We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.


L.A. rapper Coolio may send out contradictory lyrical messages regarding the merits of the gun-toting, foul-mouthed, crack-smoking lifestyle he once led, but there’s nothing ambiguous about his singular musical approach. With smooth R&B samples by the likes of Lakeside on “Fantastic Voyage” (from his ’94 debut It Takes a Thief) and from Stevie Wonder on “Gangsta’s Paradise” (from the current album of the same name), Coolio’s finest compositions combine standout pop-soul choruses with vivid streetlife tales and slogans. With the Roots and Brooklyn Funk Essentials at 7:30 p.m. at George Washington University’s Smith Center, 22nd & G Sts. NW. $20. (202) 994-7481. (Steve Kiviat)