Wednesday, October 2
Ghost Tour of Philadelphia
Greet October with a ghastly walking tour, exploring the haunted houses of Old City and Society Hill while hearing about Philadelphia’s own ghost stories. 7:30pm. $17. Signers Garden, Fifth and Chestnut sts. ghosttour.com
The Brothers Size
This backwoods play follows the recently-paroled Oshoosi Size as he tries to embrace a fresh start in life. When a friend offers an alternative to working in his brother’s repair shop, Oshoosi must choose between family and following his dreams. 8pm. $15-$25. Walnut Street Theatre, 825 Walnut St. walnutstreettheatre.org
Chestnut Hill College: “Red Dwarf Stars and Little Green People”
Questions about alien life? How about God? O existential one, this is the event for you: Join Rev. Frank Haig and Professor Scott Engle as they explore the possibility of alien life from both scientific and religious standpoints. 7pm. Free. Chestnut Hill College, Commonwealth Chateau, 9230 Germantown Ave. irands.org
Thursday, October 3
Mervyn Warren is a pretty dynamically successful artist: writer, singer, multi-instrumentalist, arranger (Sister Act 2!), producer and composer. Born in Huntsville, Alabama, he attended his hometown’s Seventh-Day Adventist school, Oakwood University, where Claude McKnight III invited him to join the Gentlemen’s Estate Quartet, an a capella group focused on praise and harmony. That was 1980. After years of performing in churches, all over campus, a new name and rotating lineups—it was college, after all—the group was signed, as Take 6, to Warner Brothers in 1987. The following year, they’d release their eponymous debut, winning two Grammy Awards in jazz and gospel categories. Over 25 years later—and Warren-less; he departed in 1991—the sextet is celebrating their momentous success with some select performances.
FYI, Take 6 does a capella unlike most amateur co-ed groups. These gents—McKnight, brothers Mark and Joey Kibble, Alvin Chea, David Thomas and Khristian Dentley—expertly employ ranges and vocal capabilities and perfectly imbue ‘em with jazz, R&B and soul. Since 1988, they’ve won a slew of additional awards, appeared on some stellar soundtracks and performed for four sitting presidents. Their performance may resonate more with those who love the Lord, but an elegant evening of stunning musical mastery like theirs is worth the experience, no matter the nature of the content. / BILL CHENEVERT
8pm. $40. World Cafe Live at the Queen, 500 N. Market St., Wilmington, Del. 302.994.1400. queen.worldcafelive.com
PAFA After Dark
PAFA After Dark is a series of after-hours museum events featuring offbeat performances, cocktails, flashlight tours and other shenanigans that you wouldn’t be able to experience during the day at America’s first museum and school of fine arts. The first After Dark event of the season is hosted by the sassy cabaret drag queen Martha Graham Cracker, and includes a “History of the Universe” (in 10 minutes) lecture from PAFA faculty member Kevin Richards. 6pm. $10-$15. Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 118 N. Broad St. pafa.org
Metal Masters Tour
Get your headbanging on with this metali-tastic tour, featuring prolific New Jersey-bred Seven Witches along with local bands Power Theory, the Madeline Haze and Single Bullet Theory. Not for the faint of heart or hearing. 6:30pm. $16. Voltage Lounge, 421 N. Seventh St. voltageloungephilly.com
Beer and Burlesque
Frankford Ave’s little craft beer Rennaissance continues with this quirky vaudevillian event at the best bottle shop on the block. Burlesque vets like Miss Rose and Hayley Jane perform while you sample cigars from Exhale Lounge, plus rare kegs from 21st Amendment, Uinta and Elysian. 7pm. $7. Bottle Bar East, 1308 Frankford Ave. bottlebareast.com
The iconic blonde Debbie Harry returns with half of the original members of the band that popularized new wave in the late ‘70s/early ‘80s. Their latest studio album, Ghosts of Download, is due early next year. 8pm. $48-$68. Keswick Theatre, 291 N. Keswick Ave. Glenside. keswicktheatre.com
Friday, October 4
Abel Tesfaye grew up listening to a plethora of music: hip-hop, post-punk, indie rock, soul, et al. So it sort of makes sense that the Canadian-born artist and producer’s first project, the Weeknd, is a bunch of R&B-style tracks with a certain flavor that could turn discriminating writers from publications like The New York Times into serious fans, right alongside countless lovers of the wide range o’ genres Tesfaye absorbed as a kid like a dry sponge.
Hitting the ground running in 2010, the then-20-year-old linked up with Jeremy Rose for some in-studio magic-making, resulting in songs that were eventually uploaded to the Internet and discovered—and appreciated—by cats like rapper and fellow Canadian Drake. That initial lovefest set in motion a millions-times-downloaded musical adventure; the next year, the Weeknd dropped three mixtapes, practically back-to-back—House of Balloons, Thursday and Echoes of Silence, respectively—nabbing the press-averse singer-songwriter tons of well-deserved word-of-mouth notoriety. Pitchfork called Trilogy, his 2012 compilation album revisiting his finest mixtape output, “some of the best music of the young decade,” declaring the LP would be heard for years to come, and “will be one of those records that will be viewed as a turning point when we look at the 2010s as a whole.” Time and talent have indeed marched on with Kiss Land, his well-received latest, released last month. And Tesfaye’s clear, falsetto strains over haunting downbeats could make even this skeptical scribe a true believer. / RANDY LOBASSO
8pm. $45. With Banks + Anna Lunoe. Susquehanna Bank Center, 1 Harbour Blvd., Camden, NJ. 856.365.1300. susquehanna.net
Wil Wheaton vs. Paul and Storm
Once upon a time, in a galaxy exactly like our own, nerds, geeks, dorks and dweebs were viciously oppressed. Publicly shamed for their passion for Golden Age comics and shunned for the 56 binders of Magic: The Gathering cards wedged under their beds, nerds had grown accustomed to being misunderstood. But in an age of superhero movies grossing millions of dollars and commercialized Green Lantern shirts, we are oppressed no longer. There is nothing more comforting than finding like-minded people who rejoice in the same things you do. Fortunately, local nerds have a fantastic night in which to revel this week.
Paul and Storm (aka Paul Sabourin and Greg “Storm” DiCostanzo) have achieved both international and Internet acclaim for their geek-oriented music and comedy. Beginning in the professional a cappella band Da Vinci’s Notebook, the duo has been collaborating for nearly 20 years, making songs like “Write Like the Wind”—an appeal to author George R. R. Martin to swiftly complete his renowned A Song of Fire and Ice series for fear of holding up production of its televised counterpart Game of Thrones—that promise to thrill audiences who appreciate not only the musical vibe, but the lyrical references. Coupled with nerd media staples like Adam Savage (MythBusters), actor James Urbaniak (voice of Dr. Venture on The Venture Bros.), singer-songwriter Jonathan Coulton and Felicia Day, Paul and Storm’s performances have won over web and live traditional audiences alike.
The duo are currently touring with actor-turned-blogger Wil Wheaton (Star Trek: The Next Generation, Stand By Me, Eureka), and together, they spin Wheaton’s tale of meeting science-fiction icon William Shatner into a piece entitled “William F*cking Shatner.” Other songs in their repertoire include “The Captain’s Wife’s Lament,” a tune released in response to International Talk Like a Pirate Day, and “Frogger! The Frogger Musical!” Whether you’re a Trekker or into Star Wars, whether your game is World of Warcraft or Dungeons & Dragons, these guys have been, and always shall be, your friend. Now you know—and knowing is half the battle! The other half is going to the concert. / KENNEDY ALLEN
8pm. $25. World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St. 215.222.1400. philly.worldcafelive.com
Not only does Chicago-based DJ Sound Remedy take infectiously catchy pop songs like Ellie Goulding’s “Hanging On” and Lana Del Rey’s “Videogames” and somehow manage to make them even catchier, this all-encompassing DJ will also have you dancing to Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata” and Nirvana’s “All Apologies” like you never thought you would. 9pm. $16-$20. With Victor Niglio. The Blockley, 3801 Chestnut St. 215.222.1234. theblockley.com
With Spike Lee’s American remake on the horizon, don’t miss your chance to see the original Korean version in all its subtitled glory. Oldboy, originally filmed by the critically-acclaimed Park Chan-wook, tells the riveting tale of a Seoul businessman who mysteriously winds up behind bars, later to find he’s been framed as his wife’s killer. 7pm. $7-$9. International House, 3701 Chestnut St. 215.387.5125. ihousephilly.org
The Gravediggers’ Ball
Get your fill of upscale ghoulishness at this year’s Gravediggers’ Ball. The fundraiser, in its ninth season, helps to support Philadelphia’s nationally-recognized historic landmark Laurel Hill Cemetery. 7pm. $175. Crystal Tea Room, 100 E. Penn Square. 215.627.5100. gravediggersball.weebly.com
The Grateful Dead has risen from its 1995 grave through lyricist Robert Hunter: Nearly 50 years after he began writing for the legendary rock band, the prolific artist is hitting the road solo and taking some new songs along with him. 8pm. $29-$45. Keswick Theatre, 291 N. Keswick Ave. Glenside. 215.572.7650. keswicktheatre.com
Mario Ybarra Jr.
Inspired by his former street crew from the ‘90s, California-based artist Ybarra is set to debut his latest mixed-media installation, including colorful street-art style wallpaper, sketchbooks and jackets. 6pm. Free. Fabric Workshop and Museum, 1214 Arch St. fabricworkshopandmuseum.org
Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam
Bring the family to this four-day extravaganza, chock full of 12-foot-tall, 10,000-pound, four-wheeled performers as they barrel, soar and smash through a stadium-sized obstacle course. 7:30pm. $25-$70. Wells Fargo Center, 3601 S. Broad St. monsterjam.com
National Taco Day at Le Viet
Celebrate National Taco Day—a real, actual holiday—with class by shoveling two-for-$7 tacos with a Vietnamese twist into your mouth at South Philly’s Le Viet. The discounted plates will be served all day, with Corona and margarita specials to boot. 11am. Le Viet, 1019 S. 11th St. 215.463.1570. levietrestaurant.com
Saturday, October 5
70x7 The Meal, Act XXXIV
Lucy and Jorge Orta are a ridiculously cool artistic twosome who’ll be helping the Mural Arts Program usher in a big anniversary: It was this month 30 years ago that Mural Arts started weaving its way into our city’s essential fabric. To help celebrate it, they’re attempting something that, to lots of people, will just sound annoying and crazy: Shutting down Market Street between Fifth and Sixth streets for five hours to hold one ginormous dinner for 900 invited guests on a two-block-long communal table. But the Ortas just want to engage the public in a discussion on food and consumption, and they’re doing it big with 70x7 The Meal, Act XXXIV, a work of public art staged as an early supper, curated by award-winning chef Marc Vetri.
A browse through the Orta portfolio, and it becomes pretty clear: These two are fascinated by the intersections of nature, economy, industry, consumerism and, well, awareness of the fact that we all hum along in a giant albeit delicate ecosystem. Seated along a massive dinner table nestled inside the Independence National Historic Park, the Paris-based artists hope to nurture conversations about creating a healthier food system, both for us and for the environment. Whatever the nature of this delicious collaboration, we’re happy to see MAP making friends, spreading their mission and beautifying our great city. / B.C.
4:30pm. Independence National Historical Park, between Chestnut and Arch streets and Fifth and Sixth streets. 215.685.0750. muralarts.org
NYC Art Extravaganza Day Trip
A bus ride into the heart of New York, a MOMA tour and dinner, all for $90? Not bad. Rising bright and early will give you the chance to join students and faculty from the Cheltenham Center for the Arts in exploring the museum, then kick back at the East of Eighth Restaurant & Bar. 9am. $90. Cheltenham Center for the Arts, 439 Ashbourne Rd. 215.379.4660. cheltenhamarts.org
This discussion brings together some of Philadelphia’s brightest minds in an effort to share thoughts and ideas in the technology, entertainment and design fields. Speakers include media arts professor Frank J. Lee, Encore.org founder/CEO Marc Freedman and NASA mission specialist Paul Richards. 8am. $30-70. Drexel University, 3141 Chestnut St. 215.300.8315. tedxdrexelu.com
Locust Moon Festival
When it comes to comic conventions, the East Coast can’t claim to match all the fanfare and hoopla that engulfs San Diego every July. But even the littlest events can bring out the big guns: Superstar creators including Jim Steranko and J.G. Jones will be on hand at Locust Moon’s second annual festival, which will be collecting donations for the Jack Kirby Museum to raise awareness of the late King of Comics’ stamp on the industry. 10am. Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St. locustmoonfest.com
Age of Reason Tour 2013: Gramatik
“I make music sometimes. But most of the time I just like to smoke weed,” reads Gramatik’s official bio; maybe he’ll read our cover story. The rising EDM star, one of the many promising talents on Derek Smith’s Pretty Lights Music label, combines elements of jazz, funk and techno beats to create the ultimate chill-out playlist on his recently released LP, The Age of Reason. 9pm. $20-25. The Trocadero, 1003 Arch St. 215.922.6888. thetroc.com
Fiber art might not be a well-known creative outlet, but MacAllister certainly has a knack for it, as evidenced by her latest ongoing exhibition, Burlesque. During this open studio tour, she’ll speak on her artistic process and be accompanied by live music to close out her discussion. Noon. Free. Jed Williams Gallery, 615 Bainbridge St. 215.546.7775. philaopenstudios.org
Fishtown residents, get ready to show some pride: The area’s Neighbors Association is pulling out all the stops for this year’s event, including the annual 5k fun run, beers from the Philadelphia Brewing Company and a moon bounce and obstacle course for the kids. Noon. Free. Penn Treaty Park, 1341 N. Delaware Ave. fishtown.org
MoonFire Tower Fine Art Cabaret
Needles Jones and Destinettes member Wip Wippenton host this art display featuring sculptures by Bryce LeVan Cushing, paintings by Jombi Superstar and the cabaret’s namesake performing segments of Hello World, his new one-man show co-written with award-winning N.Y.C. playwright Justin Sayre. 7pm. Free. William Way LGBT Community Center, 1315 Spruce St. waygay.org
Roxborough offers up a day of drinking, food trucks, carnival games and music. More than 40 businesses will open their doors as live music is provided by Racer, Ginger Coyle and GetAway Stranger. Noon. Free. Lyceum Avenue. roxborough.us/roxtoberfest
Sunday, October 6
Finally, a way to combine autumn in the city with wild animals: Watch the Zoo’s residents play with and devour pumpkins. Observe the lions and tigers decimating their donated pumpkins, or catch a great ape tossing one around. 10am. $18-$20. Philadelphia Zoo, 3400 W. Girard Ave. philadelphiazoo.org
Midtown Village Fall Festival
This week, McGillin’s Olde Ale House turns Center City’s Drury Street into a giant beer garden with German suds and snacks. A DJ, karaoke and family-friendly activities will be part of this all-day fest. Noon. Free. McGillin’s Olde Ale House, 1310 Drury St. mcgillins.com
Monday, October 7
Fairmount Park, with 9,200 acres of space and approximately 200 species of trees, is the largest urban landscaped park system in the world—and easily one of the most definitive features of Philadelphia. Some sections of it, like Belmont Plateau and Sedgley Drive, are acutely manicured, while other sections, like Forbidden Drive and Pennypack Park, surge with natural life like veins in a thriving organism. Due to our beloved founder William Penn’s initial Quaker inspiration, this city manages to blend the hustle and bustle of urban living with the calm and serenity of nature. It seems, then, only fitting that freelance science and environment writer Emma Marris will helm this week’s “The City in the Forest: How Urban Nature Changes Lives and Saves the Planet” discussion as part of Academy of Natural Sciences’ fall author talk series.
For decades, environmental consciousness has mandated that we be held accountable for the impact modern society has made on the natural world. Ecologists have established that we must attempt to restore and rebuild nature to a state predating human interaction. Marris, however, convincingly proposes that humanity should instead strive to achieve both a delicate and maintainable balance with its surrounding environs. Amidst this valiant attempt, she stresses the importance of how adjusting and altering the strategies scientists use to save nature must be augmented as well.
It is particularly congruous that Marris, author of the 2011 book Rambunctious Garden, will be speaking at ANS. It’s the oldest natural science museum in the country, opening its doors in 1812 and educating generations ever since. / K.A.
6pm. Free. Academy of Natural Sciences, 1900 Ben Franklin Parkway. 215.299.1000. ansp.org
Is American Politics Broken?
The World Affairs Council of Philadelphia invites you to a “Great Debate” symposium about how we run our elections and govern our nation. Speakers will cover topics including “Is it even worse than it looks?” and “What is wrong with the Senate and can it be fixed?” 4pm. $25-$150. Independence National Historic Park, 41 N. Sixth St. 215.561.4700. wacphila.org
Jorge Drexler was an ear, nose and throat doctor in Uruguay long before he won acclaim for composing an Academy Award-winning song for The Motorcycle Diaries. Now, he’ll sooth your ear with his Latin pop guitar stylings and smooth voice. 8pm. $23-$25. With Sonoma Sound + Moonflower. World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St. 215.222.1400. worldcafelive.com
Tuesday, October 8
Young Earl Sweatshirt has had quite a tumultuous and fast-paced career after being put on by Odd Future teammate Tyler, the Creator at the tender age of 16. Already spitting grimy verses out of his tiny body, all he needed was a little polish and able production for the release of his 2010 debut studio album, Earl. Despite an overwhelmingly positive reception, Sweatshirt’s mother—more interested in her son’s well-being than his celebrity—insisted he be sent to a boarding school in Samoa almost immediately following its release, due to his knack for getting into trouble. While fellow OFWGKTA ruffians Tyler and Frank Ocean rose to fame, Sweatshirt bided his time. And got his shit together.
Fast forward two years: Sweatshirt returns to the states and quickly gains an Internet following in anticipation of new music. He and the gang find themselves garnering as many alternative hip-hop fans as they are mainstream bandwagon jumpers intrigued by their hipster “otherness.” Satisfaction comes upon a sprinkle of 2012 guest spots on records and mixtapes before the release Doris in August. Sweatshirt’s sophomore LP represents a progression of lyrical content into slightly more mature waters—meaning not as many rape or murder references—but he hasn’t strayed far from his roots, and that’s a good thing. Complex punchlines and borderline-hallucinogenic beats make most of the album seem like an urban vision quest fueled by peyote.
It might be easy for fans to shun Mama Sweatshirt for temporarily stunting a blossoming career, but her boy shows no sign of slowing down. Thank god his legal adult status should keep him here. / DREW O’MEARA
8pm. $20. With Vince Staples. Theatre of the Living Arts, 334 South St. tlaphilly.com
A Victorian Obsession: The Natural World Under Glass
During the 19th century, the general public developed an unprecedented interest with the natural world—and its presentation in their homes as decorative art. John Whitenight, author of Under Glass: A Victorian Obsession, will give an illustrated talk about natural history’s role in the everyday life of that era. 6:30pm. Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway. 215.299.1000. ansp.org
Guitarist, producer, singer and Philadelphia transplant Jose Diaz turns casual conversations into left-field anthems. Neighbors’ forthcoming third record features new band members and a more unique sound that pushes them into stranger, noisier territory. 9pm. $10. Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 Frankford Ave. johnnybrendas.com
Wednesday, October 9
This Is Not A Film
For real, though, it is—and a very important one at that. This is Not a Film was partially shot on an iPhone and smuggled into France in a cake for a last-minute submission to Cannes. The documentary chronicles the everyday life of director Jafar Panahi during house arrest in his Tehran apartment while appealing his sentence: six years in prison and a 20-year ban from filmmaking for being convicted of propaganda against the Islamic Republic. 7pm. $7-$9. International House Philadelphia, 3701 Chestnut St. 215.387.5125. ihousephilly.org
Patrick Park is a singer-songwriter with a heartbreaking voice in the vein of artists like Elliott Smith and Ryan Adams. The melancholy Colorado native tours in support of a forthcoming EP, his first release since 2010. 8pm. $7. With Matt Chylak + Shane Palko. World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St. 215.222.1400. worldcafelive.com
Out of Town
Shire’s Big Give
Clothing and school supplies are in high demand for more than 5,000 local children living in poverty within our community. Donate much-needed items including new socks and underwear, clothing, sneakers, baby items and school supplies at this huge charity event; the drive benefits Cradles to Crayons, which provides local children with basic needs and clothing. Fri., Oct. 4, 1pm. 500 Lee Rd., Wayne. cradlestocrayons.org
The Musical of Musicals: The Musical
Well, here’s no vagueness here. Four players use satire and parody to present a classic melodrama in a hilarious way. Watch them poke fun at Rodgers and Hammerstein, Stephen Sondheim, Jerry Herman, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Kander and Ebb. Through Oct. 19. $18-$25. The Black Box at Opera Delaware, 4 S. Poplar St., Wilmington, Del. bootless.org
Find some of the best deals in the country on bikes and bike gear at this giant outdoor cycling marketplace. New and vintage bikes, collectables, parts, accessories and more will be available for purchase. Sat., Oct. 5, 8:30am. $8. Valley Preferred Cycling Center, 1151 Mosser Rd., Breinigsville. thevelodrome.com
Lancaster’s Fall ArtWalk
This self-guided tour of Lancaster’s downtown galleries includes meet-the-artist events, children’s activities, live demonstrations, workshops, performance art and more. Sat., Oct. 6 and Sun., Oct. 7. Free. 116 N. Prince St., Lancaster. lancasterartwalk.org
NJ Zombie Walk and Undead Festival
The New Jersey Zombie Walk will attempt to break its own Guinness World Record for the largest gathering of zombies, so get your tattered clothing and fake blood ready. Sat., Oct. 5, noon. Free. 1300 Ocean Ave. Asbury Park, N.J. njzombiewalk.com