WANDA JACKSON 

Wanda Jackson's rockabilly hits from the 50s and 60s are classics of the genre, and her comeback recordings in 2002 and '03 were nearly as potent. So why did she release a tribute CD last year called I Remember Elvis, as though her most interesting feature were a capacity for nostalgia? I can think of a couple good reasons. First, she dated Elvis for a while in the mid-50s and credits him with encouraging her to cross over from country into rockabilly. Second, the woman Creem dubbed "the Original Riot Girl" does whatever the hell she wants--and she must know she can liven up even the most overfamiliar material. Her kittenish snarl still packs a potent erotic charge, and she transforms Elvis's songs in startling ways: "Trying to Get to You," hot-blooded and bluesy in the King's version, becomes an almost wistful ode to romantic obsession. She sounds great on disc, but to experience her in full you should catch her onstage--she can burn up a room with the best of them. The Lustre Kings, a retro rockabilly band from Albany, New York, open with a set of their own and then back Jackson. a 9:30 PM, FitzGerald's, 6615 Roosevelt, Berwyn, 708-788-2118 or 312-559-1212, $15.

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