This Week's Day-by-Day Picks

 THU 24
Scoring points with the girly girls in the crowd, the Phoenix Mercury invite local ladies to America West Arena, 201 East Jefferson, for a Girls Night Out this Thursday, June 24. While the team puts the heat on the New York Liberty, we'll keep our cool with 10-minute manicures from Salon Bela Pelo and rubdowns from Massage Envy. And everybody in the Platinum Club gettin' tipsy, once the martinis and margaritas start flowing. Tickets, $40, include reserved seats in AWA's Platinum Club and one drink coupon; a portion of proceeds benefits Phoenix Mercury charities. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.; tip-off follows at 7. Call 602-252-WNBA or see www.phoenixmercury.com.

FRI 25
Forget playing with dolls. These Dolls are playing with us. Brandishing a guitar with "mind-control penetration capabilities" -- break out the tin foil hat! -- Danny Doll Rod (a.k.a. Dan Kroha of The Gories infamy) and his Demolition Doll Rods rip up The Rogue on Friday, June 25. Straight outta Detroit rock city, the Doll Rods are on the road again in support of their new album, On -- "the first time the band's true heaviness has been captured on tape." An interesting outfit, the band isn't exactly partial to them; according to one local fan, "They pretty much perform in G-strings with random stuff like hot dogs taped to their nipples." (Doesn't exactly sound kosher . . . ) And now we've gotten word that the trio "has upped the ante and has enlisted the help of famous designer for the stars, Tom the Leatherman . . . a Detroit legend that made his name designing the wardrobe for George Clinton. . . . Watch out!" And rock out. Fashion crimes aside, let's not forget that this is supposed to be about the music -- according to Iggy Pop, DDR reigns as "the best band in Detroit." Behold the spectacle at 423 North Scottsdale Road in Scottsdale and at www.demolitiondollrods.com; call 480-947-3580 for more information.

SAT 26
Just for the record, we don't believe in hypnosis. We do, however, believe in making excuses for our objectionable public behavior. We've got a good one this Saturday, June 26, when comic hypnotist Don Rice takes the stage -- and seeing as how it's for charity, we'll try to be agreeable. Showtime is 7 p.m. at the Sunshine Hotel and Resort, Second Avenue and Osborn. Donations will be accepted at the door, with all proceeds benefiting Phoenix Children's Hospital Cancer Center. Call 480-893-9685 for details.

SUN 27
Seems a genuine cafe culture is brewing in Phoenix . . . so buck the Starbucks and bolster local mom-and-pop joints, like Mama Java's Coffeehouse -- a little spot that's big on charm and "dedicated to the concepts of neighborhood, community and open-mindedness." On Sunday, June 27, Mama's got a brand-new bag: Local artist Stephen Michael Barnes unveils "Pictures From My House: A Selection of Paintings, Pastels, Watercolors and Drawings -- 2003-2004." From 7 to 9 p.m., the opening festivities feature performances by violinist Dasha Hlavenka, poet Chris Burawa, performance artists Steve and Theresa Ferreira, and musicians The Real McKays. The show hangs through July 31 at the 'house, 3619 East Indian School. Call 602-840-5282 or see www.lasilencia.com.

MON 28
Catch the Mesa boys of Authority Zero before they reach Warped speed (the Vans Warped Tour touches down at the Peoria Sports Complex on Wednesday, June 30) when they christen Zia Record Exchange's newest location with a free gig this Monday, June 28. Touting the release of its second album, Andiamo, the band plays a pre-grand opening party at the Chandler store -- on the northeast corner of Dobson and Chandler Boulevard -- at 11 p.m., an hour before the new album hits the shelves. To get in on the gig, drop into an existing Zia Records location -- at 40th Street and Thunderbird, 19th Avenue and Thunderbird, Mill and University in Tempe, or 25th Avenue and Indian School -- to make an advance purchase of the CD. A wristband allows entry into the Chandler Zia to see the band perform. Call 480-894-6640 or see www.ziarecords.com for details.

TUE 29
Overly social drinkers will have to put a cork in it at Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar, where the "Flights of Fancy" Summer Wine Tasting and Speaker Series takes off this Tuesday, June 29. Thirsty for knowledge? Listen up, as local experts expound on a variety of topics. Just plain thirsty? Drink up: Sample two wine flights (three two-ounce samplings) from Fleming's list of 100 wines by the glass. Joel Robin, jazz pianist and executive director of Jazz in AZ, takes the podium at 6:30 p.m. at the restaurant's Scottsdale location, 6333 North Scottsdale Road, to discuss "The History of Jazz in the U.S. and Arizona." Call 480-596-8265 for reservations, $25 per person.

WED 30
She marches to the beat of a frame drum. Loca Rosa also wails on the lute, the balalaika (a triangular stringed instrument) and the loshki (Russian clicking spoons) while performing folk songs in English, Russian, Yiddish, Hebrew, Ladino, Spanish and French, "with the occasional Irish and Scottish song thrown in." The multi-culti songstress mixes it up for Mesa's Summer Spotlite Series this Wednesday, June 30. Cloaked in colorful ethnic costumes, the "irrepressible troubadour" of "Russian-Jewish music, dance and legend" joins forces with the Byelaroza Eastern European Folk Dance & Music Ensemble, a group which -- as if the cultural stew weren't meaty enough -- draws from "Russian, Jewish, Gypsy, Judeo-Spanish, and Near and Middle Eastern cultures." They plunder the global village at 10:30 a.m. at the Dobson Ranch Branch Library, 2425 South Dobson, and 1:30 p.m. at the Jefferson Gym, 120 South Jefferson. Admission to both one-hour performances is free. Call 480-644-2242 for more information.

 
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