Raw Metal

WED 6/2
"There will be topless women present during event," alleges the caveat in Ticketmaster's description for the upcoming Jani Lane and Kevin Dubrow concert at Solid Gold Gentleman's Club (2355 NE 163rd St., North Miami Beach). No shit! It's a cock rock show ... at a titty bar. It's like warning readers about the ostentatious displays of wealth in a $crooge McDuck comic. Eighties hair metal offered an inescapable foray into every teen boy's fantasy: strippers, porn stars, centerfolds, and, oh yeah, catchy pop with a metal pedigree. MTV was littered with videos full of sleazy men and women. Sure, not much has changed except back then the boys wore more Aquanet than the girls, but is it a surprise that now the former lead singers of Warrant and Quiet Riot are playing a strip club?

Quiet Riot was one of the original heavy metal acts to come out of the L.A. glam scene in the mid-1970s, but it wasn't until 1983 that a lighter-sounding Quiet Riot popularized the genre and mousse manes with its debut Metal Health, the first metal album to reach the top spot on the American pop charts. The title track and a cover of Slade's "Cum On Feel the Noize" had teenagers banging their heads for months. Just remember Beavis and Butthead and you've got the picture, exactly. Much later, Jani Lane's Warrant entered the game with the 1989 hit "Heaven" and the strength of its live act. But it was 1990's saucy "Cherry Pie" that forever burned the highly derivative group into American pop consciousness. Then grunge arrived to spoil the party.

What could potentially make this show extremely memorable are the ridiculous, real, and ongoing band rivalries that used to make the Sunset Strip resemble a prematch wrestling boastfest. Dubrow has driven away bandmates several times over, which is probably the reason he's forced to share Lane's group on tour. But for how long? Consider this Dubrow quote about Lane from Metal-Sludge.com: "I wouldn't call him a loudmouth, more so a seemingly miserable person." Probably not for very long at all. The concert begins at 10:00 p.m. Admission is $25. Call 305-956-5726. -- By Margaret Griffis

Happy Returns
Nuevo Nil

FRI 5/28
Miami's favorite musical man of mystery, Nil Lara, hasn't been sitting on his butt watching reality TV all these years since his well-received release Nil Lara came out on Capitol subsidiary Metro Blue in 1996. He's been keeping his chops up, touring the world and introducing new audiences to his music, going in and out of the studio, watching his band fall apart, writing more songs, and playing locally every so often. The Latin guitar master who can seamlessly fuse rock and roll with rootsy and smooth Cuban music known as guajiro and son and can move easily from English to español knows plenty about being a survivor -- and we're not talking the TV show! He's been attempting to keep his head above water in the music business for the past 8 years, exactly the amount of time folks have been pining for Lara's full-length followup to his first album. Finally tonight they'll get their wish when Lara unleashes his new CD at I/O, 30 NE 14th St. Showtime is 10:00. Cover charge is $10. Call 305-358-8007. -- By Nina Korman

Power Ballads
Gospel groups converge on Miami

SAT 5/29
Oh happy day. When the great gospel singer (and Miami native) Marion Williams sang to audiences, it was said people would fall from their seats in frenzied ecstasy as she swung through the aisles belting out hits like "Jesus Is All" and "Packin' Up." Her signature whoops and hollers were emulated by the likes of Little Richard, so you can't say there's no secular power in gospel music. Hear it in full force tonight at 7:00 during a gospel benefit concert at the Joseph Caleb Auditorium. The evening will feature 5 a cappella groups, such as True Believers from Delray Beach; Step by Step from Dallas, Texas; and Hands of Praise (performing American Sign Language) from St. Petersburg. And it's to benefit a very worthy cause: Christian Homes for Children, which operates foster homes for abused kids in South Florida. The show goes on at 5400 NW 22nd Ave. Tickets cost $20. Call 305-825-0517 for info. -- By John Anderson

Water Music

SAT 5/29
We're not really sure what a swamp cabbage is. But anything with the word "swamp" in it doesn't sound the least bit appetizing to us. We like our cabbage covered in mayonnaise and vinegar in coleslaw, not soaked in sludgy green water. However, we have to admit, the type of music made by the band named Swamp Cabbage sounds pretty darn tasty. They call it "raunchy New Orleans-style electro sanctified Florida swamp music." It's an American roots thing, if you really want to know, with nods to greats like Chet Atkins, Tom Waits, and Doc Watson. The group is led by Jacksonville native Walter Parks, former member of acoustic outfit the Nudes and current lead guitarist for Sixties icon Richie Havens. Matthew Lindsey, from Atlanta, plays bass. One-named musician Jagoda, a Bronx native, keeps time on the drums. See Swamp Cabbage from 10:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. at Tobacco Road, 626 S. Miami Ave. Call 305-374-1198 for cover charge info. -- By Nina Korman

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