This Week's Day-by-Day Picks 

WED 22

Julio Bravo y Su Orquesta Salsabor play salsa the way it should be played --urgently, with lots of feeling, fervent vocals, punchy horns, and a lingering, syncopated backbeat made for dancing. The band recently celebrated its tenth anniversary (go to to order their anniversary album), and it shows in the musicians' communication -- they make the flowing grooves seem so effortless, so ethereal, and yet so earthy at the same time. They'll be the main event at the Shattuck Down Low's weekly salsa night tonight, and if you get there early enough (8 p.m.), you can brush up on your steps with a quick lesson. Tickets cost $5 for students, $10 for everybody else. For more info, visit -- Eric K. Arnold

THU 23

Calling all lesbians! Find yourself rereading Rita Mae Brown books and/or staring at the ceiling during, ah, crucial moments? Do you wish for a more spiritual experience in your lovemaking sessions? If so, rejoice, because sexual shaman Joi Wolfwomyn comes to Change Makers tonight for "Slip of the Tongue: Oral Sex Magick for Queer Womyn." You can learn how to turn the are-you-done-yet? blahs into an ecstatic tantric session of devotional bliss, and all you need to bring with you is a mango and your lips. There's a sliding scale of $5-$20, and you'll need to RSVP at 510-652-6152 to let them know you're coming. --Eric K. Arnold

FRI 24

Dax Pierson is everybody's pal. Seriously. A keyboard player for the bands Subtle (an Anticon offshoot) and 13 and God, he was also known as the friendly bearded black dude behind the counter at Berkeley's Amoeba Music, where he worked as a buyer. Until one fateful February morn, when a nasty patch of black ice in Iowa caused the tour van containing Dax and the Anticon dudes to skid and overturn. In ten seconds, his life was forever changed. Upon impact, he suffered a broken neck and was paralyzed from the waist down. The crash was horrific, but the outpouring of love and support from the musician community worldwide since the incident has been a true feel-good story. A series of benefit shows from Oakland to London have helped to defray some of the health-care costs for Dax' recovery, but there's still a long way to go -- approximately $80,000 in total needs to be raised to pay for treatment and specialized medical equipment. Reports are that he is up and smiling again and doing better (visit for more info or to make a donation), but in the meantime, you can help contribute to the recovery effort by attending tonight's show at the LoBot Gallery. Musical entertainment will be provided by Soft Pink Truth,, Moe!kestra, and French Radio, and the Barely Human Dance Theatre will show off its avant-garde booty-shakin' moves. Anticon's Odd Nosdam may even DJ between sets. The show is at 9 p.m., and all proceeds go directly to the Dax Pierson Rehabilitation Fund. Maybe the Beatles were right: Sometimes you can get by with a little help from your friends. -- Eric K. Arnold

SAT 25

When more than three hundred motorcycles take off from Bob Dron Harley Davidson dealership at 10 a.m. today, they'll be parading -- not street-racing -- to Livermore in the B.I.G. Run, commemorating an historic race first run in 1911. The 2005 re-creation of the race will pass through Oakland, Hayward, and out Altamont Pass to Livermore's Duarte Highway Garage. The $25 entry fee entitles riders to an Eagle Head pin, lunch, and other goodies; sign-ins begin at 9 a.m. at Dron's, 200 Hegenberger Rd., Oakland. Info: 510-635-0100 or -- Kelly Vance

SUN 26

If you're going to drink on a Sunday night, you might as well have a good excuse for it. Just tell the wife, the husband, or your boss that you wanted to check out the weekly ceili (traditional Irish session) at the beloved Berkeley landmark, the Starry Plough. This ain't no newfangled neo-folk, unplugged emo, or Americana, just a rousing evening of folkloric tales from the Emerald Isle, sung by Shay Black and friends, that go down good with a pint o' Guinness and a bite of corned beef. 8 p.m. until, oh, around 11. For more info: -- Eric K. Arnold

MON 27

Oakland watercolor artist Rita Sklar likes to work in mixed media. In her "Vanishing Species" series, she often incorporates maps into her studies of such endangered animals as the African elephant, roseate spoonbill, and Galapagos mockingbird. An exhibition of Sklar's recent mixed-media paintings, Vanishing Species and More, is now up and running at the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) offices on the third floor of Joseph P. Bort MetroCenter in downtown Oakland (101 8th St. at the Lake Merritt BART station), and it's open weekdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There's a reception with the artist on July 13 (4-6 p.m.), as well. For more artist info, visit -- Kelly Vance

TUE 28

Guitarist Danny Caron has been around. A veteran of the Austin music scene, he has rocked zydeco with Clifton Chenier and chugged the blues with John Lee Hooker. The musical director for the legendary blues crooner Charles Brown for twelve years, Caron has played with everyone from Van Morrison to Ruth Brown to Donald Fagen. He now lives in the Bay Area and teaches at the Jazzschool in Berkeley when he isn't leading his trio, Good Hands, in their explorations of jazzy R&B. Just so you know what you're walking into when you hear the Danny Caron Band for free today (noon to 1:30) at Todos Santos Plaza in downtown Concord, part of the city's seventeenth annual Music at Noon series. For more info: And don't forget to check out -- Kelly Vance


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