Calendar: Aug. 3-9

By PW Staff
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 0 | Posted Aug. 3, 2011

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Wednesday, Aug. 3

Watermelon Day
What weighs as much as a baby, but tastes much better? No, not Taco Bell’s XXL Supreme Burrito. A watermelon. Today is National Watermelon Day, and the party is hoppin’ at City Tap House. Unlike when you were a wee middle-schooler, this celebration skips the face paint and arts and crafts. Instead, join the big kids, throw back some watermelon-flavored lagers for $4 and mixed drinks for $5, and chow down on some of the pub’s backyard BBQ. For dessert, enter the melon-eating contest for a chance to win two tickets to see Kings of Leon on Aug. 12 at Susquehanna Bank Center. -Alexis Sachdev

4-8pm. Pay as you go. City Tap House, 3925 Walnut St. 215.663.0105.

Jolie Holland

Jolie Holland’s voice quivers with emotion that thickens noticeably on her tongue, harking back to the wavering croon of jazz/blues singer Bessie Smith. It’s an eerie, haunting sound like a night’s encroaching shroud of darkness, a burbling brook of unrequited ache. Though her earlier albums courted Americana with an ambling uphill gait, the last two have attempted to distance her from the style. They create a more electric, eclectic sound with the help of guitarists Marc Ribot and, on her latest, Pint of Blood, Grey Gersten. His prickly guitar complements the noir-ish vibe which—while still folky with very deliberate tempos—leaves Americana behind for something more uniquely her own. -Chris Parker

8pm. $14-$16. With Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside. World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St. 215.222.1400.

Thursday, Aug. 4

Big Audio Dynamite
Alas, the great Joe Strummer is still dead, so no Clash reunion for you. You’ll just have to settle for a reunion of Big Audio Dynamite. But actually, that’s not too bad of a consolation prize. BAD was formed in 1984 by singer-guitarist Mick Jones who, after getting the boot from the Clash, teamed up with four other dudes including singer/filmmaker Don Letts (who later made the killer Clash documentary Westway to the World). Together, they blended reggae and punk not entirely unlike the Clash, but added more hip-hop, dance and funk elements. After several albums and lineup changes BAD split in 1997, but the original lineup has gotten back together this year to outstanding reviews. Even ol’ Strummer would probably enjoy this. -Michael Alan Goldberg

8:30pm. $29.50. Electric Factory, 421 N. Seventh St. 215.627.1332.

Art Factory: Mixtape Release Party

Norris Square Neighborhood Project (NSNP), a Kensington-based nonprofit with a ton of cool youth programs and six boss culturally themed gardens, started Art Factory last year. The goal is to bring Philadelphia’s creative economy to local youth by teaching kids the artistic and administrative skills necessary for creating, marketing, exhibiting and selling their own work. For the latest project, the Art Factory team–comprised of students from several schools across the city, ages 14 to 18—were presented with one burning question: “How can music create a movement?” Not an easy one. But these young art-entrepreneurs jumped headfirst into it by quickly dividing into crews: media and production. The production crew recorded music and poetry made by younger NSNP students (ages 5 to 13), while the other crew designed flyers, posters and album cover art. The movement begins tonight at the mixtape release party, where you’ll dig the work of Philly’s youngest DIY arts team. -Elliott Sharp

1-6pm. Free. Old School Studios, 1417 N. Second St. 215.634.2227.

Friday, Aug. 5

Perhaps you’ve seen striking photos of notable folks like Kim Kardashian, Larry King, Sara Bareilles and Jeremy Piven posing for the camera dressed in white with silver duct tape across their mouths and “NOH8” painted on one cheek? It’s all part of an ongoing campaign devised by celebrity photographer Adam Bouska to protest California’s controversial Proposition 8 amendment banning same-sex marriage. But it’s not just celebs involved in the fight (and the campaign), of course. It’s people from all walks of life, and in that spirit Bouska’s been traveling around the country doing open NOH8 photo shoots. Today he’s in Philly for four hours at Penn’s LGBT Center, and if you’d like him to snap your photo (it’ll potentially appear online, and Bouska will mail you a print), drop on by and wear a plain white T-shirt. The shoot is first-come, first-served, and they’ll supply the duct tape and temporary NOH8 tattoo, which you can sport on your face for the rest of the day to show you’re down with the cause. -M.A.G.

2pm. $40. University of Pennsylvania LGBT Center, 3907 Spruce St.

Man Man
“In their lost divinity, Man Man took up residence in Philadelphia, perhaps because of the Sweet Philly sound, Noam Chomsky, the water Sun Ra was drinking, Charles Barkley’s elbows, the excellence of the Philly lacrosse team or Rocky or Betsy Ross or John Coltrane. Or maybe it was its close proximity to South Jersey,” says the bio on the experimental band’s Facebook, which released their fourth full-length album Life Fantastic in May. Honus Honus, Pow Pow, Chang Wang and the rest of the gang continue to bring the bizarre with even more unsettling lyrics (the track “Haute Tropique” tells the story of a woman who disliked her children so much that she “hacked them up with an old machete and threw a party with dead daughter confetti”) and a variety of instruments—the usual guitars and drums along with squeaky toys, chopsticks, cap guns and ... stuffed frogs? Whatever, it works. These slightly unsettling songs will definitely get stuck in your head. -Kristin Toussaint

8pm. $14. With West Philadelphia Orchestra + Grandchildren. Trocadero, 1003 Arch St. 215.922.6888.

Fantastic Fridays
Finally, a summer festival close to home for those above the Market (-Dixon) line, and on the water to boot: “Fantastic Fridays,” a new summer outdoor series featuring live music on the Delaware Waterfront in Kensington’s Penn Treaty Park. This Friday, the first in the series, will feature the Sensational Soul Cruisers, an eleven man horn group experience that pays tribute to greats like Otis Redding, Barry White and the Drifters. Bring a blanket, a picnic and brown bag it. Each show will be followed by fireworks (remember the gold waterfalls from the 4th of July display?) for that cherry on top. -Emma Eisenberg

6:30pm. Free. Penn Treaty Park, Delaware Ave. and Beach St.

Saturday, Aug. 6

ACANA African Festival
Back for its fourth year during this summer of Philly multi-culti fun is the always fantastic African Festival sponsored by the African Cultural Alliance of North America (ACANA). The Great Plaza will be teeming with music, food and vendors all afternoon and evening. Among the day’s entertainment: Joan Tigrass Rowley, leading purveyor of Trinidad soca (soul/calypso); Congolese-American Afro-soul singer Rafiya; Go for Broke, the local blues band fronted by Yeadon councilwoman Penny MacDonald; and dance acts like the Ballet African Dance Troup from Guinea and the Universal Dance Ensemble. Based on years past, this’ll be one of the best looking, tasting and sounding of all the city’s annual cultural fests. M.A.G.

2pm. Free. Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing.

Archers of Loaf
Led by singer-guitarist Eric Bachmann—who has spent the past decade performing under his own name and with Crooked Fingers—Archers of Loaf sprang from the fertile North Carolina indie-rock scene of the early ’90s, making a jagged-yet-cerebral racket similar to Superchunk and Pavement. Icky Mettle (1993) and All the Nation’s Airports (1996) were stone classics (the latter, distributed by Elektra, added bunches more melody but was far from a major-label sellout), but the Archers were even better live, known for their highly exuberant gigs. They split, nonacrimoniously, in 1998, but since they still like each other and every indie band reunites, they’ve gotten back together. This pleases us. M.A.G.

9pm. $20. Trocadero, 1003 Arch St. 215.922.6888.

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