When I was 14 and getting garbage grades, my school-appointed “mentor” gave me an English Beat CD. That’s an unusual choice for get-your-life-on-track tunes. Still, this middle-aged guy knew what he was doing. That’s because, at the risk of angering New Jersey, British ska is always better than the stateside equivalent. Coming out of a 1970s scene obsessed with horns and Jamaica, The English Beat’s “2 Tone” revival scene was all about racial harmony and disliking Margaret Thatcher. Read more >>> The English Beat performs at 7 p.m. at the 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. $25. (202) 265-0930. 930.com. (Will Sommer)


Black’s Bar & Kitchen is hosting an all-day “throwback” happy hour today with menu items dating back to the day it opened. Look out for 50 cent wings, $5 shrimp quesadillas, and two-for-one oyster and raw bar offerings. Glasses of wine go for $5, draft beers are $4, and vodka martinis are $6. Black’s Bar & Kitchen, 7750 Woodmont Ave., Bethesda. (301) 652-5525. blacksbarandkitchen.com(Jessica Sidman)


Head south to Theater on the Run, where WSC Avant Bard begins performances of Holiday Memories, a seasonal drama based on a short story by Truman Capote. 7:30 p.m. at 3700 South Four Mile Drive, Arlington. Pay what you can.

Afrofuturist artist Sinkane brings his funky live performance to the Black Cat Backstage. He’s joined by opening act Steven A. Clark. 7:30 p.m. at 1811 14th St. NW. $15.

Before the turkey and sides get laid out on the table tomorrow, welcome Thanksgiving at the Howard Theatre with a lively go-go performance featuring We Are the Fix, DJ Big John, and Team Familiar.

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