Monday, December 10, 2012

Cancel All of Your Plans, Purple Reign Is Coming to Town

Posted By on Mon, Dec 10, 2012 at 10:27 AM

Purple Reign, the Prince tribute act that once appeared on David Letterman's show, is coming to the Casino del Sol Event Center, which is monumentally amazing news. Sure, December 29 seems like a terrible time for the casual concert-goer to plan to see a show, with the biggest going-out night of the year a few days later, but really, you need to see this band. It's not just a faux-Prince performing (backed by an excellent band), but there's a Morris Day impersonator included in the package as well and he's accompanied by someone pretending to be Jerome. There's just too much entertainment wrapped up into one evening to stay home.

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Friday, December 7, 2012

Comix Friday: The Modeens in "Fred's Rib Shack!"

Posted By on Fri, Dec 7, 2012 at 5:34 PM


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You Should Read This Story About "Fairytale of New York"

Posted By on Fri, Dec 7, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Truly, there is no greater opening line to a Christmas song than "It's Christmas Eve in the drunk tank," so why not spend a few moments today reading about the history of "Fairytale of New York," the Pogues and Kirsty MacColl classic celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.

The entire article is great, but this paragraph really gets to the song's appeal:

The song's brilliance is sealed by its final verse when MacGowan protests, "I could have been someone", and MacColl shoots back: "Well, so could anyone." Then MacColl accuses, "You took my dreams from me," and MacGowan responds, with all the warmth he's been withholding: "I kept them with me babe/I put them with my own." So in its final iteration the chorus is no longer a tauntingly ironic reminder of better times but the tentative promise of reconciliation. "You really don't know what is going to happen to them," says MacGowan. "The ending is completely open."

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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Here's the Christmas Video You'll Wish You Could Unsee

Posted By on Wed, Dec 5, 2012 at 4:57 PM

I'm sorry. I'M SO SORRY.

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Jason Willis' Catnip Video Is Headed to Sundance!

Posted By on Wed, Dec 5, 2012 at 3:05 PM

Hey, guys. Remember that item we posted right before Halloween featuring a few videos shot by Tucsonan Jason Willis? And remember that one video that was a brilliant parody of "classroom drug educational film(s)" featuring kitties strung out on catnip? You know, the one that was selected to screen at last month's American Film Institute's AFI Fest, in Los Angeles?

Well, we just got word via a Facebook post that the video (and, by extension, Willis) has just received its biggest honor yet: Catnip: Egress to Oblivion? has been selected to screen at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

Here's what Willis posted on his Facebook page:

Okay everyone — I'm not exactly sure how to process this news yet so I'm just going to post it.

Here goes:

My short film Catnip: Egress to Oblivion? has been named as an official selection at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

No, honestly. It's playing at the Sundance Film Festival. For real.

In January I'm going to travel to Utah, and go to the Sundance Film Festival where my film Catnip: Egress to Oblivion? will play.

Five times.

At the Sundance Film Festival.

In 2013.

Congratulations, Jason!

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9Q+1: Ryan P. Christie

Posted By on Wed, Dec 5, 2012 at 2:00 PM

Ryan P. Christie, 34, grew up in Tucson and graduated from the UA in 2001 with a degree in creative writing. Christie currently works as a rock-climbing instructor/guide at Rocks and Ropes and as a rigging specialist with Rhino Staging. From 2003 to 2005, he was a music writer for He also played guitar in Big Bottom with his brother Shayne in the late 1990s.

What was the first concert you ever saw?
Alice in Chains in 1992 at the Tucson Convention Center. It was in the North Exhibition Hall, though, which was smaller, and mosh-y-er.

What are you listening to these days?
The new Dinosaur Jr., the Heartless Bastards, Superchunk, Yuck and lots of Dr. Dog.

What was the first album you owned?
Album was Prince, Purple Rain; tape was Aerosmith, Pump; on CD, I got Pearl Jam, Ten, and Blind Melon’s first one at once.

What artist, genre or musical trend does everyone seem to love, but you just don’t get?
Dubstep. Is it just the same annoying wahwahwah sound that defines it? I just don’t get it.

What musical act, current or defunct, would you most like to see perform live?
AC/DC with Bon Scott, the Pogues with Shane MacGowan, or James Brown circa ... whenever.

Musically speaking, what is your favorite guilty pleasure?
I am a closet Jay-Z fan. I don’t know about his new stuff, but I played the crap out of his earlier ones.

What song would you like to have played at your funeral?
“Exit Music (For a Film)” by Radiohead, but the creepy version of the little kids covering it, or “Back in Time” by Huey Lewis and the News (with accompanying magic trick where my body disappears).

What band or artist changed your life, and how?
Kermit the Frog’s “Rainbow Connection.” When I saw that singing frog, I knew anything was possible.

Figurative gun to your head, what is your favorite album of all time?
Paul Simon, Graceland. Best road trip album of all time. And I remember my dad buying it when I was a kid, and that was the first time he let me sit on his lap and drive his Corvette around the parking lot.

What song should everyone listen to right now?
“Mahna Mahna” from The Muppet Show.

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Jazz Legend Dave Brubeck is Dead at 91

Posted By on Wed, Dec 5, 2012 at 11:40 AM

Dave Brubeck, the legendary jazz pianist and composer most famous for "Take Five," his an experiment in using unusual time signatures in jazz combos written by saxophonist Paul Desmond, has died at the age of 91.

From the Chicago Tribune:

Brubeck was one day short of his 92nd birthday. He died of heart failure, en route to "a regular treatment with his cardiologist,” said Gloyd.

Throughout his career, Brubeck defied conventions long imposed on jazz musicians. The tricky meters he played in “Take Five” and other works transcended standard conceptions of swing rhythm.

The extended choral/symphonic works he penned and performed around the world took him well outside the accepted boundaries of jazz. And the concerts he brought to colleges across the country in the 1950s shattered the then-long-held notion that jazz had no place in academia.


"For as long as I’ve been playing jazz, people have been trying to pigeonhole me,” he once told the Tribune.

"Frankly, labels bore me."

Brubeck was notable, in this writer's opinion, for his willingness to challenge what was considered typical for the day, from his aforementioned forays into meters that were rarely, if ever, used by his jazz contemporaries to his humanist beliefs, pushing for greater social integration during a difficult period in our nation's history.

While he will be missed, his tremendous body of work ensures he won't soon be forgotten.

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Buy Some Tapes, Save a Dog

Posted By on Tue, Dec 4, 2012 at 4:08 PM

Burger Records, the mostly-cassettes label that has released some of my favorite albums of the year, released a new compilation today in conjunction with its sister label, Wiener Records, that looks friggin' awesome.

The Wiener Dog Comp contains 71 unreleased tracks by 71 Burger-associated acts, spread over two cassettes. With songs by bands including Thee Oh Sees, Redd Kross, Jaill, King Tuff, The Eeries, Spanish Moss, The Blank Tapes, Pop Zeus and tons more, it almost warrants running out and buying a cassette deck just to listen to it.

Further incentive: The comp also contains songs by three Tucson bands — Lenguas Largas, The Resonars, and Freezing Hands.

Even more incentive: All of the proceeds from sales go toward an operation to remove a growth from the belly of Popcorn!, the adorable wiener dog featured in the video above. Any leftover proceeds will be donated to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. So it's like a triple-win!

If you want in on the action, get to it: Only 500 copies were pressed. Oh, and it's only 10 bucks per copy.

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