Amoeblog

Always Bet on Black? Looking at who dies first in some 80s action films.

Posted by Charles Reece, February 28, 2010 11:54pm | Post a Comment
deep blue sea sam jackson eaten shark

The folks over at TV Tropes have a handy system of weights ("scream scores") assigned to character types, called the Sorting Algorithm of Mortality (SAM), that when added up predict who's most likely to die first in a film or TV show. Under the category of race, the SAM gives a weight of 5 out of 5 for black or twofer (the latter being two token minorities represented in one character). At least since Renny Harlin's ironic homage to 80s sci-fi/action films, Deep Blue Sea (1999), the trope that the "black dude dies first" has been taken as a truism among pop culture aficionados. If you'll recall, it was Sam Jackson's Russell Franklin who, during one the actor's trademarked badass speeches, was the first major character to get eaten by a shark. The joke actually compounds two factors that aren't that easy to separate: star power and race. One wouldn't expect Will Smith to be the first to go, so Jackson, being the biggest star in the picture, shouldn't have been either, but his blackness (as the film satirically put it) won out. LL Cool J's Preacher makes explicit reference to the trope throughout the film, and is surprisingly (against the race-based common-sense expectation) saved at the end. But he's the second biggest star in the film (with the possible exception of Thomas Jane, whose character survives too). So are all the joking references to the fate of black men in action films really hitting their target, or are they merely beating a "dead unicorn"? I figure the topic makes for a fitting end to Black History Month here at Amoeblog.

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February 28, 2010

Posted by phil blankenship, February 28, 2010 11:02pm | Post a Comment
The Crazies movie ticket stub




BIRTH! Relights the California Synthpunk Torch

Posted by Aaron Detroit, February 28, 2010 03:30pm | Post a Comment
Birth! Synthpunk
California’s music underground has had a certain strain of Gothy Synthpunk running through its veins for over a decade now. In the late Nineties and early Aughts, bands like San Francisco’s Phantom Limbs and Subtonix and LA’s New Collapse delivered heavy doses of frenetic, trashy and dark Synth-based punk heavily influenced by 70’s seminal LA groups like The Screamers and Nervous Gender with liberal dashes of O.G. LA Deathrockers Christian Death, the UK Batcave scene, and a noticeable pull from 90’s West Coast Post-Hardcore and Punk. Picking up this torch left dwindling for some years is the LA-based one-man band, BIRTH! AKA Douglas Halbert (also of Industrial noise-purveyors Elephant Skull). BIRTH!’s full-length debut, I Will, is an exemplary addition to the pantheon of California Deathrock and Synthpunk – raw yet compelling anthems soaked in funeral organ and cutting old-school Hardcore vocals.

I Will’s opener, “Value,” is a classic Deathrock stomper in the vein of Christian Death’s “Face” or Subtonix’s “Black Nails In My Coffin” with an extra dose of bile. On “Arms Crossed,” Halbert simultaneously skewers the apathy of a prospective lover and the affected apathy of punk-show spectators over a filthy Sci-Fi dirge. However, despite the throat-destroying, incendiary vocals, there is a sensitivity and creeping light at the heart of this seemingly vicious animal of a record. “My Home To Keep” is what one might call a “Deathrock power ballad,” -- if one can imagine such a thing. Over a downright pretty synth melody, Halbert characterizes childhood traumas following a mother’s death, but even with such intense subject matter and the general crestfallen atmosphere, Halbert’s lyrics still have a defiantly positive outlook. On “Value” he ends his rant with the line “I'll look inside myself and find a life I can value!” and one can truly believe his insistent tone on “Free of This” when he bellows, “I am free of this!” I Will, indeed, seems to be Halbert’s will --his sigil--for a better life.

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SOUNDTRACK SERIES #3

Posted by Job O Brother, February 28, 2010 12:35pm | Post a Comment
Directions: Imagine Mr. Brother living another day, as always, with music playing. Whether it’s one of his trusty iPods, or his home stereo, or working the soundtracks section of Amoeba Music Hollywood, Mr. Brother is eating, sonically, with the mouths of his ears.

To simulate this experience, as you read the below story of a day lived, you will be given certain music clips to play. These are inserted to provide you with the same tunes Job was hearing as he was doing what you’ll be reading.

For example, while he was writing the above directions, he was listening to this:

The other day, while I was counting my number collection, I was interrupted by a knock on my front door. As is customary in my country, I went to see who it was. Imagine my surprise when it turned out to be none other than myself.

“Oh!” I said with a start, “How did you get out there?”

“You mean,” I said with a sly grin, “How did you get out here.”

“That’s exactly what I said,” I retorted.

“But not what you meant,” I corrected.

I slammed the door in my face and went back to my numbers. I don’t have to take that kind of snarkiness, you know – not even from myself.


Hours later I was eating some broccoli that the Lord My God made, when a second knock came – this time at the back door. Worried that I was up to my own tricks and hoping to avoid another awkward confrontation with myself, I peaked out the kitchen window to see who it was.

The Wrong Way: African Americans in Rock, by Cas

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, February 27, 2010 03:01pm | Post a Comment
kyp malone tv on the radio

Kyp Malone and I shared an “Afro-punk moment” a few years ago. We were at Bimbo’s 365 Club in San Francisco where Kyp’s band, TV on the Radio, had opened for The Faint. The show was just letting out when I ran into the furry, bespectacled guitarist and co-vocalist milling about in the lobby of the venue. I struck up a conversation, letting him know I’d caught the previous night’s show of the same bill at The Grand Regency Ballroom. We’d been talking for some time when a young white indie kid broke away from the pack of even more young white indie kids that passed by and approached Kyp and me, smiling that “OMG” smile. “You guys were great tonight” she beamed, at first addressing me. There was this split second of confusion when I didn’t know how to respond since, you know, I was holding it down in thetv on the radio audience that night. I kind of chuckled and motioned towards Kyp, remarking that he was the guy she wanted to thank. Kyp, being mischievous, motioned right back at me, letting her know that I was the guy to thank. We let it hang for one beat before letting the embarrassed girl off the hook. Kyp thanked her for the compliment, his genuine smile defusing the girl’s embarrassment. After she dove back into the throng, Kyp turned to me and said, “That happens all the time...whenever I’m standing with any other black dude.” We laughed. 

Taking the diplomatic route, I guess I couldn’t really blame the girl for thinking I was a member of the band, except I don’t bear that much of a resemblance to any of the guys in TVOTR. Sure, we share some African ancestry, taste in eyewear and facial hair grooming concepts. But we don’t really look alike. Do we? Regardless, amongst all of the people that were at Bimbo’s that night, Kyp and I stuck out, even though only one of us was on stage under spotlights.

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Warnings & Brags

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 26, 2010 10:00pm | Post a Comment
A great collection of promotional stickers. I'm still pondering what exactly a "quivering classic" is...

In A Cloud Release Party in SF Starring Kelley Stoltz, Sonny Smith, Tim Cohen and More!

Posted by Miss Ess, February 26, 2010 02:32pm | Post a Comment
in a cloudin a cloud
I'm pleased to announce that local San Francisco record company Secret Seven Records has a new release! It's called In A Cloud and it's an exclusive compilation of previously unreleased tracks starring many famed and talented local artists such as Kelley Stoltz, Thee Oh SeesSonny & The Sunsets, Fresh & Onlys, Hannah & Raven (of Grass Widow), Jacques Butters, Ty Segall, The Sandwitches, Exrays, Donovan Quinn & the 13th Month, Trainwreck Riders, Dylan Shearer, and Paula Frazer. This special release comes as a limited edition of 500 on vinyl only. The record was mastered by Paul Oldham, sometime bandmate and always brother to Will Oldham. Listen to The Sandwitches' track "Grey Wizard" right here. You can also hear Kelley Stoltz's sweet "Pinecone" hereIn A Cloud will be for sale at Amoeba starting on Tuesday, March 2! Come an' get it!

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Amoeba Music Weekly Hip-Hop Round Up 02:26:10: Ras Kass, RasCue, Snoop, Ya Boy, Big Rich, Rob Swift, Dan the Automator, Freeway & Jake One, etc.

Posted by Billyjam, February 26, 2010 10:07am | Post a Comment

Amoeba Music San Francisco Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 02:26:10



1) Big RIch & Ya Boy Guns & Roses EP (Black Card Music)




Big Rich & Ya Boy "Street N*gga" (2010)







2)  V/A Snoop Dogg presents West Coast Blueprint (Priority Records)


 
Kid Frost "La Raza" (West Coast Blueprint)







3) Rob Swift No The Architect (Ipecac)


   Rob Swift "The Architect" (title track)

This Week At The New Bev: 2/26 - 3/4

Posted by phil blankenship, February 25, 2010 10:32pm | Post a Comment
This Week At The New Beverly

Our March calendar is now online!
www.newbevcinema.com/calendar.cfm


Friday & Saturday February 26 & 27


A Judy Holliday / George Cukor double bill!

Born Yesterday
1950, USA, 103 minutes
http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0042276/
dir. George Cukor, starring Judy Holliday, Broderick Crawford, William Holden, Howard St. John, Frank Otto
Fri: 7:30; Sat: 3:40 & 7:30, Watch The Trailer!

Academy Award Winner Best Actress Judy Holliday plus 4 other nominations including Best Director & Best Picture

The Mezzanine Shuffle - Turn and face the strange

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 25, 2010 02:55pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Hollywood Mezzanine Move Sign
Do this don't do that can't you read the sign?

As some of those who know me know, I used to work in the movie department here at Amoeba Hollywood. I was assigned to Black Cinema and Latino Cinema. You could say they were my beat. But I was a bit of a lone wolf who played by my own rules. But after one too many high-profile disasters, the sarge stuck me with a desk job, writing this blog. But I still take interest in my old neighborhood and some (OK one) of the customers still tell me to come back... he also gave me a couple of candy canes for Christmas which (since I don't much like sweets) sit in the guampa on my desk. They're yours if you want 'em. ,

Anyway, so the mezzanine just went through a major overhaul, which I had/got to be a part of...

 Amoeba Music Hollywood Mezzanine
The Mezzanine - Officially the largest selection of movies in the universe

Occasionally, when something big like this goes down, the powers that be will promise me some nice change if I bust the right brains. Or, to paraphrase Sean P, "They callin' me to come back to the streets, Eric B, a.k.a 'Sharp Crease'/Said it was necessary, these sucka weddoz out here very scary/They comin' whole they livin' in the month of February" to which I replied, "OK den." Also I was promised pizza. More about that later.

out this week 2/2 & 2/9...album leaf...massive attack...sade...hot chip...rachel grimes...

Posted by Brad Schelden, February 24, 2010 04:05pm | Post a Comment
lionel richie hello
Hello! and sorry I have been away for so long. The month is almost over and I have too much to talk about. I don't know if anybody has made time for anything but the new Sade, but I have been listening to many other albums. In fact, I have not even had time to listen to Sade. I was never a huge fan, but like most people, I was a casual fan of "Smooth Operator." It was the single on their first album, Diamond Life, from 1984. Hard to believe it was that long ago! I was only ten years old and easily influenced by top 40 radio. 1984 was the year of some big singles. Songs that will forever be part of my memories. Songs that I know all the words too whether I want to or not. This was the year of "Owner of a Lonely Heart" by Yes, "Karma Chameleon" by Culture Club, "Wake Me Up Before You Go Go" by Wham!, "What's Love Got To Do With It" by Tina Turner, "Time After Time" by Cyndi Lauper, "Hello" by Lionel Richie, "I Just Called To Say I Love You" by Stevie Wonder, "Out Of Touch" by Hall & Oates, "Carribbean Queen" by Billy Ocean, and "The Reflex" by Duran Duran. I know all these songs are now swirling around in your head! Can you think of any bigger songs than these? I may have not owned all these albums, but you can bet I had them all taped onto a cassette tape from the radio! These songs were monumental hall & oates out of touchin shaping my life. They could not be avoided. And this was way before the Internet. Way before music blogs!

GRIPPING GRAFFITI DRAMA WHOLETRAIN SCREENS IN SF & LA

Posted by Billyjam, February 24, 2010 02:30pm | Post a Comment
Scene from the making of the film WHOLETRAIN, which was shot in Poland

Graffiti fans should make a point of attending the California screenings of the powerful new European graffiti themed feature film WHOLETRAIN that screens this evening (Feb 24) in San Francisco at the Goethe-Institut and on Monday (March 1st) at the same institution's center in Los Angeles. After the screenings in each city director Florian Gaag will be on hand for a Q&A session.

Gaag's first feature, WHOLETRAIN was shot in Poland, has English subtitles and has already been a film festival fave. It tells the story of a tight knit crew of graffiti writers, Tino, David, Elyas and Achim, who go through a lot of troubles (including run-ins with the law and a growing feud with a rival graf crew) in pursuit of their art.
WHOLETRAIN
WHOLETRAIN is full of wonderful, memorable scenes like the one where Tino (convincingly played by Florian Renner) is trying to persuade his friend and ever-frowning crew mate David (played by Mike Adler), who is on his last strike with the authorities, to go back out that night on an important train "bombing" mission in which they have a final opportunity to prove their worth against the rival graf crew.

If they miss this last chance, "We look like a finger painting group. Unless we do a wholetrain, we can battle housewives in the local drawing class," warns Tino. 

Chilly B Of Old School Group Newcleus Died Today

Posted by Billyjam, February 24, 2010 12:53pm | Post a Comment
Chilly B
Bob "Chilly B" Crafton
, one of the original members of legendary early 80's electro hip-hop outfit Newcleus, died today from complications associated with a stroke. He was 47 years of age. The Brooklyn based old school group Newcleus was best known for the early eighties hit singles "Jam On It" and "Jam On It Revenge (The Wikki Wikki Song)," both punctuated by the Chipmunks-like voice contained on their tracks. The tracks were released on the Sunnyview label -- records that any hip-hop DJ back in the day had to have in their crates for dancers and breakers as well as almost a requisite for a mixtape.

"Chilly B was a gifted artist who played keyboards and bass. He laid down that famous bass line in 'Jam On It,'" said friend and fellow old school New York hip-hop artist Scratchmasta Jazzy G via email to me this afternoon. "He was a cool person too. He will be missed."  As well as laying down that famous bass line on "Jam On It," Chilly B also busted out such well known lyrics on the song as "Allow me to introduce myself, my name is Chilly B/ And I'm a surefire, full blooded bonafide house rockin' Jam-On Production MC/ If you want the best, put me to the test, and I'm sure you'll soon agree/ That I got no force cause I'm down by law when it comes to rockin' viciously, you see." Rest in peace to another hip-hop great.


Newcleus "Jam On It"

Dragons and Reptiles

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 24, 2010 11:20am | Post a Comment

With Komodo Dragons back in the news, I figured it a good time to do my reptile/dragon post.

 

Novmichi Tosa of Maywa Denki pays a visit to GR2 - めいわでんき

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 23, 2010 05:01pm | Post a Comment

Novmichi Tosa, the Willy Wonka-like figure like genius behind Maywa Denki made a rare US appearance at GR2 in Little Osaka. They were selling the Otamatone, a new instrument/toy that's sort of like a cross between a đàn bầu and a theremin.

Novmichi Tosa at GR2 

Maywa Denki's so-called Nonsense Objects are kind of like a mix of Harry Partch's instruments, Rube Goldberg's overly elaborate machines, a bit of Kenji Kawakami's absurdist Chindōgu filtered through the utilitarian, mid-century futurist spirit (if not the aesthetic) of prop designer Wah Ming Chang.



After the soft-spoken Toshi san signed autographs and demonstrated the pachi-moku and otamatone with stirring renditions of "Greensleeves" and "Amazing Grace," it was all over and I went outside, where a beaming stranger said to me, "Now my life is complete!" as she proudly clutched her new toy.

Echo Park (aka Echo Parque)

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 22, 2010 05:44pm | Post a Comment

Echo Park Lake
Cloudy skies over the bottomless Echo Park Lake

This blog entry is about the Los Angeles neighborhood of Echo Park. Please vote for more neighborhoods by clicking here. Also, please vote for more Los Angeles County communities by clicking here. To vote for Orange County neighborhoods, vote here.


INTRO TO EP

Echo Park is a Mideast Side neighborhood located north of Downtown Los Angeles in the Elysian hills west of the LA River. Echo Park has long associations with several arts, most notably literature and film. It's one of the city's oldest neighborhoods and is full of many old (by Angeleno standards) Craftsman, Spanish, and Victorian homes built between the 1880s and 1930s.

HIP-HOP AND BLACK HISTORY MONTH

Posted by Billyjam, February 22, 2010 04:06pm | Post a Comment

The Last Poets
From its early days, hip-hop has been closely interrelated with black history and culture. Hip-hop is really a continuum of many previous black art forms. Rapping or MC'ing, for example, is merely carrying on a tradition of various oratorical forms in black history that include West African griots, talking blues, the sharp verbal flow of 1950's & 1960's hipster-jive talking radio DJs, the spoken word of artists like The Last Poets and Gil Scott Heron, and of course, the toasting style in reggae. Additionally, hip-hop music, through both its lyrical content and its endless sampling, is responsible for teaching black history in a non traditional way.

Thanks to hip-hop's ubiquitous sampling of such historical black figures as Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. (especially in the 80's and 90's), many young people first learned about the philosophies of these black leaders and black history in general. One of the earliest popular hip-hop songs to sample Malcolm X was Keith La Blanc's "Malcolm X - No Sell Out" 1983 single on Tommy Boy that utilized absolutely no rapping, just samples of the black leader speaking. In later years most hip-hop artists sampled bits of Malcolm X to Malcolm Xcompliment the emcee's message. In 1988 Public Enemy's politically charged album It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back opened with a powerful Malcolm X sample.

Make Mine A Triple: Joanna Newsom says, "Have One On Me"

Posted by Kelly S. Osato, February 22, 2010 02:09am | Post a Comment
Joanna Newsom Have One On Me Record review drag city art deco cover image album
Have you ever been so hungry for something, a rare treat that smelled so good sizzling on the coals, that against your better judgement, you burned your mouth in your wolfing haste to taste it? Upon procuring my copy of Joanna Newsom's latest opus, the fresh-from-the-fire triple LP Have One On Me, Christmas morning-ish feelings of borderline maniacal anticipation welled up in my belly and I imagined my immediate consumption would be not unlike taking a rich, slow-baked indulgence dish to the face and, Lord knows, how I tried. Eighteen songs and two hours later I felt pleased to have a feel for the depth and complexity of the bounty, but proper digestion recommends dipping in --- all the better to savor the flavor. Seriously folks, this big 'un is a whole mess of treasure that takes time --- sweet, precious time --- to appreciate in both fathomed comprehension and measured worth. So approach with a mind to settle in and absorb each third accordingly, one by one (because you know we'll be referring to them from now 'til eternity, respectively, as record one, record two and record three), and be sure to make time and take it, like Joanna's first cooing words on the opening track, "easyeasy."

"Easy"
joanna newsom have one on me legs lithe album artwork record review black and white pretty
Have One On Me as a complete work, generally speaking, plays like an almanac harkening a bygone age which, when you think about it, encompasses everything we've come to expect from Miss Newsom. The album artwork appears to draw heavily on art deco influences, what with the choice of typography, the subtle design notions featured on the insert and, of course, the cover image in which we see Newsom, sprawled kittenish on a couch, pictured in what appears to be a vintage tinted photograph of a disheveled dressing room decorated by a deranged zoologist. And it's all show inside as well: the black box houses three individually sleeved albums and a booklet packed with lyrics, credits, and a curious lack of thanks set against a series of four, seemingly sequential black and white candid shots of our girl in a simplified portrait setting evoking a subdued recollection of the madness depicted on the cover, looking very lithe, long-limbed and undeniably beautiful in bib-and-brace short-shorts (something tells me this look'll be trending a little while longer) as she twists her hair in a fix, gorgeous. Then there is the music.
joanna newsom triple album record review have one on me ys street band live
For me, Joanna Newsom is as much Elton John on holiday as she is a harp-wielding Morgan le Fay. "Easy," the opening number, showcases the shadow and the light of Newsom's "Elton" leanings, that is to say, her ability to lay down a playful yet solid piano track that is as much of a portal unto itself as it is a portent of things to come. "Easy" begins slightly dormant in bed, yawning with lyrics suggesting the movements of a doomed relationship from contentedness to conflict to confrontation and, interestingly enough in the end, to conjuring. It's good stuff and good enough to rouse the listener into readiness for the multi-instrument maelstrom of musicianship to come in the eleven minute title track where Newsom flaunts her penchant for folklore and the storytelling origins of the bard instrument that have sensationalized her skills internationally. The song "Have One On Me," like "Easy," features a host of arrangements around Newsom's central vocals and instrumentation, providing a lushness very much like that of Van Dyke Parks' orchestral wizardry that graced the strains of Ys, not to mention the four man and a lady Ys Street Band (still a corn-nut of a moniker) that provided a miraculously scaled-down live distillation of the aforementioned orchestration on a scattering of instruments for Newsom's Ys tour (three of the original five comprise the core of the guest players on the new record). I suppose that's why Newsom claims that Have One On Me reflects an amalgam of her previous works. 
joanna newsom have one on me album review record harp strings harpist
While there are a few uncluttered, straightforward harp or piano plus vocal compositions on the record, many of the songs are dressed up in one way or another with arrangements attributed to the guest musicians themselves, some of whom play such exotic oddments as timpani, kora, Bulgarian tambura, kaval, vielle, rebec, and coronet (the bulk of the latter lending "Kingfisher," on record three, courtly virtue). Still, at first spin, these endowments make for a complicated, tight-lipped listen that takes a little getting used to and may, at least in my case, leave the listener wondering what some of these songs might sound like en deshabille. Still again, what works for songs like "Go Long," where Newsom plays three harps (!), and the jaunty seventies (1970's, not 1870's or earlier like some of Newsom's other pieces suggest) feel of "Good Intentions Paving Company" is the motley mélange of guitars, percussion, banjo, mandolin, trombone, piano and (especially!) the warm waves of the Hammond organ and layered vocal harmonies à la Joni Mitchell or Fleetwood Mac or --- so clearly single-worthy a track it was no mistake that it was leaked as a teaser (in fact, all the pre-release date treats are stand out numbers by now, just as surely as impatient hunger for the feast has broken them in). 

Oscars 2010 Predictions

Posted by Charles Reece, February 21, 2010 11:07pm | Post a Comment

Using the most advanced heuristic available to me, namely my own cynical reasoning about the Academy, here are my predictions:

Leading Actor

Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
George Clooney, Up in the Air
Colin Firth A Single Man
Morgan Freeman, Invictus
Jeremy Renner, The Hurt Locker

Both Bridges and Firth are exceptional in not particularly good movies that play to Academy tastes, addiction and identity politics. Clooney is in the best movie here, but he'll lose to Bridges for the same reason Firth will: Bridges has been around for nearly 40 years and has always been excellent. Call this his "should've won for The Big Lebowski" win. Renner is competent in a stereotypical hot shot role -- big deal. Freeman plays the Freeman role once again -- this time they call him "Nelson Mandela."

crazy heart jeff bridges
Jeff Bridges

Cinematography

Mauro Fiore, Avatar  
Bruno Delbonnel, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Barry Ackroyd, The Hurt Locker  
Robert Richardson, Inglourious Basterds  
Christian Berger, The White Ribbon 

My friend Will said Avatar looks like a moving Yes cover. And was it all the shadows in Half-Blood Prince that got it nominated? No quibbles with the other three, though. I'm going with the master of the down-and-dirty-shaky-cam, Ackroyd, because this is Bigelow's year (on which, I'll have more to say anon). I'm more infatuated with Richardson's colors, though.

(In which Job introduces the character Ryan.)

Posted by Job O Brother, February 21, 2010 06:56pm | Post a Comment

Ryan "Mouth-hole" Cassano

This weekend I played host to a friend of mine, Ryan “Mouth-hole” Cassano, who was visiting from my beloved home town of Nevada City, California. He had come to investigate 1980’s video arcade games and literature concerning it for some future enterprise that I’m not at liberty to divulge but involves alcohol, supermodels, and rooms of plastic balls.

He met me after my hard but spiritually fulfilling shift at Amoeba Music Hollywood, waiting out the last few minutes of my shift by browsing the clearance section of soundtracks, where he found two items that made him squeal like a flame-covered, 500 pound, chocolate gorilla who sounded like a happy little girl: the soundtrack to the film Kill the Moonlight (which features some very early work by Beck), and to the documentary King of Kong: Fistful of Quarters.

The latter was serendipitous, as it was related to his arcade quest. In fact, he was traveling with a copy of that very film and insisted I watch it with him. I told him he wasn’t the boss of me and I can do whatever I want and I hate I hate him I hate him, then we drove back to my place for a home-cooked dinner of gimlets.
Just like Ma used to make!

I introduced him to the refined art of Tom of Finland, who’s work is so lovingly collected in my Taschen art book. He found it deeply educational and oftentimes frightening. Imagine my embarrassment when, half way through flipping through the book, I realized it was a souvenir photo album of my trip to the Anne Frank House! A common mistake, sure, but no less silly.

Puzzler: Can you tell which one is which?

After half an hour of explaining to him the difference between gay sex and the methodical genocide of six million people, we decided to go to bed.

February 21, 2010

Posted by phil blankenship, February 21, 2010 04:32pm | Post a Comment
Shutter Island movie ticket stub






Hip-Hop Weekly Round Up 02:19:10

Posted by Billyjam, February 19, 2010 07:01pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Hollywood Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 02:19:10


1) The Madlib Medicine Show 1, Before The Verdict featuring Guilty Simpson (Stones Throw)

2) Strong Arm Steady In Search of Stoney Jackson (Stones Throw)

3) Slum Village Fan-Tas-Tic Vol. 2.10  (Barak Records)

4) Mathematics Presents Return Of The Wu And Friends (Gold Dust Media)

5) DJ Green Lanern & Styles P The Green Ghost Project (Invasion Music Group)

New releases on the latest hip-hop chart from Amoeba Music Hollywood include the Slum Village reissue by Barak Records of  Fan-Tas-Tic Vol. 2.10 (in a two CD set), and also the equally recommended producer DJ Green Lantern and rapper Styles P collaboration The Green Ghost Project which features cameos from Styles P's fellow D-Block cohorts Jadakiss, and Sheek Louch, as well as guest shots from M.O.P, N.O.R.E, Uncle Murda, and Junior Reid. Appearing on DJ Green Lantern's label, the renowned mix DJ, who initially built his rep as the main DJ for Eminem's Shady Records label, shares production credits here with the Alchemist, Scram Jones, and Statik Selektah, a great combination of two of the best. Also new but not recommended, unless you don't have a lot of Wu Tang in your collection already, is the Feb 16th release Mathematics Presents Return Of The Wu And Friends, which really offers little new to the true Wu fan, with re-released tracks and some slightly modified/remixed ones, as the website HipHopDX so accurately pointed out. The tracks "It’s What it Is” and “Iron God Chamber” both appeared on Masta Killa’s album Made In Brooklyn four years ago, while the songs “Strawberries & Cream” and “Rush” are scooped straight from DJ Mathematics’ very own 2005 album, The Problem. It is not that this is a bad album by any means, but rather it is slightly misleading in its presentation, which implies it is chock-a-block with fresh new material.

Midnight Mass: Teen Witch Feb 20

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, February 19, 2010 03:20pm | Post a Comment
teen witch midnight mass

Smoke Pt 2.

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 19, 2010 10:20am | Post a Comment
Check out my orig. smoke blog here.
 

Jason Reitman at the New Beverly plus More!

Posted by phil blankenship, February 19, 2010 10:10am | Post a Comment
This Week At The New Beverly

Our complete February calendar is online:
www.newbevcinema.com/calendar.cfm


Jason Reitman at the New Beverly

Jason Reitman takes over programming this week at the New Bev! The award winning director of Up In The Air, Juno, and Thank You For Smoking wants to share some of his favorite movies with YOU! He will appear in person on the first day of each double feature (Friday, Sunday & Wednesday), schedule permitting, to introduce & discuss the films.
 
Jason Reitman discusses the festival, his history with the Beverly and the film pairing specifics at IFC.com.


Friday & Saturday February 19 & 20


Jason Reitman guest-programs the Beverly

Could It Be The Best Mardi Gras Yet??

Posted by Amoebite, February 18, 2010 03:18pm | Post a Comment
We won't know til next time... but we keep topping it every year at Amoeba LA! Just when you thought it couldn't get any wilder and crazier, Mardi Gras 2010 blew the roof off! Maybe it had something to do with the nice weather, or the Saints' Super Bowl win, or all the kids and families that joined us this year, or Doc playing that cello, but something about it was the best darn party jam this side of the Mississippi. If you haven't experienced Mardi Gras at Amoeba, check out these pictures and see what you're missing! And then join us next year!


Mardi Gras at Amoeba always involves a lot of preparation. We spent days decorating the store and hanging more and more shiny purple, green & gold stuff up until it looked like a meltdown at a Brazilian nuclear reactor, which is the effect we desired. We here at Amoeba are very inspired and in touch with the folks and the music in New Orleans and we are proud to pay them as much tribute as we can. For us Mardi Gras is one of the truly great holidays and it deserves some extreme visual expression. Next came the music and the food... we started rockin' the tunes on the stereo first thing in the morning, lots of classic jams from Dr. John and the Meters, the Wild Tchoupitoulas, and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band (check out their new CD with lots of special guests here). It's hard not to get in the mood when the sun is shining and some second line funk is jumpin'... and when all your co-workers are banging on tambourines and honking on party horns too. Sometimes it takes a while to get all the Amoebites in the Mardi Gras mood... this year folks were into it from the get-go. Just about everyone I saw was sporting ridiculous amounts of beads and crazy party hats. At least one pretty straight-laced floor guy wore a mask all day long! Now THAT is what you must do when you go to the Mardi Gras! And we were helped along by some yummy red beans and rice catered by Chef Marilyn from her fabulous soul food restaurant down on Crenshaw and Adams, which I heartily recommend after tasting this grub.

New Orleans Block Party - Bounce Music goes to SXSW 2010

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 18, 2010 09:04am | Post a Comment

This looks incredible. South By Southwest is hosting a bounce music showcase. This is your chance to experience some of the biggest talents to come out of the New Orleans Rap scene.

Although they made their pledge goals, you can still donate and get various merchandise. Now I may have to go to SXSW for the first time.

THE BOUNCE 

Partners-N-Crime DJ Jubilee

PNC were one of the star attractions at Big Boy Records in the '90s and were pioneers of that gangsta bounce sound. Jube is the glue that holds Take Fo' Records together and the man who wrote "Back That A$$ Up," among many other classics.

Magnolia Shorty has released several bounce classics, my favorite being "Monkey on tha D$ck" when she was on Cash Money Records.

THE SISSY

Katey Red , Big Freedia and Vockah Redu

HIP-HOP HISTORY: TOP 15 ALBUMS & SINGLES CHARTS, MARCH 1992

Posted by Billyjam, February 17, 2010 01:27pm | Post a Comment

Welcome to another installment in the Amoeblog Hip-Hop History series that takes a look back at rap/hip-hop album and singles charts from previous decades. Last month's Hip-Hop History chart showcased a Top 30 Hip-Hop Singles chart from February/March 1993. This time we flashback to a year earlier, March 1992, for both a Top 15 Hip-Hop Albums Chart and a Top 15 Hip-Hop Singles Chart both courtesy of The Source magazine's March '92 issue.

Considering the delayed turnaround period for magazines (from writing to actual publishing/street date) and the fact that many records stay on the charts for several weeks or even months (especially back then), you may notice that some of these March 1992 chart entries such as Ice Cube or Black Sheep were actually released in late 1991. You will also notice, as with the previous chart, which also hailed from the so-called "golden age" of hip-hop, that damn near every release on each chart is a quality one that has stood the test of time. The charts were based on a combination of sales and the tastes of the editorial staff and some of its writers (which included myself) at the time.

UMC's "One To Grow On" (Wild Pitch/EMI)


TOP 15 HIP-HOP ALBUMS CHART: MARCH 1992 (c/o The Source)

Moving beyond bipolarity - da meeja, favoritism, fairness and equality

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 17, 2010 11:25am | Post a Comment
Just a little pie chart to ponder... First, the demographic percentages of the US's major minority populations:

US demographics 

...versus the google results for their respective national, month-long cultural observances.

Cultural observance month google results

...which suggests that, as I assumed, Black History Month is far more of a concern than Hispanic Heritage Month, Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and Native American Heritage Month. Black History Month is all good, but why not recognize the rest? And, although not a minority, Women's History Month deserves some recognition too... as does Gay Pride Month. This year of the tiger, resolve to move beyond bipolarity! 

February 16, 2010

Posted by phil blankenship, February 16, 2010 04:30pm | Post a Comment
Legion movie ticket stub

Getting to Know...Xeno & Oaklander

Posted by Aaron Detroit, February 15, 2010 02:15pm | Post a Comment
Xeno & Oaklander
In the tradition of the DIY Minimal Wave and Synthpop bands of the 1980's, Xeno & Oaklander make music with strict guidelines: no digital instruments or recording. The New York-based duo of Sean McBride (of the quite excellent synth-project Martial Canterel) and Liz Wendelbo implemented the exclusive use of analogue synthesizers, instruments and equipment to write and record their darkly brilliant debut full-length, Sentinelle (one of our 20 Dark Music albums of 2009,on the always-superb Wierd Records). Recently, I got the chance to have the band expand on these principles as they were preparing for a series of upcoming globe-trotting live dates in New York, Rotterdam and Paris. Please, get to know...Xeno & Oaklander.

Black Light District: First things first. Why is analogue better than digital?


Liz Wedelbo:
Analogue is immediate and raw. Sean McBride: It's alive -- a current which can be shaped in infinite ways. It's quite elemental, like fire.

BLD: Sentinelle is available on CD and LP, but being an exclusively analogue band in a digital age, do you prefer vinyl? Your presentation as a band seems pretty complete in sound, concept and artwork – so in the age of downloads and streaming, how important is the physical piece to you?


LW:
I'm fond of the weight of objects. SM: The physicality of vinyl has some earthly origin. LW: ...with traces, marks and scratches.

Black Cinema Part III - the TV age and beyond

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 15, 2010 12:42pm | Post a Comment
This is the first installment in a three part history of early Black Cinema.
To read Part I, covering the independent Race Movie years of the 1910s and '20s, click here
To read Part II, covering the Hollywood Studio years of the 1930s and '40s, click here



In American silent films, minority roles were almost invariably filled by white actors in exaggerated and offensive make-up. Latinos in silent films usually played greasers and bandits; Asian-Americans usually played waiters, tongs and laundrymen; and blacks usually played bellboys, stable hands, maids or simply "buffoons." Not surprisingly, both Asian-Americans and blacks responded by launching their own alternative silent cinemas. But whereas Asian-American Silent Cinema quickly faltered, silent, black "race movies" flourished. In the 1930s and '40s, Hollywood began to phase out the practice of blackface (while continuing the practice of redface and yellowface) and successfully wooed race movies' sizable and thus profitable audience. By the 1950s, with its enormous budgets and star power, Hollywood had effectively co-opted and destroyed the independent Black Cinema known as race movies. The result was that there were far fewer examples of Black Cinema in the decade. In the years that followed, as TV chipped away at film’s dominance, a few black actors began appearing on the small screen in shows like Beulah (1950-1953) and The Amos 'n Andy Show (1951-1953) which, whilst hardly socially progressive, at least offered more acting opportunities for black actors.

Valentines Day Recap

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 15, 2010 09:45am | Post a Comment

A collection of passionate covers that may or may not resemble your V-day...

 

 

DOUG FIEGER, LEAD SINGER FOR THE KNACK, HAS DIED

Posted by Billyjam, February 14, 2010 07:25pm | Post a Comment

The Knack "My Sharona" (live)

The Knack
Doug Fieger, the lead singer for The Knack, has died after a prolonged battle with cancer, it was confirmed earlier today by The Detroit News and several other sources. The Detroit native was 57. Fieger, who was living in Woodland Hills, CA, was being treated for the cancer at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

Fieger and his band will always be best known for their 1979 mega hit single that he co-wrote, "My Sharona," which was the No. 1 Billboard pop record for six weeks straight. Likewise, the album it was culled from, Get The Knack, also spent six weeks atop the album charts.

A Los Angeles memorial service for friends and family of Fieger is being planned. For more information on The Knack visit their official website.


LOVE IS PRESSING A RECORD AS A TOKEN OF ETERNAL COMMITMENT

Posted by Billyjam, February 14, 2010 06:47pm | Post a Comment
Acco + Top Bill
Love is......well, love is many, many things, including, of course, the inspiration for innumerable songs. But perhaps the highest form of love is to make a record for the one you love as a token of your eternal commitment. Amoeblog reader and sometime contributor Acco, who lives in Japan and did the five part Graffiti in Yokohama Amoeblog series, did this when she got married to Top Bill some months back. For their wedding ceremony they had a special hip-hop song recorded and pressed up on 7" vinyl and nicely packaged to give away to guests at their wedding party.

The track, "Coupling Song," was produced by Top Bill, a Japanese hip-hop DJ/producer who lived for a short time in the Bay Area, with vocals by SoCal based Japanese transplant, producer/emcee Shing02, and with the song's hook sung by Emi Meyer. The design for the seven inch record and its packaging was all done by Acco, who told me that the idea for the record ties in with a Japanese tradition called Baumkuchen. "In the Japanese custom, we give Baumkuchen as gift at a marriage party. The Baumkuchen look similar to the rings of a tree. This mean a happiness to eternally." she said. "When I was a child, my mother told me that  'An old vinyl grow into Baumkuchen, it's very delicious.'" As pictured above, at the couple's wedding reception last October they played the "Coupling Song" single, which includes such romantic record-themed lyrics as "Every B needs an A, every B needs an A. Will you be my A? And I can be your B?" The full lyrics for this song appear below along with the audio for the vocal version. They pressed up 300 copies of the record (which has an instrumental version on side B) and saved some copies to give away but never sell.

February 14, 2010

Posted by phil blankenship, February 14, 2010 04:28pm | Post a Comment
From Paris With Love Movie Ticket Stub


(In which we learn the true story of St. Valentine.)

Posted by Job O Brother, February 14, 2010 11:54am | Post a Comment
cupid
Violating child labor laws is romantic!

It’s Valentine’s Day, dear readers, and you know what that means! Time to dress up in our festive knickers with the edible tassles and frolic in the underground glitter pits!

While many people celebrate this day with awkward, workplace greetings, or by forcing their children to bestow amorous cards upon classmates they normally wouldn’t even sit next to for a meal, or by showing their paramour their affection by gifting them confections with so much sugar and saturated fat in them they could kill a cat, still so many of us don’t know the origin of the day.

Valentine’s Day is one of the world’s most ancient holidays. Archaeological evidence has shown texts referring to the celebration of Valentine’s Day from as far back as 1965 AD, but we have reason to believe  Valentine’s Day may have been older.

In Great Britain, Paleolithic ruins suggest that there were, in midwinter (around our February) great festivals in which Stone Age dudes would construct impressively huge, heart-shaped boxes, in which nougat-shaped rocks were placed inside wrappers made of shale. These were then buried with females, who would die after eating them, because when you eat a lot of rocks you die.


(I hate the ones with coconut inside.)

In ancient Japan, during the Asuka period (538 to 710), the proto-Japanese Yamato politically gradually became a clearly centralized state, defining and applying a code of governing laws, such as the Taika Reform and Taih? Code. The introduction of Buddhism led to the discontinuing of the practice of large kofun.

Vinyl Princess: Interview with Author Yvonne Prinz

Posted by Amoebite, February 13, 2010 04:57pm | Post a Comment
vinyl princess

Yvonne Prinz is a co-owner of A m oeba Music who also happens to have written a new book geared toward teens called Vinyl Princess. The book chronicles a summer in the life of 16 year old vinyl infatuated Allie while she works at the fictional Bob & Bob's Records on Telegraph and blogs about her love of music.

Yvonne will be signing books at Booksmith on Haight Street in San Francisco February 18th! There will also be a musical performance at the signing by Matthew Edwards of The Music Lovers (who has a song on the mix cd that comes with the book) and accordianist Isaac Bonnell. You can also check out her Vinyl Princess blog!

WHAT RAPPERS ARE REALLY SAYING

Posted by Billyjam, February 13, 2010 04:19pm | Post a Comment

The above satirical video "Freestyle Rap Battle: Translated," based on footage of a battle between Hydrogen and Boost, is pure genius. I love how the voice over so perfectly captures the essence of so many stereotypical rap battles like this one with interpretative lyircs such as, "The alleged facts you've uncovered in regards to me are unfounded and without merit. My birthplace is not only vastly inferior to yours, but my neighbors were much more resilient. In terms of your claim to my sexuality, Sigmund Freud theorized that in some cases the semi-conscious mind manifests repressed desires, therefore leading me to believe that you, sir, are indeed the homosexual." Brilliant!

Tonight! The Last American Virgin w/ Special Guests in Los Angeles

Posted by phil blankenship, February 13, 2010 10:19am | Post a Comment

Amoeba Music and Phil Blankenship are proud to present some of our film favorites at Los Angeles’ last full-time revival movie theater. See movies the way they're meant to be seen - on the big screen and with an audience!




February 13

The Last American Virgin

Stars Lawrence Monoson, Diane Franklin & Paul Keith will appear IN PERSON, schedules permitting, to discuss the film!

New Beverly Cinema
7165 W Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Midnight, All Tickets $7

Advance tickets may be purchased at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/92896


February
February 20 Razorback
Nine hundred pounds of marauding tusk and muscle! Co-Presented by Shock Till You Drop. Russell Mulcahy will appear IN PERSON, schedule permitting, to discuss the film.

February 27 David Cronenberg's Videodrome
First it controls your mind...then it destroys your body

Briny Bivalve Soundings: Ween vinyl reissues hit the shelves this week!

Posted by Kelly S. Osato, February 13, 2010 07:41am | Post a Comment
ween vinyl reissue the  mollusk colored turquoise alternative rock 90's ocean jam dean gene 180 gram
For all of us who slept on the bus and thus failed to jump on the limited edition Ween 1996-2000 vinyl box set that dropped last September, don't fret, because all three Ween albums are now available for individual sale, finally! Personally speaking, I feel like I've been waiting for ages, however patiently, to get my paws on The Mollusk, pressed on 180 gram lushly marbled turquoise vinyl no less. The other two albums in the series of three released this week include 12 Golden Country Greats and White Pepper, also pressed on 180 gram colored vinyl, brown and white I believe, respectively. Happiness! 

Like many others to come of age in the early nineties, Ween played an important part in my grasping a hold of reality and flinging it as far as I imagined I could away from the mundane commonplace-ness of everyday happenings. I was first exposed to the idiot dance of Ween's Pure Guava by a small, motley crew of arty stoners I'd sometimes roll home with after school for lack of anything better to do. It didn't take long for me to need Ween; I became a fast fan when I discovered that their kooky alterna-jams are the best thing to ween dean and gene alternative rock listen to when everyone else around you is high and all you wanna do is interpretive dance. It helped that MTV liked them too and that, what with the awful death of Headbangers Ball, 120 Minutes made Ween's "Push th' Little Daisies" video a played out hit. I thought Ween could never top themselves after Pure Guava. I mean, Chocolate and Cheese is fun and 12 Golden Country Greats is a pants-ripping hoot and everything, but The Mollusk is, in my opinion, Ween's finest work to date. 

This Week At The New Beverly: February 12 - 18

Posted by phil blankenship, February 12, 2010 10:59pm | Post a Comment
This Week At The New Beverly

Our complete February calendar is online:
www.newbevcinema.com/calendar.cfm


Friday & Saturday February 12 & 13

The Exiles

1961, USA, 72 minutes
http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0054861/
written & directed by Kent MacKenzie
starring Mary Donahue, Homer Nish, Yvonne Williams
Wed/Thu/Fri: 7:30; Sat: 4:10 & 7:30, Watch The Trailer!

A cinéma vérité look at the rootless Native American community that once upon a time lived in Bunker Hill and hung out in downtown bars such as Club Ritz, this Kent Mackenzie film is a brooding picture of a darkly beautiful, long-gone Los Angeles.
- Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

AMOEBA MUSIC WEEKLY HIP-HOP ROUND UP 02:12:10

Posted by Billyjam, February 12, 2010 09:41pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Berkeley Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 02:12:10

Strong Arm Steady
1) Slum Village Fan-Tas-Tic Vol. 1 (Barak Records)

2) Slug & Murs + Aesop Rock FELT 3: A Tribute to Rosie Perez (Rhymesayers Entertainment)

3) Strong Arm Steady In Search of Stoney Jackson (Stones Throw)

4) Evil Empire/Drake It's Been A Pleasure (Urbane)

5) Young Lay Black N Dangerous (Atlantic)

That classic newly reissued Slum Village CD, Fan-Tas-Tic Vol. 1 on Barak Records, that has been a popular item at Amoeba San Francisco recently, is similarly doing well at the Berkeley Amoeba Music, where this week it is number one. Other chart entries at the Telegraph Avenue store include the Khaynree-produced 1994 release from Vallejo rapper Young Lay Black N Dangerous (this is the album that includes the killer track "Got 2 Survive" featuring Ray Luv, Mac Mall and 2Pac), the third installment in the FELT series (Slug and Murs, who teamed up with producer Aesop Rock this time out), and the Evil Empire Drake mixtape CD It's Been A Pleasure (with a very impressive guest list that includes Gucci Mane, Jay-Z, Lil Wayne & Young Money, Usher, Young Jeezy, & Rick Ross).

Watching Big Brother: Russia under Global Capitalism

Posted by Charles Reece, February 12, 2010 09:27pm | Post a Comment
Insight into another culture, or the Russian Big Brother is some crazy shit:


"[W]hen people stop being polite ... and start getting real":

Los Angeles' Pan-African Film Festival ...a year heavy on Nollywood and South African films

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 12, 2010 03:46pm | Post a Comment
Pan African Film and Arts Festival
Los Angele
s’s Pan-African Film Festival is currently in effect (February 10-17). I have a long-lasting love-hate relationship with it. On the one hand, their website (despite improvements this year) remains hard to navigate, is rife with typos, incomplete information and omissions. In other words, it’s inexcusably bad. How about a calendar, folks? 

In addition, every year I take issue with the selection of films. The programmers have a very odd definition of “Pan-African.” Last year was the worst, with the focus on the African diaspora coming at the expense of even a single African feature. Thankfully, this year there are several African features but still some questionable choices. It’s nice to see films about Africa’s many-but-usually-ignored non-black people, such as Finemachiyamoché, about Moroccan Jews, and Florida Road, starring members of South Africa’s sizable south Asian population. On the other hand, Forgotten Bird of Paradise, about Papua is, regardless of its possible merits, an embarrassing example of the organizers' colorist, transracialist equation of African-ness with pigmentation rather than actual African ancestry. The inclusion of an Iranian film, The Stoning of Soraya M., is a real head-scratcher. Are they equating Islam with African-ness now? Another odd choice is Darfur, directed by German hack Uwe Boll (BloodRayne 3, House of the Dead, Postal Zombie Massacre and other garbage).

Walter Fredrick Morrison 1920 – 2010

Posted by Whitmore, February 12, 2010 11:59am | Post a Comment
Frisbee inventor
The man credited with inventing the Frisbee, Walter Fredrick Morrison, died this past Tuesday. He was 90 years old and passed away at his home in Monroe, Utah. He had been battling cancer.

A former pilot during the Second World War, flying a P-47 Thunderbolt in Italy, where he was briefly a P.O.W., Morrison applied his knowledge of aerodynamics to tinker with the pie tins he was tossing on the beaches of Santa Monica with his future wife, Lu. In 1946 Morrison sketched out a design of a flying disc object he then called the Whirlo-Way. Two years later in 1948 Morrison found an investor, Warren Franscioni, who paid for molding the design in plastic, christening the new toy the Flyin-Saucer, (the previous year, 1947, was a big year for UFO sightings, with Roswell and Mt. Rainer/Maury Island incidents.) By 1954, Morrison found he could produce his own discs. With the help of his wife and further upgrades on the design they developed the Pluto Platter, the prototype of all modern flying discs. He would sell the discs at local fairs and dime stores, eventually the disc came to the attention of Wham-O Manufacturing. On January 23, 1957, Morrison sold the production and manufacturing rights for the Pluto Platter to Wham-O. Initially Wham-O marketed the disc as the Pluto Platter, but by 1958 they adopted the name Frisbee, the name college students in New England were calling the discs. The new official name referenced the Frisbie Pie Co., a local bakery whose empty pie tins were often tossed around like a Pluto Platter.

Five decades later, sales have surpassed 200 million discs, it is now a part of the landscape at beaches, parks, college campuses and rooftops world wide, spawning sports like Frisbee golf, and team sports like Goaltimate and Ultimate. An official disc golf course at Creekside Park in the Salt Lake City suburb of Holladay is named for Walter Morrison.

In 2001 Morrison co-wrote a book with Frisbee enthusiast and historian Phil Kennedy.

Walter Fredrick Morrison is survived by his three children and four grandchildren. The family is planning a service for Morrison's friends and relatives Saturday at the Cowboy Corral in Elsinore.

If You Don't Like Funerals Don't Kick Sand in Ninja's Face

Posted by Smiles Davis, February 11, 2010 03:10pm | Post a Comment

Ever heard the song "Shackles on My Feet" by RJ’s Latest Arrival? There’s a famous line in that song that goes, “I wanna hit the DJ with a baseball bat.” The truth is, we’ve all been there, we’ve all at some point or another, maybe even for just a millisecond expressed similar sentiments towards a loathsome music selector. Every once in a leap year the very opposite happens-- something new raises my hair, slaps me upside the head and forces me to pay attention. It’s tough to be original when everything has already been done. I’m so thankful DJ is what I write on the line next to the question, “What do you do for a living?” It’s completely unrestricting; I’m the driver of this ship, I can explore whatever I want. Recently, like an hour ago, I discovered Die Antwoord. Are you familiar? Let me just tell you the story gets tricky somewhere in the middle, but basically the Ali G of South Africa started a group with some of his cronies, and, as you can probably imagine, it’s brilliant, like sucking on a lollipop and finally making it to the gooey center. 

Die Antwoord is a “white-trash” personified, 90’s coat tailing, self proclaimed “zef” rap trio consisting of  Front man Ninja aka Max Normal, DJ Hi-Tek and then there’s Yo-landi Vi$$er. If Peaches and Bjork married and had a little blonde rapping baby girl, Yo-landi Vi$$er would be it. Together the ‘three-piece rap-rave’ is like The Three Stooges meets Napoleon Dynamite meets Dirt Nasty. It’s good, damn good, but...there’s always a but: “Amy Winehouse can sing and write, but…” “R Kelly is one of the greatest R&B producers of our generation, but…” and the list goes on and on. Die Antwoord is one big walking farce and folks don’t really know how to take to it. I say to that, it’s not Calculus people. Just look at the success of already establish tongue-in-cheek groups like Lonely Island and Flight of The Concords, Genius! If there’s one thing we’ve learned as a culture in the history of everything, it’s that good things always come with an abundance of haters.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF BLACK HISTORY MONTH

Posted by Billyjam, February 10, 2010 11:34am | Post a Comment
Dr Carter G Woodson
Since a lot is being blogged about Black History Month both here at the Amoeblog and in the blogosphere in general this month, I thought it might be worthwhile to take a moment to briefly examine the history of Black History Month itself, as well as present a general timeline of black history. One thing that amazes me is the short time span that Black History Month has been around, especially considering that African Americans have been a part of the American fabric dating back to the colonial times. Black History Month only officially started a short 34 years ago, even if the practice of observing black history dates back to the 1920's, which is still not that long ago in a historical context.

Originally known as Negro History Week, it was created in 1926 by Dr. Carter G. Woodson, a scholar with a Ph. D from Harvard who was the son of parents who were both formerly slaves. Woodson was so incensed that there was little or no proper written documented history of blacks in this country that he fought hard to initiate change. Up until that point on the rare occasion in which blacks were included in the American history books it was in a negative light -- they were typically portrayed as inferior human beings to the white ruling class.

A decade before initiating Negro History Week, Woodson laid the foundation by establishing the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History which began with careful documenting and writing the history of blacks in this country. The formation of that association led to the creation of the Journal of Negro History which, in turn, led to the launching of Negro History Week 84 years ago for which the second week in February was designated. Black History Week officially began in 1972, and four years later (in 1976) it became Black History Month. Below are a few random select key dates (by no means fully comprehensive) in American black history -- many officially documented by Woodson.

New Latin Releases For February 2010

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 9, 2010 12:56am | Post a Comment

Nacional Records
seems to be the only choice these days for any Latin Alternative music these days. While releases by artists such as Mexican Institute Of Sound, The Nortec Collective and the Zizek crew show the electronic future of the genre, Banda De Turistas reaches back to 60’s era Kinks for inspiration. Magical Radiophonic Heart contains fifteen songs of garage/psyche/pop bliss that would please the kids discovering a past that they never knew. Those kids that look retro yet weren’t born when The Dukes Of Stratosphere first came out, let alone The Kinks! Banda De Turistas is available on CD only.

Speaking of retro, Vampi Soul just released a couple of reissues. Spiteri, a band of Venezuelan brothers (Charles & Jorge) who moved to England, hung out with the likes of Traffic, The Animals and Osibisa and, in 1973, released a gem of a debut album. Spiteri, or as it was known in Venezuela, Disco De La Culebra (The Snake Record…because the band logo was a cobra), which was their only proper album. They were supposed to be Venezuela’s answer to Santana. But like the band’s original press release stated, “Santana is a rock band influenced by Latin music…Spiteri are Latin musicians influenced by rock.” Within the heavy 70’s rock and onslaught of percussion, one can hear Spiteri’s Venezuelan roots. As Jorge Spiteri put it, the band played “With The Beatles and Traffic in our minds and Joe Cuba in our hearts.” Sadly, due to immigration problems, most of the band started to leave England and the brothers were left with a line-up that consisted of them with English musicians. The band soon broke up but not before recording a killer funk version of The Spencer Davis Group’s “I’m A Man” that sounds like something Mandrill would have done. This release is available on CD and limited edition vinyl.

The other reissue Vampi Soul released this week is from El Gran Fellove, a totally underrated Cuban singer that made most of his career in Mexico. Born and raised in Cuba, he was a contemporary of the likes of Cachao, Perez Prado, Celia Cruz and Chano Pozo. He was known for his scatting, a style that he later dubbed the “Chua Chua.” El Gran Fellove could have been much bigger if it wasn’t for his loyalties. He was asked to play in both Machito and Tito Puente’s groups while performing in New York in the late fifties, but turned them down because he didn’t want to cause friction with the singers that those groups already had. On top of that, he had a career in Mexico. There, he starred in a few movies and released recordings on the RCA label. Vampi Soul's collection, Mango Mangue, focuses on the work he did in the 60’s on RCA, including the song “El Jamaiquino,” a Ska/Mambo fusion that has been the desires of deejays for many years. This release is available on CD and LP.

Nuart Noir

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 8, 2010 10:40am | Post a Comment

I haven't been to Sawtelle's major movie house since their first screening of The Apple back in the early 2000's, but this week I may just make the trek. Their UK noir festival continues through Thur. & they've got  some serious gems lined up.  Although most films that get peddled as UK noir are in fact nothing more than dull crime pictures, the Nuart has lined up a fantastic little festival. Programming includes Peeping Tom, It Always Rains On Sunday, Brighton Rock, The Fallen Idol & The Third Man.



The Nuart

11272 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA
90025
(310) 281-8223


Mon Feb. 8th
It Always Rains On Sunday 7:30
Peeping Tom 5:30 & 9:35

Tues Feb 9th
The Fallen Idol 7:30
Brighton Rock 5:40 & 9:35

Wed Feb 10th
The Fallen Idol 7:30
The Third Man 5:30 & 9:35

Thursday Feb 11th
Brighton Rock 7:30
It Always Rains On Sunday 5:40 & 9:35


 

Who's Lying in the Shadow of the Statue? Lost Season 6, "LA X"

Posted by Charles Reece, February 7, 2010 10:00pm | Post a Comment
lost last supper

One of the big questions from last season on the show Lost was "what lies in the shadow of the statue?" To which Richard Alpert replied, "Ille qui nos omnis servabit" ("He who will save/protect us all"). Latin's the secret language of the Others, and being able to answer that question demonstrates a knowing fidelity to Jacob, the island's god-like seeming protector/ruler/primary servant. Those with the answer have been (it seems) in personal contact with Jacob, rather than merely receiving his orders through some tertiary representative. Complicating the exegesis here was the appearance last season of another figure in the statue's shadow, Jacob's nemesis (as yet unnamed, but many have suggested Esau for good reason -- which is only reinforced in Season 6's premiere when he, in the form of Locke, states his rasion d'etre is to go home, or, one might say, reclaim his birthright -- "home" would appear to be the Temple, where he once resided as the smoke monster, but is now kept out using that protective ash). At the beginning of Season 5's finale, while watching the arrival of the Blackrock (an old pirate ship), there was a God versus Satan sort of dialog between Jacob and his nemesis, expressing their respective positions towards man (qua island visitors):

Nemesis: They come, they fight, they destroy, they corrupt. It always ends the same.
Jacob: It only ends once. Anything that happens before that ... is just progress.

A straightforward reading would be the tried and true and utterly boring good versus evil, but Lost never does anything straightforwardly, so I ain't buying it. First, notice the pun on 'lies' in the question: both Jacob and the Nemesis are shown existing by the statue, but, like that old riddle of the doors (cf. Labyrinth), we viewers don't know which one might be lying, leading to damnation, or telling the truth, leading to salvation (or if they're both liars). The Nemesis has certainly been a deceiver, but it might prove in the service of truth (e.g., the classic case of hiding Jews from Nazis). The clearest case of his deception is in taking the form of Ben Linus' dead daughter, Alex, in order to get Ben (who's a master of deception in his own right) to follow the Nemesis' other avatar, Locke, in his plan to kill Jacob (and thereby giving the reason why Ben wasn't supposed to return to the island after leaving it at the end of Season 3). Which brings up the second problem: who's plan necessitated the death of Locke and the return of the Oceanic 6 to the island?

lost nemesis locke kurtz

The apparition of Jack's father, Christian, informed Locke that he'd have to die (as a "sacrifice") in order to bring the 6 back (there was a time loop involving Richard Alpert, but basically it was Christian). Now, it's questionable whom this apparition is serving, but it seems clear enough in Season 5's finale that Jacob was the one taking an interest in having the 6 come together on the island in the first place (he's shown visiting each of them at a point in their lives). Furthermore, he gives Hurley a guitar case whose content -- a big ankh with a message inside -- plays a crucial role in Season 6's premiere, namely in getting his Temple followers to repair Sayid (who's shown dying and then resurrected at the end of the episode). Thus, the loophole that the Nemesis needed to kill Jacob came about through the latter's own machinations, namely the former begins to use Locke's form only after he's died due to Jacob's devising. Being fully aware of the rules of the game he's playing, it is to counter the Nemesis' likely (preordained?) move (i.e., the taking of Locke's form) that Jacob requires the real Locke's body to be returned to the island (as material counterevidence to this guy who looks and sounds like Locke). My point is that both of these island entities practice deception to get their "game pieces" into place (Jacob, for example, withholds foreknowledge of Sayid's death to get Jack and his team to the temple), and we viewers have no reason for suspecting one is more benevolent than the other. So what about Sayid?

lost sayid resurrected

It would seem that the resurrected Sayid is being set up as a new body for Jacob to go against "UnLocke," pointing to some simplistic Manichaean battle on the horizon. And, sure, we see Sayid in a variety of crucified Christ poses leading to his being baptized in the Temple's fountain. But the Last Supper promo poster (shown at the top of this post) suggests a third ambiguity. UnLocke is in the position of Jesus, Sayid as Judas. And, as I discussed previously, Lost has so undermined the use of faith as a crutch (cf. the Nemesis' take on Locke's dying thought: "'I don't understand.' -- Isn't that just the saddest thing you ever heard?") that even if the narrative comes down to two opposing forces, the decision to side with one over the other will in and of itself be unlikely rewarded with some Divine assurance, gratitude or redemption. Note the common element of determinism in both of the theistic players' interpretation of their game: Jacob's version is that of teleological progress to one point, a straight line being drawn through possible worlds. The Nemesis' view is that of the eternal return, the same players and events going round and round. (The alternate universe that's now been set up could support either view.) Locke's faith reduced him to a point on the line, or cog in the wheel. As UnLocke suggests of his source material, there's something admirable about Locke's fidelity to this newfound order and his rejection of the "pitiful life he left behind," but, then again, Jack's assertion of his own agency, his existential resistance to the deterministic order by attempting to nuke it out of existence, has left him alive.

February 7, 2010

Posted by phil blankenship, February 7, 2010 07:31pm | Post a Comment
District 13 Ultimatum movie ticket stub

(In which we consider Paul Robeson.)

Posted by Job O Brother, February 7, 2010 03:22pm | Post a Comment
houdinilaurie anderson houdini
Harry Houdini vs. Laurie Anderson

My actual heroes in this world are few and disparate. From Harry Houdini to Laurie Anderson, from John Lennon to Mrs. Mary Eales, they reflect people who may inspire and impact me with their art, their political activism, their bold-faced chutzpah, or any combination thereof.

But perhaps no one embodies all these traits to such heightened super-awesomeness for me than the great Paul Robeson.

paul robeson smiling
Rad.

Robeson was born in Princeton, New Jersey, in 1898. His father was an escaped slave-turned-church minister; his mother was from a Quaker family, and died tragically when Paul was six, which isn’t funny at all, so don’t laugh.

Paul received a full academic scholarship to attend Rutgers University, which I hear is a pretty good school, though I’ve never been there myself because I’m allergic to schools. Seriously. If I even step foot on a campus I start itching, sweating, and my head comes completely off and falls to the ground and rolls away.

Black Cinema Part II - Race Movies - The Hollywood Studio Era

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 7, 2010 12:13pm | Post a Comment

This is the first installment in a three part history of early Black Cinema.
To read Part I, covering the independent Race Movie years of the 1910s and '20s, click here
To read Part III, covering the TV Age of the 1950s and '60s, click here


In the silent film era, most roles for minority characters were filled by white actors in make-up. As a result, Asians and blacks began making their own, alternative cinemas. But whereas Asian-American silent film quickly faltered, black silent film flourished and a great number of race movies were cranked out to eager and under-served black filmgoers. 

By the 1930s, though yellowface and redface continued to be common practice, blackface began to disappear from the mainstream as Hollywood began efforts to woo the audience it had previously been content to insult. This meant there were many new opportunities for black actors, albeit mainly as musicians, porters, chauffeurs, waiters, hat check girls, maids, bootblacks, convicts, bartenders, bone-through-the-nose Africans or buffoons. Because of the improving but still less-than-satisfying opportunities afforded by Hollywood, many black actors supplemented their Hollywood bit parts with simultaneous careers in race movies.

HIP-HOP AND SUPER BOWL XLIV THEMED RAP SONGS

Posted by Billyjam, February 7, 2010 12:12pm | Post a Comment
Unlike the most recent World Series, which showcased hip-hop music when Jay-Z (along with Alicia Keys) performed, today's big Super Bowl XLIV halftime show will feature rock n roll with The Who performing live. Reportedly their set should include the songs "Baba O'Riley," "Pinball Wizard," "Tommy, 'Can You Hear Me?'," "Who Are You," and "Won't Get Fooled Again." But rock music at a Super Bowl halftime show is nothing new; it almost always tends to be rock or pop music, along with university marching bands. Recent years have included Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, and U2. But Prince, James Brown, and, of Nascourse, Janet Jackson have also performed over the years. Some hip-hop or rap flavored halftime performers that have represented include Queen Latifah in 1998, Nelly in 2001, and again in 2004, along with P.Diddy and Kid Rock when they were on the small stage; that same halftime was when Justin Timberlake was on the main stage with Janet Jackson during her much talked about and controversial "wardrobe malfunction."

Come think of it, the perfect song for a halftime performance would be Nas doing his great 1992 debut single "Halftime"...  but that's probably not gonna happen. However, you might hear his music, or other true hip-hop artists in a Super Bowl ad. One thing that is guaranteed is that there is always hip-hop popping up in the much hyped & mega costly TV commercials that premiere during the Super Bowl. Last year during a Bud Light Lemon ad the music of indie Oakland hip-hop crew The Baby Boy Da PrinceHigh Decibels ("That Dude") was exposed to millions of new ears. And odds are there will be hip-hop in the slew of brand new commercials being unveiled during today's big game in Miami. There is also a lot of pre game hip-hop surrounding the Super Bowl. In fact, for yesterday's scheduled Miami Big Game Extravaganza, Lil Wayne along with Sean Kingston and Trey Songz were all supposed to be performing as a warm up, but the show, all set to take place at Jungle Island, was canceled at the last minute due to some contractual dispute.

AMOEBA MUSIC WEEKLY HIP-HOP ROUND UP 02:06:10

Posted by Billyjam, February 6, 2010 06:30pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music San Francisco Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 02:06:10

lil wayne

1) Lil Wayne Rebirth (Cash Money/Universal)

2) The Madlib Medicine Show 1, Before The Verdict featuring Guilty Simpson (Stones Throw)

3) Oh No Dr. No's Ethiopium (Stones Throw)

4) Thavius Beck Dialogue (Mush)

5) Eligh Gandalf's Beat Machine Level 3 (Legendary Music)

The terms "highly anticipated" and "long overdue" each accurately apply to Lil Wayne's Rebirth on Cash Money / Universal, this week's number one hip-hop album at Amoeba Music San Francisco. However, it seems the term "disappointing" could also apply based on the overall negative review the album has received since its release earlier this week. The artist's seventh studio album and the follow up to his 2008 multi-platinum full-length, Tha Carter III, Rebirth is (as written about here) a repeatedly delayed release that should have come out almost a year ago. Due to one thing or another (many speculate that Lil Wayne's label insisted it needed more work & hence postponed its arrival in stores) the release date for the popular rapper's rock/hip-hop hybrid album (with Carter on the cover posing with electric guitar on lap) had been postponed about a half a dozen times in all. But now that Rebirth is finally available, what is the consensus on the music? Overall not good.

Mountain Man Chats - A New Band Made Up, In Fact, of Three Lovely Ladies...

Posted by Miss Ess, February 6, 2010 03:03pm | Post a Comment
Mountain Man is my favorite new band -- the most enjoyable new music I've heard in quite some time. It's made up of three women, Molly and Amelia, who live in Vermont, and Alex, who lives in Virginia. They formed just last spring, and when they sing together their connection is magical. Their sound is a pleasing mix of the very old and the very new. They each write and contribute songs about nature and life as they live it, delicate yarns that are at the same time hardy and strong, and it's so refreshing to hear these three distinct voices coming together and darting apart in completely unique combinations. I find their songs haunting. You can hear some of them here.

They are embarking on their very first ever West Coast Tour right now, so please check out the tour dates here and read on for an interview with these fabulous gals! They will have a new 10" available at Amoeba sometime very soon.

mountain man

Miss Ess: How did you all come together and realize your voices could combine well? What did it feel like then? What does it feel like now?

Molly: Wow. It felt refreshing, my whole body was vibrating. Singing with Alex and Amelia is so gratifying because the voice is so vulnerable and pure, to mix my voice with other voices and share it with the world is the ultimate form of living in the world (for me, right now). mountain man

Contact Highs, Lows: Awaiting Mad Men, Loving Kurosawa's High and Low

Posted by Kelly S. Osato, February 6, 2010 01:23pm | Post a Comment
I can't say I've ever counted myself as a big fan of Akira Kurosawa's films, but I can say that, despite having never completed a healthy film study of the man's abundant works, I've heartily enjoyed Kurosawa film I've seen, the latest being a first time viewing of his 1963 thriller High and Low (Tengoku to Jikoku).
akira kurosawa high and low movie review criterion dvd balck and white 1963
I love a film that is simultaneously heavy on the symbolism and rife with gorgeously composed frame after jaw-dropping frame of gray scale captured with every possible shade and highlight of true black and true white intact. The good people at Criterion love this sort of film too, perhaps almost as much as they love Kurosawa's handiwork (more than twenty-six of his films can be obtained as Criterion Collection issued DVDs), or perhaps almost as much as Kurosawa loved to cast internationally acclaimed film star Toshiro Mifune as his leading man (I reckon Mifune has Kurosawa to thank for his fame and good fortune). There's a lot of love in the room. But what really makes this cinematic gem sparkle and shine presently in my eyes is the fact that it took a little of the edge off of my pining for the release of the Mad Men Season Three DVD set.
akira kurosawa film review high and low toshiro mifune 1963 criterion collection dvd
High and Low is the first full-length Kurosawa film I've seen that wasn't a period piece (which also means that it was my first look at Mifune in a suit and tie instead of his de rigeur samurai threads) and I'd like to think that it offers an somewhat accurate look at an affluent family living in 1960's urban Japan. I find the overall look of the interior sets very similar to Mad Men, save for occasional signs of traditional and cultural differences that mark the setting as somewhere other than Madison Avenue, which is a reminder of how long we've all been living under the some of the same aesthetic influences. The story, however, is a clean cut one with as complicated a network of writing credits as one can get (which in all probability resembles Mad Men more than I'll ever know), what with director Kurosawa teaming up with Eijiro Hisaita, Ryuzo Kikushima, and Hideo Oguni to adapt a screenplay loosley based on Hayakawa Shobo's translation of Evan Hunter's novel King's Ransom, written by Hunter under the pen name Ed McBain --- whew! I can only hope there was a lot of love in the room for all those involved!
akira kurosawa high and low dvd film review toshiro mifune 1963 criterion collection
Storywise, High and Low reads like a detective thriller and plays like film noir. Short of saying, "don't take my word for it, find out for yourself" (cheers to you, Levar Burton), High and Low stays busy with plot complications unfolding like a budding branch succumbing to rising heat all the while dazzling the eyes with a veritable smorgasbord location settings (a glorious beach, a summer home in the mountains, a garden in full blossom, a booming port-side dancehall, back alleys dripping with smack addicts, crowded police briefing rooms, a hot hospital waiting room, corridors of speeding commuter train) and stellar cinematography. All of this framing the eerie quiet of a well-feathered nest about to unravel and a man who finds himself (and his loved ones) caught in the center of a no-win shit-storm. This is a great movie.
high and low akira kurosawa film dvd criterion toshiro mifune 1963
One thing that I'd like to mention: the original title of the film, Tengoku to Jikoku, when directly translated from the Japanese reads as Heaven and Hell. However, I understand why the translator here chose to affix what appears to be a pretty-near-but-not-plum, slight mis-translation of the title in favor of more straightforward, unassuming one. I believe the reason for going with the title High and Low is suggestive of the many interpretations such a header provides for a complex film steeped in multiple struggles operating on many levels be it class-related, or altered emotional, behavioral or mental states of being. In any case, the title is a beginning in more ways than one; this movie has stayed in my thoughts for days and highs and lows keep surfacing. Maybe a Kurosawa bender is in order. Or maybe just more noir-y, Mad Men reminiscent films to further dull the longing. Maybe both.

Cartoons

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 6, 2010 11:14am | Post a Comment

February 5, 2010

Posted by phil blankenship, February 6, 2010 12:16am | Post a Comment
Frozen movie ticket stub


A Giacometti sculpture sells for an ungodly amount of $$

Posted by Whitmore, February 5, 2010 09:58pm | Post a Comment
Alberto Giacometti record setting auction
Crisis, what financial crisis!?
 
Earlier this week at Sotheby's Auction House in London, a rare life-size bronze statue by Swiss sculptor Alberto Giacometti (1901 – 1966), L'homme qui marche I (Walking Man I) broke the record as the most expensive piece of art ever sold at auction. You’d better sit down for this: $104.3 million. The “fast and furious” bidding was over in less than eight minutes. According to Sotheby's, at least 10 people were in on the trying to pin down the iconic cast. The final price was five times higher than the pre-auction estimate.
 
The price, which includes the buyer's premium, barely eclipsed Pablo Picasso's Garcon a la Pipe, which sold at auction for $104.2 million in New York in 2004. But that was back in the heady days of the boom -- fast flying Wall Street, Krug Clos du Mesnil Champagne breakfasts, Clay Aiken CD’s, real estate’s unstoppable climb -- back then Facebook was just a blip in the dotcom ether. This astounding auction result suggests that though the financial crisis still looms, the art market has survived and its doomed collapse and catastrophic time bomb is no longer ticking down.
 
The bronze of a man walking, cast in 1961, was first acquired in December of that year by legendary New York art dealer Sidney Janis, who bought it from the Galerie Maeght in Paris. Janis debut it at his gallery in 1968. This time around, the statue was sold by the German banking firm Commerzbank AG,Alberto Giacometti who obtained it in 2009 when they took over the Dresdner Bank. Dresdner had purchased the sculpture in 1980.
 
Giacometti's previous personal best at auction took place back in 2008, at Christie's New York for the piece Grand Femme Debout II, (1959-60). That piece sold for a relatively paltry $27,481,000.
 
William Barrett, author of the classic mid-century study, Irrational Man: A Study in Existential Philosophy (1962) wrote that the attenuated forms of Giacometti's figures reflected the existentialist view that modern life was empty and increasingly devoid of any meaning. "All the sculptures of today, like those of the past, will end one day in pieces... So it is important to fashion ones work carefully in its smallest recess and charge every particle of matter with life." Giacometti claimed his forms were not based on the human figure but the shadow that it cast.
 
Just before the Sotheby’s auction, the buzz on the street was that the Giacometti might actually hit $50 million, though all the heavy hitters scoffed at such a ridiculous notion. No one in their right mind thought it would hit and top $100 million.
 
Sotheby's of course did not identify the buyer, saying only that it was an anonymous telephone bidder.

Little Tokyo - 小東京

Posted by Eric Brightwell, February 5, 2010 01:12pm | Post a Comment
This blog entry is about the Los Angeles neighborhood of Little Tokyo. To vote for other neighborhoods to be the subject of a blog entry, click here. To vote for Los Angeles County communities, click here. To vote for Orange County neighborhoods, vote here.

Little Tokyo Village Plaza
Little Tokyo Village Plaza

INTRODUCTION TO LITTLE TOKYO


Map of Little Tokyo
Pendersleigh & Sons' Official Map of Little Tokyo


Little Tokyo (or 小東京) is a small neighborhood in downtown Los Angeles. It's generally considered to be bordered on the west by Los Angeles Street, on the east by Alameda Street, on the south by Third Street, and on the north by First Street.

This Week At The New Beverly February 5 - 13

Posted by phil blankenship, February 5, 2010 11:14am | Post a Comment
This Week At The New Beverly

Our complete February calendar is online:
www.newbevcinema.com/calendar.cfm


Friday & Saturday February 5 & 6

Revanche
2008, Austria, 121 minutes
http://us.imdb.com/title/tt1173745/
written & directed by Götz Spielmann
starring Johannes Krisch, Irina Potapenko, Andreas Lust
Fri: 7:30; Sat: 3:20 & 7:30, Watch The Trailer!

Nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar

TEN YEARS LATER & DREAM'S LEGACY CONTINUES TO GROW

Posted by Billyjam, February 4, 2010 06:15pm | Post a Comment
Mike DREAM Francisco
Senselessly gunned down and killed during a random street robbery on San Pablo Avenue in Oakland ten years ago this month, Bay Area graffiti legend Mike "DREAM" Francisco's legacy has grown exponentially in the decade since his tragic murder. And tomorrow, Friday, Feb 5th friends, family, fans, along with those who never even met the late artist but who were somehow touched by his life, his work, and/or his spirit, will congregate en masse for the big annual DREAM DAY.

The sure to be packed event, which takes place at the New Parish on 18th Street near San Pablo in Oakland, will feature graffiti artists, DJs, b-boys and emcees all celebrating, through their respective elements of hip-hop culture, the life and legacy of the man known to many as King DREAM.

As well as graffiti art by DREAM's graffiti collective, the TDK CREW, there will be music provided by a long list, including F.A.M.E., emcee Equipto, DJ Apollo, Shortkut, Fuze, Myke One, Sake One, The Bangerz, and DJ Platurn. Former Amoeba Music Berkeley employee DJ Platurn is among those who actually never met DREAM but whose life was impacted by DREAM's work. "The first time I heard of Mike Dream was through Saafir's Boxcar Sessions. Not only did his art grace the cover but his voice on the record resonated with community and a sense of pride in his craft," Platurn commented earlier today. "I never knew the man personally, being a recent L.A. transplant around that time, but he was always someone that I knew to be a hero and legend in the Bay Area hip-hop game and I'm proud to honor his legacy in any way that I can."

Electronic New Releases 02/01/10 - Four Tet, Mark E, Lindstrom, Pop Ambient, Monolake & more...

Posted by Oliver / Matt / Jordan, February 4, 2010 03:43pm | Post a Comment

Four Tet
There Is Love and You
Domino

Kieren Hebden embraces the sharp and brazen musicality of his 2003 album Rounds, but with a more club-friendly feel. Hebden's
interdisciplinary sonic collage is at full force here, with melodious house, 80s synth design, repetitive minimalism a la Cluster and Steve Reich, italo disco, and dusty jazz records chopped up and redefined. (MT)

Listen - "Angel Echoes":




King Midas Sound

Waiting For You
Hyperdub

This debut very much sounds like a ghostly carnival procession out of a psyche ward -- and in line are wayward dub daydreamers and heart-broken lovers rockers'. A deeply narcotic album reminiscent of Tricky's Maxinquaye, crooked hip hop nodding to RZA's darkest productions, with male female vocals densely lacing the songs in smoked paranoia. A magnificent killer of noir-like austere grandeur, a modern classic. (MT)


Listen - "Outer Space":


Dave Rawlings Machine - A Friend of A Friend and Two Amoeba Instores!

Posted by Miss Ess, February 3, 2010 03:07pm | Post a Comment
If you are anything like me, you have been missing Gillian Welch and David Rawlings, two of the finest songwriters around! There hadn't been a new release from the twosome (who usually record under the misleading single name "Gillian Welch") for 6 years! And sure, they've toured some, always playing the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival here in SF, but us diehards, we've been waiting what feels like forever some new material here!

And finally...

david rawlings machine friend of a friend

I'm so pleased to report that the Welch/Rawlings drought is over. New project Dave Rawlings Machine released A Friend of A Friend this past November! And, even better (if you are in the Bay Area or Los Angeles anyway), they will be playing instores at Amoeba Hollywood Feb 4 and Amoeba SF Feb 9!! The time has come at last to get our fix.gillian welch david rawlings (See pics from the SF instore here!)

I finally got to hear A Friend of A Friend this past week. The album's production and arrangements have a more upbeat and orchestrated feel in spots than any of the albums under the Gillian Welch banner. I tend to like my music as doom and gloomy as it can get, so this change feels a bit strange, but when you really listen to the lyrics, in spots it's as much of a downer as you want it to be! It's just the music itself on several tracks that feels more buoyant than usual. The album is kind of Brian Wilson-esque in that way (and only that way!). It's also more padded out with strings, singers and such, I think due to the collaboration with Old Crow Medicine Show.

Happy Birthday James Joyce

Posted by Whitmore, February 2, 2010 05:36pm | Post a Comment
... as for the following blog, what can I say, perhaps an apology for my nod to Finnegan, but what the hell, “A man's errors are his portals of discovery.” – James Joyce.
 
2 February 1882, sprowled future of his fates yawled, James Augustine Aloysius Joyce, becaught the fornicreators John Stanislaus Joyce and Mary Jane Murray. Elderest of ten progeny; though two sibships swerved absent from life, bowed by typhoid, James by a commodius viscous of recirculation back past, found his chance out of Rathgar and Clane o’ County Kildare. Re-sur, inventilated, as Stephen Hero violer d'amores, fr'over tracted rails, passen hub rearrived as a Young Dubliner, there to truduce a shining star and body! O’ Fate fanespanned most high heaven, the skysign of soft destiny to the lashstroung side of Nora Barnacle, re-nee Molly Bloom. Thus the unfacts, he did possess, too imprecisely, yes, a few retaletolds to idendifine the individuone, his sly slopperish matter of history. But within time, the facts chase towards the east in quest, past the scraggy isthmus to Europe Minor Himalayousness to his penisolate war in the heights of topsawyer's rocks, Zürich, where the Hero writ the poemsies, writ Ulysses. Arms nixed with larms James Joycedangling, appalling Killykill toll, a toll. The camibalistics fall (bababadalgharaghtakamminarronnkonnbronntonner), clashes cease and none so soon, never too soon the pharce for the nunce come to a setdown. Soon Joyce’s secular phoenish and arc flight settled in the centre-ville de Paris, la Ville-Lumière. Here nouvel wordsies flocked to the papyrush, swiftease on the leftlet banks drawn to the age. Oftwhile balbulous eyes, poorly in life since a youth spent in Baile Átha Cliath, attempts goodly cheirurgery neuflike times, but success – a minutias worth, so addle liddle a pawn, suchess.
 
Somethemores Vita animas wakes, comes to Leopold Bloom, Molly Bloom and Stephen Dedalus and Malachi Buck Mulligan, Finnegan, Paddy Dignam and so many more dreamydeary pholks, brings pocketbarely of farthingscads trinkets by way of green clapboard Shakespeare & Cie. Came Exiles, Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Pomes Penyeach, Finnegans Wake, breathed and bred in the century loinings of wordscrafts, the broadest way immarginable.
 
Then, onset of the new nonanon camibalist, offwall entailed at such short notice the pftjschute of Joyce. Never a solid man, he spent retaled days in linens and in leaps of mind in alltitude and malltitude. Auld age not, but Stercoral perforation did, sent him on exodus alone. Joyce relapsed brought about by tragoady and indespite transfusions, slipslid into a cataleptic dreamsy. In grey grays, he lifted away at 2:15 AM on 13 January 1941, blackguardise the whitestone hurtleturtled out of heaven to resclaim his soul. As oaks of old now lie in peat, elms leap where ashes churn, he rests in Fluntern Cemetery within a rroarslieds of the Zürich Zoo. A skyerscape of the most eyeful entowerly was James Joyce. Whish! Far calls. Coming, far! End here. Again! Take. Mememormee! Till thousandsthee. The keys to. Given. A way a lone a last a loved a long the


Help Haiti with One Click

Posted by Amoebite, February 2, 2010 12:51pm | Post a Comment
Do something good for the world...by buying the latest from your favorite artists!

How?!

For the month of February, Amoeba will be offering some insanely low prices on hot new releases, and matching all online sales dollar for dollar, with the money going to Doctors Without Borders to help the people of Haiti. Pick up any of a select group of bumpin' new releases online from Amoeba, and help out a very important cause at the same time! It couldn't be simpler. For a full list of titles, please click here.

doctors without borders

You know you wanted that new Charlotte Gainsbourg where she's working with Beck that everyone's talking about or the new Beach House, Teen Dream! You know you were drooling over Robert Pattinson in New Moon and Twilight, so you must have Little Ashes, where he takes his acting chops to new levels playing Salvador Dali! Stop Making Sense is out on Blu-Ray! What better way to celebrate the release than to both get it and also give back? Sade's brand spankin' new, highly anticipated Soldier of Love is obviously gonna blow it up, and now you can get it and do good simultaneously! Help out your record collection and people in desperate need in one fell swoop!

Jukebox

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, February 2, 2010 11:40am | Post a Comment
12 hit parade tunes12 top hits
cristo salinas con los dinamicosbill haley and his comets rockin' the joint!the chantels
david ruffin me 'n rock 'n roll are here to staylet's play fats domino
doug sahm juke box musicbest of the willis brothersgeorge jones all-time greatest hits
hard goods warner brothers lpdiesel smoke dangerous curves and other truck driver favoritesdazz band jukebox
kate taylor it's in therethe jive bureaux stick itmeco swingtime's greatest hits
osmonds the proud onesociety of seven flashbackpops and prado

out this week 1/12 & 1/19 & 1/26...surfer blood...vampire weekend...beach house...

Posted by Brad Schelden, February 1, 2010 04:40pm | Post a Comment
pee-wee herman
The year is flying by so quickly -- it is already February! I don't know about you, but I'm not really ready for January to be over yet. I feel like I say that every month! There have been some great new releases this last month and there are so many exciting things coming up soon. I will tell you all about them later. I just saw the amazing Pee-Wee Herman Show this last week. I highly recommend it if you can get down there to see it! It really is worth it! I hope that they decide to take the show to Broadway or at least get it up to San Francisco. Pee Wee has tons of fans up in the Bay and I am sure that they would love to see it. I know that I would be dying for it to come up there if I still lived up in SF. The show really was all that I could have hoped for and so much more. I got the chance to meet him a couple of years ago when he did an instore at Amoeba in San Francisco and it was fun, but this was really so much better than just meeting him. I also saw him do a live interview a couple years back. Nothing can really compare to this stage show though. I envy the people that got to see the live show back in the 80's at the Roxy, but like most of my generation, I grew up watching the show... or at least spent my 20's watching the show on VHS and DVD. It is hard to even explain the brilliance of Pee Wee unless you are actually a fan. It is just an amazing hilarious show! Pee-Wee's Playhouse was a kids show but also an adult show meant for grown up kids. It works on both levels, and there's really not much else out there like that. I can't bear to watch most things meant for kids. But the humor in PWP can be understood by both kids and adults. It has something for everyone.

Who's Really Listening?: The Minimal Wave Tapes, Volume One

Posted by Aaron Detroit, February 1, 2010 04:00pm | Post a Comment

Over the last few years, Amoeba Music Hollywood has stocked a slew of obscure but quite excellent and endlessly exciting limited-edition vinyl reissues of DIY European and North American dark and minimal analog synth-based music from the 1980’s -- all thanks to the stellar underground label Minimal Wave. Originally these recordings were released in ridiculously small quantities either on cassette or vinyl by the bands themselves or by equally-unknown labels local to the band. Albums by the likes of Spanish Industrial pioneers Esplendor Geometrico, the Belgian Linear Movement (featuring Peter Bonne of New Beat progenitors A Split Second), and French New Wavers Martin Dupont have all recently seen the light of day on quality vinyl pressings via the loving care of the Minimal Wave label.

Minimal Wave’s label head/überfan Veronica Vasicka struck a deal late last year with Peanut Butter Wolf’s Stones Throw label to issue a series of “best-of” compilations featuring choice cuts from the MW roster and beyond. Recently, the popularity of new minimal synth-based bands like Cold Cave and Xeno & Oaklander has heightened, making this the perfect time to issue the first in the series of Minimal Wave/Stones Throw team-ups, The Minimal Wave Tapes, Volume One (available on CD and 2LP). It is a wonderful thing to hear these rescued gems and decades-old transmissions mostly recorded in isolated bedrooms miles away from any bustling cityscapes. Volume One very much invokes a familiar nostalgic feeling, like a mixtape would from your way-cooler friend or older sibling did in your formative years. Vasicka functions here as that cooler friend or sister and thankfully, she doesn’t mind spreading her cool around -- making us ear-opening mixes from her even-cooler record collection.

Amoeba Hollywood World Music Best Sellers For Jan. 2010

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, February 1, 2010 09:13am | Post a Comment


1. Charlotte Gainsbourg-IRM
2. Aventura-Last
3. Shakira-She Wolf
4. Mahssa-Oyun Havasi Vol. 1
5. Manu Chao-Baionarena
6. Charlotte Gainsbourg-IRM (LP version)
7. Tinariwen-Imidiwan: Companions
8. V/A-Colombia!
9. V/A-Tumbele! Biguine, Afro & Latin Sounds from the French Caribbean, 1963-74
10. Buika-El Ultima Trago

Even though Charlotte Gainsbourg’s IRM has only been out for the last week, it has already sold well enough to take the top spot on Amoeba Hollywood’s World Music chart. IRM was produced by Beck and was the first anticipated release of the year. The vinyl version of IRM also took the sixth spot and probably could have sold more had we not sold out over the weekend. Last year, Charlotte's father, Serge Gainsbourg, was the only artist to also have the CD and vinyl version of a record in our top forty best sellers of the year, with the reissue of Histoire De Melody Nelson.

At number five is Manu Chao's second live album, Baionarena, which includes two CD’s and one DVD. Baionarena was recorded and filmed over the last couple of years while supporting the La Radiolina release. Having caught two shows during this tour,  Baionarena triggers many great memories I had attending the shows. Baionarena is also available on vinyl, which also comes with the DVD.