If anyone out there has been tinkering with cloning projects in the basement—oh, wait, Tucson doesn't really have basements—in the, uh, workshop, and you're looking for a willing test subject, please let me know before Friday, Feb. 26, woncha? There's so much good stuff happening that night that I'd love to be in five different places at once.
In no particular order, here's where you'll find me ... and, with your cloning expertise, me, and me, and me, and me on that night.
Unless you're the title character of The Who's Tommy, you probably know that an exhibition of works by Andy Warhol opens this weekend at the Tucson Museum of Art. But the art is merely the beginning of it. There are several Warhol-themed splinter events taking place around town, too. The most music-oriented ones are taking place at the Rialto Theatre.
The night begins at 8 p.m. with the Imploding Silicon Improbable, which is, of course, a takeoff on the Exploding Plastic Inevitable, the name given to the freaky-deaky parties Warhol once regularly threw at his studio, The Factory. The show is being advertised as "re-creating and inverting a night" at The Factory, which explains the wordplay. Similarly, just as the Velvet Underground was the house band at Warhol's events, the Under Velvetground will be providing the entertainment at Friday's celebration. The show is open to all ages, and tickets are $10.
Then, at 10:30 p.m., in what should be a pretty seamless segue, Powhaus Productions, which has already brought you Clusterf**k and the Glitter Ball, takes over the theater for Pop, its own homage to Warhol and the third installment of its series of rock 'n' roll dance parties. The Powhaus folks must be creaming their drawers for this one, since the Exploding Plastic Inevitable was one of the inspirations for the series to begin with. Hosts Kitty Kat McKinley, Desert Diamond Dallas and Clif Taylor promise lots of Warhol-themed surprises and, as usual, music will be provided by DJ Dan Shapiro. There will also be live music segments, one of which will feature Naïm Amor. Revelers are encouraged to dress accordingly, i.e., outrageously. The event is open to anyone 18 and up, and cover is $3. If you've already paid to attend the Imploding Silicon Improbable, you'll be allowed to stay without paying another cover charge.
The Rialto Theatre is located at 318 E. Congress St. For more information, head to rialtotheatre.com, or call 740-1000.
If the whole Warhol scene isn't your thing, you've also got a pair of alt-rock icons from which to choose.
Over at Plush, Lemonheads frontman Evan Dando will perform a solo show that will feature songs from throughout his career—Lemonheads songs, tunes from his 2003 solo album Baby I'm Bored (Bar/None) and a bunch of covers, including songs on the most recent Lemonheads release, the 2009 covers album Varshons (The End).
A caveat: Dando has famously battled substance abuse throughout his career, so you never know which Evan is going to show up— the sober, lucid and goofily charming version who delights in performing his vast catalog of shoulda-been hits, or the strung-out one who showed up to front the Lemonheads the last time Dando was in town, a couple of years ago. For all concerned, let's hope it's the former.
If you're headed to this show, be sure to get there by 9:45 p.m. in time to see the opening set from Brian Lopez. Regardless of how the Dando segment goes, Lopez is a sure thing. Admission is $10. For further details, point your browser to plushtucson.com, or call 798-1298.
Club Congress has its own alt-rock royalty on the same night: former Soul Coughing frontman and current solo artist Mike Doughty. While Soul Coughing's three great albums featured Doughty's stream-of-consciousness poetry laid over jazzy funk grooves and quirky samples, his most recent solo album, 2009's Sad Man Happy Man (ATO), finds him engaging in similar Beat-poetry-inspired musings over a pared-down, largely acoustic backing.
This one starts early, at 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $13 in advance, or $15 on the day of the show.
After the Doughty show, you'd be well advised to stick around for a fine triple bill of local acts: Hairsprayfireandgirls, The Ghost of 505 and I Am the Lion. The show was originally planned as a CD-release event for Hairspray ..., but as these things sometimes go, the discs aren't going to be ready in time, so it's now being billed as a CD-preview party. Whatever you call it, cover is $5.
Club Congress is located at 311 E. Congress St. For more info, call 622-8848, or head to hotelcongress.com.
The Hut is hosting a nice little local triple bill of its own that night, and a rather eclectic one at that. The headliners are Mr. Free and the Satellite Freakout, who are prepping for the release of their debut album in the first week of April. Also on the bill is a pair of jazzy instrumental acts, Phoenix's Sunorus and Tucson's Beatnik Dream Vacation. This one starts around 8 p.m., and cover is $5. The Hut is located at 305 N. Fourth Ave. For more information, call 623-3200.
As you may already know, Preen, the vintage-and-more boutique owned and operated by Erin Bradley and Emilie Marchand, was, along with several other businesses located on the south side of the 200 block of Congress Street, recently unceremoniously booted from its space to make way for a planned ginormous sports bar. (Oh, wait: There was a ceremony, in the form of a press conference announcing said sports bar, which came as a surprise to all—especially the business owners.) Well, the Preen ladies have taken those lemons and painted that shit gold in the form of a new, bigger space at 210 N. Fourth Ave., the former home of Conrad Wilde Gallery. The shop's opening reception takes place on Friday from 5 to 9 p.m. Live music will be provided by Bajo Turbato, the instrumental Eastern Europe-meets-Southwest collaboration between Chris Black and Gabriel Sullivan. There is, of course, no admission charge, but you might want to bring some bread to spend on some new duds for whichever event you choose to attend later that night. For more info, call 628-2991. (To see a short new video featuring Preen's new digs, head over to TucsonWeeklyTV.com.)
There are seven days in a week, and so far, we've only covered one of them. Here are some worthwhile ways to spend the other six.
Five for Five, which is exactly as advertised—five killer local bands for $5—at the Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress St., on Saturday, Feb. 27. The all-ages show starts at 9 p.m. and features the Pork Torta, Golden Boots, Mr. Free and the Satellite Freakout, Cadillac Steakhouse and Lenguas Largas. 740-1000.
Also: The Appleseed Cast (playing Low Level Owl: Volume 1 and Volume 2 in their entirety) and Dreamend at Plush on Tuesday, March 2; Leslie and the LY's, Christopher the Conquered and Signals (featuring former Tucsonan Jacob Cooper of Bark Bark Bark) at Club Congress on Wednesday, March 3; Armida Lowe at Plush next Thursday, March 4; A Storm of Light, Via Vengeance and Juarez at Club Congress on Saturday, Feb. 27; George Thorogood and the Destroyers and Moreland and Arbuckle at the Rialto Theatre on Wednesday, March 3; Insomniacs at Boondocks Lounge on Sunday, Feb. 28; the Young Dubliners and the Dusty Buskers at Plush on Saturday, Feb. 27; Killswitch Engage, The Devil Wears Prada and Dark Tranquility at the Rialto Theatre next Thursday, March 4; Tracy Lawrence at the Diamond Center at Desert Diamond Casino on Saturday, Feb. 27; Unearth and others at The Rock on Tuesday, March 2; Rebelution, Soja and Zion I at the Rialto Theatre on Tuesday, March 2; Faster Pussycat at DV8 on Saturday, Feb. 27; Igor and Red Elvises at The Hut on Monday, March 1; Gat-Rot, Flying Donkey Punch, Brute Squad and Retard Riot (Sarah Palin's favorite band) at Vaudeville on Saturday, Feb. 27; and the final installment of the "Concerts for ... " benefit series for Casa de Esperanza and its Los Niños del Valle, featuring the Crystal Ridge Band, at The Shoppes at La Posada courtyard in Green Valley on Saturday, Feb. 27.