Kevin Griffin of Better Than Ezra plays songs and tells stories at Evanston's SPACE Thursday, May 9.

Sound check: Kevin Griffin takes over SPACE for solo show; Picture This; The 1975

Kevin Griffin is a heck of a showman. Not only is the award-winning performer largely responsible for the favorites (“Good,” “Desperately Wanting,” “In the Blood,” “Breathless”) by his longtime alternative rock band Better Than Ezra, but he’s also penned songs for Howie Day, Taylor Swift, Sugarland, David Guetta and others. And on top of that, his solo performances are a mix of his music, jokes and storytelling. Be sure to catch him when he plays an intimate performance at Evanston’s SPACE midweek. 8 p.m. Thursday, May 9, at SPACE, 1245 Chicago Ave., Evanston. $25-$78. (847) 492-8860 or evanstonspace.com.

Can you Picture This?

Irish band Picture This plays Chicago’s Lincoln Hall Sunday, May 5. Courtesy of Katia Temkin

Ireland’s biggest-selling act from last year, Picture This, pays a visit to the Chicago area on its first North American tour. Supporting February’s release of the band’s second full-length album, “MDRN LV,” Picture This plays a snappy headlining set at Lincoln Hall, accompanied by a solo acoustic set from Future Feats. 7 p.m. Sunday, May 5, at Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago. $18-$20. (773) 525-2501 or lh-st.com.

The 1975

The Manchester-born pop rock band that set the internet on fire with last fall’s release “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships,” is coming to Chicago for a night of bright, bouncy dance music. But rest assured, fans: The setlist will include the heartbreakers, too. Pale Waves and No Rome share the bill at the United Center. 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 8, at the United Center, 1901 W. Madison St., Chicago. $29.50-$70. (800) 653-8000 or unitedcenter.com.

• Brian Shamie is a Daily Herald multiplatform editor and local music fanboy. Find him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter at @thatshamieguy. Brian also keeps tabs on the Chicago-area music scene at chicagosoundcheck.com.

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