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The Black Dog inspires creativity -- its high ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows and spacious tables encourage daydreaming, journaling, doodling and other precursors to art making.


Twin Town High (vol. 8)

Your Locally Grown Alternative Newspaper

Hot Tickets for August 10th - August 16th, 2005
Thursday 11 August @ 07:28:23
Hot TicketsAndy Singer...The Black Orchid...Minnesota Bluegrass...Bill Mike Band...Friends with Benefits Release Shows...Pizza Luce Block Party...“Every Mother’s Son”...Scooter Rally...Gogol Bordello...“American Dream”...these event are scorchin' the summer up!!! Check Your Pulse!


August 10 - August 16, 2005

Andy Singer: Transportation Politics
Arise! Bookstore

When it comes to poignant, hard-hitting commentary on U.S. car culture, few hit the mark better than Andy Singer. The local cartoonist and transportation activist has earned national recognition for his single-panel works exploring complex political issues. He has the unique ability to make artwork that is simultaneously funny and frightening, ridiculous and true. In one of his last local appearances before departing for the West Coast, Singer will give a slide presentation on transportation politics. The event will combine Singer’s work with archival footage, analyzing the destruction of early light rail systems and the creation of the modern highway system. He will discuss the problems with car culture, how these problems were created and how to create non-car transportation alternatives for the future. 8:30 p.m. 2441 Lyndale Ave S., in the backyard. Free. 612-871-7110 or Michelle Lee

The Black Orchid: Josephine Baker
Sabathani Community Center

Europe has a rich history of harboring Black American artists. Geniuses like Josephine Baker and James Baldwin couldn’t get arrested here until they went to Europe and became international icons. Judy Cooper Lyle’s “The Black Orchid: Josephine Baker” takes a look at Baker, the immortal song and dance lady who once said, “[The Eiffel Tower] looked very different from the Statue of Liberty, but what did that matter? What was the good of having the statue without the liberty?” Staged in series of vignettes that span the course of Baker’s life, the production is directed by Lyle with musical direction by Twin Cities jazz veteran Morris Wilson (Elaine Klaassen is co-music director) and dance by Florence Lyle. In the cast are Terryann Nash, Madeleine Howie, Mari Harris (as Bessie Smith) and Angela Dalton. Urban Spectrum Theatre Company produces “The Black Orchid: Josephine Baker” at Sabathani Community Center. Aug. 11 – 13, 8:15 p.m. 310 E. 38th St., Mpls. 612-821-2385. Dwight Hobbes


Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival
El Rancho Manaña

Minnesota may be a long way from Tennessee or Kentucky, but that doesn’t mean we lack our fair share of bluegrass enthusiasts. The yearly, four-day Minnesota Bluegrass & Old Time Music Festival draws hundreds of folks to the bucolic setting at Rancho Manaña in Richmond, Minn. (Stearns County). Come for the day or camp on site and enjoy dozens of bands playing bluegrass, old-time string band and related forms of acoustic music. Some of the artists on this year’s bill include the Tim O’Brien Band, Pine Mountain Railroad, Jack Norton and the Mullet Street Boys, New Riverside Ramblers and Pop Wagner. There are also instrument demos, nightly dances, workshops, kids’ activities and more. $10 - $58. Aug. 11 – 14. El Rancho Manaña, Richmond, Minn. (20 miles west of St. Cloud). 800-635-3037 or Nancy Sartor

Bill Mike Band
the Uptown Bar

I usually see William “Mike” Michel at the Urban Bean with his dog, and I still haven’t figured out whether I should call him “Bill” or “Mike.” So usually I just say, “Hey.” When I see him playing guitar, though, usually with Rob Skoro, or perhaps The Few Nice Words, I mostly say, “Wow.” I’ve gotten a peek inside the upcoming full-length Bill Mike Band disc via the track “Secure,” which makes me say, “Damn.” The music’s reminiscent of last year’s “It” prog-rockers The Secret Machines, but whereas that act’s album couldn’t hold up under the weight of repeated listens, Michel’s got a pedigree that warrants attention. He’s always been the man to go to when you want jaw-dropping guitar sounds and textures, plus some shredding, without ruining a good song. And his vocal style (described by the man himself as a “semi-croon”) is ear-catching and generally free of the histrionics that drive people away from similarly complex and rewarding music like the Mars Volta. It’s a little bit prog-y, a little bit Anglo-jangle, and as capable a sideman as he is, I have little doubt that his upcoming disc will make him the household name he richly deserves to be. Soon, he won’t be able to go to the Bean without being mobbed, Beatles-style, by fans screaming, “Bill!” Or possibly “Mike!” 9:30 p.m. $5. 21+. 3018 Hennepin Ave. S., Mpls. 612-823-4719. Steve McPherson


Friends with Benefits Release Shows
Nomad World Pub and Triple Rock Social Club

Just in case you needed more proof that the Twin Cities is blessed with the classiest bunch of melodically inclined cats in the nation, here it is. Hot on the heels of the similarly inclined Missing: Code Blue project comes Friends With Benefits, a compilation of exclusively recorded cuts whose sales will benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The album is the brainchild of Minor7 Studios owner Dave Andersen, whose 8-year-old niece suffers from the disease. CF affects some 30,000 Americans, causing them to produce abnormally thick and sticky mucus that clogs the lungs and leads to severe health problems. Wanting to take action, Andersen asked 16 local bands to record one unreleased song at his studio and in turn covered all aspects of production on this special benefit CD, including costs. Andersen managed to snag both high profile vets (The Owls, The Hang Ups) and exciting newcomers (The Deaths, Heavy Sleeper). Want to get your grubby little hands on this charity driven gem? Head on out to one of two CD release parties this weekend featuring bands on the disc. With the Hang Ups, Mike Gunther and His Restless Souls, the Autumn Leaves and Romantica on Fri., Aug., 12 at the Nomad World Pub. 9 p.m. $5. 21+. 501 Cedar Ave. S., Mpls. 612-338-6424. Second release show featuring The Deaths, Heavy Sleeper, The Idle Hands and Deep Pool on Sat., Aug. 13 at the Triple Rock Social Club. 9 p.m. $6. 21+. 629 Cedar Ave., Mpls. 612-333-7499. Rob van Alstyne

Pizza Luce Block Party
Uptown Pizza Luce

Yeah, sure, there’s a lot of great music happening at the Pizza Luce Block Party, but there’s also a Dunk Tank! Headliner Har Mar Superstar returns for his second outdoor festival in the Twin Cities this summer and the rest of the bill is chock full of a mix of up-and-comers and established favorites, including the indie rock swagger of the Melismatics and 100 Flowers, the spookiness of Ouija Radio and Mike Gunther, and the be-bop chops and hip-hop props of Trad Methods and Heiruspecs. For the first three hours, there’ll be family-friendly activities like face-painting and a moon walk, which I’m pretty sure is one of those big inflatable castle-like things, and not a guest appearance by Michael Jackson. One could debate the family-friendliness of that, I suppose. Plus food food food, including brats and (big surprise) enough pizza to feed an army of scenesters. It’s mid-August, and we’ve begun the slow march back from the depths of summer towards another winter, so you should try and get your outdoor activities in while you can. Featuring Har Mar Superstar, Heiruspecs, The Midnight Evils, Ouija Radio, Die Electric!, Traditional Methods, Melismatics, 100 Flowers and Mike Gunther & Restless Souls. 12 p.m. Free. All Ages. 3200 Lyndale Ave. S., Mpls. 612-827-5978. McPherson

“Every Mother’s Son”
May Day Books

Three very different women—Puerto Rican, West African and Orthodox Jew—have something in common: they are mothers who’s unarmed sons were murdered by New York City police. The 2005 Emmy-nominated film “Every Mother’s Son” tells their stories—the most infamous being that of Amadou Diallo, who was confronted at his home after midnight by four plainclothes cops, guns drawn, who shot him 44 times. The U.S. Department of Justice says that about 350 (many unarmed) people are killed by the police each year. Reports from Amnesty International find more men, women and even children are brutalized. Rarely are criminal charges filed. “Every Mother’s Son” is an unforgettable film. This event is a benefit for Communities Against Police Brutality and its new Judicial Watch Project. 6:30 p.m. meal; 7 p.m. film. $5 - $10. 301 Cedar Ave. S., Mpls. (Basement of Hub Bicycle.) 612-333-4719 or Lydia Howell

Scooter Rally
various locations

Whoever coined the term “joy ride” must’ve owned a scooter and understood the pure, unbridled Zen of buzzing along the open road on this super-fun motor-toy. In fact, the only thing better than toolin’ around on a scooter—wind in your hair; winks, nods and waves from envious drivers stuck in 4-wheeled metal boxes—is crusin’ in a pack! In this, the sixth annual Twin Cities scooter rally, more than 200 participants are expected to roll in for “Scooter Dü 6: Flip Your Wig.” Mods, rockers and general enthusiasts will gather to do what they love best: ride. Locals will be joined by die-hard devotees, who schlep their wheels from as far as Ohio, Denver and Chicago. In addition to group rides throughout the weekend (the semi-raucous, follow-the-leader midnight ride on Friday, and daytime routes both Saturday and Sunday), activities include a meet-and-greet at Elsie’s on Friday, games and a cookout at Scooterville near the U of M on Saturday and a pre-ride breakfast in Northeast at the Square Peg Diner on Sunday. This year the organizers are trying something new: Saturday’s ride will offer an alternative, scenic route through Afton to those with 150cc machines, placating the speed-need of the Stella/Vespa crowd. Even if you don’t own a scooter, come out and enjoy the festivities or simply ogle the creative, pimped-out rides of these two-wheeled hipster-geeks. Fri. – Sun. Various locations. Call Joanne Wald at 763-473-0799 or go to Sartor


Gogol Bordello
the Fine Line Music Café

Gogol Bordello is the kind of World Music mash-up that makes NPR producers drool: a Ukrainian/ Russian/ Israeli Gypsy band by way of Manhattan that makes punk music with accordions and violins. Clinically, they may actually be insane, and I myself was nearly driven insane by them about two years ago when a co-worker at Borders refused to play anything else in the stereo while we were cleaning up after closing. Singer/leader Eugene Hutz (no relation to Simpsons’ mainstay Lionel) has described their sound as “Gypsy punk cabaret,” and who am I to argue? Where most so-called “World Music” is a watered-down mélange of native musics that ends up erasing differences, Hutz and his band of peripatetic minstrels are interested in the clash; they don’t want to make peace among cultures, they want to make noise. Their shows have been known to feature Mongolian throat singers and ballerinas, so you can bet there’ll be some surprises and, if you’ve got a grip on your Eastern European languages, you can even sing along. 7 p.m. $15. 21+. 318 First Ave. N., Mpls. 612-338-8100. McPherson


“American Dream”
MAPPS Coffee & Tea

Twenty years ago saw one of the largest strikes in American history, when Austin, Minn., and other Midwest towns went on strike against the Hormel meatpacking company. Filmmaker Barbara Kopple’s award-winning documentary “American Dream” chronicled the two-year battle that divided a town and inspired workers across the United States. The strike was deeply controversial among union supporters; workers there blamed the national union for not supporting them, while others said the Hormel workers took a misguided risk in striking. At a time when Northwest Airlines workers may strike and the AFL-CIO has split in two, the lessons of the strike are more relevant than ever. Macalester College History Professor Peter Rachleff, former chair of the Twin Cities P-9 Metro Support Committee, will lead a post-film discussion. 7:30 p.m. Free. 1810 Riverside Ave., Mpls. 612-338-6398 Brian Kaller

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