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The Short List

by: COURTESY OF Austin Young, Margaret Cho hits the stage – with a vengeance – at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall on Aug. 27.

PARTY

Vancouver Wine and Jazz

The 13th annual festival includes one of the best lineups in its history, with blues singer Mavis Staples, blues guitarist John Hammond, the Brubeck Brothers Quartet, fusion band Spyro Gyra, Savoy-Doucet Cajun Band, guitar virtuoso Stanley Jordan, jazz band The Rippingtons and saxophone superstar David Sanborn. The festival also includes more than 200 wines, fare from nine restaurants and work of 40 artists.

4-10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 27, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 28, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 29, Esther Short Park, downtown Vancouver, Wash., www.vancouverwinejazz.com, $50 3-day passes ($60 at gate), or $20 Friday, $25 Saturday and Sunday

Oregon State Fair

The music lineup is highlighted by ZZ Top (8 p.m., Aug. 27), Dierks Bentley (7 p.m., Aug. 28), Lifehouse (8 p.m., Sept. 2), Lynyrd Skynyrd (8 p.m., Sept. 3) and Cinderella/Queensryche (7 p.m., Sept. 4)

Opens 10 a.m. each day, Aug. 27-Sept. 6, Oregon State Fairgrounds, 2330 17th St. N.E., Salem, www.oregonstatefair.org, $20-$50 adults, $10-$30 seniors (65-over) and kids (ages 6-11), $11 adults and $3 seniors/kids at gate

STAGE

Live Wire Radio

The groups' season-opening event, the 'Swanky Show,' features singer/ actor Reggie Watts, experimental stage artist Dayna Hanson, the band Menomena, a rock musical and food cart mania with Brett Burmeister. Live Wire will be performing at the new Alberta Rose Theatre, but this annual show Aug. 21 takes place at the Gerding Theater.

8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 21, Gerding Theater, 128 N.W. 11th Ave., 503-427-8201, $18.75 general admission, $33.50 reserved

'Primal Compulsion'

Brody Theater puts on encore performances of its improvised erotic thriller, a comic ode to such films as 'Body Heat,' 'Fatal Attraction' and 'Basic Instinct.'

8 p.m. Aug. 28 and Sept. 4, The Brody Theater, 16 N.W. Broadway, www.brodytheater.com, $10, $7 students

Margaret Cho

The famed comedian's U.S. tour kicks off in Portland, supporting her new CD 'Cho Dependent,' which features three comedy songs and her trademark unbridled, no-holds-barred humor.

8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 26, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 S.W. Broadway, www.livenation.com, $28.50, $45

MUSIC

Edgefield Amphitheater concerts

The McMenamins' Concerts on the Lawn series has some great shows coming up: Crowded House, 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 26; Doobie Brothers, 6:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 27; Bob Dylan and His Band and John Mellencamp, 6 p.m. Aug. 28 (sold out), 6 p.m. Aug. 29;

Edgefield Amphitheater, 2126 S.W. Halsey St., Troutdale, www .edgefieldconcerts.com, www.ticket master.com (tickets); Crowded House, $39, $54; Doobie Brothers, $40, $74; Bob Dylan/John Mellencamp, $64.50

Roky road

Heads Up: As the most famous of the 13th Floor Elevators, Roky Erickson inspired primitive garage rockers, psychedelic noodlers and rabid punks, then wrestled with madness and drug abuse, yet lived to tell it all. If you value your street cred, do not miss him.

9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 22, Wonder Ballroom, 128 N.E. Russell St., www.wonderballroom.com, $22 advance, $25 day of show (21 and over)

Boo-tiful

Another heads up: Austin's Ghostland Observatory is a rockin' duo of pseudo-operatic voiced front man/guitarist Aaron Behrens and producer/keyboardist/drummer Thomas Turner. They play like manic buskers indifferent to whether you throw them coins or not.

9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 11, Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W. Burnside St., 503-225-0047, $20 advance, $25 day of show

MISC.

RiverFest

The third annual event includes the Freshwater Trust Portland Triathlon, Portland Audobon events, the festival itself, kayak tours and SOLV cleanup.

Thursday-Sunday, Aug. 19-22, Waterfront Park, Southwest Naito Parkway, www.portlandriverfest.org (check for event times)

Rumble at the Roseland

The Full Contact Fighting Federation's 53rd mixed martial arts card will also feature broadcast of UFC 118.

7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 28, Roseland Theater, 8 N.W. Sixth Ave., www.ticketwest.com, $29-$59 plus fees

Hood to Coast

About 12,000 runners take to the streets and roads for 197 miles between Mount Hood and Seaside in the annual event; drivers beware of runners.

Friday-Saturday, Aug. 27-28, Mount Hood to Seaside, www.hoodtocoast.com