A weekend’s worth of Valentine’s Day celebrations

SWEET TREATS: The Secret B-Sides perform their album Flowers & Chocolate in its entirety. The show at The Altamont Theatre also includes a chocolate sipping ceremony. Photo by Jason Briscoe

When it comes to romance, local soul outfit The Secret B-Sides might have cornered the market. Already known for a R&B-meets-hip-hop-meets-otherworldly groove, the quartet underscores baby-making jams with a sense of humor. Sounds culled from the ’70s — thick bass, swaggering organ — share sonic space with musings of dinosaurs and flying saucers. For Valentine’s Day, the band ups the ante, serving up those otherworldly love songs with flowers and chocolate. It’s a romantic trifecta.

“The first show we ever had was on Valentine’s Eve,” says frontman Juan Holladay. That was back in 2007 or so. The Flowers & Chocolate for Valentine’s Eve show, to be held at The Altamont Theatre Saturday, Feb. 13, is a chance for the Secret B-Sides to revisit that auspicious concert.

But band anniversary aside, the show does not reference blossoms and cocoa-based treats in vain. The event begins with a Silvermoon-hosted chocolate sipping ceremony. The Secret B-Sides headline, performing their album Flowers & Chocolate in its entirety (and all ticket-holders receive a copy of the CD). The local duo I, Star — a “chocolate-voiced songstress and her poetic emcee husband,” according to a press release — opens the concert. Worth noting: the vocalist, Stacey Aradhana Silvermoon, is also the chocolatier.

As for the flowers, though there won’t necessarily be live blooms (hey, it’s February!), there will be flower projection art along with the music.

The all-ages show starts at 8 p.m. Holliday, who’s been booking shows closer to home since the birth of his second daughter, says there are sure to be kids at the event. “I hope it’s superdiverse,” he says of the crowd. And with an earlier start time, more revelers can make it out.

$15 advance/ $20 day of show/$25 VIP seating. thealtamont.com/Valentines

More to love

• Here’s one kind of passion nearly everyone can get behind: the love of music. On The Mothlight stage, it’s expressed not in band form but through the burlesque revue I ❤️Rock ’N’ Roll, featuring performances by Queen April, Deb au Nare, Lune Noirr, Ariel Vanator, Anita Powers and others. Friday, Feb. 12, at 10 p.m. $15. themothlight.com

• Chicago-based Comedian Andy Woodhull has a bit called “Vampire Love” in which he refers to his girlfriend’s thought process as “a never-ending stream of crap.” He also talks about his wedding dreams, in which he marries Princess Leia and swims in a pool of guacamole. So it’s kind of a strange take on romance, but those pro- and anti-love can laugh along at Woodhull’s Valentine’s Show at The Millroom. Saturday, Feb. 13, at 7 and 9:30 p.m. $15 advance/$17.50 at the door. woodhullvalentines.eventbrite.com

• Violinist Bella Hristova makes her debut with the Asheville Symphony Orchestra, performing Beethoven’s Violin Concerto. Hristova, who was born in Bulgaria, recently recorded an album of solo works and has performed with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the City of London Sinfonia, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Korea’s Cheongju Symphony Orchestra and many others. Of the featured concerto, music director Daniel Meyers says, “Beethoven’s single entry into the genre remains at the pinnacle of music ever written for the instrument.” And it’s hard to get more romantic than the violin. The concert (which includes selections from Mendelssohn and Strauss) takes place at the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium Saturday, Feb. 13, at 8 p.m. $19.50-$59.50. ashevillesymphony.org

SERENADE: Delancey performs new songs and celebrates Valentine’s Day at 185 King Street in Brevard. Photo courtesy of Delancey
SERENADE: Violet Delancey performs new songs and celebrates Valentine’s Day at 185 King Street in Brevard. Photo courtesy of Delancey

• Though February can be chilly, it’s likely to get hot at The Grey Eagle — the venue hosts PROM! (aka a chance for adults to relive or do over those sweaty-palmed high school gym dances of our misspent youths). The original Memphis lineup of Reigning Sound plays the party (that’s sure to be better than whatever Journey cover band played your first prom), bookended by DJ sets. Saturday, Feb. 13, at 9 p.m. $12 advance/$15 day of show. thegreyeagle.com

• “When the clock strikes midnight / when illusions fall away / I’ll be runnin’ with the moonlight / oh, Prince Charming, don’t let me slip away,” sings Violet Delancey on the lead track from her new album, When the Clock Strikes. The record includes contributions from Nashville and Asheville greats including guitarist Bryan Sutton, steel player Paul Franklin and fiddle player Stuart Duncan. Delancey performs new songs and celebrates Valentine’s Day at 185 King Street in Brevard Saturday, Feb. 13. 185kingst.com

• The New York Studio for Stage and Screen presents V-Day Black Mountain, “a celebration of women, sensuality and the performing arts.” Held Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 13 and 14, at White Horse Black Mountain, the experience begins with preshow doo-wop, with choreography by Jessica Barrett and vocals by Kat Williams. A performance of The Vagina Monologues, based on playwright Eve Ensler’s interviews with more than 200 women, features actress Kelly McGillis. A funk, blues, Motown and disco dance party follows. There’s also a three-course dinner option ($65) with a tableside serenade. The event benefits Our VOICE and is part of the global campaign One Billion Rising, “an effort to galvanize action to end gender violence against women and girls.” 6:30 p.m. dinner, 8 p.m. show. $25 advance/$30 at the door. whitehorseblackmountain.com

SONG AND DANCE: Local vocalist Kat Williams sings doo-wop to choreography by Jessica Barrett as part of the New York Studio for Stage and Screen’s event, V-Day Black Mountain. Photo courtesy of Williams
SONG AND DANCE: Local vocalist Kat Williams sings doo-wop to choreography by Jessica Barrett as part of the New York Studio for Stage and Screen’s event, V-Day Black Mountain. Photo courtesy of Williams

• “Partner Yoga is supportive and fun — especially when paired with chocolate,” says a press release from One Center Yoga’s two-hour class, Partner Up Yoga on Valentine’s Day. Husband-and-wife yoga teachers Carol and Michael More lead the workshop, which aims to “improve communication, trust, union, and intimacy while fostering balance, flexibility, strength and gentleness.” There will be French Broad chocolates to sample after class. Sunday, Feb. 14, from 1 to 3 p.m. $30 advance/$35 day of event. onecenteryoga.com

• It might be a challenge to explain to your date that no, going to the Ugly Lovers art show and Valentine’s dance is not intended as a personal statement. But once your sweetie agrees, there will be works for show and sale by Gus Cutty, Hannah Dansie, Alli Good, Julie Armbruster, Maxx Hawthorn-feist, Dustin Hinson, Nathanael Roney, Justin Rabuck, Rosy Kirby, Andy Herod, Noah Prinsen, Reba West Fraser, Courtney Leigh Johnson, Jen Toledo, Denise Carbonell, Derek Dominy, Jason Krekel and Kristin Foley, music by DJ Dead Air Supply and — because this is a benefit for Brother Wolf Animal Rescue — puppies! Dressing up is recommended. The event takes place Sunday, Feb. 14, from 5 to 9 p.m. on the second floor of The Cotton Mill Building in the River Arts District. avl.mx/272

• It’s double the love at Isis Restaurant & Music Hall. The venue hosts Valentine’s Day Jazz with the Keith Davis Trio in the lounge on Sunday, Feb. 14, at 5:30 p.m. Only 50 tickets will be sold to the intimate concert. $10. On the mainstage, Sweet Claudette performs a country-meets-Motown Valentine’s Day Celebration. The show starts at 8:30 p.m. $10 advance/$12 at the door. isisasheville.com

• And it’s triple the love at Lex 18 where two different shows span three days. On Friday and Saturday, Feb. 12 and 13, the Brittany Howe & Bob Strain Trio perform Besame Mucho, a 1920s and ’30s-era Hollywood club-style dinner show, complete with dancers and love poems. On Sunday, Feb. 14, the Austin Piazzolla Quintet performs En Tango Mi Valentino. Shows are at 5:45 and 8:15 nightly. $145 per person, including dinner and drinks. lex18avl.com

• Even if you’re going it alone, you won’t feel left out at Give Yourself to Love: A Levity Event. DJ Morphonic “seeks to make the dance experience one of transformational self-expression and a lot of good old fun,” according to show info. The evening, at New Mountain, also includes a group altar creation, chocolates and elixirs from Spectrum Nectars and self-love workshops. Sunday, Feb. 14, at 8 p.m. Free. newmountainavl.com

• Local country band Hearts Gone South promises “a night of heartache, heartbreak and sweet, sweet love songs” at The Crow and Quill. The Honky-Tonk Heart Breaker Show, on Sunday, Feb. 14, starts at 8:30 p.m. “So whether you want to cry in your bourbon or dance with your sweetie,” says the band, this “is where you wanna be for a night of honky-tonk hoopty-doo.” $5-$10 suggested donation. thecrowandquill.com

For more Valentine’s Day events, visit Clubland, Calendar and mountainx.com.

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About Alli Marshall
Alli Marshall is the arts section editor at Mountain Xpress. She's lived in Asheville for more than 20 years and loves live music, visual art, fiction and friendly dogs. Alli is the winner of the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the author of the novel "How to Talk to Rockstars," published by Logosophia Books. Follow me @alli_marshall

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