Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: April, 2014 (126) Currently Viewing: 51 - 60 of 126

April 11, 2014 at 3:00pm

Night Moves: Cosmopolites, Mike Coucoules Duo, Guitar Shorty, Oly Mountain Boys, Hawaiian Heritage, Jerry Miller and others ...

Fruit Juice

LIVE MUSIC TONIGHT IN THE SOUTH SOUND >>>

Dawson's Bar and Grill Tacoma - South. Fingertips. 9 pm. NC.

Forza Coffee Company Gig Harbor Gig Harbor. Joe Cugno & Mike Shea. 7-9 pm. NC.

Jazzbones Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. Blues Theater Presents: Guitar Shorty. 8 pm. $15-$18.

Le Voyeur Café and Lounge Olympia - Downtown. Cosmopolites, Skrill Meadow. 9 pm.

  • As of press time, I'm not even sure if I like the Cosmopolites, but they do, blessedly, give me pause. What I know for sure is that they're compelling. There's something at once cheesy and subversive about the music they make. Blending a syrupy mixture of light jazz and provocative experimentalism, the duo arrives at something akin to progressive rock (which can essentially be synonymous with the more divisive "jazz fusion" label), but with a giddier, geekier bent. Read Rev. Adam McKinney's interview with the Cosmopolites in the Music & Culture section.

Maxwell's Restaurant + Lounge Tacoma - Downtown. Lance Buller Combo. 7 pm.

Midnight Sun Olympia - Downtown. Captain Jack Fest 2014 featuring The Straws, Hot Hoodoo, Mosquito Hawk, Captain Algebra, Them Dogs, Tidals, Fruit Juice, Wauby, A Friend. All ages. 4:30 p.m. $5.

Rhythm & Rye Olympia - Downtown. Oly Mountain Boys. 9 pm.

Rialto Theater Tacoma - Downtown. Hawaiian Heritage: George Kahumoku Jr., Stephen Inglis, Waipuna. All Ages. 7:30 pm. $19-$39.

Stonegate Pizza Tacoma - South. Led Zeppmen. 9 pm.

Ted Brown Music Company Tacoma - South. Rock and Roll Clinic with guitarist Jerry Miller. All Ages. 6-8 pm. $5.

Treos Tacoma - Old Town. Mike Couloules. All Ages. 7 pm. NC.

  • I can't remember when I met Mike Coucoules. Years and years ago at Cole's in Ruston is my guess, well before it burst into flames, before his auto accident benefit jam at Seafarers Sports Bar in 2006, and before I became a groupie when Coucoules played bass in Malcolm Clark's blues trio. For certain I wasn't in the picture when Coucoules picked up a guitar at 14, studied Hendrix, Cream, Zappa, CS&N and Steve Miller during high school, before a friend turned him on to jazz and CTI Records. "He showed me some jazz chords and changed my world. He told me I was going to be a good musician because I had a lot of feeling, something that took years to understand. My music is all about feeling, from the heart," Coucoules tells me. He's shared his heart with too many bands to count over the last 40 years, and holds a piece from every one, but his heart grew three sizes when he met horn player John Croarkin during a gig with the Blues Bentley Band. Blown away by Croarkin's chops and comps, Coucoules knew he was the missing piece to the CD churning in his head. The resulting Latin jazz blues country CD can be purchased, and the duo heard live, the next two nights.

Uncle Sam's American Bar & Grill Spanaway. 18th Birthday Bash, with Hambone Blues Band, Amigos. 9 pm. NC.

LINK: More live music Friday, April 11 in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

April 12, 2014 at 8:06am

Saturday Morning Joe: Pro-Russian militants, defense civilian layoffs, military caregivers, Twitter causes war, perfect body ...

Easter has all ready hit Mud Bay Coffee in Olympia.

GRAB A CUP AND READ THE MORNING REPORT FOR 4.12.14 >>>

Armed pro-Russian militants raised the Russian flag in an eastern Ukrainian city today, deepening a stand-off with Moscow which, Kiev warned, was dragging Europe closer to a "gas war" that could disrupt supplies across the continent. 

Derek Chollet, assistant secretary of defense for International Security Affairs, told Congress Russia's annexation of Crimea will affect and perhaps even reshape the NATO alliance.

More amphibious forces are needed in the Pacific says the commanding general of III Marine Expeditionary Force Lt. Gen. John E. Wissler.

Defense civilian layoffs won't be pleasant, but they are necessary.

The move from Joint Base Lewis-McChord to Fort Knox is the first step in Cadet Command's overall initiative to transform the Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps program of instruction.

Out of fuel, out of time and once chance to land on the aircraft carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower.

John McCain, the senior senator from Arizona and former Republican presidential candidate added his voice to the growing chorus of lawmakers seeking to block the Pentagon's plans to retire the A-10 attack plane.

Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Michael Barrett told Congress that marines and sailors care less about pay and benefits than they do about having the best training and tools for the job.

First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden today announced several new initiatives designed to strengthen support for military caregivers.

Optimizing brain health can have immense benefits for readiness, resiliency and the health of soldiers.

Twitter, Facebook and other types of social media are contributing to global instability.

Video: Gen. Dempsey sings with Bret Michaels during the Military Child of the Year gala.

If only there was a high-tech way to replace your flat, expressionless gaze with a digital approximation of human warmth. Well, search no more. AgencyGlass is here.

Awesome video game will let you fully live your space pilot dreams.

SPRZ NY is a clothing line that features shirts, jackets, pants, dresses, tote bags, bandanas inspired by Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, Jackson Pollockand other artists.

Deer Teen Me is a website on which authors pen letters to their teen selves.

Here is the perfect male and female body according to male and females.

April 12, 2014 at 8:30am

5 Things To Do Today: Movie Mashup, nudes and abstraction, kayaking films, Phobos and Deimos ...

The Coen brothers' film, "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" lays claim to inspiration that includes Homer's "The Odyssey."

SATURDAY, APRIL 12 2014 >>>

1. Some books become excellent films. Take Jaws or The Godfather, for instance. Best-selling novels, both, turned into blockbusters. Some books spawn lousy film versions. Among the entries in this large category are: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the 2001 Planet of the Apes remake, Roberto Benigni's version of Pinocchio, and Myra Breckenridge. Then there are those films that take such an uninhibited leap away from their source material that you never see them coming. It's this latter category which film critic Robert Horton will discuss at Movie Mashup: Wild Literary Adaptations on Film Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. in the Tumwater Timberland Library. Horton says that these kinds of adaptations - The Tempest transformed into Forbidden Planet; Homer's Odyssey reimagined by the Coen Brothers as O Brother Where Art Thou - can show us something new, illuminating the original, even when we don't recognize it, and teaching us about being open to the unexpected.

2. A team of horses or a team that plays horse? Which can plow more ground? Find out as Emergency Food Network and Pacific Lutheran University's Men's Basketball Team help prep Mother Earth Farm for this year's growing season from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

3. Moss + Mineral hosts Tacoma artist Michael Kaniecki's "Drawings," an exhibition of original figure drawings and limited-edition prints that reaffirm the emotional and expressive power of hand drawing in the age of digital manipulation. The bold juxtaposition of nudes and abstraction creates the powerful dynamism of this show. See it from 1-5 p.m.

4. Port Angeles Kayak & Film Festivalscreens a series of short outdoor adventure films that will take viewers from the remote beauty of Bhutan to the thrilling white waters of Quebec to the thick evergreen forests of the Olympic Peninsula, and many places in between from 4:30-7 p.m. at Studio Bob, at 118 ½ Front St. In Port Angeles.

Phobos and Deimos get their name from the two moons of Mars, a suitably grandiose title and concept for a band as dramatic as they are. Taking their cues from dark, crooning, romantic New Wavers like the Cure, the Church, and Echo and the Bunnymen, Phobos and Deimos are the sort of band that would live and die by the credibility of their lead vocalist. If he doesn't pass the smell test, then everything will get very silly, all of a sudden. Fortunately, Hans Burger, as lead singer, brings as much gravitas and tasteful reserve to his role of brooding poet as you could reasonably expect. The rest of the band aren't slouches, either, as they skillfully evoke those days of mascara-smeared and emotionally raw post-punk. Catch them with FLORIDA, masonsapron and Post Adolescence at 8 p.m. in Bob's Java Jive.

LINK: Saturday, April 12 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

April 13, 2014 at 7:35am

5 Things To do Today: Spring Fair, "Madame Butterfly," Tacoma Cult Movie Club, Los Devitos and more ...

Catch the pig races today at the Washington state Spring Fair. Press photo

SUNDAY, APRIL 13 2014 >>>

1. Today is the last day to catch the Washington State Spring Fair. While shorter than its late summer edition, is crammed with more attractions than ever. For urbanites who need convincing, here's a handy checklist: Slamfest Demolition Derby, All Alaskan Racing Pigs at Fountain Plaza, Brad's World Reptile Show, Fair Farm, DockDogs, Mindworks! interactive hands-on games, Face painting, Tot Spot, Rainier Rush, Extreme Scream, and more whirling rides, Scones, onion burgers, caramel apples and more. Go ahead: Leave your laptop behind, shimmy into that old pair of Wranglers, pull on those dusty cowboy boots, slap on a 10-gallon hat and prepare to spend yourself a day at this year's wingding.

2. Giacomo Puccini's Madame Butterfly, when performed well, fulfills all of the promise of what opera can be. It is a perfect story of innocent love and betrayal. Cio-Cio-San - Butterfly's Japanese name - is one of the best-developed and most sympathetic characters in the operatic repertoire.  And the music that envelops this touching tale is rich with melody and orchestration. Opera lovers look forward to seeing it time and time again, and many a novice has come to love opera through Butterfly.  Experience Tacoma Opera's version at 2 p.m. in the Pantages Theater.

3. The Tacoma Cult Movie Club celebrates its fifth anniversary with a marathon viewing session featuring releases from Seattle's Something Weird Video - in honor of Mike Vraney, SWV's founder, who passed away Jan. 2 of this year. Beginning at 4 p.m. in the Acme Tavern, expect a potluck (bring food!), raffle prizes and, of course, wacky films. According to host Rev. Colin, the party will last "until they either kick us out or attendance drops off." Either way, TCMC will be staying up way past their usual bedtime.

4. The gang at Harlequin Productions reveals their plans for shows this coming year. And of course it's a party ... with a name ... ECLECTICA! The party will feature live entertainment, cash prize drawings, a wine toss, delicious food and drinks, and of course, the unveiling of Harlequin's 2015 lineup of shows. Harlequin will also be auctioning off items such as ocean-side getaways, dinner/hotel/show packages and a ringside seat at a private performance. Harlequin's improv comedy troupe Something Wicked will be in the house. The $35 event runs 5-8 p.m. in their Historic State Theater.

5. Los Devitos are a surfy garage rock band. They're great. Something about the laid-back vocals (reminiscent of fellow garage rockers the Growlers) and clean guitar lines, mixed with gently woozy psychedelia, is instantly evocative of mumbling heat-struck nonsense on a beach as the sun mercifully sets. This is music that's less for dancing and more for that moment near the end of the party when everyone slumps down into couches, keeping one foot on the ground to slow the spins. Catch the band with No Body and Trout Stream at 7 p.m. in Le Voyeur.

BONUS: Tacoma Community College's Diversity Film Festival kicks off today.

LINK: Sunday, April 13 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

April 14, 2014 at 7:25am

Monday Morning Joe: Iran backs off, China vs. submarines, Army overhauls gear, Army on ships, glow-in-the-dark roads ...

Cutters Point Coffee in Gig Harbor has a large outdoor patio.

GRAB A CUP AND READ THE MORNING REPORT FOR 4.14.14 >>>

Iran's semi-official Fars news agency is reporting that the country has temporarily called off a plan to dispatch warships to the Atlantic Ocean.

The Asia-Pacific naval market is heating up, with massive quantities of new ships to boost regional navies in coming years.

China has begin installing sensitive hydrophones on the floor of the China Seas in an effort to detect and track submarines belonging to the U.S. and its allies.

Let Asia go nuclear.

After Ukraine, conventional deterrence will be the main purpose of NATO's armed forces.

U.S. defense secretary Chuck Hagel's straight talking in Asia gets results.

After battling Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, al Qaeda, the Taliban, forest fires, hurricanes and floods, America's Army is now fighting itself.

Aggregate tonnage alone doesn't win naval battles in the modern era, and suggesting otherwise is dangerous.

Fast and light: Army overhauls its gear strategy.

The Army is considering certifying some of its attack helicopters to operate from ships as the service looks to broaden the role it would play in an Asia-Pacific battle.

The Army is conducting a complete re-assessment of its NCO education system for the first time since 1976.

The Army's Ready and Resilient Campaign is now focusing on "intervention," not on "bystander" behaviors.

Army leaders are providing "under the oak tree" counseling, to improve their Soldier's health and resilience.

Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Michael Barrett issued a letter to all marines trying to explain his recent congressional testimony in which he said marines preferred better equipment over high pay and that lowering pay raises would improve discipline.

Here's your daily dose of paranoia fuel and an excuse to be outraged all wrapped up in one.

Airmen shave their heads to support fallen pilot's ailing son.

Top companies want to hire veterans.

11 cool new products.

Glow-in-the-dark roads finally exist outside of Hot Wheels.

Here's a spoiler-filled recap of last night's Thrones.

Mad Men Season 7 premiere recap.

Vintages photos of spring breakers.

List: Great music videos from 1995.

Good news: Robert Downey Jr. is now on Twitter.

Finally: Zooey Deschanel to unveil a clothing line.

Who wants to see a steam-belching butterchimney?

April 14, 2014 at 7:50am

5 Things To do Today: Seth Freeman Band, Sandow Birk, "The Lunchbox," James Coates and more ...

Seth Freeman rocks The Swiss tonight.

MONDAY, APRIL 14 2014 >>>

1. Seth Freeman has played the guitar since the age of 4. He has spent time in both the city and the mountains of Arkansas, in the heart of the South in a large, and very musical, family. When you hear Freeman play guitar, you quickly realize these are not the same old licks. At 23, he opened for Jonny Lang, Wes Jeans, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Damon Fowler and Devon Allman. Today, he spends most of his time on the road, gigging with Chris Duarte, Wes Jeans, Damon Fowler, Michael Burks, Lance Lopez and Jeff Lang, when not fronting his own band, which rolls into The Swiss at 8 p.m. for a night of driving blues, Ozark Mountain bluegrass and sweet tender ballads. 

2. In India, couriers called dabbawalas pick up lunch from your home, (lovingly prepared by your significant other or family member), deliver it to your workplace and then retrieve and return your empty lunchbox before the working day is over.In the U.S. you're stuck with a leftover Cup O' Noodles and a bologna sandwich that've been congealing in the office fridge for three hours. Yum. Of course, in a country with more than a billion people, there's bound to be an occasional delivery mix-up. Thus, the stage is set for Ritesh Batra's The Lunchbox, screening at 1:30, 4:10, 6:30 and 8:50 in The Grand Cinema.

3. Sandow Birk is a well-traveled graduate of the Otis/Parson's Art Institute. Frequently developed as expansive, multi-media projects, his artworks have dealt with contemporary life in its entirety. With an emphasis on social issues, frequent themes of his past work have included inner city violence, graffiti, political issues, travel, war, and prisons, as well as surfing and skateboarding. Birk will discuss the "American Qur'an" project, currently on view in the Kittredge Gallery, at 3 p.m.

4. Tacoma singer-songwriter James Coates will perform at 7 p.m. in the Steilacoom Pub and Grill.

5. Le Voyeur Café and Lounge in downtown Olympia hosts an all-ages hip-hop show featuring E.B.T., Hufsa, Greggg, F.W.L.T. and Slow Capture at 7 p.m.

LINK: Monday, April 14 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

April 14, 2014 at 10:01am

Doyle's Public House celebrates eighth anniversary April 17

Doyle's Public House co-owner Russ Heaton seen here toasting his Guinness Club during a past Doyle's anniversary party. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Since Doyle's Public House opened in the spring of 2006, the Tacoma bar has attracted tourists from all over the world (Esquire magazine gave it a thumbs up), as well as become a local hangout for South Sound Guinness lovers, Jameson drinkers and soccer enthusiasts who are grateful for a spot to meet more of their kind. These folks, and those who enjoy a good time, will pack Doyle's Thursday, April 17 when it celebrates its eighth anniversary.

Doyle's opened its doors in Tacoma's Stadium District at 3 p.m. Monday, April 17 2006. Eight years later people are still walking through  its doors. Owners Russ Heaton and Dave Shelnut originally looked at Magoo's on North 21st before Adam Buff grabbed it, but did not have the money to do the fire rehab and build a business. They also toyed with the idea of opening "Dr. J's" with Josh Hill, Swiss Pub bartender. The three didn't have the drive needed to make it happen. Heaton never gave up. He remembers the day Bob Hill and Jack McQuade walked away from Engine House No. 9 to open the Swiss Pub. And it never left his mind the many years he worked as a wine and beer distributor.

The idea for Doyle's was hatched June 2005 on Shelnut's bachelor party in Reno at Foley's, a bar across from their hotel. Maybe a month later Heaton found the location, phoned Shelnut immediately, and demolition began in November.

"I marvel sometimes at the fact we have done so well," Heaton told me a few years back. "It makes me feel the best on payday when we are able to employ as many people as we do. Seeing and hearing how proud my parents are of me makes this entire project worth everything I have put into it times 10.

Sitting at Doyle's last Friday afternoon, I asked Heaton what was the secret to staying in business for eight years, in an industry that has gobbled up many South Sound bars in the last eight years.

"Stick to the business plan," he said. I've watched many bars make radical changes and suffer the consequences. Sure, make tweaks, but stick to the plan. Your customers will appreciate it and stay loyal."

Heaton and Shelnut will combine their monthly St. Practice Day party with their anniversary celebration Thursday featuring the standard hoisting pints at 5:17 pm to recognize pint club achievements and welcome new members, followed by hugs, drinking and music from The Cold 102's at 8 p.m. No cover, as always.

"(The Cold 102's) Ant has been a favorite of Doyle's since he was with Toughtimes and we were brand new," says Jesse Turcotte, who books the music and pours the juice at Doyle's. "The 102's are a great compliment to him whether he's barkin' through his harp or fryin' bacon on that guitstick. He's played our party before, and this sure won't be the last time. If you can't feel the blues, you're dead inside."

Drop by Doyle's Thursday and celebrate the vision of Heaton and Shelnut, grab one of their delicious hummus plates or the world-famous Cheesy British, and tip one or two back.

EIGHTH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION, doors at 11 a.m., 3 p.m. official anniversary, 5:17 Guinness toast, 8 p.m. music, Thursday, April 17, 208 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma, no cover, 253.238.5359

Filed under: Food & Drink, Tacoma, Music,

April 14, 2014 at 10:58am

Eat This Now: Catfish and Shrimp

The Catfish and shrimp at Beau Legs Fish and Chips tastes amazing. Photo credit: Jackie Fender

Sometimes I make the greatest, yummiest discovers when poking around sleepy strip malls.

Case in point: Beau Legs Fish and Chips.

Located in a Lacey strip mall, Beau Legs is a casual, intimate dining option specializing in Southern style cuisine with Cajun flair. Think catfish, jambalaya, hush puppies and sweet potato pie. They even have alligator.

Let me tell you this, Beau Legs is soul food at its finest. Everything I've sampled was flawless and well executed.

My Eat This Now recommendation?

You need to eat Catfish and Shrimp ($12.99) now. Featuring two crispy, breaded catfish filets, several meaty fried shrimp accompanied by perfectly seasoned fries, slaw and a couple hush puppies thrown in for good measure makes this a generous serving of all kinds of goodness for those less decisive. Served up with sides of hot sauce and tartar, each table also has all the extra fixins you may desire to add more flavor such as malt vinegar and several hot sauce options. I didn't inquire but if you can request a side of their po'boy sauce, DO.

As I said, the establishment is intimate but service provided is uber friendly and the menu delivers fuel for your soul.

CATFISH AND SHRIMP, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, noon to 7 p.m. Sunday, Beau Legs Fish and Chips, 8765 Tallon Lane NE, Lacey, 360.915.6328

Filed under: Food & Drink, Lacey,

April 14, 2014 at 12:05pm

Beer Here: Georgetown Brewing dinner at Swiss, Brewfest and more events

The Fortnight sandwich as it stands today at The Swiss Restaurant & Pub. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

The kitchen wasn't complete when The Swiss Pub opened 21 years ago this month. Once it was up and running, the first menu item was a no-brainer.

"People would hound us asking when we were opening. We would always reply, ‘two weeks'," says Swiss Pub owner Jack McQuade, speaking for his former co-owners Gayl Bertagni and Bob Hill. "Two weeks, two weeks - we said it for months. When it came time to name Gayl's first sandwich out of the kitchen, ‘The Fortnight' seemed appropriates since it's the British term for ‘two weeks'."

The turkey, bacon, sauteed mushroom, onion and Swiss cheese sandwich spurred the other original Swiss sandwiches: Today's, Tomorrow's and the Yesterday's. All but Tomorrow's still grace the menu.

After Bertagni died in a freak accident in May 2009, McQuade and Hill stayed true to her menu, since their beloved partner created the menu and ran the kitchen at The Swiss. McQuade, now the sole owner, still keeps the sandwiches on the menu, with slick tweaks, in her honor, but has slowly changed the cuisine coming out of the Swiss' kitchen.

"We're moving from a bar with food to a restaurant with a bar," says McQuade. The Swiss is no called The Swiss Restaurant & Pub.

He hired a new chef, Scott Cleese, who has put modern twists on The Swiss' dishes, as well as added new flavors, especially for daily and weekly specials.

Wednesday, April 16, Cleese will running back and forth the kitchen to the main music room to explain his creations during his Georgetown Brewing beer pairing dinner, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Cheddar potato soup, steak salad, fried monkfish and other dishes will be paired with Georgetown's finest, such as the Lucille IPA and Chopper Red Ale. Cleese will explain how he incorporated each Georgetown beer into his dish, followed by tasting notes from representatives from the Seattle craft brewery.

McQuade says monthly brewers dinners are on the books.

The cost is $40 per person. Tickets are available at The Swiss. For more information, call 253.572.2821.

Thursday, April 17

Beer geek Erick Swenson will pair bacon and beer at 6 p.m. in 208 Garfield close to Pacific Lutheran University. For $10, you may drink local beers and eat bacon until 9 p.m.

Friday, April 18

The Eastside Club Tavern hosts a No-Li Brewhouse brewers night. Have you played on the downtown Olympia tavern's new shuffleboard?

Friday, April 18-Saturday, April 19

The Hopscotch Spring Beer & Scotch Festival takes over Fremont Studios in Seattle with the biggest and best pop-up bar you may ever see with 50 microbrews, scotch, whiskey and wine tastings flowing through the aisles April 18-19. Hopscotch 2014 has an impressive lineup of both Washington and out-of-state microbreweries and distilleries. Well-known breweries, from Deschutes Brewery to Full Sail, Ninkasi to Snoqualmie, will serve up familiar brews and more. A few wines from the Proletariat Wine Company will also be available. If your tastes run a little harder, Scotch aficionados (or newbies wanting to learn a bit) can sample five Abelour vintages and six Northwest whiskeys. "We are bringing back our scotch workshops, which are hour-long Scotch 101 workshops led by a master of scotch and feature 10 different kinds of scotch from the Aberlour, Glenlevit, and Chivas families," said Maddie Murphy, sponsorship and marketing assistant for the festival. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit www.hopscotchtasting.com.

Saturday, April 19

Wingman Brewers celebrates its third anniversary with a party noon to midnight. It will premiere its Double IPA Pocket Aces in 22-ounce bottles and on draft, which is basically a doubled up version of its Ace IPA. There is a significant amount of malt backbone in the Pocket Aces, which leads to some residual sweetness. It weighs in at about 12 percent, but with a massive amount of citra and centennial hops, along with a few other varietals to balance it out. Budha Bear Bagels will help soak up the suds. Here is Wingman's starting tap lineup for Saturday: Ace IPA 7.1% ABV, P-51 Porter 8% ABV, Pocket Aces 12% ABV, Coconut P-51 8% ABV, Stratofortress 11.2% ABV, Gratzilla Smoked Bacon Wheat Ale 3.4% ABV, Operation Crossroads Old Ale 16.8% ABV, Chocolate, Coffee, Oatmeal Stout 7.8% ABV, AO Supporters Outlaw Ale 4.8% ABV, Pacific Gose 3.3% ABV, Wit 4.6% ABV, Big Baby Flat Top Imperial Stout 11.4% ABV, Chocolate Fortress 11.2% ABV, Mighty HighPA 6.8% ABV and a cider from Seattle Cider Company.

The historic 1908 Olympic Club in downtown Centralia hosts its annual Brewfest from 1-11 p.m. Since it's a McMenamins' operation, you can expect its Oregon-based brews on full display, as well as beer from guest brewers and importers, including local treats from Fish Brewing and Dick's brewing. While you sip, you can take in the Olympic Club's history of railway bootlegging, captured train robbers, secret call buttons, subterranean tunnels, rumored hauntings as well as tour the Olympic Club brewery, relax in the outdoor seating area, play a round or two of pool. The cost is $12 per 1o-sample punch card. The overnight rooms at the Olympic Club have been taken so plan accordingly.

April 14, 2014 at 2:00pm

Words & Photos: Gritty City Sirens burlesque troupe presents "Adventures in Oz" in Tacoma

Cowardly Lion scares the crap out of Dorothy and her friends. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Pasties and butt cheeks and hip-hop Toto, oh my!

The setup

Expect all three - and more titillating fun - in The Gritty City Sirens' Adventures in Oz, a Wizard of Oz-inspired burlesque production at the Temple Theater Ballroom Saturday, April 19.

I caught a full dress run of Tacoma's burlesque troupe's largest production to date Sunday afternoon. Sadness leaving the sunshine for a dark theater soon disappeared.

This Tacoma makeover of L. Frank Baum's classic may be campy, but it still follows the famous Dorothy down the Yellow Brick Road where she hooks up with the tie-wearing Scarecrow, sexy Tin Man and the fur-donning Cowardly Lion and gains enough confidence as a showgirl to defeat the Wicked Witch of the West. Along the way, there are some eye-popping burlesque, pole dancing, dance numbers and zaniness by the likes of Lusty Zins, Bettie Klondike, Rosie Cheex as Glinda, Heather Hostility as the Wicked Witch, Ava D Jor as the Cowardly Lion and Polly Pucker Up as Dorothy. Toto, in this scenario, takes the form of a hip-hop bboy. The production is necessarily short on suspense, since you know it so well, but delivers with a strong theatrical impact, inventive soundtrack, remarkable performances and hilarious moments.

The one-night only performance benefits the Carol Milgard Breast Center.

The Road

My Yellow Brick Road experience was the troupe's final dress rehearsal, and I kept one foot in such. Often the action would halt on the road, with new instructions or a quick brainstorm session. Also, it would be a shame to spoil the gags and one-liners, so I won't.

The show opens with Tacoma singer-songwriter Heidi "Bunny Holiday" Stoermer and accordionist Tony Hanson setting the stage for a night of wonderful music.

"Yes, we thought ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow' was kind of a no-brainer, so we auditioned with that one and the second song, ‘Until the Real Thing Comes Along.' Toby and I couldn't settle on a closing number, so we composed the final song just for the show," says Stoermer. It works.

Hattie Hotpants from TUSH burlesque in Olympia plays the Great and Powerful Mistress of Oz. The emcee for the Olympia burlesque troupe, Hotpants keeps the laughs and flow rolling in this show. She's quick, and it pays off when there's a Munchkin mishap or skin exposed.

The story basically follows the original Oz, except the story opens with Dorothy receiving a makeover, saddled by her faithful, hip-hop dog Toto, played by Tacoma's favorite gallery owner/DJ.

Since a windstorm would ruin the inventive costumes, Noelle Wood, owner of Tacoma's pole dance school Poledello, and her equally amazing student who is "the calm before the storm", whips up the tornado around a pole. The entire cast of 26 gets swept up in the whirlwind, which includes a little Daft Punk circling about.

You know what happens when Dorothy and Toto land in another land, the Lollipop Guild busts out moves to a club beat, the Lullaby league toss hula hoops and Glinda the Good Witch of the North takes it all to the music of Willie Dixon.

Sure enough, the Scarecrow takes off her rags, the Tin Man sheds the metal and the Cowardly Lion - receiving big laughs - disrobes the fur.

No one will sleep during the dance of the Poppies.

And ... then ... there are the monkeys. If you know Tacoma music and ballet, you'll instantly recognize these three zany characters who provide non-stop energy and laughs.

Music from Queens of the Stone Age, Goldfrapp, N.E.R.D., Louis Prima and others mix with snippets of the original Oz soundtrack, and the Wicked Witch of the West stripping to music by the Voodoo Organist is brilliant.

Yes, even sweet little Dorothy hurls her clothing to Toto offstage. 

I've said too much. I'll probably have to face the wrath of those freakin' monkeys.

The Verdict

In all, it will be an excellent night of twirling tassels and bawdy jokes. (Insert your own Kansas joke here.)

GRITTY CITY SIRENS' ADVENTURES IN OZ, 7 p.m., Saturday, April 19, Temple Theatre Ballroom, 47 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma, $25, Ticketmaster

LINK: More photos of Gritty City Sirens' Adventures in Oz

Filed under: Arts, Music, Tacoma, Sex, Theater,

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