Matt Hires comes by his musical passion honestly — his first guitar was homemade, given to him by his father. The Tampa native still plays the instrument. Fronting a group called Brer, he caught the attention of a major label. With influences like Bob Dylan, Sufjan Stevens and Wilco, Hires’ debut EP, Live From the Hotel Cafe, earned comparisons to Jack Johnson, Matt Kearney and John Mayer. His first full-length, last summer’s Take Us to the Start, attracted a growing fan base through opening gigs with Dave Matthews, O.A.R and Marc Broussard, as well as high-profile song placements on Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice and Cougar Town. With an atmospheric blend of traditional folk and contemporary pop (not to mention a string of sold-out dates on his current tour), Hires’ future is so bright that shades are a given. He plays the Beachland Ballroom (15711 Waterloo Rd., 216.383.1124, beachlandballroom.com) at 8 p.m. Jason Castro and Caitlin Crosby open. Tickets: $10. — Brian Baker
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