This was originally posted in April 2014. Tonight, Thursday, the Roxy hosts a free screening of Purple Rain at 9 PM in Prince's honor.
You guys. YOU GUYS. The Roxy is screening Prince's seminal 1984 music film Purple Rain tonight, Thursday, for one night only. As someone who sleeps every night under the watchful, soulful eyes of a Prince and the Revolution poster, I feel strongly that this will be a positive bonding event for our community. Here are six reasons you should go.
1. If you are not acquainted with the majesty and wonder that is contained in all 5'2" of Prince, this is a pretty good place to start. In a storied career, Purple Rain (the album) is Prince at the height of his weird, fabulous rock-sexuality.
2. You get to see Apollonia's boobs in it. (Prince
never even takes his shirt off, even in sex scenes oops he does in the "Darling Nikki" concert scene, totes forgot.)
3. Where else are you gonna see a film about the edgy, thriving rock scene of Minneapolis?
4. The plot is mind-bogglingly melodramatic and silly, fitting from someone who sings in falsetto about "touch, if you will, my stomach, feel how it trembles inside." There's some very eyebrow-raising drama involving Prince's fictional parents (though he's said in real life his parents were sober and supportive jazz musicians.) You will question the sanity of everyone involved in the film and, possibly, your own.
5. Okay, the plot is atrocious, but the music sequences are stellar. They will bring you back to a time when people played pointy guitars and wore open-throated, puffy white shirts. A time when rock music was about hair and performance art and creating a stage show and men wearing high heels. As someone who wasn't even a zygote in 1984, all I can say is that I feel like I really missed out.
6. And hey, 30 years later, the Purple One is still weirdly cool and inscrutably weird. He had a pancakes and pajama party just last year at his house, where he played a 90-minute set at 4 AM. Talk about commitment.
Every year the Montana Skatepark Association put on the On Deck art show and auction, which provides a vivid collection of paintings and sculpture made from skateboard decks. In its 9th year, the exhibit at the Brink Gallery offers funny and beautiful images including ones of rollergirls, cow skulls, comix, landscapes and abstracts.
If that's not enticing enough, there is a nude of Burt Reynolds.
The online auction is happening now at montanaskatepark.org/ondeck and continues through Thursday, May 1, at 5 PM.
After the Thursday online auction, bidders will be notified and proxy bidders can be arranged for the gallery auction on May 2nd. The First Friday May 2 reception runs from 5 to 10 PM. All the decks (including some surprises) will be available for viewing and bidding.
Paul McCartney, who may or may not be your favorite Beatle, is coming to Missoula for his Out There tour and tickets go on sale Friday, May 9. The tour launched last year in Brazil and has pretty much gone around the world from South America to Japan through Europe and North America. The 2014 leg will see him hit Washington-Grizzly Stadium on August 5. Apparently his shows have been full-bore, three-hour long mixes of old Beatles tunes, stuff from Wings and newer works. This is McCartney's first show in Missoula and, of course, who knows if he'll ever make it here again.
From the press release: “I first heard of Paul McCartney when I was in the fifth grade watching the Ed Sullivan show. What an honor to have this legend perform in Washington-Grizzly Stadium,” says University of Montana President Royce Engstrom. “It will be the entertainment event of a lifetime! I am proud of our team that worked to make this happen at UM.”
Tickets go on sale Friday, May 9 at 10 a.m. at all Griz Tix locations, by phone at 1-888-MONTANA, and online at www.griztix.com. Prices range from $69.50 to $250.
Tim Goessman has been taking photographs of Missoula DIY musicians and artists since 2011, including at raucous house shows in the now-defunct Lab, in the back of the VFW and out on the streets. Check out some of the favorites he posted on his website showcasing bands like King Elephant, Whoopass Girls and Bird's Mile Home, as well as informal jam sessions such as the one of Brandon Neumayer and Taylor Toth-Joseph, below, taken in May 2013 in an alley across from the Green Hanger.
Last night, T-Pain made an unexpected appearance at a downtown music venue. As it turns out, his big show at the Wilma was canceled last minute due to low ticket sales, so he and his entourage went around the corner to kick it with Steel Pulse at the Top Hat.
Local band Muzikata opened the show at 9 p.m and band member Dan Bay recalls seeing a group of men with chains around their necks walking in the door just as he and his bandmates were setting up to play.
“They were asking our guitarist about something,” Bay says. “And then they’re like, ‘This is T-Pain.’ Our guitarist said, ‘Yeah, right! Where’s your AutoTune?’ They thought it was so funny, they started hooting and hollering. And it turns out it really was him.”
The show was packed to gills, and according to Bay, T-Pain stayed by the stage for Muzikata’s entire set, grooving along to the reggae tunes. “He was so nice and gracious,” Bay says. “He stood in the front during the show and bobbed his head along to the music.”
During Steel Pulse’s set, T- Pain hopped up on stage and did an impromptu song, "Put Your Hoodies On," with the reggae legends.
The Wilma is refunding tickets to all those who had plans to see T-Pain at the Wilma.
It’s always a drag when a show gets canceled, but at least some people ended up with a little T-Pain love.
“Broke up with my girl last night so I went to the club (so I went to the club)
Put on a fresh white suit and a MiniCoop sitting on dubs (sitting on dubs)
I'm just looking for somebody to talk to and show me some love (show me some love)
If you know what I mean... Uh-Huh...”
I found this video here from last night's show.
I really did like the Breeders back in the day, but truth be told I was so addicted to the song “Cannonball” that I can’t remember much else about the band or any other track on the 1993 album Last Splash. That’s probably not the Breeders’ fault so much as the consequence of a really good ear worm.
In the case of Bleeding Rainbow, a Philadelphia band whose sound carries the torch for 1990s “alt-rock,” you don’t really have to be so one-track minded. I’ve listened to Interrupt, released a couple of months ago, dozens of times and the whole thing gets stuck in my head. Besides the Breeders it reminds me a little bit of a shoe-gaze version of the Soviettes. Maybe no one particular song will climb to iconic “Cannonball” status, but it’s a collection that works really well as an entire listening experience. In the rain. On the highway. Walking through the park on a sunny afternoon.
Tonight, the guys of Weird Missoula present Bleeding Rainbow, who shares the stage with locals Vera and Magpies, bands that both deal in riffage that hearkens back to that good old 1990s rock distortion that made Sonic Youth, the Pixies et al so delicious. Though perhaps of the same species, these bands each have their own style. It’s bound to be a wonderfully shiny, minor-key chord-infused, rock and roll night.
Weird Missoula present Bleeding Rainbow at the VFW along with Vera and Magpies tonight, Wed., April 23, at 10 PM. $5.
It’s been a decade since Brian Blanchfield’s last book, Not Even Then, but his newest collection, A Several World, feels like a long-awaited poetic grail. The poet, essayist and former University of Montana poetry professor has a remarkable talent for connecting language and ideas in mercurial ways. With signature verve and an impeccable ear, Blanchfield’s newest lyrics are just as daring and robust as before, but with greater sensitivity and reach. One other big difference: Not Even Then was a city poet’s book, while A Several World is a book of playfully sculpted eclogues and town-and-country ruminations tethered to a more tactile world. It’s a book of pastoral poems. We can start there.
An eclogue is, traditionally, a poem in which two shepherds converse. Although only four poems in A Several World are eclogues by name, all of the poems in the book seem to encounter or reveal a shepherd of some kind (or several): each idea, figure or allegory is shepherded by something else. Blanchfield’s poetry plays with a flirtatious call-and-response between subject and object, an erotic come again between lover and beloved, and a constant, elaborate sensing between landscape and inhabitant. These poems bob, dart and skid on the surface of this provisional tension between whatever’s underway and whoever’s expressing it. The relationship between the pair is propositional, and proposition is playful. In the beginning of “Pterytium,” for example, he proposes a cheeky postcard view of rural conditions and outlook:
“Hallmark meteorology: a little what-if weather/ sworn over time to the ridgeline conditions/ the basiners downvalley to the lucky look/ of trouble. In an updraft apprehension/ replenishes the cloud, a steady sort of borrowing/ against promise. Welling at bottom, a slow spring fills/ centrally where it plummets, a sump and font that fills/ convexity out to its inky meniscus...”
Whichever subject each poem takes on—ducks enraptured by a goose, modernist Italian art in down-home Charlotte, chat-dating websites, Reformation-theologians Calvin and Luther as lovers, teenagers getting stoned in Missoula—they offer lavish studies of language overheard in everyday life.
The third section of A Several World, “The History of Ideas,” departs from the rest of the book, like a sort of outpost or mini-collection within the larger framework. This section contains some of the most acrobatic poems, and is Blanchfield at his most versed and virtuosic, ironic and bedeviling. The other three sections are composed mostly of the sorts of pastoral eclogues that make the collection the ambulatory and conversational book it is. These are poems chiefly about place and situation, excited by encounter and incident. “No place is dangerous” as Blanchfield notes in “Edge of Water, Nimrod Falls, Montana,” because, “The situation arrives/ as we do.” They are poems that dip into the pastoral’s long history of eroticism (particularly homosexual eroticism) with theatrical invention and an attentiveness to the natural world. In “The Inversion,” a poem reeking of Missoula, Blanchfield invents a suspenseful situation in a familiar natural landscape:
Through the truckstop fudge of mascara,
threat or ecstasy having subsided, through
either diner window, time
to decide, while he’s in the men’s,
the dead, tall tangle of mallow in cheat grass
and common tansy
barely stirs in the opposite lot,
and beyond, farther still from the overpass
the steers like gurus
move despair around.
This enchanting mix of naturalism and muscular musicality—his alliteration and well-crafted asides—brings to life a landscape in which several realities coexist. In the last poem of the book, “Edge of Water, Moiese, Montana,” the lived and the created not only overlap but multiply: “…Rake your face cheek to jaw/ with broken mica, and the moth traffic/ triples at your back. Is that a fact?”
In Brian Blanchfield’s world it is.
Brian Blanchfield reads from A Several World at Shakespeare & Co. tonight, Wed. April 16, at 7 PM along with Alice Bolin who reads from her book Motel Diary. Free.