Fri. March 18 -- The Slake readings barrel onward, this time with the mighty (and mighty sleepy) poet John Tottenham, Van Halen victim and hepatitis warrior John Albert, pube detective Sam Slovick and surfer-painter Sandow Birk. Editors Joe Donnelly and Laurie Ochoa will also be around to slake your curiosity about the antique mode of communication once called writing. At Fix Coffee Co., 2100 Echo Park Ave., Echo Park 90026; 8pm; free; beer & wine.
Fri.-Sat. March 18-20 -- The Pharoah Sanders Quartet provides one of the last remaining links to Coltrane, in a less assaultive mood than in the days of '65. At Catalina Bar & Grill, 6725 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood 90028; 8 & 10pm; $22-$30; (323) 466-2210; www.catalinajazzclub.com.
Sat. March 19 -- LATE ADD: Quarteto Nuevo (Christopher Garcia, Kenton Youngstrom, Damon Zick, Jacob Szekely) lay down their soothing, intelligent impressions of various world musics in an appropriate setting. At First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica, 1220 Second St., Santa Monica 9040; 7pm; $15 entry also scores you a copy of their new CD!
Sat. March 19 -- Tool drummer Danny Carey and friends Lance Morrison, John Ziegler and Kirk Covington groove & slosh like nobody's bidness in Volto. Also: Gryphon Labs, a spinoff of Zappa Plays Zappa featuring omni-songwriter Pete Griffin with drummer Joe Travers and guitarist Jamie Kime. At Central SAPC (formerly 14 Below), 1348 14th St., Santa Monica 90404; doors 8pm; $20; 21+; www.centralsapc.com.
Sat. March 19 -- I just about dropped my teeth when I saw who's in the supergroup Go Home: eight-string guitarist Charlie Hunter, clarinet mastermind Ben Goldberg (pictured), saxist Ellery Eskelin and drummer Scott Amendola. It will groove and trip weirdly. At McCabe’s, 3101 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica 90405; 8pm; $22.50; (310) 828-4497; www.mccabes.com.
Sat. March 19 -- Last-minute add: Motoko Honda, Goh Kurosawa w/ Mon David and a bunch more TBA are putting together an ad hoc benefit for the Japanese tsunami victims. Honda's dynamically emotional piano abstractions provide a damn good excuse to pitch in. At the Blue Whale on the third floor of Weller Court Plaza, south of East First Street between South Los Angeles Street and South San Pedro Street, Little Tokyo 90012; 4-8pm; give what you can; validated parking underneath on Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Sun. March 20 -- On a different benefit tip, Nick Mancini & Otmaro Ruiz, the hair-raising original vibes-piano duo, rake clams on behalf of the Adams District After 'Cool Theater Program. Also with The Harvard-Westlake Jazz Band. At 24th Street Theater, 1117 W. 24th St., Los Angeles 90007; 4pm; $20.
Sun. March 20 -- Last benefit this week, I swear: SASSAS, which presents so many outstanding outmusic events, is having a listening party with "sound and music shared by well-known and emerging" visual artists, this time including Julian Hoeber (sculpture above), Anthony Pearson and Jennifer West. It's at Pearson's Escher-GuneWardena-designed home, and includes dinner, drinks and arty company. If the $125 per person (plus whatever else you want to kick in) seems like a lot, consider that that's what you'd drop for dinner and a show at Catalina's. RSVP at sassas.org.
Wed. March 23 -- Great musicians tossing every kind of music/noise in a cannibal pot and lighting the fire with visuals? Onibaba feature bassist-leader Daren Burns along with windman Vinny Golia, trombonist George McMullen, guitarist Scott Collins, drummer Craig Bunch and video cruncher Kio Griffith. At the Blue Whale on the third floor of Weller Court Plaza, south of East First Street between South Los Angeles Street and South San Pedro Street, Little Tokyo 90012; 9pm-midnight; $10; validated parking underneath on Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Wed. March 23 -- Chris Poland slammed his hand in a guitar door when he was a kid, and the damage made him slip around a guitar fretboard differently than anyone else, as discoverable in his early Megadeth work and for many years now in his fusion trio, Ohm, with Robert Pagliari on bass and the soul-groovin' Kofi Baker (Ginger's son) on drums. At the Baked Potato, 3787 Cahuenga Blvd. West, Studio City 91604; 9:30 & 11:30pm; $20; (818) 980-1615; www.thebakedpotato.com.
Thurs. March 24 -- The abovementioned Burns and Griffith, along with trance guitarist Matt Piper and windman Casey Anderson, improvise till nirvana arrives. I'm calling them Burns-Piper-Anderson at the Gates of Dawn. At Balconi Coffee Co., 11301 W. Olympic Blvd. #124, West L.A. 90064; 8pm; free; (310) 906-0267.
Thurs.-Fri. March 24-25 -- Terry Bozzio isn't just the 1980 new-wave drummer behind the Tupperware in Missing Persons; he's an incredible technical skinsman (check his Zappa résumé) and a skillful modern composer, here fusionizing in The Bozzio-Machacek-Lunn Trio with guitarist Alex Machacek and bassist Doug Lunn. At the Baked Potato, 3787 Cahuenga Blvd. West, Studio City 91604; 9:30 & 11:30pm; $20; (818) 980-1615; www.thebakedpotato.com.
Thurs.-Sun. March 24-27 -- Christian McBride & Inside Straight are the super bassist with saxist Steve Wilson, drummer Carl Allen, vibesman Warren Wolf and pianist Peter Martin. McBride can and does play just about anything, not just jazz. At Catalina Bar & Grill, 6725 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood 90028; 8 & 10pm; $22-$35; (323) 466-2210; www.catalinajazzclub.com.