San Diego Comic-Con, the annual pop-culture mega-blowout, is staying home for 2020, but if staying home includes Ray Bradbury riding a dinosaur, maybe it's not such a bad thing. William Stout via Comic-Con @ Home
With the number of COVID-19 cases increasing across the state, it's more imperative than ever that you wear a mask and keep your distance if you decide to head out. But if you're cool with staying in, good news: We've got plenty of things to do in Portland this week, including a battle between hip-hop top dog(g)s, the marriage of science and beer, authors who should be congressmen, congressmen who are authors, and more. And as our Editor-In-Chief likes to say: If you're going to go out, Wash Ya Damn Hands, Wear Ya Damn Mask, hit the links below, and plan your week accordingly!


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Multi-Day

LIVESTREAMED EVENTS

Comic-Con @ Home
The mecca of all merchandising, the promised land of pop-culture religion, the convention that was once about comic-books and is now just sort of, like, one giant festival for marketing marks and advertising aficionados, is going online for 2020 because even when there wasn't a pandemic on, squeezing 100k people into San Diego's Convention Center was getting to be a bit too much in terms of crowding and also being a disgusting germ factory. So now, if you want to watch panels, watch trailers, watch people introduce new things for you to buy that you can't buy yet but you're excited and making a reaction video already, Comic-Con @ Home is five straight days of that regular Comic-Con experience, but on your TV instead! All panels will be available on the Comic-Con YouTube channel, and there's going to be about 350 of them spread out over the event.

Write Around Portland's Weekly Writing Workshops
Write Around Portland's creative writing workshops were a great investment in developing your imagination muscles even before there was a Coronavirus crisis. But now that you're home pretty much all the time, why not combat that sense of restlessness by learning how to channel your creativity as creatively as you can? Weekly registration for the workshops opens Mondays at noon and closes one hour before the workshops begin.

Monday, July 20

LIVESTREAMED EVENTS

Ibram X. Kendi
An evening of conversation with the acclaimed author of National Book Award-winner Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America, discussing his latest publication, How to Be an Antiracist, hosted by Dr. Charlene M. Dukes.

Congressman Eric Swalwell
The California congressman reads from his latest book Endgame: Inside the Impeachment of Donald J. Trump and discusses not just his own personal path into government, but also how he and other congresspeople fought to find out just how corrupt our president really was, and unfortunately learned just how willing to support him the Republican party was.

The 6/20 420 Comedy Extravaganja
A lot of people like to say that 420 isn't a date, or a time, but a state of mind. And now there's a livestreamed online comedy "extravaganja" putting that theory to the test starring Netflix's Cooking on High co-host Ngaio Bealum.

LIVESTREAMED CONCERTS

Marita and Her Heart's Desire
Chamber Music Northwest presents this program written specifically for young audiences as a means to introduce them to the intricacies, wonders, and fun that can be found in chamber music, telling the story of Marita, a girl who wants to talk to the moon, through clarinets, trombones, bassoons, and piccolos.

Metallica Mondays
Metal legends and behemoths in the Monsters of Rock pantheon, Metallica is doing their part to keep social distancing loud as hell and faster than lightning by presenting "Metallica Mondays," unleashing full live sets from their archives on YouTube and Facebook. Proceeds benefit All Within My Hands, working with Feeding America and Direct Relief.


Tuesday, July 21

IN-PERSON EVENTS

Meditation March for Black Lives Matter
Portland Buddhist Peace Fellowship leads this meditation march in support of Black Lives Matter. Attendees are asked to wear masks or face sheields and observe safe social distancing practices as they encircle City Hall to call attention to Portland's need to reject white supremacy and enact anti-racist policies.

LIVESTREAMED EVENTS

Samuel Sinyangwe & Nkenge Harmon Johnson
Omar El Akkad moderates this conversation between the President and CEO of the Urban League of Portland, Nkenge Harmon Johnson, and Police Scorecard creator Samuel Sinyangwe, diving into questions like "what aspects of policing can be reformed, what should be replaced, and what role (if any) can policing as we know it play in creating a feeling of safety and justice in our communities?"

Queer Town Hall: Federal LGBTQ Updates
A chance to join this ongoing public discussion about the whirlwind that summer 2020 already is, with the Supreme Court voting to uphold LGBTQ employment protections. Panelists including Mat Dos Santos of the Trans Law Center and Ian Thompson of the ACLU will talk about how those decisions happened, and where the next fights will be on a national level.

Virtual OMSI Science Pub
The live version of OMSI's very popular series combining science with sipping on drinks (you'll have to provide the drinks this time) continues online with a presentation titled "Our Gold Rush Past and Seismic Future" from Ross S. Stein, PhD, CEO and Co-Founder of Temblor, Inc.

LIVESTREAMED CONCERTS

Weekly Beat: DJ Moullinex
The SummerStage Anywhere livestream series continues making a sheltered, socially-distanced summer sound so much better than it should with this live set from Haitian beat alchemist DJ Moullinex, known for taking Haitian rhythms and vibes and blending them with modern production styles, to the benefit of artists like One Republic, Maxwell, and Alicia Keys.

Megan Diana
Portland singer/songwriter and pianist Megan Diana heads up the latest episode of Creative Music Guild's Outset Livestream series, with special guest Raymond Richards on the pedal steel guitar lending his hands.


Wednesday, July 22

LIVESTREAMED EVENTS

The Stranger Presents: Silent Reading Party
A lot of people are taking the opportunity to turn the online version of The Stranger's super-successful words 'n' vibes experience into a weekly online destination, a respite from (waves hands exasperatedly at basically everything) and an opportunity to simply... slow up, sit down, and just listen to live piano music while sinking into a good book. If you haven't tried it out yet, tonight's the night, and we'll see you at 6pm. If you have tried it out before? Welcome back. It's a damn nice oasis of low-key bliss, isn't it?

Adrian Tomine, Randall Park
Powell's presents a conversation between Randall Park, writer/director and star of Always Be My Maybe and Fresh off the Boat, and one of his favorite comics creators, the award-winning Adrian Tomine, whose latest graphic novel, The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Cartoonist , an autobiographical comic taking a measured look at his own life, the absurd ways he chooses to spend his time, and his conflicted relationship with the comics industry itself.

LIVESTREAMED CONCERTS

Verzuz: DMX vs. Snoop Dogg
It's been quite awhile since the last Verzuz battle to seriously capture the internet's attention and imagination. Honestly, if everyone involved had decided to shut it all down after Jill Scott + Erykah Badu's triumphant team-up (leave it to them to turn a battle into a healing session) nobody would have been surprised. But now, a battle that seems like it might be a completely one-sided affair in Uncle Snoop's favor is on the docket, and even if DMX goes down, he's going to go down barking as loud as he can. Plus, the stories both these guys might tell is reason enough to ride out whatever (inevitable) technical difficulties might occur.

Courtney Marie Andrews, Taylor Kingman
The blues seem like they’re an even deeper shade of blue these days, and personal micro-tragedies seem ever-more tied to larger systemic failures—something Andrews masterfully illustrates on tracks like “Two Cold Nights in Buffalo,” where she surveys the crumbling infrastructure of the Rust Belt town and laments the “American Dream dying,” as well as the blistering “Border,” which was inspired by the tensions in her hometown of Phoenix, Arizona, and tells the story of a Mexican immigrant struggling to cross the Sonoran Desert and then struggling to succeed in this country. It’s relevant and powerful protest music, and Andrews contextualizes her own despair within a much bigger picture, all sung in her emotive vibrato, which can resemble the iconic voices of Joni Mitchell, Linda Ronstadt, and Loretta Lynn within the span of the same song. CIARA DOLAN

Brandy Clark
The acclaimed country music singer and songwriter from Morton, Washington takes to her Insta once again for the latest installment of her "You Can't Come Over, But You Can Come In" weekly livestream.

Billy Strings
The aptly named Billy Strings (born William Apostol) played in heavy metal bands before embracing bluegrass, and his flat-picking style is a sort of mix between Doc Watson and Randy Rhoads. His solo debut, Turmoil & Tinfoil, offers up a collection of neo-traditional bluegrass songs addressing such contemporary matters as meth addiction and police shootings, while remaining rooted in dusty fields and muddy rivers. SANTI ELIJAH HOLLEY


Thursday, July 23

LIVESTREAMED EVENTS

Henry Cho
The "Clean Comedy Tour" coming to the Nowhere Comedy Club features stand-up from a Korean-American man raised in the South, which is why he has Jeff Foxworthy, Bill Engvall, and Larry the Cable Guy as special guests on his Comedy Central special What's That Clickin' Noise? Cho is supported on this tour by friend Aaron Weber.

Maddy Smith
An evening of livestreamed stand-up at the Nowhere Comedy Club from regular Wild N Out castmember Maddy Smith. You've probably heard of that show recently? There was... news surrounding it. Maybe Maddy will touch on it! Maybe Maddy won't touch it with a 10-foot pole! But there will be quick, sharp, yet relatable punchlines aplenty at tonight's gig.

LIVESTREAMED CONCERTS

Nick Cave
A streamed screening of a live 2019 performance from renowned Australian singer/songwriter, author, screenwriter, composer, and actor Nick Cave, shot by Robbie Ryan at the Alexandra Palace in London. Surely the sunshiny burst of optimism and good cheer you've been waiting for all week!

Music Will Bring Us Together Benefit Concert
National nonprofit Little Kids Rock is raising money for their music education mission by throwing a gala livestream concert featuring as many of their famous friends as possible, and teaming them up with Little Kids Rock's most talented students. Performers include Wiz Khalifa, Darlene Love, Jon Secada, Elvis Costello, Jesse Colin Young, Keb Mo, Joan Jett, and more.

Support The Portland Mercury

Lewi Longmire
One of the most ubiquitous and charismatic musicians around town, Lewi Longmire has played with nearly every able-bodied picker in Portland. Longmire's namesake band plays rustic Americana with some classic-rock electricity and a smattering of West Coast hippiedom for good measure. Free-wheelin' country-folk numbers sit beside peppy, Petty-esque rockers, and it all sounds great—probably even better after a joint or two. NED LANNAMANN

Whim
The Crystal Ballroom's Dance on Air Summer Balcony Series resumes with a local artist perfectly suited to the title: Sarah Isabella DiMuzio, who makes music as Whim that is perfectly suited to the notion of ascension.

Pink Sweat$
A livestreamed set from R&B up-and-comer Pink Sweat$, known for breaking many hearts through his silky smooth voice. Expect new songs from his upcoming album.

Thao Nguyen
I first saw folk rockers Thao & the Get Down Stay Down at laidback hippie-fest Pickathon, and I was not prepared. There's verve and soul in Thao's music, but there's a twisting, vibrant energy, too—and that's why seeing her live is so goddamn fun. ERIK HENRIKSEN

Drama
Na'el Shehade and Via Rosa definitely live up to the name Drama, but the Chicago duo create it with subtlety. Shehade's beats aren't overbearing, and instead hang mystically behind Rosa's supple vocals. The project’s mellow dramatics could score both late-night dance parties and solitary introspection. CERVANTE POPE