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People, Places and Things by Gwen DeRu

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Kountry Wayne

TODAY

LIVE BAND KARAOKE JAM SESSIONS, 7 – 11 p.m. at the Perfect Note.

OLIVIA’S HAPPY HOUR, every Thursday at Olivia’s Bar and Lounge with $.50 wings and drink specials, 4 p.m. For more call (205) 326-2881.

JOSÉ CARR WITH JAZZ ON FIRST, 7-10 p.m. at Jazzy’s on First Avenue North.

LIVE AT STEEL, 8 p.m. with SHARRON performing and DJ DUBB in the Mix at Steel on First at 23rd Street, downtown Birmingham. Get your live music and dance on every Thursday night.

COMEDIAN J BLISS at the StarDome, 7 p.m.

SHAQUILLE DE’ANDRE, IVPROFEN, 2K, BEN & JAS, and K.E., 9 p.m. at The Nick.

 

FRIDAY

WORLD CUP USA VS SWITZERLAND at the BJCC Legacy Arena, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

DJ CED AT THE TIDE AND TIGER on Graymont Avenue.

JAZZ CAT BALL, 6 p.m. until midnight at the Sheraton Hotel with music by the PARTY CRASHERS.

FRIDAY UNWIND, every Friday, 7 p.m. at Jazzi’s on 3rd.

COMEDIAN KING KOUNTRY WAYNE at the StarDome Comedy Club.

FANCY FRIDAYS, 5 p.m. featuring JILLIAN GRAY with YARBROUGH & COMPANY every Friday at Legends on 18th Street North, Downtown. Birmingham. This is an after-work Experience hosted by Keely and Tiger and catered by Chef Jones. Call (205) 212-4406 for more.

PLUM BAR on 17th Street, Downtown.

ASPHALT CROWN, THE MAMMOTHS and THOMPSON SPRINGS, 9 p.m. at the Nick.

JAZZ GUITARIST CLINTON BABERS, 8 – 11 p.m., at the Perfect Note.

 

SATURDAY

THE CATS – LOGAN THE ENTERTAINER and ALVIN GARRETT at WorkPlay Theater, for A Party-A Show-An Experience. DJ Chocolate will set the mood in the WorkPlay Bar at 7 p.m. until the concert begins in the theater at 9 p.m. The party continues in the bar when the band concludes. The live show will kick off with Birmingham’s own Darling of Soul, SHERRI BROWN.

BLACKBERRY SMOKE at the Iron City.

DWIGHT HOUSTON & ON PURPOSE, 8 – 11 p.m. at the Perfect Note.

RAILROAD PARK is where the fun is Saturday.

DJ CED AT THE TIDE AND TIGER on Graymont.

SOULFUL SATURDAY at Steel 1st and 23rd Club.

MARADEEN, C.J. BOYD, and JOELL REGAL, p.m. at The Nick.

COMEDIAN KING KOUNTRY WAYNE at the StarDome Comedy Club.

SATURDAY NIGHT GET DOWN at Saturn.

 

SUNDAY

STILLMAN COLLEGE CONCERT CHOIR, 2 p.m. at the Westminster Presbyterian Church, 20 Sixth Avenue S.W., Birmingham, AL.

SUPER BOWL SUNDAY….all over the country. Who do you think will win?

VOTARIES and MILK JUG, 9 p.m. at The Nick.

 

MONDAY

BIRMINGHAM BANDSTAND, 9 p.m. at The Nick.

CARD PLAYERS SPOT at the TIDE AND TIGER, 6 – 12 p.m.

 

TUESDAY

TIDE AND TIGER HOT TUESDAY, 3 p.m. until … on Graymont across from Legion Field with $.50 wings and drink specials until 9 p.m. For more call (205) 503-3880.

OLIVIA’S HAPPY HOUR, 4 p.m., every Tuesday, at Olivia’s Bar and Lounge with $.50 wings and drink specials. For more call (205) 326-2881.

COMEDIAN PHILLY PLOWDEN, 7:30 p.m. at the StarDome Comedy Club.

PLUM BAR on 17th Street, Downtown.

JOSÉ CARR at the Boss Lounge, 8:30 – 11 p.m.

HEXXUS, ALTER, EYELET and ZENOSYNE at The Nick.

 

WEDNESDAY

WINE AND JAZZ at the Perfect Note.

CHASE D’ARNAUD and MATT BENNETT, 9 p.m. at the Nick

COMEDIAN PHILLY PLOWDEN, 7:30 p.m. at the StarDome Comedy Club.

OPEN MIC NIGHT at the Oak Hill Bar & Grill.

 

NEXT THURSDAY

THE BUMBS, ANDREW CARTER and BEAR 13 at The Nick.

 

FOR MUSIC LOVERS AND SPOKEN WORD

THE AQUARIAN EXPERIENCE – Another musical experience with Birmingham’s finest band, Just A Few Cats with a joint birthday celebration for their two main men, LOGAN THE ENTERTAINER and ALVIN GARRETT. Join The Cats at WorkPlay Theater Saturday, for A Party-A Show-An Experience. DJ Chocolate will set the mood in the WorkPlay Bar at 7 p.m. until the concert begins in the theater at 9 p.m. The party continues in the bar when the band concludes. The live show will kick off with Birmingham’s own Darling of Soul, SHERRI BROWN, and continue with The Cats. For more, www.workplay.com or call 205-879-4773.

BO BERRY QUARTET, 7 p.m. to midnight every Friday at Jazzi’s on 3rd.

JAZZ GUTARIST CLINTON BABERS, 8-11 p.m., Friday, at the Perfect Note. DWIGHT HOUSTON & ON PURPOSE, 8 p.m. at the Perfect Note, Saturday.

BLACKBERRY SMOKE performs at Iron City on Saturday and is currently on tour promoting their recently released new album Like an Arrow, which features Greg Allman on the closing track and debuted No. 1 on both Billboard’s Country and Americana charts, making it their second consecutive album to debut at No. 1 without country radio airplay.

JAZZ JAM SESSIONS, every Fourth Sunday, 6 p.m. at the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame (Carver Theatre), except for Christmas.

SPOKEN WORD OPEN MIC NIGHT, every Third Sunday, 7 p.m. at the Carver Theatre.

STILLMAN COLLEGE CONCERT CHOIR, 2 p.m. on February 5, Sunday, at the Westminster Presbyterian Church. FREE. Donations for scholarships are welcomed. For more, call (205) 322-0161. This will be an afternoon of electrifying and inspirational music.

STUDENT JAZZ BAND FESTIVAL, April 20-22 at the Jazz Hall of Fame, Carver Theatre. New Student Roll Call for 2017 Saturday Jazz classes for new students coming soon.

 

BLACK HISTORY MONTH…

The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute is hosting several events during the month of February.

FEBRUARY: BLACK HISTORY MONTH – Theme: Crisis in Black Education

February 2-5 – “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill” produced by Red Mountain Theatre Company (RMTC) Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill tells jazz legend Billie Holiday’s troubled life story through the songs that made her famous, including “God Bless the Child,” “What a Little Moonlight Can Do,” Strange Fruit” and “Taint Nobody’s Biz-ness.” Set in Philadelphia in 1959, Holiday’s performance at Emerson’s Bar & Grill was one of her last, and Lady Day is not just a memorable tribute to the singer, but also a moving portrait of her struggles with addiction, racism, and loss. Tickets available at http://redmountaintheatre.org

February 8, 6 p.m. – Thom Gossom, Jr.: Reading and Book Signing. Gossom is an actor, writer, and communications professional. “A Slice of Life,” is the first of a three-part collection of “life stories” woven around themes of ordinary people caught up in extraordinary circumstances. Community Meeting Room.

February 16: 6 p.m. – Black History Month Program: A Town Hall meeting about the state of Black Education in Birmingham City Schools. Community Meeting Room.

February 17-19 – “The Green Book” produced by Red Mountain Theatre Company. A play based on the Negro Motorist Green Book, “The Green Book” gives audiences a look back to the era of segregation and the network of people who provided a safe harbor for travelers. BCRI and the Birmingham Holocaust Education Center are partners with RMTC. Tickets available at http://redmountaintheatre.org.

February 23, 6 p.m. – Annual Black History Month Art Contest Winners. Sponsored by McDonalds, 95.7 Jamz and BCRI. Community Meeting Room.

 

FOR HELPING YOUTH

UNCF MAYOR’S MASKED BALL – The 2017 UNCF Mayor’s Masked Ball wil be held February 25, at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex. This annual event, hosted by Mayor William A. Bell, Sr. will focus on providing scholarship funds for area students and operating support to UNCF-member institutions. UNCF President and CEO Dr. Michael L. Lomax will deliver remarks. Jasmine Sanders, co-host of “The D.L. Hughley Show,” will serve as emcee at the event that will feature elegant dining, testimonials by scholarship recipients and entertainment provided by the electrifying S.O.S. Band. This year’s honorees include 2016 UNCF Birmingham Co-chairs, Drs. Robert and Jarralynne Agee, Dr. Peter Millet, former president of Stillman College, and long-term UNCF partner, American Cast Iron Pipe Company. Al Denson, Birmingham-area UNCF campaign chair and president & CEO of Birmingham Airport Authority, serves as honorary chair and Brian Bucher, PNC Financial Services regional president of Alabama serves as corporate chair for this event. For more, call (205) 322-8623.

 

FOR MOTORSPORTS LOVERS

CHARLIE DANIELS BAND AT TALLADEGA SUPERSPEEDWAY –Talladega Superspeedway recently announced that legendary Southern rocker – Charlie Daniels – and The Charlie Daniels Band will perform as the headliner for the traditional Saturday Night Infield Concert, May 6, as part of the much-anticipated motorsports triple-header weekend (May 5-7), featuring the GEICO 500. The country rock legend and longtime NASCAR fan has been a household name since the 1970s. He is known for hits like “The Devil Went Down to Georgia,” “Long Haired Country Boy,” and “Uneasy Rider,” but being a devoted fan of racing he even recorded a song about Talladega Superspeedway’s all-time winner and one of his favorite drivers, Dale Earnhardt Sr. The song is titled “The Intimidator,” which was inspired after Daniels and Earnhardt met for the first time at Talladega’s Alabama 500 on Oct. 15, 2000, the last victory of the iconic driver’s career.

The Charlie Daniels Band will take to the stage for the ‘Dega faithful inside NASCAR’s “Party Capital” just off of historic Talladega Blvd. merely hours after a day of monumental racing with the Sparks Energy 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series race. Admission to the Saturday Night Concert is free with the purchase of a race ticket to Sunday’s GEICO 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race. The Talladega weekend kicks off Friday, May 5 with a full slate of on-track activity which includes practice sessions for the Sparks Energy 300 and GEICO 500 plus practice, qualifying and the drop of the green flag of the General Tire 200 for the ARCA Racing Series Presented by Menards. The General Tire 200 is set for a 5p.m. (CDT) start. Friday night the track will host the “Big One on the Blvd” parade and fan competitions, featuring an array of NASCAR drivers and loads of hysterical fun. Saturday’s activities (May 6) feature NASCAR XFINITY and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series qualifying, along with the start of the Sparks Energy 300 at 12 p.m. (CDT). Later in the evening, the Saturday Night Infield Concert gets underway, featuring The Charlie Daniels Band. Sunday’s GEICO 500 (May 7) is set for a 1 p.m. (CDT) start. For ticket information for all three days of activities, log on to www.talladegasuperspeedway.com or call 1-877-Go2-DEGA.

TALLADEGA SUPERSPEEDWAY’S 12th ANNUAL AWF WILD GAME COOK-OFF – Talladega Superspeedway is hosting some of the best local backyard chefs in the state of Alabama in anticipation of the 12th annual Alabama Wildlife Federation Wild Game Cook-Off on Saturday, March 4. Cook teams will compete in three different divisions – Fish, Fowl and Game. First, second and third place awards will be presented in each division, as well as a “Best Overall Winner.” That team will be invited to the state finals held in Millbrook, Ala., this summer to compete for the title of AWF 2017 Wild Game Cook-Off State Champion. Local media celebrities will serve as the competition’s judges and will be announced in the near future. For more information about tickets, pre-order rides around the track, or to participate as a cook team call the Alabama Wildlife Federation at 1-800-822-9453 or visit their website at www.alabamawildlife.org.

 

FOR THE COMMUNITY LOVERS

FREE TAX PREPARATION – SAVEFIRST – The nonprofit’s SaveFirst initiative has started the efforts to provide free income tax preparation services to working families making up to $53,000/year with kids in the home or $20,000/year without kids in the home. Interested individuals should call 1-888-99-TAX-AL for a free appointment. The tax preparation service is aimed at assisting families eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC is the federal government’s largest and most successful antipoverty program for low-income, working families. Impact Alabama’s annual free tax preparation services for working families will be available at five locations in the Birmingham area – Bessemer, Roebuck, Smithfield, West End, and Woodlawn.

TAX SITE INFORMATION:

BIRMINGHAM – SMITHFIELD LOCATION

Birmingham Public Libraries, Smithfield Branch #1 – 8th Ave W, Birmingham, AL 35204

BIRMINGHAM – WEST END LOCATION

Birmingham Public Libraries, West End Branch 1348 Tuscaloosa Ave SW, Birmingham, AL 35211

BIRMINGHAM – WOODLAWN LOCATION

Birmingham Public Libraries, Woodlawn Branch 5709 1st Ave N, Birmingham, AL 35212

BIRMINGHAM – ROEBUCK LOCATION

Springville Road Library 1224 Old Springville Rd, Birmingham, AL 35215

BESSEMER LOCATION

Bessemer Public Library 400 19th St N, Bessemer, AL 35020

 

FOR BUSINESS LOVERS

BIZWOMEN MENTORING MONDAY – Meet your mentor, April 3, at Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort and Spa.

 

FOR ART LOVERS

THIRD SPACE OPENING PARTY – The Birmingham Museum of Art (BMA) will host the Opening party, Friday, with an evening of internationally-inspired Southern cuisine and spirits, live music, interactive programming and a preview of the largest exhibition of contemporary art from the Museum’s Collection. Entertainment is by DISAPPEARING ACT with a sound performance by artist MERILEE CHALISS and musician BLAKE WIMBERLY.

FREEDOM? – An exhibition FREEDOM?, is at the University of Alabama in the Paul Jones Gallery, through April 28.

SLOSS FURNACES: THEN AND NOW – Lawson State College is presenting an exhibition entitled SLOSS FURNACES: THEN AND NOW by Adjunct History Instructor Gregory Wilson. This exhibition is covering the history of Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark and the rise of the Birmingham Industrial District. The exhibition is weekdays, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. until February 28, at the ACATT Building, (Birmingham Campus). For more information, email: gwilson@lawsonstate.edu.

 

FOR OUTDOOR LOVERS

SATURDAY DAY HIKE, 10 a.m. – Southeastern Outings Day hike along the Locust Fork River from Swann Covered Bridge to Powell Falls. DETAILS: A moderate three-mile day hike and picnic along the lovely Locust Fork River in Blount County near Cleveland, Alabama. View and drive through the genuine and newly-restored wooden covered bridge, hike along the river from the bridge and have lunch right beside Powell Falls. This waterfall drops about eight feet and carries a substantial amount of water. View sheer cliffs rising over 60 feet right above the water. See a rushing river, covered bridge, high rock bluffs and a large waterfall—all along a one and a half mile stretch of river. Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age 7 and older welcome. Bring a friend or several if you wish. Depart 9 a.m. from the KMart Green Springs or 10 a.m. from the Cleveland Chevron. Info: Francis Rushton, (205)290-5557.

SUNDAY DAY HIKE, 1 p.m. – Southeastern Outings Day hike at the Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve. DETAILS: Join SEO for a moderately strenuous, 3.4 mile hike on the lovely, well-maintained trails in the 1000+-acre Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve, one of the largest in-city nature preserves in the country. Pass remnants of old limestone quarrying operations which took place on the mountain, and we’ll hike on the back (south-facing) side of the mountain on several trails on which Southeastern Outings has hiked only once previously. We may have splendid views from the overlook where you can see all the way to the Miller Steam Plant on the Locust Fork River on a clear day. There will be several beautiful scenic views overlooking the Birmingham skyline and views to the hills to the north with some elevation gain hiking from the Nature Center Complex of the park to the top of Ruffner Mountain.

Bring water with you. Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age 8 and up welcome. To see a few photos of what to expect on the trip, please go to this link: The hike will complete in time for you to watch the Super Bowl Game that evening. Depart 1 p.m. from the Ruffner Mountain Nature Center Pavilion. Info: David Shepherd, davidshep2@netscape.net or (205)240-4681. DIRECTIONS TO MEETING PLACE – Ruffner Mountain Nature Center—1214 81st Street South, Birmingham. Take I-59 from downtown to Exit #131, Oporto-Madrid Boulevard (which is also 77th Street). Turn right at end of ramp and go about nine blocks to 4th Avenue South. Turn left. Go four blocks to 81st Street South. Turn right and go to end of road which becomes Ruffner Mountain Nature Center’s driveway. Park in large parking area a little further up hill, to the right of the new nature center building itself and right next to the covered deck with picnic tables. Or from the Eastwood Mall area take Oporto-Madrid north to 4th Avenue South. Turn right. Then follow directions above.

 

FOR COMEDY LOVERS

AT THE STARDOME:

Kountry Wayne
Kountry Wayne

KING KOUNTRY WAYNE. Wayne Colley is a Superstar Comedian on the rise! However, if you asked him to describe himself, he would say he is just a humble guy from the small town of Millen, Georgia wishing to make sure he provides not only a stable life for his seven children, but also a lasting faith-based legacy. Not a flashy guy at all, King Kountry Wayne, as he is known online, resides and runs two successful businesses in South Georgia. He currently has a following on social media of over 2.5 MILLION raving fans who fully support his comedic ventures. However, this was not his intention from the start.

J Bliss
J Bliss

J BLISS, at the StarDome Comedy Club on Thursday… He first hit the comedy stage in Charlotte, N.C. in 2005. Since then he has been traveling up and down the east coast leaving them laughing. His performances have simply been described as “Hilarious” and he is a definite “Crowd Favorite”. Just recently J Bliss won the “Fan Favorite” award at the 2014 Comedy $10K Comedy Competition. Since his start he has opened for comedians like Jay Phillips, Tony Roberts, DeRay Davis, Corey Holcomb, Alex Thomas, Rodney Perry, George Willborn and Eddie Griffin.

Philly Plowden
Philly Plowden

PHILLY PLOWDEN… next week, Tuesday through Thursday… Seen on America’s Got Talent. Philadelphia is one of the most sound actors/comedians working today. His observations & revelations about the human condition, mixed with stories from his own life, take an audience on a 200 mph trip that could stop at any point along the journey. Philly puts it all on the line, because he always works in the moment. His ability to relate to people from different walks of life has made him a favorite in the cruise ship industry, comedy clubs, & corporate events.

LOVE DON’T PAY NO BILLS SHOW coming February 14th at Bennie Mac’s on 1st.

 

FOR HELPING YOUTH

TAKE OUT BULLYING – The Jefferson County Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. in conjunction with The Alabama School of Fine Arts present “Take Out Bullying.” The Alabama School of Fine Arts Theatre Arts Ensemble uses humor and personal experience to showcase skits which confront teen bullying and other social issues related to teens head on. The event will be hosted by Harmony Mendoza, Meteorologist at WVTM 13. The event is FREE and open to the public. Dates and locations: Corner Middle School – Feb 8 (subject to change), Huffman Middle School – Feb. 28, and Phillips Academy (K-6) – Feb. 28.

AT THE BCRI

Opening of “¡NUEVOlution! Latinos and the New South” through May 31. This one-of-a-kind project will explore the surprising ways that Latinos are shaping the South and the South is shaping Latinos. The heart of the project is a 3,500 sq. ft. bilingual exhibition which explores a topic that many historians consider to be the biggest story in southern history since the Civil Rights Movement. Woolfolk Gallery.

“!NUEVOlution! Latinos and the New South” Community Celebration Exhibition – As part of the Alabama Dance Festival and the opening of the exhibition “!NUEVOlution! Latinos and the New South,”CONTRA-TIEMPO will perform for a fun and interactive Latin dance party.

“Helen Keller Student Art Show” January 29 through February 26

The winning entries of art work in various media produced by children of all ages who are visually impaired, blind and deaf/blind in Alabama will be announced and displayed. Milestones Gallery.

COMING SOON

FEBRUARY 10 – BRIAN McKNIGHT, KELLY PRICE and CHANTE MOORE at the BJCC CONCERT HALL.

FEBRUARY 25 – UNCF MAYOR’S MASKED BALL.

MARCH 11 – NATURAL HAIR & HEALTH EXPO at the BJCC.

MARCH 24 – CHRIS ROCK at the BJCC.

Well, that’s it. Tell you more next time.

 

(People, Places and Things by Gwen DeRu is a weekly column. Send comments to my emails: thelewisgroup@birminghamtimes.com or gwenderu@yahoo.com.)