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The weekend's best concerts: Dec. 6-8

J.S. Ondara

J.S. Ondara Josh Cheuse

I made this joke on Twitter and a lot of people groaned, so I'm recycling it here: If Bong Joon-ho's new movie was playing at drive-ins, you could see Parasite by the dashboard lights.

Friday 12.6

Bobby Lyle @ Crooners
Lyle and the multiple venues at Crooners are a fortuitous fit. The Minneapolis native is best known as a smooth jazz icon and R&B-tinged keyboardist from his ’80s and ’90s discs on Atlantic. But he’s deeper than that, as he’ll demonstrate with a solo show on the majestic Steinway in the intimate Dunsmore Room, followed by a separate engagement in the larger Crooners Main Stage area, where he’ll shift between B-3 organ and various electric and acoustic keyboards with a trio. Also Saturday. Solo performance at 6 p.m. ($20). Trio show at 7:30 p.m. ($20-$30). 6161 Highway 65 NE, Minneapolis. More info here.—Britt Robson

Amy Grant & Michael W. Smith @ Target Center
Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith know the dates for the holiday season: the two Christian rock megastars start their co-billed Christmas tour right after Thanksgiving, exactly when it stops being tasteless to play Christmas music on the radio. Their set will draw on their many respective Christmas albums, a vast repertoire of hymns, orchestral standards, and original songs about just how enthusiastically they love the Yuletide. With Marc Martel. 6:30 p.m. $33-$78. 600 N 1st Ave. More info here.—Lucas Fagen

Samantha Fish @ Fine Line
Kansas City blues rocker Samantha Fish’s new album, Kill or Be Kind, is her strongest to date, and follows multiple seismic changes. She moved to New Orleans, signed with major roots label Rounder, hooked up with vet producer Scott Billington, co-wrote with the likes of Jim McCormick and Parker Millsap, recorded with studio pros, and even added horns. The disc builds on her considerable strengths as a soulful singer and deft guitarist, cultivating a Memphis vibe with more potent hooks and even vintage girl-group touches. Mark Joseph & The American Soul opens. 18+. 7:30 p.m. $20—25. 318 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis. More info here.—Rick Mason

The Motet @ First Avenue

Led by drummer Dave Watts, the Motet has been conjuring wicked grooves for two decades, exploring funk, soul, Afrobeat, and jazz, with a particular ’70s influence. Building on threads from the likes of James Brown, War, the Meters, P-Funk and Prince, the septet winds sinewy guitar, simmering keyboards, blustery horns and Lyle Divinsky’s soul-deep vocals around twitchy, infectious, dance-inducing rhythms. The band thrives on extensive live jams, whose jumping off points are its nine albums, including this year’s sparkling Death or Devotion. Exmag opens. 18+. 7 p.m. $20. 701 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis. More info here.—Rick Mason

Complete Friday music listings here.

Saturday 12.7

Deadmau5 @ Armory
Deadmau5 specializes in straightahead progressive house, bouncy and hypnotic, punctuated by occasional experiments in trance (“Strobe”) or noise (“Survivalism”) or contrived social commentary (“The Veldt”). Yet it’s the slick impersonal crunch of his default musical template that sounds most warmly emotional, even benevolent and kindly in a ghostly, robotic way. He performs inside a big glowing, rotating cube. With Mad Zach and K?D. 18+. 8:00 p.m. $55-$185+. 500 S 6th St. More info here.—Lucas Fagen

Sunny Sweeney @ Cabooze
Like most country singers, Sunny Sweeney gets both rowdy and introspective, but her talent is for confounding the categories. Her party songs come from a place of concealed pain (“Better Bad Idea”), while her ballads abound with puns, self-mocking asides, luxuriating in misery as a way of laughing at herself (“Pass the Pain”). Her Christmas show will presumably be jollier. With Alex Williams. 18+. 8 p.m. $20/$25. 917 Cedar Ave. More info here.—Lucas Fagen 

JS Ondara @ First Avenue
Obsessed with American folk and rock music, Ondara emigrated from Nairobi, Kenya to the U.S. and landed in Minneapolis due to his love of Bob Dylan. Six years later his major-label debut American Dream chronicles the highs and lows of watching dreams distort into reality. The title track and “God Bless America” nimbly up-end the implied feel-good premise of the immigrant saga, but ultimately Ondara is out to make a dent as a sweet, soulful singer-songwriter more than he is trying to call out injustice or change the world. And is succeeding on those terms. 7 p.m. Sold out. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis. More info here.—Britt Robson

Complete Saturday music listings here.

Sunday 12.8

Blackalicious @ Turf Club
Sacramento rap duo Gift of Gab and Chief Xcel like tongue-twisters, political commentary, tricky beats, and old-school keyboard hooks. Their rich, kaleidoscopic sonic palette draws on countless black pop styles. Reunited after a decade-long hiatus, they’re currently touring to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their first full-length album, 1999’s Nia. With Heiruspecs. Rescheduled from Aug. 25 to Dec. 8. All original tickets will be honored. 21+. 7 p.m. $25/$28. 1601 University Ave., St. Paul More info here.—Lucas Fagen 

Complete Sunday music listings here.