Singer/songwriter Ani DiFranco was considered a “folk punk” artist when she recorded her first albums in 1997 and ’98. Her style and message got her nominated for “Best Female Rock Vocal Performance” at the Grammys both years. Driven by social activism and a restless creativity, she continually leads herself and her listeners into ever more exciting territory. Touring with a five-piece band, Ani DiFranco comes to the Rio Theatre in Santa Cruz Wednesday, March 5th. Showtime is 8 pm.