Thursday, August 8
EXPENSIVE MUSIC: When you get to see two of the top artists of the moment live at the same time, you don’t complain about having to drive or MARC up to Baltimore (okay, you can always complain about driving up to Baltimore). But it’ll probably be worth it to see the Legends of Summer tour, featuring Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake, they of semi-disappointing but still pretty good recent albums. Tickets ($57 to $281) are available online. 8 PM.
FREE MUSIC: Every weekend this month, Dance Place is throwing free performances. Tonight, jazz trumpeter Freddie Dunn will be at the Brookland Metro Station during rush hour. Head there and then check out a neighborhood you probably rarely go to. If you’re semi-fancy, grab a pizza at Menomale afterward; if you’re not, check out Pizza Kingdom, which has the funniest restaurant Facebook page in recent memory. 5:30 PM.
COMEDY: Standup comedy is fun, but if you get bad performers, you’re kind of stuck there being polite for a while. Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse has a solution: a quick hour of cheap comedy, several performers, and just an hourlong showtime. It’s the perfect warmup for a movie or a night out across the bridge. $5. 8 PM.
FILM: The Dunes is showcasing two DC-set films from DC filmmakers: Under the Bourbon Moon and Saving Mr. Yamamoto. Afterward, neo-soul singer Desiree Jordan will perform. As with most things at the Dunes, there’ll probably be dancing afterwards. Tickets ($10) are available online. 7 PM.
Friday, August 9
COMEDY: Did you know that Dustin Diamond (a.k.a. Screech from Saved by the Bell) is not only still alive but is now performing standup? (It beats his sex tape from a few years ago—don’t Google that.) Judging from his promo photo, he also does Tony Wonder-esque magic. I don’t know if he’s funny or not, but his page classifies his genre as “rated R (mild),” whatever that means. Anyway, he’ll be at Alexandria’s Old Town Theater for four shows this weekend. Tickets ($18 to $49) are available online (also Saturday). 8 PM.
STORYTELLING: What happens when you combine a live karaoke band, pop songs, and sung, real-life stories about breaking the law or otherwise doing bad? Who knows. But Story League is going to try it anyway at Black Cat—a kind of Bad Girls Club for people with actual talent. Tickets ($15) are available online. 9 PM.
DANCE: Bad music has hit the point where it’s ironic/fun to like it, so while there’s a market for Cause’s Guilty Pleasures dance night, people don’t actually feel bad about liking crappy music. So proudly head there if you wanna dance to boy-band music, ’90s alternative, and other songs you used to sing in the shower but now make YouTube covers of. Free. 9 PM.
INTERVIEWS: There’s a reason people like reading interviews: We are nosy by definition. Satisfy your curiosity at Ask Roulette, in which ordinary people sit onstage and are asked invasive questions in the hopes of finding out a little bit about the human condition, or at least having some fun. The Washington Post’s Clinton Yates, NPR’s Linda Holmes, and Slate’s Dave Weigel will participate and help move things along. It’s also a chance for you to ask Yates whether, a few days later, he thinks he went a little overboard with his Twitter reactions to the WaPo sale (someone please ask this). Free. 7 PM.
Saturday, August 10
ART: Learn a new skill this weekend! No Kings Collective will be at Art Enables teaching a free “handwritten typography” course. The style is all the rage on promo and concert posters these days. They’ll also be teaching how to transfer that skill to large surfaces, which means you’ll be ready to become the next big underground graffiti artist in no time. The space is also selling select pieces for 50 percent off. Free. 1 PM.
DANCE: Was there a bigger disappointment this summer than the fact that the cicadas never showed up? Black Cat is remedying that with Cicadance—it’s importing thousands of cicadas and putting them in the backstage space. The cicadas’ lovely song will be the soundtrack, and the exits will be locked until daylight. Okay, none of that is happening, but how cool would that be? Instead, the deejays of Cicadance night suggest you “dance, mate, and die.” Check it out at your own risk. $5. 10 PM.
COMEDY: The Brick Penguin comedy troupe heads to RFD to perform some brand new sketch comedy for you. Expect weird costumes and debauchery. $5. 8 and 10 PM.
SWAP: Instead of tossing your old stuff, bring it to the Bruce Monroe Community Center for the Freecycle Fete, a kind of free flea market/stuff swap. It’s a good chance to get rid of stuff that still has value, but that would be better served clogging up someone else’s house for a while (and vice versa). Free. 2 to 7 PM.
Sunday, August 11
BREAKING BAD: Whenever Walter White boozes, things tend to get out of hand (at least in the first couple of seasons—we’re not all obsessed, okay?). But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t to celebrate the beginning of the end of Breaking Bad. Head to Jack Rose for a viewing party of the new episode, featuring free samples of Whistlepig whiskey, special tastings and (hopefully meth-free) cocktails, and Breaking Bad trivia.
COMEDY: This is a good week if you’re obsessed with ’90s TV. Uncle Joey (Dave Coulier) will be at Jammin Java performing standup. Unlike Bob Saget, Coulier keeps his comedy fairly PG. Expect some digs at his former costars and some impressions: Coulier didn’t find steady work after Full House, but he did do some voiceover work. Tickets ($20) are available online. 8 PM.
DANCE: From what I can tell, Cut Copy doesn’t have anything planned in DC, but for some reason, the Australian dance band’s bassist, Ben Browning, will be here performing a deejay set at U Street Music Hall. We’re not complaining: They’re one of the top dance bands of the moment. $5. 9 PM.
Know of something cool going on around town? E-mail Jason Koebler at firstname.lastname@example.org, or find him on Twitter.