Thursday, August 23, 2007

The rain slacked off, and the air is filling with smoke again. There are big clouds overhead, and they are welcome to pour out some more water at anytime.

Remembering my friend Georgio at: Theater X-Net

Starring: Ida Rubinstein Belle Epoch Russian/Parisian beauty.
Ida's Places in Paris -- from my first jet-lagged day by the Seine.
Read more about Ida in Sisters of Salome by Toni Bentley

Visit: Michael's Montana Web Archive
Theater, Art, Flash Gordon, Funky Music and MORE!
Spitfires of the Spaceways
UPDATED! Wilma Deering & Dale Arden to the rescue; Bodacious Princess Aura I; Hapless Aura II; The fiery Emperor Ming; The Orson Welles Rumor Debunked; and BOTH incarnations of Jean Rogers!
Read my latest Spitfires in Context essay.

Thanks to Jim Keefe (Visit his Website) -- the LAST Flash Gordon illustrator of the 20th Century, and Flash's first illustrator of the 21st, for his recommendations -- HERE!

Charity Alert: Keep that resolution to click on The Hunger Site every day.

In The Community: Big reception at the Hockaday Museum of Art tonight! Dr. van Kirke Nelson will talk about Ace Powell and his art at 4 PM. Our Executive Director scored a deal on some new museum pedestals and display features, so the place will be kind of redecorated this evening.

Media Watch: LIVE music -- Freekbass from Cincinnatti played at Flanagan's in Whitefish last night. I wore my black Bootsy tee, which got a double-take from road manager Paul. "I thought I was the ONLY guy in the world who had that shirt!"
Chris (bass), Josh (guitar), and Chip (drums) were all pleasant guys. The audience was dancing about ten minutes into the first set, and never really stopped. They liked it best when both front guys were vocalizing, and there was a complete song-vibe going on. The jams didn't get everybody all the time, unless they had segue'd from a song. The tall-ceilinged room with big glass walls did NOT help clarify vocals at all, but their new song Sin City got a fabulous response.
Chris' bass-playing was awe-inspiring indeed! He's a protege of bassmaster Bootsy Collins, and there were a few of Collins' older tunes spread around the setlists -- Psychoticbumpschool was a particularly well-received selection. Parliament/Funkadelic's Red Hot Mama was slammin' -- played at close to double-time. Chip is an excellent drummer and fleet soloist, so he was able to keep all the rhythms together. Josh had the necessary skills to play good melodies and still jam against the roar of the Mutron Bass. I didn't think that making up Chris to look like a Buckethead clone was worth stopping the show -- my personal opinion is to use this riff sparingly, and as comedy. Even Montana audiences know about Buckethead, and simple imitation would be very unwise if it offended people who would otherwise enjoy a laugh.
There was one unfortunate moment which wasn't the bands fault at all -- a bunch of drunken patrons fell over each other on the dance floor, then some dumbass struck somebody else -- he was rushed out of the place immediately. We picked a guy off the floor who was nearly unconscious. He tried to brace himself up by leaning on the tables, but those things just tipped over and made a bad situation worse. About HALF the audience left after that incident for reasons I'll probably never know.
The second set hit it's climax for a couple of dozen enthusiastic dancers -- including Amber the barrista from Columbia Falls. Freekbass' encore was welcome to everybody except the doorman and the cops waiting outside. I got my merchandise autographed above the loading dock in the back while the doorman watched the front nervously -- nobody was fined.

A digitized collage of Freekbass and Bootsy, in costume at the back watching Chris plunking his bass up front.

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