Here at Weekly Alibi, we love the sweet leaf and everyone who makes access possible. That’s why we’re hosting the very first Southern New Mexico Cannabis Expo presented by Rich Global Hemp Company in Las Cruces, NM. Educate yourself on the medical cannabis and hemp industry. Meet the faces behind the business on Friday, November 1st at the Las Cruces Convention Center. Visit over 30 vendors from New Mexico and west Texas from 12:00PM to 5:00PM and learn all about the benefits of medical marijuana and industrial hemp.
Some folks think extending Paseo del Norte will alleviate Westside traffic problems, while others say the area is an urban planning nightmare that's only getting worse
By Tim McGivern
People are funny. Take Albuquerque's Westside as an example. Every year for more than a decade, the area north of I-40 and west of I-25 breaks the previous year's record for new home construction. Starter homes keep sprouting like weeds after a spring storm all over the escarpment, and folks keep buying them even while it's common knowledge that a guaranteed traffic disaster comes free with the purchase. To live out there, residents must be, remarkably, willing to accept what District 5 City Councilor Michael Cadigan refers to as "the downside of a very difficult commute."
Government documents reveal "yard holes" filled with radioactive refuse at Sandia Labs
By Ryan Floersheim
Citizen Action, a local government watchdog group, has for years endured courtroom battles and crawled over roadblocks in its search for proof that Sandia National Laboratories is in fact endangering the state's soil and groundwater supply with its controversial Mixed Waste Landfill.
Talk about a powerful resistance to shame ... Folks, here's further proof that America is becoming a parody of itself. The Republican National Committee parked an 18-wheeler, named Reggie the Rig, in front of MTV's Times Square office last month in an attempt to win over the youth vote. Once it was safely parked, Reggie "morphed into a soundstage and pumped out hip-hop hits," according to a mind-numbing report appearing on Salon.com last week entitled, “GOP playa hatas.”
The 800-pound gorilla—another vote on the Paseo del Norte road extension—failed to materialize at the April 19 council meeting. Putting the bill on the evening's agenda would have required a 6-3 majority, and Council President Michael Cadigan did not attempt it.
There was a time a few months back when I seriously doubted that Mayor Martin Chavez would run for re-election. At the time he looked, for all the world, like the latest in our long procession of single-term city leaders left as road kill on the municipal median.
Dateline: Germany—Judges in the Bonn regional court rejected a woman's claim that candy-making conglomerate Haribo failed to warn her about the dangers of consuming mass quantities of licorice. Margit Kieske, 48, ate a full pound of licorice every day for four months and said it gave her heart problems. The Berlin woman was seeking $7,200 in damages. For flavor, licorice contains glyycyrrhizin, a powerful compound derived from licorice root. Any product containing more than 0.2 percent of glycyrrhizin must be labeled accordingly. The Haribo licorice contained less than that amount. Therefore, presiding Judge Paul-Hermann Wagner determined that there was no error in labeling the product. The licorice-addicted Kieske's claim was rejected.
Alibi Spring Crawl 2004, our 10th in the Crawl series that began with the inaugural Fall Crawl back in 1999, is another one for the history books. And, like its predecessors, it provided live music and fun to nearly 10,000 folks eager for Albuquerque's largest, most diverse music festival. Of course, there were still a few lowlights among the many highlights, so let's begin with them, shall we? ... A big ol' Alibi “Bad for you, Albuquerque” goes to two bands I happen to like: Rage Against Martin Sheen and Unit 7 Drain. Out of roughly 95 local bands and solo artists appearing at this year's Spring Crawl, Rage and Unit were the only ones to whine like babies about their assigned set times and/or venues. Apparently, they forgot to take into account that scheduling the bands at each Crawl is a friggin' nightmare, and bands get slotted according to venue requests. Suck it up or give your slot to a band that will appreciate being a part of these events we work extra hard (not to mention extra hours) to produce (you guys are welcome to write letters to the editor, by the way). ... Our first attempt at including a handful of national acts would have been a resounding success had the Romantics' tour manager not behaved like a prima donna asshole. Oh, well. The band members were very cool and very happy to have been a part of Alibi Spring Crawl 2004. ... Now for the good: Hit By a Bus on the Third Street Outdoor Stage, followed by simple., who were introduced to a befuddled crowd by Seann William Scott (a.k.a. Stiffler), Wagogo on the Fifth Street Outdoor Stage, the entire line-up at both the District Bar and Grill and La Posada Hotel, The Romantics on the Fifth Street Outdoor Stage and the untouched deli tray they left that'll feed me for a week. APD finding our lost golf cart after it had been driven to an apartment complex on Carlisle. Sleeping like a baby for a few hours on my office floor after the event. ... More next week.
There was little doubt that Atomic Cantina (315 Gold, 242-2200) would survive its first year, but who knew the club would end up being as successful as it has? With great live entertainment, delicious food and an "everybody knows your name" atmosphere, Atomic has flourished and become the favorite hang-out of many locals. Celebrate the bar and restaurant's one-year anniversary on Wednesday, May 5, with a star-studded line-up of bands including Ready Samsara, Dead on Point 5, Rebilt, The Mindy Set, Romeo Goes to Hell, Oktober People, Scenester, The Dirty Novels, The Foxx and The Building Press. The fun starts at 8 p.m., so head down early and raise a glass to one of Albuquerque's most explosive bars. Show is free ...
Being about as far from a modern expert as any human being could possibly get, it's rare that I write about forms of entertainment other than the kind that's performed using musical instruments. But the Santa Fe Art Institute's upcoming installation, The Domino Effect: natural influence over technology seems so potentially groundbreaking—and with enough of a musical component to ease my fear of writing about largely uncharted artistic territory—that I just can't resist making a go of it.
From a creative standpoint, art doesn't get more mind-bending than that which is to be included in The Domino Effect, a multimedia smorgasbord of technologically enhanced and advanced artwork that knows no bounds. For what we might perceive to be the outer limits of the coalescence of technologic advance and the human desire to create in a hands-on sense will likely be last week's news at an increasingly rapid pace.
Saturday, May 1; Burt's Tiki Lounge (21 and over, 9 p.m.): Something special happens when bands fuse two seemingly nonrelated styles of music. Not only does it create a new direction in which music can head, but it also makes you stop and realize that some people are still thinking outside the box, and that's kind of comforting.
Saturday, May 1; Launchpad (21 and over; 9 p.m.): Of all the cool, hip and trendy things to come out of Brooklyn, N. Y., Enon has to be one of the coolest, hippest and trendiest. That's not to say that they're posers—just the opposite, in fact—they're the real thing with their electric/synth-, half guitar-driven indie buffet. Forgive me for my lack of expertise when it comes to bands of this genre—my music collection tends to stick to more traditional stuff—so my simple brain will compare Enon to bands I know: The Kinks, The Cure, Cibo Matto, The Vaselines. If this sounds like a wide range of musics coming together under one roof, well, that's the most fun thing about Enon: their eclectic variety. And variety is the spice of life.
Spanish Cinema—El Gallo de Oro, Roberto Gavaldón's 1964 drama, is considered a hallmark of Mexican cinema. This romantic story steeped in Mexican tradition has two men—one rich, one poor—competing for the affections of one señorita. The National Hispanic Cultural Center will be screening it this Thursday night, April 29, at 6:30 p.m. as part of the NHCC Spanish Film series. Admission is free. The film will show in NHCC's Wells Fargo Auditorium, located at 1701 Fourth Street NW. The film is in Spanish with English subtitles.
Throughout Los Angeles, Rodney Bingenheimer is known simply as “Rodney on the Roq.” Since 1976, he has been a disc jockey for Los Angeles' influential KROQ radio station, introducing bands from Blondie and The Sex Pistols to No Doubt and The Strokes to American audiences (usually before their big label debuts). Rodney's music industry credentials go back even further, having founded Rodney Bingenheimer's English Disco (the East Coast playground for David Bowie, Iggy Pop, T. Rex and Led Zeppelin) back in the early '70s. Before that, Bingenheimer palled around with everyone from Linda Ronstadt to The Beach Boys to Sonny & Cher to Elvis to The Monkees. So why have you never heard of Rodney Bingenheimer? That's one of many questions voiced by director George Hickenlooper's compelling new documentary, Mayor of the Sunset Strip.
O, no!—Omarosa Manigault-Stallworth, the love-to-hate-her icon from NBC's “The Apprentice,” continues to find the post-Donald waters somewhat treacherous. With assorted lawsuits still swirling, Omarosa spent the last few weeks crowing on “Access Hollywood” about her new gig as an Herbal Essence spokesperson. Turns out the shampoo giant has washed that girl right out of its hair, decideding not to broadcast Omarosa in the throes of fake, hair-care product-induced orgasm. “Omatrocious,” as she's now been dubbed, was dumped from the campaign for fear of consumer backlash. ... Meanwhile, over on the set of “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” Omarosa made herself persona non-grata last week by storming off the set just before airtime. Seems that Omarosa stepped on to the set and saw a lie-detector machine. Producers tried to assure Lady O that the equipment was for a comedy bit featuring show regular Uncle Frank and that they were not planning on forcing her to take a polygraph test. She walked anyway, leaving host Jimmy Kimmel to quip, “Apparently, her 15 minutes ended the second before I introduced her.” ... Don't worry, Omarosa, “Celebrity Fear Factor” will be calling any day now.
If it seems hard to believe that it's already been a year since Steve White's last Yardfest, that's because it hasn't. Although White's beloved front-yard celebration of all things folksy is usually held in early September, he pushed it forward this year to Saturday, May 1, to accommodate a trip he plans to make in September to another folk festival in Georgia.
Just before the curtain rises, director Eugene Douglas hops on stage to address the crowd.
"I can't tell you how excited I am you're all here tonight," he says. "I'm pumped. I am so pumped!"
For me, it's always heartening to see creative types express this kind of enthusiasm for their projects. Douglas' passion seems to have fueled the action on stage. In Ivanov, he's managed to coax some smart and energetic performances from an accomplished student cast.
Douglas' production plays through this weekend at UNM's Rodey Theatre. Chekhov's first full-length play to be staged, Ivanov has never been considered a masterpiece on par with his later, better-known plays such as The Seagull, Uncle Vanya, The Three Sisters or The Cherry Orchard. That said, the play, composed when Chekhov was only 27 years old, still contains some remarkable displays of the Russian writer's innate literary wit.
This is news to me: Apparently the area around Mt. Taylor, which is located just west of Albuquerque near Grants, is home to a herd of wild mustangs called mestaños. This is an interesting factoid in itself. What's even more amazing is that these mestaños are the likely descendants of escaped horses originally brought to New Mexico by Don Juan de Oñate himself over 400 years ago. Award-winning photographer Lynne Pomeranz presents an exhibit of photos of mestaños at House O' Fire Sculpture Garden and Gallery in Corrales. The show opens on Saturday, May 1, with a reception from 4 to 6 p.m. The Dance of the Mt. Taylor Mustangs runs through May 21. Stop by for a rare glimpse of these elusive animals. 890-3141.
And so it comes down to this. All year long local poets have been locked in a deadly struggle for the distinctive honor of joining this year's Albuquerque Poetry Slam Team. This Saturday, May 1, at 8 p.m. at the Outpost Performance Space the battered and bruised survivors will stumble into the ring to beat each other to poetic pulp. Join co-hosts Danny Solis and Kenn Rodriguez for the poetry highlight of the season. Admission is $7. These poets will rock your socks off. 268-0044.
Amy Goodman opens her new book, The Exception to the Rulers: Exposing Oily Politicians, War Profiteers, and the Media That Love Them (Hyperion Books, hardcover, $21.95), with a hair-raising account of her 1991 trip to East Timor. The trip was hardly a vacation. Goodman visited the tiny island country to cover the atrocities committed there by the Indonesian military, which, in 1975, began massacring 200,000 Timorese—two-thirds of the entire country—largely with U.S.-supplied arms.
Don't do drugs, kids. They make you do terrible, terrible things. Among other horrors, sometimes people who use marijuana tragically lose their ability to make appropriate food choices. You may encounter potheads at 7-Eleven, making dangerous concoctions at the Slurpee machine and woefully non-nutritious selections in the candy aisle. Grass abusers often claim to have created new "snacktime paradigms" while under the influence but don't let them peer-pressure you into trying a chicharron and jalapeño Jelly Belly pie. One stoner I know arranges a single layer of M&M's on a paper plate and microwaves them for exactly 41 seconds. The result, he claims, is crispy-shelled candies with semi-molten interiors that taste like "midget shots of Swiss Miss [hot cocoa]." The paper plate is left with a pattern of candy shell residue that he says looks like a cross between the work of Jackson Pollack and Monet. He also insists upon a sort of supernatural synergy between chilled Grey Goose Vodka and Junior Mints. It's too bad his "alternative lifestyle" led him away from his true calling—as a chef, of course! Tsk, tsk.
Visitors to the main post office at Broadway Boulevard and Mountain Road would do their tummies well to drop by Andrea's Tamale Hut for a quick nibble. The bright yellow, doughnut-shaped portable building is thankfully hard to miss. Just park in the adjacent gravel lot and amble up to the window. The posted menu is brief; tamales are sold for a buck a piece and by the dozen. In the morning, Andrea's has breakfast burritos and in the afternoon, carne adovada at three bucks each. Order one of those adovada burritos and the sweet, kind lady in the Hut (I forgot to ask if her name was Andrea) heats up each tortilla on a portable burner before filling it with scoops of chile-braised pork and potatoes. The surprisingly moist tamales are filled with savory red chile and pork. Order the "boat" and your tamale will come smothered in red chile.
Diabetes is the fifth leading cause of death by disease in the United States and it has no cure. African Americans, Mexican Americans and Native Americans run the highest risk of developing the disease, which puts diabetes at the forefront of New Mexico's community health concerns. Unfortunately, there is still a lot of confusion surrounding the relationship between diet and diabetes.
The “Father of Modern Southwestern Cuisine” Returns to New Mexico
By Gwyneth Doland
On Saturday, May 8, acclaimed chef John Sedlar will be at Santa Ana Pueblo's Prairie Star restaurant to collaborate with Chef Heath VanRiper on a dinner to benefit the American Diabetes Association. Alibi caught up with this native New Mexican at his office in Los Angeles to talk about southwestern food in general and the dinner in particular.
OK, maybe it's not South By Southwest or Coachella, but it is unquestionably the best thing that's ever happened—and continues to happen—to the Albuquerque music scene. It also provides Downtown businesses with two of their best nights of the year in terms of pure revenue. I'm writing, of course, about the Alibi Crawl Series, the twice-yearly events we've been presenting faithfully and to larger and larger audiences since our inaugural Fall Crawl in August of 1999. The story actually begins years earlier, in 1994, when the popular opinion, even among the Downtown club and other business owners that were pitched on the idea originally, was that such an event was an impossibility in Albuquerque. But suffice it to say that after nine successful Crawls, the impossible has become a reality the entire community expects to take place every April and August. And even in our wildest dreams, we didn't begin to imagine that, in addition to hundreds upon hundreds of bands and solo artists, the Crawls would be embraced and enjoyed by such a diverse cross section of Burque dwellers. Folks that once avoided Downtown like a plague now visit at least twice a year. Businesses that used to approach Crawl nights by skeptically closing up shop and going home now extend their hours and invite the 12,000 or so attendees who come to each of the Crawls to listen, eat and spend their money on all the goods and services Downtown—quite suddenly—has to offer. As we wrap up the final preparations for Alibi Spring Crawl 2004, the 10th event in our series, we'd like to offer heartfelt kudos to everyone—bands, businesses, venues, sponsors, local media, city officials and the great crowds—for helping turn these events into the fantastic entertainment spectacles they've become.
Past attempts to summarize the sound of every single band participating in the Crawl in one sentence proved a dismal failure. Some bands inevitably felt slighted, others were pissed that our descriptions didn't match their own delusions of adequacy. So we decided to write more extensively on performers we consider to be just a few of the many highlights of this year's Alibi Spring Crawl. If you or your band are profiled herein and are still unhappy with the description, buy an ad, you malcontent, and tell us all what you think you sound like. Call John Hankinson at 346-0660 ext. 265 to reserve your ad space today!
Seven reasons why we bother listing places to eat when this is supposed to be about music: 1) Ya gotta eat. 2) You might as well eat Downtown since you're going down there anyway. 3) If you plan to eat early in the evening, then you won't be reduced to getting patted down and wanded at the door of Frontier at 3 a.m. 4) Eating before drinking will help keep your energy level up for all the "woo-hoo"-ing and fist-pumping you'll be doing later. 5) It'll also help keep you from barfing. 6) Barfing is what we call "conduct unbecoming of a lady." 7) Also, nobody wants to make out with a guy who just blew chunks all over his shoes.
Back in the mid-'70s, a New York band called KISS distinguished Michigan's largest metropolis from all the other cities in the country by dubbing what had formerly been known as the "Motor City"—the automobile capitol of the world at the time—then "Motown,"—the birthplace of modern soul—as something altogether different and infinitely more memorable: "Detroit: Rock City." And rock it did. From Iggy and the Stooges and the MC5 to George Clinton, Ted Nugent and Alice Cooper, Detroit in the '60s and '70s produced some of the most influential and enduring American rock 'n' roll music and personalities since Elvis first shook his ass on a Memphis stage. And on Valentine's Day, 1977, four more of those personalities making that kind of music formed, one must assume, in some suburban Detroit garage: the Romantics, among the finest power pop bands ever catapulted on the scene from either side of the Atlantic, were born.
Official memo reveals that even true believers see the seeds of civil war in the occupation of Iraq
By Jason Vest
As the situation in Iraq grows ever more tenuous, the Bush administration continues to spin the news with matter-of-fact optimism. According to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Iraqi uprisings in half a dozen cities, accompanied by the deaths of more than 100 soldiers in the month of April alone, is something to be viewed in the context of "good days and bad days," merely "a moment in Iraq's path towards a free and democratic system." More recently, the president himself asserted, "Our coalition is standing with responsible Iraqi leaders as they establish growing authority in their country."
With gratitude to Salon.com's "Right Hook" column (which is where "Thin Line" borrowed the idea), I offer you a highly selective sample of opinion appearing in the national media last week, surrounding President George W. Bush's press conference.
Watching Gov. Bill Richardson's unceremonious (some would argue deplorable) removal of business honcho Sherman McCorkle from the state's military base retention commission, one wonders, a la Bob Dole during the 1996 presidential campaign, "Where's the outrage?"
Dateline: Thailand—A British man has been arrested for going topless after smuggling an estimated $100,000 worth of ecstasy tablets into Thailand. “They didn't catch me at the airport,” 35-year-old Alan John Kiernan told Reuters Televison. “I got through eight customs without being stopped.” In fact, Kiernan was arrested by Bangkok police for not wearing a shirt. The Southampton resident arrived in Thailand from Switzerland last Friday and was stopped the following day in a park for wandering around without a shirt. Following his arrest, police found more than 9,000 ecstasy tablets in his pants. “Shit happens,” Kiernan, who could face the death penalty, said at a news conference.
Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? at the Cell Theatre
By Steven Robert Allen
Personally, I'm not all that frightened of Virginia Woolf. What does scare the crap out of me is the quartet of dysfunctional, alienated weirdoes who binge drink their way through Edward Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
The Tricklock Company is putting up a new version of Macbett, Eugene Ionesco's infamous spoof of Shakespeare's Macbeth. Wacky, funny and down-right bloody outrageous, this production, directed by Joe Feldman, is a fast and furious slice of absurdist theater that examines the demonic nature of power and corruption. The show runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 6 p.m., through May 23. $12 general, $9 students/seniors. A special catered opening gala will occur on Friday, April 23, at 8 p.m. $18. To reserve tickets, call 254-8393.
Emily Stilson suffers a brutal stroke after a long career as a wing-walker. Arthur Kopit's play Wings follows Stilson's life in the aftermath of this tragedy as she slips in and out of consciousness. The audience glimpses her trauma from her own perspective and that of her doctors and physical therapist. This nuanced psychological play runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 6 p.m. through May 16 at the Vortex in a new production directed by Lou Mazzullo. $10 general, $8 students/seniors. 247-8600.
Though not a densely populated publishing Mecca like the Northeast, the Southwest is home to many small presses whose work is every bit as impressive. Tucson's University of Arizona Press recently released two ambitious, carefully crafted books of poetry: Margo Tamez's Naked Wanting(University of Arizona Press, paper, $15.95) and David Dominguez's Work Done Right(University of Arizona Press, paper, $15.95). Likewise, Albuquerque's La Alameda Press has released Michael Rothenberg's Unhurried Vision(La Alameda Press, paper, $16). This trio of books showcases the publishers' ability to produce well-crafted and beautifully designed books.
Put a Tiger in Your Television—Innovative indie media personality Carlos Pareja from New York-based Paper Tiger Television (PTTV) will be at the University of New Mexico on Thursday, April 22, to present a special video screening/lecture. PTTV is a non-profit, volunteer-based video collective founded in 1981. The purpose of PTTV is to challenge and expose the corporate control of mainstream media and to involve people in the process of making their own media. Locally, PTTV programming can be seen on Albuquerque Public Access channel 27. Pareja will be in the Lobo Room on the top floor of UNM's Student Union Building to discuss 20 years of media repair and to screen examples of Paper Tiger's ongoing media literacy projects. The screening/lecture is sponsored by UNM's P.L.A.C.E. program (Partnership in Learning through the Arts, Culture and Environment) and gets underway at 7 p.m. It is free and open to the public.
Film festival from across the Americas returns to ABQ
By Devin D. O'Leary
The Sin Fronteras Film Festival is a media festival created to showcase the works of socially conscious independent video and filmmakers from across the Americas. For the second year in a row, it is sponsored by UNM's Student Organization for Latin American Studies and the Latin American and Iberian Institute. This Saturday, April 24, Sin Fronteras will fill the Guild Cinema in Nob Hill with comedy, drama, documentary, animation and experimental films.
It's been a little over a year since the much-loved Taos Talking Picture Film Festival (TTPIX) died and went away. Earlier this month, the Taos Picture Show successfully kept up the tradition, recruiting several key players from TTPIX, including programming director Kelly Clement and artistic director Jason Silverman. Now comes another gang of film lovers dedicated to bringing film back to the streets of Taos. From Wednesday, April 23, through Sunday, April 25, the Taos Vision Quest International Film Festival will bring the spirit of independent filmmaking to Northern New Mexico.
Derivative body swap comedy needs to do a little growing up
By Devin D. O'Leary
Body swap comedies were a (thankfully) short-lived trend of the '80s. The success of Tom Hanks in Big led to a string of pale imitations like 18 Again, Vice Versa, 14 Going on 30 and Like Father, Like Son--all of which featured kids suddenly trapped in the bodies of adults. It didn't take long after the teenybopper success of Disney's Freaky Friday remake for Hollywood to jump back on the trend, however.
Although most of America seems adverse to the idea of actually cleaning, renovating and decorating their houses, they are quite happy to watch TV shows about other people performing those same activities. Having burned through every variation of home trading, sweeping, monsterizing and making over, television has turned to our next most cherished possession: the American automobile. Leading the charge in the vehicular renovation movement (followed closely by TLC's “Overhaulin'”) is MTV's hilariously titled “Pimp My Ride.”
Hey, nitwit! Alibi Spring Crawl 2004 is this Saturday, April 24. Have you purchased your wristband yet? ... Not only are we presenting our 10th Crawl on Saturday, we're sponsoring the return of Stacey Earle and Mark Stuart at the Outpost Performance Space. If you plan to attend that 8 p.m. show, you'll still have plenty of time to enjoy even more great live music at Spring Crawl. Call the Outpost at 268-0044 for more info. ... Some other noteworthy events this week: DJ Shadow and Blackalicious are scheduled to invade the Sunshine Theater for a dreamy little festival on Monday, April 26. ... Singer-songwriter Bonnie Bailiff will perform on Sunday, April 25 from 1-3 p.m. at Maison and The' at 821 Canyon Road in Santa Fe. ... On Monday night, April 26, the T-Lords Softball Club, which represents Downtown's bar and band scene and should actually be called either the Bad News Beers or the League of Extraordinarily Hungover Gentlemen, will lose their final two games of the Spring 2004 season. If you enjoy reruns of “The Keystone Cops” episodes, you're gonna love the T-Lords! ... Up and coming acoustic duo Seth and Jacob have just released their debut CD, Lick Your Mind, on Santa Fe's Frogville label. Visit www.sethandjacob.com or www.frogville.com for details on where you can pick up a copy. Having seen the duo perform at Stella Blue and being a fan of the acoustic music scene, I can honestly recommend checking them out live. ... Posthumous congratulations to bluegrass trio Mary and Mars on their appearance at South By Southwest last month. I wasn't aware they'd secured a slot until I got to Austin. Sorry, lady and gentlemen.
Brassum with the Dottie Grossman-Michael Vlatkovich Duo
Tuba maestro Mark Weaver has long been one of Albuquerque's most prolific and unpredictable musicians. Over the years, Weaver has involved himself in such disparate projects as the Doo Rag-ish Selsun Blue (a.k.a. the Selsuns) to California-based trumpeter Jeff Kaiser's 18-piece improvisational ensemble, Ockodektet. Tonight, though, Weaver will perform with a Los Angeles-based quartet he leads called Brassum, that includes Dan Clucas (cornet, flute), Michael Vlatkovich (trombone) and percussionist Harris Eisenstadt.
Weaver penned all nine tracks on last year's Brassum recording, Warning Lights (Plutonium); compositions that run the gamut between (almost) traditional brass band tunes ("Minus," "Movie"), the nearly atonal clang of a steel mill ("Seven Enchiladas") and sparse loneliness ("Elements"). And while some of the music here, presumably the boundary crossing solos by Weaver and his brothers in brass, is admittedly improvised, there's a structural quality within Weaver's compositions—and fleshed out by Eisenstadt with frightening precision—that adds a sort of post-bop, avant-garde feel without straying too far out in left field.
with Red Earth, Robert Mirabal, Native Roots and more
By Rachel Heisler
Friday, April 23; El Rey Theatre/Golden West Saloon (12 and over, 8 p.m.): In celebration and appreciation of all things Native American, native New Mexican and Southwestern, Red Earth presents its annual Electric 49. This year's gathering continues the seven-year tradition of being one of Albuquerque's best native festivals—boasting music by the most home-grown and treasured musicians from in and around the state.
Comedian David Cross' second album for Sub Pop, It's Not Funny, is not only funnier than his first, Shut Up, You Fucking Baby, it's smarter, angrier and delves even more deeply into the sad current state of American politics. In fact, Cross' various indictments of Bush, Rick Santorum, Strom Thurmond and other racist, homophobic Republicans is at times so vitriolic it's painful. Funny and true, but painful. Cross is a master storyteller and funny in the same intelligent, forward thinking way that Bill Hicks was: taking sensitive, taboo and controversial topics and splaying them out unmercifully.
The highlight of Easter weekend was watching my sister dip her toast in cat drool and eat it. She was fresh from a recent victory in the kitchen, having won a minor fight I started over why she would choose Sun-Maid raisin bread instead of the gorgeous cranberry-pecan pain au levain I'd bought that morning. Her road-weary, cranky mood was perhaps buoyed by this unusual turn of events (I usually win our fights, if only with sheer persistence) and she sat happily gabbing with relatives at the coffee table, her toast-filled hand casting crumbs with every gesticulation. Then Derkins, Aunt Cynthia's aging cat, jumped up on the table for a visit, staying only long enough to allow a viscous thread of drool to escape from one of the gaps in her malocclusion and form a small puddle just to the left of my sister's toast plate. Now, my sister loves cats—she has three and she calls them her "babies"—so I think she was probably trying to stand up for cats in general when, in response to our collective eeeewwww at the sight of this puddle, she dunked her toast in the drool and chewed it up with a smile. "Cats are the cleanest animals," she said.
Artichoke Café's (Central and Edith) expansion is nearly complete but more improvements are on the way. I finally got a chance to check out the work they did last year, converting an underused back patio into an extra kitchen, wine room and two new private dining rooms. Following a popular movement in the restaurant industry, owners Pat and Terry Keene created the new space in the hopes of attracting more business functions and private parties. The two dining rooms can be booked separately or opened up into one larger space seating up to 60 people. In addition, the couple plans to spruce up the small attached patio space. Call 243-0200 if you're looking for space for an upcoming function.
Our tips for a cheaper, safer, better tasting and less-filling Crawl
By Laura Marrich
After months of winter hibernation, you're ready to strut your stuff at the Alibi Spring Crawl. In an effort to provide Crawlers with the best spring kick-off ever, we've compiled this handy guide to help you party long into the night. Issues like personal welfare, cop avoidance, cost efficiency and the upcoming swimsuit season all factor into a Crawl we hope will produce the least morning-after remorse.
Houston-based El Paso Corporation hopes to use close ties to the White House to gain drilling access to Valle Vidal. But not without a fight.
By Jeremy Vesbach
Talk to anyone who's spent at least an hour there, or to many of the area residents who have spent decades exploring the area, and they'll tell you the Valle Vidal is one of the most beautiful places in New Mexico. It's got 2,500 elk. It's got wild turkeys. Its got Rio Grande Cutthroat Trout, the second largest Bristlecone Pine Tree in the world, and has even been ranked third best camping area in America (according to GORP.com). It's got excellent mountain biking, an awesome geological feature known as the rock wall, forested peaks, flowing meadows and clear mountain streams. It's got 750,000 Boy Scout alumni with memories of a 12-day outdoor adventure there or at the neighboring Philmont Boy Scout Ranch. More than 2,700 people from around the world apply for a chance to hunt elk there every year.
A new generation of homegrown scientists. With all the brainiac scientists supposedly doing brilliant work over at Sandia Labs, it only made sense to Mayor Marty Chavez that Albuquerque Public Schools somehow build a conduit to all that higher intelligence. So more than 18 months ago, Chavez and the presidents of UNM and New Mexico Tech met with Paul Robinson, Sandia Labs' president, Joey Vigil, the superintendent of Albuquerque Public Schools at the time and local business executives to hatch a plan for a new high-tech high school. It would be a public school where local students with a knack for math and science could refine their skills and carve a career path that might some day boost the local economy.
Missing the point. If you picked up the AlbuquerqueJournal on Friday, April 9, in hopes of getting some solid coverage of Condoleeza Rice's testimony before the 9-11 Commission last week, what you got was a truncated "analysis" originating from the Washington Post.
If we've heard it once, we've heard it a hundred times in the past 10 months: The state's Medicaid budget is spiraling out of control. That's what Gov. Bill Richardson said, the legislative leaders warned, the policy wonks opined and some political pundits editorialized.
At the April 5 meeting, city councilors unanimously passed the administration's latest version of a sex offender bill, which deletes three provisions in a previous bill struck down by the courts. The extension of a moratorium on walls built along streets until new design standards are finished also passed unanimously. Councilor Sally Mayer was absent.
I've had writer's block for the past couple of weeks. At other times when that's happened I have a difficult time pinpointing the reason, but I'm clear what the cause is in this case. It's name is Chuck and he passed away last month. Until I say a few words for him, writing about the blarney of local, state and national politics just isn't going to happen.
Dateline: England—Yana Rodionova has agreed to marry circus performer Jayde Hanson, despite the fact that Hanson has stabbed her three times—once on live television. Rodionova, 23, is the assistant to Hanson, who works as a professional knife thrower. Last year, Hanson tried to break his world record for the number of knives thrown around his assistant. Unfortunately, the stunt—which was filmed for ITV's "This Morning" show—went wrong when one of the knives struck Rodionova in the head. The bloody scene was broadcast to millions of viewers. Hanson blamed the accident on fatigue. Miss Rodionova suffered minor injuries. "It didn't hurt because of the shock of it all," Rodionova recently told the British press. "I felt more sorry for Jayde. There was blood coming out everywhere and he looked so pale." The Russian-born Rodionova admitted, "I fell out of love with him for a couple days afterwards, but I love him again now." Although the mishap was actually the third time Hanson nailed her with one of his knives, she agreed to marry him soon after. "I forgive him. It was only an accident, but I think I will have to teach him to do something else." The couple is expected to tie the knot in May.
Alibi Spring Crawl 2004 is just around the bend (Saturday, April 24, in the heart of Downtown), so the time has come to convey a little information as roughly 12,000 of you gear up for the first major event of spring. As reported two weeks ago, this year's Spring Crawl will feature two national acts: Detroit '80s rockers The Romantics and San Francisco psych-rockers The Brian Jonestown Massacre. In Crawls to come, we'll gradually invite more national acts in an effort to diversify and attract regional and national attention to the events. But rest assured that the Crawls will always emphasize local music. ... Please note that wristband prices have increased on day of show to $20. Do the smart thing and get your cheap, all-access (with valid and proper I.D.) passes in advance through Saturday, April 23, at noon in one of four exciting, convenient ways: buy them on the Alibi website HERE; buy them at Natural Sound in Nob Hill (255-8295); buy them at Alibi Headquarters (411 Central NW); or by them from Ticketmaster (www.ticketmaster.com or 883-7800). Beginning at 12:01 p.m. on Saturday, April 24, a wristband you could have purchased for just 15 bucks will cost you an Andrew Jackson. Pick up next week's issue, on stands Thursday, April 22, for all the details, complete venue schedules, maps, guides and all the Alibi Spring Crawl-related news you'll need. Now, go buy a wristband and prepare to join the fun!
Since the mid-'70s when guitarist Little Charlie Baty and harmonicist Rick Estrin first teamed up, Little Charlie and the Nightcats have been spreading their unique combination of Chicago blues, Texas swing, rockabilly—even surf music—across the States and Europe. And since the release of All the Way Crazy, their Alligator Records debut in 1987, the band have garnered raves from critics and fans alike, as well as a handful of Grammy nominations and a W.C. Handy award along the way. They've served as backing band for contemporary blues legend John Hammond on two phenomenal blues recordings and have toured with everyone from Robert Cray to the Allman Brothers.
Friday, April 16; Stella Blue (21 and over, 9 p.m.): When you think of bluegrass, your mind is drawn across the turnpike into the Delaware River Valley in the heart of New Jersey. OK, so New Jersey's among the last places in America you'd look if you were seeking the best newgrass jam band in the country, but it turns out that the Garden State is the birthplace of that very band: Railroad Earth. The sextet features some of the finest bluegass musicians working today, evidenced by recent invitations to play at some of the most prestigious bluegrass festivals in the world—Telluride and Grey Fox.
Sunday, April 18; Lensic Performing Arts Center (Santa Fe, all ages, 7 p.m.)/Thursday, April 22; Outpost Performance Space (all ages, 7 p.m.): Perhaps the only thing more amazing than listening to sarod master Amjad Ali Khan play his instrument in a setting of traditional accompaniment is listening to him trade licks with jazz virtuoso guitarist Charlie Byrd. Khan's collaboration with Byrd speaks to his ability to play exceptionally in any situation on an instrument that remains largely enigmatic to Westerners. The sarod is a 19-string fretless lute-like device made of teak wood and metal indigenous to India, where Khan is acknowledged as one of India's finest classical musicians and the foremost exponent of the sarod.
Otis Taylor is the most relevant blues artist working today, bar none. His 2003 release, Truth is Not Fiction, turned the blues on its ear with stripped-down acoustic songs that are swollen with emotion and spine-tingling urgency. With Double V, Taylor continues his journey into the darkest corners of American history, telling chilling stories of the struggle for civil rights, social unrest and spiritual longing atop perfectly hewn melodies that mine the rich traditions of African folk, African American spirituals, latter-day acoustic blues and roiling blues rock. Taylor's unconventional instrumentation and approach takes no prisoners.
Deadline Doom—This Thursday, April 15, is the deadline for submitting your short film or video to the Southwest Film Center's First Annual Student Film Festival. All high school and college students from New Mexico are invited to participate. Organizers are looking for films in four categories: Narrative, Music Video, Experimental and Documentary. The films will be shown in a free public film festival, April 29-May 1 at the University of New Mexico's Southwest Film Center. For complete information, including a submission form, log on to swfc.unm.edu/filmfestival.html or call 277-5608.
Sword-swinging sequel segues into surprising storytelling
By Devin D. O'Leary
For all his flaws, Quentin Tarantino is—let's face it—a genius. His positively giddy enthusiasm for the film medium has created some of the wittiest, grittiest cultural touchstones of the last 20 years. His enthusiasm, however, makes him a hard filmmaker to pin down. Right now, Tarantino says he wants to direct the next James Bond film, his World War II drama Inglorious Bastards, his long-promised Vega Brothers project and part of pal Robert Rodriguez' comic book adaptation Sin City. Thanks to his scattershot interests, Q.T.'s only directed five films in the last 17 years. And two of those (Kill Bill: Vol. 1 and Kill Bill: Vol. 2) are actually one movie.
An interview with Kill Bill: Vol. 2 star Michael Madsen
By Devin D. O'Leary
Although he's been in nearly 100 movies (from the acclaimed Thelma & Louise to the action-packed Relic to the family-friendly Free Willy), actor Michael Madsen will be forever burned into the minds of moviegoers as the malevolent Mr. Blonde in Quentin Tarantino's 1992 debut Reservoir Dogs.
I love TV. I really do. But I'm beginning to think that it's some kind of sick, abusive relationship. There are times that TV just doesn't treat me with the slightest ounce of respect. There are times when TV blatantly insults my intelligence. And there are times when I just want to smack TV upside its big, fat cathode ray. Take, for example, “The Swan.”
For the last two decades, the fine folks at the Albuquerque Arts Alliance have honored the best and brightest lights in the Albuquerque arts community by bestowing them with the prestigious Bravos Award. This year the awards ceremony will be held at the Albuquerque Marriott.
When local artist Sherlock Terry recently scored a small grant to help pay for his artistic endeavors, he vowed to spread the wealth among the local alternative arts community. He decided to get a bunch of noncommercial art venues together, most of them centered around Downtown, and organize a gallery hop.
She is, by all accounts, a very wise woman. Georgelle's been answering random questions posed to her by strangers for two solid decades in bookstores from New York to California. You might've seen the questions, and her often witty responses, posted in the window of the Book Stop in Nob Hill or, more recently, in the window of Crane's Bill Books. This Thursday, April 15, Georgelle will make a live appearance at the Guild Cinema to answer your questions about everything from sex to God to the nature of evil to break dancing. The show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10. 255-1848.
Next time you're over at Java Joe's scarfing a bagel and slurping some Joe, cast your eyes to the walls. Two local lady artists, Zelda Gatuskin and Veekee Eha, have decorated the inner sanctum of this famous Downtown hangout with some very killer cool art. Gatuskin supplies some inventive photo collages to the mix, while Eha contributes some animated watercolor paintings. Their show will only run through the month of April, so catch it now before it's too late. For details, call Java Joe's at 765-1514.
Several things led up to this week's story on fish. Overfishing is an issue that has become inextricably linked to any discussion of seafood. Nobody wants to put his favorite fish on the endangered species list but purveyors and restaurants do want to give the people what they like. Omega-3 fatty acids, which I wrote about recently because egg producers have begun to sell omega-3-enhanced eggs, have really come to prominence over the past year, prompting many pundits to recommend salmon (a good source) more than ever. And though a firestorm has been brewing for years over Bush's environmental policies, it's only recently that the public has begun to make firm connections between the administration's policies and their allies (read: campaign donors) in the energy industry. In the past few weeks, we've seen an increase in the number of news stories covering Vice President Dick Cheney's energy task force fiasco. Scientists worldwide have criticized the administrations mishandling of science and specifically their attempts to play down the established link between coal-burning power plants and dangerous levels of mercury in the nation's fish. Which brings us to the dilemma: Is fish the new wonder food or will it slowly kill us all?
The Range Café has finally arrived somewhere in between the Northeast Heights and Bernalillo. That somewhere, specifically, is the former Lindy's location on Menaul, just east of University. After weeks of renovation that transformed the space with the Range's familiar rustic and colorful theme, the café opened last week. Like its siblings, this one serves three meals a day but will surely be a favorite for breakfast (huevos con queso!). Look for a new and interesting beer and wine list at this location. Call 888-1660 for more information.
Using canned salmon to fill up on omega-3 fatty acids
By Laura Marrich
These tasty cakes are high in protein, low in fat and way cheaper to make than their crabby cousins. Plus it's very likely that you've already got these ingredients on hand, making it a cinch to throw together for last minute entertaining. Serve them as an appetizer or side dish, dressed up with a little red chile aioli and some lime wedges.
Wading through the murky waters of omega-3 fatty acids, mercury and PCBs
By Gwyneth Doland
Trying to eat well can be so hard sometimes. Take fish, for example. Since omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to have a wide array of health benefits, more and more Americans are including them in their diets by taking supplements and by eating more fish. Fatty, cold-water fish like salmon and tuna boast high amounts of these beneficial compounds. But the latest furor concerns levels of toxic mercury compounds in fish, especially tuna. Women especially are caught between a dietary Scylla and Charybdis; we're urged to eat more fish for the incredible health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids but warned against eating too much fish or risk terrifying neurological damage to our unborn children.
Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon--It's more expensive than farmed salmon but wild-caught fish have better flavor, less mercury and other toxins and are most environmentally friendly. Look for this stuff cheaper in cans and use it for salmon cakes, burgers and in quiches.