Houston's Best Weekend Concerts: Robert Plant, MDC, Change In the Game, etc.,
Robert Plant's new project is already on the short list of most awkwardly named bands to visit Houston this year. (Does it have to be "Robert Plant Presents"?) Still, the recent Austin transplant gets a pass because, well, it's Robert Plant on a theater tour. His Web site promises the tour touches every aspect of Plant's distinguished career, and a YouTube teaser shows the group absolutely on fire on "Black Dog."
Plant's new ensemble of expert instrumentalists features everything from a master of the ritti (one-string African violin) and ex-member of psychedelic Britpoppers Cast, but the most interesting player (perhaps) is John Baggott, a former member of Massive Attack and one of the originators of the dusky Bristol-spawned '90s sound known as "trip-hop." CHRIS GRAY
Even with Houston's considerable African immigrant population, concerts by African artists remain rare outside iFest and the odd SPA event. That alone makes Saturday's show sponsored by Spinlet, a San Francisco-based company that offers digital distribution to emerging West African talent - mostly Nigerians here - worth checking out.
Heading up this tour is Tuface Idibia (better known as 2Face), a former member of the Plantashun Boyz who has become a popular hip-hop/R&B singer in his own right. Joining him is Ice Prince, who was recently called "Nigeria's hottest rapper" for his dancehall-ish style; D'Prince, younger brother of producer/songwriter/music-biz mogul Don Jazzy; and Seyi Shey, now on her own after a tenure in UK soul-pop group From Above. CHRIS GRAY
Nutty Jerry's, June 22
Ironically, Bret Michaels' stint as front man for '80s glam-rock band Poison is probably one of the lesser-known roles he's played as a celebrity at this point. In his post-Poison years, he's become much more than the guy busting out "Every Rose Has Its Thorn." Today Michaels is virtual one-man reality-TV network thanks to Rock of Love -- the single most successful reality show in VH1's history -- its on-the-road counterpart Rock of Love Bus, Celebrity Apprentice and now Rock My RV, where the rocker plays interior designer on one of the Travel Channel's hottest new shows.
But Michaels keeps his own wheels rolling in concert too, touring with his solo band and resurrecting hits like "Nothing but a Good Time" and the more recent Miley Cyrus-assisted tune "Nothing to Love." ANGELICA LEICHT
520 Texas Ave., Houston, TX