Brian Setzer rocks Christmas at Celebrity Theatre - East Valley Tribune: Performance

Brian Setzer rocks Christmas at Celebrity Theatre

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Posted: Friday, December 14, 2012 9:09 am | Updated: 11:40 am, Fri Dec 14, 2012.

Danny Zelisko presents Brian Setzer’s Christmas Rocks! Extravaganza, with special guest Totsy, at 8 p.m. Tuesday at Celebrity Theatre.  

Get ready for big-brass pizzazz, jump-blues boogie and rockabilly when three-time Grammy Award winner Brian Setzer and his 18-piece orchestra take the stage. Known as a “Musician’s Musician,” Setzer is credited with consistently taking chances with innovative and daring musical styles, while resurrecting rockabilly in the 1980s and swing in the 1990s.

The singer-guitarist first rose to prominence in the early ’80s as the frontman for rockabilly revivalists the Stray Cats. The group scored several chart-topping hits before disbanding, including “Rock This Town” and “Stray Cat Strut.” He then formed the swing-reviving Brian Setzer Orchestra in the early ’90s, and the group made its record debut in 1994. When the rock climate of the late ’90s allowed for a spirited retro-swing revival, Setzer became a commercial force again with a cover of Louis Prima’s “Jump, Jive ‘An Wail,” a smash hit from his top 10 “Dirty Boogie” LP. The fad did little to expand jazz’s hardcore audience, but Setzer’s band gained noticeable momentum that would help it remain economically viable through the 2000s.

If that wasn’t enough, Setzer took it upon himself to transform into the Jack Frost of jump guitar for the holiday season, spreading swingin’ yuletide cheer to only the coolest cats. The result: three best-selling holiday albums (“Boogie Woogie Christmas,” “Dig That Crazy Christmas,” “Christmas Rocks!: The Best Of Collection”) and an annual Christmas tour.

Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets ($60 and $75) are available at Celebrity Theatre or online at To charge by phone, call 602-267-1600, Ext. 1. Celebrity Theatre is located four blocks south of the Loop 202 freeway, at 440 N. 32nd St., in Phoenix.

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