The printed word and the communities it creates lead the week with the opening of the Wisconsin Book Festival. The calendar also includes: a talk by David Carter; and, live music by The Most Supreme Republic, The Butthole Surfers, WHY?, Rebelution, The Duke Ellington Orchestra, Pepper with illScarlett, Ghostland Observatory, Portugal. The Man, and Koo Koo Kanga Roo.
BIRTHDAYS: Actress Kate Winslet, 1975.
UW Memorial Union's Fredric March Play Circle, 7 pm
The man who wrote the book on the Stonewall gay-rights riots talks about "Stonewall: Myth, History & Symbol."
The Most Serene Republic
High Noon Saloon, 8 pm
Though they were the first band signed to the Arts & Crafts label that wasn't directly linked to Broken Social Scene, they were quick to enlist Scene producer David Newfeld for their 2009 release ...And the Ever Expanding Universe, which features more than a hint of the Canadian supergroup's style. With Grand Archives and Timber Timbre.
BIRTHDAYS: Actress Elizabeth Shue, 1963.
The Butthole Surfers
Barrymore Theatre, 7:30 pm
With a name and a sound that spit in the face of both the record industry and authority figures everywhere, the Surfers were an instant hit among both old-school punks and up-and-coming grunge stars when they burst onto the scene in the early '80s. Tonight's show features the 1983 lineup of the band, or something quite close. With Psychic Ills.
UW Memorial Union Rathskeller, 8:30 pm
After discovering a four-track in a synagogue basement and striking up a friendship with MC Doseone at the 1997 Scribble Jam, WHY? frontman Yoni Wolf knew he had the right ingredients for a band blending hip-hop with folk and jangly guitar-rock. Tonight they'll highlight Eskimo Snow, one of the week's most talked-albums on Pitchfork.com. With Au and Dark Dark Dark.
NOTEWORTHY: Palestinian gunmen hijack the Achille Lauro cruise ship, 1985.
BIRTHDAYS: Grammy-winning vocalist Toni Braxton and Radiohead's Thom Yorke, 1968.
Wisconsin Book Festival
Through Oct. 11
The annual event is packed with readings, lectures, discussions, workshops and children's events. Highlights of the first two days include artists Barbara Manger and Janine Smith plus photographer Lewis Koch (Wednesday, Chazen Museum of Art, 5:30 pm), poets Andrea Sorby and Mark Kraushaar (Wednesday, Avol's, 8 pm), Packers chronicler Phil Hanrahan (Thursday, Orpheum, 5:30 pm) and novelist Lorrie Moore and memoirist Michael Perry (Thursday, Orpheum, 7:30 pm). See articles here and here.
Annex, 8 pm
Cali reggae quartet Rebelution joins Rochester, N.Y.-based roots-reggae group Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad and Passafire, a band that blends reggae and -- surprisingly enough -- bluegrass.
The Duke Ellington Orchestra
Stoughton Opera House, 7:30 pm
Sir Duke is gone, but his gloriousness lives on thanks to the ensemble that bears his name. This is seriously fine American music.
High Noon Saloon, 8 pm
Canadian quartet illScarlett kicks things off with some ska punk that's got both island flavor and surf-rock attitude. Headliner Pepper blows the conventions of reggae rock out of the water with a heaviness that's undoubtedly made fans out of both Ozzy Osbourne and Eddie Vedder. Also playing: Iration.
Barrymore Theatre, 8 pm
Funk, soul, electro and rock bump and grind when the two guys known as Ghostland Observatory get together. They visit Madison from Austin to play songs from their 2008 release, Robotqiue Majestique, and perhaps some new tunes as well. DJ Lord opens.
Portugal. The Man
Majestic Theatre, 8:30 pm
The experimental group's been getting tons of attention from Rolling Stone for their new album, The Satanic Satanist, which augments a classic-rock sound with a deep appreciation of Britpop and disco-style grooves. With Drug Rug and Hockey.
Koo Koo Kanga Roo
Frequency, 9 pm
The zany Minnesota synthpop duo got the entire Frequency crowd dancing with a giant parachute last time they played the venue. If the buzz is true, this visit is likely to be at least twice as wacky. With the Big Payback, Scratch Track, Stereo Color and Mr. Frizo.