photo by mike watt
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mike watt’s hoot page
photo by mike watt
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mike watt’s hoot page
Bob Dylan was on one hell of a roll during his 1966 tour, his first with an electric band backing him. It’s the period right in between Highway 61 Revisited and Blonde on Blonde, working with The Band, and night by night they are refining and polishing one of the grandest, most perfect sounds ever heard in rock. Every night they get in front of an audience that’s likely to be hostile and dismissive, unappreciative of their efforts. As often happens when an immovable object meets an irresistible force, sparks fly.
The song selection on this two-disc set from the London show, culled from the massive 36-disc set The 1966 Live Recordings, is identical to the one heard on The Bootleg Series Vol 4, the official release of the much-bootlegged recording that was commonly mis-labeled as being from the Royal Albert Hall, but was in fact from the Manchester concert nine days earlier. That’s the one where one guy screams out “Judas!” as the group is about to launch into “Like A Rolling Stone,” prompting Dylan to heckle his heckler – “You’re a LIAR!” and then tell the band to “play fucking loud!”, which they do. Continue reading
FOURTH ANNUAL GRAND PARK + THE MUSIC CENTER’S N.Y.E.L.A.
The city of Los Angeles’ goal to make this Grand Park event the Times Square of the west coast seemed awfully grandiose four years ago, but with spectacular 3D light projections on city hall and acres of music and events, this free event has definitely lived up to that dream.
The night will include three stages with live music, DJs, dancing, large scale inflatable art, and food trucks. The Music Center’s N.Y.E.L.A. takes place from 8:00 p.m. on December 31, 2016 to 1:00 a.m. on New Year’s Day, and will cover 90 acres from The Music Center Plaza to City Hall (Hope Street to Spring Street) and from Temple Street to 2nd Street. No alcohol, family-friendly. Check out the website for event schedules and their extremely detailed rules (No vaping, no selfie sticks, no costumes, no coolers).
X AT THE ROXY
X is one of LA’s most revered institutions, first-wave punks who still bring the sweat and the danger to every show they do. Going just as strong after 40 years, they will be helping you ring in the new year at The Roxy for the highly reasonable price of $35. As of this writing, there are still tickets available.
Southern California winters are very close to perfection. Sure, we grumble when the temperature dips below 65º and try to be happy when the rains come, knowing that to complain of rain during a drought is truly looking a gift horse in the mouth. Even with mostly blue skies, many of us who grew up in colder climates have a certain nostalgia for true winter weather, even if we swear we’d never live with it again. Snow was bittersweet growing up in New York State. The first snow: magical, Christmas snow: necessary, blizzards & school snow days: exciting. But other than that, snow is a drag. Digging out, shoveling sidewalks, scraping off windows, de-icing car locks, driving and walking in it finally culminates in the depressing month of February, when the melting, slushy snow is dirt grey and you just want it to disappear. To be able to visit the snow and experience its fun without the daily drudgery is really the ideal situation. Continue reading
“BrainDead Season 1” (Paramount) pleased a lot of critics but very few Nielsen families, so unfortunately, this Season 1 set comprises the complete series run. Too bad, since this series from Robert and Michelle King (“The Good Wife”), about a documentary filmmaker (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) who discovers that alien bugs have consumed and assumed the minds of Washington politicians, is not only clever and smartly acted (with Tony Shalhoub as a garrulous Republican senator as the standout), but possibly prescient. How else to explain this election year? Paramount’s four-disc set addresses that in a featurette which discusses the events of the election influenced their stories; the Kings and their cast, respectively, are front and center in two other extras.
There’s more body takeover by alients in “Preacher Season 1” (Sony), with Dominic Cooper as a small-town minister who finds his flagging faith recharged by an extraterrestrial deity that imbues him with incredible, if volatile powers. His efforts to do so, aided by an Irish vampire (Joseph Gilgun) and an gun-toting ex-girlfriend (Ruth Negga), form the backbone of this frantic, violent and entertaining series, based on the Vertigo Comics title of the same name and produced by Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg and Sam Caitlin (“Breaking Bad”). The Sony Blu-ray offers a barrage of extras, including deleted scenes and fight and stunt breakdowns.
“Curse of the Man Who Sees UFOs” (2016, Virgil Films) What to make of this curious documentary by first-time director Justin Gaar? At first blush, the subject matter seems ready made to dismiss: Christo Roppolo, former industrial rocker and one-time microbudget horror filmmaker, spends his days documenting what he claims are almost nightly sightings of UFOs hovering over his home town of Pacific Garden and the Monterey Bay area. He’s compiled hours of footage of these mystery objects – distant, indistinct lights that could be anything from helicopter searchlights to camera flares. Roppolo himself- motormouthed, seemingly on the spectrum and apparently unable to view his “brothers from space” without swearing (he puts the curse in “Curse of…”) – seems like irrefutable proof to pass off his claims and videos as crackpot material. But as Gaar notes, there’s something about the footage – the way the lights move in geometric formation, for one – that makes it hard to entirely smirk away. That in turn lends a bit of credence to Roppolo himself, who despite enduring Dickensian emotional abuse by members of his family, possesses an unwavering faith in and connection with the alleged space visitors; by believing in them, it seems, Roppolo is able to believe in himself. By the end of the picture, Gaar (who also provides genial narration) remains unconvinced of Roppolo’s claims, but both he and viewers are more than sure – and quite possibly glad – that they’ve spent time with a very (make that VERY) unique individual. The Virgil Films DVD includes long, unedited segments from Roppolo’s UFO footage; again, there’s nothing that will make a true believer out of anyone, but for the very patient, there are a few moments that might raise an eyebrow.
yeah, today it’s both rainy AND will have the longest night of the year BUT yesterday it was sunny and also my bday so though the sea was a little rough, I paddled my kayak “zaby” in the harbor off of cabrillo beach in my pedro town to celebrate!
a thin line
photo (and poem) by mike watt
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mike watt’s hoot page
What do the son of a man who once talked to God (not to be confused with the Son of God who talked to man), A Young Caine (with no discernable adversarial brothers) and the daughter of a WITCH have in common? They (in the form of Moosie Drier–John Denver’s son in “Oh God!”, Radamas Pera—Young Caine in “Kung Fu,” and Erin Murphy, daughter of Samantha in TV’s original “Bewitched”) were all present at this year’s first annual Black Friday Celebrity Ornament Signing and Decorating bash at the Hollywood Museum! Just a day after Thanksgiving, nostalgia fueled and presently promising personalities both big and bigger crossed the threshold of the marble-floored lobby of the old Max Factor Building. They would then be sent up to the carpeted second floor of the Hollywood Museum amidst the “Child Stars: Then and Now Exhibit” only to be put to work decorating several themed TV show Christmas trees all the while granting interviews to the likes of KTLA and none other than ABC’s George Pennacchio!
Sayyyy…looking for a stocking stuffer this holiday season? Or better yet, a small but significant, (meaningfully ephemeral) trinket from your favorite TV Big Sister with the best TV Mom energy never to be seen on TV?—(yet anyway…) Well, look no further than the latest creation from Kathy Garver herself, aka Cissy of the groundbreaking first all-color sitcom Family Affair to give your holiday that much more flair!!!
Yes, straight from the candy kitchen of Sweet! Hollywood delight in a confection the likes of which I have never tasted in the form the new Cissy candy bar invented by Kathy Garver herself! Rich in the darkest of chocolate, macadamia nuts, Rice Krispies and just a hint of salted caramel decadence—, this chocolate bar is just what the doctor ordered—dentist, psychologist, romantic dietician or otherwise—to chase away your winter blues and garish pre-Holiday hullabaloo! Moreover, Santa Claus only wishes it were on the hutch waiting for him on said big night. But ‘twould only be wasted as it is much too good for any rushed, fat man’s bingefest!!! (Geez!) Continue reading