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NOVEMBER 17 - WEDNESDAY
Songwriter Marc Cohn, the 1991 Grammy winner for "Best New Artist," will appear at Neighborhood Theatre tonight at 8pm along with support act Vienna Teng. Best known for his piano-driven hit "Walking in Memphis," Cohn has countered the famed Grammy kiss of death by doing session work and smaller-venue solo tours since his Nirvana-besting breakout. Seat Guaranteed Tickets are $30, and Gold Circle tickets with an artist meet and greet after the show are $40. Buy over the phone 704-358-9298 or log on to www.neighborhoodtheatre.com for more info. (Davis)

Usually, it's late spring when Carolinians get to see the dynamic St. Lawrence String Quartet -- and that's at the Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston. But this year, the group is flanking the Charlotte area on successive evenings at two of the region's most attractive chamber music venues. Led by the charismatic Geoff Nuttall on first violin, the quartet appears tonight at Tyler-Tallman Hall at Davidson College and tomorrow night at the Batte Fine Arts Center on the Wingate University campus. Tickets at both locations are $15 ($10 for DC students and faculty) to hear a sampling of the Lawrentian repertoire, which ranges from Bach to Golijov on disk. Call 704-894-2135 for info on tonight's 8pm performance at Davidson, 704-233-8300 for tomorrow night's 7:30pm concert in Wingate. (Tannenbaum)

With a winning record of 6-2-1 at press time, the Charlotte Checkers glide onto the Cricket Arena ice tonight for a face off against the Texas Wildcatters. On Saturday (Scout Night/Canned Food Night -- bring a canned food item and receive a free ticket for a future game), the team is up against the Greensboro Grrrowl and they're back at Cricket on Tuesday vs. the Augusta Lynx. The puck starts flying tonight at 7pm. Tickets go from $9 to $20. You can get "em by calling Ticketmaster at 704-552-6500, through the Ticketmaster website (ticketmaster.com) or via www.gocheckers.com. (Vespa)

NOVEMBER 18 - THURSDAY
Progressive country is Texan Robert Earl Keen's claim to fame. But its Keen's knack for composing tales of drifters and lovers, kinfolk and lonesome folk that keep him more than a few paces ahead of the pack of like-minded troubadours. His steady stream of warm country and folk-rock longevity lies in the storytelling and his live delivery. The Greencards will open. At Neighborhood Theatre. Tickets are $25. For more details call 704-358-9298 or neighborhoodtheatre.com (Shukla)

Jason Hart, Primoz Brezec, and the surprisingly scrappy Charlotte Bobcats take on LeBron "King" James, the erstwhile "next Jordan," tonight at 7pm at the Charlotte Coliseum. Tickets are $10-$115, available at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 704-522-6500. (Davis)

Author John T. Edge, the director of the Southern Foodways Alliance at the University of Mississippi, visits the Levine Museum of the New South at 6pm tonight to talk about his new book, Fried Chicken: An American Story, which is part of an ongoing series of books by the writer on iconic American foods. After satisfying their intellectual curiosity, attendees are invited to chow down with plenty of fried bird and fixin's. Tickets for the event are $20 for members -- $25 for the general public -- and are available by calling 704-333-1887 (x224). (Davis)

Charlotte Symphony Orchestra has changed the name of their Mostly Mozart series to Neighborhood Concerts -- which makes sense when your next program is zero Mozart and all Schubert. With the help of a GPS tracking device, you'll also be able to track CSO's shifts in venue over the next three evenings as they bring highbrow to the "hood for the irresistible general admission price of $15, just $5 for students and children. Tonight, they're at Duke Family Performance Hall in Davidson; tomorrow, they turn up at the University City United Methodist Church, 3835 W W.T. Harris Blvd.; and Saturdayt, they're at First Baptist Church. All three concerts begin at 8pm. Call 704-972-2000. (Tannenbaum)

NOVEMBER 19 - FRIDAY
Bright Leaves, the latest documentary from Charlotte native Ross McElwee (Sherman's March), opens today in Charlotte for a regular run, but a special screening will be held at 7:30pm this evening at the Manor. McElwee will be in attendance, speaking after the screening and accepting The Light Factory's inaugural Power of Image Award. The cost for this special event is $50. Call 704-333-9755 to reserve tickets, and see this issue's Film section for a feature on McElwee. (Brunson)

As the first step toward reaching out to our Allies again, support the Alliance Franaise de Charlotte (AF) and Charlotte Sister Cities (CSC) programs by attending the 11th Annual Beaujolais Nouveau Wine Tasting Event. Your $25 ticket ($20 for AF and CSC member) gets you traditional French food, Beaujolais wine, French-style entertainment and the opportunity to win magnifique prizes. The soiree takes place from 5-8pm at Founders Hall. Note: you must be 21 years of age or older to attend (hey, you know the French). (Vespa)

The UNCC 49ers' regular season gets underway today with a doubleheader at Halton Arena on the UNCC campus. The women's team is up first at 5:30pm playing NC A&T. The men's team, ranked 28th in the preseason AP poll, hits the boards at 8pm against Long Beach State. Adult tickets to see both games range from $12 to $16. $5 will get you in to see just the earlier distaff game. For more info, call 704-687-4949 or visit http://charlotte49ers.college sports.com. (Vespa)

For a quarter of a century, Charlotte's The Spongetones have ably purveyed Beatles-y pop of an extremely high (read: internationally recognized) caliber. With eight full-length records under their collective belts, Rob Thorne, Steve Stoeckel, Jamie Hoover and Pat Walters are getting geared up to release their ninth album, the appropriately titled (and White Album-referencing) #9. Charlotte's biggest band for a number of years -- they had songs played on American Bandstand, and reviews in Rolling Stone -- the group's early history included fans so star-struck by the quartet that fans supposedly offered to buy vials of their sweat!. Twenty-five years later, the sweat ought to be there in abundance at Amos' SouthEnd, as the band is prepared to exhaust their back catalog tonight like no one since the late Tupac Shakur's estate. Contempories Cruis-o-matic, known in their day as an ultimate party band, open the show. Tickets for the 9pm show are $10. For more information, log onto www.spongetones.com or call the club at 704-377-6874. (Davis)

NOVEMBER 20 - SATURDAY
How The Mosquitos formed was such an intriguing story that once it was told on an NPR Weekend Edition segment in August 2003, that's all anybody focused on (see our story in this issue). Through a chance encounter in New York to Rio's sexiest beaches, the Mosquitos' story and their eponymous debut reflected the band's sunny beginnings. Still, the sense that this might be their 15 minutes in the limelight nagged like a sand-gnat. But then came the group's new record, Sunshine Barato ("Cheap Sunshine"), a musical quantum leap forward albeit still in line with the band's roots. Think Bebel Gilberto, think Belle & Sebastian, toss in a helping of Yo La Tengo and then add JuJu Stulbach's sexy Brazilian voice, Chris Root's guitar and oddball lyrics, and Jon Marshall Smith's keys and synths, and you've got an intoxicating mix with staying power. They'll be opening for the legendary Wailers of Jamaica, so this show's a winner top to bottom. Tickets are $20 for this 9pm show. For more information, go to www.visulite.com. (Schacht)

Synchronize your watches -- and get in on the frenetic fun. BareBones Theatre Group presents their cult favorite as Bride of 24 Hour Theatre Project blasts off at the SouthEnd Performing Arts Center at 8pm sharp. Countdown to the launch begins precisely 24 hours earlier when five local playwrights are given a theme upon which they are charged to write a 10-minute play. Twelve hours later, the playwrights return to 211 Rampart Street with their scripts to early morning directors' meetings and auditions. The plays are cast, rehearsed, and -- ready or not -- presented at the madcap payoff. Ten bucks at the door will get you a general admission seat. Get there early. All the roles and all the seats were filled for BareBones' last 24 Hour Project. (Tannenbaum)

NOVEMBER 21 - SUNDAY
Today's your last chance to catch the Southern Christmas Show's craft shopping, Enchanted Village, food, and tree displays -- Santa will be moving on after today as the winter wonderland melts away at 6pm. Tickets cost $7 in advance and $8 at the door, discounted for children under 12. For more information, go to www.SouthernChristmas Show.com or call 1-800-849-0248. (Callahan)

The Carolina Panthers, fresh off their come-from-behind victory against the 49ers on Sunday, take on the ageless Emmitt Smith, the NFL's all-time leading rusher, and the rest of the Arizona Cardinals today at 1pm at Bank of America stadium. Tickets for the epic tilt start at $29, and are available by logging on www.ticketmaster.com. (Davis)

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