Jazz and soul legend to tour

It's a grand old venue for a grand old dame - legendary songwriter Roberta Flack heads to our shores, playing Auckland's Civic Theatre next year.

The Grammy Award-winning singer will play three New Zealand dates, including the Civic Theatre on February 24, Wellington Town Hall on February 25 and Christchurch Town Hall on February 27.

At 71, the former child protege has influenced the work of dozens of artists, including Alicia Keys, the Black Eyed Peas, Lauren Hill and more.

In 1974, Flack claimed the Grammy Award for record of the year, with her hit Killing Me Softly With His Song, marking a back-to-back win after the previous year's record The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face also scored the prize.

Tickets to all three shows go on sale Thursday, December 4 from The Edge (Auckland) and Ticketek (Wellington, Christchurch).

Also Downunder next year, Talking Heads founding member David Byrne will play two New Zealand shows in February.

Promoting his new album Everything That Happens Happens Today, due out this week, Byrne will perform an assortment of old and new music, taken from his years working with Brian Eno.

After producing three Talking Heads albums, Eno returned to work with Byrne for the first time in 25 years to produce his new album.

The tour, titled Songs of David Byrne and Brian Eno will stop at Wellington's Michael Fowler Centre on February 13 and Auckland's Aotea Centre on February 14.

Tickets go on sale next Wednesday, December 3 from The Edge (Auckland) and Ticketek (Wellington).

Not content with playing the biggest festival of the year, workhorses The Arctic Monkeys have announced two Big Day Out side shows when they visit in January.

Following in the wake of their superb sell-out tour in 2006, the Sheffield lads will play Wellington's Town Hall on January 13, before playing Auckland's Powerstation on Thursday, January 15.

With two chart-topping albums behind them, the Mercury Prize winners are one of the main draws of next year's Big Day Out line-up.

Tickets to both side shows go on sale Friday, December 5 from Ticketek. Big Day Out tickets are on sale now.

Brighton punks Peter and the Test Tube Babies also stop in for a summer tour, ringing in the New Year at Auckland's King's Arms, before heading to New Plymouth's Basement Bar on January 2 and then on to Christchurch.

Earlybird tickets are $40, on sale now through Ticketek and Real Groovy.

Also cashing in on Aotearoa's golden summer, surfer/songwriter Donovan Frankenreiter will play two seaside shows in January.

Frankenreiter will join Little Bushman at the Mangawhai Tavern on January 10, before meeting up with Katchafire at the Waihi Beach Hotel on January 11.

Tickets go on sale today from Ticketmaster.

Finally, the Stray Cats Farewell Tour has changed dates - it will now take place on Tuesday, March 3 at Auckland's Powerstation.

- NZ Herald

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