The fact that it’s Super Bowl weekend seems pretty consuming, but while some people wait for Justin Timberlake to rock the halftime, don’t forget all the concert options around Boston. For starters, G. Love and Special Sauce re-team to spread their bluesy drawl at House of Blues on Friday as part of a 25th anniversary tour. Figure that the Philly-bred, Boston-launched Love (pictured) can’t lose in the match between the Eagles and Patriots.
Peter Wolf and his Midnight Travelers celebrate the 35th anniversary of WUMB—as well as that station’s DJ Albert O, marking his own 35th anniversary on Boston radio—with a concert at Cary Hall in Lexington on Friday. Of course both Wolf and Albert O share history through respective stints at rock institution WBCN. A veteran who embodies New York much the way Wolf reps Boston, the rocking troubadour Willie Nile rides his winding, under-sung career into City Winery the same night, likely to include a dip into songs from a recent tribute to Bob Dylan. And City Winery stays strong on Saturday with an appearance by country rocker and master songsmith Steve Earle, with Buffalo Tom’s Bill Janovitz opening.
Saturday—maybe Super Bowl Eve to some people—offers the most live music. Rostam presents his string-iced chamber pop at the Museum of Fine Arts’ Remis Auditorium, which once upon a time hosted his former band Vampire Weekend. Local jazz vocalist Dominique Eade and third-stream pianist Ran Blake perform a rare duo concert at MIT’s Killian Hall behind last year’s Town and Country, featuring songs from the American folk tradition. The Nashville-based Wood Brothers—featuring Colorado-bred siblings Oliver (vocals, guitar) and Chris (bass), also of jazz-groove experimenters Medeski Martin and Wood—weave a rootsy spell at House of Blues. The artfully stylish, romantic pop outfit Eddie Japan supports its new album Golden Age at Once Ballroom on a packed bill that recalls a great night at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Rumble (which Eddie Japan won in 2013) with noir powerhouse the Devil’s Twins, the Grownup Noise and Analog Heart rounding out the eclectic evening.
Finally, Saturday brings music and baseball worlds together in the annual Hot Stove Cool Music concert at the Paradise Rock Club. This year’s event may not boast someone with the star power of Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder like last year, but the show keeps the ball moving with appearances from “Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough’s band, Juliana Hatfield (teasing her recent Olivia Newton John tribute), Band of Their Own (an all-star group of women that includes Letters to Cleo’s Kay Hanley, Belly’s Gail Greenwood, the Blake Babies’ Freda Love Smith and Jen Trynin), Will Dailey, baseball scribe Peter Gammons and players Bronson Arroyo and Bernie Williams, sharing their musical chops. It’s all for a good cause in Theo and Paul Epstein’s Foundation to Be Named Later. Then you can shift to football on Super Bowl Sunday.