Fri. The musical options for Friday are impressive. Topping the list is P. Diddy at Fur Nightclub (202-842-3401), where he's performing his greatest hits. . . . At the 9:30 club (202-393-0930), ESPN Videogames presents Cali Comm 2004, a late show with Del the Funky Homosapien, Aceyalone and Abstract Rude, among others. Del and Aceyalone are underrated rappers who can spin a smart story in their music. . . . Another great show features rappers Toni Blackman, Psalmayene 24 and the Poem-Cees at the Lincoln Theatre (202-397-7328), with contemporary soul queen Erykah Badu as a special guest. . . . Old-school hip-hop heads should flock to Kili's Kafe (202-232-1562), where the lineup consists of some big names from back in the day. Melle Mel & Scorpio, Kurtis Blow, Whodini, the Sugar Hill Gang, Special Ed, Sweet Tee, Big Daddy Kane (a personal fave), Chubb Rock, Dana Dane and Busy Bee are all scheduled to appear. That should be a party. . . . Fans of southern gospel quartet music know that a "Gaither Homecoming" show is a must-see for a chance to hear some of the greats of that genre all on one stage. The tour comes to the Patriot Center (703-573-7328) and includes the Florida Boys, the Gaither Vocal Band, Jessy Dixon, Ben Speer, the Hoppers, the Isaacs, Mike Allen and others. . . . Exceptional Latin jazz pianist Eddie Palmieri begins a two-night stand at Blues Alley (202-337-4141). His ability to mix and match styles should make for a fine show.

Sat. Musician without borders Raul Malo is at the Birchmere (703-549-7500). Malo first came to prominence as part of the rocking country band the Mavericks back in the early '90s. Since then he has incorporated jazz and Latin sounds into his repertoire. For Malo, the key is simply "does it sound good?" And the answer is usually yes. . . . Casey MacGill & the Spirits of Rhythm are swinging at the Spanish Ballroom at Glen Echo Park (dance hotline: 703-359-9882). By the way, Halloween costumes are encouraged, with prizes awarded. . . . The fifth annual Katy Benko Concert, Dance and Fundraiser, featuring who else but country singer Katy Benko, takes place at the Herndon Community Center (703-713-3340). Benko is a Herndon native, and the show raises money for youth groups.

Sun. Pianist Joe Sample brings his jazz chops -- which are considerable -- to the Birchmere (703-549-7500).

Tues. Industrial icon Skinny Puppy is back with a new CD after about an eight-year layoff, and the group is touring again. Let the band rattle your bones at Thunderdome (410-354-4700) in Baltimore.

Thurs. It's a 20th anniversary tour for KMFDM, and the industrial music group hasn't lost any of its fierceness through the years. The band powers into the 9:30 club (202-393-0930). Also on the bill is DJ? Acucrack, whose dark melodies make him a good match for this show.

-- Curt Fields