Undisputed giants

Powerhouse artists visit the Tacoma Dome

By Christian Carvajal on July 28, 2017

With screams for Bruno Mars' 24K Magic World Tour stop still echoing in the corridors enclosing the Tacoma Dome, this week brings two massive top-40 acts to the same venue - and that's before Lady Gaga draws her thousands of little monsters next weekend. This is shaping up to be an epically memorable summer on D Street, with at least one show already sold out. Here's hoping the scalpers are atypically kind. For anyone who's flipped on a radio over the last five years, none of these artists need much of an introduction. We'll skip through their resumes anyway to convey how grandly the Dome is killing it.

Ed Sheeran is best known, this week anyway, as the ginger minstrel who outraged the Internet by having the audacity to appear on an otherwise innocuous episode of Game of Thrones. The abuse he received on Twitter was so vicious it may have incited his brief absence from the social platform - or he may simply have been too busy cashing checks from his January 2017 album, entitled ÷. (It's pronounced "Divide." As John Oliver would sneer: Cool.) The album has already yielded two top-10 singles in the U.S., "Castle on the Hill" and the inescapable "Shape of You." Stack those on previous bestsellers "Don't," "Thinking Out Loud" and "Photograph." Sheeran won a pair of Grammy awards for "Thinking Out Loud" and an MTV Video Music Award for "Sing." He's also been inducted as a Member of the Order of the British Empire.

Barely 30 years old, Kendrick Lamar Duckworth of Compton, California (we can see why he dropped his last name) has been hailed as rap's modern champion. His platinum second album, 2012's good kid, m.A.A.d. city, yielded three top-40 singles including the #1 rap hit "Swimming Pools (Drank)." It was really his third album, though, the 2015 To Pimp a Butterfly, that set the critics on a roar. Both the BBC and Entertainment Weekly named it best album of 2015 in any genre. EW critic Kyle Anderson opined,"(T)his is the kind of cultural document that years from now we'll never know how we could have lived without." That set the stage for Larmar's 2016 compilation album, untitled unmastered, and the April 2017 studio effort Damn, already anointed double platinum by the RIAA. Both untitled unmastered and Damn debuted at #1 on the Billboard album chart. Lamar hits Tacoma on the crest of two recent top-five singles, "Humble" and "DNA." He won a VMA for "Alright" and Grammys for To Pimp a Butterfly, "Alright," "I" and "These Walls."  He's featured on Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood" and has more Grammy nominations than any artist who isn't named Michael Jackson, so ... Damn.

Ed Sheeran with James Blunt, 7:30 p.m., Saturday, July 29, Tacoma Dome, 2727 East D St., Tacoma, tickets sold out, 253.272.3663, tacomadome.org

Kendrick Lamar: The Damn Tour with Travis Scott & D.R.A.M., 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 1, Tacoma Dome, 2727 East D St., Tacoma, $114.30-$457.20, 253.272.3663, tacomadome.org