The Week Ahead from Monday 11th Oct 2010: Badly Drawn Boy, Carl Barat, Paul Smith, Skepta, Bryan Adams and err... Shakin' Stevens
The biggest names of the week have all sold-out, otherwise you would be reading about Stereophonics, Bryan Adams and Cliff Richard - alas all three have been cleared out of tickets for their gigs next week. However, there are still many more gigs to attend from next Monday - kick back and get that organizer out....
All prices + booking fees. For ticket availability, click on the images, below
Guns N' Roses
Not ones for turning up on time but, hey, isn't that all part of the fun? Axl and the boys begin a run of UK dates, including a double-header at the O2 Arena in London. The Wednesday gig is sold-out but the Thursday concert still has premium seating up for grabs at £50. Birmingham on Sunday and Manchester on Monday (18th) are also available at £40 (seating only).
Badly Drawn Boy
Damon Gough returns with new material and a new tour starting in Stockton on Wednesday. A few dates have predictably sold out (Stockton isn't one of them - Manchester and the two London gigs unfortunately are) but if you are lucky the remainder are still on sale - most cost around £17.50. Support on the dates comes from The Candle Thieves.
He can act, he can front The Libertines but can he hold his own as a solo artist? Barat has divided a nation with his new self-titled debut album, a mixture of vaudevillian indie pop and strum-drum nu-folk, but his tour carries on regardless from Friday onwards, starting in Brighton and taking in the sights of Cambridge, Stoke etc. Many dates have successfully sold-out, not surprising for a man with an enviable legacy.
Paul Smith [Maxïmo Park]
Taking a sabbatical from Maximo Park has certainly got fans hearts a-fluttering with his upcoming solo debut album, "Margins" and if you want to see him live you'd better get in quick for tickets. The Teesider kicks off his live solo jaunt in Middlesbrough on Monday, the day that the album comes out - I smell an album launch party. Don't forget his tour in November, although Leeds (27th) has already sold out.
The American duo begin their UK onslaught on Saturday in Glasgow, the same week as their album "The Preview" hits the shops, an alluring mix of tight beats, sharp raps and a few indie-rock samples into the bargain. NME loves 'em, so they'll get plenty of press between now and the second album. Check 'em out - tickets for next week's shows cost around £9.50, plus you can also see them support Tinie Tempah the week after.
Keeping it grimey is Tottenham's Skepta - after flashing his 'Rolex' a few years back and wearing 'Sunglasses At Night', he's back in January "Doin' It Again" for your pleasure (his third solo album). Next week from Tuesday, he plays as part of the Mobo Tour 2010 alongside Aggro Santos and others. First stop is Norwich with tickets costing £10 upwards.
Heading up a trio of top-notch rock guitarists playing live is Britain's amazing Jeff Beck. From Friday onwards, Beck plays in Bournemouth, Brighton etc until the end of the month's Royal Albert Hall double-header. In support are The Baseballs, much-fancied rock n roll outfit who will surely crossover at some point. Tickets are £36.50.
Other axe-wielders in action next week include Joe Satriani who starts his tour in Dublin on Saturday and Manchester on Sunday. Tickets are £33 upwards. You can also catch Nils Lofgren performing acoustic sets around the UK, starting with Basingstoke (almost sold-out) on Tuesday, Wirral on Wednesday and many more until Salisbury on the 30th. Prices cost around £28.50 - £33.50.
The million-selling vocalist returns to the UK for a trio of spectacular dates on Monday (Glasgow), Tuesday (Manchester) and Wednesday (Hammersmith), in support of the recent soul-Stax album "100 Miles From Memphis". Tickets are limited, especially at the London gig where only seats are available at £32.50
Yes ladies, grab those denim jackets and jeans, i-i-i-i-it's Shaky! Back from the 80s and hopefully still able to jive and bend those knees, the Welsh wonder returns with a greatest hits show full of his rock 'n' roll and rockabilly classics such as "Green Door", "This Ole House" and "Oh Julie". Buxton is the first port of call on Tuesday, with Norwich, Cardiff and more on the agenda until Shepherd's Bush on the 20th - tickets cost around £23.50 plus fees and don't forget he's back in 2011 for even more Shakin'.
Shakin' Stevens' October tour has now been postponed due to illness. The tour will now take place in 2011
Just time to mention two one-off concerts in a totally un-biased fashion - Chameleons Vox (the new name for The Chameleons) will play a special homecoming date with Artery on Monday in Manchester. Tickets are now only on the door (if you're lucky), while in London we welcome the Japanese hip-hop turntablist legend, DJ Krush and Prefuse 73 play a special one-off at KOKO on Saturday with a few tickets left at £15.
If you fancy a sizzling night of fevered Cuban and Latin dancing and music, you'd best head to the Hackney Empire on Tuesday (and Wednesday and Thursday if you like) when the acclaimed show "Havana Rakatan" takes up residence for three nights of slinky, sexy mayhem - tickets cost from £11 upwards depending on seat location.
The acclaimed playwright Nina Reine hit the theatrical headlines with her 2006 debut "Rabbit" and may well repeat the same feat again with "Tribes", a drama centred around a one deaf man's viewpoint of his bizarre unhinged family. And then he meets the apple of his eye, Sylvia. Will she listen to him? The Royal Court Theatre has consistently supplied audiences with successful plays (its previous presentation "The Rivals" has just 'gone West End'). This one starts on Thursday - £18 to £25.
Manchester Comedy Festival 2010
The annual laughterthon begins on Saturday 16th with Jack Wise and the XS Malarkey Club providing the first of several comedy gigs over the following fortnight. Other comedians taking part include Rhod Gilbert, Mark Watson and Ian Cognito - see our article about it for the details.
If you love cooking, then you'll love Love Cooking, a foodie demonstration and tasting event being held in Edinburgh from Tuesday onwards. James Martin, Gino D'Acampo, Rachel Allen and Ainsley Harriott are all present and correct during the day from 10am onwards. Tickets cost from £23.50 - £43.50 - but hurry, Martin in particular will be in demand.