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A&E Feature 

What to Know Before You Go

MUSIC

The Radiators 10 p.m. Fri., Aug. 24
Tiptina's, 501 Napoleon Ave., 895-TIPS; www.tipitinas.com
10 p.m. Sat. Aug. 25
Howlin' Wolf., 907 S. Peters St., 522-WOLF

The New Orleans bar band to beat all bar bands is blowing back into town from a summer tour for two local gigs that, even after three decades of marathon shows, are sure to please the pants off of loyal Fish Heads. The Rads formed in the '70s, during a time when New Orleans music was in a fecund state of evolution, blending traditional New Orleans sounds with contemporary rock and funk vibes — the same period that birthed the feel-good funk of the Meters. Since its first regular gig at a pizza joint, its houserocking blend of blues, soul, R&B, Cajun, zydeco and gospel has been raising roofs and shaking shacks all over the world. After all this time, the band is still going strong; with last year's release, Dreaming Out Loud , on its new Radz Records label, the members proved they can still radiate pure New Orleans roots rock like champs. Tickets $15 for each show. — Alison Fensterstock

EVENT

Big Easy Rollergirls Pin-up Calendar Release Party
9 p.m. Sat., Aug. 25
One Eyed Jacks, 615 Toulouse St., 569-8361; www.oneyedjacks.net

After a few seasons of regular bouts, only a dozen Big Easy Rollergirls remained unmarked enough to be photographed, so the team decided to commemorate the moment with a pin-up calendar. Just kidding. (About the disfigurement that is.) The violent vixens of New Orleans' favorite alternative-sports franchise clean up real good, and they also throw a hell of a party. This event celebrates the release of their 16-month 2007-08 calendar, which shows the saucy athletes rolling and relaxing at some of their favorite local haunts. The fundraiser features performances from the non-skating sexpots of Fleur de Tease burlesque and music by avant-garde bang-and-clangers Liquidrone. The infamous Rollergirls' penalty wheel — where you can spin and take a chance to, among other things, spank or be spanked by a skater — will let fans in on the hard-hitting action. There's also a raffle with meals, spa treatments and gift certificates from local businesses as prizes. Tickets $12. — Fensterstock

EVENT

Krewe of OAK Midsummer Mardi Gras
8 p.m. Sat., Aug. 25
Riverbend, parade starts at the Maple Leaf Bar, 8316 Oak St.; www.kreweofoak.org

The summer heat might have us all longing for 50-degree Mardi Gras weather but we may be happy to get highs in the 50s when Fat Tuesday comes early in 2008. That means Carnival is coming sooner than you think and it's time to get in the spirit with the Krewe of OAK, which stands for "Outrageous And Kinky." This year's parade theme is "Same Old Thong and Dance," and the krewe encourages inappropriate dress when you fete Queen Laurie Glasier and King Mark Morice. The pub-crawl-style event loops its way around the Riverbend and the procession includes giant heads of famous neighborhood residents and Maple Leaf Bar regulars as well as a band, costumed walking groups like the Bearded Oysters (pictured) and others. Parading with the group is free. The post-parade ball is for krewe members. Annual membership costs $150 and includes two tickets to both the summer and Mardi Gras parties. See the Web site (www.kreweofoak.org) for membership information. — Lauren LaBorde

EVENT

Cutting Edge Music Business Conference
Wed.-Fri., Aug. 22-26
Renaissance Arts Hotel, 700 Tchoupitoulas St., 945-1800; www.cuttingedgemusicbusiness.com

For the past 15 years, the annual Cutting Edge Music Business Conference has been a kind of local beginners' South by Southwest for music-biz hopefuls including bands, filmmakers and entertainment lawyers. The panels, lectures and seminars that take place throughout the long weekend orbit broadly around the conference's general dedicated mission of "clarifying income opportunities in the music industry." This means several dozen chances to get advice on everything from securing financing and distribution for an independent film to the lucrative business of placing songs in television shows and movies to snazzing up a press kit for an unsigned band. Most conference events are pretty nuts-and-bolts, but a few will appeal to civilians. C-Murder (aka Corey Miller, the rapper jailbird turned novelist) speaks on a panel about indie labels. MusiCares is sponsoring a discussion on dealing with substance abuse in the industry. We're big fans of the annual Roots Music Gathering, which brings together artists, educators, tradition bearers and enthusiasts of indigenous American sounds for a series of live interviews and other events. At night, participating venues around town will host showcases for unsigned and indie bands from New Orleans and around the country (Ruthie Foster pictured). Prices for registration packages vary. Visit www.cuttingedgemusicbusiness.com for rates and a full schedule. — Fensterstock

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