Lyrical lessons rain down

Gilmore Girl 

Lyrical lessons rain down

TUE 11/16
Dana Gilmore flips the script on every expectation about poetry performance. She's raw but never crass, romantic yet far from sappy. She's tough enough to inspire admiration but vulnerable enough to attract empathy. Her sharp wordplay and internal rhyme schemes make her work come alive on the page. The Kansas City native earned national respect with her smoldering appearances on HBO's Def Poetry Jam. Live, Gilmore's rhythmic flow, occasionally set to a hip-hop backing track, builds to payoff lines that spark ovations. For example, "Wife, Woman, Friend" describes the abrupt disintegration of a seemingly serious relationship. Gilmore's tale of ill-advised devotion to an undeserving lover provokes loud mmm-hmmm acknowledgments and other rowdy responses from audience members who recognize the scenario. In "Wife, Woman, Friend, Part 2," Gilmore rips through a hilarious list of failed flings, from a CEO to a wanna-be rap star to a pathological liar. She starts spittin' verses at 7 p.m Tuesday at the Blue Room (1616 East 18th Street). Call 816-474-8463. --Andrew Miller

A Life of Crime

MON 11/15
Former KC resident and self-proclaimed "demon dog" crime writer James Ellroy is promoting his new book, Destination: Morgue!: L.A. Tales, which contains essays about his truly bizarre Los Angeles childhood and three new novellas. Hear him howl at 7 p.m. Monday at the Uptown Theater (3700 Broadway). Call 913-384-3126. -- Jason Harper

Shaken, Not Stirred

FRI 11/12
Review magazine, which debuted six years ago, provides comprehensive coverage of KC's visual arts scene. We usually skim it for photos of crushworthy art guys we haven't met, and we're hoping there'll be some at All Shook Up, the magazine's benefit. The fund-raiser's early festivities are from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Shook, Hardy & Bacon law offices (2555 Grand); then comes the after-party from 8:30 to 11 at Review's new digs (1700 Campbell). Big spenders can cough up $600 for two tickets and a Tom Gregg print; regular admission is $50. Or you can chalk your old student ID and get in for $20. Call 816-885-6881. -- Annie Fischer

Hurly-Burly

SAT 11/13
"It's not just girls stripping," promises Peregrine Honig, director of the Fahrenheit Gallery (1717 West Ninth Street, 816-304-5477), of the venue's Burlesque Revue at 10 p.m. Saturday. Given the genre's overexposure these days, we were a little worried about that. Honig says, however, that after months of rehearsals, the mix of performers -- such as Etta Vendetta, Temper Tantrum and veterans of the KC cabaret scene, with live sets by International Hands -- is going to be pretty incredible. Tickets are $10; the doors open at 9 p.m. -- Fischer

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