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FILE - This April 15, 2011 file photo shows singer Lauryn Hill performing during the 12th Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, Calif. Federal prosecutors have charged five-time Grammy winner Lauryn Hill with willfully failing to file income tax returns with the IRS. Authorities say Hill earned more than $1.6 million during the three years that she failed to file returns. Prosecutors say her primary source of income is royalties from the recording and film industries. The 37-year-old South Orange, N.J., resident is scheduled to appear before a federal magistrate on June 29. (AP Photo/Spencer Weiner, file)

I have major mixed emotions about seeing the co-headlining concert by Nas and Lauryn Hill on Monday at the Fox Theater in Oakland.

On the positive tip, I'm definitely excited about seeing Nas, who is one of the best artists in hip-hop -- and certainly one of the game's finer live acts. The latter was underscored, yet again, when I saw Nas deliver an excellent headlining set during Day Two of the Rock the Bells festival in August at Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View.

Plus, Nas is touring in support of what may well be the best album of the year -- "Life Is Good." The chance to hear him perform the new material, now that I have had a few more months to digest it, is a huge selling point for me. Of course, his back catalog also rocks.

On the opposite edge of the spectrum is Hill, who has gone to great lengths to establish herself as one of the most disappointing performers in the entire music business.

When people ask me to name the worst live show I've ever seen, out of literally thousands to choose from, I never hesitate: Lauryn Hill at the Paramount Theatre in Oakland in 2007, when the star took the stage 2½ hours late and proceeded to deliver such a train wreck of a performance that fans were demanding refunds.

I've seen Hill several times going back to 1999, and more often than not, I've found her to be a dramatic disappointment onstage. Combine that with the fact that we're still waiting for a proper studio follow-up to 1998's landmark "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill," and it's hard to get overly excited about seeing the hip-hop/soul singer at the Fox.


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However, hope will bring fans to see Hill -- hope that Hill will one day return to her former heights and that they will be there when she does. And I hope that it happens on Monday night. If not, well, Nas should still be worth the price of admission.

Showtime is 8 p.m. The Fox is at 1807 Telegraph Ave. Tickets, $49.50-$79.50, are available at www.ticketmaster.com.

RISING STAR: It wasn't Jack White. It wasn't Neil Young and Crazy Horse. And it certainly wasn't the Flaming Lips or Guns N' Roses.

The single most impressive performer I saw at last month's Bridge School Benefit concert was (drum roll, please) Gary Clark Jr.

Who?

Certainly that's what many Bridge School fans were asking during Day One of the benefit at Shoreline Amphitheatre. Clark was the lone unknown (at least to most attendees) in a lineup otherwise filled with heavy hitters and platinum-selling acts.

He won't be unknown for long -- he's just too good to ignore.

The Austin-based blues-rocker, who has been performing since 1996, recently released his major-label studio debut, "Blak and Blu." Give it some time to resonate with listeners, maybe six months or so, and tons of people should be singing the praise of this fine vocalist-guitarist -- especially if they have the chance to see him in concert.

Your chance comes Friday when Clark performs at the legendary Fillmore, 1805 Geary Blvd., San Francisco. Showtime is 9 p.m. Into Weather is also on the bill. Tickets are $28; www.livenation.com.

BLAST FROM THE PAST: I'm always happy when old-school punk/New Wave acts return to the road -- especially when they happen to be acts that I never got to see back in their glory days.

So I'm definitely pleased to report that Scotland's legendary punks the Rezillos (which also once went by the moniker the Revillos) are heading to the Bay Area.

Don't remember the Rezillos (or Revillos)? Pick up a copy of the band's 1978 debut, "Can't Stand the Rezillos," and then you should be suitably stoked about seeing the band in concert. That album is still considered a landmark work in both the punk and New Wave genres.

The Rezillos, which still features original vocalists Eugene Reynolds and Fay Fife, performs on Thursday at the Uptown Nightclub, 1928 Telegraph Ave., Oakland. Showtime is 9 p.m., and tickets are $13-$15 (510-451-8100, www.uptownnightclub.com).

The group also plays Friday at the Blank Club, 44 South Almaden Ave., San Jose. Showtime is 9 p.m., and tickets are $13-$15 (408-292-5265, www.theblankclub.com).

Follow Jim Harrington at http://twitter.com/jimthecritic, www.facebook.com/jim.bayareanews and http://blogs.mercurynews.com/aei/category/concerts.