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Ani DiFranco, Big Head Todd coming to Milwaukee this January

A pair of alternative touchstone artists will be in Milwaukee less than two weeks apart, as Ani DiFranco and Big Head Todd & the Monsters swing through town in January.

Big Head Todd & the Monsters | Jan. 15 @ Turner Hall Ballroom

Since breaking out in 1993 with their platinum-selling album Sister Sweetly, Big Head Todd & the Monsters have spent three decades steadily touring, recording and racking up fairly unique experiences. 

They’ve crossed off quite a few impressive bucket-list items, including playing Red Rocks, and sitting in with blues legends John Lee Hooker and B.B. King. But then things get a little far out. The Colorado band performed in the Denver Broncos championship parade following Super Bowl 50, and have crossed paths with NASA a couple times thanks to their song, “Blue Sky.”

After writing the track in 2005 following a request from the crew of the Space Shuttle Discovery, the band stopped by mission control to beam an acoustic performance of the song into space — the first live wake-up call in the program’s history.

Fortunately, you won’t need to go nearly as far to hear them. Tickets for the Sunday night show at Turner Hall Ballroom are on sale right now onlineand at the Pabst/Riverside box offices.

Ani DiFranco | Jan. 25 @ the Pabst Theater

DiFranco has gone her own way since day one of her career. In 1989, at the age of 19, she started her own record company: Righteous Babe Records. More than 30 years later, she released her 20th album on that label, Revolutionary Love.

In part because of that independence, DiFranco hasn’t shied away from bringing her music and artistic perspective to social and political causes. In addition to being nominated for eight Grammy Awards, the National Organization for Women in 2006 gave her a Woman of Courage Award, making her the first musician to receive the honor.

DiFranco will be in good company for her show at the Pabst, with Peter Mulvey and SistaStrings opening the night’s entertainment. Tickets are on sale now online and at the Pabst/Riverside box offices.