"Lilith Fair" featuring Sarah McLachlan, Jewel, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Paula Cole, and Suzanne Vega: Among the stampede of summer package tours is this caravan of topflight female singers/songwriters, ranging widely in style from the ethereal angst of Canada's McLachlan to the East Coast country of Carpenter to the industrial folk of New York City's Vega. Veteran jazz/soul singer Cassandra Wilson anchors the second-stage lineup, which includes youngsters Leah Andreone, Lauren Hoffman, and the duo September 67. (For more information about McLachlan and the tour, see the story on page 90.) Showtime is 4:30 p.m. Thursday, July 10, at Desert Sky Pavilion, 2121 North 83rd Avenue. Tickets range from $25.25 to $46.75, available at the scene and Ticketmaster; some two-for-one lawn passes may remain (call 254-7599 or 784-4444). Andreone and Vega host separate (and gratis) preshow performances/signings on Thursday. Andreone's begins at noon at Borders Books & Music at Biltmore Fashion Park, 24th Street and Camelback, Suite 200 (call 957-6660); Vega's follows at 3 p.m. at the Borders store at 7320 West Bell in Glendale (call 487-9110).
"Summer Spectacular" Art Walk: Various premieres and related events are planned during this annual midsummer-night stroll, a special edition of Scottsdale Gallery Association's weekly art-walk series. The free event is scheduled for 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, July 10, centered on Main Street and Marshall Way in Scottsdale's downtown arts district. For specifics see the Art Exhibits listing or call 990-3939.
"Zandra Rhodes: The Surface and Beyond": The English fashion maven has been one of the isle's top designers and clothiers of mod Brits from mid-'60s Carnaby Street to mid-'70s punk and onward. This installation at Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central, includes works from Rhodes' vast personal collection of wearables, and is presented as a precursor to the UK/AZ Festival, coming up in October. "The Surface and Beyond" continues through Sunday, November 2, in PAM's Fashion Design Gallery. Viewing is free; hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays (to 9 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays). For details call 257-1880 or 257-1222.
Loot: The promising Ensemble Theatre has cut its teeth on darkly humorous offerings about patently unfunny stuff, like Paula Vogel's AIDS fantasy The Baltimore Waltz and Israel Horovitz's absurdist character study Line. The troupe continues the tradition with this black farce about institutional and societal wickedness, penned by late British playwright Joe Orton (with a nod to Mark Twain) and centered on a ne'er-do-well who stashes stolen funds in his recently deceased mum's casket and parks mum's remains in a nearby armoir. Opening performances are at 8 p.m. Friday, July 11; 8 p.m. Saturday, July 12; 2 p.m. Sunday, July 13; and 8 p.m. Wednesday, July 16, at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. The production continues through Sunday, July 27. Tickets are $22.50, $18 for students and seniors, available at the center and Ticketmaster; call 994-2787 or 784-4444.
Jerry Jeff Walker and the Gonzo Compadres: The well-aged cosmic/outlaw cowpoke and company are touring behind two discs: the new Scamp, Walker's 27th album, but the first containing all-new Walker material since Driftin' Way of Life in 1969; and the relatively recent live recording Night After Night. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 11, at the Red River Opry, Mill and Washington in Tempe. Tickets are available at the scene and Dillard's; call 829-6779 or 503-5555.
Arizona Sandsharks: The Continental Indoor Soccer League team continues the season with a game against the Sacramento Knights at 7 p.m. Friday, July 11, at America West Arena, First Street and Jefferson. The squad's next home game is at the same time Friday, July 18, versus the Portland Pride. Tickets range from $6 to $18, available at the scene and Dillard's. For details call 833-7150, 379-7800 or 503-5555.
Rusty Zinn Blues Band: The redheaded purist from California, a guitarist/vocalist on his way up via express elevator, returns for shows on Friday, July 11; and Saturday, July 12, at the Rhythm Room, 1019 East Indian School. Local blues Renaissance man Bob Corritore shares the stage. Showtime is 9 p.m. The cover is $5. For details call 265-4842.
"Zandra Rhodes: The Surface and Beyond": See Thursday.
"Canyonland Visions" and "Crossing the Frontier": The former exhibit, organized by Fort Worth, Texas' Amon Carter Museum, features 117 paintings and photos of the Colorado Plateau region dating from the mid-19th century to the late 20th, including 46 recently rediscovered and never-before-displayed watercolors by Prussia-born adventurer/naturalist Heinrich Balduin Msllhausen. The latter installation, sponsored by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and subtitled "Photographs of the Developing West, 1849 to the Present," includes more than 200 works by the likes of William Henry Jackson, Timothy O'Sullivan, Skeet McAuley, A.J. Russell, Robert Adams and Frank Gohlke. "Canyonland Visions" and "Crossing the Frontier" open Saturday, July 12, and continue through Sunday, September 28, in the Steele Gallery at Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central. Viewing hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays (to 9 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays). Special admission (to the Steele Gallery only): $5, $4 for seniors, $2 for students and children age 6 and up, free for younger kids and members; entry is free to all from 5 to 9 p.m. Thursdays. For details call 257-1880 or 257-1222.
Sweet Honey in the Rock: The a cappella group performs heavily percussive gospel and soul strains with an African tinge; it's reminiscent of Bobby McFerrin if he were six righteous females. Showtime is 8 p.m. Saturday, July 12, at the Celebrity Theatre, 440 North 32nd Street. Tickets are $22.50, available at the scene and Dillard's; call 267-1600 or 503-5555.