From “Barely Breathing” to Spring Awakening to ... the Smiths? Nearly 20 years after he shot onto the pop charts and into the throbbing hearts of Gen Xers of both sexes, singer-songwriter Duncan Sheik’s career has traversed radio airwaves and the boards of Broadway. All that, and his biggest stroke of genius may very well be last year’s Covers 80s, a beautifully somber and nostalgic interpretation of the songs comprising the gestalt of Sheik’s (and much of his audience’s) formative years. – Melanie Haupt
Meshell Ndegeocello remains as hard to pin down as her surname is to pronounce. Of late, the singer/bassist/poet/activist has honored her musical heroes. She recently probed the work of Gil Scott-Heron, covering his catalog in live shows and discussing his legacy at South by Southwest. Her new muse is High Priestess of Soul, Nina Simone, to whom an album of interpretations, Pour Une Âme Souveraine (For a Sovereign Soul), is dedicated. Two shows, 7 & 9:30pm. – Thomas Fawcett
Georgian pop theatricals outside, followed by local grit-pop duets inside.
Mohawk, 912 Red River
7PM, Windsor Park Branch Library, 5833 Westminster
The South Austin Popular Culture Center presents this "visual history through T-shirts," chronicling the rise and fall of bands and venues, charting that storied sequence across the public strata of the cotton upper-body garments once relegated to underwear but now (for decades, now) more akin to personal billboards of opinion and taste. Through Dec. 23.
South Austin Popular Culture Center, 1516-B S. Lamar, 512/440-8318
This group show in the terrific gallery just off South First features works by Regina Allen, Adrian Landon Brooks, Cheryl Finfrock,
D.C. Ice, Megan Kimber, Amy Kligman, Amy Rice,
Jeffrey Swanson, and Matthew Winters. Through Dec. 22.
grayDUCK Gallery, 2213 E. Cesar Chavez, 512/826-5334
Need something Austin-y (art, jewelry, prints, clothing, etc., whatnot, and then some) for a loved one this year? More than 125 artists and artisans will help you with your gifting conundrums. Special events occur throughout the month of December, so shop early and often. Through Dec. 24, 10am-10pm, everyday. Free.
The Marchesa Hall & Theatre, 6406 N. I-35, 454-2000
Features an exhibition by artist Paul Pfeiffer and a display of James Naismith's 1891 document the Original Rules of Basketball. You won't want to miss this in-depth and historical look into the sport of basketball. Runs through Jan. 13, 2013.
The Blanton Museum of Art, 200 E. Martin Luther King Jr., 512/471-7324
Guess who's coming to WTF? Rebecca and Stanley Roy must be quaking in their figgy pudding knowing that Silky Shoemaker, Little Stolen Moments, Mitzy Myers, and Russell Reed are headed back to town for this magical baconator weekend of holiday hullaballoo. Thu.-Sat., Dec. 13-15, 8:30pm. $12.
ND Austin, 501 N. I-35, 512/485-3001
Bike with the butchie babes and betties every Tuesday. Contact for route info. Tuesdays, 7pm. Free.
Q Austin, 3408 West Ave., 845/642-7069
LGBT night at Lincoln Village's tastiest spot, with Lauren YellaStud and SDot SwaggaRipe, Gina DJgiiq Laughland, and bartender Alexis Wilder. Tuesdays, 9pm. Free.
MoJoe Room Bar & Grill, 6406 N. I-35 #1600, 512/206-4110