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The House of Tudor 

Wednesday, Oct 15 1997
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Hope you got plenty of sleep last night because it's going to be a busy week. First, a friendly warning: You may be tempted to go see Stiff Little Fingers this week because the band now touts former Jam bassist Bruce Foxton, and because SLF did release Inflammable Material, which could ostensibly be one of the finest punk albums ever produced, in 1979, and because Boston's infamous Gang Green are opening for them. However, I cannot, in good conscience, allow you to purchase a ticket without first explaining that SLF have a new album called Tinderbox. It is a horrifying piece of plastic heartbreak -- insipid pop, pedestrian arena-style guitar rock (circa 1979), and an irksome SLF-arranged rap by the also once-grand Grandmaster Flash. If last year's show is any indication, the band will shamelessly perform their new material. There, I've said it. The choice is yours at Slim's on Wednesday, Oct. 15, at 9 p.m. Tickets are $15.50-16; call 255-0333.

In 1967, Davie Allan was known as the "King of Fuzz Guitar," and his band, the Arrows, was the No. 1 instrumental group in America. This was the power of the cult film in the late '60s. Allan's trademark guitar sound -- one part Ventures, two parts Duane Eddy, a squirt of Elvis, a smidgen of Henry Mancini, and a whole lot of Link Wray -- garnished 24 movie soundtracks, including all the true rebel-biker classics like The Wild Angels, The Born Losers, and Devil's Angels. Any road hooligan worthy of his goggles owned a copy of the Arrows' Cycle-Delic Sounds. In 1995, Loud, Loose, and Savage proved that Allan was still all of those things; a whole new generation of roughneck admirers responded by raising the dust and admiring the fuzz. Allan & the Arrows make their only Bay Area appearance at the Chameleon on Thursday, Oct. 16, at 9 p.m. The Neanderdolls and DJ The Now Sound open. Tickets are $5; call 821-1891.

This weekend everyone can raise a glass to 330 Ritch Street for three years of courtly dining and imaginative booking. 330 Ritch is one of the few supper clubs in San Francisco willing to risk musical vicissitude. Whether they're Anglophilic mods, swing fiends, Latin lovers, disco superfreaks, or laid-back jazzheads, any music fan can expect a stylized setting, a large dance floor, and superlative sounds. The entertainment on Friday, Oct. 17, includes Britpoppers Tom, Dick, & Harry and DJs Kirk and Henry spinning disco and new wave; on Saturday, Oct. 18, Anibade performs and DJs George and Consuelo spin jazz, soul, and funk. Both shows begin at 10 p.m. Each night offers a jubilation feast including Dungeness crab cakes, grilled king salmon, roasted garlic chicken, fettuccine Margarita, and chocolate mousse. Tickets are $10 ($35 with dinner); call 541-9574.

The masters of the white-trash rumba are back with 12 new can-shaking songs about roadkill, trucker tweek, and gooey Southern snacks. When Southern Culture on the Skids released Dirt Track Date in 1995, not everyone fully realized the genius of groove-based hillbilly e-rock-ita. That didn't silence the Skids' divine calling: They continued to toss fried chicken to the crowd (not to be mistaken with Cash Money, who will be tossing sizzling bacon at the Bottom of the Hill on Wednesday) and soon had legions of city folk dancing around like moon-drunk buffoons. The new album, Plastic Seat Sweat, picks up where Dirt Track left off, but the kids added Hammond organ, electric sitar, and a little banjo, which -- in my humble opinion -- is gettin' a little uppity. As SCOTS have already proven, you don't need much more than drums, bass, and guitar to construct the perfect Naugahyde 12-gauge. Southern Culture on the Skids perform at the Great American Music Hall on Saturday, Oct. 18, at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10-12; call 885-0750.

Both Davie Allan and Southern Culture on the Skids would really appreciate the Rat Bike Contest, the Hamburger Mary's happening that rewards the owners of road-wrecked motorcycles for having the guts or guile to keep the sorry things on the street. These vehicular monstrosities are held together by chicken wire and chewing gum, and while they can hardly pass as motorcycles anymore, they have a certain backyard charm. (Overly enthusiastic winners have been known to roar through the restaurant in mufflerless glory.) As usual, the contest is held in memory of Robert Jones, the chef who started the whole thing before succumbing to lymphoma. Bring earplugs and check out the bikes in front of Hamburger Mary's on Sunday, Oct. 19, at 5 p.m. Admission is free; call 626-1985.

By the time Romanian-born Alexandra Nechita was 8 years old her cubist artwork was hanging in solo gallery exhibits all over the world; she was called a pint-size Picasso before she finished the fifth grade. Now, at the ripe old age of 12, Nechita sells her canvases for as much as $150,000 apiece. Both the Grammys and the Romanian Embassy in London have commissioned her work. Despite the fact that Nechita's art hangs in the homes of Queen Elizabeth II, Emperor Akhahito, Ellen DeGeneres, Little Richard, Melissa Etheridge, and Whoopi Goldberg, it's widely accepted that the little overachiever hasn't hit her stride. How's that for infuriating? A reception to open her exhibit at the Dyansen Gallery of San Francisco will be held on Sunday, Oct. 19, at 1 p.m. Admission is free; call 928-0596.

You can't get enough of those Slavs, you say? Even with the infallible Marta Sebestyen performing last Tuesday and Nechita exhibiting all weekend, your taste is only whetted? Lucky you: It's time for the annual Marco Polo Festival. (Bet you didn't know that we had one of those.) For those crippled by the American educational system, Marco Polo is not just a swimming pool game -- he was an explorer from an island near Dubrovnik, Croatia. To celebrate his travels, the local Slavonic community welcomes the Yesetra brothers' Tambuitza Orchestra performing Bosnian songs, the Slavonijo Kolo Ensemble performing a Macedonian dance suite, the Dalmacijo Singers performing Croatian songs, the Slavonian Traveling Band, the Polish dance ensemble Loweizanie, and Monica the, um, flamenco dancer. Traditional Croatian food will also be on hand at the Slavonic Cultural Center (which is like a huge Eastern European rec room) on Sunday, Oct. 19, at 3 p.m. Tickets are $10; call 661-0973.

-- Silke Tudor

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Silke Tudor

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