Christian Parenti’s Tropic of Chaos: Climate Change and the New Geography of Violence chronicles “the most colossal set of events in human history: the catastrophic convergence of poverty, violence, and climate change.” In other words: beach book! A contributing editor at The Nation, Parenti is talking specifically about the mid-latitude belt of post-colonial regions, from Pakistan to Kenya to Brazil, that have borne the brunt of extreme climate crises. Drought and floods can cause everything from banditry to failed states. But Parenti’s exploration of how, say, a water shortage in equatorial Africa causes nomadic herdsmen to roam far afield—only to be met by a rival tribe that raids their animals and kills their men to protect fertile land—illustrates the domino effect extreme weather can cause anywhere in the world. (Christopher Porter) Parenti discusses his book at 7 p.m. at Politics & Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free.
Are you ready to tap into a spiritual stream of consciousness? Tickets are still available for Gang Gang Dance at the Rock & Roll Hotel tonight. In an earlier Arts Desk post, Marian McLaughlin dove into the trippy art rock group’s ritualism and its captivation with infinity. The band performs with Bubbles, DJ Xiao Yang, and DJ Jewd Law. 8:30 p.m. $15.
Vibraphonist and drummer Chuck Redd performs alongside bassist Nicki Parrott and jazz guitarist Bucky Pizzarelli on the Millennium Stage. Michael J. West calls Pizzarelli—-father of guitarist, vocalist, and radio show host John Pizzarelli—-a “living legend” who once toured with Benny Goodman‘s band, but likes to mix it up a little bit. 6 p.m. Free.
In stripped-down rock: Los Angeles three-piece Wet & Reckless played Arlington yesterday, and cross the border into D.C. to open for Bake Sale at Velvet Lounge tonight. 9 p.m. $8. 21+. And the super-simple garage rock/pop band Howlies play Black Cat with Young Buffalo. 8:30 p.m. $10.
Fargo bluesboy Jonny Lang plays the first of two engagements with Natalie York at Birchmere tonight. In the ’90s, Lang looked like a Hanson brother but impressed critics with his meaty voice and guitar solos. He doesn’t have a new album out yet, but he fancies collaboration—-last year he worked with Carlos Santana and Cyndi Lauper, among others. Oh, and the Jonas Brothers, in 2009. Ha! 7:30 p.m. $49.50.
NoVa rock band The NRIs have a newish five-song EP, Kings and Birds, and play Fort Reno tonight with The Gift and The Union of Sgt. Teddy. 7:15 p.m. Free.
Those who purchased tickets to the Gomez show at the 9:30 Club tonight are due for a refund. Ben Ottewell lost his voice and the British band canceled its eight remaining tour dates.
Regular readers of the New York Times‘ voyeuristic “On the Street” feature will want to catch Bill Cunningham New York, the documentary about the 80-something, bicycle-riding photographer known for capturing fashion trends in New York as they blossom on city streets. 7 p.m. at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. $8-10.