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Eight Days a Week

The daily guide to life in the Triangle

Rowan and Rice
Cat's Cradle

Peter Rowan has always been an innovator. Even when playing within the notoriously rigid confines of Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Boys, he was encouraged to exhibit his originality. When Rowan joined the band, Monroe told him he was getting phone calls from people saying Rowan sounded good, maybe like him. Monroe needn't have worried. Rowan developed his own style, incorporating folk, rock and reggae. This 8 p.m. outing will feature the Rowan & Tony Rice Quartet. Tickets are $22. --Grant Britt

The Taming of the Shrew
Kennedy Theatre

Since the acting doesn't follow suit, the Zen garden set and oriental costumes don't truly transport Burning Coal Theatre's interpretation of Shakespeare to old Japan. No matter: We've still got our hands full on this side, with a bushwhacking Aussie Petruchio (Nick Barnes) who's just as over the top as Debra Gillingham's famously ill-tempered title character, and sparkling supporting work by Liz Beckham and a strong cast..--Byron Woods

New York, New York
Witherspoon Student Center

In the mid-1970s, an intense, runtish film nut named Martin Scorsese was flying high on the wings of Mean Streets, Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore and Taxi Driver. But this most fervent keeper of the cinematic flame was also flying through thick white powder. While Scorsese was involved with this high maintenance mistress, he attempted to thrash out an MGM-style musical that would retain the elements of showmanship he loved while having an up-to-the-minute hipster edge. The film bombed, and Scorsese reluctantly turned to a boxing flick called Raging Bull. Today, New York, New York is regarded affectionately, like a ne'er-do-well child, and tonight the Film Studies department at N.C. State is offering a fresh look and a 35 mm print. The film runs at 7 p.m., and it's free. --David Fellerath

Spader, Fashion Design

Raleigh rock dudes Spader sputter between cool guy swagger and pogo pop with some crunchy bits, and they just finished mastering their debut. They should foil well with Bang! Bang!, Chicago party crashers dubbing themselves "sex rock." Throw in Fashion Design, whose name sounds like they'd be posing, practicing for the runway, but their music disagrees, and it's a teetering night of rock off balance enough to set your cochlea out of whack. --Chris Toenes

Cool John Ferguson
Tir na Nog

View Cool John's sublime presence onstage-- a stoic, bulletproof visage in mirror shades, electric slung left-handed, Hendrix-style--and it's easy to forget his crucial role with the Music Maker Foundation, where he assists in producing many of the artists. This night in Raleigh, though, it's just Cool John and that spiritual muse, with whatever she drops before this gunslinger's fiery shots. This free show starts at 10:30 p.m. --Chris Toenes

Chapel Hill
Kaz Tanashi
Zen Center

A prominent Japanese artist, activist and scholar--who has both translated early Japanese writings into English and released several compilations of work by thirteenth century Zen master Dogen Zenji--Kaz Tanashi will sign books at the center on Highway 86 before holding a painting and calligraphy demonstration. The work will then be auctioned off, with proceeds benefiting the center's Property Fund. The activities run from 7:30-9:30 p.m.

Chapel Hill
On the Road: The Original Scroll
Wilson Library

Dispense with the myths first: Curator Jim Canary says it's not a roll of teletype paper, but something more substantial Jack Kerouac had trimmed to fit into his typewriter. The 48 exposed feet of continuous manuscript reveals its rough childhood; the first foot or so badly chipped, text missing at the edges. Still, there's something undeniably hypnotic about the slowly slipping left-hand margin, which Kerouac had to keep adjusting as he typed; the repeating zig-zag of text down this long page suggests a black-and-white TV whose horizontal hold has gone on the blink. (For a glimpse before you go, see http://www.npr.org/programs/atc/features/2005/feb/kerouac/scroll.html). --Byron Woods

The Nevers

If you're a little fuzzy on the definition of "pop-rock," get thee to a Nevers show. Fur-vested Gene Tart is not shy about embodying the frontguy/showman role, Dennis Bandiero handles the Rick Nielsen/Pete Ham moments, and Michael Batts keeps it all together with energetic drumming. The bass player got a mention last write-up, so he gets nothing this time out. Music starts at 10, and as always at Slim's (other than the occasional benefit), there's no cover. --Rick Cornell

Chapel Hill
Los Lobos
Memorial Hall

It would be cool to be in one of the world's best rock bands; of course, it would be cooler to be in one of the world's best rock bands and to never mention it, even if you knew it. Their last studio album, The Ride, spanned it all--straight-up soul with Bobby Womack, goofy weirdom with Tom Waits and intercontinental folk with Richard Thompson--with a steady hand that proclaimed, "Yeah, we can handle it." In fact, it takes a special band to release its first live album--Live at the Filmore, a smokin' electric guitar joint that moves effortlessly from punk bop to classic rock to below-the-border nod--just before embarking on an acoustic tour. On the heels of its reopening, Memorial Hall gets a break and won't get slammed with guitars, but it may be a while before its new walls hear anything this extensive and eclectic. --Grayson Currin

Hayti Heritage Center

Afro-Amigos marks the U.S. premiere of work by Venezuelan cellist and composer Paul Desenne and the world premiere of Grist for the Mill, a piece by Duke professor and composer Anthony Kelley, identified for his work with samples in art music. Local musicians--from African drummers and Spanish percussionists to the Mallarme's flautist--come together in this bi-lingual program to explore the solid link and possible syngergy between African and South American rhythms. The Cumbia Dance Troupe joins the musicians onstage. The music starts at 3 p.m., and it's free. --Grayson Currin

Chapel Hill
The Slow Poisoners
The Cave

Maybe some deadly potion was involved in the mysterious disappearance of three-fourths of The Slow Poisoners, but--in any event--Andrew Poisoner is the last one standing. As such, he's doing the one-man psyche/surreal thing by himself, pounding a bass drum and picking a homemade guitar in a way-out-West concoction that owes as much to The Cramps as it does to Marc Bolan. And, if you've ever enjoyed the comic "Ogner Stump's One Thousand Sorrows," here's your chance to meet the artist, the Poisoner himself. Get sick at 9 p.m. for free. --Grayson Currin

Delta Aid Hurricane Relief

This particular benefit matches groove-driven bands with West African rhythms in a stew reminiscent of the gumbo ya ya flavors of New Orleans life. Kora master Mamadou Diabate would be a treat on any given occasion; here he and the other respected musicians on the bill devote their work to ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), a New Orleans-based non-profit serving low and moderate-income communities. Additional donations (cash or check) encouraged. Pleas see www.acorn.org. The show starts at 7 p.m. and door is $7. --Chris Toenes

Wednesday next
Books on Tape

If this simile means nothing--Books on tape is like Prefuse 73 finding the samples and twiddling the knobs for a Four Tet soundtrack to some massive action scene with cars, girls and guns--how's this?: California's Todd Drootin is Books on Tape, a self-described "beatpunk" that solutes squelched noise, cheap keys and deep diggin' samples into a solvent of massively busted cheap beats. Opening tourmate The Show is the Rainbow does electro-clash punk one-man style, having schizophrenic conversations with himself about avoiding the world by staying home (or not). Get down at 10 p.m. for $6. --Grayson Currin

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