Josh Turner Nutty Jerry's (Winnie), April 5
It's hard to keep up with every new country crooner that comes over the pop-twang airwaves, but thankfully Josh Turner's deeper-than-the-holler voice manages to stand out from the Keith Urban clones, sounding way more trad-country than those other guys at RodeoHouston who can't travel without a flatiron or a lady to bedazzle their jeans.
Coupled with the fact that he joined the Grand Ole Opry at just 30 years old, Turner is worth the time of you crotchety classic-country heads. Now if he could only start writing some raunchy beddin' songs, we would have a new Conway Twitty on our hands. With Holly Williams and Jody Booth. CRAIG HLAVATY
K-Rino Warehouse Live, April 6
Founder and leader of the legendary South Park Coalition, a collective that now numbers some 60 artists, K-Rino may not have been the very first Houston rapper, but he has been among the very best for two, maybe three generations now. His career has tracked the parallels between rapper and street hustler with uncommon depth and insight across some 20 albums, including the brand-new The Maven.
Fiercely smart, resolutely independent -- a recent single is called "Murda the Mainstream" -- K-Rino has created a legacy that long ago would have been enough for a rapper of his accomplishments to rest on his laurels. Being K-Rino, though, that's the last thing he's going to do. Instead he's throwing Saturday's party celebrating his 30 years as an MC, which might as well be a party for Houston rap itself. CHRIS GRAY
Walter "Wolfman" Washington Market Square Park, April 6
Somewhat like another Washington, Houston's own Little Joe, New Orleans' Walter "Wolfman" Washington is one of his hometown's most beloved musicians and a relative enigma everywhere else. Tutored by no less than Lee Dorsey of "Workin' In a Coalmine" fame, the 69-year-old Walter was leading his own band by the early 1970s, establishing himself as one of the first names in Crescent City soul.
Although he can of course howl at the moon if the mood strikes him, more often this Wolfman recalls other urbane yet still Southern R&B singers like the late Johnny Adams and Bobby "Blue" Bland. CHRIS GRAY
Romeo Santos Toyota Center, April 6
Over the past 17 years, Romeo Santos and bachata boy band Aventura have won the overflowing adoration of prepubescent girls, their mothers, and 35-year-old guys in white pants who love to dance. In the process, Santos and sidekicks scored a surplus of American Music Awards, Premio Lo Nuestro statues, and Billboard Latin Music trophies; dominated the Latin charts like Menudo on steroids; and raked in $12.1 million in 2010 tour revenue.
Right now, though, Aventura is taking some time off. Perhaps permanently. So the band's leading Latin lover is bringing his debut solo slab, Formula Vol. 1, and surging, Usher-approved single "Promise" to arenas across America, from NYC to Atlanta, Chi-Town, Dallas, L.A., Vegas and Houston. S. PAJOT
FIVE OTHER SHOWS YOU SHOULD CONSIDER By Chris Gray
Two Tons of Steel: San Antonio twangabilly band is always welcome here, thanks to "Alcohol and Pills," "Cryin' Eyes," the other fine tunes on 2009's Not That Lucky, and a shit-eating cover of the Ramones' "I Wanna Be Sedated." (Blanco's, April 5)
Belaire: Blissful Austin indie-pop band visits with good neighbors Deep Cuts, New York City Queens, Josiah Hall, and Kyle Scomette. (Houston House of Creeps, April 5)
Dirty South: Serbian-born, Australian-based neo-house god is getting over a touch of the flu, but will hopefully be good to go on Saturday. (Stereo Live, April 6)
Old 97's: Dallas alt-country band that Rocks Off adores plays FREE with a $6 racing ticket before 8 p.m.; the $20 afterwards is still more than worth it. (Sam Houston Race Park, April 6)
Lorrie Morgan: Sassy '90s country-pop siren has gone the more trad route in recent years, and it suits her. (Dosey Doe, April 7)
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