David Byrne has no shortage of fans young enough to be his kids. Since the Talking Heads broke up -- when these young throngs were still in grade school -- the former frontman has experimented with all manner of world music, bringing his celebrity and musical Spidey-sense to every endeavor. And as if that weren't enough, he's now lending his notoriety to an Olympic-sized swimming pool of high-profile good causes: MoveOn.org's Future Soundtrack for America CD; a benefit for Creative Commons (an intellectual-property group obscure except to nerds, who think it's God); and a concert for a Brooklyn tutoring center with Dave Eggers ties. He's even inked good-luck wishes for a Manhattan cappuccino joint on a cardboard box, now proudly displayed for Gotham coffee drinkers.
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What's that? Oh, right, the music.
You might assume that all this activism is meant to distract from Byrne's dwindling musical might. But this year's Grown Backwards surprised the skeptics once again -- and the tour at hand, which brings us Byrne backed by the Tosca Strings, a chamber pop sextet, is set up to straddle genres, continents and decades with unreasonable ease. For David Byrne at 52, it's same as it ever was.