June 19, 2002


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8 Days a Week

June 19-26, 2002

THE HOMEGROWN, remarkably successful San Francisco Electronic Music Festival – working this year for the first time with Footloose – brings an ambitious lineup of composers and performers together for a two-week stand. The theme this year is 'Electric Words,' which, practically speaking, means that in one way or another all of the artists will be working with electronics, text, and human voice. From there, the performances will be as diverse and surprising as can be. Cocurators Amy X Neuberg and Pamela Z have put together a lineup that – even in this iconoclastic end of the world – goes in a number of directions. Both of the aforementioned will perform, along with 11 others, including Joel Davel and Don Buchla, Laetitia Sonami, Wobbly, and Allison Hennessy. Bay Area artists have always played an important role in the world of electronic music, and the festival itself was born in the rich, deep well of creative energy and experimentation that are so much a part of the region. Now in its third year, the festival has done a remarkable job of showcasing that; this year should be no exception. Through Sun/29. Opens Thurs/20. Runs Thurs.-Sun., 8 p.m., Venue 9, 252 Ninth St., S.F. $10-15 sliding scale. (415) 289-2000, www.sfemf.org/electricwords.html. See Music listings for a complete schedule. (J.H. Tompkins)

June 19

Wednesday

Welcome home His roots are in the Oakland hills, and his pedigree is beat (his late father was poet Paul Tulley), but Paul Wood's sensibilities are juke joint all the way , so he titled his new, sophomore CD Blues Is My Business (Lucy Records). A former member of the late John Lee Hooker's Coast-to-Coast Blues Band, Wood recorded his album in Memphis and came up with an impressive set of original tunes marked by tight grooves, occasional blasts of R&B-style horns, and lots of intensely expressive guitar soloing. Whether he'll make good on his boast to someday "go back to Montclair in a long black limousine," his homecoming is cause for celebration, and he's happy to provide the high-voltage soundtrack. 9 p.m., Biscuits and Blues, 401 Mason, S.F. $7.50. (415) 292-2583. (Derk Richardson)

Behind the controls Do the math: the 38th installment in the three-times-a-year, ODC-sponsored Pilot program is 'Pilot 38: Choose Your Own Adventure,' meaning this showcase for emerging choreographers has been around for more than 12 years. That's a lot longer than most dance companies manage to survive. Four of the current crop of participants are best known as dancers: Ami Seiwert from Smuin Ballets/S.F., Lauren Marcogliese from Robert Moses' Kin, Alicia Adame from Yaelisa and Caminos Flamencos, and Ami Student from Rebecca Salzer Dance Theater. They are quite a disparate group, but what they – together with the remaining performers, Lisa Tenorio and Jamie Ray Wright – have in common is the conviction that creating choreography is the next logical step if they want to keep growing as dancers. 8 p.m., ODC Theater, 3153 17th St., S.F. $10-$12. (415) 863-9834. (Rita Felciano)

Rich Caesar When David Daniels first sang with the San Francisco Opera (in 1998), he'd recently become perhaps the world's best-known countertenor – a male singer with a high voice, not falsetto, in some cases mezzo soprano-like – thanks to profiles in magazines such as the New Yorker. Around then, in the opera zine Parterre Box, Daniels was asked to name his dream role. His answer: Cesare in Handel's Giulio Cesare. Daniels even went on to suggest an ideal Cleopatra: the frequently flawless soprano Ruth Ann Swenson. Four years later his dream has become a reality; Giulio Cesare is premiering at the War Memorial Opera House with Daniels and Swenson as the famous fatal pair. 7:30 p.m., War Memorial Opera House, 301 Van Ness, S.F. $23-$155. (415) 864-3330. (Johnny Ray Huston)

June 20

Thursday

Northwest songbird If you missed Laura Kemp when she played last week's San Francisco Free Folk Festival, don't pass up the opportunity to see this talented singer-songwriter tonight at the Rose Street House of Music. And if you did catch Kemp at the fest, it's likely you've become an instant fan and are eager to see her take the stage again. Hailing from Eugene, Ore., the avid gardener and bicyclist has four albums under her belt and has captivated countless listeners with her full voice, skillful guitar playing, and songs that range from sassy rockers to plaintive ballads. If you like Nancy Griffith or Shawn Colvin, you can't go wrong with Kemp. Shelly Doty and Kemp tourmate Mare Wakefield also play. 7:30 p.m., Rose Street House of Music, 1839 Rose, Berk. $5-$20 sliding scale. (510) 594-4000, ext. 687. (Cheryl Eddy)

June 21

Friday

Crime time Hard-boiled novelist James Ellroy, master of American noir and lean prose, grew up on the mean streets of Los Angeles and went on to pen dark, underbelly-revealing works like The Black Dahlia, The Big Nowhere, and L.A. Confidential. Now he's back with The Cold Six Thousand, a sequel to his American Tabloid and an exploration of the cold war that uses the assassinations of John F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, and Martin Luther King Jr. as bookends to its events. The "Demon Dog" reads from his latest today in Berkeley and tomorrow in San Francisco. Side note for fans: Ellory's memoir, My Dark Places, will be filmed with David Duchovny playing the author, giving Ellroy bragging rights possibly only Hunter S. Thompson (who was portrayed by Johnny Depp) can top. 7:30 p.m., Cody's, 2454 Telegraph, Berk. Free. (510) 845-7852. (Also Sat/22, 7 p.m., Park Branch Library, 1833 Page, S.F. Free. 415-863-8688.) (Eddy)

June 22

Saturday

Paint it back In March a pack of unknown malcontents vented their hatred of women and of the Arab community in a most offensive manner: defacing the Maestrapeace (meaning "Woman: Teacher of Peace") mural that adorns the Mission's Women's Building. Help right this upsetting wrong by throwing down your dollars at 'Rising above Hate,' a benefit to help restore the mural to its rightful glory (as well as improve the building's security). A multicultural slate of performers – including drummers from Loco Bloco, spoken word stylist Avotcja, and more – highlight the event. 8 p.m., San Francisco Women's Building, 3543 18th St., S.F. $10-$20. (415) 431-1180, ext. 17; www.womensbuilding.org. (Eddy)

Set the traps You never see a write-up of 7000 Dying Rats without some mention of their song titles, so why buck the trend? "Cocaine Keeps Me Thin and Sexy," "Bands that Play Funk Blow," and "Open the Realm (I Left My Keys in There)" are a few choice examples of the Chicago band's skill in that department. Musically, they blend Anal Cunt-style grindcore, falsetto-stricken glam rock, bad penis jokes, and the occasional hapless lounge-funk jam into an obnoxious yet oddly charming entertainment smorgasbord. They call their style "straight-up comedy grind," although drummer Weasel Walter has promised less comedy and more grind this time around. We'll see. Tonight 7000 Dying Rats play at the Covered Wagon Saloon with Cattle Decapitation, Watch Them Die, Vulgar Pigeons, Severed Savior, Carneceria, and Morbosidad; Monday they play at Kimo's with Burmese, the Quixotic, Magic Markers, Control R Workshop, and Josh Plague. 6 p.m., Covered Wagoon Saloon, 917 Folsom, S.F. $5. (415) 974-1585. (Also Mon/24, 9 p.m., Kimo's, 1351 Polk, S.F. $5. 415-885-4535.) (Will York)

June 23

Sunday

New approach For the past two years the Acme Observatory Contemporary Performance Series has offered a dedicated venue for experimental and improvised music in the Bay Area. Tonight Acme presents the first concert in this summer's Triaxium West series, in which a group of local experimental musicians perform compositions by Anthony Braxton. The ensemble features seasoned Bay Area improvisers, including Gino Robair, Matthew Sperry, Dan Plonsey, John Shiurba (a Bay Guardian staffer), and Matt Ingalls. Echoing the collaborative, impromptu aspects of Braxton's work, Triaxium members share in choosing the pieces and instrumentation for each performance. Tonight's show also features Aaron Rosenblum, who plays psych- and noise-influenced guitar music with visual accompaniments by Harry Rosenblum. 8 p.m., Tuva Space, 3192 Adeline, Berk. Free-$20 sliding scale. (510) 649-8744. (Elizabeth Lobsenz)

June 24

Monday

In appreciation While every jazz musician and his brother or sister is paying homage to Monk, Miles, Coltrane, and Ellington these days, few are those who come to praise and play the music of the late saxophone, bass, clarinet, and flute master Eric Dolphy. However, after a four-year hiatus, the Bay Area's volunteer Jazz in Flight organization is mounting its fifth Tribute to Eric Dolphy, giving props to the idiosyncratic genius 38 years after his death. Musical director-flutist James Newton, an authentic heir to Dolphy's legacy, has assembled an especially inspired lineup, featuring the World Saxophone Quartet's Oliver Lake on alto, pianist Jon Jang, drummer Anthony Brown, and in a rare Bay Area performance, bassist Dr. Art Davis, who recorded with Dolphy in 1962 and is renowned for his work with Coltrane. 8 and 10 p.m., Yoshi's, 510 Embarcadero West, Jack London Square, Oakl. $20. (510) 238-9200. (Richardson)

June 25

Tuesday

Choice cuts The Gay and Lesbian Dance Festival is taking a break this year, but 'Fresh Meat,' a two-night showcase by queer and transgendered artists, aims to fill the void. If the past is any indication, they'll do it with wit, passion, and an in-your-face attitude, creating a context for voices that might not be heard otherwise. Some of the participants are almost mainstream: Steamroller, Monique Jenkinson, and Sean Dorsey frequently perform around town. Others – including Deep Dickollective, House of Vogue, and Gigi Otálvaro-Hormillosa – are just now adding their perspective to what the organizers have called "fresh, fierce, and tasty queer and trans performance." What can you expect? In the artists' own words they are "over-educated black radical phaggots," "femme queens," and "female hip-hop expressionists" who will perform in works about "transphobia," the "potential for subversives and fluid identities," and "binaries created by colonial constructs of race and gender." Through Wed/26. 8 p.m., ODC Theater, 3153 17th St., S.F. $12-$15. (415) 863-9834. (Felciano)

June 26

Wednesday

Hello sailor Those slinky, soaked washerwomen who drive the O Brother, Where Art Thou? convicts to distraction probably represent the most high-profile recent sighting of a common folk-art presence: the water spirit. The Museum of Craft and Folk Art succumbs to the lure of mermaids, sirens, and other aquatic creatures with its latest exhibition, 'Sirens and Snakes: Water Spirits in Folk Art and Legend.' Waiting to seduce museumgoers are numerous pieces from across the globe, including a beaded Voudou flag from Haiti; carved masks from Oaxaca, Mexico; and art paying tribute to Mami Wata, a snake charmer, from the west African country of Benin. The exhibit illustrates how the mythology of water-dwelling spirits affects cultures that depend on the sea for survival and how one theme has managed to capture the imaginations of artists around the world. Check it out, but be sure you keep your boat away from those rocks. Through Sept. 1 (gallery hours: Tues.-Fri. and Sun., 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.). Museum of Craft and Folk Art, Fort Mason Center, Bldg. A, Marina at Laguna, S.F. $1-$5 (free first Wed.). (415) 775-1861, www.mocfa.org. (Eddy)

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