Dapper R&B crooner John Legend, who performs Saturday at Harrah’s Tunica Casino, has been in the news of late for reasons at best tangentially related to his solo music career.
He’s appeared in cooking shows with his wife, supermodel Chrissy Teigen, whom he married in September, and served as a judge on the TV music competition “Duets.” He remains engaged in a variety of charitable causes, including the recent “Chimes For Change” campaign to raise awareness of women’s issues. And he’s been involved in some high-profile side projects, such as Wake Up!, a collaboration with the Roots on an album of civil rights movement-era soul music, and the soundtrack to the film “12 Years a Slave,” which Legend curated.
But in August, Legend finally gave fans that swooned over his 2004 Grammy-winning debut Get Lifted a treat with the release of his fourth studio album, Love In the Future. Executive produced by Legend, longtime collaborator Kanye West, and Dave Tozer, the record is Legend’s first solo work in five years. The album, which features guest appearances by Rick Ross and Seal, has received strong reviews, with The New York Times praising the singer’s “new grit” and Rolling Stone lauding the record’s “plush, nuanced palette to match his signature emotional generosity and strong sensuality.”
Legend’s “Made to Love” tour features an opening performance by Tamar Braxton. The youngest sister of R&B star Toni Braxton, Tamar starred in the ’90s sister group the Braxtons and released a solo album in 2000. Now she is using her role in the WE TV reality programs “Braxton Family Values” and “Tamar & Vince” to jump-start her music career, releasing her sophomore solo disc, Love and War, in September.
Harrah’s Casino Tunica
13615 Old Hwy. 61 N., Tunica, Miss.
Show time is 8 p.m. Tickets are $34.50, $44.50, $54.50 and $64.50. Tickets are available at the box office and through Ticketmaster. For more information, call 800-946-4946 or visit harrahstunica.com
Also In Tunica This Week
Birth years given for Mississippi bluesman Bobby Rush are all over the place; the date — Nov. 10 — remains the same, but there are published sources for the year that range from 1935 to 1940. And the man himself, eternally youthful no matter his age, doesn’t usually offer up an answer.
So we’ll just have to take at their word organizers of an 80th birthday party for Rush on Saturday at Tunica’s Resorts Casino (1100 Casino Strip Blvd., Tunica Resorts, Miss.). Besides Rush — who is also performing with Denise LaSalle, Otis Clay and Latimore the next day at the fourth annual Red, White and Blues Jam saluting military personnel — the celebration will feature performances by LaSalle, Karen Wolfe, Sheba Potts-Wright and Sweet Angel.
Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $32 and are available at the hotel front desk and by phone at 866-706-7070. Visit resortstunica.com for more information.
Tickets to the Red, White and Blues Jam are $35 and are available online at redwhiteandbluesjam.com.
Finally, love him or hate him, Kenny G returns to Tunica on Saturday for a show at Gold Strike Casino’s Millennium Theater (1010 Casino Center Drive, Tunica Resorts, Miss.).
The smooth-jazz icon has sold more than 75 million records since stepping out from Barry White’s horn section to become a solo artist 30 years ago. But in that same time he’s also become the butt of almost as many jokes thanks his long, curly locks and mild-mannered sound.
To his credit, the good-humored saxophonist, whose latest release is Namaste, a 2011 collaboration with Indian musicians Rahul Sharma, takes the kidding in stride, even starring in a recent Snickers commercial that made fun of his image.
Show time is 8 p.m. Tickets, $59.95 and $69.95, available at the gift shop, by phone at 888-747-7711, and through Ticketmaster. Call 662-357-1111 or visit goldstrike.com.