Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: September, 2013 (79) Currently Viewing: 61 - 70 of 79

September 25, 2013 at 7:05am

5 Things To Do Today: Voodoo Organist, Iittala glass birds, artist Sean Orlando, logging film and more ...

The Voodoo Organist performs at Jazzbones tonight.

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 25 2013 >>>

1. You say you want some spooky?  Having started the journey as a one-dude act, using machines to complement his organ skills, The Voodoo Organist - a Los Angeles artist sometimes known as Scott Wexton, who channels Screamin' Jay Hawkins, Devo, the Doors and Lon Chaney to conjure a circus of lounge sounds peppy and dark - now travels the country with drummer Robin Kennon, which is an improvement drastically evident live. That said, the wail of the Voodoo Organist's Hammond and the moan of synths will get inside you at 8 p.m. in Jazzbones - and it just might wreck you for good.

2. In recognition of the 10 year anniversary of the glassblowing partnership between Museum of Glass and Finland's Iittala, Inc., the exhibition "An Experiment in Design Production: The Enduring Birds of Iittala" pays special attention to the history of the Iittala glass factory in Nuutajärvi, Finland. Like other recent closures in Europe, such as the Waterford Crystal factory in Ireland, Nuutajärvi has reached a point of no return and is likely to close its doors sometime in 2014. The exhibition opens at 10 a.m. at the Museum of Glass and runs through January 12, 2014.

3. Meet artist Sean Orlando, the artist commissioned through a national call-to-artists to create artwork for Tacoma's 26th and Pacific Avenue gateway intersection. An Artist Fellow at the de Young Museum and a celebrated East Bay (San Francisco) surrealistic, steampunk, high-tech, kenetic sculptor, Orlando has created some amazing public and private art. See samples of Orlando's past work, provide input, and learn more about the project from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at Anthem Coffee, 1911 Pacific Ave. and another from 6-7:30 p.m. at 301 Puyallup Ave.

4. On the northern reaches of our continent, towering mountains are the only skyscrapers, lit until late at night in summer, then darkened in winter. Pristine waters serve moose caribou, and three species of bears in an unbroken landscape. Jonathan Waterman has spent decades exploring these awe-inspiring spaces. Meet hih, have him sign Northern Exposures: An Adventuring Career in Stories & Images and watch his slide presentation at 7 p.m. in the Olympic Room of the Tacoma Public Library Main Branch in downtown Tacoma.

5. "I'm a lumberjack and I'm okay / I sleep all night and I work all day I cut down trees, I eat my lunch / I go to the lavatory." We're 89 percent sure Monty Python's "The Lumberjack Song" won't be included in Peter Reid's lecture at 7:30 p.m. in the Olympia Timberland Library. Reid, a member of the Schafer family, will show recently restored films of 1926 logging operations of one of the largest lumber businesses in the Northwest. After the 45-minute film, Reid and Barbara Seal Ogle will talk about their just-released book, Schafer State Park. We are 94 percent sure the two speakers would enjoy seeing you dressed in a plaid flannel shirt, some old jeans and boots, snapping suspenders and yanking on a fake beard. That's OK!

LINK: Wednesday, Sept. 25 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 25, 2013 at 9:56am

Eat This Now: MSM Deli Club

MSM Deli Club is more of a chick's sandwich.

What makes the Magical Sandwich Makers, or MSM, so friggin' fabulous? It could be its unassuming exterior and its eternal jumbled readerboard that screams hole in the wall, podunk convenience store. We do, after all, affectionately refer to ourselves as the Gritty City and have a love affair with blue-collar scruff. Most likely, you can attribute the magic with the behemoth sandwiches built inside said scruff of an establishment.

Though Mike's Deluxe is most popular sandwich (it reached the final four in the Weekly Volcano's Tournament of Sandwiches), especially among the dudes who are looking to go big or go home, my personal recommendation is the Deli Club ($6.39). A 6-inch French roll lays the foundation for this sammie. The bread is fresh, with that balance of light golden crust on the outside with soft goodness inside. Turkey breast, crispy bacon and cheddar cheese concoct the meat and potatoes of it. Add sliced onions, shreds of crisp lettuce, tomato, sprouts, mayonnaise and, of course, avocado and you have a perfectly classic deli club. It's nothing fancy, it's just done right.

MSM doesn't skimp on the fillings; this sandwich can easily be shared. Onsite you'll also find beverages - including beer - and snacks such as chips and candy to complete the meal deal. I recommend calling your order as the line is out the door more often than not.

Just the mention of MSM demands I stuff one in my face right now.

DELI CLUB, 8 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, MSM Deli, 2220 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.272.4814

LINK: South Sound Restaurant Guide

Filed under: Food & Drink, Tacoma,

September 25, 2013 at 10:49am

Interview: Ian MacKaye on The Evens, solo bills and Olympia

The Evens / photo credit: Harumi Aida

The Evens are the sort of band that in many circles needs no introduction. The band, consisting of former Fugazi and Minor Threat member - and owner of the venerable indie mainstay Dischord Records - Ian MacKaye, along with Amy Farina of the Warmers, has been creating music together for the past decade. Their latest album, The Odds, is immediate and plangent. The duo returns to Olympia for the first time in seven years to play a solo bill at the Eagles Hall Saturday, Sept. 28.

"Amy and I decided early on that we wanted to play shows outside of rock clubs," MacKaye said. "It's not ‘let's shut down the clubs.' I don't mind them; I go to them," he continued. "So our idea was to play quieter, open new spaces. We bring our own PA, our own lights; we want our shows to be over by the time most shows begin. It's nice. We like it."

Of course, the idea of a single band and an early show may sound odd to fans used to seeing three or four bands late into the night.

"Some people say, ‘Oh it's just for older people,'" MacKaye said. "Fuck that! I don't see that. In the early days, the early punk rock days in D.C., we used to have matinees and they were epic. People loved them. It wasn't because we were old or we were kids, but that music should be everywhere at every time."

For a town that has held shows in alleys and public libraries, the concept doesn't seem so odd.


September 26, 2013 at 7:51am

5 Things To Do Today: Le Diner en Blanc, Medieval model, Tacoma Playing Cards, Kareem Kandi and more ...

Wear white, eat potato salad and celebrate First Night Tacoma tonight at Wright Park.

THURSDAY, SEPT. 26 2013 >>>

1. First Night Tacoma is hosting a pop-up picnic from 6-8 p.m. at Wright Park, asking diners to wear as much white as possible. The picnic, title Le Diner en Blanc, grabs inspiration from the Parisians, which began in Paris in 1988, when a man named Francois Pasquier arranged to picnic with family and friends in a public park. To easily find one another in the crowd, all participants wore white, and a chic phenomenon was born. Pasquier's picnic has since become an international phenomenon, and, in September, Tacoma. First Night Tacoma hosts the picnic to share its New Year's Eve plans, as well as raise funds for the downtown Tacoma Dec. 31 celebration. Organizers will provide tables, linens and performance snippets of scheduled First Night acts, including L. Lisa Lawrence fire dancing, Adam Martin with his Luminares and Benjamin Doerr and Lydia Ramsey of St. Paul de Vence. You need to bring picnic goodies, a white tablecloth and yourself - dress head to toe in white. Oh, and $10 as it's a fundraiser. Visit firstnighttacoma.org to purchase tickets.

The Tacoma Academy of Fine Art will host a male model in Medieval costume for its open studio session. From 6-9 p.m., and for $15, you have a chance to sketch a man who just defeated the Orcs and has a few minutes before he eats his giant turkey leg without silverware and chases ill-clad wenches.

A selection of original art from the inaugural deck of Tacoma Playing Cards is on view at Tacoma's STAR Center until Oct. 26. Created in 2012, the Tacoma Playing Cards Blue Deck features 54 Tacoma locations and stories created by some of Tacoma's best visual artists. You may have appreciated these incredible images while playing your favorite card game, but you'll have a chance to see Tacoma Playing Cards on a much larger scale and have a chance to meet the creative force behind the works. An artist reception with wine, small bites and poster giveaways will be held from 6:30-8 p.m. at STAR Center.

4. Lakewood Playhouse celebrates its 75th anniversary with a stage production of Arsenic and Old Lace. Without giving too much away, let's say it features a pair of charming old aunties, the Brewster sisters, who welcome potential boarders with something more than a casual drink. Tonight, at 8 p.m., is a special pay-what-you-can actors's benefit show. Read Christian Carvajal's full review of Arsenic and old Lace in the Music and Culture section.

5. Besdies being all fancy, the Hotel Murano is dang smart. It knows a good thing when it hears it. The Kareem Kandi Band is back to fill the lobby with jazz from 8:30 to 11:30 p.m.

LINK: Thursday, Sept. 26 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 26, 2013 at 10:59am

Keeping Up With The Coffeehouses: Sippin' Out to reopen

Hailey Gift is one of the more badass baristas in T-town. She's young, but at just 18 she scored a spot to compete in Seattle's Northwest Barista Classic in July 2013. She's most recently worked at the new Café Brosseau, but soon will go for the gold - with a café of her own. Well, mostly her own. She'll have a 40 percent stake in the business and will manage the day-to-day operations.

The café is next to Flippin' Out Burgers - snappily titled Sippin' Out - on South 12th Street. Gift has a vision for the sure-to-be hotspot - the first gourmet drive-thru in Tacoma.

"The big bosses name is Marina Lomis who started the coffee business up at the beginning of this year," says Gift. "But, due to some issues in management, things didn't work out and the shop has sat empty for a few months. I got in touch with her through a few connections and after discussing some shared values; she decided that she wanted to bring me in. This September I was told to go and buy anything I need and remodel however I feel is best."


September 26, 2013 at 11:39am

Plan Ahead: Olympia Fall Arts Walk

A scene from the 2013 Olympia Spring Arts Walk. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Before entertainment moves indoors, and the comedy and theater season swings into play (check out our Fall Arts Guide), Olympia likes to have one more outdoor celebration - Fall Arts Walk.

Nearly 100 businesses will open their doors and sidewalks to artists, musicians and performers for two days, allowing Olympia to showcase, network and entertain.

A stroll through town with or without an interactive guide will promise to be a treasure trove of delight. More than 250 artists will saturate the town with creativity.

Look for art in all places; perhaps stumble across a wine tasting while observing oil paintings. Expect street musicians, live art and surprising mediums.

Stephanie Johnson, arts and events manager for the city of Olympia, says, "Arts Walk is always new" because, while she provides the framework, it's the businesses and artists that get to collaborate in new and exciting ways.

OLYMPIA FALL ARTS WALK, 5-10 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., downtown Olympia, free admission, 360.753.8380

See Also

Check out Muskrat Ramble" during the Olympia Fall Arts Walk

September 27, 2013 at 7:19am

5 Things To Do Today: Zombies, "Grabbers," Linda Tillery, Sonny Landreth and more ...

If you have zombie issues, consider hanging out at Tacoma's LaQuinta Inns & Suites this weekend.

FRIDAY, SEPT. 27 2013 >>>

1. Zombies are taking over T-town - and no - not the bath salt eating kind, but the kind that in real life are fun-loving people who want to get gory for a good cause. The Tacoma Zombie Festival and Preparedness Expo is back, with a new name - QZ-CON - and a military-focused sci-fi convention that combines the popular theme of surviving the zombie apocalypse with old school rockabilly punk. For the next three days at La Quinta Inns & Suites, expect a refugee camp military vehicle display, kid's zombie hunter costume contest, zombie freeze tag, open invitational writer's slush party, with music by The Hot Roddin' Romeos and Back Alley Barbers Saturday. This is a benefit for the Wounded Warrior Project.

2. On Erin Island, an idyllic fishing village off the coast of Ireland, the crew of a fishing boat disappears, whales start appearing dead on the shore, a local lobsterman catches a strange tentacled creature in his trap. Soon it becomes clear there's something big out there, and that it's hungry. It's time to rally the villagers, arm the troops ... and head to the pub. Grabbers opens today at The Grand Cinema. Read Jared Lovrak's review here.

3. Jeff Torlina, Ph.D., associate professor of sociology in Utah, will launch the 2013-2014 Saint Martin's University Harvie Social Justice Lecture Series with a talk that will underscore the importance of social justice in creating sustainable peace at 4 p.m. in the University's Harned Hall.

4. Instead of just one weekend, the Broadway Center is expanding its Tacoma Fall Free For All festival throughout the year, which kicks off at 7:30 p.m. when Linda Tillery and the Cultural Heritage Choir performs at the Rialto Theater. A San Francisco based vocalist and percussionist, Tillery has explored African drumming, blues and African American roots music. With the choir, she focuses on spirituals, field hollers and black folk music rooted in the South.

5. Southwest Louisiana-based guitarist, songwriter, and singer Sonny Landreth is a musician's musician. His unorthodox blues slide guitar style comes from the manner in which he simultaneously plays slide and makes fingering movements on the fretboard. Landreth, who has an easygoing personality, can play it all, like any good session musician. Watch how it is done at 8 p.m. in Jazzbones.

LINK: Friday, Sept. 27 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 27, 2013 at 9:15am

Words & Photos: Le Diner en Blanc Tacoma

L. Lisa Lawrence brought color to last night's Le Diner en Blanc at Tacoma's Wright Park. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

The cultural and epicurean phenomena known as Le Diner en Blanc started in Paris 25 years ago as a posh, alfresco dinner for friends. Francois Pasquier arranged to picnic with family and friends in a public park. To easily find one another in the crowd, all participants wore white, and a chic phenomenon was born. Since then it has spread across the globe to major cities like New York, London, Singapore, Sidney and Barcelona - and last night it found its way to Tacoma, thanks to the folks behind the First Night Tacoma celebration who staged the community builder and fundraiser.

Guests donning full white suits and top hats and white evening gowns, including Ryan Loiselle's white "Slut" T-shirt, dined on white tablecloth tables and white picnic blankets in front of the W.W. Seymour Conservatory. Guests brought their own food, white picnic baskets, white cutlery, white stemware and white napkins. The only objects not white were Adam Martin's colorful stars dangling from trees and his large horse of many different colors. Entertainment included acoustic melodies by members of St. Paul De Vence - arranged by The Warehouse folks - fire dancing by L. Lisa Lawrence, the chap portraying an 18th century European who chased away a group of college co-eds, and announcements of what to expect at First Night - including an attempt to break the record for most people clapping coconuts together (Year of the Horse!). My favorite picnic presentation goes to Team Tacoma School of the Arts who didn't have a speck of color in what can only be described as picnic art.   

LINK: More photos from Le Diner en Blanc

See Also

Adam Martin's Oceanic 2013 Lumins Festivus Saturday

September 27, 2013 at 10:18am

China Davis launches an Indiegogo campaign for "Arctic Days"

China Davis performing at the Hard Rock Cafe in Seattle. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Gig Harbor born, but Northwest raised rock band China Davis has launched an Indiegogo campaign for their upcoming album, Arctic Days, which core members, and brothers, Ben and Ted Fuller have been working on since their birth. I have heard snippets, and read lyrics, for the past two years. It's full of mystery, beauty and a sense of yearning. Tacoma musician, poet and artist Jeremy Silas has added his talent to the project, too. Read more about the band's new effort and where the $4,000 it's asking for through an Indiegogo campaign will be going, below then scroll down to check out the video for "Anjilla" off Arctic Days.


September 28, 2013 at 7:56am

5 Things To Do Today: Oceanic Lumins Festivus, Double Shot Festival, The Evens, Candle Lit Show and more ...

The 2012 Lumins Festivus attacked Tacoma's Spanish Steps. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

SATURDAY, SEPT. 28 2013 >>>

1. There are hundreds of opportunities for the amateur and the professional photogs to get some incredible shots at the annual Oceanic Lumins Festivus as it travels from Wright Park to Tacoma's Theater District beginning at 7:15 p.m. Flex your photojournalism muscle as costumed folks march a winding path, try your hand at an abstract camera toss using the lanterns as your light source, or test your skills in Instagram, Vine, or video with ... just about anything. Thousands of people doing hundreds of things: kids picking their noses; people dressed as fish running, sea urchins marching, mermaids singing; anything goes in this autumnal procession of lights in illuminated sea sculpture. Everywhere you look there's something to document, so you can't go wrong.

2. National Alpaca Farm Days is this weekend. Oh, did you not hear that? You've never heard of an alpaca? Alpacas resemble little Wookie-horses or miniature llamas. Unlike llamas, though, alpacas are not for carrying things; specifically, they are bred for their hair, which is a lot like sheep's wool. Alpaca wool is a silky and lustrous luxury. You should pet one. While these unique creatures hail from the Andean steppes, they seem to like Fife, as well. The Firwood Farm Alpacas in Fife celebrates National Alpaca Farm Days from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Go learn about alpacas and pet one.

3. The Double Shot Festival gives playwrights, directors and actors a mere 24 hours to write, rehearse, and stage original plays. Not even George Bernard Shaw worked this fast. The plays unfold in a leisurely two hours, twice - at 7 and 9 p.m. in Broadway Center's Studio III - so you don't have to sweat, they do. The Double Shot Festival is a partnership between the Northwest Playwright Alliance and the Broadway Center's year-long Free For All focus, which means the Double Shot Festival is free to attend.

4. With The Evens, Amy Farina barrels on the drums, sometimes sounding as easy as morning fog rolling over settled water, other times sounding as sharp and heated as a first piercing. When she sings, she saturates with feminine power. Together with Ian MacKaye's sometimes plucking, often grinding guitar and hard-hitting vocals that evoke nostalgia for your first Fugazi or Minor Threat album but also wakes up little pieces of your heart that weren't there before, the duo makes a memorable sound. Catch The Evens at 7 p.m. in the Olympia Eagles Hall. Read Nikki McCoy's interview with Ian MacKaye in the Music and Culture section.

5. Music combined with atmosphere is one of the many aesthetics that The Warehouse production company aims for. Its Candle Lit series is another way to highlight the unique visions of these Tacoma creatives - music by candle light in a church. Headlinging the Candle Lit Show at 8 p.m. in Tacoma's Urban Grace Church are the trio You Are Plural, a band that make music for the kind of people that need a little more propulsion in their chamber pop. Made up of cello, Wurlitzer organ and drums, You Are Plural construct perfectly lovely tunes that benefit greatly from the sort of nervous percussion provided by not only the drums, but by the Wurlitzer. The Local Strangers, Spirits of the Red City and Bradford Loomis join in.

LINK: Saturday, Sept. 28 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

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