- James Henke discusses his new book on John Lennon at local bookstores.
Rock Hall VP of Exhibitions James Henke wants his new book to be a take-home version of the recently shuttered exhibit about John Lennon. "Everyone responded so well to the artifacts," says Henke, whose Lennon Legend: An Illustrated Life of John Lennon includes 40 removable reproductions, including a report card, handwritten lyrics, and a self-portrait.
Many relics come from Yoko Ono's personal collection. "It's one thing to see them behind glass in a museum," Henke says. "But to actually be able to hold them is very special." He signs his book at 7 p.m. Thursday at Joseph-Beth Booksellers (13217 Shaker Square; 216-751-3300), 2 p.m. Saturday at the Cleveland Heights Borders (3466 Mayfield Road; 216-291-8605), and 2 p.m. Sunday at the Westlake Borders (30121 Detroit Road; 440-892-7667). Admission is free. -- Fred Wright
Yeah, Kill Bill is pretty cool. But 78-year-old Seijun Suzuki has been making dazzling, assassin-driven flicks for more than 40 years. His latest, Pistol Opera (a remake of his 1967 film Branded to Kill), follows the exploits of Stray Cat, a sharp-shooting gal determined to be No. 1 on the Killers' Guild list. It's a meditative, surreal piece -- it takes the opera in its title to heart -- that spills less blood than Tarantino's opus, but it's every bit as cathartic. It's at the Cleveland Cinematheque (11141 East Boulevard) at 9:10 p.m. Thursday and 7:30 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $8, $5 for members; call 216-421-7450. -- Michael Gallucci
Young Man Blues
Harpist Jason Ricci blows like there's no tomorrow.
Jason Ricci's peers say he's one of the top young harmonica players in the country. Now 29, Ricci was 15 when he started hanging out in Chicago blues bars with elder bluesmen like Little Walter and Adam Gussow. In 1999, he snagged the title of Top Harpist at the Mars National Harmonica Contest. Since then, Ricci and his trio, New Blood, spend a good deal of time touring. "We're a blues band with groove, jazz, and funk influences," Ricci says. "We play music as we feel it." Their latest album is Feel Good Funk, a collection of barroom standards and originals. Says Ricci, "We're not a retro blues band trying to emulate someone else." They're at Fat Fish Blue (21 Prospect Avenue) at 9:30 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $5; call 216-241-9203. -- Matt Leavitt