Band: The Stone Pony Band, featuring the Northcoast Horns (www.stoneponyband.com)
Hometown: "I've got a wife and kids in Baltimore, Jack, but this town is our town."
Sounds like: "Bruce Springsteen and Southside Johnny rumbled in an alley with Michael Stanley and Bob Seger, and the Chicago horn section won."
Fun fact: "One night on a lonely highway in Indiana, the band's tour bus was seized by an alien ship. Most of the band has no memory of the goings on that bizarre evening, but whenever it comes up at practice, the sax player gets all quiet and then starts to giggle uncontrollably."
Playing: Saturday, April 1, at House of Blues
Why you should see them: "This is going to be the party of the century (as long as the sax player takes his meds)." -- "Vegas" Vic Manfredi, bass
Band: Roué (www.roue.org /www.myspace.com/roue)
Sounds like: "Us gettin' with your girl."
Fun fact: John Kalman could've been a lawyer, but he gave it up to make the big bucks in an indie/underground punk band, which is not the same as a hard-rock band."
Playing: Saturday, April 1, at the Jigsaw, with Interfuse, Short Rabbits, and Donner Party Leftovers
Why you should see them: "Onstage haircuts, snow angels, feathers, broken glass, turtleneck sweaters, bananas, and of course, skin-tight buffoonery." -- Justin Coulter, band member
Band: Rare Blend (www.rareblend.net)
Sounds like: "Rare Blend is where rock, jazz, fusion, and world music collide!"
Playing: Saturday, April 1, at the Winchester, at WCSB-FM's Fusion Show Live
Why you should see them: "Pulling from a variety of influences and musical styles to write unique instrumental arrangements, Rare Blend's music appeals to purists as well as those who embrace a progressive multi-genre approach to original music." -- Victor Samalot, guitars
Band: 2nd Half (www.2ndhalf.cc, http://www.myspace.com/2ndhalf)
Sounds like: "2nd Half, 311, Green Day."
Fun fact: "We are a two-piece band that nobody ever paid attention to until you told us to write a fun fact. Thank you."
Playing: Friday, March 31, at the Lime Spider, Akron
Why you should see them: "Because we have an amazing video show to go along with all your favorite 2nd Half songs." -- Ed, guitar and vocals