Pic Hits for the week

thursday
august 15
Continental Indoor Soccer League All-Star Game: Phoenix and its on-hiatus CISL franchise, the Arizona Sandsharks, are hosts of this year's bash, the second annual. Tatu, Sandshark Donny Gaillard, Dale Ervine and other league stars are scheduled to take the field at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, August 15, at America West Arena, First Street and Jefferson. Tickets range from $6 to $10, available at the arena and Dillard's. For details call 379-7800 or 678-2222.

Grease!: Tommy Tune's touring production of the '50s musical, starring Adrian Zmed of the '82 movie Grease 2 as Danny Zuko, Mackenzie Phillips (American Graffiti, TV's One Day at a Time) as Rizzo, and Joe Piscopo as oily deejay Vince Fontaine, is back for its second Valley engagement of the year following a February run at Tempe's Gammage Auditorium. Final performances are at 8 p.m. Thursday, August 15; 8 p.m. Friday, August 16; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, August 17; and 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday, August 18, at Symphony Hall, 225 East Adams. Tickets range from $28 to $42, available at the scene and Dillard's. For details call 262-7272 or 678-2222.

King Errisson: The Bahamas-born, Las Vegas-based percussionist/vocalist was discovered by the original 007, Sean Connery, who landed King a small role in Thunderball. Errisson's now one of the music industry's top hired guns, having played with the likes of Smokey Robinson, Paul McCartney, Marvin Gaye and Quincy Jones, the latter whom Errisson resembles musically. (Visually, the bald King could be a stunt double for TV's Mr. Clean.) Errisson takes a break from his current tour with Neil Diamond for a free performance at 7 p.m. Thursday, August 15, at Borders Books & Music at Biltmore Fashion Park, 24th Street and Camelback, Suite 200. The musician also will sign copies of his new CD, Natural Feeling. For details call 957-6660.

The Grapes of Wrath: Frank Galati won a Tony Award for his adaptation of John Steinbeck's landmark novel about the Joad family's flight from the Dust Bowl's devastation to the broken promise of golden California, land of milk, honey and barbarism. The Phoenix-based Actors Group presents Galati's take on Grapes in Center Stage at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe. Final performances are at 8 p.m. Thursday, August 15; 8 p.m. Friday, August 16; 8 p.m. Saturday, August 17; and 2 p.m. Sunday, August 18. Tickets are $16.25. For reservations and details, call 252-8497.

Road Trip: Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering in Prescott: Themed "Long in the Truth: Poems, Songs and Stories for the Working Cowboy," the ninth annual roundup of state and national saddle bards includes readings by Sunny Hancock, Dee Strickland Johnson, Tommy Thomas, Georgie Sicking and Bob Bird and performances by singing-cowpoke acts Lone Prairie, and the Desert Sons. Evening shows are scheduled at 7:30 Thursday, August 15; 8 Friday, August 16; and 5 and 8 Saturday, August 17, at Prescott College Elks Opera House, 133 East Gurley; advance tickets for each program are $9, $7 for students and seniors. Free poetry/storytelling sessions are slated for 1 to 5 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at Sharlot Hall Museum, 415 West Gurley. A free reception for the artists starts at 5 p.m. Friday at Phippen Museum of Western Art, located six miles northeast of town at 4701 Highway 89 North. For details call 1-520-445-3122.

friday
august 16
ambersunshower: The African-American alternative artist--known as amber, for short--was half of the Tommy Boy Records duo Groove Garden ("You're Not Coming Home") before going solo. The Harlem native's Gee Street/Island debut, Walter T. Smith, is named for her late grandfather, who introduced the youngster to the sounds of Bessie Smith and James Brown by drumming along to their records on the kitchen table. amber's contemporary influences run more toward De La Soul, the Smiths and the Artist Formerly Known As Prince, and her sound falls somewhere between experimental soul and hard scat. She performs a free show on Friday, August 16, at Gibson's, 410 South Mill in Tempe. Satellite, and Spinning Jenny share the stage. Showtime is 10 p.m. For details call 967-1234.

"How I Spent My Summer Vacation/Solar Lobotomy": The sunburned member artists of MARS Artspace and a few special guests let their collective hair down in this nonjuried, anything-goes installation. It opens with a reception from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday, August 16, and continues through Friday, August 23, at MARS, located at 126 South Central, in Luhrs Office Center. The gallery's regular viewing hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. Admission is free. For details call 253-3541.

The Twinkle Brothers: The long-lived group, which originated on reggae's home planet of Jamaica and is now based in London, plays a rare Valley gig on Friday, August 16, at Electric Ballroom, 1216 East Apache in Tempe. Della Grant shares the bill. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 the day of the show, available at Ticketmaster. For details call 894-0707 or 784-4444.

National UFO Awareness Week Fair: The Arizona chapter of Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) hosts this consciousness-raising affair at Christown Mall, 19th Avenue and Bethany Home. Highlights include live interviews with alleged abductees by MUFON investigators and lots of video clips and literature. Hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, August 16; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, August 17; and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, August 18. Admission is free; call 242-9074. NUFOA Week continues through Sunday. MUFON's "UFO hot line" is 1-800-836-2166. Note: Arizona MUFON holds chapter meetings at 7:30 p.m. on the fourth Wednesday of each month at--oh, sweet irony--the National Guard Armory at 5636 East McDowell; call 967-6265.

Johnny Dyer: The hard-core West Coast blues harpist, backed by the Valley's Hoodoo Kings, returns for shows at 9 p.m. Friday, August 16; and the same time Saturday, August 17, at the Rhythm Room, 1019 East Indian School. The cover is $4. For details call 265-4842.

Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering in Prescott: See Thursday.
The Grapes of Wrath: See Thursday.
Grease!: See Thursday.

saturday
august 17
"The Art of Decay": The IndependANT Artists Network sponsors this show, which features multimedia works centering on a theme of decomposition, natural and industrial, by Jane Cooper, David Lucero, C.A. Moeller, Laura Greenberg, Shirin Tolle Ryan and others. The exhibit opens with a reception at 7 p.m. Saturday, August 17, featuring a poetry reading and drama, music and "Oriental cabaret dance" performances; it continues through Saturday, September 21. The scene is 11 East Ashland, located off Central, two blocks south of Virginia. Regular viewing hours: 3 to 9 p.m. Wednesdays, noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays and by appointment. Admission is free. For details call 257-8543.

Phoenix Firebirds: The Valley's Triple A affiliate of baseball's San Francisco Giants continues its Pacific Coast League season with games against the Vancouver Canadians at 7:05 p.m. Saturday, August 17; 6:05 p.m. Sunday, August 18; 7:05 p.m. Monday, August 19; and 7:05 p.m. Tuesday, August 20, at Scottsdale Stadium, 7408 East Osborn. The team's next home series is slated for Thursday, August 22, through Sunday, August 25, versus the Albuquerque Dukes. Tickets range from $3 to $7. For details call 275-0500.

Fairgrounds Antique Market: The market, the state's largest, continues its tenth season this weekend. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, August 17; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, August 18, at Arizona State Fairgrounds, 19th Avenue and McDowell. Admission is $1; accompanied children age 14 and under get in free. Fairgrounds parking costs $4 per vehicle. For details call 258-6711 or 943-1766.

Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering in Prescott: See Thursday.
Johnny Dyer: See Friday.
The Grapes of Wrath: See Thursday.
Grease!: See Thursday.
"How I Spent My Summer Vacation/Solar Lobotomy": See Friday.
National UFO Awareness Week Fair: See Friday.

sunday
august 18
The Cure: Robert Smith and his British crew are touring once again, this time in support of their tenth studio disc, Wild Mood Swings (Elektra), which has been widely billed as an upbeat change of pace for the band that refined the art of gloom. It's a convenient hook--the Cure cheers up--but not entirely accurate, given that the group's been slowly but surely improving its outlook since 1985's The Head on the Door. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. Sunday, August 18, at America West Arena, First Street and Jefferson. Tickets are $24.10 and $29.45 in advance, $25.70 and $31.05 the day of the show, available at the arena and Dillard's. Call 379-7800 or 678-2222.

Raymond Moody: The author of the best sellers Life After Life and Reunions: Visionary Encounters With Departed Loved Ones is an expert in the field of near-death experience. He speaks about "Life, Death and the Beyond" at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, August 18, at Radisson Resort Scottsdale, 7171 North Scottsdale Road. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the scene. Call 970-8543.

Arizona Blues Showdown: Phoenix Blues Society sponsors the sixth annual gathering of state bluesicians, who vie for a trip to Memphis, Tennessee, for October's International Blues Talent Competition. Between 20 and 25 acts compete in preliminary rounds at 1 and 7 p.m. Sunday, August 18, at the Rhythm Room, 1019 East Indian School. The top four acts from each session return for the finals, slated for 1 and 5:30 p.m. Sunday, August 25, at the same venue. The cover is $5 for the prelims, $6 for the finals. Call 265-4842 or 252-0599.

Fairgrounds Antique Market: See Saturday.
The Grapes of Wrath: See Thursday.
Grease!: See Thursday.
National UFO Awareness Week Fair: See Friday.
Phoenix Firebirds: See Saturday.

monday
august 19
The Carpetbaggers: The honky-tonk trio from Minneapolis is on the road in support of its HighTone debut, Sin Now . . . Pray Later, which includes a heapin' helpin' of twisted twangers like "My Jeannie's in a Bottle," the austere jewel "War Between the States," and "Suburban Boy," a silly send-up of John Denver's "Thank God I'm a Country Boy." Flathead shares the stage. Showtime is 8 p.m. Monday, August 19, at the Rockin' Horse, 7316 East Stetson in Scottsdale. Tickets are available at the scene and Ticketmaster. Call 949-0992 or 784-4444.

Phoenix Firebirds: See Saturday.

tuesday
august 20
emmet swimming: The damn-the-torpedoes quartet from Fairfax, Virginia, prides itself on playing where no self-respecting trend-core act from nearby Washington, D.C., has played before (frat bashes, bar mitzvahs, resorts), and you've got to admire its independent-cuss approach. You've really got to admire its slag on Veruca Salt--that blatant record-company creation--in the song "Sellout," which hails from emmet's second Epic disc, the Don Dixon-produced Arlington to Boston. The all-ages show starts at 8 p.m. Tuesday, August 20, in the Fender Showcase Room at Electric Ballroom, 1216 East Apache in Tempe. The cover is $5. Call 894-0707.

"Chameleon Jo": Actress/comedian Sally Jo Bannow, backed by pianist Craig Bohmler, wraps up Herberger Theater Center's "Summer Cabaret" series with shows at 8 p.m. Tuesday, August 20; and the same time Wednesday, August 21, in Stage West at the center, 222 East Monroe. Tickets are $13.25. Call 252-8497.

"How I Spent My Summer Vacation/Solar Lobotomy": See Friday.
Phoenix Firebirds: See Saturday.

wednesday
august 21
"Beat the Heat" Botanical Tour: The guided walk through Desert Botanical Garden, 1201 North Galvin Parkway, in Papago Park, offers a temperate way to experience the well-baked garden. The tour steps off at 7 a.m. Wednesday, August 21. Participation is free with regular admission: $6, $5 for seniors, $1 for kids ages 5 to 12, free for those younger. Call 941-1225.

"The Art of Decay": See Saturday.
"Chameleon Jo": See Tuesday.
"How I Spent My Summer Vacation/Solar Lobotomy": See Friday.

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