Music | New Year’s Eve 2012 events

The best final events of the year.
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Charles Bradley
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Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires
Bradley wins over more Chicagoans with each visit thanks to his soul-dripping stage show. The man knows how to work a crowd, just as you’d expect of any former James Brown impersonator. Those rough-hewn pipes could transform “Auld Lang Syne” into a funky shuffle. Lincoln Hall, 2424 N Lincoln Ave (773-525-2508). 10pm; $75.

Wanda Jackson
Badass Wanda Jackson, the Queen of Rockabilly, reminds us that, even at 75, she can drop the ball with the best of ’em. The Rock & Roll Hall of Famer lays down twangy gems from her Justin Townes Earle–produced latest, Unfinished Business. Double Door, 1572 N Milwaukee Ave (773-489-3160). 10pm; $55–$100.

Los Lobos
A winery isn’t a bad place to be on NYE, especially when you’re a stone’s throw from Los Lobos. Riding high on the 20th anniversary of their breakout Kiko, the Latin rockers show Randolph Street revelers they’re more than just another band from East L.A. City Winery, 1200 W Randolph St (312-733-9463). 7:30, 11pm; $85–$175.

The Marked Men
The Bottle’s always a sure bet for New Year’s, and while breakneck Texas punks the Marked Men offer something more raucous than rump-shaking, their punched-up harmonies would’ve made a fan out of even Dick Clark. Bonus: Their countdown takes half the time it does most bands. Empty Bottle, 1035 N Western Ave (773-276-3600). 9:30pm; $25.

Charlie Wilson
Wanna step your way into 2013? Look no further than the Loop. There you’ll find Charlie Wilson, the Gap Band belter with enough charisma to close out the year every day. If you stumble out of the Chicago Theatre with one of his hits stuck in your head, let’s hope it’s “Early in the Morning,” the perfect song for the new year’s first walk of shame. Chicago Theatre, 175 N State St (312-462-6300). 8pm; $75–$125.

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