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The Sweet Heaven Kings’ annual show at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage incorporates Christmas music and gospel standards, but its renditions won’t be as schmaltzy as most of the drivel you’ll hear on 24-hour holiday music radio. This 16-member brass, percussion, and vocal ensemble from Anacostia’s United House of Prayer for All People layers note-stretching singing over swinging New Orleans-inspired horns and drumming. While the group can play a finger-snapping, laidback jazzy take on “The Christmas Song,” its vocalists and trombonists really let go on more church-inspired cuts like “O Holy Night” and Donnie Hathaway’s “This Christmas.” Read more >>> Sweet Heaven Kings perform at 6 p.m. at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, 2700 F St. NW. Free. (202) 467-4600. kennedy-center.org. (Steve Kiviat)
City Paper’s 4th annual Bacon & Bourbon: A Whiskey Festival is tonight at the Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain. Area restaurants like The Pig, Jack Rose Dining Saloon, and The BBQ Joint will serve bacon dishes to pair with pours of whiskey from distilleries like Catoctin Creek, Virginia Distillery Co., Four Roses, and Michter’s. Regular tickets (7 p.m. entry) include unlimited tastings of whiskeys and dishes while VIP tickets (6 p.m. entry) grant attendees access to a VIP lounge with rare whiskeys and other perks. The event runs from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain, 2801 16th St. NW. (Laura Hayes)
OH AND ALSO
Olivia Mancini and the Mates headline an evening of local folk rock at the Black Cat Backstage featuring sets from Run Come See and Handsome Hound. 7:30 p.m. at 1811 14th St. NW. $10.
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