Mellow folk duo Mandolin Orange does indeed rely on that particular instrument to compose its lush ballads, but just because the group’s name is a bit on the nose, it doesn’t mean its music is. To start, Andrew Marlin and Emily Frantz’s delicate picking immediately draws your ear in, creating a wall of sound so large it’s hard to believe only two instruments are creating it. The group’s songs also offer a bit more self-reflection: On “Old Ties and Companions,” from their latest album, Such Jubilee, Marlin sings, “Old man, give me endless time/Never let these ties sever,” begging for more moments to hold on to, even as time continues to pass. Read more >>> Mandolin Orange performs with Leif Vollebekk at 8:30 p.m. at the Hamilton, 600 F St. NW. $15–$20. (202) 787-1000. thehamiltondc.com. (Caroline Jones)
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has long hosted a weekly farmers market during the day. Beginning tonight, they’re also doing a monthly “night market.” From 5 to 8 p.m. on the third Friday of the month, local farmers will sell their wares alongside vendors from Union Kitchen and food trucks. There will also be live music, so feel free to picnic on the National Mall. The market will last through October. USDA Farmers Market Night, 12th Street and Independence Avenue SW. usda.gov/farmersmarket. (Jessica Sidman)
OH AND ALSO
Friday: Electronic saxophonists Philip White and Chris Pitsiokos perform a unique show at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center with Marko Timlin, the Shouts from the Sea, and Music from the Film. 9 p.m. at 8230 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring. $10.
Friday: The 20th annual Mary Lou Williams Jazz Festival begins tonight at the Kennedy Center with performances by drummer Sylvia Cuenca, trumpeter Ingrid Jensen, and pianist Michele Rosewoman. 7 p.m. at 2700 F St. NW. $45.
Friday: Local soul act Newt Junior plays the Black Cat’s main stage with Yo No Say, Brian Rapp and Natureboi, and Navi. 9 p.m. at 1811 14th St. NW. $12.
Saturday: Here is the right way to look at NASCAR: This is an enthusiasm some people share. Here is the wrong way to look at NASCAR: This is a value-set my opponents don’t understand. Ann-Marie VanTassell knows the right way to look at NASCAR. Like fellow photographer Alec Soth, she captures the dignity that is due to subjects simply for being individual people. With her show at Pleasant Plains Workshop, where she is a resident artist, VanTassell means to show viewers that the values shared by NASCAR fans are more powerful than politicos could guess. Read more >>> The exhibition is on view Thursdays and Fridays 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturdays 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., to May 31, at Pleasant Plains Workshop, 2608 Georgia Ave. NW. Free. pleasantplainsworkshop.com.
Saturday: The Arthur M. Sackler Gallery opens Darren Waterston‘s “Filthy Lucre,” a reimagining of James McNeill Whistler‘s Peacock Room. Read more in our Summer Entertainment Guide. 10 a.m. at 1050 Independence Ave. SW. Free.
Saturday: Washington Performing Arts presents a performance by kamancheh player Kayhan Kalhor and Grammy-nominated tabla virtuoso Sandeep Das at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue. 8 p.m. at 600 I St. NW. $30.
Sunday: Nigerian singer, saxophonist, and bandleader Lágbájá always performs wearing a mask. Singing largely in Yoruba and English, Lágbájá periodically switches to his horn and adds a jazzier tone to the Afrobeat-rooted dance rhythms of his band’s keyboards, bass, and drums. Even if you can’t follow every lyrical reference, the skillfully played music and cleverly modulated call and response vocals should get your body swaying in time. Read more >>> Lágbájá performs at 8 p.m. at the Howard Theatre, 620 T St. NW. $25–$45. (202) 803-2899. thehowardtheatre.com.
Sunday: Contemporary composer Philip Glass chronicles his career in his new memoir, Words Without Music. He reads from the book and discusses it with NPR Music’s Bob Boilen at the Sidwell Friends Meeting House. 1 p.m. at 3825 Wisconsin Ave. NW. Free.
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