Wednesday, Dec. 13
His documentary The Problem with Apu—in which he confronts the stereotypical portrayal of Indians on The Simpsons—has brought him much-deserved attention lately, but Hari Kondabolu has been one of comedy's most astute minds for years. Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie Ave., 503-234-9694, aladdin-theater.com. 9 pm. $20 advance, $25 day of show. All ages.
Give Guide Happy Hour: Natasha Kmeto
Support Portland's nonprofits while enjoying cheap drinks and hot beats. Electro-soul queen Natasha Kmeto closes out Give Guide's happy-hour series with a DJ set that's sure to be pure fire. White Owl Social Club, 1305 SE 8th Ave., 503-236-9672, whiteowlsocialclub.com. 5 pm. Free. 21+.
Thursday, Dec. 14
As hip-hop enters middle-age, Jay-Z has established himself as the first truly huge "legacy rapper." While this year's 4:44 is his most praised album in ages, this mega-sized tour is really about celebrating the full breadth of his storied career. Moda Center, 1 N Center Court St., 503-235-8771, rosequarter.com. 8 pm. $27-$138. All ages. See Top 5.
Willamette Week Holiday Market
Still shirking the shopping? We've got your back with a huge holiday market full of local artisans, distilleries, wineries and snack makers. A cocktail bar and samples from people like New Deal Distillery and Portland Cider Co. are guaranteed to keep your cockles warm while you buy thoughtful things you can pretend you special-ordered. District East, 2305 SE 9th Ave., 503-278-7349, districteastpdx.com. 5-9 pm. Free.
Friday, Dec. 15
When Tamar Berk and Steven Denekas set out to make an authentic, '70s-style rock opera, they didn't cut any corners—they even convinced Quadrophenia engineer Ron Nevison to produce it. The resulting Dawn of Paradise is the most ambitious record to come out of Portland…maybe ever. Tonic Lounge, 3100 NE Sandy Blvd., 503-271-8464, toniclounge.com. 8 pm. $8. 21+. See feature on page 29.
After three Netflix specials and several tours, the sassiness of John Mulaney's standup has almost eclipsed that of all those Stefon sketches he wrote for SNL. After a three-month run last spring, Mulaney is reviving his Kid Gorgeous tour, which skipped Portland the last time around. Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway, portland5.com. 7 pm. $25-$35.
Saturday, Dec. 16
Pedro the Lion
With his original band, slowcore legends Pedro the Lion, beloved songwriter David Bazan chronicled the dark truths behind traditional American institutions with uncompromising honesty. This three-night stand prefaces a full-on reunion tour that'll kick off next year. Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi Ave.,
503-288-3895, mississippistudios.com. 8 pm. Sold out. 21+. Through Dec. 18.
10 Barrel in the Pearl knows how to throw a holiday party: Five different special versions of Whitney Burnside's house Pearl IPA from triple to session to CDA to hazy, a Pearl Jam cover band on the heated rooftop patio, and free apps with cover charge. Dress nice. It's a holiday. 10 Barrel, 1411 NW Flanders St, 503-224-1700, 10barrel.com. 7 pm-midnight. $10 advance tickets.
Sunday, Dec. 17
Some of the best mixers and shakers in Portland cocktails will be competing to make the best nog in town—folk from spots like Rum Club, Expatriate and Angel Face—with additional gin nog from the Shipwreck cocktail pop-up. Nightwood, 2218 NE Broadway, 4-7 pm. $30 advance tix at e.sparxo.com/4th-Annual-PDX-Nog-Off.
Bike Farm, the city's raddest bike collective and educational bike shop, is hosting dozens of local vendors that sell handmade, bike related gifts. There'll be bike bags, smartphone mounts for handlebars and lots of hand-knit helmet warmers, because the bike commuter in your life is probably perpetually cold this time of year. Bike Farm, 1810 NE 1st Ave., bikecraftpdx.com. 11 am-5 pm. Starts Friday. Free entry.
Monday, Dec. 18
Bhuna Indian Pop-Up
A pop-up that may continue on Mondays on the regular, Culmination will host Kashmir-born chef Deepak Kaul's Indian soul food stylings from Goan pork vindaloo to Kashmiri lamb to eggplant and collard greens. Food's à la carte. Just show up and eat. Culmination Brewing, 2117 NE Oregon St., 971-254-9114, culminationbrewing.com. 4-8 pm.
Nope, not the George Clooney one—its Russian predecessor that's based off of the same novel about an ill-fated space station orbiting an ocean planet. It's more poetic and thought-provoking than every Black Mirror episode combined. NW Film Center, 1219 SW Park Ave., nwfilmcenter.org. 7 pm. $9.
Tuesday, Dec. 19
A Christmas Carol
It might be one of many around Portland, but the Portland Playhouse version of A Christmas Carol is not only full of Yuletide cheer, it's also just an impeccably produced play that balances traditional sensibilities with inventive staging. Hampton Opera Center, 221 SE Caruthers St., portlandplayhouse.org. 7 pm Tuesday-Sunday, through Dec. 30. $34-$59.