Sun Prairie shines under sunlight or shadows this week as Jimmy the Groundhog stirs for his big day. The calendar also includes: a lecture by Rob Nixon; a performance by Patti LuPone; and, more live music from Cass McCombs, Dark Star Orchestra, Supersuckers, AraabMuzik, and Chants.
NOTEWORTHY: Tet offensive begins, 1968.
High Noon Saloon, 8 pm
After earning reams of critical praise for his two 2011 releases, Wit's End and Humor Risk, the mercurial folk-punk troubadour has resumed his nomadic ways, visiting the TV studios of both Democracy Now! and Pitchfork to showcase his newest tunes. Celebrate his lovable eccentricities at this show (see Tour Stop). With Frank Fairfield.
NOTEWORTHY: Madison sets a city record for January with a one-month snow total of 31.8 inches, 1929.
NOTEWORTHY: Patty Hearst leaves prison after serving time for bank robbery, 1979.
Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, 5:30 pm
The UW Center for the Humanities presents this lecture, "Slow Violence and Environmental Storytelling," by UW English professor Nixon. He'll draw on his latest research in talking about environmental catastrophes and the writers and filmmakers who document them -- and the people combating them.
Overture Hall, 7:30 pm
Though the two-time Tony winner currently plays Rachel Berry's mother on Glee, she'll draw from her starring role in the 2008 revival of Gypsy during this show, which also includes numbers from Anything Goes, Oliver! and the world of contemporary pop.
NOTEWORTHY: Vince Lombardi signs five-year contract to coach Green Bay Packers, 1959.
Sun Prairie Groundhog Day
Behind the Sun Prairie Chamber of Commerce, 109 E. Main St., 7 am
Punxsutawney Phil? Feh. We have our own meteorologically inclined groundhog, Sun Prairie's Jimmy, who will have something to say about our weather future at this cheerful annual event.
Dark Star Orchestra
Barrymore Theatre, 8 pm
No one compares to the Grateful Dead, but if anyone comes close, it's Dark Star Orchestra, one of the most famous Dead tribute bands. They don't just play songs by Jerry Garcia and the gang; they re-create entire shows from the past.
Frequency, 8 pm
The black sheep of Sub Pop's 1990s roster, this party-ready rock band straddles genres such as garage punk, grunge and country with aplomb and hilarity. This show will likely feature material from 2008's Get It Together and fan favorites from their popular cowpunk album, 1997's Must've Been High.
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
This high-flying producer pairs chopped-up samples with rapid-fire hi-hat drumming and thunderous kick drums to propel hip-hop tracks toward listeners' stereos, landing gigs with Busta Rhymes and Fabolous in the process. With DJs Jack Mulqueen and Vinnie Toma.
Dragonfly Lounge, 9:30 pm
Jordan Cohen, a percussion whiz from Mama Digdown's Brass Band, highlights his recent solo work, which teems with inventive rhythms and infectious, sample-driven melodies. With Dirty Jive and the Watercourse Quartet.