Tuesday, October 11, 2005

10.11.05—Duane’s Poetry, Martha’s Trouble, and Wander Journal

JUDY COLLINS sings John Lennon’s “In My Life” as I write this and reminisce the past. Wonderful, beautiful people and places—make the aftermidnight such a soothing spiritual glass-of-wine to the wearied senses. This Friday, Oct 14, “Bonfires for Peace in Manila” happens in the Philippines—it seemed like ten years ago was just yesterday.

And ten years ago seemed like only a week past—in the mining town of Itogon, far north of Manila, where I spent many summers of my childhood—I built the first bonfire amidst the dark, and read my poems, before three kids, two girls and a boy, whose fathers fought a war that their little, glorious souls will never understand. Their fathers never went home. But those poems and embrace, I know, healed some wounds within. More than anything else, during those moments, the wandering wind gave birth to a boy—who’s named meant “child of the hill” in olde Irish. That boy has grown.

Duane will be watching “Bonfires for Peace in Manila” this Friday. But this is just the start of the story… The bonfire, warmed by the wandering wind, will be back in the mountains in many mountains of many countries and peace will set the spirit free. And fathers will be back home and rejoin the kids—back from the journey, back from the war.

The Updates.

[ ] We have a bit of roster changes or juggling of acts for the Oct 29 “Bonfires for Vampires” concert at Pritchard Park, and the Third World Asheville benefits on Nov 18 and Dec 3 at the Grey Eagle, including in smaller shows in between those gigdates. Meanwhile, we have already executed/accomplished the rental down payment and signed the contract with Grey Eagle’s co-owner/manager, Brian Landrum, last Friday, Oct 7. Before that, we paid a $50 or $75 deposit with The City of Asheville’s Parks&Recreation – right after our last show on Aug 6 – for the 4pm-10pm rent of Pritchard Park (for “Bonfires for Peace”), so that’s ready-to-go, as well.

The Bonfires’ organizational budget (mostly, from recent Indie ad revenue, plus my and Marta’s personal money) is funding all three events. I have previously announced that another individual is co-financing the Grey Eagle events. I however decided to decline the nice gesture and returned the money last week.

The new/final lineup for “Bonfires for Peace at Pritchard Park”/Oct 29 – Peace Jones, Dashvara, Sunshine, with Ash Devine and Aja Hamden & Friends. Remember, this is a Halloween costume park gathering, with gift bags given out to children. Sound (unconfirmed) will be handled by Chris Van Horn. Food to performers, kids, and volunteers c/o Burgermeister, Old Europe, and West End Bakery, Asheville Take Out, plus I think, I still have some food certificates here that were given us by Dale and Loretta Hoffman. Children’s gift bags (pledges and sure ones) c/o Bonnie’s Corner Market/Jonathan Jones, Terra Diva/Helen Miller, and various downtown stores and shops (Malaprops, Something Different, Cookie Designs, Mayfel’s, Vincenzo’s Ristorante—although these three particular pledges are still subject to confirmation). (We nevertheless already prepared more than a dozen gift packages of books, comics, peripherals for children at the park.) (Poster design donated by Justin Gostony.)

As of this writing, we are still contemplating whether we are pursuing an after 10pm (to dawn) Halloween Costume Party. We still don’t have a venue—I prefer a small club, or a place where we don’t have to worry about making sure those ineligible to consume alcohol are kept off the bar. Otherwise, we will have to just stay the night at The Indie Crib, watch some horror movies like “The Exorcist” and any Madonna movie (they do scare me truly), and partake of whatever remains of the donated food and kegs of local brews (Oktoberfest, Pilsner, ESB) purchased on discount from French Broad River Brewery and wine. Beers and wine aren’t free, though, you gotta pay, or Marta The Nicer Osbourne and Mathilde The Extra-Terrestrial Apparition of Woodfin Place will kick you out of The Crib.

FINAL lineup for Nov 18 event at the Grey Eagle – Sunshine, Crooked Routes, Dashvara, Vanessa Boyd, with special guests from San Francisco—Deborah Crooks and Mica Lee Williams. Kapila Ushana emcees this show. CONFIRMED lineup for Dec 3 event at the Grey Eagle (all-women event) – Laura Blackley, Ash Devine, Vanessa Boyd, and special guests Martha’s Trouble (from Canada, who might also perform with Kimberly Summer) and Patty Keough (from Boston). We have extended invites to at least two to three more local women acts/poets/singer-songwriters. (Mississippi Cactus, from Milwaukee, decided to pass up the Dec 3 gig because they are unable to find another gig in WNC/NC on the same weekend.) We will finalize the Dec 3 lineup this week. (Poster designs by Matthew Mulder. If you want to order collectible/framable-versions of the posters, please email Agent Mulder at mulder_matthew@hotmail.com)

Food (for both events) will be provided by the same restaurant-sponsors/donors for the Oct 29 Pritch Park concert, plus Earth Fare (Dec 3), and Mellow Mushroom pledged an every-other-month $100 donation/food certificates to The Bonfires, starting October 29. We might have a mini-art auction/benefit during the Dec 3 event, with donated art from yours truly and Cold River Gallery. WNCW-Radio spot PR fee ($50) shall be donated by another Indie advertiser (I got three pledges).

COMMUNITY CALL: Hello, nice souls of Asheville—The Traveling Bonfires and The Blue Sky God/dess would appreciate it so much if you could provide our wonderful, talented, beautiful friends/visitors from Frisco—Deborah and Mica and Patty K—free accommodation in your houses in the duration of their 3-4 days visit to Asheville this Nov/Dec. Buddy Gino Inocentes, who works at Renaissance Hotel/Baltimore, might offer us cool discounts ($100 for two full days/nights, two beds at any Renaissance/Marriott Hotel).

BRIEF BACKGROUNDER/NOTES about Martha’s Trouble. (Nah, Marta The Nicer Osbourne didn’t form a band to articulate her current troubles, not true)—from
“Rob & Jen Slocumb, better known as the Canadian duo Martha's Trouble, have just released their 5th album entitled Forget October on their own indy label Aisling Records… In September 2004 MT started a national AAA radio campaign in the US which got the record added in rotation to several R&R reporting stations in the country. Through these efforts, Forget October got into heavy rotation on XM Cafe's Nude Music Reviews on XM Satellite Radio. The record went to #3 on the charts and still receives light play… In November 2004, the Just Plain Folk Awards were held at the Galaxy Theatre in Santa Ana, CA. Martha's Trouble was nominated in 7 different categories. Their album Sleeping Dogs won Best Americana Album of the Year that night… A song from their 2002 release, Sleeping Dogs, was used in the CBS made for TV movie, “It Must Be Love,” starring Ted Danson & Mary Steenburgen. The movie aired February 2004. Martha's Trouble plays on average 200 dates a year across the country.”

[ ] My apologies for the over-acted/hyper-excited announcement of Weekly Bonfires Open Mic and Local Acts Showcase at Bearly Edible. I have decided to cancel it due to dire reasons that I couldn’t make public, at this point. Instead, I have emailed/communicated (with) Jarrett Leone (erstwhile emcee of the demised Beanstreets Thursday open mic) that it’s better that two supposed Thurs “open mics” in downtown Asheville, that basically target the same crowd, be merged as one. So guys please attend and savor and participate in the Thursday (7pm to 10pm) open mic at Indigenous Teahouse in Biltmore Av, downtown (near The Orange Peel). I might drop by this Thursday night, but not sure.

[ ] Other gigs—(a) Nov 17, Thurs, 9pm to 1am, Fred’s Speakeasy. The Bonfires Women Singer-Songwriters Night 1, with Deborah Crooks and Mica Lee Williams, and Ash Devine; (b) Nov 19, Sat, 7:00-9:30pm, Malaprops. The Traveling Bonfires presents Deborah Crooks and Mica Lee Williams, with Pasckie Pascua; (c) Dec 1, Thurs, 6:30 to 8:30pm, Malaprops. Patty Keough, and TBA; (d) Dec 2, Fri, 9pm to 1am, Fred’s Speakeasy. The Bonfires Women Singer-Songwriters Night 2, performers (Ash Devine, Aja Hamden) TBA.

We’re supposed to have a guest spot in The Blotter’s poetry reading in Chapel Hill on Oct 19. But, at this juncture, I still don’t have a ride (and enough money) for my previously set Oct 19 to 24th trip up north, all the way to NYC and Atlantic City. So I don’t know yet. I am waiting for the Blue Sky God/dess to give me a signal.

[ ] Questions, queries, clarifications about the post-Harvest Bash event financial situation shall be attended to, on individual/personal requests, pending submission of documentation/financial report/receipts etc from the main organizer. I was advised by The Indie’s lawyer and accountant to hold on to Bonfires records, receipts, letters, event documentation for future tax exemption perusal, among others. As of this writing, we haven’t received any paperwork yet (from the event organizer) although it was promised on Oct 4.

[ ] Siobhan Clarke and Paige Michaels asked me what happened with negotiations with Atlanta’s Big City Burlesque (BCB) and Baraka Mundi (bellydancing troupe). Right now, honestly, we have a deluge of acts/performers to choose from/juggle around—while all these Bonfires “fundraise” shows are all crying, “Hey, we really gotta earn this time!” So I’ve been trying to put feasible/workable marketing concepts/strategies on our upcoming Nov/Dec events—so we could, at least, be able to ensure that we earn beyond ramen noodles money. So I did some juggling in re the Grey Eagle shows—esp. the Dec 3 event. That event will solely be an all-women/fronted concert (as I already mentioned). But I am saving BCB and Baraka Mundi for a sort of New Year/Jan 2006 or late Dec 05 show, or maybe a Valentine’s show. Reservations with major downtown venues normally go from 2 to 3 months in advance (with possible $$$ downpayments) so we are currently negotiating. So there, Paige, your favorite burlesque and bellydancers will still be performing for The Bonfires… Happy?

[ ] Talking about Atlanta, Gaither Stewart, The Indie’s Rome (Italy) contributing writer, has recommended her son Tony Stewart (and his shop) for Indie distribution and Bonfires network in Atlanta and neighboring towns/cities. Of course, we already have a longtime hook-up in Damian Kapcala and Lionz in Athens. Gaither will be in Paris in a few days from now—he might be able to hook The Indie up there, who knows. An Indie displayed in one or two shops in other cities, other countries (outside of Asheville NC) would be cool.

[ ] Believe it or not, each time I get into some kinda emotional setback and financial funk and blues—my creative persistence and stubborn girth turn to maddening overdrive. So we are launching two partner publications starting late fall (mid Nov) or start of winter (Dec). I have already started doing the layout/mark up, and have been doing prelim marketing/advertising hook ups for the first three issues lately. These publications are—
(a)Wander Street, Asheville. (“Open Mag”—otherwise known as a monthly literary journal and/or comics/joke “tabloid.”) No, no, no—I’m not going to do a “demolition derby” thing with Asheville Disclaimer, they’re the BEST paper for intelligent, socially-conscious Ashevellians, anyway, so be it. This is a literary journal—we have many writers groups/workshops in this town, but we don’t really have a regular/monthly publication that devotes to creative writing attempts, outbursts, and pretensions. This also serves as “venue/scrimmage space” for the weekly Wander/Warm Winter Worskhop at The Indie Crib that I plan to start on the first Wed of Nov.
(b)The Indie, Manila and elsewhere. This is the long-overdue/oft-talked about Filipino edition of The Indie. Distribution is exclusively to Filipino communities in the East Coast (New York City, New Jersey, Maryland, Washington DC, Virginia)—the same edition/version comes out in Manila. I will send another copy of the final pageproofs to Manila via ad ex-deal with Filipino couriers in NY/NJ for faster shipment, if electronic transmission doesn’t work (still finetuning that one). So physical printing of the Manila copies happens there. The Filipino/US community and Manila advertising and marketing networking and efforts are merged—hit two targets with one shot, kinda. I have already spent close to 16 months stabilizing my marketing connects in NY/NJ/MD’s Filipino-American communities for this edition. With three Bonfires concerts rocking in Manila (this Oct to Dec), I feel we got the right/timely noise to keep this partner organization going—as we put the Third World Asheville (Asia/US) on overdrive.
Meantime, printing of both publications (Wander/Pinoy Indie) is the same amount as the Iwanna printing budget of The Indie because I am submitting this Project/Job Order as one separate account. For the time being, we are publishing these news “rags” once in two months, until we get some semblance of marketing/advertising vibe. Bulk of the copies of the Pinoy Indie are actually almost already saved to subscribers/addresses. I currently have more than 1500 Filipino snail mail/email addies in my file. (For Wander, I think I have thousands of addresses from all over WNC and the US, so with this mailing list alone, we can get this rockin’ on 12 pages of “open mag.”)

[ ] Congrats to new intern Heather Duncan for hooking up a one-year/quarter-page ad for The Indie. The account is Beauty Parade, based in West Asheville. Heather donated her 15% commission to The Indie/The Bonfires. Thank you, thank you—yes, you can use The Indie’s free pass to Highland Rep plays/shows anytime. New ad prospects (Marta’s accounts, this time)—Something Different (formerly, Almost Blue), Vincenzo’s Ristorante, Café Soleil, Orbit DVD. (I heard that Leslie&Associates is going to donate to The Indie, no kidding.)

[ ] Back to Filipino community hook-ups. I’ve been talking/communicating a lot with Anna Levien (Filipina married to an American), based in New Jersey and the current President of a huge north NJ Filipino-American association. By the away, Anna is a first cousin of Kokoy Severino of the Houston-based multiracial band, Kayumanggi, which was our special “Bonfires for Peace” guest last year. Anna, who’s a friend of another friend (Lizza Nakpil) based in Manila (who’s into band management and stuff), expressed interest in Bonfires concert work, among others. We are currently talking—I strongly feel that this hook up will produce good marketing/networking output for the Pinoy Indie and Pinoy Bonfires.

[ ] BEAUTIFUL, INSPIRING MENTIONABLES. (a) Thanks to Rachelle Arrowood for, among other things (like car use), my endless supply of kimchi, liquid incense, and she has just loaned us her desktop and scanner. She has also done scanning jobs for The Indie in the last two or three issues; (b) Jonathan Jones of Bonnie’s Corner Market told us that an Asheville radio program featured him in an interview, after The Indie ran a profile/story about him and his “convenience store” on this month’s issue; (c) I’m not really sure if I’m just fondling my own ego—but I’ve recently got first-hand/eye-to-eye compliments from various people downtown (UNCA girl at Mellow Mushroom, strangers at Malaprops, police officers, store clerks, and prominent Asheville community leaders and lawyers) about how they enjoy reading The Indie lately; (d) Thanks, Bunk Nesbit (Asheville) and Mariko Shimada (Tokyo), for the nice, warm emails about my Mom—yes, I don’t think I will ever get over the pain of losing my Mother, but I need to make good use of this gift of life that she and God gave me while I’m still here breathing a human existence.

[ ] Upcoming features in the November issue—(a) Mike Hopping’s story about the downtown parking lot contruction; (b) my review of Molly Kummerle and Ruby Slippers’ new CD, plus my interview with Molly; (c) club profile—The Grey Eagle—based on my interview with Brian Landrum, co-owner/manager; (d) student intern Brett Albers’ UNCA/campus-based newsfeature. (NOTE: Vanessa Boyd starts writing for The Indie, hopefully, this Nov issue.)

[ ] As I already mentioned, our Weekly Wander Workshops at Woodfin/Warm Winter Wednesday Whatever starts first weekday (dark:30 till dawn, the 2nd) of Nov. (I don’t know why I’m obsessed with the letter “W” – women, weirdo, witch, wacko, wimp, writer, wreck, wooz, whatever?) It’s not gonna be uptight but I’ll try my best to put system to it. To perk things up, we will have movie screenings/discussion, pick-up open mics, and some food (either you bring your own or you purchase whatever The Crib has) . If you wanna crash, bring your own pillow and blanket, and don’t snore and inhale your smoke.

[ ] Another 70 Woodfin Place co-building tenant, Vickie Currin, who heads a nonprofit called Asheville-Global Environmental, offers to write a project proposal for us. We haven’t sat down yet but I might offer that she writes a proposal instead for our newly-formed women’s organization, Third World Asheville.

[ ] LASTLY—a Public Service. To a certain Ryan Edwards Shields of 172 Michigan Ave., Asheville NC 28806—we found your drivers license laying down the pavement along Lex Av, facing the former Vincent’s Ear courtyard. Those who know Ryan, please let the dude know.

Paige Michaels just emailed me asking me why the hell I haven’t whined yet about “the gruesome fact” that The Indie/The Traveling Bonfires haven’t been mentioned in Mountain Xpress’s recent “Best of WNC.” C’mon, Paige, I already told you, I wouldn’t care, what the hell. But, okay, let me say one thing—what would you say when you drop by a beautiful, mystical mountain city with awesome minds, flawless skies, and colorful hips and realize that their choice for the best newspaper is a joke magazine? Surreal, isn’t it? At least, I am VERY SURE that at this juncture that the only magazine or publication in Asheville that is read and perused, at the same time, in the Blue Ridge Mountains and Appalachians, and at least fifteen houses in Manila and Kuala Lumpur, plus few shops in downtown Manhattan, Baltimore, DC, and Rome and Paris and Dublin is called The Indie. And we don’t even have an online version yet. Three continents, man, on print—no cars, no BS, no Howard Zinn or Dear Abby, and sports page. And I’m not joking, we don’t have to joke about the world that bleeds -- to be number one.
So, as usual, gracias amigos amigas. Love good, live good, sleep good, and EAT good.

Toksa Ake at Mabuhay Kayong Lahat.

7pm. Pack Library.
Asheville NC


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