Me and Mrs. Jones

(We got a thing going on)

January 28, 2009

I know, I know, you’ll probably be propped up on a couch filling your head hole with an assortment of chips, dips, and beer (as will I), but before you work a good butt groove into that recliner why not check out some of the other nooks and crannies the weekend as to offer.


Who said soul is dead? Not us certainly. But inundated as we are with radio-friendly neo-soul that relies on heaps of synthesizers, canned horns, vocoders, and autotune, we don’t blame you for prematurely mourning its demise.

So it’s all the more reason to shout it from the mountain top that Sharon Jones and her mighty, mighty Dap-Kings are playing the Crystal Ballroom this evening. Not since the Stax heyday of Booker T. and Otis and the Staple Singers has Southern flavored, from-the-gut rhythm and blues sounded so legit. Close your eyes and you feel like you’re back in Memphis, 1968. The sultry brass, sexy bottom-heavy funk, a voice that could shear the wool off a lamb, and the man-eating attitude to match.

In a town with a music scene so largely painted in the various pale shades of rock and roll (nothing wrong with that, by the way), it’s great to be treated to something so spectacularly raw. Bring a date, throw down the $21 without a thought, and let Ms. Jones and her Dap-Kings do their thing. Play your cards right and you just might get lucky. [Crystal Ballroom/9 p.m./$21]


In the Marky Mark Wahlberg stink-fest, “Invincible,” the former Funky Buncher played a Philly dude who (against all odds, naturally) earned a spot on the Philadelphia Eagles during an open tryout. Massage that script just a tad and substitute Wahlberg for a Portland area woman and the NFL for women’s professional soccer and you too might one day inspire a true Hollywood story. (Though you’ll have to supply your own hardships.)

Portland’s newest major league team, the Portland Rain of the Women’s Premiere Soccer League, are holding tryouts today in advance of their inaugural season. Things get started Saturday at 1 p.m. at the Stott Rec Center on the PSU campus with a walk-up registration fee of $60. After that it’s up to you to try and wow the Rain coaches with your mad array of dribbles, corner kicks, and headers. When you become the next Mia Hamm, just remember who sent you (in your movie we request to be referred to as Captain Awesome).


I just finished binging on five seasons worth of “The Wire.” One of the more colorful characters was the smack-addicted street vendor Bubbles. Bubs paid his bills (i.e. his dealer) by scouring the burned-out West Side of Baltimore for bits and pieces of viable metal, piling it all into a stolen shopping cart and taking it down to the scrap yard for dough. At first I saw him as a sort of court jester, the humanistic unintentional comedian distracting us from a sea of blood and misery. Now, though, in light of the economy I see him as more a professional role model (minus the smack, of course).
All of which is to say, who couldn’t use a bargain right about now?

(Whew, I knew there was a point here somewhere!)

Over at the Crystal Ballroom’s Bargain Hunting 101 Sale, more than 40 local designers and boutiques will give shoppers the opportunity to save up to seventy-percent on handmade clothing, jewelry, art, and more. Best of all it’s free…and with a noon start-up time you can still make it home in time to watch the Steelers reign holy hell down on the Cardinals. [Crystal Ballroom/Noon/Free]

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