-Minute Play Festival, the company's more established festival that's open to playwrights of all ages. The play is also published in Theatre Odyssey's annual compilation of finalists from its two festivals.

   To be eligible, playwrights have to live along the gulf coast between Fort Myers and Tampa, and they have to be in grades 9 through 12 or the home-schooled equivalent, in the 2014-15 school year.
   The plays have to be no more than 10 minutes long (that usually means they're between seven and 11 pages) and require no more than five actors. It has to be original work that hasn't been performed for a paying audience in the area.
   Completed manuscripts should be sent to Theatre Odyssey, P.O. Box 1383, Sarasota, FL  34230-1383.
   You can see a complete list of submission rules and requirements here.
   Even if you're not playwright, the festival makes for an interesting evening of theater. The plays that make it to the finals are ambitious and entertaining, though obviously created by inexperienced writers, and the acting and direction are as good as you'll see in any local theater. The festival's held in the David S. and Anne V. Howard Studio Theatre on the Bradenton campus of State College of Florida.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Tickets on sale for Bubba Sparxxx concert Sept. 20 in Sarasota

   If you're a hick-hop fan, you're going to want to hurry up and get tickets to see the Bubba Sparxxx show in Sarasota on Sept. 20. Sparxxx and "special guests" Soopa Groop will be at the Cabana Inn and only 200 tickets will be sold.
   Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 day of show, but organizers predict the show will sell out so you might not want to wait until the day of the show to buy your tickets. They're on
sale now.
   Sparxxx is one of the progenitors of country rap, and his biggest hits -- "Deliverance" and "Ugly" -- have scored with both country and urban audiences.
   Sparxxx took a break from music, but he's back now. He released a new album, "Made on McCosh Mill Road," in June.
   The Cabana Inn is at 2525 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Call 941-955-0195.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Contest at Clancy's in Bradenton offers chance for a band gig

   If you've got a band and you're looking for a gig, you should contact Clancy's Irish Sports Pub. Soon.
   Clancy's is holding a contest called Last Band Standing. It's basically a five-week-long battle of the bands, and the winner gets a gig at the pub.
   Here's how it works: The first 12 bands that sign up play sets at Clancy's, with three bands playing on each of the four Monday nights in September. Audience members vote for their favorites. Then there's finale on Oct. 6, at which the winner will be named.
  There's no entry fee, but the only way to sign up is by sending an email to The subject line should read "Last Band."
   Clancy's is at 6218 Cortez Road., Bradenton. For more information, call 941-794-2489 or go to

Brantley Gilbert, Colt Ford perform in Tampa

  If you couldn't make it to Joyland to see Colt Ford on Friday -- or if you caught his show and it left you wanting more -- we've got some good news for you: Ford will be back in town in just a few months.
   He's one of the acts in the "Throwdown by the Bay," a mammoth country show headlined by Brantley Gilbert that's scheduled for 8 p.m. Dec. 12 at the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa.
 Also slated to perform are Parmalee, Tyler Farr and Chase Bryant.
   Gilbert's having a phenomenal year, with his successful "Let It Ride" tour, his gold album "Just as I Am" and his platinum single "Bottoms Up."
   The concert's presented by radio station US 103.5, and the lineup offers something for just about any country-lover's taste, from the bluegrass-flavored music of Parmalee to the hick-hop of country-rap pioneer Ford.
   Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. this Friday, Aug. 22. They'll run you $29.75, $35 and $43 plus service charge. Call 813-301-2500 or go to

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Filmmaker Waters brings one-man show to Tampa

   The Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival is almost always worth checking out, for the assortment of odd and often great films that you might not get a chance to experience in a theater otherwise.
   This year's 25th annual festival has a great bonus: Iconic outsider filmmaker John Waters (of "Pink Flamingos," "Polyester" and "Hairspray" fame) will be there, performing
John Waters
his one-man show "This Filthy World: Filthier & Dirtier" at the gorgeous Tampa Theatre.

   In 2012, Waters hitchhiked across America. The show deals largely with that experience, which is also the basis for his entertaining new book "Carsick." He'll be autographing copies of "Carsick" after his Tampa Theatre performance.
   Waters' show is set for 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 4. Tickets are $33, $43 and $63. You can get them through the festival's website, Tampa Theatre is at 711 N. Franklin St., in the heart of downtown Tampa.
   The festival runs Oct. 3-11.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Martina McBride to perform at Sarasota's Van Wezel

   Martina McBride's been making hit records for more than 20 years, and she won her first Grarmmy Award 18 years ago. That's a very long career in popular music terms, but she's as popular as ever.
   In fact, her most recent album, "Everlasting," was the first independently distributed
Martina McBride
female album to debut at No. 1 on the Top Country Albums Chart. It also debuted at No. 7 on the Billboard 200.

   McBride will perform songs from the album -- which features her interpretations of classic soul songs -- when she comes to the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall in Sarasota at 8 p.m. Oct. 16. Her concert also includes some of her best-known songs, reworked with a Motown vibe.
   Tickets for the show go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, Aug. 15. Prices are $31.75-$84.98. Call 941-953-3368 or go to