Outdoor revelry continues to dominate high summer in Madison, with WaunaFest, Taste of Sun Prairie, Atwood Summerfest, and Greek Fest lined up for this weekend, but they'll joined by a host of purely music-based fests too, including Live on King Street with The Budos Band, the Watchtower Rock & Metal Music Festival, the WJJO Band Camp with Korn, the Madison Music Foundry's Rock Workshop Showcase, and MikeFestII. The calendar also includes: productions of The Royal Family and Parade; a book reading by John Jackson Miller; standup by Tim Heidecker and Neil Hamburger; a performance by the Kalman Balogh Gypsy Trio; an electroLUST party; and, more live music from We Are the Willows, Aesop Rock, Now Now with Tu Fawning, Ian Cooke, Dirty Disco Kidz, and Charlie Brooks & the Way It Is; and, the Best of the 48 Hour Film Project 2012 screening.
NOTEWORTHY: Belarus declares independence from Soviet Union, 1990.
Centennial Park, Waunakee, July 26-29
The season of fairs rolls on. This one takes place up in Madison's neighbor to the north and promises food, carnival rides, sports tournaments, a parade and music (Dan Collins Band, Cherry Pie, Bob Klinger). You know, the works.
King Street, 5 pm
At this free concert outside the Isthmus offices, Nick Nice will deejay atop the Majestic Theatre's marquee to warm up the crowd for the Budos Band, an Afro-soul ensemble that transforms inspiration from Mulatu Astatke, J.C. Davis and Black Sabbath into wild breakbeats, funky horn solos and occasional hints of psychedelic doom-rock. With Natty Nation.
American Players Theatre, Spring Green, 7 pm. Also Thursday, Aug. 2, 7:30 pm
Wondrous APT veteran Tracy Michelle Arnold is at the heart of this staging of Edna Ferber and George Kaufman's 1927 comedy about a multigenerational clan of actors and actresses. The antics are at times wildly amusing, and the play has poignant things to say about families and work.
Bartell Theatre, 7:30 pm. Also Thursday (7:30 pm), Saturday (7:30 pm) & Sunday (6 pm), July 26, 28 & 29
Music Theatre of Madison stages the Tony-winning 1998 musical about the 1913 murder trial of a Jewish factory owner in Georgia. The show closed after a fairly short Broadway run, but over the years its reputation has grown.
Project Lodge, 7:30 pm
As We Are the Willows, Eau Claire native Peter Miller explores folk-pop's borderlands with simple melodies and detail-driven lyrics inspired by the noisy streets of Minneapolis, the city he now calls home. With Bone & Bell, Phox and Pioneer.
Brink Lounge, 8 pm
Three Eastern European musicians honor traditional music from their homeland and some of its most tuneful exports, such as gypsy-jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt. Hungarian bandleader Kalman Balogh often steals the show with his cimbalom, a giant hammered dulcimer that can play both melodies and percussive rhythms.
Barrymore Theatre, 9 pm
This celebrated rapper and producer unleashes his masterful flow through tunes from his new album, Skelethon, which debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 a few weeks ago (see Tour Stop). With Rob Sonic & DJ Big Wiz, Edison and Dark Time Sunshine.
Terrace at UW Memorial Union, 9:30 pm
NPR recently named Now Now's entrancing pop one of their favorite new arrivals of 2012, while Uncut compared Tu Fawning's tribal beats and off-kilter R&B to "an absinthe-drenched dance band in a decaying ballroom." With Au.
High Noon Saloon, 9:30 pm
Brand-new music festivals are popping up all over Madison this year. This mini-fest features the harmonizing metalheads of Orphan Bloom, the progressive hardcore project Cleobury and the headbang-inspiring band the Faith Hills Have Eyes. The night's wackiest performer is Butt Funnel, a rocktronica group that may or may not be from Bonn, Germany.
NOTEWORTHY: French revolutionary Robespierre guillotined, 1794.
Willow Island at Alliant Energy Center, 11 am
Korn highlight their trailblazing fusion of dubstep and nu metal, as well as material from their hard-rocking back catalog. The lineup features more than 10 other artists, including Taproot, Ghosts of August, the Dreaming and the Veer Union. See Madison Music Foundry's Rock Workshop Showcase
High Noon Saloon, 11:30 am
Kids enrolled in music lessons at Madison Music Foundry will warm some hearts and melt some faces with a performance of original tunes and covers from the rock 'n' roll canon. Proceeds will benefit the Rock Workshop scholarship fund.
Cannery Square, noon-7 pm
The eastern suburb -- we remember when it was a just a cute small town -- shows off its culinary best. Sample the fare from local restaurants, and, as a palate cleanser, enjoy kids' activities and live music by the Stellanovas, Big Bang String Thing and Saturday Morning Cartel.
2000-2100 blocks of Atwood Avenue, 12:15-9 pm. Also Sunday, July 29, noon-7 pm
Musical acts gather in the Schenk's Corners neighborhood, along with food carts and other vendors, to raise money for the Goodman Community Center. Highlights on Saturday include Count This Penny (2 pm), the Cash Box Kings (5:30 pm), Anna Wang & the Oh Boys (5:30 pm) and the People Brothers Band (6:40 pm). On Sunday, check out Reptile Palace Orchestra (2 pm) and Hewn (6 pm).
Assumption Greek Orthodox Church, 3-9 pm. Also Sunday, July 29, 11 am-6 pm
They gave us Homer, the Olympics and galaktoboureko. So celebrate the good people of Greece at this bash, which features music, tours of the church, fun for the kids and, of course, food, food, food.
Barnes & Noble-West Towne, 3 pm
The author discusses Star Wars: Lost Tribe of the Sith, which gathers his novellas about yet another arcane branch of George Lucas' pop mythology. Miller originally made his name as a comic book writer, but now straight prose is his thing.
Indie Coffee, 7 pm
This Australian-born, Colorado-bred singer-songwriter is also a talented cellist and pianist. Using an effects pedal to loop his instrumental solos, he crafts chamber-pop gems and prog-influenced compositions that have earned him the top spot in the Denver Post's Underground Music Poll.
High Noon Saloon, 7 pm
Punks with hearts of gold, including American Dead and A Gnarly Swell, raise money for the Dane County Humane Society's puppies and kittens at this hard-edged show. The lineup also includes rock by I Am Dragon, soulful folk by Color Me Once and metal-inspired tunes by One Last Run. With Woodson, Captive, Joshua Circle and the Frenetic.
Majestic Theatre, 7 pm
A pair of smart comedians pay a call. Heidecker is best known as the comedy partner of Eric Wareheim, with whom he created television shows like Tom Goes to the Mayor and Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! Hamburger, the alter ego of comic Gregg Turkington, is the world's worst comedian, with terrible timing and even worse punchlines. So why are we laughing so hard? With DJ Doggpound and Kenny Strasser.
Segredo, 9 pm
The bloggers at Hype Machine, Club Action and Bangerz Only have touted the medley of glitch, dubstep, hip-hop, electro house and visual art dished up by this local collective's DJs and producers.
Terrace at UW Memorial Union, 9:30 pm
Trained by some of Motown's most accomplished teachers, Brooks' pipes emanate old-school soul that could summon the spirit of Otis Redding to the shores of Lake Mendota (see Music).
Majestic Theatre, 10 pm
Wyatt Agard has crafted another multimedia spectacle that includes a light show and a ton of techno, glitch and dubstep tunes, courtesy of fellow DJs VON, Foil, Poptart & Noodle and M Pire. To foster some racy dance moves, Agard will perform a sultry set of his own as well.
NOTEWORTHY: Lady Diana Spencer marries Prince Charles, 1981.
High Noon Saloon, 6 pm
A week ago, teams of local filmmakers were charged with writing, shooting, scoring and editing films within a two-day timeframe. How did they turn out? Find out at tonight's screening.