Don’t look now, but not only has “Weird Al” Yankovic scored the first Billboard popchart-topping comedy album in all of human history — and not only has the MTV-era novelty act entered his fourth decade of performing with the polished legitimacy of three Grammy awards — but his amiable brand of parody has far outlasted the prime-time careers of many of those whose momentary hits he tweaked for posterity.
It’s a growing group that includes Toni Basil, Gerardo, Men Without Hats, the Offspring, Tiffany, Tone Loc, and (arguably) Usher, Beck, and Madonna. With his accordion as his axe, the artist brings his Mandatory World Tour to Red Bank’s Count Basie stage on Tuesday, July 28, still surfing the momentum generated by his year-old Mandatory Fun album and its savvy takes on hits by Pharrell Williams, Iggy Azalea and Lorde.
It’s a big show that promises to make the most of the historic venue’s charm and dimension — all put forth with an unflagging energy, and a goofy humor guaranteed not to offend anyone this side of Coolio (who, last we looked, was playing a bowling alley in Asbury Park).
Take it here for tickets ($39 – $79, with VIP options ranging up to a not-joking $260 per person) — and take it to the flipside for more Grammy-graced excitement.
Speaking of multiple Grammy go-getters: it’s going on 20 years now since Rob Thomas launched his hitmaking career from the platform of the on-again, off-again Matchbox Twenty, and while many of his 1990s chart-topping contemporaries have cut to the summer-oldies chase, been relegated to the cutout bin, or cut themselves out of the game entirely, Thomas remains a bankable attraction on the greater Green and beyond. The singer, songwriter and founder of the animal rescue Sidewalk Angels Foundation has lent his pop instincts to collaborations with Hall of Fame heavyweights (Carlos Santana, Mick Jagger, Willie Nelson, Stevie Wonder), and a high-profile mentoring gig on TV’s The Voice that left fans and producers wanting more.
But it’s as a solo act that Thomas returns to the Basie boards on July 31 and August 1, joined by opening act Plain White T’s, in an encore of his 2014 two-night-stand of “special intimate performances.” Reserve tickets ($89-$129) right here for Friday’s 8 pm show, or here for the Saturday night sequel.