Pop culture, entertainment & all things Fresno

CANCELLED: “Jesus Christ Superstar”

jesusJesus Christ Superstar” the arena spectacular, the touring version of the Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s groundbreaking rock musical, which features a cast chock full of rock, pop and R&B heavy weights, including Brandon Boyd and Johnny Rotten, has been canceled.

The announcement for the Fresno date, which was scheduled for July 19 at the Save Mart Center, came this afternoon. While the release is light on information, is reporting that the whole tour has been canceled, according to social media reports from the cast. The tour’s website has this short note.

All purchased tickets will be refunded. Online and telephone sales will be refunded automatically. Tickets purchased from the Box Office or ticket outlets must be returned to the point of purchase. The Save Mart Center Box Office will begin refunds 10 a.m. Monday during business hours.

This is the first show at the Save Mart Center than I can remember ever being canceled. It’s the second canceled show in the last week.

You Review: Bruno Mars

When the traffic advisory went out yesterday afternoon for the area of Shaw Avenue around the Save Mart Center, it was like, “duh.” Bruno Mar’s “Moonshine Jungle” tour (which stopped at the arena last night) has been sold-out pretty much since tickets went on sale.

The show was sure to be packed, but it looks like it filled up early, thanks to the one-two punch of opener Aloe Blacc.

The whole thing (or the collage I created of it via social media, which was kind of fun) had a next-level King-of-Pop feel (with a good level of Elvis the pelvis for good measure).

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You review: Tim McGraw/Kip Moore + Cassadee Pope

mcgrawTim McGraw kicked off his “Sundown Heaven Town” tour last night at the Save Mart Center. The tour, which features country up-and-comer Kip Moore and “The Voice” winner Cassadee Pope as openers, is the kind of big-draw highly-anticipated country show that does so well at the arena.

We’d love to have your thoughts on the show.

Did the lineup get the kind of turnout and excitement other country shows have seen (Lady Antebellum and the like)? How were the Moore and Cassadee? Do they have the goods to move to that next level? Can we expect either to be passing through on their own headline tours anytime soon?

And how about McGraw’s song choices, sound and overall performance level?

Feel free to share your review, then check out our photo gallery from the show at The Fresnobee.

Bandgeek!: Punknecks, Millionaires and Circle Takes the Square

4-25-14Everything is happening this weekend. While that might overwhelm some, the rest of us know it’s pretty par for the course, especially when it comes to the myriad live music options happening each week. We list them all right here in your weekly update BANDGEEEEEK!


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Tour announcement: Theresa Caputo Live

caputoTheresa Caputo is your typical Long Island wife and mom, only she can communicate with the dead and has her own reality TV show — TLC’s “Long Island Medium.”

Caputo, who has been a practicing medium for 10 years, certified by the Forever-Family Foundation, brings her live show “The Experience,” to the Save Mart Center June 4. She will conduct interactive readings with audience members and share stories about her life and her unique gifts.

Caputo’s first book titled “There’s More to Life Than This” was released in October and debuted at No. 2 on the NY Times Best Seller List. “Long Island Medium” is in its fourth season on TLC.

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Tour announcement: “Jesus Christ Superstar” arena spectacular

jesusThere is irony at the center of the “Jesus Christ Superstar” arena spectacular, a touring version of the Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s groundbreaking rock musical, which makes a 50 + city run this summer. The show stops at the Save Mart Center July 16.

The cast is chock full of rock, pop and R&B heavy weights, including Brandon Boyd, from the rock band Incubus; NSYNC’ JC Chasez; Michelle Williams of Destiny’s Child and (in a totally shocking bit of casting) Sex Pistols Johnny Rotten (aka John Lydon).

It’s Jesus Christ surrounded by superstars.

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Concert news: Kip Moore added as Tim McGraw’s special guest

kipmooreWe already told you about the Fresno date for Tim McGraw’s “Sundown Heaven” tour. It stops at the Save Mart Center May 8. Now comes news that Kip Moore will join the show as McGraw’s special guest, along with the already announced Cassadee Pope.

Moore is an up-and-comer who helped usher in the next generation of truck-loving country artists (his single “Somethin’ ‘Bout a Truck” was No. 1 on the Billboard country chart). His debut album, “Up All Night,” was and was the best-selling debut by a male country artist in 2012 and 2013.

Check out the video for “Somethin’ ‘Bout a Truck” on the jump.

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Concert announcement: Rascal Flatts plays Save Mart Center Aug. 21

Joe Don Rooney, Gary LeVox , Jay DeMarcusCountry trio Rascal Flatts announced the first round of dates for its summer “Rewind” tour. The 36-city tour kicks off in St. Louis in May and will stop in Fresno Aug. 21 at the Save Mart Center.

To get a sense of Rascal Flatts’ popularity, both with fans and critics, there is this: The band is one of the most awarded country groups of the past decade. It has earned more than 40 awards from the ACAs, ACMs, AMAs, CMAs, People’s Choice Awards and more. It’s also one of the best-selling touring acts, of any genre. They have sold more than 7 million tickets since debuting in 2000. When they stopped at the Save Mart Center in 2006, more than 11,000 showed up. There were 10,000 tickets sold in 2008 and slightly more than that in 2009.

Pop/country songstress Sheryl Crow and country up-and-comers Gloriana join the tour. Tickets for the Fresno show are $27.25-$58.25, go on sale 10 a.m. Friday and are available at the box office, select Save Mart Supermarkets, online at or on the phone at (800) 745-3000.

Rascal Flatts just release an EP (a Walmart exclusive), which features “Rewind” and three other songs, including the previously unreleased “Dancing on My Grave.” The full album is slated for release on May 13.

Watch the official video for the song “Banjo” on the jump.

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Concert announcement: Blake Shelton at the Save Mart Center Sept. 11

sheltonCountry superstar and TV singing-competition coach Blake Shelton announced round two of his “Ten Times Crazier” tour, which includes a Sept. 11 date at the Save Mart Center.

Shelton, who’s been CMA’s best male vocalist for four consecutive years, is touring in support of the platinum-selling “Based on a Truth Story…,” which was released last March. The Band Perry, Neal McCoy, and Dan + Shay will join Shelton for the 20-plus dates, which includes shows at Madison Square Garden, Wrigley Field and the Hollywood Bowl.

“I cannot wait to get back out on the road,” says Shelton, who has been a judge on NBC’s “The Voice,” since its inception and has produced three of the show’s five winners. “I had so much fun playing songs from ‘Based On A True Story…’ and getting to see the crowd’s reaction to those songs was unforgettable. It is one of the most validating things for an artist like me, to have people sing along to your songs. It means what I’m doing is right and no matter what I’m doing, whether it is ‘The Voice’ or a TV special, absolutely nothing compares to playing live for me,” he says.

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Once again, Save Mart Center ranks among best venues in US

EPZ ICON SAVE MART SHEHADEYOne doesn’t need to read the trade publications to know just what a success the Save Mart Center has become since it opened, just over a decade ago. The 16,000-plus seat venue had become a crucial part of the Valley’s entertainment landscape and has landed its share of top-tier performers — The Rolling Stones, Madonna, Justin Bieber (at the height of Bieber fever).

If you did read the trade pubs, you would know the arena hosted 16 of 2013′s Top 100 tours, including Bon Jovi, Kenny Chesney, Jason Aldean, World Wrestling Entertainment, Carrie Underwood, Paramore, Jay Z, Tiesto and Jeff Dunham. Over all, the arena was ranked No. 52 in the U.S. and No. 98 in the world, as reported by Pollstar magazine. That is based on reported worldwide ticket sale.

The arena has ranked in the Top 100 Arena Venues Worldwide every year since 2004.

The industry publication Venues Today listed the Save Mart Center as a “Top Stop” for venues of its size last year. It was No. 5 in the U.S. and No. 12 worldwide (one of six SMG-managed venues to rank it the Top 20).

“Having recently completed our first decade of operating Save Mart Center, we are honored to have achieved consistent success and to be recognized among our industry peers,” said General Manager Steve Tadlock in a press release. “We look forward to the next decade of creating positive entertainment experiences and lasting memories for the community that has supported our efforts and this facility so well.”

And 2014 is shaping up nicely. The venue already has three big shows under its belt (Nitro Circus Live, Pink’s “Truth About Love” tour and WWE Live). This weekend’s Roadshow tour will surely be filled, as will stops by Lady Antebellum, Bruno Mars and the recently announced Tim McGraw show.

Concert announcement: Krush Groove featuring Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and more

krushgrooveThe Krush Groove showcase takes its name from the iconic 1985 movie about the early days of hip-hop. The fifth annual event, started by Los Angeles radio station 93.5 KDAY, announced an April 18 date at the Save Mart Center.

This will be a celebration of old-school rap and hip-hop, with some of heaviest hitters of the ’90s, including Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Redman and Method Man, DJ Quik, Too $hort, Daz and WC, Tha Eastsidaz, Jayo Felony and 2 II None.

Bone Thugs-N-Harmony‘s combination of rapid-fire rhymes and smooth harmonies earned the group a Grammy and helped them sell more than 50 million records. The Cleveland, Ohio five-piece are no strangers to Fresno. The group was part of the similarly themed West Coast Fest last summer and lobbied to have the tour kick-off in Fresno.

Tickets for Krush Groove are $29.50-$69.50 and on sale 10 a.m. Friday. They will be available online at the Save Mart Center box office, select Save Mart Supermarkets, on line at and or by calling (800) 745-3000.

Videos on the jump.

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Concert announcement: Tim McGraw’s “Sundown Heaven Town” tour heads to Save Mart Center

Country to CountryAs could be predicted, the Save Mart Center has lined-up another big-name country act for spring.

This time it’s Tim McGraw, who brings his “Sundown Heaven Town” tour to Fresno, May 8 at the Save Mart Center. Singer/songwriter Cassadee Pope will open.

Tickets for the show go on sale Feb. 7 and will range from $39.50-$72.50 and available through ticketmaster at select Save Mart Supermarket or the Save Mart Center box office. 

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You review: P!NK


A huge crowd turned out for last night’s P!NK show at the Save Mart Center. It was a fun, energetic and creative show. One part concert, one part performance art and one part Broadway production, the show took fans on a journey through the many aspects of love. I really loved it. P!NK sounded great and looked amazing. She is fierce, sassy and strong. I’d see her again in heartbeat.

I’d love to hear from others at the show. Share your reviews in the comments.

I’ve included a few photos I shot on my phone (not the greatest, I admit, but the best I can do since we weren’t able to get permission to have a professional photographer at the show.)

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Concert announcement: Bruno Mars’ ‘Moonshine Jungle Tour’ at the Save Mart Center

Music-Songs of the SummerIt’s shaping up to be a good year for fans of pop music down at the Save Mart Center. Pink’s “Truth About Love” tour is already on the book for later this month.

And just today pop-singer Bruno Mars announced dates for the North American leg of his “Moonshine Jungle tour.” It kicks off May 27 in Fresno.

Mars is a star on the rise. He was named Billboard magazine’s “2013 Artist of the Year,” and was among the top nominees for the upcoming Grammy Awards, with nods for both record and song of the year. He will also be headlining this year’s Super Bowl halftime show.

Ticket prices for the Fresno show have not been released, but tickets for all announced shows go on sale Feb. 3, to follow up on his half-time performance. You can find more info on his website.

Watch the official video for “When I was Your Man,” on the jump.

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7 picks for 7 days: Jan. 10-16

I’m getting back on track with the 7 picks for 7 days feature, a list of fun things to do over the next week. This week’s version — picks for today through next Thursday — offer a variety of entertainment, from acclaimed movies to new TV shows, theater and music.

Concert announcement: Pink’s “Truth About Love” tour

image003Another A-list pop-star is making her way to Fresno in 2014.
Pink announced today that the Save Mart Center will be included as one of the stops on her just-extended “Truth About Love Tour.”

She plays the arena Jan. 30. Tickets are $39.75, $69.75 and$ 99.75 and go on sale noon Saturday at

While Pink rose to fame in the early 2000s, she quickly set herself apart from what she saw as the “cookie cutter pop stars” of the time. In doing so, she has become a mega-star of her generation and has seen continued success. She was just nominated for two Grammy Awards, including Song of the Year, and named as the Woman of the Year by Billboard Magazine. She sold 886,000 albums in 2013.

7 picks for 7 days

OK, so after taking off a couple weeks, I’m back with a new round of 7 picks for 7 days – a list of fun thing to do each day Friday, Nov. 15 through Thursday, Nov. 21. This week’s picks include a hot country band live at the Save Mart Center, a touring Broadway musical at Saroyan Theatre and this month’s silent movie at the Warnors Theatre.

Win tickets to: Florida Georgia Line

There is still a month before Florida Georgia Line brings its “Here’s to the Good Times,” tour to the Save Mart Center. The 32-city tour is the first headlining tour for the band, which just won two Country Music Awards. Tickets for the Dec. 11 show are on sale at select Save Mart Supermarkets, online at or on the phone at 800-745-3000 or at the Save Mart Center Box Office, but we have a pair to give away to one lucky Beehiver reader.

To enter, just leave a comment on this post. Tell us what makes for a good time in your mind. The contest will run through Sunday. Winners will be chosen by random Monday morning and notified via email. So check your email if you enter. One comment per person, please.

Rules are on the jump.

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Win tickets to Paramore

The last time Fresno fans saw Paramore, it was as the opening act for No Doubt. When the band returns to the Save Mart Center on Tuesday, it will be on its own headlining tour, with a chart-topping album (“Paramore”) and hit single (“Still Into You).

The show should be solid throughout. Opening acts Metric and Hellogoodbye have some strong buzz these days.

We have a pair of tickets, we’ll give away to one lucky Beehiver.

To enter, just leave a comment on this post. We want to know your favorite Paramore song and why. The deadline to enter is 5 p.m. Monday. Winners will be chosen by random. One comment per person, please. I’ll be informing winners via email, so check yours.

Rules are on the jump.

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7 picks for 7 days

October is full of things to do, including these 7 picks for Oct. 17-23. From a silent film at the historic downtown Warnors Theatre to Fresno State Football, a beer festival and a big-time rock concert, these are some of the best bets for your entertainment.

Florida Georgia Line tickets on sale Friday

In July, country duo Florida Georgia Line announced that Fresno’s Save Mart Center would be part of its “Here’s to the Good Times” tour. The 32-city tour is the first headlining tour for the band, which had become popular in the last year. Its first single, “Cruise,” hit quadruple platinum.

Tickets for the Dec. 11 show go on sale 10 a.m. Friday at select Save Mart Supermarkets, online at or on the phone at 800-745-3000 or at the Save Mart Center Box Office. Prices are $29.75, $34.75 and $39.75.

Also on sale Friday: Professional Bull Riders, which brings its nationally televised”Built Ford Tour” series to the Save Mart Center March 29-30. The top 35 bull riders in the world will compete against the fiercest bucking bulls to earn toward the Professional Bull Riders World Championship. Tickets go on sale at noon and start at $18.

You review: Jason Aldean

WATERMARKThis was a big week for the Save Mart Center. On Tuesday the venue hosted Bon Jovi, who has proven to be one of heck of a popular band (and put on a good show, from the sound of it).

Last night, country singer Jason Aldean brought his Night Train tour to the arena. Fresno loves its country music and Aldean is a rising star. He sold out two nights at Boston’s Fenway Park, breaking the venue’s single- and two-night attendance records. So, did Fresno’s country loyalists turn out to see Aldean? If you were there, let us know.

How did Aldean stack up against other country acts who played recently? What about the openers Jake Owen, Thomas Rhett and Dee Jay Silver?

Tell us what you thought. And, be sure to check The Fresno Bee’s photo galleries for pictures of last night’s show.

Bandgeek: Christian Death, Korn and Andrew W.K.

69-elg (1)Sorry folks, the Korn show done sold out. So, you can stand in line to get some free tickets (maybe), or you can scratch that and opt for one of the dozen other music events happening this weekend.

Better yet, do both and report back next week.

Back from vacation, here is another installment of the weekly music roundup we call BANDGEEEEK!!


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You review: Bon Jovi

WATERMARKWhat Bon Jovi has done in the last decade is kind of amazing. While many of their contemporaries languished in classic rock purgatory, becoming so much reality-tv show fodder, these New Jersey boys managed to become the biggest band in the world (at least when looking at gross ticket sales).

Which means, its “Because We Can” tour (which stopped tonight at the Save Mart Center) has a lot to live up to. Here’s your chance to let us know if it did. If you were there, tell us all about the show. How was the set list? Did they play the hits? Was it all you hoped it would be, or was it, as at least one Tweet said, so bad people were leaving.

If you missed it, be sure to check out The Fresno Bee’s photo galleries for pictures from tonight’s show.