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The-Dream 

When: Thu., April 5, 9 p.m. 2012
Price: $28-$45

Wasn't it just two years ago that songwriter and "ghetto falsetto" singer The-Dream had an ubiquitous and seemingly untouchable presence in hip-hop? Not only was he the auteur behind such hits as Rihanna's "Umbrella," J. Holiday's "Bed," and Mary J. Blige's "Just Fine" (which he co-wrote), he also developed a chunky, peppy production style that quickly took hold in commercial radio. The-Dream's ascendance from man-behind-the-curtain to bona fide frontman happened in late 2007; by spring of 2008 he was opening for Jay-Z and Blige at the Oracle Arena. And now he's returning to Oakland, albeit in much more "intimate" environs. On Thursday, Apr. 5, The-Dream will appear with CJ Hilton at The New Parish (579 18th St., Oakland). Their "Kill the Lights Tour" should be as grown, sexy, and pleasantly escapist as the name implies. 9 p.m., $28-$45. TheNewParish.com

— Will Butler

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