By now you may or may not have discerned that "Culture Vulture" has been slowly evolving from its protean catchall form into a seedy gossip column. And you may or may not care. Whatever, it's my intention to uphold the trashiest standards of gossip here in the local arts and music scene. Gossip is, after all, the true glue of any good community. Those who would decry its values are, without question, its most ardent practitioners. So anyway, send any and all of the latest dish to the email address below ... if you feel like it, or whatever. Oh, and I'll try to bring you the best of local goings-on, too.
Colorado Springs Music Awards flails toward legitimacy
Well, despite my best efforts and sincere hopes that the Colorado Springs Music Awards be an honest ceremony honoring the deserving musicians of Colorado Springs, I have been unable to confirm the legitimacy of the vote counters, the PA Tally Center. Konga Entertainment has posted a letter on their Web site, www.kongaentertainment.com, from a "Ms. N. Ford" that would supposedly confirm the existence of the "Perfectly Accurate Tally Center" as a legitimate business. However, neither the Pennsylvania Secretary of State, nor directory assistance, nor the Homestead, Pennsylvania tax collector has any record of such a business. Sorry, but a letter I didn't receive just ain't good enough. When I recently spoke with Noele F. Williams (the person who lives at the "temporary emergency backup line" for voting that was posted on the Konga Web site), I asked her to simply confirm the tally center's official business name and she hung up on me. Also clouding the awards is the legitimacy of the FAIM Foundation. Though the Konga Web site does list the names and positions of its board members, who include Rachel Agwu and her husband, there is no way to contact FAIM President, Jeanette Edwards. During my research for last week's article on the CSMA, I left my business card at Edwards' home. She did not call me, and I was later accused of "misrepresenting" myself in an e-mail from CSMA volunteer Karen I. Thompson to the awards' nominees. Note to Promoters: The media is your best friend when you're truly transparent.
Guns and gorillas at the FAC
Guns and gorillas at the FAC
I'm so disappointed that the proposed Machine Gun With Cowboy and Indian Sculpture to be located at the southeast corner of Acacia Park was just a joke at last Thursday's pseudo town-hall meet at the Fine Arts Center. Or was it just a joke? There was lots of discussion about "Art" and "Meaning" in the midst of lots of sort-of-slick video what-not by Atomic Leroy (sic) and curator Scott Snyder. Regardless of whether the pseudo-proposed sculpture "means" anything, or if it's "beautiful," it seems to be perfectly "true."
The Guerrilla Girls gave a fairly flat presentation of their many feminist posters and art interventions at the FAC theater on Friday night. Good for Gerry Riggs, Daniel Breckenridge and Scott Snyder that they all include lots of women in their shows. But hey! Aren't they all white guys?
Hip hop hallelujah
Got my Saturday night fever on at the venue formerly known as the American Beach Club where local hip-hop acts Revanon and Idiolectic Conecption hosted the Big Payback Tour. Though all were great, for my money, the locals have way more going on creatively than any of the bigger bills, taking hip-hop off into the freshest fields of beats and the abstract Alice Wonderland of consciousness. Kids bustin' out in the corner with Capoeira-infused break-dancing amidst walls full of gorgeous aerosol art. Congrats to Mole 33 Records and Tequila's and everyone involved for putting on a great show.>
-- Noel Black
I want to take a moment to give props to The Ritz downtown on their new neon marquis. It is beautiful, and when you strut down Tejon in its pink nighttime glow, you feel like maybe this town has truly begun to rock. Check it out this weekend -- Head Full of Zombies plays Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 9:30 p.m.
The Pikes Peak Justice and Peace Commission Coffeehouse (29 S. Institute) hosts a night of young performers this evening. Unlike the similarly named Justice League of America, the Flash, Batman and Superman are not involved. The PPJPC, however, will probably be there for you if Darkseid decides to annihilate the Earth (They will certainly protest its destruction.) But, in the meantime, Summer Hartbauer and the band Oxner play. Bring your Superfriends -- it starts at 7. Call 632-6189.
You're probably going to drink anyway, so you might as well have your drunken dollars help your fellow man -- or, in this case, fellow child. It's St. Baldrick's Day again, a St. Patty's Day party at Jack Quinn's that raises funds for the National Childhood Cancer Foundation. Did I mention that you'll be able to drink and watch people's heads get shaved? More than 140 men and four women at parties around the world will sacrifice their luscious locks -- all for a good cause. The festivities run from 1 to 7 p.m. Call Grace Gould or Heather O'Leary at 328-1312 Ext. 102 if you have questions or would like to volunteer your melon.
Stacy Earle and her husband, Mark Stuart, bring their knocked-off-the-horse country folk to the beautifully restored Annex Ballroom in Cañon City tonight. The show starts at 9 p.m. and tickets are $4. Call 719/276-3088 for details and directions.
I'm hanging up my flag and getting cravings for beef stew and stout. I've got "Some Say the Divil is Dead" stuck in my head and the color green is suddenly very, very appealing. Yup, us Irish folks are getting a yearning for the land of our ancestors. Come celebrate our devilish sense of humor, our respect for history, our ability to eat, drink and be merry and our need to jig, light and quick at In the Celtic Tradition, A Concert of Music and Story. Local storytelling whiz John Stansfield and the band Tim Finnigan (they come back to life every year) perform at the Fine Arts Center, 30 W. Dale St., at 7 p.m. Tickets (available at the door) are $10 for adults and $5 for children ages 7 to 12. (The show's not recommended for children under 7.) Call 634-5583 for more.
Tonight, Mason Williams and Friends will showcase their unique blend of blue grass and country music -- affectionately referred to as "Crabgrass" -- along with their hearty portions of indelible, down-home humor, at the Black Forest Community Center, at the intersection of Black Forest Road and Shoup Road. Tickets are $20 for the general public and $15 for Black Rose Acoustic Society members. Show starts at 7:30 p.m. Call 578-0254 for more.
For 53 years -- fifty-three years, mind you -- the ladies of St. Paul's Catholic Church have been holding their annual fundraiser right around this time. In 1942 they got the idea for the St. Patrick's Day dessert and card party -- you know, Hearts and Eights and bridge and whatnot -- as a way to raise money for their charitable works, sanctuary care and community service. Known as the Altar and Rosary Society, St. Paul's Women's Guild and now the Hearts and Hands of St. Paul's, the group is the oldest volunteer parish group around. Tickets are $2.50 per person or $10 per table, and door and raffle prizes will be awarded. The party begins at 12:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the parish school, 1601 Mesa Ave. For more information and reservations, call Marge at 576-1253.
Everland.net, a family-oriented audio and video entertainment company, hosts a video game freak-out today. One hundred and twenty of the best gamers in the state will take each other on from noon today -- straight through to noon tomorrow. Only the truly determined will be left standing (There can be only one, right?). The tournament will be held at the Sheraton Hotel, 2886 S. Circle Drive. Call 719/648-7919 for more.
Alt-country stalwarts, roots-rock purveyors, Americana flag wavers -- Lost Dogs could fall under any of these categories, but wouldn't quite fit any of them. They will, however, need to find a way to fit into the Acoustic Coffee Lounge (5152 Centennial Blvd.) tonight, because, well, they're supposed to play there. The show begins at 8 p.m. and tickets are $10. Call Ticketmaster at 520-9090 to purchase.
-- Kristen Sherwood and Brandon Laney
All Old Dog, All the Time
Old Dog Band releases debut CD
So the other day I'm getting gas, and the Old Dog Band's debut CD, Canine Cognitive Dysfunction is playing out the open window, when the woman at the next pump tells me she really likes that music ...
"Who is that?"
"Old Dog Band, they're local."
"Right! They play at Laura Belle's sometimes."
Then later on that afternoon outside the market in Manitou, a group of hippie kids walk past and flip me the peace sign during track 3, "Siren Song."
And then ... the phone rings that night and it's some guy I just met wanting to know if I'd like to go out sometime. Maybe to see ... Old Dog?
Lord. What is with this band?
Formed a few years ago in Green Mountain Falls, Old Dog blends influences from every pillar of jam -- the Grateful Dead, String Cheese, Wise Monkey Orchestra -- with their own mellow, high-country class. Made up of six musicians -- guitarists, percussionists and vocalists -- the Old Dog Band has an organic, mature style that has earned them a rabid following. Their shows are packed with dancers young and old, grooving to the intricate, open-ended arrangements of bongos, flutes and a mean bass line. (Old Dog has a penchant for thick, swampy funk beats when the mood is right.)
Maybe all of these people are getting so worked up because, well, Old Dog Band is becoming one of the most accomplished and talented bands in town. They're already one of the hardest working.
The fruits of their labor will be christened this weekend at their CD release party in the recently remodeled Encore! Theater in Manitou.
-- Kristen Sherwood
Old Dog Band CD Release Party with Purple Buddha
Encore! Theater, 10 Old Man's Trail (formerly Tajine Alami), Manitou Springs
Fri.-Sat., March 15-16, 9 p.m.
$12 with CD purchase, $3 without.
Call 471-PLAY for more.