Things to do in Denver this weekend: Free books, Grateful Dead, MLK Day events

Horror, sci-fi and free books at the Tattered Cover

Thursday. Erie’s Hex Publishers has been responsible for some of Colorado’s most surprising and acclaimed genre fiction over the past eight years, from surveys of cyberpunk and horror to poetry, graphic novels and lushly illustrated children’s books.

On Thursday, Jan. 19, Hex founder and editor Joshua Viola is holding an umbrella event at the Tattered Cover’s Colfax Avenue location to celebrate the publication of six Hex books — including its Colorado Book Award-winning “Shadow Atlas.” The event features giveaways of free books, CD soundtracks, stickers and more. Those 21-and-up can also head next door to the Sie FilmCenter afterward for a “private” mixer that includes one free drink.

Hosted by USA Today bestseller Carter Wilson, the event includes authors and artists Mario Acevedo, Carina Bissett, Hillary Dodge, Sean Eads, Warren Hammond, Angie Hodapp, Nicholas Karpuk, Aaron Lovett, Jeanne C. Stein and founder Viola. 6 p.m. Jan. 19 at the Tattered Cover Colfax Avenue, 2526 E. Colfax Ave. in Denver. Free, with no registration required. Call 303-322-7727 or visit hexpublishers.com or tatteredcover.com/event for more.

Celebrating MLK’s legacy at Redline

Monday. Speaking of free events: RSVP now for RedLine Contemporary Art Center’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day event on Monday, Jan. 16. From 4 to 6 p.m., Redline will host a community panel called “Mile 18: One Year Later …  A Conversation on the Labor & Love of Belonging,” led by award-winning choreographer Helanius J. Wilkins. Wilkins walks up to 16 miles per day as part of a multi-year project about racial and social justice.

Notably, the event will feature a conversation with civil rights legend John B. Smith, who knew Dr. King personally. The free, in-person event will also be live-streamed on RedLine’s Instagram and Facebook accounts. 2350 Arapahoe St. in Denver. 303-296-4448 or visit redlineart.org for more.

Beth Stelling at Comedy Works

Through Saturday. Few comics have so masterfully toed the line between acerbic and sweet the way Beth Stelling has. The Dayton, Ohio, native has proven her chops over the past few years by writing for and appearing on HBO shows such as “Crashing,” and releasing specials on HBO Max and Netflix (the latter a half-hour dispatch as part of “The Standups” series).

But Stelling, who began winning over Denver audiences as part of the High Plains Comedy Festival, shines brightest on stage as she winds her way through bumper stickers, bad relationships and — and favorite subject — her doting Midwestern mom. She plays multiple shows Thursday, Jan. 12, through Saturday, Jan. 14, at Comedy Works downtown, 1226 15th St. in Denver. Tickets: $30, 21-and-up. comedyworks.com

“Jazz is Dead” rises at the Paramount

Sunday. Jazz is chief among the musical genres that have been repeatedly declared dead over the decades, always mutating and reforming and reaching into endless relevant forms that reinforce it as one of America’s preeminent art forms.

That evolution will be clear on Sunday, Jan. 15, at the Paramount Theatre as the Jazz is Dead band reinterprets the music of the Grateful Dead through (you guessed it) a jazz-fusion perspective. Celebrating its 25th anniversary, the all-star group features co-founder Alphonso Johnson along with instrumental royalty Steve Kimock, Pete Lavezzoli and Bobby Lee Rodgers, performing the Dead’s “Wake of The Flood” (itself marking a 50th anniversary). Notably, Johnson and Kimock played in the post-Garcia Dead offshoot The Other Ones with Bob Weir.

Concert at 7:30 p.m. at 1621 Glenarm Place in downtown Denver. Tickets: $25-$75 via ticketmaster.com.

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