It's pretty hard to miss the fixed-gear cyclists at First Friday. They're the skinny, tattooed cats you tend to see swarming around the intersection of Fifth and Roosevelt Streets, riding atop their stylish-and-sleek urban single-speed racing bikes.
As I mentioned in my cover story from last summer on fixed-gear culture, the monthly art walk is usually a major gathering point for local fixies. Dozens of riders usually come out to the event to show off some stunning-looking tricks or ride in a huge pack down to the Bikini Lounge or Lost Leaf to have a pitcher or two.
So it's only appropos that the event is serving at the seeting for the Arizona premiere of the fixie documentary Death Pedal. The bike flick was created by SoCal filmmaker and rider Kareem Shehab about the growth of fixed-gear usage in cities across the world, including right here in the Valley. Several local riders are featured, like graphic artist Terrence "Terror Boy" Murtagh (who was featured on our cover last year). I've also heard that there's going to be a monthly critical mass bicycle ride every month, so chances are likely that you'll be seeing more and more cyclists during First Friday.
Death Pedal is scheduled to screen tonight at the super-fly Grandiose Records & Gear, 104 East Pierce Street, and starts at 10 p.m. But films about fixie fanatics aren't the only thing happening tonight, as the usual mix of arts, music, and mayhem will take place. There's even going to be dueling burlesque events, as the Trunk Space has booked the Pretty Things Peepshow, while Alwun House plans to feature the gals of Provocatease. Who's the winner in this battle of the buxom babes? I think we all are, bub.
Read on for compilation of what's going on.
Afida's Hair Culture
116 East Roosevelt Street
DJ Tony Culture will be spinning reggae, dancehall, and old-school music starting at 8 p.m. Call 602-258-4992.
718 North Fourth Street
Vanessa Atalanta will perform. 8 p.m., free.
901 North Fifth Street
Get a java pick-me-up while enjoying the music from The Haymarket Squares, and other bands. 5 p.m. Call 602-237-5446.
Drop In Gallery
917 North Fifth Street
Homless artist contribute their art work to the DIG's monthly First Friday show. Acoustic/americana performers Laura Stevenson, Hunger Artists, and The Other 49 provide the music. 7 p.m. Call 602-257-4454.
419 East Roosevelt Street
The closing reception for Angela Cazel Jahn's "Idea Series" exhibition, featuring a collection of her resin-coated collages, will be held. (Click here for Wynter Holden's preview.) 5 p.m., free. Call 602-430-1490.
515 East Roosevelt Street
A special invitation-only exhibition will be the main focus of this RoRo mainstay, with a cadre of artists (including Meghan Calhoun, Kimberly Harris, Erich Neitzke, and Audrey Jones) showing off their stuff. 6 p.m. Call 602-256-0150.
The Free Street Band
Various locations along Roosevelt Row
The roving bagpipe band will be walking throughout the Evans Churchill Neighborhood starting at 7 p.m.
918 North Fifth Street
The hip-hop artists of Dusty South Entertainment are scheduled to perform. 7 p.m. Call 480-577-6455.
The Lost Leaf
914 North 5th Street
The paintings of Landy Headley will be on display, Tucson's Daniel Martin Diaz provides the music, and plenty of beers will be served. 5 p.m. Call 602-258-0014.
407 East Roosevelt Street
The mixed-media painter Kristin Bauer, which are dominated by issues of the feminine experience, will be on display. 6 p.m. Call 602-462-5516.
610 East Roosevelt Street, Unit 137
An opening reception will be held for collage artist David Van Alphen's 70s-esque "Welcome to Netherland" showcase. (Lilia Menconi's rundown can be found here.) 6 p.m. Call 602-334-6299.
501 East Roosevelt Street
The Chicano artist pair of Vincent "El Diablito" Valdez and Alex Rubio are featured. (Steve JAnsen's preview can be found here6 p.m., free. Call 602-363-2552.
909 North Fifth Street
Stop by the funky gallery to scope out the even-funkier paintings of Jules Demetrius and Mr. 43. Pickster One and the other DJs of Universatile Music will spin. 6 p.m., free.
Deus Ex Machina
1023 Grand Avenue
This art space is planning a collective art show will feature work from Michele Bledsoe, Richard Bledsoe, Jeff Falk, Steve Gompf, and Annie Lopez, as well as live music by local band Last Wave. 6 p.m. Call 602-487-0669.
1030 Grand Avenue
Derrick and Gina Suarez's Grand Avenue eatery will be filled with the sounds of rockers Graceful Degredation, hot spins from DJ Paul Raya, and the photographry of Layna McHorter. 7 p.m. Call 602-254-7843.
1506 Grand Avenue
The sexy strip-teasing sirens of California's Pretty Things Peepshow will be the biggest (and barest) thing going on tonight along Grand Avenue when they take it all off at the Trunk Space. (Click here for Jose Gonzalez's preview.) 11 p.m., $5. Call 602-256-6006.
DOWNTOWN & ELSEWHERE:
After Hours Gallery
116 West McDowell Road
Break out of your usual First Friday habit of ambling down Roosevelt Row or Grand Avenue and stop by After Hours to view Isse Fresh's "Butterscotch Swag" during it's opening reception. (Click here for Lilia Menconi's preview.) 7 p.m. Call 602-710-2398.
1204 East Roosevelt Street
Skin is apparently "in" at this month's First Friday, as Alwun House will also be hosting a ladies getting down to their unmentionables. Female folkster Michelle Blades opens the show. 9:30 p.m., $15. A free artists reception will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. with food, drink, and live entertainment. $7 admission. Call 602-253-7887.
Breadfruit Authentic Jamaican Grill
108 East Pierce Street
Reggae band Purple Kush presents an evening of irie music. 7:30 p.m. Call 602-267-1266.
Burton Barr Central Library
1221 North Central Avenue
Members of the engineering team that helped construct Janet Echelman's Her secret is patience aerial sculpture at the Downtown Civic Space Park will speak about how they made it happened. (Click here for Lilia Menconi's preview.) 6 p.m. Call 602-495-0185.
First Christian Church
6750 North Seventh Avenue
Valley bands The Irish Front and The Baby Lottery will perform. 6:30 p.m. $8-$10. Call 602-246-9206.
Hob Nob's Coffee House
149 West McDowell Road
Jazz/R&B artist Kevin Peart and folkster Kevin Peart will serenade patrons. 7 p.m. Call 602-253-9220.
138 West Camelback Road
The DJs of Party Foul! (including Kevin the Makeout Bandit, Bigie, and BC/AD) will stage their weekly dancefest. 9 p.m. No cover before 11 p.m., $6 afterwards. Call 602-234-3023.
Hotel San Carlos
202 North Central Avenue
Jen Deveroux presents the "Tune in Tokyo" after-party at the vintage hotel's rooftop pool, which features spin sessions from The Boom Kidz, Pantyf1sh, We're Stoked, and others. 10 p.m., $2. Call 866-253-4121.
Phoenix Art Museum
1625 North Central Avenue
There's no shortage of stuff to see and do at PAM during First Friday. Admission to every single exhibition is free and there's plenty of pretty art on the walls. Besides Mark Klett and Byron Wolfe stunning photographs of the Grand Canyon (check out Steve Jansen's preview), you can also peruse "In Contemporary Rhythm: The Art of Ernest L. Blumenschein," "Medievalism: Fashion's Romance With the Middle Ages," and even get in a wine tasting. 6 p.m. Call 602-257-1222.
4214 North Seventh Avenue
A full slate of rock 'n' roll is promised featuring Sister Cities, Thee Jaguar Sharks, Destoroyah, & more. 7 p.m. Call 602-795-4980.
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The Ruby Room Lounge
717 South Central Avenue
Downtown indie band The Necronauts will rock the SoDo club, along with Dry River Yacht Club, Skinwalkers, and the Tremulants. 9 p.m. $5. Call 602-258-0069.
1514 East Seventh Avenue
Matt Priebe "Ghost Girl" series of oil paintings will hang from the walls of the chic lounge. Call 602-254-1646.
75 North Second Street
Excerpts from film scores from Goldfinger, The Spy Who Loved Me, and myriad other James Bond films will be performed as the Phoenix Symphony presents a musical tribute to the world's greatest (fictional) secret agent. 8 p.m., $26-$76. Call 602-262-7272.
705 North First Street
The bluesy/folsky duo of Michael Lander and Meredith Moore (a.k.a. The Sugar Thieves) will delight the drinkers at this downtown pub. 9 p.m. Call 602-296-5043.