The Hot List: This to do this weekend

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Smoove operator

You might know him as Leon Black on "Curb Your Enthusiasm," and if so, he's provided you with countless laughs over the past few seasons.

This weekend, J.B. Smoove turns up at the Pittsburgh Improv at the Waterfront to show you what he can do without Larry David around.

Along with being a stand-up comic and writer for "Saturday Night Live," he has appeared in the films "The Dictator," "Think Like a Man" and "We Bought a Zoo," and has been featured on Comedy Central's "Tough Crowd" and "Jamie Foxx Presents: Laffapalooza."

More recently, he premiered his first televised comedy special, "JB Smoove: That's How I Dooz It," on Comedy Central, and did the voice of Boris the wild boar in "Ice Age: Continental Drift," opening in theaters Friday.

Showtimes are 8 tonight; 8 and 10 p.m. Friday and 7 and 9 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $20; or 412-462-5233.

Market place

The I Made It! Market -- the city's "nomadic indie craft marketplace" -- pops up at the SouthSide Works this weekend for the SouthSide Works "Exposed" Artists Market.

Seventy regional artists will offer handmade items including jewelry, hand-dyed clothing, housewares, ceramics, handbags, natural bath and body products, and Pittsburgh-themed T-shirts. There will be musicians and entertainers, activities for kids, food vendors and a sidewalk sale.

Hours are 5 to 10 p.m. Friday, noon to 10 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.


The Dave show

Although it announced a new album to be released on Sept. 11 titled "Away From the World," the Dave Matthews Band doesn't seem to be going anywhere. Except, of course, on tour.

The DMB will get a two-night stint at First Niagara Pavilion Friday and Saturday. The band has performed a few songs off the upcoming album in past shows -- including "The Riff."

Rolling Stone reports: "The band's summer tour has been full of surprises, with fans treated to new songs 'Mercy' and rare cuts like the unreleased 'Shotgun' and 1993's "The Song That Jane Likes.' "

The band's previous album, "Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King," its last with late saxophonist LeRoi Moore, went platinum and received an Album of the Year nomination.

The shows begin at 7 p.m. with SOJA. Tickets are $40.50-$75; 1-800-745-3000.


Music everywhere

While the DMB will draw thousands to Burgettstown on Friday, there's a lot happening musically in and around the city.

• Indie-rock veterans Death Cab for Cutie, still touring with the seventh album "Codes and Keys," returns to Stage AE Outdoors, this time with indie-folk sensation Andrew Bird. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $38-$41; 1-800-745-3000.

• Diesel Club Lounge on the South Side will celebrate its sixth year with an appearance by celebrity DJ Lil Jon. It begins at 9 p.m. Go to for ticket information.

• Swamp guitar bluesman Bill Wharton aka The Sauce Boss returns to Moondog's in Blawnox, promoting his long-awaited live CD "Live at the Green Parrot," recorded last fall in Key West. It begins at 9 p.m. and tickets are $15.

• Chicago Afrobeat group the Occidental Brothers Dance Band performs in the Cultural District as part of the Summer Gallery Crawl (see page W-15).

• The free Iron City Sound Downtown series at Market Square continues from 5 to 8 p.m. with Tom Watt, also known as "The Buffett Man."


Lighter 'Metals'

Leslie Feist, who goes by Feist, came into play with the "1234" Apple commercial, but we quickly learned there was a lot more to her than that.

The Canadian solo artist (and occasional member of Broken Social Scene) is a talented singer-songwriter with a sensitive, soulful touch and one of those voices, like Joni Mitchell or Tori Amos, that can do just about anything.

Her breakthrough album, "Reminder," was one of the most acclaimed albums of 2007, and she took care to follow that with the well-received "Metals."

Comparing the two records, she told Pitchfork, "I felt 100 percent selfishly satisfied with 'The Reminder.' And I feel the same way with this album. I just made something for myself, and that feels better than any Grammy. I did what I wanted to do."

Along with "Metals," Feist dipped into metal this year for a split single with Mastodon after meeting on the show "Later ... with Jools Holland."

Commenting on her version of "Black Tongue," Mastodon's Bill Kelliher told Rolling Stone, "This dainty girl singing these brutal lyrics. It kind of sent chills up my spine when I heard it."

The show is at Stage AE Outdoors Saturday. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $25-$39.50; 1-800-745-3000.

Doo Dah Days

Stephen Foster's music will ring out in his old neighborhood Saturday for the seventh annual Stephen Foster Music & Heritage Festival, also known as Doo Dah Days.

The Lawrenceville Historical Society and the Allegheny Cemetery Historical Association present it from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Allegheny Cemetery, Butler Street, in Lawrenceville.

There will be a tour of Allegheny Cemetery and Foster's grave, food vendors and four bands performing his best known songs.

Admission is free. Donation requested for horse & wagon and trolley rides. Bring your own chair or blanket.


The Opera Theater of Pittsburgh's ambitious Summerfest comes to a close this weekend at Shady Side Academy with a flamenco version of Bizet's "Carmen" at 7:30 tonight and 2 p.m. Saturday; Bernstein's "Candide" at 7:30 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Sunday; and Mozart's "The Magic Flute" 7:30 p.m. Saturday.

Each is followed by "Night Caps," a series of mini-operas that are set in bedrooms of a hotel, featuring soprano Anna Singer. At 5 p.m. Sunday, all six of the short operas will be performed back-to-back.

It's at Hillman Center, Shady Side Academy, 423 Fox Chapel Road. Tickets start at $20 ($10 for "Night Caps"); 412-326-9687 or


Alice's Nightmare

If you missed Alice Cooper at Stage AE last year, you made a mistake that can be easily rectified by catching him at the same place Sunday.

The difference this time is that "Welcome 2 My Nightmare," his 26th album, is actually out. Still, the set will lean toward the glam-rock classics, delivered with horror-movie visuals.

The USA Today wrote of his Bonnaroo set, "The show featured Cooper's most famous bits: a festishistic infatuation with a life-sized doll, a giant monster that roamed the stage during 'Feed My Frankenstein' and a mock beheading, as well as his 1972 hit 'School's Out,' which now segues into Pink Floyd's 'Another Brick in the Wall, Pt. 2.' But perhaps the most shocking part of the set came at the very end: A heavy-metal cover of Lady Gaga's 'Born This Way,' which turns out to be a perfect song for Alice."

Blue Coupe opens. Doors at 6:30 p.m. $20-$35; 1-800-745-3000.

CRY fest

Indian food, music and culture are on tap Sunday at CRY America Pittsburgh's eighth annual Festival in the Park at Flagstaff Hill, Schenley Park.

CRY (Child Rights and You) America celebrates the cultural contributions of Indians in Pittsburgh with pop music by Anand Mahalingam, Punjabi bhangra dance by Steel City Bhangra, acoustic East/West fusion from the Michael Dodin trio, South Indian classical music by percussionist Charan Rajan, folk and classical dances by Sanskruti School of Indian Dance and Music and Avigna Dance Ensemble, the folk/Americana stylings of Jenn Gooch, and the indie-folk duo Toys Du Jour.

There will be booths for Indian jewelry and crafts, traditional Henna temporary "tattoos," face painting, balloon artistry, games for children and storytelling and crafts by the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

It runs from 5 p.m. till dusk. Admission is free, but there is a charge of about $10 per meal. CRY America supports projects in India and the U.S. that aim to restore basic rights to children in underprivileged and marginalized communities.

Citiparks will show the animated hit "Kung Fu Panda 2" at dusk. For details, call 412-229-7CRY or go to


• The Vans Warped Tour gets rolling bright and early today (noon) at the First Niagara Pavilion with New Found Glory, Anti-Flag, Taking Back Sunday, All Time Low and many more. Admission is $42; 1-800-745-3000.

• The South Park Amphitheater hosts a Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra in a Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald at 7:30 p.m. Friday, while Hartwood Acres has singer-songwriter James Vincent McMorrow at 7:30 p.m. Sunday.

• Classical-rock hybrid Cello Fury performs at Bach, Beethoven & Brunch 10:30 a.m. Sunday at Mellon Park, Shadyside.

• Citiparks Cinema in the Park presents the animated hit "Kung Fu Panda 2" at Brookline Memorial Park tonight; Arsenal Park (Lawrenceville) on Friday; Grandview Park (Mount Washington) on Saturday; and Flagstaff Hill, Schenley Park, on Sunday. Riverview Park (Observatory Hill) has "Mission: Impossible -- Ghost Protocol" on Saturday. All start at dusk.

• The Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble performs works by Evan Ziporyn, Louis Andriessen, Amy Beth Kirsten and Helmut Lachenmann. at City Theatre on the South Side. 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday. $15-$30, free for first-time patrons. 412-431-2489 or

• New Jersey-based blues harmonica player Dennis Gruenling will team up with Detroit's Doug Deming and the Jewel Tones for a show at the Thunderbird Cafe, 4023 Butler St., Lawrenceville, at 8 tonight. Admission is $15; 412-682-0177;

• Mount Carmel -- heavy stoner-rock revivalist band from Columbus -- plays the 31st Street Pub, Strip District, at 10 p.m. Saturday with Dazzletine and Vega. Admission is $7.

• Surf guitar legend Dick Dale returns to Diesel 8 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $25; 1-800-745-3000.

• Nathan Carterette, organist for the Church of the Redeemer, gives a free recital at St. Paul Cathedral in Oakland at 4 p.m. Sunday. 421-621-6082.

• Horror Realm and Eljay's Books of Dormont are presenting a series of readings, discussions and book signings by local horror authors, starting at 2 p.m. Saturday with Matt Demas and his newest zombie novel, "The Fall of Pittsburgh." Admission to the events is free; more at 412-344-7444.

• Another month means another installment of The Pillow Project's ongoing "Second Saturdays" series. This time, the dance company has a steamy evening of jazz music and contemporary movement in store. Joining the dancers at "The SpeakEazy" will be special guest artist Vie Boheme, among a handful of others. It's 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. Saturday at The Space Upstairs in Point Breeze. A $10 donation is suggested at the door. Information:

• Mama Kadiatou of the Balafon West African Dance Ensemble will stage "KIRIDI (THE ORPHAN)" at the Kelly-Strayhorn Theater as part of its FAMILYtime and East Liberty LIVE! summer series. The family friendly Cinderella-esque fairy tale is set in a traditional African village in Guinea and is infused with cultural dancing and percussive rhythms. It's 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m. Saturday. Admission is pay-what-you-can. Information: or 412-363-3000.

theater - artarchitecture - music


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