Rock This Town

SAT 2/12
Old-school proms in movies always look more fun than the modern variety. In the ’50s, local bands played their own slow-dance ballads and high-energy rock. Today, DJs handle most of the musical duties, and the few remaining live bands are usually soulless cover acts. Back then, creative choreography ruled, as depicted in shots of saddle-shoed lasses going airborne. Now, every sweat-soaked, bump-and-grind move seems to come from strip clubs or sex-ed pamphlets. Nostalgic for the black-and-white era, Davey’s Uptown (3402 Main) gets super-McFly Saturday, bringing switchblade sounds and poodle-skirt style back to the punk-informed future. Stocked with five greased-lightning groups, the Rockabilly Prom 2 roster includes Tulsa-based ‘tonkabilly twangers the Painkillers and local rebels the Rumblejetts and the Silvermen. A pre-prom catered banquet opens at 9 p.m., and the stage show starts at 10:30, ensuring that all the mommy’s little monsters who attend the Social Distortion gig earlier that evening at the Beaumont Club (4050 Pennsylvania) can rockabilly around the clock. (Social D stub holders get half off the $10 ticket price.) Appropriate attire is a must, and the sharpest-dressed T-Birds and Pink Ladies compete for prom king and queen. For more information, call 816-838-2893. — Andrew Miller

Ear Factor
Let the sax and violins begin.

The classically trained area musicians in NewEar perform a unique and challenging style of chamber music that’s anything but easy listening. This weekend, the eccentric ensemble employs strings, horns, piano and percussion to create experimental soundscapes by a global array of contemporary composers, including Hanspeter Kyburz of Germany and France’s Bruno Mantovani. Titled Cellular, the concert presents five works that can be, the group claims, assimilated by “our ears, our brains, our very cells.” Composer Craig Weston, whose “Aix” is on the bill, writes that his piece contains an “intensive burst of swirling polyrhythmic energy that leaps forth from the ensemble with an almost tantric quality.” Exactly. The first performance is at 8 p.m. Saturday at Regnier Hall Auditorium (12600 Quivira in Overland Park on the University of Kansas Edwards Campus). At 5 p.m. Sunday, the group encores at Unity Temple on the Plaza (707 West 47th Street). Admission to both shows is $18 for adults, $8 for students. For details, call 816-235-6222. — Michael Vennard

Access Accepted
KC’s black communities get online.

One local group is taking advantage of African-American History Month by looking to the future. Starting Sunday, the Black Family Technology Awareness Association of Kansas City sponsors a week of programs designed to close the digital divide between the tech-rich American mainstream and black communities, where only 24.7 percent of households have Internet access. Examining the realms of business, education, health care, church and family, this staggering and thorough project aims to open opportunities for technological advancement on just about every level. All events are open to the public, and each day brings a different program in a new location, so, um, check the association’s Web site at Or call 816-743-9981. — Jason Harper

Let’s Get It On

MON 2/14
We’ve been wooed by that guy who chooses the best tunes on the jukebox — and that guy singing karaoke, that guy playing air guitar. Anyway, our point is that music is instrumental (ha) to making out. Chez Charlie’s (3809 Broadway, 816-753-9247) celebrates that fact at 10 p.m. Monday, when patrons can bring a CD or tape with 15 minutes of their best mood music for prizes — and possibly some action? — Annie Fischer