Zac Brown Band Plays First Niagara; “Fences” Continues Run at Pittsburgh Playwrights (Sun., 5/24/15)

1) Do eight-piece country-rock outfit The Zac Brown Band have the best display of facial hair in music? Their seven diversely styled beards and one clean-shaven chin are coming to town to promote their Jekyll + Hyde album, released on April 28. The aptly titled album, the band’s fourth, features a diversity of musical styles as well, as demonstrated by collaborations with both Sara Bareilles and Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell. The Zac Brown Band song, “Heavy is the Head,” with Cornell was primarily released to rock radio stations and not country. The move was a good one as the song currently sits atop the Billboard chart for Mainstream Rock Songs. A rare cross genre feat. Wax your whiskers and check them out at First Niagara Pavilion. 7 p.m. 665 Route 18, Burgettstown.

2) One does not have to be a baseball fan to appreciate August Wilson’s Fences. Set in the 1950s, the play concerns a former star who missed a shot at the Major Leagues because his prime years came before the color line was broken. But as in all Wilson plays, while the shadow of the past hangs over the action, the story revolves around the drama and humor of the characters’ tangled personal lives as they try to build a future. Fences won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the Tony Award for Best Play in 1987. Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company gives it a new production in the group’s intimate downtown space, which is ideal for conveying Wilson’s intimate style. 3 p.m. Runs through May 30. 937 Liberty Ave., Cultural District.

3) Our beloved Buccos take the diamond again today against the New York Mets. It’s also Kids Day, with a Family Fun Zone outside the ball yard beforehand, and all fans 14 and under have a chance to run the bases after the game and will receive a Kids Gerrit Cole Replica Camo Jersey. First pitch is at 1:35 p.m. PNC Park, 115 Federal St., North Shore.

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Rick Handler

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