Sat., June 22, JD McPherson
Mondavi Center, 7 p.m., $17.50-$35
Like Eli “Paperboy” Reed, JD McPherson is a canny throwback crooner, mixing rockabilly with swinging '50s R&B. The Oklahoma native got a Master of Fine Arts degree from University of Tulsa and was teaching elementary-school art when layoffs forced his hand. Demos earned him a small label deal, and the father of two took his shot. Three years later, Signs & Signifiers has been rereleased on a major label, and McPherson has been all over various late-night TV programs. The 36-year-old blends Buddy Holly's earnest rock simplicity, energetic blues rags and modern sensibilities, such as a droning guitar—similar to the Smiths on “How Soon Is Now?”—which opens the title track. 9399 Old Davis Road, www.jdmcpherson.com.