The Tuscaloosa Amphitheater continues its busiest-ever month this weekend with shows by country quartet Little Big Town Friday, and "musical brand" Kidz Bop Saturday.
The week after, Pentatonix opens the hottest week of them all Aug. 22, with Mary J. Blige and Nas playing the Amp Aug. 25. Those will serve as bookends to the first Druid City Music Festival, Aug. 23-24, not in the Amp, but in venues running through Tuscaloosa, including Government Plaza for the closing day, with headlining acts Big Boi, Blackberry Smoke and more.
Little Big Town, with origins at Birmingham's Samford University, will be joined by opener Midland. The Friday show starts at 8 p.m., with gates opening at 6:30.
Karen Fairchild met Kimberly Roads (later Schlapman) while at Samford in 1997. They moved to Nashville as a duo, then teamed with Jimi Westbrook and Phillip Sweet as Little Big Town, swapping out on lead and harmony vocals. Fairchild and Westbrook have been married since 2006.
Little Big Town's eponymous 2002 album held charting hits “Don’t Waste My Time” and “Everything Changes," but their true break came with the 2005 platinum-selling disc “The Road to Here,” which yielded hits "Boondocks," “Bring It on Home,” “Good as Gone” and “A Little More You.” After signing with Capitol Nashville, Little Big Town scored No. 1 and platinum-selling albums such as “The Reason Why,” “Tornado,” “Pain Killer” and “The Breaker.” Their No. 1 hits include “Pontoon,” “Girl Crush” and “Better Man," along with dozens of other charting singles, including “Little White Church,” “Tornado” and “Day Drinking.”
The country-rock Midland formed in Dripping Springs, Texas in 2016, and has scored top 40 hits with “Drinkin’ Problem,” “Make a Little” and “Burn Out.” Midland's current single "Mr. Lonely" broke into top 40 country charts.
Any tickets remaining are available at the amphitheater box office, through Ticketmaster.com or by calling 800-745-3000, at $69.50 for the general admission pit, and $59.50, $49.50 and $25 for tiers of reserved seating; fees and service charges will be added.
Kidz Bop is pretty much what it sounds: children singing pop songs. It began as album-only concepts in 2001, covering then-current hits by Smash Mouth, Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, NSYNC, Christina Aguilera, Cher, Barenaked Ladies and others. The concept's not been without controversy for repackaging songs with censored lyrics while not changing intent or meaning, such as Luis Fonsi's raunchy, sexualized "Despacito."
Owners of the concept began taking it out on tours in 2007, with children dancing and singing to pop arrangements backed by a live band. The "Kidz Bop 39" album came out in January. This summer's touring lineup includes seven children ranging in age from 10-14.
Saturday's performance begins at 6 p.m., with gates opening at 5. Any tickets remaining are on sale at the usual outlets for $25, $35, $45, $55 and $65, not counting service charges and other fees.
For more, see www.tuscaloosaamphitheater.com.