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Ring in the new year with song and music

| Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, 9:00 p.m.
Chris Jamison performs at the Oaks Theater on New Year's Eve.
Chris Jamison performs at the Oaks Theater on New Year's Eve.

There's no better gig for a musician than New Year's Eve.

The atmosphere is near perfect with audiences in a good mood and eager to be entertained. Performing "Auld Lang Syne" at midnight is on many musicians' bucket list. And talk about the party of all parties — it doesn't get much better than New Year's Eve.

There are many opportunities to hear good music as 2018 arrives. Here's a list of some of the venues offering live music.

Stage AE, North Shore: Lotus

This is the third consecutive year that the Philadelphia-based jam band has celebrated New Year's Eve in Pittsburgh. The good news is that the band is scheduled to play two sets. The bad news is the show is sold out. Tickets are available on secondary markets such as Stub Hub starting at $51.

Doors open: 8 p.m.

Details: 412-229-5483,

Oaks Theater, Oakmont: Chris Jamison

Season Seven of "The Voice" earned the North Hills High School alum Jamison a national following, Three years later he's become a solid and professional performer with potential. Admission includes gourmet cheese towers and pastries from the Oakmont Bakery. Magician Vince Charming also will perform.

Doors open: 7 p.m.

Admission: $25-30

Details: 412-828-6322,

Rex Theater, South Side: Too Many Zooz, You Bred Raptors?

This might be the most inventive musical bill of the night. Too Many Zooz and You Bred Raptors? were busking outfits in New York City that have transitioned to indoor venues. Too Many Zooz uses trumpet, sax and percussion in a genre-bending funk mix. You Bred Raptors? started wearing masks to draw attention; now their music is more than enough to pique interest. Opening the show is local band Afro Yaqui Music Collective. Admission includes champagne toast at midnight for those 21 and over.

Doors open: 8 p.m.

Admission: $25-30

Details: 412-381-6811,

Mr. Smalls, Millvale: The Commonheart, with Cisco Kid, Selecta

The Commonheart a big 10-piece band with a powerful sound that magically melds rock and soul. Lead singer Clinton Clegg is powerhouse of a singer, recalling vocalists such as Alex Chilton and David Clayton-Thomas of Blood, Sweat, and Tears. And The Commonheart's musicians are as good as any outfit in town, a well-oiled machine that wowed audiences across the country in 2017.

Doors open: 8 p.m.

Admission: $25

Details: 412-821-4447,

Doubletree Hotel, Moon: Blues Society of Western Pennsylvania Blues Bash, featuring Santini-Jensen Project, Somethin's Cookin'

Hailing from Memphis, singer and harmonica player Brandon Santini and guitarist Jeff Jensen are veteran bluesman who have collaborated for years. But in this incarnation, the duo shares equal billing, with Santini dynamic showmanship backed by Jensen's fiery guitar.

If you're planning to go, however, the show is sold out.


First Night, Downtown Pittsburgh: Lee Fields and the Expressions, various artists

Sometimes referred to as Little JB for his resemblance to James Brown, Fields released his first single in 1969. One of the last remaining soul singers with roots in the '60s, Fields will ring in the New Year on the Dollar Bank Stage starting at 10:45 p.m.

Other artists appearing at First Night include Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers at the Benedum Center; the Yoko Suzuki Trio at the Trust Arts Education Center; Matthew Korbanic at the Courtyard Marriott; and Byron Nash and Plan B on the Dollar Bank Stage.

Admission: Free


Rege Behe is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.

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