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March 11, 2015 at 7:03am

5 Things To Do Today: Kareem Kandi jazz open mic, UPS art show, Dub Narcotic Studio live, karaoke ...

Saxophonist Kareem Kandi hosts a jazz open mic at The Swiss tonight. Photo credit: Jason Ganwich

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 11 2015 >>>

1. Saxophonist Kareem Kandi has hosted an open jazz session for years, a backyard patio for his music school friends, fellow musicians and newbies to jam out standards - fresh, fiery and exciting. The jam now resides every second Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. in The Swiss.

2. Kittredge Gallery is showing the work of three recent University of Puget Sound graduates - Haley Andres, Abbie Baldwin, and Kristan Shuford - created during a post-graduate residency at Halle 14 in Leipzig, Germany. At 4 p.m., Baldwin and Shuford, along with exhibition curator and UPS art history alum Luc Sokolsky, will offer a gallery talk about the work and discussion of their experiences. The talk will be followed by a reception and viewing of the exhibition from 5-7 p.m. Both talk and reception will take place at Kittredge Gallery and are free and open to the public.

3. A penny saved is worth two in the bush. And your burning bridges have been gathering moss lately, anyway. The time has come to rework your literary life (or maybe, to create a literary life). Too long have you lingered in the annals of John Grisham; the Classic Book Club may be just what you need. You will save your pennies (because the book club's novels are long; therefore you will take longer to read them, and therefore, go book shopping less - such logic, eh?) and keep moss from burning, ahem, your brain. And you'll become hopelessly intellectual and never make lame, extended jokes involving metaphors, ever. This month the group is ripping apart Sherwood Anderson's Winesburg, Ohio, at 7 p.m. in King's Books.

4. Dub Narcotic Studio in downtown Olympia will host a live, in-studio performance and recording with San Francisco trio Bad Jazz, Olympia experimentalist Arrington de Dionyso and Olympia treasure Knotpinebox. The mics flip on at 7 p.m.

5. Every Wednesday night at Puget Sound Pizza, the Volcano's music critic Rev. Adam McKinney hosts a karaoke session showcasing a Tarantino-like mix of downtown denizens seriously singing Bill Withers and glasses-wearing gals squawking out punk rawk, plus appearances by local rock stars. McKinney, always looking dapper in his sportcoat, has a mellifluous singing voice, perfect for "Disco 2000" by Pulp, "Poisoning Pigeons in the Park" by Tom Lehrer, "Little Green Bag" by the George Baker Selection, "Pulling Mussels (From the Shell)" by Squeeze and his standard closing song, "Bottle of Wine" by the Fireballs.

March 10, 2015 at 6:48am

5 Things To Do Today: Science Cafe, vampires hanging out, Irish cooking class, Stone Brewing ...

Cutting edge electron microscopy is the topic of tonight's Science Cafe at Orca Books in Olympia.

TUESDAY, MARCH 10 2015 >>>

1. Science Café of Olympia meets each month on the second Tuesday at 7 p.m. in Orca Books. It provides an informal atmosphere where people with and without scientific background can meet to deepen their understanding of interesting topics in science and technology. After a presentation by an expert in the field, the meetings are opened for discussion. Tonight, a big brain will discuss cutting edge electron microscopy. The electron microscope is a type of microscope that uses a beam of electrons to create an image of the specimen. It is capable of much higher magnifications and has a greater resolving power than a light microscope, allowing it to see much smaller objects in finer detail, like our imagination in creating this paragraph.

2. Part of The Grand Cinema's Tuesday Film Series, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night continues the trend - as epitomized by Only Lovers Left Alive - of the "vampires hanging out" film genre. The Iranian/American film centers around a ghost town in Iran called Bad City, and the lonely vampire that haunts it. If it's anything like the sumptuous Only Lovers Left Alive, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night is not to be missed. Catch it at 1:15 and 6:25 p.m.

3. This St. Patrick's Day, whether you choose to celebrate with a more authentic Irish Lamb Shepherd's Pie, or with the traditional American-style Corned Beef and Cabbage, Chef Treacy has you covered. He'll take you step-by-step through the preparation of these dishes so you can make them at home for family and friends on March 17. As a fine accompaniment to the meal, his soda bread biscuits are a fun twist on the standard recipe. Grab $55 and reserve your 6 p.m. spot at the Bayview School of Cooking.   

4. If you're curious how California's Stone Brewing Company grew from a small startup brewery into one of the largest craft breweries in the world, then drop by Rainier Growlers from 6-9 p.m., get in a Stone groove, maybe win a raffle prize and enjoy Stone's Go To IPA, Green Tea IPA, Quadrotriticale and Old Guardian brews.

5. Jerry Miller was named one of the top 100 guitarists of all time by Rolling Stone above Eddie Van Halen, Johnny Winter and Randy Rhoads. The Tacoma native has enjoyed a rich career sharing the stage with countless musicians including members of the Doobie Brothers and Carlos Santana. Miller hosts an open jam at 7 p.m. in Dave's of Milton.

March 9, 2015 at 1:28pm

Nerd Alert issued for Leonard Nimoy, Kenneth Branagh, Yahoo! Screen ...

Leonard Nimoy represented the best of humanity. ©2003 By Paramount Pictures All Rights Reserved

Wishing Harrison "fly yes, land no" Ford a speedy recovery, this is Nerd Alert, the Weekly Volcano's recurring events calendar devoted to all things nerdy. I myself am a Star Wars fan, mathlete, and spelling bee champion of long standing, so trust me: I grok whereof I speak.

I'd be remiss if I didn't begin this installment with a tribute to the late, lamented Leonard Nimoy. (Cue the Vulcan salute and "Amazing Grace" bagpipes.) Mr. Nimoy was a hell of a lot more than half-human, but of course I have to start with his most beloved character. Spock represented, not the alien, but the alienated. He stood for all of us who got picked on for being smart and socially awkward - pretty much all of SF fandom. I was addicted to Fringe, on which he played a recurring role, and the docu-series he hosted on Nickelodeon, Standby: Lights, Camera, Action! I loved his stage Sherlock. He was probably the first actor I knew by name. In short, I've been a Leonard Nimoy fan for 40 years. We all have. He lives in us now. Nimoy has been, and always shall be, our friend.

Our nation has contributed hundreds of characters to the planetary mythos over the years, a fact about which we should be patriotically proud. Yet many of those characters are defined by their ability to kill. Others are famous for quests purely vengeful or materialistic. Spock's goal is different: he wants to understand as much as possible of the universe. He seeks to find kinship with those least like himself. His favorite word, "fascinating," attaches value to the "merely" interesting. His catchphrase, "Live long and prosper," is both secular and applicable to all. That character lives on, of course, in Zachary Quinto's respectful performances, and his spirit owes to the labors of multitudes. Yet I think it's important to remember why Spock and Leonard Nimoy were synonymous in so many people's minds: they stood for the same unimpeachable goals. I hope future guardians of Star Trek and its ideas will remember that.

FRIDAY, MARCH 13

Who's got big balls? Disney princess geeks, that's who! So don your blue ribbon, transmogrify Bruno, Gus, Jaq and Luke, and saddle up, fellow Mouseketeers! Kenneth Branagh, acclaimed director of Thor, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit and umpteen Shakespeare adaptations, has lavished his talents on a live-action retelling of Cinderella. It stars Lily James (Downton Abbey's Lady Rose) as Ella, Cate Blanchett as her snotty stepmum and Helena Bonham Carter as the world's greatest personal stylist. As I write this, RottenTomatoes.com rates the flick a bippity-boppity-beautiful 94 percent. Ah, Cinderella: disparaging stepparents in favor of the patriarchal monarchy since 1634.

SATURDAY, MARCH 14

Feel like getting your act on? Olympia's Shakespeare-in-the-Park company Animal Fire Theatre is auditioning for King John at 11 a.m. in the Midnight Sun (113 N. Columbia). Think Game of Thrones minus zombies and whores, but with bloodthirsty mosquitos the size of direwolves. At 7 the next evening, Lakewood Playhouse would love to see actors and singers for Drood, a musical adaptation of Dickens's unfinished novel. The Kander & Ebb musical Cabaret, which features both prostitutes and Nazis, holds auditions at Tacoma Little Theatre on March 22. It's springtime for Hitler!

Two promising stage productions open this weekend: Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard at Evergreen State College, and Steve Martin's thinky Picasso at the Lapin Agile at Tacoma Little Theatre. I've peeked through the windows of the real Lapin Agile on Montmartre. It's the size of a Starbucks. Who knew?

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 17

After getting unceremoniously expelled from NBC's prime-time campus, season six of Community moves to something called Yahoo! Screen, where it probably streams between levels of Candy Crush. In a related story, Generalissimo Francisco Franco and Chevy Chase are still dead to us.

Until next week, may the Force be with you, may the odds be ever in your favor, and may you live long and prosper.

March 9, 2015 at 6:42am

5 Things To Do Today: Ladies IgNite, YA novelist Gretchen McNeil, Greta Jane, Rockaraoke ...

Jazz vocalist Lizzy Boyer will be a part of Ladies IgNite at Rhythm & Rye tonight.

MONDAY, MARCH 9 2015 >>>

1. They wiggled, they jiggled, they wore low cut gowns and short shorts, they kowtowed to the club owners and smiled at the customers ... and they did it all, just to play the music they loved. In the 1930s and 1940s, hundreds of women musicians toured the country in glamorous all-girl-bands, while others played side by side with their male counterparts. Yet by the mid-'50s female jazz musicians had literally disappeared from the workplace; their names, their contributions to music, completely forgotten. In celebration of International Women's Day, the Rhythm & Rye will feature a dazzling night of Northwest jazz women, beginning at 8 p.m. Vocalists Susan Tuzzolino and Joanne Green have pulled together a veritable who's who of musicians from across the region. Listen as they assemble and reassemble in the lounge for this sizzling night of jazz.

2. Gretchen McNeil will be reading from her latest young adult novel, Get Even, the first book in her "Don't Get Mad" series, at 7 p.m. in Orca Books. The series, which she describes as "John Hughes with a body count," revolves around four very different girls who form a secret society where they get revenge on bullies and mean girls at their elite prep school.

3. Greta Jane performs Smoke + Cedar from 7:30-9:30 p.m. In your world, jazz is the Pandora station your boss makes you listen to at work. Well, prepare to get schooled. In vocalist Greta Jane's nimble hands, jazz is powerfully sexy, just the thing to settle a body down after another manic Monday. Imagine a snifter of Maker's Mark and pretty ladies in cocktail gloves. That's right, cocktail gloves! It's our fantasy, damnit! Anywho, happy days are here again - at least for tonight.

4. Rockaraoke at Jazzbones will either be your novel opportunity to act as frontman, or be completely intimidating. Perpetually packed with people, Rockaraoke boasts a unique twist for karaoke in Tacoma: instead of a backing track, you get a three-piece band playing behind you. Check it out at 9 p.m.

5. Punk bands Life Chain, Combat Knife and Katie Jeffries Hard Rock experience will perform at Le Voyeur at 10 p.m.

March 5, 2015 at 6:54am

5 Things To Do Today: There Is No Mountain, Arresting Power, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Andra Taylor and Nate Dodge ...

There Is No Mountain performs at Le Voyeur tonight. Photo credit: Ric Santora

THURSDAY, MARCH 5 2015 >>>

1. Portland's There Is No Mountain is a husband-and-wife duo that seems to set itself up to be just another cutesy, folk-pop duo before sharply and forcefully shifting gears into restlessly experimental trajectory. Kali Giaritta and Matt Harmon bring effortlessly lovely harmonies to the table. Musically, though, their adventurousness is evident. Read Rev. Adam McKinney's full feature on There Is No Mountain in the Music & Culture section, then catch the band with Mike Blackburn at 10 p.m.in Le Voyeur.

2. The issue of police misconduct and brutality is certainly not a new one, but the level of activity, allegations and attention have ramped up recently with incidents such as the murder of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and the outrageously surreal footage of the shooting death of Antonio Zambrano-Montes by Pasco Police last month. Arresting Power, a new documentary charting nearly 50 years of police brutality in Portland reaches back to the late '60s to examine numerous police killings as well as robust community resistance. The film screens at 6 p.m. in the Capitol Theater.

3. Led by Dr. Anne Lyman, the TCC Voices and TCC Singers perform with Bong Lang Ruamjai, an ensemble from the Thai Buddhist temple Wat Washington Buddhavanaram, at 7:30 p.m. in the Tacoma Community College Bldg. 2 Auditorium. The concert features folk music from the northeast of Thailand, as well as Thai pop and Northern melodies.

4. An extended act of hero worship masquerading as a laugh riot, Neil Simon's Laughter on the 23rd Floor is filled with one-liners, peopled entirely by folks who either write or want to write jokes, and fairly accurately reflects the three years when many of the gods of 20th century comedy - including Simon, Mel Brooks, Woody Allen, and Larry Gelbart - regularly assembled in one room to help make Sid Caesar the funniest man on television. Harlequin Productions will stage the comedy at 8 p.m.

5. Andra Taylor is an indie acoustic singer/songwriter from Philadelphia. Her musical style blends rhythmic guitar work and soulful vocals with thoughtful and provocative lyrics. In 2012 she teamed up with fellow songwriter, Nate Dodge, sold her apartment and set out on tour. Taylor and Dodge form a fiery and energetic duo, merging her indie/Americana with his progressive/alternative and collaborating on each other's tunes. Catch their eclectic, fiery, energetic and versatile show at 9 p.m. in The Swiss.

March 4, 2015 at 7:01am

5 Things To Do Today: Holocaust Education, Building the Future, Tippin' For Tigers, Chef Interrupted ...

"50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus" to screen at Pacific Lutheran University tonight.

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4 2015 >>>

1. Pacific Lutheran University presents the Eighth Annual Powell-Heller Conference for Holocaust Education, a unique and perpetually relevant three-day event that provides educators, students and community members a way to use the lessons of the Holocaust to empower themselves and others to challenge prejudices, violence and other forms of dehumanization. The conference, held at PLU from March 4-6, focuses on the theme "Children's Voices: The Holocaust and Beyond." This year's conference opens with a 7 p.m. screening of the Emmy-nominated film 50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus, which chronicles the courageous and intricate work of an American couple committed to saving Jewish children on the eve of the Holocaust. A discussion with 50 Children director/producer/writer Steven Pressman follows at 8:15 p.m.

2. "Building the Future: Collections at Evergreen" closes today at The Evergreen State College. The show highlights not only works of art from Evergreen's art gallery collection but also collections from the Malcolm Stilson Archives and Special Collections, the Chicano/Latino Archive, the James F. Holly Rare Books Collection, the Longhouse Education and Cultural Center and Evergreen Pictures. Read Alec Clayton's full review of "Building The Future: Collections at Evergreen" in the Music & Culture section, then catch its final day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

3. The Swiss Restaurant and Pub hosts Tippin for Tigers tonight. For each beverage you imbibe between 5 and 9 p.m. 50 cents will be donated to the Tiger Conservation Campaign. There's no easier way to get a case of the warm and fuzzies than to have some beers in support of some majestic furry friends.

4. For two decades Boundary Bay Brewing Co. has operated out of a historic 1922 warehouse on Railroad Avenue in Downtown Bellingham. A couple of weeks ago the brewery accepted a Lifetime Achievement Award from Sustainable Connections in Bellingham. They think local first, take care of their employees and live the principled life. That's not to say the brewery won't be thinking about the South Sound March 4 when it pours a bunch of their beers from 6-9 p.m. at the Puyallup River Alehouse. Boundary Bay representative Bryan Bendix will also have some sweet Boundary swag.

5. Author Trevis Gleason will give a free book talk and signing at 7 p.m. in the Wheelock Library. His book, Chef Interrupted: Discovering Life's Second Course in Ireland with Multiple Sclerosis, is not a book about diagnosis or coming to grips with a "new normal" of living with multiple sclerosis. It is a celebration of life and the indomitability of the human spirit, illustrating those lifelong dreams can still be realized with a bit of gritty determination, some serious planning, a positive attitude and the ability to laugh at yourself.

March 2, 2015 at 7:50am

5 Things To Do Today: Greta Jane and Vince Brown, Makoto Fujimura, Underwhelmed Radio, Joy Harjo ...

Greta Jane will sing at Dillingers Cocktails and Kitchen tonight.

MONDAY, MARCH 2 2015 >>>

1. Dillingers Cocktails and Kitchen looks as if it came straight from the '20s, with a graceful, high-arched mirrored shelving system to hold small-batch bottles of booze. For your own taste of Jazz Age Prohibition era, vocalist Greta Jane and guitarist Vince Brown will perform music of the gin joints and back-alley speakeasies at 6 p.m. Bonus: Dillingers was voted Best Restaurant in the Weekly Volcano's 2015 Best of Olympia issue, with the joint's bartender Sherilyn Lightner grabbing Best Bartender honors.

2. "Process Drawings: Recent Works by Makoto Fujimura" showcases recent works by the abstract expressionist painter that provide insight into his creative process and the evolution of an important group of his large-scale paintings created since 2007 at Kittredge Gallery on the University of Puget Sound campus. An artist reception will be held from 5-6:30 p.m.

3. Online Tacoma magazine Post Defiance wants you to SHUT IT at Treos in Old Town Tacoma. Grab a book and read in silence from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Turn off the cellphone!

4. Underwhelmed comes to us from Dick Rossetti (formerly of 107.7 The End and currently the frontman of the Jilly Rizzo) and Isaac Olsen. Olsen should be known to fans of local music and film as the director behind Quiet Shoes, Ich Hunger, and the Girl Trouble documentary, Strictly Sacred. The touch of Olsen can be felt in the hyper-kinetic editing of the show, which mirrors the energy shown in his movies. Assaultive radio stings come and go, framing a show that steers violently from tongue-in-cheek commentary to comedy sketches to readings of prison letters and - their favorite invention - a 10-song montage in five minutes. Read Rev. Adam McKinney's full feature on Underwhelmed in the Music and Culture section, then catch the show from 6-7 p.m. at nwczradio.com.

5. Award winning Muscogee-Creek poet, musician, memoirist, playwright and performer Joy Harjo will read her works at 7 p.m. in the Communications Building Recital Hall at The Evergreen State College. Harjo will read selected works from her book How We Became Human, a collection of poems throughout her twenty-eight-year career, beginning in 1973 in the age marked by the takeover at Wounded Knee and the rejuvenation of indigenous cultures in the world through poetry and music.

February 28, 2015 at 7:32am

5 Things To Do Today: The Classical, vinyl sale, Total Experience Gospel Choir, The Oly Mountain Boys ...

The Classical performs tonight at Dead Olympia record store. Photo Credit: Bert Johnson at www.bertjohnsonphotography.com

SATURDAY, FEB. 28 2015 >>>

1. San Francisco duet the Classical make concise descriptions quite a task. The easiest way to sum them up is to call them baroque art-rock, though that doesn't quite cut it. "Shovel & Bevel" combines clinically mesmerizing drums with odd phrases repeated over and over with darkly expressive strings to create a creepily compelling product. Lead singer and songwriter Juliet E. Gordon pushes the lurching songs forward with her sighing vocals, leaving long stretches of meditative blank space before reappearing to offer more cryptic intonations. Though the songs tend to move slowly, there's a disjointed structure to most of them that manages to keep you on your toes. Check it out at 8 p.m. with Fruit Juice and Retrospecter in Deadbeat Olympia record store.

2.  KAOS 89.3 FM, located in deep West Olympia on the campus of The Evergreen State College, is hosting one of its rare and beautiful music dump or as the station calls it - a "CD & Vinyl Liquidation Sale." In years past, this event was a treasure chest of rare and lost gems of audio delight for collectors of music. It still has that aura, but the "pickins" are more and more slim as the years pass by - with vinyl becoming a scarce commodity you have to get there early and beat the DITC (Diggin' In The Crates) experts. The sale begins at noon in the KAOS lobby.

3. Seattle's acclaimed Total Experience Gospel Choir, led by the Rev. Pat Wright, has performed all over the world, has made numerous recordings, has included Sanjaya (American Idol) and Ray Dalton (Macklemore/Lewis), and has been the featured group in the annual Seattle production of Langston Hughes' Black Nativity. The Total Experience Gospel Choice, er, experience is like no other. They join their powerful voices to create a blend of lyrics, movement, and narrative that variously relate history, point the finger at injustice, encourage activism and sing the praises of love. The University of Puget Sound will host the choir at 8 p.m. in Schneeback Concert Hall, capping the university's Black History Month celebration. The concert will include commentary by the 75-year-old Wright, an ordained pastor whose southern roots and personal musical journey provide a spoken word accompaniment to the choir's ebullient music.

4. Award-winning guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Tommy Castro is famed for his signature brand of tough, rocking rhythm and blues. With his eyes and ears firmly on the future, Castro, along with The Painkillers - original Tommy Castro Band bassist Randy McDonald, Bowen Brown on drums and James Pace on keyboards - has stripped his music down to its raw essence as he rockets into the next phase of his storied career. Whatever. Nobody plays roadhouse like this anymore: the rock snarl and the soul heart. His songs don't make you want to sing along; they make you want to scream along. The band is back at 8 p.m. for a second night at Jazzbones.

5. The Olympia bluegrass quintet The Oly Mountain Boys produced the first bluegrass concept album - centering on the life and hard times of Charlie McCarver in Washington state during the early 20th century. White Horse gallops to traditional bluegrass influenced by the music of Bill Monroe, Ralph Stanley and Earl Scruggs. This is the best brand of bluegrass: energetic and thoroughly heartbroken. Catch the band voted "Best Bluegrass Band" in the 2015 Best of Olympia issue at 8 p.m. with The Student Loan and Mbrascatu in Rhythm & Rye.

Filed under: 5 Things To Do, Music, Olympia, Tacoma,

February 27, 2015 at 7:42am

5 Things To Do Today: International Guitar Night, A Streetcar Named Desire, Nasalrod, Tommy Castro ...

Brazilian jazz master Diego Figuierido performs at the Rialto Theater Feb. 27.

FRIDAY, FEB. 27 2015 >>>

1. If you think the height of guitar music is a stoner's curbside rendition of "Wish You Were," then prepare to have your mind blown. (Seriously - why does every guitarist learn "Wish You Were Here" fresh out of the gate? What's wrong with a little "Bourrée in E Minor?") The Broadway Center for the Performing Arts is serving up an evening of six-string wizardry, brought to you by some of the finest git-axe pickers from around the world - Brian Gore, Andrew York, Diego Figuierido and Maneli Jamal. True, there's no Eddie Van Halen or Tom Morello in the IGN lineup, but we can assure you its artists' lack of household name recognition is undeserved. Catch the 7:30 p.m. concert in the Pantages Theater.

2. When the curtain dropped on the 1947 debut production of Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire, the room - legend has it - was absolutely silent. After a long moment, the stunned audience regained their senses and burst into an ovation that continued for a solid half-hour. University of Puget Sound's production of Williams' classic of love, loss and madness runs through the next two weekends. In the right hands, the play's raw ending (no spoilers here, I promise) still retains the power to take the wind right out of an audience. The word is UPS does just that. The curtain rises at 7:30 p.m. in the Norton Clapp Theatre.

3. We have a hankering for rowdy bluegrass tonight. Maybe it's the rain, the flannel shirts and the switch from Winter Warmers to India Pale Ale. Whatever the case, it's nice. Tacoma's The Cottonwood Cutups are bringing that satisfying pluck and twang and bang to B Sharp Coffee House with McDougall and Nate Dybivek, beginning at 8 p.m.

4. Nasalrod is a lot of goddamn fun. The punk rock Portland foursome create impossibly energetic music that doesn't so much pummel as it grabs you by the shoulders and shakes you about. With stop-start dynamics and gleefully deranged vocals, Nasalrod recall the early days of New Wave and art-rock just as much as the glory days of punk. What makes Nasalrod incredibly exciting, though, is the presence of former Fear member Spit Stix on drums. Having a member of one of the godfathers of punk in your band-and having that person named Spit Stix - is a very Portland thing to have happen. Nasalrod will be joined by C Average and Bullets or Balloons at 8 p.m. in Deadbeat Olympia record store.

5. Award-winning guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Tommy Castro is famed for his signature brand of tough, rocking rhythm and blues. With his eyes and ears firmly on the future, Castro, along with The Painkillers - original Tommy Castro Band bassist Randy McDonald, Bowen Brown on drums and James Pace on keyboards - has stripped his music down to its raw essence as he rockets into the next phase of his storied career. Whatever. Nobody plays roadhouse like this anymore: the rock snarl and the soul heart. His songs don't make you want to sing along; they make you want to scream along. The band hits Jazzbones' stage at 8 p.m.

February 26, 2015 at 7:14am

5 Things To Do Today: JFK program, Olympia Ambassadors benefit, "Angels In America," Barleywine Revue ...

In this public domain photo, President John F. Kennedy rides alongside First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy moments before his death. Hear more about this fateful day tonight in Olympia.

THURSDAY, FEB. 26 2015 >>>

1. We've all seen the footage: President John F. Kennedy in the gleaming dark blue limousine, smiling and waving at the crowd, and then the shot rings out in Dealey Plaza, and everything in a relatively mundane presidential moment has become a piece of history. Author and journalist Dean R. Owen was 7 years old on the day JFK was assassinated. Owen says the tragedy prompted his 30-plus year career in journalism and communications. He will present a multi-media program entitled "John Kennedy: the Man, Myth and Legend," at 7:30 p.m. in the Olympia Timberland Library. The program is based on Owen's book, November 22, 1963: Reflections on the Life, Assassination and Legacy of John F. Kennedy. Owen interviewed nearly 100 people for the book, including White House staff, civil rights leaders, family members of Kennedy, and journalists who covered him. Veteran White House correspondent Helen Thomas, who died in 2013, wrote the foreword.

2. From sweeping alleys, to acting as extra eyes and being a familiar friendly face, downtown Olympia businesses have been benefitting from the Olympia Ambassadors. This of course, has been a pick-me-up for downtown retail. Downtown Olympia Ambassadors provide customer service, directions, and city information to all users of downtown. Our 2015 Best of Olympia issue praises the program multiple times. From 4-9 p.m. The Brotherhood Lounge will host a happy hour benefit for the Downtown Ambassadors, donating 50 percent of drink sales to the program.

3. Traveler Pat O'Connor will discuss his expedition to Antarctica and Argentina with pictures and stories of animals and ice at 7 p.m. in the Parkland/Spanaway Pierce County Library.

4. Volcano scribe Christian Carvajal spent last week in the skin of a monster. He's playing Roy Cohn, the very real attorney who guided the knife point of Sen. Joseph McCarthy's Red Scare, then adamantly denied his own homosexuality even as he was dying of AIDS. He's a character in Tony Kushner's landmark, two-part play Angels in America, directed by Nic Olson for Olympia Little Theatre. The show is challenging for both actors and audiences, and it inspires bizarre moments on stage. Read Christian Carvajal's first person account of Angels In America, Part 2: Perestroika on our Walkie Talkie blog, then catch the show at 7:55 p.m.

5. Barleywine Revue is just awesome. The band writes and performs contemporary, relevant bluegrass and Americana music while paying homage to the traditions that have come in generations before ... think Bill Monroe meets Bill Withers. Oh man, that's fresh! Catch the band with Squirrel Butter at 7 p.m. in The Swiss Restaurant & Pub.

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News and entertainment from Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s most awesome weekly newspapers - The Ranger, Northwest Airlifter and Weekly Volcano.

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