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Friday, January 2
J Boog and Anuhea The Observatory With his sleeve tattoos, backward baseball cap and penchant for oversized T-shirts, J Boog more resembles a member of Action Bronson's crew than a rising star of reggae. There's a strange kind of disconnect when watching his videos, too: sans dreadlocks and a rasta knit hat, you can't believe this huge, tough-looking guy is singing, sweetly and smoothly, over R&B-infused reggae grooves. His most famous song, "Let's Do It Again," could've been on the soundtrack of an Adam Sandler rom-com, filled with "ooh baby"s and words such as "lovers" and "paradise."Then again, you could say his lack of an image is his image. If J Boog is passionate about anything, it's keeping it real. See him two night back to back with Hawaiian songbird Anuhea (Lilledeshan Bose)
G-Eazy Fox Pomona Born Gerald Gillum, the Bay Area-based rapper is one of the most ambitious up-and-comers. The self-proclaimed James Dean of hip-hop, G-Eazy blends the East Bay's progressive rap with a sense of showmanship crafted in his collegiate hometown of New Orleans. See him at Fox Pomona on Friday with Jay Ant, Kehlani, and Kool John (Daniel Kohn)
New Years' Eve Redo The Wayfarer We all have that New Years' Eve experience we wish we could take back. You were the drunk who wound up puking in the bushes and losing your car keys, the one who got dumped by the boyfriend/girlfriend 10 minutes before midnight, or worse--you were stuck at work. Well if you want a redo, local DJ duo The Best Thing is willing to give it to you. On Friday, they're hosting their second annual New Years' Eve Redo, this time at the Wayfarer in Costa Mesa. They've got it all for you--wall-rattling deep house jams, champagne, a photo booth. Aside from The Best Thing, the night includes sets from Dan Torres and Bass Stroke. Do yourself a favor and start 2015 all over again, hopefully with more beers and fewer tears. (Nate Jackson) Saturday, January 3
The Iron Maidens Slidebar If there was any doubt left in the world that women could rock, we submit the guitar heroines of The Iron Maidens, the only all-female tribute to heavy metal legends Iron Maiden. Formed in Los Angeles, each member of The Iron Maidens are all accomplished musicians in their own right, and have pinned down the musical stylings of their rocker counterparts enough to add their own spin on IM's tracks through improvisation. The Iron Maidens have rightly earned praise for their musical talents and attention to detail in Iron Maiden's concert performances, now it's up to you to see them for yourself. Iron Maidens play their first show of 2015 at the Slidebar, so come through and hang out! (Aimee Murillo)
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Sunday, January 4
Buddy Nielsen The Observatory Senses Fail singer Buddy Nielsen ended 2014 by causing a stir with a shockingly brave interview he gave about his sexual orientation and sexual addiction on a podcast back in November. Unveiling some of his darkest secrets when it came to alcohol and prostitutes, fans and followers of the band saw him in a whole new light. And despite what most would think, he did earn a good deal of support for coming clean. It's one of the things that we can really admire about the screaming frontman who's obviously been through his share of shit. This weekend, Nielsen's acoustic show at the Observatory promises to be a packed house as he treats SF fans to some acoustic versions of the band's songs, followed by a discussion on addiction, sexuality and finding peace. Catch him this Sunday along with supporting act Allison Weiss. (Nate Jackson)