Fri. Zap Mama, the acclaimed all-female a cappella quintet founded by Zaire native Marie Daulne, performs at the Black Cat (202-667-7960). Daulne, a strong advocate for women in Africa, and director Lisa Russell host a 6 p.m. screening at Ross Hall Room 101 at George Washington University of "Love, Labor, Loss," Russell's documentary about women in West Africa living with obstetric fistula, a childbearing injury that has debilitated more than 2 million women in the developing world. . . . The Duke Ellington Jazz Festival celebrates U Street's historic jazz legacy at three venues currently on what used to be known as Black Broadway: Venezuela's Aquiles Baez Quartet at the Bohemian Caverns (202-299-0800), Chuck Redd and Friends playing Ellington tunes at the True Reformer Building's Lankford Auditorium(202-965-1800) and pianist Larry Willis at Twins Jazz Club (202-234-0072). . . . Missed the Pixies reunion tour on its last swing? You can catch up with Frank Black and Co. at Baltimore's Sonar (410-327-8333). . . . Earlimart, a West Coast pop art experimental band for the new millennium, brings its musings on love, death and the death of love to Iota, with openers Richard Swift and Sons of National Freedom (703-522-8340).
Sat.The Ellington Festival brings jazz to the Mall for a free celebration from noon to 8 at the Sylvan Theater, featuring saxophonist Wayne Shorter and his quartet, homegrown trumpeter Wallace Roney, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Jerry Gonzales & the Fort Apache Band, vocalist Sunny Sumter and the venerable Chuck Brown, who does a rousing go-go version of "It Don't Mean a Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing") as well as jazz standards (www.dejazzfest.org). . . . Holland's Armin Van Buuren, whose crowd-pleasing dance tracks recently led to his being named the world's No. 3 DJ, is at Glow at Fur (202-842-3401). . . . Detroit's Electric Six share the bill with Outrageous Cherry and Her Daily Obsession at the Black Cat (202-667-7960).
Sun.Colin Meloy's ensemble, the Decemberists, manages to be book smart but not smarmy, erudite without being obscure, conceptual without being insufferable; the group's with Scotland's Sons & Daughters at the 9:30 club (202-393-0930) and Saturday at Sonar.
Mon.New York City-based jazz guitarist-composer Joel Harrison, who recently explored the music of another Harrison (George), and his quartet, featuring local powerhouse drummer Allison Miller, will be here, there and everywhere at Blues Alley (202-337-4141).
Weds.Maryland-rooted brother-sister team Judd and Maggie celebrate their RCA debut, "Subjects," at Jammin' Java (703-255-1566). . . . Calla's dark psychedelic pop and Celebration's gothic blues are showcases for two distinctive singers, Aurelio Valle and Katrina Ford, respectively. The bands (the latter from Baltimore) share a bill and celebrate new albums at the Black Cat (202-667-7960). . . . Grammy-winner (and former D.C. public school music teacher) Roberta Flack performs at the Music Center at Strathmore in a fundraiser in support of the Montgomery County Public Safety Memorial, honoring fallen fire rescue and law enforcement personnel; a special collection will take place during the concert to benefit Hurricane Katrina relief (301-581-5100).
Thur.Singer J.P. McDermott and Western Bop, masters of red-hot rockabilly and rowdy honky-tonk, unveil their debut, "Last Fool Here," at Falls Church's J.V.'s Restaurant (703-241-9504) with a Maryland follow-up Oct. 8 at Silver Spring's Half Moon BBQ (301-585-1290).
-- Richard Harrington