Press Picks

Hum and Swervedriver See Rotation on page 87 and Critic's Choice on page 83, respectively. Fitzgerald's, 2706 White Oak, 862-7580.

march 14
The Orange Show Season Opener For reasons indiscernible -- at least to us -- Mayor Lee P. Brown was originally scheduled to snip the ribbon inaugurating the new season at this exotic architectural amalgamation celebrating the title hue/fruit and the whimsical Weltanschauung of its creator, late postman and odd duck Jeff McKissack. Though Hizzoner snapped to his senses at the 11th hour, canceling his appearance, the Show goes on. On the agenda: storytelling by Ramona King and instruction in the fine art of making trophies using media like "plastic spiders, doll heads and glow-in-the-dark fish." Noon to 5 p.m. 2401 Munger, 926-6368. $1; free for kids.

Ali Akbar Khan The Bangladesh-born, California-based world musician traces his musical heritage to a relative who played in the court of the 16th-century emperor Akbar, and Khan himself has performed for the pleasure of royal ears, holding down a position as court musician for the Maharaja of Jodhpur in his younger years. And though Khan, now 76, is best known as a purveyor of northern Indian classical music -- the master of the 25-stringed lute called the sarod is sometimes likened to a subcontinental Johann Sebastian Bach -- he's also had a far-reaching impact on American jazz improvisationalists and pop artists. Opener Zakir Hussain's no slouch, either; the percussionist (he plays the tabla) has collaborated with the likes of John McLaughlin, Philip Glass, Billy Cobham and Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart. 8 p.m. Moores Opera House, University of Houston entrance 16 (off Cullen Boulevard). Info: 648-0422. $20$50.

Houston St. Patrick's Festival The highlights of the fourth annual fest, sponsored by Project St. Brendan and the Ancient Order of Hibernians, includes the parade down Richmond at 2 this afternoon, concerts by Tommy Makem, the Makem Brothers and the Poor Clares, Andy Cooney's Irish Spectacular '98, an Irish ceili and a Scottish ceilidgh, the ever-popular snake races and step-dancing galore. 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. today; 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday and Monday; 5 a.m. to midnight Tuesday. All events except the parade are at Garden in the Heights, 3926 Feagan. Info: 880-1065. $8$18 (Star Tickets: 888-597-STAR).

Everest We pity the IMAX cinematographers who had to lug those unwieldy cameras to the frigid, oxygen-poor roof of the world. But the end result, in typically heroic IMAX style, is a view to die for -- not literally, though the footage gleaned for this work was shot in the same week in 1996 that eight climbers perished during a stormy summit attempt. Director/trekker David Brashears and IMAX co-developed a cold-resistant and relatively lightweight instrument especially for this film; accompanying Brashears up the South Col route pioneered by Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953 was American mountaineer Ed Viesturs, Jamling Tenzing Norgay (the son of Tenzing Norgay, who was with Hillary on that first successful ascent of Everest), Spanish daredeviless/physiotherapist Araceli Segarra, geophysicist Roger Bilham and Japanese climber Sumiyo Tsuzuki. The first public screening is at 10 a.m. today; Everest continues through September 25. The Houston Museum of Natural Science, 1 Hermann Circle Drive in Hermann Park, 639-IMAX. $6; $3.50 for kids and HMNS members.

The Klezmatics Self-billed as "the world's greatest party band" -- a distinction that Denton's Brave Combo, which has dipped its toes in the klezmer pool on occasion, would probably argue -- these natty New Yorkers play the heck out of the breakneck Jewish folk/wedding strain. And though it's not the first klezmer crossover act (that would be California's Klezmorim) or the best-known (arguably the Klezmer Conservatory Band) or even the best-named (the Mazeltones), the Klezmatics are, nevertheless, fun and funny. If you don't believe us, pick up one of their discs, like Jews with Horns or Rhythm and Jews. The band opens the second annual "Yiddish Lebt! Yiddish Lives!" festival (see Thrills for more info). 8 p.m. Congregation Beth Israel, 5600 North Braeswood. Info: 729-3200, extension 3231. $18; $8 for students and seniors.

march 15
The Delta 72 We thought this Washington, D.C., band was pretty great before we cranked its latest, The Soul of a New Machine; now we think the deconstructionist R&B crew might be visionary. Long lumped with the punks, the Delta is really only punk in its aggressive approach to garage rock, which includes a deft interplay between Sarah Stolfa's Farfisa organ and Gregg Foreman's harmonica. The band has, in fact, stumbled on the place where punk and Stax collide, splicing 'em together with alt baling wire and pure gumption. (P.S. The new disc's closer is titled "We Hate the Blues" -- don't believe it.) The Linoleum Experiment and Ponyboy open. 8 p.m. Zelda's, 2706 White Oak (downstairs), 862-3838. $8.

march 17
St. Patrick's Day at the Duck How better to celebrate the annual day honoring the patron saint of Eire -- and, more secularly, the wearin' of the green -- than the traditionalist celebration at the comfy, woodsy pub named McGonigel's Mucky Duck? On tap: Guinness stout (but of course), rooftop bagpiping serenades by E.J. Jones, Irish-history and -dancing sessions and music by Clandestine, Gordian Knot and the Kehoe Ceili Band. Noon. 2425 Norfolk, 528-5999. Free 'til 5 p.m.; $8 after.

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