Fri.-Sat. Dec. 14-15 -- The Curators will go down easy with a mix of ear-friendly musicians from two or three jazz generations: guitarist Anthony Wilson (son o' Gerald), organist Larry Goldings (first call for everybody in town), bassist Kaveh Rastegar (Kneebody), drummer Barbara Gruska, violinist Eva Scow and more. At the Blue Whale on the third level 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; parking $5 underneath off Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Sun. Dec. 16 -- Carl Randall, the swinging, masculine tenor saxist with Elliott Caine, the Gerald Wilson Orchestra, his own group and so many others, passed away suddenly December 3, and an all-star benefit for his expenses will be held today. Hear Mr. Randall stroke a ballad here; he comes in after the 5-minute mark. More details here. At Barbara Morrison's Performing Arts Center, 4305 Degnan Blvd., Suite 101, Leimert Park 90008; noon-5pm; give what you can.
Sun. Dec. 16 -- I dunno any of the eight metal bands performing tonight, but they'll be pushed to extraordinary heights by the responsibility of providing the soundtrack for the Mayan Final Countdown Party, celebrating the imminent end of time 12/21. Talking about Syrebris, Vesterian, Depths of Misery and their apocalyptic pals. At Airliner Club, 2419 Broadway, Lincoln Heights 90031; 7:30pm; $5; 21+; (323) 221-0771.
Wed. Dec. 19 -- Josh Nelson, a post-traditional pianist who could go national, hosts a Night of the Composers with Philip Dizack, Walter Smith II, Chris Dingman, Dave Robaire and Zach Harmon. At the Blue Whale on the third level 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; parking $5 underneath off Second Street at the sign of the P in a circle; (213) 620-0908; www.bluewhalemusic.com.
Thurs. Dec. 20 -- The Power of the Riff fest stacks the heaviness deep with raspnasty tru rok from High on Fire (pictured; welcome back, Matt), rumble drones from Sunn O))), latter-day hard rock from Corrosion of Conformity, and support from Dead in the Dirt, Void Ov Voices, Black Breath. At (appropriately on this, the last full day of our age) the Mayan Theater, 1038 S. Hill St., downtown 90015; 6pm; $44; www.livenation.com.
Thurs. Dec. 20 -- Take a Scorpions Klaus Meine vocal sound-alike and plunk him in a symphonic pagan-metal fantasyland, and you got Sonata Arctica. More interesting to me are tech-shredders Arsis, who've just dropped a surprisingly commercial (and unsurprisingly kick-ass) new EP. Plus Kobra & the Lotus, Heralds of the Swords, Seclorum, more. At the Whisky, 8901 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood 90069; doors 7pm; $20; all ages; www.whiskyagogo.com; (310) 652-4202.
Thurs. Dec. 20 -- Caleb Quaye played guitar on most Elton John albums from the beginning, by way of the former boss of both, Long John Baldry; he also had a pretty good group called Hookfoot around '71, not to mention stints with Pete Townshend and Hall & Oates. Always a jazzy dude, he (with his band the Faculty) is mining a musicianly fusion vein these days. At Catalina Bar & Grill, 6725 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood 90028; 8:30pm; $15; (323) 466-2210; www.catalinajazzclub.com.
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A year ago, recognizing that the main purpose of television is to help you sleep, Congress enacted a law prohibiting commercials from being louder than the programs in which they are embedded. That law, the CALM (Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation) Act, went into effect December 13. Nothing will change unless you speak up, so the next time you're slammed awake by a commercial for loan sharks or boner pills, COMPLAIN HERE. Select the second-to-last option (Broadcast) on the first page, and the last option (Loud Commercials) on the second page. On the third page, be specific about the cable system, the channel, the advertiser and the time. Bookmark this FCC complaint site, cuz you'll be needing it. (You can use it against phone solicitors and other stuff, too.) Thank you, reader. And thank you, California Representative Anna Eshoo (D-Silicon Valley), the bill's sponsor.