Thu, Oct 17
Befitting its complex flavor profile, mole boasts a complicated history, with the Mexican states of Puebla, Oaxaca and Tlaxcala all claiming to be its birthplace. Variations of the mole legend date the sauce to the 16th century, when a visit by the Archbishop of Puebla may have inspired the improvising nuns of the Convent of Santa Rosa to kill and cook a turkey and slather it in a sauce made from everything they could scare up—chiles, spices, day-old bread, nuts, chocolate and 20-plus other ingredients. Other versions credit the original recipe to Fray Pascual (and a fateful gust of wind that blew spices into cazuelas cooking turkeys on the fire) and even the Aztec king Moctezuma (who allegedly served mole to Cortez). As part of its mission to “support and strengthen Chicano/Latino culture and identity,” Centro Cultural Aztlan rounds up restaurants and individuals to compete for bragging rights at its annual Mole Throwdown. In addition to samples from San Anto’s finest mole masters, the fundraiser features a silent auction of items donated by Aztlan’s long-time contributing artists plus “thirst quenching cerveza and live entertainment.” $20, 6-10pm Thursday, Centro Cultural Aztlan, 1800 Fredericksburg, (210) 432-1896, centroculturalaztlan.50megs.com.
2. Fires of Greenwood: The Tulsa Massacre of 1921
Fri, Oct 18
Frederick Williams is an Adjunct Professor of Political Science at San Antonio College, the Executive Editor of Prosperity Publications and a former opinion columnist for the San Antonio Express-News. In conjunction with the launch of his new novel Fires of Greenwood: The Tulsa Massacre of 1921 (chronicling "the events that led to one of the most horrendous slaughters of American citizens in U.S. history"), local literary arts center Gemini Ink hosts a reading and signing with Williams along with a discussion about "race, violence and hope for our country in these times that seem to resemble 1921 with each new day." Free, 6:30-8:30pm Friday, Gemini Ink, 513 S Presa, (210) 734-9673, geminiink.org.
3. “Weird Al” Yankovic: The Alpocalypse Tour
Fri, Oct 18
Eat it. You know, as in clean your plate, ’cause “don’t you know that other kids are starving in Japan?” Of all the jokers who ever thought to drop the “B” from Michael Jackson’s 1983 single, “Weird Al” Yankovic might be the only one who made it about food. From “My Bologna”—recorded in a bathroom at California Polytechnic in 1979—to 2006’s G-rated R. Kelly spoof “Trapped in the Drive-Thru,” Yankovic’s obsession with the stuff we stuff our faces with has been well documented (play “Nature Trail to Hell” backwards to hear the hidden message “Satan eats Cheez Whiz”), but turning songs about sex and violence into odes to junk food is only one of his methods for pulling off his most impressive feat. Yankovic, at his most accessible, makes pop music, a product already calculated for the lowest common denominator. Some of his 150-and-counting parodies of chart-toppers have topped the charts themselves in his 30-plus year career, but on his albums, they sit alongside even stranger stuff: originals about slasher movies starring cub scout troops and Christmas carols for a nuclear winter, polka medleys of rock and rap songs, on-the-money style parodies of artists such as Frank Zappa and Smile-era Brian Wilson—music that inspires and rewards the sort of obsessive listening Yankovic clearly does himself. His live show, featuring a mix of all of these things along with elaborate costume changes, film clips and a Wonder Hamster, comes to the Majestic this weekend, the second-to-last stop on his Alpocalypse tour, which began in 2011. $39.30-$61.15, 8pm Friday, The Majestic Theatre, 224 E Houston, (210) 226-3333, majesticempire.com.
4. The Flower Jesus Quintet
Fri, Oct 18
It’s hard to figure out what’s inside the heads of the Flower Jesus Quintet’s members. For starters, they’ve decided to release a limited cassette edition of “Massive Cave,” the first single off their upcoming EP. But the cassette has long and short versions, all recorded by three different lineups of the band at different times. It also sounds like, well, a cassette, recorded inside a shoebox. Their still-evolving artistic statement belongs to the increasing number of psychedelic regional bands that offer an alternative to the usual indie rock and pop fare. They’re trippy but dense, groovy but dark, yet staunch defenders of flower power. I wasn’t too impressed with “Massive Cave,” I must confess, but they have something mysterious that makes the prospect of a live show appealing. With Jeremiah Birdbones, New Hampshire and Moon Walks. $3, 9pm Friday, Limelight, 2718 N St. Mary’s, thelimelightsa.com.
5. Doña Rosita’s Jalapeño Kitchen
Fri, Oct 18 - Sun, Oct 20
A pioneer of issue-driven bilingual theater, Chicana performer Ruby Nelda Perez is no stranger to the local scene. Perez joined Los Actores de San Antonio in 1984, performed in the Guadalupe’s production of Real Women Have Curves in 1990 and premiered her Rosita’s Day of the Dead at Jump-Start in 1999. Perez returns to the Alamo City with Doña Rosita’s Jalapeño Kitchen—a one-woman show set in Salsipuedes, an old neighborhood about to be razed and developed as a “tourist shopping mall.” According to Perez: “The theme of my Doña Rosita completely shadows with what is currently happening to Jump-Start. I am sure the community will step up in supporting this innovating company in finding a new home.” $10-$15, 8pm Fri-Sat, 3pm Sun, The Sterling Houston Theater at Jump-Start, 1420 S Alamo, (210) 227-5867, jump-start.org.
6. Artist Talk: Alice Leora Briggs and Rigoberto A. Gonzalez
Sat, Oct 19
A witness to drug wars, asylums, rehab centers, cartel death houses and the Juarez morgue, Lubbock-based Alice Leora Briggs translates disturbing realities into woodcuts and sgraffito drawings (above). Rigoberto A. Gonzalez’ large-scale paintings combine a dramatic, baroque painting style with the stories of violence told in corridos (Mexican folk ballads), including challenges affecting life on the border and the brutality associated with drug cartels and illegal immigration (below). In conjunction with the parallel solo exhibitions "La Linea" and "Baroque on the Border," the Southwest School of Art hosts a discussion and Q&A with Briggs and Gonzalez, moderated by Texas Public Radio's David Martin Davies. Free, 2-4pm Saturday, Russell Hill Rogers Lecture Hall, Southwest School of Art, 1201 Navarro, (210) 224-1848, swschool.org.
Check out our review of both exhibitions here.
7. 8th Annual San Antonio Beer Festival
Sat, Oct 19
Join us on Saturday at Hemisfair Park for one of the year’s most anticipated beer-drinking experiences. In addition to 200-plus craft and premium beers to sample (check out the list here), the 21 and up event features wine tastings, lawn games, great grub and music by DJ Ras G, The Hares, Dub Gideon and Villela. $30 in advance from SanAntonioBeerFestival.com and H-E-B stores, $40 at the gate (a portion of proceeds benefits the San Antonio Food Bank), 1-6pm Saturday, Hemisfair Park, 200 S Alamo, (210) 227-0044.
8. 'Dried-Up: New work by Sarah C. Frey'
Sat, Oct 19
Formerly known as Transit, Agora is a multi-purpose venue that’s hosted a handful of unique events including the Proxy Theatre Company’s production of Macbeth and the Art Institute exhibition “The Moment It Breaks.” The artist-run space reemerges this week with “Dried-Up: New work by Sarah C. Frey.” An academic advisor at Texas State University, Frey found inspiration for her latest body of work—which includes paintings, drawings and serigraphs—while intentionally generating dried-up markers for a future project. According to the artist, “While the work began as a set of highly disciplined mark-making exercises, an act of error forced those structures to give way.” Rooted in “personal compositional motifs,” the series nods to textile design, with “brightly intertwined lines and blobs” woven into vivid arrangements. Free, 7-10pm Saturday, Agora Art Space, 1907 S St. Mary’s.
9. U.S. Women's National Team vs. Australia
Sun, Oct 20
The No. 1 ranked U.S. Women’s National Team will host eighth-ranked Australia in a friendly international match on October 20. This marks the U.S. team’s first visit to the Alamo city since a 1996 pre-Olympic warm-up match against Sweden. The Alamodome game will be only the 10th indoor match in the team’s history, which has a 9-0-0 record in games played indoors and an 11-0-0 all-time record in Texas. The U.S. has also dominated Australia 21-0-2. Coming off the 2012 Olympics with a gold medal victory and with the FIFA Women’s World Cup a little less than two years away, the U.S. team, with stars like goalie Hope Solo (above), is playing some of the best soccer out there. Expect the team to light up the scoreboard after obliterating Mexico 7-0 in their last game on September 3. Come out to cheer on the team and Abby Wambach as she continues her scoring rampage and increases her all-time international goals record, which currently stands at 161. $22-$250, 12:30pm Sunday, Alamodome, 100 Montana, (210) 207-3663, ussoccer.com.
10. Avenged Sevenfold
Sun, Oct 20
Avenged Sevenfold is guilty of two acts of heresy: In spite of the band’s name and multiple Biblical references (songs like “Shepherd of Fire,” “Requiem,” “Heretic” and countless ones from previous recordings), they’re not a Christian band, and singer M. Shadows wants to make it perfectly clear. “Absolutely not,” he told the Current on the phone from Chicago. “I don’t believe in those things. [Laughs] I try not to get into that because a lot of our fans are Christians and a lot aren’t. I have my own beliefs, but I don’t believe in any kind of religion that we have nowadays. But we’re definitely not a Christian band.” The other act of heresy: they dare to evolve. In the often narrow-minded world of metal, they left their metalcore (and screaming) origins to gradually become a band that didn’t mind experimenting with symphonic arrangements and hard rock, not caring about the inevitable consequences. “When we started as a very young band in the Orange County [Calif.] hardcore scene, as soon as we started separating ourselves from that, all those kids wouldn’t come to our shows and they hated us because we sang and were a little bit more melodic,” Shadows said. “We were a cool band to watch at Warped Tour, but if you ask those kids now they’ll say, ‘No, Avenged Sevenfold is not a Warped band, they suck.’ ‘They’re too big, corporate.’ The bigger you get, you get that. So, we just write the music we want to write, we go on tour, do the production we want to do, and we basically live in our own little bubble. We really don’t care what anyone says.” Especially when the gamble pays off: their last two albums (2010’s Nightmare and September’s Hail to the King) both debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, with the latter selling 159,000 copies in the first week. It was the culmination of a band that considered dissolving after the death of drummer The Rev (James Owen Sullivan) in 2009 due to an overdose combination of alcohol and prescription pills. The death occurred two weeks before their anticipated Nightmare sessions. After years of self-production, they finally found the sixth man they had been looking for in Mike Elizondo, who seemed to know everything about the band. Their relationship went beyond the making of both hit albums. “When Jimmy died, Mike was with us all the time and we formed a friendship that is very valuable to this band,” said Shadows. “We did two records and hopefully we’ll continue.” Gone forever are the early screaming vocals, and Shadows is unapologetic about it. “We don’t listen to bands that scream,” he said. “I did when I was in high school and I kind of grew out of it. Maybe I’ll listen to one or two. I’d rather listen to the Iron Maidens and Metallicas of the world than the death metal bands. For me, it doesn’t make sense.” The singer does listen to AC/DC and NOFX, but for the most part is bored of bands who release the same album over and over again. That’s why he’s a firm believer in the Steve Jobs approach: to give people what they need before they even know they wanted it. ... And I do use a Mac, yeah!” The band returns to San Antonio, a place they love to play, with a fan request. “Playing in SA is exciting because it’s one of the capitals of metal,” said Shadows. “But I’m also excited about Deftones and I hope people come in early, because [Sweden’s] Ghost [B.C.] is an amazing band. We all have a very nice production and people are going to get blown away by it.” $51.63-$65.77, 7pm Sunday, AT&T Center, One AT&T Center, (800) 745-3000, attcenter.com.
Check out Enrique Lopetegui's full Q&A with Avenged Sevenfold's M. Shadows here.