Former Atlantan Kelly Hogan returns for a hometown performance. Hogan has been part of Neko Case’s band for a while now and this time around she’s opening the show, too. She’ll be showcasing songs from her new album, “I Like to Keep Myself in Pain.” Photo: Neko Case
Neko Case, Kelly Hogan
Neko Case is one of the finest singers in popular music. The Virginia-born chanteuse’s forceful yet tender voice seems as comfortable deep in a country song as it does wailing amid crunchy rock guitars. Her latest album, “Middle Cyclone,” was among 2009’s most critically lauded, landing at No. 3 on the Village Voice’s annual year-end critics’ poll. Hogan, Case’s frequent backing vocalist, is an Atlanta native who relocated to Chicago in the late ’90s. She’s just released a new album, “I Like to Keep Myself in Pain,” her first since 2001’s “Because It Feel Good.” Her velvety voice is still one of the best things Atlanta has given to the world. Hogan can convincingly deliver anything from standards to country to classic rock. Maybe that’s why she’s a frequent guest on other artists’ albums, from Tortoise to the Drive-By Truckers to Mavis Staples.
8 p.m. July 20. $36.50. Atlanta Botanical Garden, 1345 Piedmont Ave. N.E., Atlanta. 404-876-5859.
The B-52s may not be prolific crafters of new music these days, but you can always count on this Athens-birthed foursome for a rocking good time. The band’s latest album is still 2008’s “Funplex,” but then that album’s predecessor, “Good Stuff,” was released in 1992, so that seems like just yesterday. As long as we can catch them onstage, all will be well, since that’s where this dance-centric outfit shines brightest. Check out our interview with co-founder and vocalist Fred Schneider.
8 p.m. July 21. $35-$100. Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. N.E., Atlanta. 404-881-2100.
The Temptations, the Four Tops
With their cache of jukebox oldies, including “My Girl” (Temps) and “I Can’t Help Myself” (Tops), these two classic ’60s R&B acts are always popular with baby boomers. And just who are the Temps and the Tops these days? The Temps’ Eddie Kendricks, David Ruffin and Melvin Franklin have all passed on, leaving Otis Williams to carry the flame. The Tops were known for having one of the most stable lineups of all the great vocal groups for decades. Until 1997 and the death of Lawrence Payton, the group hadn’t changed in more than 40 years. But the band is now down to a single original member, Abdul “Duke” Fakir. Obie Benson died in 2005 and the most recent loss was the immortal voice of Levi Stubbs, which we lost in 2008. But we’ll always have those amazing songs.
8 p.m. July 21. $25-$74. Chastain Park Amphitheatre, 4469 Stella Drive, Atlanta. 404-733-4900.
Glenn Miller Orchestra
The quickest way to musically evoke World War II? Play something by the Glenn Miller Orchestra. Lush, lovely and swingin’, the music created by Miller and his big band is a timeless joy. Though Miller’s plane disappeared over the English Channel in December 1944, his legacy lives on in this officially sanctioned band.
7 p.m. July 21. $15-$40. Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater, 201 McIntosh Trail, Peachtree City. 770-631-0630.
Frank Ocean, shown here at the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in California in April, plays a sold out show at Center Stage on sunday, July 22. Photo: Getty Images
“Channel Orange” was already one of the most anticipated albums of the year, even before Ocean revealed that his first love was a man just two weeks before his major label debut album’s official release. The media spotlight prompted an early release to iTunes, though the album hit stores and other digital outlets on Tuesday. The R&B and hip-hop craftsman had grabbed the attention of the music underground and the ear of many critics with last year’s online-only, self-released “Nostalgia, Ultra.” A planned re-release of that inventive mixtape was eventually canceled. In the nearly 18 months between the two releases, Ocean has appeared on the Kanye West-Jay-Z collaboration “Watch the Throne” and had songs recorded by Beyonce and Justin Bieber.
9:30 p.m. July 22. Sold out. Center Stage, 1374 W. Peachtree St. N.W., Atlanta. 404-885-1365.
The ever-outrageous Minaj brings her unpredictable, over-the-top fashion sense and banging beats back to town. She may seem like an attention-seeking novelty to some, but it’s tough to resist the hooky charms of “Super Bass” and “Starships.”
7:30 p.m. July 22. $57.90-$143.25. Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. N.E., Atlanta. 404-881-2100.
Kiss, Motley Crue
Kiss seemed to have separation issues after taking more than one “farewell tour,” but the theatrical rockers are no longer pretending that they’re going anywhere. Those kings of excessive ’80s metal in Motley Crue are about a decade behind Kiss in the debauchery sweepstakes, but they’re just as tenacious as their elders.
7 p.m. July 24. $29-$150; lawn seats $29, four-pack lawn seats $87. Aaron’s Amphitheatre at Lakewood, 2002 Lakewood Ave. S.E., Atlanta. 404-443-5090.
Chicago, the Doobie Brothers
These two bands covered quite a long span of chart history. The brass-fueled Chicago scored 35 Top 40 hits between 1970 and 1991. The Doobies, who evolved from the swampy Southern flavor of “Black Water” to the Michael McDonald-led yacht rock of “What a Fool Believes,” landed 18 songs on the survey from 1972 through 1989.
7:30 p.m. July 24. Chastain Park Amphitheatre, 4469 Stella Drive N.W., Atlanta. 404-733-5012.
Steven Tyler and Joe Perry are taking Aerosmith on the road again, and the band will play Philips Arena on Thursday, July 26. Photo: Getty Images
Aerosmith, Cheap Trick
Back in the ’70s, it’s doubtful that anyone would have imagined that Steven Tyler would become a weekly presence on television. Tyler and guitarist Joe Perry were known as the Toxic Twins for their prodigious drug use in the ’70s (all recounted in unflinching detail in “Walk This Way: The Autobiography of Aerosmith”). Sometime just after the mid-’80s, the group went clean and sober and scored its first Top 20 single in seven years, “Dude (Looks Like a Lady).” Tyler, now 64, just announced that he won’t be returning to the judges’ table on “American Idol” and plans to concentrate on his first career. Popular in the ’70s for their irresistible power-pop (“Surrender,” “I Want You to Want Me”), Cheap Trick reached another generation in the new millennium in the opening credits of “That ’70s Show” with a cover of Big Star’s “In the Street.”
7:30 p.m. July 26. $49.50-$149.50. Philips Arena, 1 Philips Drive, Atlanta. 404-878-3000.
Shane Harrison, email@example.com