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Amy Burger

Tribute bands have become a big deal -- and a big draw -- particularly when they are comprised of talented musicians from some of the most popular local bands. Rolling Stones tribute act Street Fighting Band is one of the latest incarnations of the trend that spawned tributes El Monstero and Celebration Day -- all of which share common members.

After a successful year on Broadway (and four Tony Award nominations), Motown the Musical launched its first national tour last spring, premiering in St. Louis on Tuesday evening at the Fabulous Fox to a packed house.

New Orleans rockers the Revivalists brought their unique sound back to Old Rock House on Wednesday night for a full-force, nearly two-hour set; and the fairly packed house of loyal fans ate up every second.

Jam veterans Widespread Panic returned to St. Louis on Tuesday night for the first of two shows at Peabody Opera House as part of its fall tour. As a diehard fan of the band for nearly 25 years, I was of course excited to spend some time with them once again in my home city at such an intimate venue.

It's been four long years since grunge-rock pioneers Pearl Jam graced St. Louis with their musical presence, but that extended absence was rectified Friday night at an electrifying three-hour performance at Scottrade Center for a packed house of rabid fans.

Approximately 8,500 fans of jam rock, blues, funk, soul, bluegrass and more flocked to the heartland this past weekend for the inaugural Phases of the Moon Music and Art Festival, held at Kennekuk County Park just outside of the small town of Danville, Illinois, a stone's throw from the Illinois-Indiana border.

I think everyone who lived through the '80s can agree that there was no shortage of loud, longhaired rock bands dominating the radio and MTV. Amid the plethora of spandex-clad arena rockers like Mötley Crüe, Poison, Ratt and Bon Jovi, however, one band stood apart.

This is the summer of Jack White. The 39-year-old guitar virtuoso, singer, songwriter, producer and all-around Renaissance man has been nearly inescapable since the June release of his second solo album, "Lazaretto."

If the size and enthusiasm of the crowd at the first Summer Gras festival at Old Rock House was any indication, this will become a popular annual event. Billed as a "celebration of the music and food of New Orleans," Summer Gras lived up to its name with a variety of New Orleans-based and NOLA-inspired local bands split between the indoor venue and a large outdoor stage.

Freaky skies bearing evening thunderstorms inched across St. Louis Saturday, the summer solstice, and perhaps Mother Nature's special way of welcoming the psychedelic blues rock of Chris Robinson Brotherhood on their stop at the Pageant.

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