wednesday 4-satuday 7
Holiday Ale Festival
Just about every microbrewery makes its own version of a winter seasonal. Bringing together the Pacific Northwest's best cold-weather brews for the 18th year running, the Holiday Ale Festival includes not only the standard gingerbread ales, rich porters and stouts, and other trite winter warmers, but also hosts special releases including Deschutes Brewery's spiced brown ale called the Yule Goat and Frosty the Snow Quad (2008) Quadrupel. 10 Barrel Brewing Co. brings its Beernog (yeah—eggnog beer), and Hopworks Urban Brewery showcases Kronan the Bourbarian, a barrel-aged Baltic porter. 11 am. Pioneer Courthouse Square. $30-65.
The Head & The Heart
When the Head & the Heart released its first album in 2010, the band had an extremely independent operation. They were burning copies of the CD and selling them to local record stores in handmade denim sleeves. By the middle of 2011, City Arts Magazine had named them Seattle's best new band and they were opening at arenas for acts like Death Cab for Cutie and Dave Matthews Band. This year, they headlined their own arena-sized tour. With that kind of snowballing popularity, the band has quickly become the poster-children for simplistic folk Americana with full four-part harmonies, aggressive builds, and rollicking piano lines. Roseland Theater. 7 pm. $30-50.
friday 6-saturday 7
Who? Friedlander is the guy with the ridiculous slogan hats from "30 Rock," (hats that say things like "Time Travel Agent," "Beverage Expert" and "Burrito"). He also happens to be the dude who gives out free hugs in that one Dave Matthews Band video, AND he's a brilliant comedian. Friedlander is well practiced and performed standup several nights a week in New York City even for the duration of the seven seasons he was filming episodes of "30 Rock." The self-proclaimed "World Champion" discusses running for president, his expert karate skills, and the first time he had sex wearing a cape and goggles. 7:30 and 10 pm. Helium Comedy Club. $22-27.
tuesday 10-thursday 12
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
This Seattle hip-hop duo has been spamming radio waves with its three hugely popular hits, "Can't Hold Us Down," "Thrift Shop" and "Same Love," since the release of its ground breaking album, The Heist, in 2010. With television appearances on the Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Colbert Report, SNL, and countless music festivals under their belts, on top of the ability to play three consecutive nights at the 17,000-seat KeyArena, it seems the pair will be condemning homophobia in mainstream hip-hop and shopping at GoodWill in the public eye for years to come. Special guests Talib Kweli and Big KRIT open. 8 pm. KeyArena. $35-$55.