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FEBRUARY 11

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It’s hard to nail down exactly what kind of music Bela Fleck & the Flecktones play. Some music stores lump them in with bluegrass, referring to the roots of some earlier recordings (see Drive) and assuming that any banjo playing (Bela’s main instrument) must reside there. But as the band’s most recent album, 1996’s two-disc Live Art, makes clear, its musical adventures range from jazz to hiphop to world music to soul to rock to classical, and I’m probably forgetting a few other genres along the way. (Live Art alone features jams by such guests as Branford Marsalis, Chick Corea, and Bruce Hornsby.) Admittedly, it took a while after being introduced to Fleck & Co. for me to get hooked on this primarily instrumental outfit that does anything but lull you to sleep. Visit tonight’s show just to see the “drumitar,” the drum-guitar contraption played by the enigmatically named band member Future Man. And who can ignore a band that wrote a song called “UFO Tofu”—a palindrome in both its title and its score? With Jeff Coffin at 9:30 p.m. (the 8 p.m. show is sold out) at the Birchmere, 3701 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria. $22.50. (703) 549-7500. (Louis Jacobson)