Friday’s music picks: Kool & the Gang, Stay Gold anniversary

Kool & the Gang are at ACL Live.

Kool & the Gang are at ACL Live.

Kool & the Gang at ACL Live. When they played the Urban Music Festival two years ago, bassist Robert “Kool” Bell was one of three original members of the Gang who performed. The two vocalists were hired guns who looked like their combined ages might total the 50 years the group’s been cranking out jams. It didn’t matter. Kool & the Gang’s strength is being a relentless, go-for-broke, groove-making machine. They pulled out the big guns of funk, “Jungle Boogie” and “Hollywood Swinging,” slow jams like “Cherish” and timeless party hits like “Ladies Night” to make it a “Celebration” for the ages. Nightowls open. $39.50-$59.50. 8 p.m. 310 Willie Nelson Blvd. acl-live.com. — D.S.S.

Also: Celebrate Stay Gold’s first anniversary with Icing (a Cake cover band, naturally). … Rising Houston rapper Le$ brings his “Steak X Shrimp” tour to Scoot Inn. … New Orleans brass powerhouse New Breed Brass Band fuses a traditional Second Line sound with hip-hop and funk at Antone’s. … Los Angeles roots-rock band the Americans return for a second gig this month before their big moment in the upcoming PBS music program “American Epic,” playing at Lamberts with Elijah Ford. … Violet Crown Records celebrates the release of its first compilation album with a show at Spider House Ballroom featuring the Hickoids and Javier Escovedo. … Top local options include Carolyn Wonderland and Shelley King at One-2-One Bar, Lil Cap’n Travis and Dickie Lee Erwin at ABGB, Dale Watson at C-Boy’s and Jess Klein at Strange Brew.

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