It’s about to get crazy busy in Tucson’s performing arts scene, so before you start punching all those festivals, plays and dance events into your digital calendar, here are three winning concerts from downtown’s hopping Rialto Theatre:

  • Return of The Paladins: The San Diego rockabilly-blues rockers haven’t played a show here in several years, so we’re sure they’ll draw a full house when they play the Rialto Theatre offshoot 191 Toole on Saturday, Jan. 13. It’s the return of an old friend to Tucson, double bass player Dave Gonzalez whose alt-country Hacienda Brothers band with former Tucsonan Chris Gaffney was a regular repeat offender on Tucson stages. Fun fact: The Hacienda Brothers played their first show at a birthday party in Tucson for concert promoter Jeb Schoonover, who went on to manage the band from 2002 until Gaffney’s death in 2008. Schoonover is behind the Paladins’ Tucson show, presented with the Rialto. It gets started at 8 p.m. Saturday at 191 Toole, 191 E. Toole Ave. Tickets are $16 in advance through or $20 day of show. Tucson’s own Mike Hebert Prison Band opens the show.
  • Buy a ticket, get a record: Josh Ritter & The Royal City Band have a ganga offer for fans who attend his Rialto Theatre show Monday, Jan. 15: Buy a ticket and they’ll slip you a free download of his months-old album “Gathering.” But believe us, Ritter doesn’t need any incentives to get his fans out on a Monday winter’s night. The man is a terrific singer-songwriter, who happens to be sharing the marquee with another pretty terrific singer-songwriter, Nicki Bluhm.

The all-ages show starts at 8 p.m. at the Rialto, 318 E. Congress St. $27 in advance; $29 day of through

  • A little alt-rocking pop on a Tuesday: San Diego’s Pinback has been releasing solid alternative pop since the late 1990s . After a nearly 20-year run, the band — anchored by founding members Armistead Burwell Smith IV and Rob Crow — has a pretty solid catalogue to draw from.

The show starts at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 16, at 191 Toole. $18 in advance, $21 day of show through ticketfly

Contact reporter Cathalena E. Burch at or 573-4642. On Twitter @Starburch