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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
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Live music picks, March 12-17

Eileen Ivers. Photo: Luke Ratray

Eileen Ivers. Photo: Luke Ratray

FRIDAY
Eileen Ivers

She’s probably best known as the violinist from “Riverdance,” but all-Ireland fiddle champion Ivers’ recording credits include more than 100 albums and many movie scores. She’ll bring along an ensemble of 13 musicians and dancers for a multi-media performance called “Beyond the Bog Road.”
8 p.m. March 12. $20-$42. Ferst Center for the Arts, 349 Ferst Drive N.W., Atlanta. 404-894-2787.

FRIDAY-SATURDAY
Drive-By Truckers, David Barbe

These Athens rockers have released album after album of music that has given Southern rock a jolt of heart, soul and wisdom: “Southern Rock Opera,” “Decoration Day,” “The Dirty South,” “A Blessing and a Curse,” “Brighter Than Creation’s Dark.” It’s an awe-inspiring string of goodness. This gig celebrates another addition to the stellar catalog, “The Big To-Do,” set to be released March 16. Opening the show is one of Athens’ hardest working musicians and producers, David Barbe. He’s been a part of the city’s music scene since the mid-’80s, when he started a band called Mercyland. He was also the bassist for the Bob Mould-led Sugar and has an amazing list of production and engineering credits (he’s part owner of Athen’s Chase Park Transduction Studios). Barbe’s bringing along a new band, the Quick Hooks, and a batch of new songs from his just released album, “Love It, Don’t Choke It to Death.”
8:30 p.m. March 12-13. $25. Variety Playhouse, 1099 Euclid Ave., Atlanta. 404-524-7354.

Andy Irvine. Photo: Cindy Funk

Andy Irvine. Photo: Cindy Funk

SATURDAY
Patrick Street

It began in the mid-’80s as a one-off gathering of some of Ireland’s great traditional folk musicians. It’s been a part-time, yet ongoing, project for 25 years, still led by former Bothy Band member Kevin Burke and the brilliant Andy Irvine, one of the founding members of Planxty.
8:15 p.m. March 13. $35. Spivey Hall, 2000 Clayton State Blvd., Morrow. 770-960-4200.

SATURDAY
Rodrigo y Gabriela

This Mexican duo creates a beautiful and unusual blend of acoustic guitars that incorporates classical, Latin and even metal influences. Their self-titled album was a No. 1 hit in Ireland, where the pair now lives. That 2006 album, their first international release, included covers of Metallica’s “Orion” and Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven.” Though most of us have reached the saturation point with that Zep warhorse, Rodrigo y Gabriela gave it a fresh spin. The duo’s latest is 2009’s “11:11,” an album that finds the guitarists expanding their sound on a batch of all-original songs.
8:30 p.m. March 13. $35. Center Stage, 1374 W. Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-885-1365.

SUNDAYartscal0110.buble
Michael Bublé

Genial Canadian Bublé used to deliver every song as if there was a wink and a cheesy “scoobiddy-bee-bop-doot-doot, yeah!” behind every note. The doe-eyed singer, bless his heart, is getting much better at incorporating some of that old Frank Sinatra swing into modern pop. Not that it matters to fans, who have sent his CD sales figures into the millions since his 2003 major label debut. His recent “Saturday Night Live” appearance — including a duet with the soulful Sharon Jones — makes us hope that the vocal mudslide of schmaltz and slurs is a thing of the past.
8 p.m. March 14. $49.50-$89.50. Gwinnett Arena, 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth. 770-813-7500.

SUNDAY
Ben Folds

North Carolina-reared Folds is the musical descendant of Billy Joel and Elton John, a modern-day piano man with an acerbic wit. He’s released a long string of memorable work, including “Whatever and Ever Amen,” his second release with the trio Ben Folds Five, which featured the alt-rock ballad “Brick.” His latest album, “Way to Normal,” is his third solo release.
8 p.m. March 14. $30-$35. The Tabernacle, 152 Luckie St. N.W., Atlanta. 404-659-9022.

MONDAY
Air

When French duo Air released “Moon Safari” in 1998, critics and music fans swooned over its gauzy electronic space-pop. Its most popular track, “Sexy Boy,” was a hooky concoction of breathy vocals, electronic whooshes and percolating percussion and was trotted out for more than one television commercial. The pair has never made a better album, but each of the five subsequent studio albums (including the soundtrack to “The Virgin Suicides” and 2009’s “Love 2”) is fascinating in its own way.
8 p.m. March 15. $29. Center Stage, 1374 W. Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-885-1365.

WEDNESDAY
St. Patty’s Day Extravaganza with Buddy O’Reilly

It’s an annual tradition at Eddie’s Attic. Atlanta’s long-serving and hard-working Buddy O’Reilly Band will have everyone seeing (and hearing) green with their Irish-flavored tunes.
6:30 and 9:30 p.m. March 17. $5-$13. Eddie’s Attic, 515-B N. McDonough St., Decatur. 404-377-4976.

John Mayer. Photo: Mel Evans / AP

John Mayer. Photo: Mel Evans / AP

WEDNESDAY
John Mayer

About a decade ago, he was just one of the many hopeful singer-songwriters frequenting the stage at Eddie’s Attic. Now he’s such a household name that his non-musical pronouncements (such as some ill-advised statements in a recent Playboy interview and subsequent apologies) and his Twitter feed have overshadowed his musical career in the minds of many. Maybe this Philips Arena gig will put things back into proper perspective.
7 p.m. March 17. $50-$75. Philips Arena, 1 Philips Drive, Atlanta. 404-878-3000.

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