A few heroes from the early days of hip-hop will trade rhymes at a show this weekend in the city. Doug E. Fresh, Slick Rick, Big Daddy Kane and Biz Markie will be among those on the bill -- quite a lineup of classic rap artists.
8 p.m. Saturday, March 29, at the Chicago Theatre, 175 N. State St., Chicago. Tickets start at $59; thechicagotheatre.com.
The Orwells were still teenagers when they emerged from Elmhurst last year with the celebrated record "Remember When," a showcase for the band's snotty, witty brand of punk. Since then, the band has won admirers from coast to coast, played Lollapalooza and appeared on "The Late Show with David Letterman." The band's music still rocks, but it's growing more sophisticated, and singer Mario Cuomo has become a mesmerizing frontman. The band is touring now behind its recent EP, "Who Needs Who," with up-and-coming Chicago rockers Twin Peaks. Not bad for a garage band from the suburbs!
7 p.m. Tuesday, April 1, at Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln, Chicago. $14; lincolnhallchicago.com.
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Missouri band Ha Ha Tonka has always blurred the lines between the indie- and roots-rock genres. The band's latest (and best) record, "Lessons," features plenty of rustic touches -- mandolin, warm vocal harmonies -- along with the distorted guitar and idiosyncratic songs structures you'd expect from bands like the Arcade Fire. Ha Ha Tonka (named after a Missouri state park) will play in the suburbs next week.
8 p.m. Thursday, April 3, at the Raue Center for the Arts, 26 N. Williams, Crystal Lake. $25; rauecenter.org.