Spotlight on Thursday, May 9

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Entertainment

SUNSET PERFORMANCES

It's been pretty rainy this week, but Thursday looks to be clearing up, making it an awesome time to attend a sunset rooftop concert of the Beacon Hotel (1615 Rhode Island Ave. NW). North African band Azul will be performing at the Beacon's Sky-Bar as part of Art Soiree's Sunset Rooftop Performance Series. The band hails from Algeria, Morocco and Puerto Rico and is inspired by various ethnic groups in the region. The group continually looked toward Gawna, Moorish and Andalusian music as its main sources of influence, and you'll hear a wealth of sounds and trances as a result.

Azul will be joined by Columbian singer Tatiana Baquero, who sings contemporary Latin folk and Argentinean Latin pop music. Her new album is all about love, family and passion for music.

The concert will start at 8 p.m., but we suggest you get there at 5 p.m. to hear the mad DJ skills of musical junkie Caseo. This event is free.

HEALTHY COOKING

It's always puzzling to us how top chefs -- who are constantly surrounded by good food -- resist eating, well, all day long. According to celebrity chef Art Smith of Art and Soul, it isn't easy. That's why Smith set out on a personal journey to health and wellness. By reinventing his favorite dishes and exercising weekly, he managed to lose 120 pounds. He recorded his journey in his new cookbook, "Art Smith's Healthy Comfort." The book includes recipes he used to lose weight, such as "Un-Fried" chicken and grilled hanger steak.

He'll be signing copies of his book ($27.99) from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at Art and Soul (415 New Jersey Ave. NW). If you can't make it Thursday night, there will be copies on sale at the restaurant.

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