Smart Bets

The Baker Family

Former Asheville musicians The Baker Family (now based in Austin, Texas — but still Asheville locals in their hearts, they assure us) return to the Grey Eagle on Saturday, Feb. 19. The Bakers say they "witnessed a exceedingly awesome turnout and response last year" and "feel like there's a lot to catch up on between the Baker Family and our birth city." Doc Aquatic and John Wilkes Booth & His Black Toothe also perform. 9 p.m., $6.

Sweet Plantain

"Artfully fusing the Western classical traditions in which they were trained with the hip-hop, jazz improv, and Latin rhythms on which they were raised, Sweet Plantain showcases the rhythmic vitality of Latin music." Need to know more about this multi-cultural string quartet? Check them out at Diana Wortham Theatre on Saturday, Feb. 19. 8 p.m., $30, $28 seniors, $25 students, $12 children.

Spiritual Rez

Shortly after playing the Matterhorn (a club in Stowe, Vt., not the Matterhorn), Boston-based horn-driven reggae-funk-jam band Spiritual Rez comes to the Emerald Lounge for a Saturday, Feb. 19 show. 10:30 p.m., $8. According to the six-piece group's profile, they have "tirelessly toured the country promoting positive music and attitude."


The Tony-winning uber-'90s musical RENT is based on the Puccini opera La Bohème in which a group of young bohemians live (and die of tuberculosis) in the Latin Quarter of Paris during the 1840s. Trade bohemians for starving artists, Paris for New York's Alphabet City and TB for HIV/AIDS, and you've got RENT. Asheville Community Theatre stages the Broadway show From Friday, Feb. 18 through Sunday, March 6. Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m.; Sundays at 2:30 p.m. $12/$19/$22.

Castell Photography opening

Castell Photography’s newest exhibition, Studies, opens on Friday, Feb. 18 with a 5-8 p.m. artist reception. Featured artists are photographer Honour Hiers from Asheville (who collects and photographs botanical specimens) and Wanrudee Buranakorn from Wisconsin (who is originally from Thailand and whose images "express desire and melancholy as intimacy wanes"). The show remains on display through March 26.

Hands on the Freedom Plow

Malaprop's celebrates Black History Month with Hands on the Freedom Plow: Personal Accounts by Women in SNCC. (SNCC, The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, was a principal organization of the Civil Rights Movement during the 1960s). Editor Faith Holsaert will read from the new anthology on Saturday, Feb. 19 at 3 p.m. Free.


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