Sept. 17-23, 2003 

18-20 THU-SAT • MUSIC Frank Pahl — He could be Thelonious Folk, Bric-a-Brac Bacharach, Awry Cooder. When he gets his automatons going, he is our hometown Rube Goldberg of roots music. Frank Pahl is eccentrically shindigging for three nights to celebrate two new recordings. On The Mayor of the Tennessee River, on PelPel Recordings, he helps the Shaking Ray Levis back-up the monologist and NPR commentator David Greenberger. The Back of Beyond is Frank as a leader (of other musicians, of automatons, sometimes of just his multitracked lonesome) on Japan’s Novel Cell Poem label. This week’s collaborators include guitarists Eric Gustafson (Brothers Groove) and Carl Michael, synthesizer improviser Dennis Palmer (Chattanooga’s Shaking Ray Levis), the Scavenger Quartet and Terror at the Opera; Jeffery Steiger delivers opening monologues Thursday and Friday. Thursday, Sept. 18, at Kerrytown Concert House, 415 N. Fourth Ave., Ann Arbor, call 734-769-2999. Friday and Saturday, Sept. 190-20, at Detroit Art Space Gallery, 101 E. Baltimore, Detroit; call 313-664-0445.

19-21 FRI-SUN • MUSIC Ann Arbor Blues & Jazz Festival — It’s a stripped-down, indoors fest this year, but intense nonetheless. Randy Weston — a towering talent who makes the piano sing and shout — makes his first area appearance in something like 20 years by appearing Friday and Saturday at the Bird of Paradise (312 S. Main, shows at 8:30 and 10 p.m., call 734-662-8310). Deborah Coleman, one of the hottest blues guitar slingers on the scene, is at the Firefly Club on Friday (207 S. Ashley, shows at 9 and 11 p.m., call 734-665-8310). Also at the Firefly: the Easy Street Jazz Band for a 5-8 p.m. happy hour on Friday; Brazil and Beyond on Saturday at 9 p.m. (expect some of their crafty samba-style Beatles material), and the Praying Hands Gospel Choir for a Sunday gospel brunch at 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. For more information, call the clubs or check www.a2blue.jazzfest.org.

20 SAT • ART Rona Pondick: A Fifteen Year Survey — More than 15 works cover a broad spectrum here, including two room-size installations and an outdoor exhibit. Pondick’s most recent pieces are fascinating hybrid sculptures that fuse human and animal forms. "Pondick merges traditional casting techniques with 21st century digital technologies to achieve uncanny results," says Joe Houston, curator of exhibitions at Cranbrook Art Museum. In one of her most unsettling pieces, Monkeys, Pondick scans her own body using rapid-prototyping computer technology and melds her form with the forms of primates. (We could joke about monkeying around, but we won’t.) At the Cranbrook Art Museum (39221 N. Woodward Ave, Bloomfield Hills). Call 877-462-7262 for more information.

 

20 SAT • PERFORMANCE ART Liquid Silver — Detroit's performance-art Pied Piper is saying goodbye with a final blowout this weekend. A flamboyant and well-known presence in the downtown Detroit arts scene, Ziam has been throwing Liquid Silver events for 10 years. What’s a Liquid Silver event? Well, this weekend’s production is expected to include a host of models from over the years (beautiful people from the streets of Detroit), a bright display of Ziam’s funky, found-art costuming and fashion design, as well as his signature songs. Some of his shows have blown our socks off, others have been less than stellar, but we have a sneaking suspicion this one will be worth catching — especially if you’ve never seen one. The lovely Sky Covington is the opening act, so we’re expecting her classic lounge singing. The show is supposed to start at 10 p.m., but bring your patience just in case. Tickets are $20 at the door, $15 advance. At the Metropolitan Center for Creative Arts, 6911 E. Lafayette, Detroit. Call 313-259-3200 for more information.

21 SUN • MUSIC Pavarotti Farewell Concert — Speaking of goodbyes, Luciano Pavarotti has been performing since he was 5 years old, and at 67, he says he’s looking forward to some time off. Of course, with a talent the size of his, the international victory lap is to last until 2005. We could recount career highlights of this one-third of the Three Tenors. We could wax about how became known as the "King of the High C’s" with one stellar 1972 performance. We’ll just agree that he deserves the rest. What is expected to be his last Detroit performance is at the Palace of Auburn Hills (2 Championship Drive, Auburn Hills). Call 248-645-6666 for information.

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