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The Bitch Is Back! Audubon Hotel Reunion
10 p.m. — 4 a.m. Fri., Feb. 16
Country Club, 634 Louisa St., 945-0742

Back in the very last part of the 20th century, the Audubon Hotel on St. Charles Avenue was a seedy SRO operation that housed a bizarre — and as some remember, beautiful — art and performance scene that could be described as '90s New Orleans' answer to the Lower East Side of New York in the early '70s. The surreal, dimly lit downstairs bar — full of odds and ends of homemade objets d'art, hotel residents in various stages of sobriety and deshabille, scraps of tinfoil and things spray-painted silver — was the shadowy, sparkly underbelly of owner Jon Spradlin's other space, the opulent Red Room several blocks up St. Charles Avenue. Drag queens, libertines, rave kids, vinyl-clad fetish devotees and punk rockers made it their nexus, hosting elaborate art exhibitions that would fill the upstairs rooms, fantastically whimsical fashion shows, and at the time, the only live DJ nights that reflected what was going on nationally in the then-booming world of house music. Whether or not it's a good idea, those who lived to tell the tale are reconvening to try and hustle up the old magic for one more night, featuring all the usual suspects, with DJ sets from psychedelic house DJ Tom Harvey plus Bryan Smith, Pablo Z, Caleb Law and Dave Garcia. Plenty of performance art, belly dancers, over-the-top drag performances and other live art will be happening as well. Tickets $5; a limited number of top-shelf open-bar VIP tickets for $30 are available. Call for details. — Alison Fensterstock


Chocolate Kitty II
10 p.m. Fri., Feb. 16
Dragon's Den, 435 Esplanade Ave., 949-1750

The official buzz around this second annual smoking-turntable dance party event declares that it's time to pay tribute to the illest underground female hip-hop and funk DJ artists and turntablists in and around New Orleans. They also happen to be the only female DJs and turntablists in and around New Orleans. It's true that the control seat behind the wheels of steel — even after almost 30 years of hip-hop culture — has overwhelmingly been occupied by XY chromosomes, but in the end, crafty ladies won't be denied. More skillful spinderellas are popping up every day. Boy or girl, though, genuine turntable artistry — that is, mixing fresh tunes live from recorded individual tracks, beats, sound effects and what have you — is rare in New Orleans, and these women are bringing a sextuple threat. Featured DJs include Soul Sister, with her skillfully blended rare funk and soul grooves; hip-hop queen and Media Darling records artist Lady Fingaz (pictured), who hasn't spun in New Orleans since Katrina; competitive battle DJ Beverly Skillz; DJ Beatgrrl, who's invented a new hybrd sound she calls "ghettro"; and local newbies Robyn Steel and Bomshell Boogie. The girl power will be mighty, but most important, the soul power even more so. Tickets $6 for the ladies, $7 for the fellas. — Fensterstock


Old Crow Medicine Show
10 p.m. Sun., Feb. 18
House of Blues, 225 Decatur St., 310-4999;

When Old Crow Medicine Show headlined at the Ryman Auditorium, the historic home of the Grand Ole Opry, in summer 2005, they'd come a long way from their origins busking together in the mountain towns of North Carolina. It was there that they met folk icon Doc Watson, whose support for their old-time Appalachian string-band sound led to appearances at MerleFest, the monster Bonnaroo festival and on NPR's A Prairie Home Companion . Their latest record, Big Iron World (Nettwerk Records), is a dented washtub on a rickety back porch overflowing with string-picking, back country blues, jug-band music and snake-oil sales pitches. Old-timey music, indeed, this collection of originals reveals a deep understanding and connection to the soul and mystery of vintage southern Appalachia. You can almost smell the mist on the mountain. Opening is Gill Landry, a solo artist whose deep, dark, mournful vocals and twangy, minor-key picking sounds as if it's coming from the bottom of a haunted well. Tickets $20. — Fensterstock


Marc Stone Band with special guests
10 p.m., Fri., Feb. 16; 10 p.m., Mon., Feb. 19
Old Point Bar, 545 Patterson St., 364-0950;

Marc Stone and his band have become not only a great roots rock/blues aggregation, but have acquired a well-deserved reputation for being a great backing group for whomever needs a solid base upon which to build their musical joy. For Mardi Gras, Stone and compatriots take over the Old Point to bookend the Mardi Gras weekend. Friday brings Jackson, Miss., guitarist Vasti Jackson and singer Mathilda Jones (pictured) to Algiers. Jackson balances out the raw Delta blues with the smoother urban blues that the city of Jackson is known for. Mathilda Jones recently reconnected with Stone after the storm, and her singing has lost none of its fieriness. Lundi Gras, look out for Shannon McNally, whose vocals and stage presence have a mystical slow-burning ache and Lynn Drury, whose charismatic guitar playing and singing are a hoot, even when she's singing sad songs. The harmonizing those two can do will bring chills and maybe some thrills to your spine. Tickets $5 in advance, $8 at the door. — David Kunian

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