Alibi Volume 21, Number 09
March 1, 2012
Shit Burqueñas say
Absentee landlord saps city resources
Sultry, Latin-flavored cartoon is a treat for eyes and ears
One of the more obscure films to pop into this year’s Best Animated Feature category at the Academy Awards was the Cuban-born cartoon Chico & Rita. (It lost out to the American-made Rango.) The roots of the film’s existence can be traced back to director Fernando Trueba (one of three directors credited on Chico & Rita). Trueba produced and directed the Latin jazz documentary Calle 54. It was on that watershed 2000 film that Trueba met legendary Cuban pianist/bandleader Bebo Valdés. Valdés provides the music as well as the loose biographical inspiration for Chico & Rita.
“Awake” on NBC
For whatever inexplicable reasons, Americans are becoming pop culturally obsessed with alternate worlds / parallel universes. It’s cropping up in films (Mike Cahill’s navel-gazing astronomy lesson Another Earth) and in television (FOX’s mind-bending mystery series “Fringe”). Heck, even venerable kids’ comic book “Life With Archie” has dedicated the last year or so to exploring two increasingly dark parallel existences—one in which Archie married Betty and one in which he married Veronica. (I’m not even kidding.) Now, NBC goes whole hog with the concept with the speculative cop drama “Awake.”
The fifth annual Taos Shortz Film Festival cuts loose March 1 through 4 in Northern New Mexico. This year’s four-day fest features more than 70 short films from around the globe. There will be panel discussions, networking parties and more than 120 visiting filmmakers. The filmmakers come courtesy of the 48 Hour Film Project International Filmapalooza, which is running concurrently with this year’s Taos Shortz. Screenings take place at the Taos Center for the Arts. Panel discussions (which are free and open to the public) are at the TurnStyle Gallery. It all kicks off on Thursday afternoon with a collection of local shorts straight out of Taos County. Things wrap up on Sunday with the 48 Hour awards ceremony at 3:30 p.m. and the Taos Shortz awards at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 for each block or $80 for the full festival “Taos Hmmmm” pass.
The Week in Sloth
Joyful Altruistic Metaphysical Ageless Lover Seeks Knowledge Internally
Jamalski is an internationally known MC who helped pioneer the reggae/hip-hop crossover genre both as a member of the Boogie Down Productions crew and as a prolific solo artist with hits such as “Jump, Spread Out.” His accomplished beats cover the gamut of hip-hop and dance styles. As long as it’s an underground scene, Jamalski’s into it. After spending most of the past decade living and playing in Europe, last year Jamalski moved his headquarters back to his hometown, New York City, and has adopted Albuquerque as his secondary base of U.S. operations. The Alibi spoke with him over the phone.
Michael Anthony, Bobby Shew and friends celebrate guitarist’s innovations
Using a newfangled contraption, the electric guitar, and a mesmerizing facility for improvisation, Charlie Christian, born in 1916, helped transform the role of the guitar in jazz. The Oklahoma City native first made his mark in the swing era, joining Benny Goodman’s sextet and orchestra in 1939. (As the third black man hired by Goodman, he helped bury bandstand segregation.) He then helped transform jazz itself, collaborating with the likes of Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker and Thelonious Monk as they worked out the rules of a brand-new musical language: bebop. He managed to accomplish all of this in just 25 years, passing away in 1942, a victim of tuberculosis.
Sult (Norwegian electro acoustic improv), Brachiator (experimental sounds by New Mexico’s Mark Weaver, Ben Wright and Christian Pincock), Alchemical Burn vs. AGL (drone competition) and DJ Caterwaul (vinyl records) constitute a far-out show at Moldspores (923 11th Street NW) on Sunday, March 4, at 7 p.m. Admission is $5 and all ages are welcome. (Jessica Cassyle Carr)
Canadian classic is youthful and charming at ALT
Even if you weren’t a redheaded orphan girl brought up on a farm near the turn of the 20th century, Anne of Green Gables will likely remind you of your childhood—of best friends, the realm of make believe and accidental drunkenness.
Metropolitan food truck parks in Placitas
Like many culinary school graduates (Seattle Culinary Institute, class of ’99), Chef Kimberley Calvo wanted her own restaurant. But Calvo realized it was a bad idea. “The more I looked into what it entails in terms of money and financial backing, it wasn’t feasible in this economy,” she says.
ARIES (March 21-April 19): At one point in his book The Divine Comedy, the Italian poet Dante is traveling through purgatory on his way to paradise. American poet T.S. Eliot describes the scene: "The people there were inside the flames expurgating their errors and sins. And there was one incident when Dante was talking to an unknown woman in her flame. As she answered Dante's questions, she had to step out of her flame to talk to him, until at last she was compelled to say to Dante, 'Would you please hurry up with your questions so I can get on with my burning?'" I bring this to your attention, Aries, because I love the way you've been expurgating your own errors and sins lately. Don't let anything interfere with your brilliant work. Keep burning till you're done. (Source: "A New Type of Intellectual: Contemplative Withdrawal and Four Quartets," by Kenneth P. Kramer.)