Music Notebook: Eric Church plays at Pechanga Arena on Friday. What “classic San Diego songs” could he do here?

How is hard rocker Eric Church different from other country music stars?

Last year, he posed for the cover of a weekly national music industry magazine while getting a COVID-19 shot.

This year, he canceled his sold-out April 2 concert in San Antonio so he could attend a Final Four basketball game in New Orleans.

As a songwriter, Church tackles issues few country artists tackle, whether it’s the death penalty (“Lightning”), a teenage couple awaiting the results of a pregnancy test (“Two Pink Lines”) or the pain that hateful rhetoric can cause (“Kill a Word”).

On tour, when the mood arises, he performs songs by artists from the city in which he plays (“Johnny B. Goode” by Chuck Berry and “Country Grammar” and “Ride Wit Me” by Nelly during his concert on March 12 in Saint-Louis. concert). It’s a crowd-pleasing decision that everyone from Patti Smith has chosen Taylor Swift over the years, but they did it with one song, not many.

So what “San Diego songs” could Church do for his Friday night gig at Pechanga Arena?

Here are some suggestions:

“San Diego Serenade” by Tom Waits, “Angel Baby” by Rosie & The Originals, “Peaceful Easy Feeling” by Jack Tempchin, “Road to Escondido” by JJ Cale and Eric Clapton and, of course, “In-A- Gadda” by Iron Butterfly. -Da Vida.

There is at least one other attractive option.

Since Church’s April concerts featured a Bruce Springsteen classic each night right before Church’s 2012 hit, “Springsteen,” he could up the ante here singing “Balboa Park” by The Boss. and “Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)”, the latter including the choice verse: “I know a nice little place in Southern California, down from San Diego…”

8 p.m. Friday. Pechanga Arena, 3500 Sports Arena Blvd., Midway District. $34 to $164.

The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble of San Diego will celebrate the release of their fourth album with a concert on Saturday at the Downtown Quartyard for all ages.

(Lois Fong-Sakai / Jade Coast Photography / Courtesy of Tim Felten)

Sure Fire Soul Ensemble CD Release Concert, featuring Mitchum Yacoub, Drug Hunt and Gonzo Light Show

let’s celebrate now its 10th anniversary, San Diego’s Surefire Soul Ensemble specializes in creating percolating grooves that almost defy the audience to stop spinning.

Equally adept at vintage soul-jazz, Afro-beat, New Orleans funk and more, the nine-piece band is led by keyboardist Tim Felten and anchored by the propulsive drums of Jake Najor.

On Saturday, the brass ensemble will celebrate the April 1 release of their fourth album, “Step Down,” with an all-ages outdoor concert downtown that’s likely to be as much a dance marathon as a concert.

5 p.m. Saturday. The Quartyard, 1301 Market St., downtown. $22.72.

Kacho and Mongo from Son Rompe Pera

Kacho and Mongo from Son Rompe Pera perform during day two of Vive Latino 2022 in Mexico City. The marimba-powered band performs Sunday in San Diego at the Casbah.

(Media and Media / Getty Images)

Son Rompe Pera, with Bite Me Bambi, Cumbia Machin and DJ Ana Bro

Hailing from Mexico City, Son Rompe Pera are probably the only band to use a marimba as their main instrument while fusing Jamaican punk, garage-rock and ska with Colombian cumbia music.

Co-led by brothers Jesús “Kacho” Gama and Allan “Mongo” Gama, the group breathes new life into classics such as “Cumbia Algarrobera” by Venezuelan organist Tulio Enrique León and “Los Chucos Suaves” by Mexican pioneer Lalo Guerrero folk music.

Admittedly, Son Rompe Pera, an infectious enthusiasm, is unlikely to trigger a widespread cumbia-friendly “marimba rock” movement on either side of the border. But the group adds a refreshing twist to several musical traditions while championing enduring songs from other artists across Latin America.

8:30 p.m. Sunday. The Casbah, 2501 Kettner Blvd., Middletown.

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