Critic's Choice for the week of November 16-22, 2005 

Muckraker fashion, reconstituted funkmasters, and cosmic rebels with guitars.

PANTY-HURLING SEXPOT SPECTACLES

Clearly, Oakland's glamorous @Seventeenth club is doing its thang, bringing the hottest platinum-selling stars of KMEL's playlist -- rappers with slangy dope-game lyrics and muscle-bound soul crooners whose stunna glasses match the sheen on their groupies' nail polish -- to its small stage. Friday, the club reaches new heights of Hollywood spectacle by featuring the steamy R&B sexpot Ginuwine. What's not to love about an artist whose name sounds like a brand of top-shelf liquor, and whose lyrics recall the sexier parts of a Danielle Steel novel with the added bonus of cool ghetto grammatology? The show kicks off at 9 p.m. and costs $28; expect to see a lot of panties thrown onstage. At17th.com (Rachel Swan)

FEMME GUITAR-SLINGERS

Singer-songwriter Patty Larkin is also an amazing guitar player, with a style that taps into jazz, folk, blues and various global influences. Female pickers seldom get the respect accorded their male peers, a circumstance Larkin hopes to remedy with her La Guitara tour, a showcase for Larkin and three other female string-slingers: the percussive Kaki King, jazzy Mimi Fox, and Muriel Anderson, the first woman to win the National Fingerpicking Championship. Friday at SF's Great American Music Hall. $25-$27, 8 p.m. 415-478-2277 or GAMH.com (j. poet)

PASTORAL SOFTNESS

To conjure the Kingsbury Manx, take equal parts The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society and Yo La Tengo's Fakebook, mix well, and bake in the North Carolina sun. Yeah, with incantatory rounds aplenty, these guys are some kind of lush, soft and just warm enough for an early winter's eve. With the Standard and Oakland's own Heavenly States Tuesday at SF's Bottom of the Hill. $10. 9 p.m. BottomoftheHill.com (Rob Trucks)

MUCKRAKER FASHION

Some of the best and best-known muckrakers in the Bay Area -- among them A.C. Thompson and KPFA's Andrea Lewis -- are emeriti of Youth Outlook, a mag that combines political and lifestyle reportage with slangy music reviews and hip-hop-oriented free-verse poetry, all produced by and for a teenage audience. Come support YO! by attending Saturday's Young and tha Restless benefit fashion show at 2232 MLK, which features performances by the dishy East Bay reggae vocalist Luna Angel, reggaetón emcee Panama, and DJ Agana, plus threads by local designers Vanessa Espinoza, Swan Gray, and special guests. The event kicks off at 9 p.m., and costs $5 in advance or $7 at the door. 2232MLK.com (R.S.)

RECONSTITUTED FUNKMASTERS

Without the superfunky, swampy N'awlins R&B licks, grooves, and riffs of the Meters, there would have been less reason for crate-diggers to scour dusty basements in search of rare vinyl, less validity to the art form of sampling, and also a whole lot less for hip-hop producers from the Bomb Squad to P. Diddy to be influenced by. After a triumphant reunion at 2005's New Orleans Heritage Jazz Festival, the original quartet -- Art Neville, Leo Nocentelli, Zigaboo Modeliste, and George Porter Jr. -- have put aside their personal differences, reformed as a band, and hit the road just in time to spead some bayou fiyo into a post-Katrina national landscape. Expect to hear classics like "Cissy Strut," "Hey Pocky A-Way," "Jungle Man," and "Just Kissed My Baby" Friday and Saturday night at the Fillmore. $75, 9 p.m. each night. BGP.com (Eric K. Arnold)

LATIN FIESTAS

Last year's book The Voices of Latin Rock documented for the first time the story of 1970s Bay Area artists who fused psychedelic rock with Afro-Cuban rhythms. Bimbo's 365 Club threw a party to celebrate, and Thursday, the second annual Bimbo's fiesta will benefit Autism Awareness and the Arbor Day School. Featured artists include Malo, El Chicano, the Salvador Santana Band, and the Vernon Black All Stars featuring Booker T. Jones. $45-$74, 7 p.m. 415-285-7719 or Bimbos365Club.com (Jesse "Chuy" Varela)

VOCAL ADVENTUROUSNESS

Robert Geary's twenty-member chamber choir Volti -- four-time winner of the ASCAP/Chorus America Award for Adventurous Programming -- celebrates San Francisco's Winter of Love (during which more than four thousand same-sex couples tied the knot) with the world premiere of Alan Fletcher's No More to Hide: An American Wedding Cantata Sunday night. Using the poetry of Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman and graced by the artistry of soprano Christine Brandes, the chorus promises to glow in Berkeley's St. Mark's Episcopal Church. $8-$20, 4 p.m. 415-771-3352. VoltiSF.org (Jason Victor Serinus)

SOUL NOSTALGIA

Dust off that funky polyester leisure suit, pimp daddy tuxedo jacket, and cha-cha heels and head on over to Maxwell's Thursday night for a rare performance by the Vallejo-raised, Memphis-grown '70s soul septet Con Funk Shun. Best known for the dance-party hit "Ffun" and syrupy disco ballad "Love's Train," the group will surely conjure up sweet (possibly mortifying) memories of junior prom slow dances and late-night cruises down East 14th in your boyfriend's souped-up Coup de Ville. $30, 7 p.m. MaxwellsLounge.com (R.S.)

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