Stayin' Alive--State Fair season is officially over, but the honors bestowed upon this year's homegrown competitors will live on, at the very least, until next September. In the midst of bake-offs and livestock auctions, the New Mexico Music Commission helped reaffirm music's rightful place as a state treasure with the Fair’s second annual talent showcase
The logical response to hearing about Albuquerque’s First Annual Bobbers and Choppers show is: What the hell is it? You hear the word “chopper,” and images of helicopters landing in the jungle, or possibly TC from Magnum PI, come to mind. You hear the word “bobber,” and you think of antiquated haircuts, or maybe apples in a water-filled bucket.
This concert poster was designed, screen printed (on Ingres-style paper!) and hand-delivered by Heath Dauberman at the Little Kiss Records print shop. You can see the band he drums for (Inner Parlors) open for The Drams (ex-Slobberbone), this Wednesday, Oct. 4, at the Launchpad. Cost is $7. We should all aspire to be more like Heath. (LM)
You might remember the Barbie Liberation Organization, or BLO, who in the early ’90s purchased Teen Talk Barbie and talking G.I. Joe dolls, switched their voices and reshelved them. This produced hilarious and poignant results, with Barbie growling “vengeance is mine,” and G.I. Joe's bubbly “math is hard.” Sexism was not eradicated, but made fun of. Children were confused. It was funny. And as one BLO member put it, “The storekeeper makes money twice, we stimulate the economy, the consumer gets a better product and our message gets heard.”
How do you make music that's fresh, but still accessible?
I asked Del Tha Funkee Homosapien, an MC known for 16 years for his lyrical mastery and innovative production. Del, I said, how do you keep it challenging but still easy to get into?
"You can't be uninteresting and be accessible, you feel me?" he said. "You got to be interesting. You got to be entertaining. Otherwise, nobody's going to want to listen to you. I think it's hard to be interesting."
Damn. I had it all wrong. See, I thought of Del as this semi-underground figure, an alternative hip-hop hero who made appearances on all my favorite discs, even before his familiar voice could be found on tracks like the now-famous "Clint Eastwood" by the Gorillaz. I made a list of questions with that figure in mind, and, always, Del's answers defied my expectations. How has hip-hop changed since your first release in 1991? "It hasn't really." What would you change about the music industry? "I don't think nothing's wrong with it." What are you listening to? "Whatever I could get at Target is what I usually get."
You've got to compliment Sage Francis' taste. The longtime poet/MC stumbled over this Orlando-based crew and knew it was something to write home about. Swamburger's spitfire delivery rides the bucking, ever-shifting beats with the confidence of a master. Rich production textures fresh rhythms with cellos, acoustic guitars, piano—instruments that only make cameos on even the best hip-hop albums. Infuse all that with drop-dead gorgeous diva vocals and smart, specific social messages, and these narrators have got themselves one hell of a debut. Burque's real heads shouldn't miss the S.O.S. show at the Launchpad on Saturday, Oct. 14.