Horn In Jazz artist Shirley Horn is joined by drummer Steve Novosel and bassist Steve Williams for a five-day East Bay run. Horn was a child prodigy pianist whose mother used to bribe her to go outside and play with the other kids; her first album, Embers and Ashes (1960), got her noticed by jazz aficionados and players, among them Miles Davis, who invited her to perform with him shortly after. In addition to her piano prowess, Horn is possessed of a finely tuned set of vocal chords. Her appearance marks the release of her latest Verve recording, The Main Ingredient. The Shirley Horn Trio plays at 8 p.m. (also Thursday and Sunday at 8 p.m., Friday and Saturday at 8 and 10 p.m.) at Yoshi's, 6030 Claremont, Oakland. $18-22; call (510) 652-9200.
Eat for Charity "Taste of the Nation" is a kind of condensed Bay Area food tour, with select comestibles and wines from scores of restaurants laid out in one building. Proceeds benefit local service agencies -- California Food Policy Advocates, the San Francisco Food Bank, and others -- that fight hunger. "Taste of the Nation" begins with a silent auction at 6 p.m. and winds down with a coffee and dessert tasting at the Fairmont Hotel, California & Mason, S.F. Admission is $85; call 495-2331.
Everyone Knows It's Wendy A specialist in what's known in the comedy biz as "the one-liner with the subliminal afterthought," comedian Wendy Liebman has forged a career from delayed punch lines. Sample: "My last boyfriend and I were incompatible. Like, I'm a night person, and he ... didn't like me." Liebman, a two-time nominee of the American Comedy Award for best female stand-up and a veteran of Comic Relief, provides locals another shot at getting their mugs on TV as she tapes an HBO special at 7:30 and 10 p.m. at the Fillmore, 450 Geary, S.F. Admission is $9; call (510) 762-2277.
Text Meets Terpsichore The Stephen Pelton Dance Company and collaborative theater troupe Word for Word get classical and contemporary fiction up and running with "Short Stories: Telling Tales With Words, Dance, and Music." The program skewers arts patronage during the Harlem Renaissance in The Blues I'm Playing; scrutinizes the toll work takes on personal relationships in Workaday Blues; adapts Virginia Woolf's essay The Death of a Moth to parallel the search for faith in the age of AIDS; and ponders the thoughts of a woman falling from a building with Dino Buzzati's The Falling Girl. "Short Stories" plays at 8 p.m. (also Friday at 8 p.m. and Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m.) at ODC Performance Gallery, 3153 17th St., S.F. Admission is $10-12.50; call 863-9834.
Sound Trakt Former Knitting Factory co-owner Bob Appel and his production company, Akimbo, mix it up Manhattan-style with "Abstrakt: A Night of Groove." Elias Merhige's film Begotten gets the party started, followed by new music on new instruments by Msbius Operandi, Afro-Cuban grooves from Bobby Matos' ensemble, and acid jazz from the Broun Fellinis. Jillian Mosely does her "Urban Chick Erotica" gig, while writer Jonathen Lethem teams up with T.J. Kirk guitarist John Schott for the noirish collection "Dark Jazz Stories." DJs Grey Boy, Dusk, Vinnie, and Bob-a-loup play discs spanning African to ambient in different theme rooms. "Abstrakt" starts at 7:30 p.m. at 1015 Folsom, S.F. Admission is $6-10; call 431-1200.
The Other Flying V Former Olympic gymnast Kurt Thomas, who pioneered the "flair" move, performs with members of local gymnastics clubs at the unveiling of Richard MacDonald's 3-ton, 24-foot bronze sculpture The Flair. Named for Thomas' innovation, the sculpture will be shown on a cross-country tour before being installed at the Georgia International Plaza outside the gymnastics pavilion of the Summer Games. The kickoff event is held at noon in Justin Herman Plaza, Steuart & Market, S.F. Admission is free; call 263-4590.
It's BAD The Bay Area Dance Series maintains its reputation as a stylistic and technical blender with the 1996 summer season, which features a flamenco gala, the ballet choreography showcase "Pas de Siecle," a hip-hop jam with Housin' Authority and Midnight Voices, the radical improv performance group CORE, and the experimental dance-theater company Shakiri/Rootworkers. AXIS, a dance company in which performers with and without disabilities are partnered to mind-bending effect, opens the season with Hidden Histories/Visible Differences, a choreographic confrontation dealing with body-image issues and the history and culture of disability. The show begins at 8 p.m. (also Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m.) in the Cowell Theater, Fort Mason Center, S.F. Admission is $14-16; call 392-4400.
Don't Call Them Sadcore Because American Music Club singer Mark Eitzel digs 'em and because comparisons between singer/guitarist Kevin Thomson and Lou Reed are hard to resist (check out "447" on their recent release Gentleman Jim), San Francisco's Timco gets lumped into the sadcore category. The trio, comprised of two former members of Nice Strong Arm, is tired of the tag; the music's moody, sure, and jagged on tracks like "Gone" ("When I'm gone, you'll find traces of me/ When I'm gone, you'll try to resurrect me/ When I'm gone, you'll wish you never met me"), but the spare melodies are cut with satisfying sonic breakaways. Imperial Teen and Track Star open for Timco at 10 p.m. at the Bottom of the Hill, 1233 17th St., S.F. It's $6; call 621-4455.