Did someone say ‘payday’? Yes, it’s that time of the month when being a wage slave trapped in an unjust capitalist paradigm doesn’t seem quite so bad. Enjoy it while it lasts, by booking for one of these fab upcoming events before they all sell out and you’re left weeping and trawling ticket resale websites.
TONY BENNETT/LADY GAGA
Royal Albert Hall, June 8 2015
Bennett! Gaga! Together on one stage! Yes, the veteran crooner (who’s found fame with a new young audience in recent years) teams up with the eccentric pop icon herself for a session in the grand setting of the Albert Hall. Though they may seem an unlikely couple of swingers, the two are well-placed for an evening of sophisticated sing-song, having collaborated on an album of jazz standards by the likes of Duke Ellington and Cole Porter – ‘Cheek to Cheek’ – earlier this year. They’ll be singing plenty of material from the album at tonight’s performance, backed by both a big band and an orchestra for extra pizzazz. Proceeds from the show will be donated to children’s charity WellChild.
THE WHO HITS 50!
O2 Shepherds Bush Empire, Nov 11
First of all, this isn’t actually a gig by 50-year-old rock institution The Who – if you want guaranteed tickets to see Roger Daltrey wanging his microphone around and Pete Townshend doing that thing with his arm, you’ll need to book for their gigs at the much bigger O2 Arena in December. However, we wouldn’t discount a cameo appearance by the two-piece Who themselves at this charity event for Daltrey’s charity the Teenage Cancer Trust.
The main thrust, though, is that The Who’s band will back a series of guests ranging from ’90s hellraisers (Pearl Jam man Eddie Vedder, Oasis’s Liam Gallagher, James Dean Bradfield from Manic Street Preachers) to younger hitmakers (Rizzle Kicks and Tom Odell among them). It’s essentially glorified Who karaoke with a very steep ticket price, but it’s all for a good cause, so it’s worth shelling out for a chance to hear Liam bellowing ‘Won’t Get Fooled Again’.
Alexandra Palace, April 13 2015
The chirpy singer-songwriter who surprised everyone by bagging two BRIT Awards in 2013 now headlines an absolutely massive show at Ally Pally. Devon-born Howard will be serving up acoustic treats from his new album ‘I Forget Where We Were’, with much emoting along the way.
BELLE AND SEBASTIAN
Central Hall Westmister, May 11 2015
For the devoted hordes, Stuart Murdoch’s veteran gaggle of Glaswegian popsters are consummate practitioners of liltingly melancholic and lyrically wry, indie-pop songcraft. For others, they’re the very definition of mimsy and twee. If you’re still undecided after all these years, this show at the grand Central Hall in Westminster would be a good chance to make up your mind. They’ll be showcasing material from upcoming new album, ‘Girls In Peacetime Want To Dance’, scheduled for release in January 2015, and a few past favourites.
SHARON VAN ETTEN
O2 Shepherds Bush Empire, April 29 2015
The Brooklyn singer-songwriter showcases her subtle, elegant, tender and true songcraft. Having followed up her 2012 breakthrough album ‘Tramp’ with a top-class fourth called ‘Are We There?’, SVE is wowing bigger crowds than ever nowadays – grab a ticket quick if you want to see what all the fuss is about.
THE RULING CLASS
Trafalgar Studios, Jan 16-31 2015
We love Scottish actor James McAvoy, and we especially love him when he’s teamed up with golden boy director Jamie Lloyd, like in last year’s ‘Macbeth’ at Trafalgar Studios. They’re together again for this revival of Peter Barnes’s play that pokes fun at English nobility. Tickets went on sale yesterday morning, so catch what’s left quickly.