Archive for the ‘Music & Theater’ Category

Mugwumpin’s new show

mugwumpin_static.jpgThe new show by mugwumpin (image at left) opens tonight.

You may remember the troupe’s name from the interview I did with them last year. I haven’t seen the new show but simply judging by the last one I saw, I’m going to this.

Friday Night Music Wrap Up

Tonight, The SF Bay Guardian hosts it’s annual & free “Best Of The Bay” party at the revamped DeYoung museum in Golden Gate Park. Could be a good chance for automotive enthusiasts to try out Warren Hellman’s multi-million dollar parking garage, and mingle with Bruce Brugmann, who for some reason I doubt does much bicycling (details after the jump) …

Other events going on around town tonight include:

A jumpin’ Project Ahimsa fun-raiser benefit at 111 Minna with DJ J.Rocc, that’s free if you RSVP here before 8 pm tonight.

It’s KUSF’s B-Day tonight at Bimbo’s on Columbus where those New Wave hot Dog Eater’s from New Jersey known as Yo La Tengo perform.

Jimmy from The Barfeeders’ wild post-wedding party at Thee Parkside on 17th St is featuring TRICLOPS! and possibly a mysterious group of ex-Golden Gate Park denizens known as Three Weeks Clean.

Details on Guardian Free Party @ DeYoung after the jump…

San Francisco Symphony: Summer in the City


Last night, myself and a few other lucky bloggers were fortunate enough to be a part of the first blogger’s night at the San Francisco Symphony. It was a wonderful opportunity to get out of our digital worlds and immerse ourselves in the an analog world of orchestral music.

The SFS started off the evening of “Classical Romance” with Tchaikovsky’s Romeo and Juliet, Fantasy-Overture, conducted by 27-year old conductor James Gaffigan. It’s a piece that many are familiar with (further info and link to download a recording on Wikipedia), and was a lovely opener. This was immediately followed by a performance of R. Strauss’ Don Juan, Opus 20. As Gaffigan noted, although both stories and pieces are tragic, the most beautiful things are often tragic.

After intermission, we were treated to an awe-inspiring performance of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3 in D minor, Opus 30, by 23-year old pianist Gabrielle Martinez. A long and intense piano piece (accompanied by Gaffigan and the SFS), Martinez pulled it off flawlessly, and without sheet music!

Hankering For History? See The Free “Hungry I” Exhibit…

Long before folks like Bill Cosby,Barbara Streisand, Woody Allen, Jonathon Winters and Bob Newhart were seen on TV, they paid their dues performing in front of a brick wall in a little North Beach club owned by Enrico Banducci. The Hungry I name wasn’t yet used to sucker in patrons to a sleazy strip joint and still was a very famous venue here in the 50’s & 60’s that numerous live albums were recorded at.
San Francisco’s Performing Arts Library & Museum, located on the 4th floor at 401 Van Ness in the Veteran’s Building is featuring an exhibit on Banducci’s famous Hungry I nightclub through the summer, and it’s well worth the FREE ADMISSION…

So if yer a fan of show biz in general, you’ve got no excuse not to check it out, and if you’re a veteran, well it’s in a convenient place if you happen to be sorting out your affairs…

Details on the history of the HUNGRY I club, more pix and the hours of the exhibit etc after the jump

Upcoming May Shows, Maybe More Likely Than May Showers…

Rumor has it that we are definitely in a drought , but that’s not likely the case if yer a Bay Area live music fan.

I know it’s only the 2nd day of April, but if ya haven’t noticed, May is already creeping up on ya… and I know you don’t wanna be left out…

Indeed there’s lotsa concerts coming next month… an inordinate amount it seems, a veritable flood of shows.
concert sign
Arctic Monkeys, Elvis Costello, Lynda “Wonder Woman” Carter , Manu Chao, Nas, Bebel Gilberto, Joss Stone, Mastadon, Pinetop Perkins, Eddie Palmieri, Dinosaur Jr, Flogging Molly, Prince, DeVotchKa, and Allen Toussaint are just some of the many musical acts coming to SF and parts nearby in May…

Something for everyone…

So ya might wanna get yer ducats & service fees together now if you wanna be at the really, really big showbiz shows…

dates & details for some, if not all yer lively entertainment needs below the cuff…

Wrestling With A Rock & Roll Heart Attack…

This Thursday March 15th is a special hard rocking benefit concert at The Bottom Of The Hill to benefit 55 year old former Bay Area classic rock radio personality from KOME/KSJO Dennis Erectus who has no medical insurance and is recovering from a heart attack.

countdante comic book adThe gig is being organized by Count Dante, a custom kimono wearing, larger than life persona ,known as The Deadliest Man Alive. The Count delivers “THE WORLD’S ONLY KUNG-FU ROCK AND ROLL SUCCESS SEMINAR” that according to his own statistics “has transformed millions of WORTHLESS LOSERS into MARTIAL ARTS MILLIONAIRES!” Now he hopes to transform some of that mayhem into money for a friend in need.

Count Dante, by some accounts a local UPS employee, is also by night a rock n roll super hero of epic proportions, and had been managed by Erectus previously when wrestling in the deadly Rocktogon as part of the great ribald SF based shebang known as Incredibly Strange Wrestling, which regularly packed the Fillmore, and toured the US & Europe.

Here’s Dante’s reminiscence of Dennis’ contribution to the Bay Area’s rock n roll radiowaves:

Years before Howard Stern hit the airwaves, Erectus perfected the shock jock formula but did it with a kind of intelligence that made him a uniquely Bay Area phenomenon. He was the nighttime deejay at KOME 98.5 during the station’s most envelope-pushing years in
the late 70s and 80s.  Erectus & The PoontanglerWith such raunchy skits as “Celebrity Gang Bang,” Erectus’ show was the slice of airtime that had
thousands of South Bay 13-year-olds (such as myself) strapping on transistor radio headphone sets because we didn’t want our moms to know what we were listening to. Unlike Stern, who would use a similar shtick to make fun of the homeless and mentally disabled, Erectus’ targets were always racists and the powerful elites. Televangelists, the Reagans and Maggie Thatcher were often on the receiving end
of those audio gangbangs.

Read more on the event, it’s sponsors & supporters, see a pic of Dennis smashing a chair onto the Count, and grab a Count Dante mp3 of the song Redwood City Rock City featuring Dennis Erectus, all after the dreaded jump…

Legendary Star Dust Up In The Mission Tonight

I suppose if Jolie Holland’s Joni Mitchellism’s can qualify for last week’s “Noise Pop”fest… I can only wonder what the band’s playing tonight at El Rio would be classified as. Not only is Hank IV on the bill prepping for their SXSW trip, we get one of the more bizarre contributions to modern songwriting & performing. A retiree age aerospace industry security guard from San Jose is heading to the Mission as I write, but by the time he takes the stage, he’ll be in his perplexing persona as The Legendary Stardust Cowboy.

The Legendary Stardust Cowboy… aka The Ledge or as he’s known to landlord’s & law enforcement Norman Carl Odam is a bit of a character.
A sci-fi rockabilly cowboy kingpin, a Wild West version of Wesley Willis, and a performer William Hung couldn’t hold a melted candle too…or something like that. His mythical off beat rock n roll career is too obscure to go into great detail here… suffice to say it is a sight to be seen.

For those curious enough to make it over the jump, and consider dropping $7 at the door tonight…mp3’s are provided.


Roky Erickson & Explosives – the biggest bang of Noise Pop 15

While it came and went this past week already, if you blinked and missed the 15th year of Noise Pop you also missed the most ambitious edition of the festival yet. Thousands of folks were enthralled at various venues around town over the past few days, checking out almost any type of event the organizer’s felt secure in branding under their umbrella. In addition to indie rock sets were film screenings, literary showcases, and even a line snaking around the block on Divisidero Sunday afternoon for a “Noise Pop” comedy show at The Independent w/ Patton Oswalt.

While it started as a one off show in 1993 at that same venue when it was known as The Kennel Club, it’s morphed from a pop punk focused rock thing into a multiday event with almost no entertainment genre boundries. This years festival kick off event was a free party last Tuesday at Mezzanine including the antics of the Extra Action Marching Band and MC/DJ David Cross.

Even the corporate Clear Channel controlled Fillmore was hosting so called Noise Pop shows, with Thursday night’s Noise Pop event at the Fillmore was SF’s own crown prince of Asian rap Lyrics Born along with Oaktown’s politically adroit funksters The Coup. Friday at The Fillmore saw local folk chanteuse Jolie Holland‘s headlining set that included songsmith David Dondero‘s opening set with his “saw” player Jamin celebrating his birthday onstage. …

David Dondero – South of The South

After the “Dangerous HighwayEddie Hinton doc film directed by Deryle Perryman played ATA on Sunday, Annie’s Social Club hosted a great Muscle Shoals sound tribute after party thang with a bill rich on local southern fried talent like Chuck Prophet, Jon Weiss, Eric Moffett, Bart Davenport, Dave Gleason and the show stealing Mike Therieau.

Mike Therieau – Fly Away

It was all down home enough to make this lil’ blogger head home to prepare some spicy okra filled gumbo and smokey collared greens and order up some of those long lost Hinton tunes from the Zane record label.

With so much entertainment crammed into just a few days, it literally boggles the mind as to how to budget time & bucks to attend even half of the shindigs. By far though the most sought after tickets & buzz I encountered seemed to be surrounding the return of Roky Erickson of the 13th Floor Elevators after a 25 year absence from the stage.

Roky has a special relationship with San Francisco, having been the founder of one of the first “psychedelic” rock bands, His music influenced many Bay Area musicians including Janis Joplin. In the late 70’s & early 80’s he was also based in San Francisco and his band Roky Erickson & The Aliens were signed to CBS and played around town quite a bit, with Roky rambling on about demons in radio interviews of the era.

Preceded by Wednesday night’s sidewalk clogging crowd attending his “Your Gonna Miss Me” doc screening at the Roxie about the troubled musician, his gig on Thursday at The Great American Music Hall was sold out over a month before he came to town…

More on Roky, Noise Pop 15 and some more sample mp3’z of related tunes after the dreaded JUMP…

One Man Star Wars Trilogy

charlesross_saber.jpgCharles Ross is a one-man geek entertainment machine (see the GETV interview with Charles Ross here). He is the brains behind and stars in the One Man Star Wars Trilogy, which is currently at the Post Street Theatre.

Ross has been performing One Man Star Wars Trilogy for five years now, and has even been invited to perform at LucasFilm events. The timelessness of Star Wars combined with Ross’ wit makes a truly entertaining show. He held my attention for the entirety of the show (performed without intermission), encapsulating the entire Trilogy in about an hour. It’s quite amazing how he portrays all the key characters and even various space vehicles!

If you are familiar with Star Wars in the least bit, you will enjoy this show. If you’re obsessed with Star Wars, you will also enjoy the show… and perhaps even get a lot of the obscure jokes that Ross peppers into the performance.

There’s only one more week left of the show in SF, so you better catch it before it moves on to a galaxy far, far away!

Midweek Tango

What started out as a standard ‘meet for a birthday cocktail’ midweek took a different turn, as we rounded the corner from Coco500, headed for the Vima dance studio on 3rd, near Brannan. The birthday girl has been taking the Argentine Tango lessons for the past month or so, and so I decided to drop in and observe.

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