Keith Urban will light a fuse at First Niagara Pavilion Friday night.
There's competition in the ink scene. On the heels of Meeting of the Marked comes the Steel City Tattoo Convention, hosting its first gathering at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center Friday through Sunday.
There will be 200 artists tattooing all weekend, including Stephane Chaudesaigues, Kyle Dunbar, Jime Litwalk and James Vaughn. Artwork will be on display and merchandise for sale.
It runs from noon to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday. Admission $20 for one day; $30 for two and $40 for weekend. Children 12 and under free. www.shaneoneillproductions.com.
Gaslight Anthem doesn't win points for originality -- sounding quite a bit like some other New Jersey son -- but the former punk band led by Brian Fallon does bring lots of passion and grit to its heartland rock.
That explains why Gaslight, touring on its fourth album, "Handwritten," has sold out two nights at Mr. Smalls tonight and Friday.
The band is joined at 8 p.m. by two openers, The Sidekicks and Gates.
The summer-long parade of country music continues at the First Niagara Pavilion on Friday with Keith Urban's Light the Fuse Tour, backed by Little Big Town and Dustin Lynch.
The show coincides with the Australian singer's latest album, "Fuse," which features the single "Little Bit of Everything" and duets with Miranda Lambert ("We Were Us") and Eric Church ("Raise 'Em Up"). Production comes from power-pop artist Butch Walker and Stargate, who worked on "Black and Yellow."
"I'm more driven by where country could go than anything else," he told USA Today. "I make whatever records I make. I don't even think of them in terms of genre. They're just me and my sound. This album was seeing where I could take my sound and, in the process, maybe that's a particular kind of country music in 2014."
The show is at 7 p.m. Tickets are $25-$54.75; ticketmaster.com.
It's been a while since we've seen Rancid, the Bay Area band that helped keep punk alive in the early '90s.
Rancid, which took its cues from the Clash on songs like "Maxwell Murder," "Ruby Soho" and "Timebomb," does its first show here since releasing 2009's "Let the Dominoes Fall" at Stage AE.
Fans will get a double dose of frontman Tim Armstrong as he will also lead Tim Timebomb and Friends. The Interrupters open.
Doors are at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 to $27.50; ticketmaster.com.
Queens of the Stone Age, one of the louder bands on the circuit, has been awfully quiet lately as well.
Frontman Josh Homme was busy with Them Crooked Vultures and then slowed down by a routine knee surgery that laid him up for months. There was also a change of drummers and record labels.
Now, the premier stoner-rock band is back with its first album in six years, "... Like Clockwork," with contributions from Nick Oliveri and Mark Lanegan, Dave Grohl, Trent Reznor, Elton John and members of the Scissor Sisters and Arctic Monkeys.
The album topped the charts and has drawn rave reviews, including one from All Music Guide, which said, "It's complex, harder and catchier than anything QOTSA have done in a decade, and more song-oriented, too ..."
The band makes it to Stage AE Saturday with Guards. Doors at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $39.50. www.ticketmaster.com.
Austrian composer Hugo Wolf was a contemporary of such composers as Brahms, Wagner and Mahler, but unlike those composers he was known for his songs, including his "Italian Songbook."
Pittsburgh Song Collaborative will present the songbook at a concert in PNC Recital Hall at Mary Pappert School of Music at Duquesne University, 600 Forbes Ave., Uptown. The show features director Benjamin Binder with soprano Sari Gruber and baritone Daniel Teadt.
The concert starts at 7:30 p.m., and there is a $10 suggested donation. More at www.duq.edu/music or 412-396-6083.
Dancing for Terry
When the late Terry Lee returned to Pittsburgh in 2010 to host an oldies dance, listeners who grew up in the '60s and '70s turned out in full force to hear the former radio host. That led to regular appearances at Most Holy Name of Jesus in Troy Hill, which often sold out.
Lee died on July 30, but the dancing at Most Holy Name will continue in his memory. The first will be held Saturday. Lee's friend Joe Parknavy will DJ the dance, with music from the '50s through the '70s.
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the dance starts at 8 p.m. in the Most Holy Name School Hall. Tickets are $10 and are sold in advance only at Most Holy Name rectory -- 412-231-2994, ext. 3, and Attic Record Store in Millvale at 412-821-8484.
Citiparks presents "Alphabet Trail and Tales," a free early and elementary-age literacy event from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. for families at Blue Slide Playground in Frick Park, Squirrel Hill.
Features include a puppet parade, musical entertainment, historical storytellers, face painting, children's art activities and more. Details: 412-665-3665 or www.Citiparks.net.
Drop the Puck
The Pittsburgh Celebrity Hockey Team will play a game as part of the "Drop the Puck" grand opening celebration of the Pittsburgh Ice Arena in New Kensington on Saturday.
The celebration, from noon to 5 p.m., marks the renovations of the former Valley Ice Arena at 700 Craigdell Road. It's home to the Alain Lemieux Hockey Academy, run by the former Pittsburgh Penguins player who is the older brother of Penguins great and team owner Mario Lemieux.
Alain Lemieux is to be on hand, as are former Penguins Phil Borque and Pierre Larouche. There will be giveaways, skills competitions, a family skate, the Jeff Jimerson Band and The X 105.9 FM will broadcast live. Proceeds benefit local emergency responders.
The celebrity game, hosted by Paul Steigerwald and featuring well-known media and hockey people, runs from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Details: http://pittsburghicearena.net.
The Strip District World Festival on Saturday and Sunday is a multicultural celebration with food, crafts and entertainment on Penn Avenue, from 22nd to 25th streets, and the parking lot between 22nd and 23rd streets. The music lineup features:
Saturday: Henry Doktorski, German and Polish songs on accordion (11:30 a.m.); Liz Vitalbo, Italian songs (1:30 p.m.); Kenny Blake jazz (3 p.m.); Glory Days Bruce Springsteen tribute (5 p.m.).
Sunday: Mark Guiser, Irish music (11:30 a.m.); Chinese Lion Dance (12:30 p.m.); Freedom Band, reggae (1 p.m.); Jumpin' Jack Flash Rolling Stones tribute (3 p.m.); Dancing Queen, disco (5 p.m.).
• The Future Tenant Art Space (819 Penn Ave., Downtown) is starting out its biannual "Trespass Series" today through Saturday with the return of John Zobele and "RRRECYLE BIN." Every night from 6-9 p.m. you can check out the self-described "digital collective of reborn art" that features artists around the world, which is, according to RRRECYCLE BIN's website, "a loud, flashy and new audio visual experience." It's also free. More at http://futuretenant.org.
• Pittsburgh Shakespeare in the Parks presents "Romeo & Juliet" directed by Helen M. Meade at Arsenal Park, Lawrenceville, at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Performances are free to the public, with audience donations accepted. www.pittsburghshakespeare.com.
• GWAR and Hatebreed team up for what is certain to be a crushing show at Mr. Smalls at 8 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $29.50. www.mrsmalls.com.