Staffpicks for 2-6-08

Friday, Feb. 8
InKY Reading Series

    This monthly event has brought literature from the page to the stage, says director Erin Keane, for four solid years now. “We’re proud to be part of such a vibrant and diverse art scene. Louisville has been a wonderful host and home to InKY — we wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.” The reading and music series throws itself a fourth birthday party Friday night at its home base, the Rudyard Kipling, with some fairly big names in Kentucky writing circles. Frank X Walker, who just released his poetry collection “When Winter Come,” will take the mic, as will fiction author Janna McMahan (“Calling Home”) and creative nonfiction writer Emily Bonden. Singer-songwriter Joe Manning (see interview on page 34) starts the evening with music from his third album, Clever Bird. And the best treat? It’s all free. And there might even be cake. —Sara Havens
Rudyard Kipling
422 W. Oak St.
Free; 7 p.m.

Friday, Feb. 8
David is Goliath

When Townes Van Zandt calls you his favorite songwriter, you’ve got a lot to live up to, but David Olney doesn’t sound like a man who needs to live up to anyone’s expectations.
Olney, whose 1970s band The X-Rays once toured with Elvis Costello, has gone on to put his stamp on folk and blues music with unbridled zeal; he follows no one. He’s been called “a jalapeño in a bowl of vanilla pudding,” that he “drips with menace,” and oscillates between “obstreperous glee and naked terror.”
He doesn’t think people are on a never-ending quest to describe his personality. “What I do is a little odd or different, so the descriptions tend to be over the top.”
Olney’s new album, One Tough Town, recalls 1920s and ’30s vaudeville and ’50s R&B. “My idea of rock ’n’ roll goes back to the ’50s. Probably all of entertainment was healthier then than it is now,” he says. “The best writers were getting their songs to the best singers. There wasn’t this cult of the songwriter, and that kept the game a bit more honest.”
Town’s musicians are ones Olney had never played with before, which kept the sessions focused. “Whatever communication was gonna go on, was gonna be about the music.” —Mat Herron
OKOM House Concert Series
6803 Taffy Ann Drive
$TBA; 8 p.m.

Saturday, Feb 9
Winter Shrinkage II

    Brad Thacker, standup comic and recent fellow Louisvillian, joins comedians Mike Cody, Linda Gambino and Chris Wagel for their second annual celebration of comedy at the Pour Haus. The night opens with standup, interrupted with commercial parodies by Holy Muckle, and continues late into the night with music by Kentucky Prophet. And, as an extra bonus, you might be an extra: Shots of the audience will be filmed Saturday night for the indie movie “Tickle Town” (a dark comedy about a comic written by Louisvillians Fred Fischer and Eric Seibert). In addition to local performances, Thacker opens nationwide for The Killers of Comedy (characters from the Howard Stern Show), and has opened for Dave Attell, Mitch Hedberg and Dave Chappelle, to namedrop a few. —Jason Sitzes
Pour Haus
1481 S. Shelby St.
$5;10:30 p.m.

Feb. 9-10
Doubling up at Stevie Ray’s

Ex-Hammerheads guitarist Greg Foresman is scratching an itch this weekend. Foresman, who also tours with country maven Martina McBride, joins Greg Martin of the Kentucky Headhunters for a special performance. Foresman promises mostly originals from his album, De Nada, but a Muddy Waters or Taj Mahal cover might creep into a show that is Foresman’s chance to cut loose.
    “The two kind of complement each other,” he says of his solo work with McBride, “it’s anything but a creative release for me; she’s trying to make the band sound as much like the album as possible. It’s still fun to play to (7,000) people every night.”
    By the time he hops off the tour bus, he digs in with his own group. “I’m jonesing to do it,” he says. “I don’t play anything I don’t like. It’s much more of an improvisation.”
    Foresman plans to release a live CD/DVD of a show he played several months ago at the Park Theatre in North Vernon, Ind. Expect that to drop in six months.
    And on Sunday, Stevie Ray’s hosts its first Hall of Fame Benefit for Animal Care Society, Louisville’s only no-kill shelter. Travelin’ Mojos, King Bees, Lamont Gillespie & 100 Proof Blues, Hellfish and The Predators perform.
The benefit means a lot to Stevie Ray’s general manager Todd Webster, who adopted his first pet, Sparky, from the shelter 10 years ago. “He has been a very special friend to me, and I now find myself in a position to give back to this charity, a little bit of the joy that they gave me.”
Lamont Gillespie and Bob Ramsey will be inducted into the Stevie Ray’s Hall of Fame, and there will be cash prizes and a raffle. —Mat Herron
Greg Foresman Band
Saturday, Feb. 9
$5; 9 p.m.

Animal Care Society Benefit
Sunday, Feb. 10
$5; 4 p.m.

Stevie Ray’s Blue Bar
230 E. Main St.

Sunday, Feb. 10
For the Love of Music

    Oh, for the love of Mike … no, wait! Make that “For the Love of Music.” It’s the annual fundraising dinner, music and silent auction event benefiting the Louisville Youth Choir this Sunday at The Olmsted. The Youth Choir includes more than 75 student singers representing 30 schools in the Louisville area. Established in 1967, the LYC is affiliated with the Ursuline School for the Performing Arts and holds open tryouts throughout the year. —Bill Doolittle
The Olmsted
3701 Frankfort Ave.
$40 ($300 for tables of eight); 7 p.m.

A.K.A.C.O.D. @ Pink Door

    “His timing is impeccable,” Dana Colley says as his child screams from the backseat. Colley, however, doesn’t sound rattled as he talks about his past — life as a saxophonist/co-founder of Morphine in 1989 — and his present tour with new group A.K.A.C.O.D.
    Beloved in indie rock circles, Morphine unplugged in 1999 after Mark Sandman died from a heart attack while onstage in Italy, giving an ominous finality to the band’s last record, The Night.
But Colley’s ambitions to play didn’t subside. Since Morphine’s demise, he’s remained involved in Sandman’s venerated studio, Hi-N-Dry, and found time to team up with Monique Ortiz (ex-Bourbon Princess), whom he met on tour with Morphine in Pennsylvania. Ortiz relocated to Cambridge, Mass. — first to record, then permanently — and following a series of inspired rehearsals/recording sessions, the two, along with drummer Larry Dersch, released their first full-length, Happiness.
    Ortiz is the creative fulcrum of a group that will inevitably be compared to its predecessor, but Colley embraces those comparisons.
    “I’m very proud of that legacy, and the fact that Morphine has had an impact,” he says. “The fact that we can be compared and are being compared is only a credit to what we’re doing now. A band that I was part of being compared with the band that I’m in now: I don’t run from it at all, I welcome it.” —Mat Herron
The Pink Door
2222 Dundee Road
$6; 8 p.m.

Through Feb. 23
14th Annual African-American Art Exhibit

    Actors Theatre’s tradition of showing juried paintings, sculpture and photographs by African-American artists is in its 14th year, and its longevity is its calling card. Viewers know they will see a variety of subject matter and techniques from the 34 artists from nine states. Louisville is well represented in the 72 pieces, with work by Aukram Burton, Bud Dorsey, Eric L. Gholston, Imani Nicole and Ann S. Reynolds.  
    Dorsey’s photograph “Slave Badge” is jarring in its simplicity. More images from his current body of work, “Images of Slavery (Runaway to Freedom),” are showing at the Western branch of the Free Public Library during February.
    Artist Kevin Cole from Atlanta was the juror this year, and he’s a powerhouse. His work resides in the permanent collections of Yale University Art Gallery and Washington, D.C.’s Corcoran Gallery of Art, plus in some prominent private collections, like Michael Jordan’s. He’s also chairman of the visual arts magnet department at Westlake High School. —Jo Anne Triplett
Lobby Gallery, Actors Theatre
316 W. Market St.

Through March 30
‘The Paper Doll Quilts of Rebekka Seigel’

    Paper dolls were what dreams were made of for textile artist Rebekka Seigel. She has revisited her 1950s childhood by stitching her memories onto 13 colorful quilts featuring paper doll patterns. They were inspired by women who are highly accomplished in their fields, including Lucille Ball and “Babe” Didrikson.
    Ball’s “Queen of Comedy” quilt reminds us of some of her great television series episodes, like grape stomping in Italy and “Vitameatavegamin.” The four-time Emmy winner was the first woman to head a television production company in the 1940s and was named one of Time magazine’s “100 Most Important People of the Century” in 2000.
    Both the Associated Press and Sports Illustrated named Mildred “Babe” Didrikson Zaharias the greatest female athlete of the 20th century in 1999. Not only did she win three medals in track and field at the 1932 Olympics in Los Angeles, she later took up golf, winning 17 straight amateur tournaments (a record not even Tiger Woods could beat). She won a total of 82 amateur and professional tournaments in her golfing career.
    Paper dolls and quilts, traditionally thought of as “women’s work,” have never looked so fresh — and feminist. —Jo Anne Triplett
Frazier International History Museum
829 W. Main St.