If last week's smattering of sun hinted that spring is just around the corner, this weekend is the proof -- that magical time of the year when Oakland empties and students from Carnegie Mellon (March 4), Pitt (March 6), Chatham (March 6) and Carlow (March 7) hear the call of spring break.
Three things to keep in mind for the days before break begins: First, you probably have lots of assignments due, and need to unwind. Second, you're feeling stingy -- Cancun's cheap but it's not free. Third, Weird Paul has read your mind.
On Thu., March 3, at Howlers Coyote Café, Pittsburgh's master of comedic rock will offer a variety of entertainments -- even a chance at rock glory -- for a mere 99 cents.
In addition to Weird Paul (who's taking requests), audience members will be invited onstage for a six-string duel against the band's guitarist Ben Blanchard. The show features special guests Landmonster! (who will auction off a Casio keyboard), Greg Cislon, Scott Fry, Eric Donaldson, Read Connolly and Sick Ridiculous.
The show is 21 and over, and again, 99 cents won't put a noticeable dent in your tattoo budget or Senor Frog's fund.
If you're staying in town over break, the folks who brought October's multi-day VIA electronic-art and -music fest have you covered. VIA presents a special show on Wed., March 9, featuring Paris-based beat-maker Onra, with additional audio from Golden Ages, Discuss, Harry Lurker and Nicerec, and visuals from DI AY and Laurie Trok & Andres Ortiz-errari.
The whole thing happens at the Lawrenceville storefront location of 720 Music, Clothing & Café (4405 Butler St.) from 7:30 p.m.-midnight. It's 18 and over; tickets are $12. For more information, visit www.via-pgh.com.
Speaking of upcoming events, keep an eye peeled for these local record-release shows: Electronic pop from Ennui (March 18 at Brillobox, with Michael Ice and Gangwish); Sagas (March 19th at the Shop, with Pete Fosco, Dan Peck Trio, Hunted Creatures and Inez Lightfoot); and Bare Branches (March 27, at Smiling Moose).