Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: December, 2010 (194) Currently Viewing: 11 - 20 of 194

December 2, 2010 at 9:45am

5 Things to Do Today: Tacoma Science Cafe, Flamenco, Sweet Honey In The Rock, Blood Relations, Steve Poltz

Steve Poltz is at Morso in Gig Harbor tonight

THURSDAY, DEC. 2 >>>

1. Talk energy and the economy today at the Harmon Brewery and Restaurant with George Mobus PhD from the University of Washington, Tacoma. Part of the Pacific Science Center and KCTS9 sponsored Tacoma Science Café series, which goes down regularly on the first Thursday of the month, this month's informal chat with an incredibly smart science type will look at "how the economy is like a living thing: both rely on energy." Free, all ages, 7-8:30 p.m.

2. Feel the spirit of Flamenco tonight at the New Frontier when singer Vicente Griego, guitarist Gerado Alcala and dancer Savannah Fuentes do what they do best. These guys are good. Trust us.

3. Massive productions are usually impressive on a lot of levels, but a dead-on a cappella ensemble performance is nothing short of mind blowing. Tonight at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts in Olympia join Sweet Honey In The Rock - who've been doing the a cappella thing on a world renowned level for over 30 years. Founded by Bernice Johnson Reagon, Sweet Honey In The Rock's music is described as "Rooted in a deeply held commitment to create music out of the rich textures of African American legacy and traditions," and featuring a "stunning vocal prowess that captures the complex sounds of Blues, spirituals, traditional gospel hymns, rap, reggae, African chants, Hip Hop, ancient lullabies, and jazz improvisation." Starts at 7:30 p.m.

4. If there's one thing the youth of today are missing out on it's morbid-ass playground rhymes. Where would we be without gems like: "Lizzie Borden took an axe and gave her mother forty whacks. When she found what she had done, she gave her father forty-one"? Theater Artists Olympia officially opens its production of Blood Relations tomorrow, based on the Lizzie Borden story. But EVEN BETTER, tonight there's a $5 preview for the cheapskates out there or those short on holiday cash! Get a taste of T.A.O. tonight at the Midnight Sun in Olympia for cheap. Starts at 8 p.m.

5. The one-of-a-kind Steve Poltz will perform at Morso Wine Bar in Gig Harbor tonight - an impressive booking put together by the also one-of-a-kind Michael ONeill. The Volcano's Ron Swarner has a good Steve Poltz story. The rest of us may not, but we could after tonight. At the very least this is a show to catch.

December 2, 2010 at 9:53am

Night Moves: Bring The Pain Benefit, Steve Poltz, Tablao Flamenco and more ...

In The Mouth Of Hell rocks Hell's Kitchen tonight.

MORE LIVE THAN YOU'LL EVER BE >>>

Hell's Kitchen Tacoma - Downtown. Bring The Pain Benefit For Jaclynn Redmon, with No Living Witness, Deathbed Confession, Bloodhunger, In The Mouth Of Hell, Devils Of Loudon, Martyr Machine. 21+. 8 pm. Donations.

Hi-Fidelity Lounge Bremerton. The Ray Ohls Jazz Trio. New York style jazz. 21+. 8:30 pm. $4.

Morso Wine Bar Gig Harbor. Steve Poltz. 21+. 8 pm. $20.

  • Guitarist Steve Poltz and his band mate, guitarist Robert Driscoll, performed acoustic melodies spiked with ridiculous lyrics as The Rugburns. The most popular song off their debut album Morning Wood, "Me and Eddie Vedder," was a grating contemplation on the glorious possibilities of overdosing in a hotel room alongside Eddie Vedder. After The Rugburns faded, Poltz released several well-received albums and started his own record label. His songs are popular for their clever and often moving lyrics, and his way with an acoustic guitar is impressive. Read my full story here.Ron Swarner

The New Frontier Lounge Tacoma - Dome District. Tablao Flamenco. A night of flamenco featuring singer Vicente Griego, "El Cartucho", guitarist Gerardo Alcala, and dancer Savannah Fuentes. 21+. 8 pm. $18 in advance, students $15.

O'Callahan's Pub & Grill Key Peninsula. Tim Hall Band. 21+. 7 pm. NC.

Rock the Dock Pub & Grill Tacoma - Downtown. Open Mic/Musicians' Night. Hosted by Big D of 9 Pound Hammer. 21+. 9 pm. NC.

Stonegate Pizza Tacoma - South. Billy Stoops Acoustic Jam. 21+. 9 pm.

Tempest Lounge Tacoma - Upper Tacoma. Come Out And Play Open Mic. Hosted by Kim Archer and Nick Sandy. All Ages. 7-10 pm. NC.

Uncle Sam's American Bar & Grill Spanaway. Taco Thursday, with Jerry Miller. 21+. 7 pm. NC.

LINK: More live music tonight in the South Sound

Filed under: Night Moves, Music, Tacoma,

December 2, 2010 at 12:10pm

Major League Dreidel Championships tonight

A NEW SPIN ON HANUKKAH'S FAVORITE GAME<<<

Today kicks off the second day of Hanukkah, and with it Judaism's newest (perhaps only) sporting event -- the Major League Dreidel Championships.

Tonight in Brooklyn hundreds will compete to see who can throw down the longest spinning dreidel. Competitors using names like Spindiana Jones, Goy Wonder, and Oscar de la Menorah will spin the traditional wooden top and swig Jewish-themed beer like Genesis Ale and Messiah Bold (made by Shmaltz's He'brew Beer). Drinking and dreideling... Sounds like a good time for all.

But, if you can't make it to Brooklyn, you can always swing by the Red Hot tonight for Jewbelation -- where you can also get yourself a taste of He'Brew Beer. Originally scheduled for last night, thanks to a shipping mishap Jewbelation at the Red Hot has been rescheduled for tonight. Tapping is set for 6 p.m.

Filed under: Holidays, Food & Drink, Tacoma,

December 2, 2010 at 12:54pm

Bringing the snark

Stuff like this Thomas Kincade painting really pisses Alec off.

ALMOST AN APOLOGY >>>

There are critics who love the snarky comment more than anything. They'd rather fire a witty barb at an actor or artist than see a good play or art exhibit. I don't do that. Or I rarely do. If anything I'm usually overly nice, but once in a while I give in to the temptation to nail someone, and when I do I hear it from readers.

I can praise everyone and never hear from anyone, but let me fail to mention somebody's grandchild who had a no-name part in some ensemble bit and I get emails asking why I slighted him.

Recently I called the painters Bev Doolittle and Thomas Kincade super slick commercial schmucks and a reader rightly called me on it. I shouldn't be so nasty. That was totally unnecessary and out of character for me, but it felt good. Some folks beg for derision.

I would not be so critical of unknown local artists who were struggling to gain acceptance in the art world. If they showed promise but were not yet ready for primetime I'd criticize them in the manner of a helpful professor. If they were really, really bad I just wouldn't review them at all. But so-called artists who gain widespread popularity and make a lot of money by creating pictures that are slick, commercial and gimmicky, and which appeal to cheap sentiment and are masterfully marketed, should be called out. They muddy the waters of art.

The public is easily duped. Show them enough of that stuff and they begin to believe that's what real art is. Why bother to go to a museum and see the real masters and maybe have to stretch their minds and open their hearts in order to grasp and begin to appreciate what may be new and off-putting to them when they can go to that gallery in the mall and pick up a lovely landscape that looks like the Christmas cards that enchanted them in their childhood? Never mind that it's mass produced.

It's easy to like gimmicky or sentimental art. It's much harder to like a Frances Bacon or a Pablo Picasso or even a Caravaggio. Those demand long and careful study. But the rewards are much greater for those willing to put in the effort. The commercial exploitation of stuff that's easy to like inhibits people's ability to learn to like the truly worthy art. They listen to Bob Denver instead of Bob Dylan, to Lawrence Welk instead of Beethoven. They read cheap romances rather than Shakespeare and Faulkner.

So what? Let ‘em read and look at and listen to what they like and the lovers of Shakespeare and Beethoven and Caravaggio can read and look at and listen to what they like. That sounds logical enough, but the commercialization of lesser art stifles greater art. The next generation's Faulkner can't even get his book published and the next generation's Caravaggio can't even get a gallery show because the purveyors of art are so busy making money off the likes of Doolittle and Kincade that they won't take a chance on the next generation's budding geniuses.

That's why I sometimes get snarkier than perhaps I should. But I try to save it for the ones who are laughing all the way to the bank.

Filed under: Arts, Culture,

December 2, 2010 at 4:04pm

The Weekend Hustle: The Cash Flow Show III, Doxology, Sounds of the Season, plus the boring lives of our writers

THE LOWDOWN ON WHAT'S UP THIS WEEKEND >>>

WEATHER REPORT

Friday: Partly sunny, hi 46, lo 33

Saturday: Partly sunny, hi 43, lo 34

Sunday: Partly sunny, noticing a pattern here, hi 55, lo 38


>>> THURSDAY, DEC. 2-FRIDAY, DEC. 3: THE CASH FLOW SHOW III

This year marks Cash Flow Show III, but the package is as tight as ever. Local artists you know and love, slinging a bounty of artistic goodness priced at $25 or less, will set up shop and give you an even better-than-normal excuse to skip the malls: Help Grit City's creative types enjoy a holiday season that includes more than pocket lint and Top Ramen. Because, you know, you're supporting their work with actual money. It's a win-win.

  • Mad Hat Tea Company, 1130 Commerce St., Tacoma, 253.441.2111

>>> SATURDAY, DEC. 4: DOXOLOGY

The Revolution is coming. No, I'm not talking about when anarchy takes control, the roads devolve into some sort of Mad Max scenario and R.R. Anderson finally gets the recognition he deserves; rather, I'm talking about Doxology's new record, The Revolution, which the band will officially celebrate the release of Saturday at Jazzbones. Always, ALWAYS a crowd pleaser, there's simply no reason Doxology's brand of ear-friendly, modern, new school pop rock shouldn't steal the show and carry the night. Put simply, Doxology, led by frontman Luke McPherson, is the kind of band the ultra-cool may not have the balls to endorse, but there's no doubt the band has mastered its craft and has all the tools necessary to sweat up the dance floor. Expect a lot of bodies, and a lot of new tunes from a band Tacoma has shown definite affection for in the past. 

  • Jazzbones, with Roman Holiday, 8 p.m., $10-$12, 2803 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.396.9169

>>> SATURDAY, DEC.4-SUNDAY, DEC. 5: SOUNDS OF THE SEASON

Fight as you may, it's officially "the season." Kids are already sitting on various Santa laps at malls across the country, and A Christmas Story is probably already re-running on TBS. The Tacoma Symphony Orchestra and Chorus will spend Saturday and Sunday at the Pantages Theater doling out "beloved" seasonal music, a few "familiar classics" and a maxed-out credit card full of sing-along enjoyment for the whole family. Here's one holiday favorite undeserving of a bah humbug.

  • Pantages Theater, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, 2:30 p.m. Sunday, $24-$77, 901 Broadway, Tacoma, 253.5890


>>> WHERE OUR STAFF IS GOING

MATT DRISCOLL Editor (aka - the guy to blame)
So much to do, so little time ... We've got a birthday party for a four year old to attend Saturday afternoon - which jibes nicely with the Apple Cup, let me tell you what. The parents at our fancy preschool just don't give football the respect it deserves. After that, we'll Christmas tree hunt, purchase pallets of stuff at Costco, run to Fife so I can buy cigarettes, write letters to Santa, avoid the malls, and generally lay low - in no particular order. Sunday evening I'll be stopping by the Northwest Convergence Zone Podcast to catch up with Darrell Fortune and the gang once again - my monthly appearance on the show to pimp the Cup Check column.

RON SWARNER Publisher
Friday night I'll hangout with tattoo types at the Blue Mouse Theatre getting loaded on rum punch and learning about the life of Sailor Jerry, the aesthetic vanguard who valued and embraced the mastery of Japanese tattooing. Saturday, after I wrestle with outdoor Christmas lights, the Lovely Kate and I will check out Kim Archer at Maxwell's Speakeasy, then head over to the Girl Trouble Christmas Show at the New Frontier to see how the holiday season is treating KP's physique. I hope the band will hurl Wig Out magazines into the crowd. Sunday, I'll drop by the Friends of the Holidays show at The Swiss.

REV. ADAM MCKINNEY Features Writer
Friday, I'll probably be seeing Hori Smoku Sailor Jerry at the Blue Mouse. It is advertised as being 21+, which I hope means that there will be lots of rum available. Afterward, I'll hustle (pun!) on down to the New Frontier for the Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside show. She was a definite highlight at Squeak & Squawk, so I'm excited to see her again. As for the rest of the weekend, I can assure you that booze will be involved.

NIKKI TALOTTA Features Writer
This Saturday my baby boy is turning five! Lots of craziness going down at Chuck E Cheeses. Cake, pizza, creepy mechanical rock show, and the newest edition - a booth where the birthday kid can try and catch as many flying tickets as possible. If I survive the birthday bash, Sunday promises an adult shindig worth celebrating! My work X-mas party - where fancy clothes, family style Italian dinner, red wine and secret Santas all come together in a glorious gathering of love and mayhem. Cheers!

JOANN VARNELL Theater Critic
After my first 3 days of post maternity-leave work I'll be attending the Beautiful Angle holiday party/fundraiser at King's books on Friday night. Then I plan to sit with my son by the fire, drink cider and bask in the glow of Christmas tree lights. Also on the docket is a nap, shopping for our annual Christmas tree ornaments and pretending I'm just a wee more exciting.

JENNIFER JOHNSON: Lifestyle/Leisure Writer
A Christmas Carol at ACT Theatre in Seattle Friday. Saturday morning I'm taking advantage of free admission for Bank of America account holders day at Tacoma Art Museum followed by violin holiday concert and Festival of the Nativity that night. Sunday I'll go back to TAM for a little bit of Winterfest before heading to church.

CHRISTIAN CARVAJAL: Theater Critic
Well, Weekly Volcano, I'm glad you asked.  I have two rehearsals for TLT's Frost/Nixon this week, as I'm playing Bob Zelnick.  Friday is my girlfriend's office Christmas party, so I plan to behave myself (at least more than her boss).  Saturday I'm seeing Blood Relations in the Midnight Sun, and Sunday afternoon it's off to OLT for Jacob Marley's Christmas Carol.

STEVE DUNKELBERGER Meat Market Correspondent
I will be out and about with the kiddos with a possible trip to the Blue Mouse Theater Saturday to see "Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole."

STEPH DEROSA Columnist
I am so busy this weekend that there is a possibility my head will explode.  Friday night Kate Swarner and I will be prepping gingerbread houses on Joint Base Lewis-McChord for the Children's Museum of Tacoma's annual Gingerbread Jamboree.  Saturday Kate and I will return bright and early with our friend Lindsey to JBLM for a day full of frosting, candy, and glorious gingerbread house decorating with families who have loved ones out of the country for the holidays.  Saturday evening we will attend yet another birthday party (I should buy stock in Barbies), and Sunday my family will be attending the original Gingerbread Jamboree at Hotel Murano without me because I will be workin' at my favorite beer store, 99 Bottles!  I'm hoping to annoy my new 99 Bottles co-workers by overusing the beer phrase "brew-ha-ha".  Let's see how long it takes.

ALEC CLAYTON: Columnist
Going to see "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" at Lakewood Playhouse.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

December 3, 2010 at 7:23am

I'm the Foursquare Holiday Mayor of Mad Hat Tea Company!

Photography by Steph DeRosa

BANDITO BETTY LOU WHO LEAP OF THE DAY >>>

"Stay seated Tobin Ropes. I'm the mutha elfing Foursquare Holiday Mayor of Mad Hat Tea Company now!" screamed Bandito Betty Lou Who – our very happy friend who leaps for us on Spew. "Put this leap in your cup and read it. This leap is so money!"

Read more...

December 3, 2010 at 9:19am

Mistledole: Catherine Place

Peg Murphy, executive director of Catherine Place (pink sweater) leads a "Kitchen Table Talk." Courtesy photo

DONATE TO A LOCAL CHARITY >>>

There's no better way to support your community than supporting your neighbors in need, especially during the holiday season. We'll feature local charities on Spew throughout this holiday season with links to donate your money, supplies and time.

Give the karmic wheel a spin for today's charity focus:

Catherine Place

923 S. Eighth St., Tacoma
253.572.3547

Editor's note: Today's Mistledole focus is written by Chiara Wood, a member of Catherine Place's WomanSpirit Circle, and collector of "Gathering Our Stories" – the love notes sent to us by the women we serve and convene with.

"When women thrive, all of society benefits and succeeding generations are given a better start in life." – Kofi Annan, former U.N. Secretary General

Catherine Place was established in 2000 by the Tacoma Dominican Community to be "an oasis for women," an urban center for women's personal growth and spirituality.  Our mission is to improve the quality of life for women, particularly women in poverty, in transition or facing the daily challenges associated with violence, loss, unemployment, immigration and illness. 

Read more...

December 3, 2010 at 9:33am

5 Things to Do Today: Sailor Jerry, artist market at Fulcrum, Student Orchestra of Greater Olympia, Lakewood tree lighting, Collaborative Works Jazz at C.I. Shenanigans

FRIDAY, DEC. 3 >>>

1. It's Sailor Jerry time at the Blue Mouse tonight. Can you say free rum? Check details here.

2. Tacoma's acclaimed Fulcrum Gallery hosts its second annual artists market today and tomorrow - One Offs, B-Sides and Studio Gems. Names like Trevor Dickson, Jeremy Gregory, Mindy Barker, Geof Wegg, Kristin Giordano, Elise Richman, Zoe Johnson, Oliver Doriss, Amir Shawn and Zach Marvic will be featured. This will be good.

3. Hey, it's the holiday season. There's a decent chance you could find yourself at the Barnes and Noble in Olympia on Black Lake Boulevard today. If this happens, be sure to check in with the Student Orchestra of Greater Olympia, performing at 6 p.m. today and tomorrow.

4. It's time for the 15th Annual holiday festival and tree lighting ceremony - from 4-7 p .m. today at Lakewood City Hall. Yes, Santa will be there. The tree lights at 4:30 p.m., Santa arrives at 4:45 p.m. I'm sure he's on a tight schedule this time of year, so plan accordingly - and dress warm.

5. Today marks the first day of C.I. Shenanigans foray into live music every Friday and Saturday from 8 - 11 p.m. Enjoy yourself with Collaborative Works Jazz on Ruston's beautiful waterfront.

December 3, 2010 at 10:57am

Night Moves: Ghost Feet, Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside, 2112, Roy Douglas, Duke Robillard and others ...

Stepkid will rock the Northern space in Olymp;ia tonight. Photo courtesy of sexypeople-blog.com

A GIANT SANTA SACK OF LIVE MUSIC TONIGHT >>>

A Rhapsody In Bloom Florist and Cafe Latte Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. Songs Of The Season Holiday Benefit, with Roy Douglas. Proceeds benefit the Food Connection food bank in Tacoma. All Ages. 7 pm. $5 or 3 cans of food.

Bailey's Motor Inn Olympia - Eastside. Black Top Demon. 21+. 8 pm.

Beyond the Bridge Cafe Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. Open Mic Night. All Ages. 7 pm. NC.

C.I. Shenanigan's Tacoma - Ruston Way. Collaborative Works Jazz Trio. 21+. 8 pm. NC.

Hell's Kitchen Tacoma - Downtown. Bedside Manner CD Release Show, with High Noon Horizon, Death First, Basic Radio, Alabaster. 21+. 8 pm. $5.

Jazzbones Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. Duke Robillard. 21+. 8 pm. $15-$18.

JR's Hideaway Belfair. The Woodies. 21+. 9 pm.

Mandolin Cafe Tacoma - Central. Bob Crow. All Ages. 6 pm. NC. 41 Miles. All Ages. 8:30 pm. NC.

Maxwell's Speakeasy Tacoma. Lance Buller Trio. All Ages. 7-10 pm. No Cover.

The New Frontier Lounge Tacoma - Dome District. Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside, Basemint, Library. 21+. 9 pm.

  • When Sallie Ford came to the New Frontier for Squeak & Squawk earlier this year, I think the audience collectively fell in love with her. In addition to being just about the sweetest person in the world, Sallie Ford is an amazingly capable vocalist. Referring to herself as a "belter," Ford's voice is perfectly suited to the type of vintage soul, roots-rock and blues swagger that she and her band, the Sound Outside, have mastered. - Rev. Adam McKinney

Northern Olympia - Downtown. No Clouds, Ghost Feet, Sea Of Oaks, Stepkid. All Ages. 8 pm.

  • Ghost Feet don't tread as lightly as their name might imply, but they do skip across subgenre boundaries with the ectoplasmic ease of something truly spectral. Theirs is richly textured electronic music, with resounding, chiming melodies and cascading bittersweet synth lines slipping and sliding around an ultra-dense carbon core of snare-happy, Boards of Canada-style beatwork. Wonkier bleeps and bloops - along with interjections of cut-up vocal samples - operate at their own figurative stratum entirely. Their stuff takes its cues from enough unique, notable ‘tronic talents (some Prefuse 73 here, maybe a little Lymbyc Systym there) that it feels fresh and original, and not too indebted to any one of its inspirations. They're well-matched on this bill by Sea of Oaks, Stepkid and the jazzy shoegazers in No Clouds. - Jason Baxter

O'Callahan's Pub & Grill Key Peninsula. Mark Defrenes. 21+. 8 pm. NC.

The Old General Store Steakhouse and Saloon Roy. Junkyard Jane. 21+. 9 pm.

Traditions Cafe and World Folk Art Olympia - Downtown. Dana Lyons. All Ages. 8 pm. $5-$10.

Vanity Tacoma. 2112 A Tribute to RUSH with special guests the Kari Ehli Band. 21+. 9:30 pm. $5.

Uncle Sam's American Bar & Grill Spanaway. All Male Revue Show. 21+. 9 pm.

LINK: More live music tonight in the South Sound

Filed under: Night Moves, Music, Olympia, Tacoma,

December 3, 2010 at 12:06pm

This week's Volcano music section

Doughkain and Gazmo the Gr8 talk mixtapes and the Internet inside this week's Volcano

WHAT'S WAITING FOR YOU IN PRINT AND ONLINE >>>

If you haven't already picked up the brand-spankin' new issue of the Weekly Volcano that hit streets yesterday, well, shame on you.

Luckily, you still have time to regroup. Here's a sneak peak at the goodness in store inside this week's Volcano music section ...

Dick Dale returns to Hell's Kitchen

"I play the guitar like I play the drums, which was my original instrument," guitar god and trained martial artist, Dick Dale, reveals. "In a Shaolin temple, they never allow you to touch the skin of a drum for five years, until you can tongue what you're going to play. When you learn through tonguing, it actually tattoos muscle memory on your brain with your mouth, through your hands ... I do everything on the one beat, and that's how the Shaolins do it."

Hot Panda and joyous booty shaking

"[Before starting Hot Panda] I did more theater stuff," says Hot Panda's Chris Connelly. "I did improv, and I did some comedy, and went to film school - just dabbled in a lot of different arty things for a while, and only decided to try music last. I think it's worked the best so far."

The power of mixtapes

"Mixtapes show if you can rap or not," Gazmo the Gr8 explains. He hopes that his mixtapes will generate such a buzz that when his album comes out there will already be a demand. "One day when I put out an album there will be x amount of people who say, ‘Oh I already know Gazmo. He's straight. I can buy that.'"

Doxology

Always, ALWAYS a crowd pleaser, there's simply no reason Doxology's brand of ear-friendly, modern, new school pop rock shouldn't steal the show and carry the night. Expect a lot of bodies, and a lot of new tunes from a band Tacoma has shown definite affection for in the past. - Matt Driscoll

Filed under: All ages, Tacoma, Olympia, Music,

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