First Night Pittsburgh 2015 Celebration; Girl Talk at Stage AE (CPs Wed., 12/31/14)

1) Highmark First Night Pittsburgh 2015 is the biggest New Year’s Eve party in the ‘Burg, and happening all over the Downtown’s Golden Triangle. This year’s celebration features The Swon Brothers, a country music duo who came in third place on the fourth season of NBC’s “The Voice.” The entertainment and attractions lined up for First Night are amazing: bands, dancers, comedians, balloon-animal creators, acoustic musicians, dance lessons, buskers, caricature artists, face painters, clowns, puppets, storytellers, sports mascots, theatrical performances, large scale games, fire performers and ice carvers. Oh, and of course, fireworks! Events start at 6 p.m. and go until midnight. Visit Highmark First Night Pittsburgh 2015 for details.

2) Girl Talk has released five albums without playing a single instrument (unless you count “laptop” as an instrument). This anomaly is easily explained—Girl Talk’s albums consist entirely of samples, sometimes over 300 of them. Gregg Gillis, the man behind Girl Talk, shuffles these samples to create genre-spanning mash-ups, all of which are highly dance-able. A Pittsburgher, Gillis worked as a bio-medical engineer before quitting his day job to pursue music full-time. The 2014 Broken Ankles EP saw Girl Talk collaborating with Philadelphia’s Freeway, with the former providing the beats and the latter the rhymes. The release has left listeners salivating for another full-length Girl Talk LP, the last of which was 2010’s All Day. Perhaps he’ll drop one digitally, as he has in the past, to coincide with his New Year’s Eve show, which is taking place tonight at Stage AE. Doors open 8 p.m. Opening artists are Freeway and The Gotobeds. This event is SOLD OUT, but tickets may be found on ticket reseller sites. 400 North Shore Dr., North Shore.

3) The Penguins take on the Carolina Hurricanes tonight at Consol Energy Center. Let’s hope the Penguins can beat the mumps and the ‘Canes. 7 p.m. 1001 Fifth Ave., Uptown.