The first weekend of 2013 sets a celebratory tone for the year with the '80s vs. '90s: Rock 'n' Rollin' Dolls Edition and Wisco Disco dance parties, the Kid Disco party, and more live music by KG & the Ranger, The Producers, Echo Island with Brain Grimmer, The Shake Daddies, Ditchrunners, and Mojo Radio. The calendar also includes The Singing Bird Room of Robert Lostutter exhibit at MMoCA, Madtown Throwdown, and a new Opera Up Close.
NOTEWORTHY: Burj Khalifa, world's tallest building, opens, 2010.
The Singing Bird Room of Robert Lostutter
Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, through Jan. 6
This is your last opportunity to see Chicago Imagist Lostutter's magical, exotic hybrids of bird-men and orchid-men, rendered in brilliant colors, of which Isthmus reviewer Jennifer A. Smith says, "There's an element of surrealism in his work, but also such a meticulousness and realism that these creatures seem plausible." His haunting images will stay with you long after you've left the exhibit.
KG & the Ranger
Wil-Mar Center, 8 pm
Classic cowboy tunes à la Roy Rogers are this folk duo's specialty, along with yodeling, lasso twirling and sundry varieties of swashbuckling.
'80s vs. '90s: Rock 'n' Rollin' Dolls Edition
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
Trade Prince for Queen at this retro dance party hosted by DJs Nick Nice and Mike Carlson. They'll help revelers rock through the ages with grunge, hair metal, new wave and more in exchange for donations to the Mad Rollin' Dolls roller derby league.
High Noon Saloon, 9 pm
Local blues bigwig Kyle Henderson has corralled his bandmates from the Producers -- the new-wave band that performed at MTV's second annual New Year's Eve bash in the 1980s -- to play a reunion show and release a brand-new album, In the Blues. (See Music.) With Aaron Williams & the Hoodoo.
NOTEWORTHY: FM radio demonstrated for first time by Federal Communications Commission, 1940.
Great Dane-Hilldale, 11 am
Nick Nice is one of Madison's best DJs, so expect a particularly hip kids'-music mix at this family-friendly dance party. Santa Claus will make an appearance, and Funny Faces will entertain with balloon-sculpting and face-painting.
Alliant Energy Center's Exhibition Hall, 7 pm
It's only the first week of the new year, but some of us already need to get our aggressions out. That's where this mixed martial arts tourney comes in handy, featuring Tyler Hellenbrand, Josh Sterry, Dennis Anderson and other brawny bruisers.
Echo Island, Brain Grimmer
Dragonfly Lounge, 9 pm
Local composer Brian Grimm will morph into his electronica alter ego, Brain Grimmer, who combines the sounds of newfangled beats and ancient Chinese zithers. One-man band Echo Island will share tunes from his new, Brian Eno-inspired EP, Metropia. (See MadTracks.) With Control and Dressed Up.
Wisco Disco: From Roots to Revival
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
Whether you're a fan of Lindstrøm or the Village People, there's four-on-the-floor fun to be found at this celebration of disco and nu-disco featuring local DJs Wyatt Agard, Elle, kyleSapien and Nick Nice. Other highlights include a supersize mirror ball and a late-night pick-me-up of disco-inspired house music.
The Shake Daddys
Harmony Bar, 9:45 pm
The local band dedicates itself to fun, fun, fun with blues, funk and old-style rock 'n' roll. What better way to usher in 2013 than by dancing up a storm?
Crystal Corner Bar, 10 pm
In from Stevens Point, this rip-roaring country band will turn the Crystal Corner into the kind of roadhouse where one might find George Jones or the ghost of Johnny Cash. With Nellie Wilson and Royal Station.
High Noon Saloon, 10 pm
This local band's blend of '70s-inspired rock and traditional blues recently landed them on the roster of Grooveyard Records, a label that Megadeth's Chris Poland and guitar powerhouse Greg Koch also call home. With Chaos Revolution Theory and Subatomic.
NOTEWORTHY: Nancy Kerrigan clubbed on knee at U.S. Figure Skating Championships, 1994.
Opera Up Close
UW Biochemistry Building, 420 Henry Mall, Room 1125, 1 pm
Madison Opera presents a preview of Acis & Galatea in the UW Biochemistry Building, since its popular "Opera Up Close" programs have outgrown their previous venue, the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art. Learn more about Handel's tale of hanky-panky between demigods and mortals, running at the Overture Center Jan. 10-13.