The serendipitous meeting of pedicab drivers Wes Davis (guitars, vocals) and Ben "Sparky" Sparks (bass, vocals) led to the formation of The Rollfast Ramblers, a western swing/classic country group based in Austin. Rounded out by Adam Nurre (drums, hollerin') Sean Bolivar (lap steel guitar, tenor ukulele, vocals), and Heather Rae Johnson (fiddle, vocals), the outfit aspires to sound "like the bands your grandpa used to get drunk to while working his best moves on the dance floor to get your grandma’s attention." The San Antonio Swing Dance Society welcomes the band to Sam's for Swing Nite, a weekly happening offering swing lessons to dancers of all skill levels (7-8pm). Live music kicks off around 8:30pm and DJ Lil' Bit spins throughout the breaks. $9-$10, 7pm Monday, Sam's Burger Joint, 330 E Grayson, (210) 223-2830, samsburgerjoint.com.
2. Texas Public Radio Cinema Tuesdays: Oscar Shorts
Rounding up 10 short films nominated in the 85th Academy Awards, TPR’s Oscar Shorts screening is ideal for cinephiles with short attention spans. Anyone who’s ever been rescued by a well-timed telephone will likely relate to Shawn Christensen’s Curfew. Starring the writer/director opposite 12-year-old Fatima Ptacek (voice of Dora the Explorer), the Oscar winner has been described as “a condensed and whimsical piece of poetry and pain.” Walt Disney Animation Studios’ first Oscar-winning short since 1969, Paperman, employs gusts of wind and a fleet of paper airplanes to unite a couple who first meet by chance on a subway platform. A surreal recipe for guacamole, dreams of winning big in the national sport of Afghanistan, and a visit to the Ayn Rand School for Tots stand out as memorable highlights in a truly adventurous program. $10-$12, 7:30pm Tuesday, Santikos Bijou, 4522 Fredericksburg, (210) 734-4552, tpr.org.
3. Artist Conversation: Soody Sharifi
In conjunction with the traveling exhibition "The Jameel Prize: Art Inspired by Islamic Tradition," curator David S. Rubin interviews Houston-based artist and Jameel Prize finalist Soody Sharifi in SAMA's auditorium. By meticulously inserting contemporary details into digital collages (such as Fashion Week, above), Sharifi challenges Islamic stereotypes while exploring "the accommodation of modernity within a traditional society." Free, 6:30-7:30pm Tuesday; San Antonio Museum of Art, 200 W Jones, San Antonio, (210) 978-8100, samuseum.org.
Based loosely on a true story of a dog who helped save children from the diphtheria epidemic in the 1925 serum run to Nome (aka “Great Race of Mercy”), director Simon Wells’ 1995 animated adventure film Balto follows a wolf/dog hybrid who’s ridiculed by humans and canines alike but finds friends in a red husky named Jenna, a Russian goose named Boris, and a pair of polar bears named Muk and Luk. Free, pre-show entertainment at 7:30pm, film at 8:30pm Tuesday; HemisFair Park, 434 S Alamo, San Antonio, slabcinema.com.
5. Australia's Thunder From Down Under
A fixture on the Las Vegas Strip since it took over the showroom of the (once family-friendly) Excalibur Hotel and Casino in 2001, Australia’s Thunder from Down Under is routinely described as “Australia’s hottest export since Crocodile Dundee.” Lasting around 90 minutes, the all-Australian troupe’s “World Fantasy” extravaganzas feature 16 tanned slabs of beefcake who work crowds into a frenzy before stripping off uniforms — firefighters, soldiers, naval officers, and pirates are all on the menu — to reveal barely-there thunderwear. If the touring version landing at Cowboys follows the sizzling Sin City show, guests can expect plenty of crowd interaction,
including grannies getting pulled up on stage and brides-to-be competing in fake orgasm contests. $20-$25, 7:30pm Wednesday, Cowboys Dancehall, 3030 NE Loop 410, (210) 646-9378, cowboysdancehall.com.
Check out our full online calendar of upcoming events here: calendar.sacurrent.com.