Amoeblog

CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON IN 3-D @ PARAMOUNT TONIGHT

Posted by Billyjam, July 10, 2009 07:44am | Post a Comment

Despite the effortless and seemingly endless dissemination of information via all the new tools of this digital age (Twitter,  text messages, Facebook, blogs, emails, etc.), I still value learning about stuff via such creature from the black lagoonold school ways as simply reading about it in the paper. That's how I found out about the screening of the classic monster movie Creature From The Black Lagoon at the Paramount Theater in Oakland tonight. An ad for the 3-D screening was on the back page of this week's Bay Guardian immediately below an ad for Amoeba Music.
 
In this greatest of movie monster flicks, directed by Jack Arnold, the plot goes as such: Gill man Dr. David Reed and his girlfriend Kay Lawrence (Richard Carlson and Julia Adams) join a scientific expedition into the Amazon's "Black Lagoon" to investigate an alleged missing link between man and fish. The 1954 film offered pioneering underwater photography, with cinematographer Charles Welbourne pushing the envelope and dispensing of the standard (up til then) static camera shots by using a portable moving camera that followed the film's swimmers. This classic 1950s film went on to inspire two sequels: Revenge of the Creature and The Creature Walks Among Us, although neither were as popular as the original.
 
Creature From The Black Lagoon, which is available on DVD but not in 3-D (look for it at Amoeba Music) is best seen on the big screen and enjoyed in glorious 3-D. At tonight's screening in downtown Oakland's wonderfully preserved art deco Paramount, 3-D glasses will be provided as you enter the theater. And the recession-friendly price of only $5 (including Paramount Classic Movie Nights cartoon, classic newsreel, and trailers before the main feature begins) is the best value you will find for your weekend night out, not to mention the art deco architecture masterpiece that you also get to enjoy. Parmount Classic Movie nights also the live Wurltizer organ serenade plus a raffle - chance to win free prizes.

Paramount Movie Classics' screening of Creature From The Black Lagoon is at the Paramount Theater @ 2025 Broadway, downtown Oakland at 8pm tonight, Friday July 10th, with doors opening at 7pm. Box office opens at 6pm.

AMOEBLOG'S SUMMER GRAFFITI SERIES: PART I, INTRO

Posted by Billyjam, July 4, 2009 11:58am | Post a Comment
DREAM R.I.P.

This is the kick-off post in a seven-week summer series of Graffiti Amoeblogs, focusing on the art of graffiti and running every Saturday from now, July 4th, until Saturday, August 15th, 2009 -- the date that will mark what would have been the 40th birthday of Mike DREAM Francisco, the legendary Bay Area graffiti artist who was tragically murdered nine years ago on the streets of Oakland. Rest in peace, DREAM. Your legacy will live forever.

Included in the numerous blogs in this series will be an interview with DEMER of the longtime NYC Wallnuts crew, who decades later is still making graffiti art, and who currently runs the store Graffiti Comix in Belleville, New Jersey, where he combines his two life-long passions/hobbies -- graffiti and comic books. There will also be an interview with OB, who runs the graffiti supply (and record) store All City in Dublin, Ireland. That same Graffiti Amoeblomiami graffitig will also take a look at the Irish graffiti scene.

James & Karla Murray, the hard working and prolific graffiti photo-journalists (Broken Windows, Burning New York, Store Front, Miami Graffiti), will also be interviewed here and high-quality images of their best New York City and Miami graffiti shots will also be included. Future Amoeblogs will also focus on Cali graffiti and its makers, and of course there will be a whole blog dedicated to DREAM, who was an amazing artist. 

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TIME FOR SOME ACTION AT OAKLAND DANCE STUDIO

Posted by Billyjam, December 10, 2007 04:25pm | Post a Comment

"Dancing helps you heal"

                     - Corey Action

In North Oakland's Rockridge district, on a stretch of College Avenue nearby Diesel Books, Pegasus Books, George & Walt's, not far from new hip clothing store Dapper and scores of other mom & pops; in the 5400 block sandwiched in between The Rockrigde Masonic Center and the new eclectic Atomic Garden is the vibrant New Style Motherlode Dance Studio where, for the past seven years, Corey Action and his stable of able dance instructors have been teaching various forms of hip-hop based dance (including a Bay Area Style class) along with a healthy, positive outlook on life.

"Time For Some Action" boldly reads one poster in the window at 5451 College Ave. Inside, on one recent early evening, the place was packed with many urging the call to take action: dancing bodies, brimming with energy, all vibing to the pulsating music's groove that fused it all together. Owner, instructor, and recording artist Corey Action recently took time out to talk to AMOEBLOG about his studio and his passion, dance.

AMOEBLOG: Seven years for any small business, especially a teaching facility located in an expensive high rent area like you are in, means you have beaten the odds. To what do you attribute your success?

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OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA: PHOTO GALLERY PT I

Posted by Billyjam, September 22, 2007 09:30am | Post a Comment
      

I love Oakland, CA and I have always enjoyed taking random pictures around and about "the Town," as it is fondly known by locals. These photos, the first in a two-part series (shot over the past few months),  were all taken within about a mile radius of downtown Oakland. Thematically disconnected, they are merely various images that appealed to my personal sensibilities, such as the above shot in Chinatown Oakland one Sunday morning when it is a-bustle with folks grabbing dim sum from the numerous eateries dotted throughout the area (Well worth a visit if you've never been. Meanwhile, just down the street on Broadway, at Jack London Sq, is the farmer's market, although the Saturday-only farmers market over near Grand Lake Theater is a much more fun market, in my opinion). The above shot is about the only one of a person I took, as I gravitate more towards inanimate objects. Plus, I don't like to invade peoples' personal space. And if I ever do take pics of people, I always ask their permission first -- as with the gentleman above.

The shot below is by Lake Merritt, and while art-cars might be a common sight around the Bay Area, it is only when you travel outside to other states/places you realize that it is not quite so commonplace to see such intricately decorated vehicles. I have spent many hours just stopping to admire and study the countless art-cars I have seen around Oakland and Berkeley. They're amazing. I love the detail and the creative use of various found and recycled objects (including lots of toys) that people put into decorating these cars and I admire their makers for not wanting to adhere to the strict, bland uniformity of merely leaving their cars exactly as they rolled off the assembly line. These are truly unique vehicles. The picture below with the koala bear is the roof of this particular art car while the second last picture is of the hood of this same auto, which is just so creatively and lovingly decorated with keys, beads, and cocktail drink stirrers -- all cemented into a perfect form and design. 

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SHOWTIME AT THE APOLLO TRYOUTS IN OAKLAND THIS WEEKEND

Posted by Billyjam, July 26, 2007 04:49pm | Post a Comment
This weekend, on Saturday (July 28th), from 10AM til 1PM, is your chance to be a star when the world-famous Apollo Theater of Harlem, NY will make its once a year visit to California in search of "amateur" talent for upcoming Showtime At The Apollo shows back in New York City at the historic 125th Street venue. This year the producers of the show will only visit five American cities outside of New York in search of talent, so this is a great opportunity to try out if you are an aspiring entertainer, whether you are a singer, rapper, spoken-word artist, comedian, dancer, musician, etc. And on Saturday their only West Coast tryouts will be held at the Oakland Convention Center located at 1001 Broadway in downtown Oakland.  

If you plan on attending the tryouts (for which there is no charge and which are based on a first come, first served basis) I suggest you get in line earlier than the scheduled 10AM door opening time. The first 300 in line will be admitted to audition. But even though the cut off time is 1PM, the actual tryouts inside the auditorium will last long past that -- until 6PM or possibly even later, so pack a sandwich and bring lots of water and sunscreen (you might be in line outside for hours). And another tip is to get lots of rest the night before so you are at your best.

A couple of months ago I attended one of the twice-a-year tryout sessions held in New York and wrote about it for the New York Press. What amazed me most was the level of quality talent that showed up to audition. I enjoyed the tryouts even more than the actual Amateur Night at the Apollo (held every Wednesday for the past 73 years) and am looking forward to attending the Oakland session -- I am scheduled to write a report about it for the San Francisco Bay Guardian.

If you go on Saturday be prepared, and know that you will have only up to ninety seconds to display your skills -- so, if for example you are a singer with a backing track burnt on CDR or cassette, have it ready in your hand to pass over to the sound tech person. The contest is open to all ages but children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Below are the exact rules of the audition. For even further information visit the Apollo Theater website.

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