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DUB FEST

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Rock and Reggae

HOT SPOT of the Month RJ’s Replays

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Much More! Issue 07

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BSceneLive’s Photo of the Month

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odi B. is a native New Yorker who loves the people and the warm, sunny climate of Tucson. She  celebrates all genres of music and appreciates the varied, friendly arts scene in the Old Pueblo. She loves downtown and 4th Avenue. Brooklyn Pizza and Sky Bar. She’s really glad to be here! Jodi B. studied art, enjoys writing and loves  photography, especially photos of people. Her goal is photo portraits that capture your unique  attractiveness... she  wants to make YOU look good.

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Jodi B. Darling


Publisher - Gregg Ziekert

Art Director - Rainbow Buckingham finance & legal - Rik Hoeflinger Editor - Carolyn “Trouble” Cary Media relations - Stacy Fortson Account Representative - James Ford Jr. Graphic Artist - Katita Buckingham

Ben Michaels....................... 3-4 Pitball Records................ 5-6 A Fall to Break: CD REVIEW..... 7 DUBFEST..................................... 9 YOU were SCENE Photos.... 11-12 HEATHER HARDY............... 13-14 Kini Wadè............................. 17 University PEDI-CAB................. 18 Basketball & Bare Feet............. 19 BSL HOT SPOT: RJ’s Replays....... 21

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The views and opinions expressed on this web site or in print are solely those of the original authors and other contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Gregg Ziekert, the BSceneLive staff, and/or any/ all contributors or advertisers.

Writers: Benjamin Bean Rolling Cait Reynolds Debbie Federico Don Martin Gregg Ziekert John Mares Katita Buckingham Mel Macabre Moss Orion Stephanie Swingle. Tre James Osborne

Photographers: Benjamin Bean Rolling Jeanni Nunn Jodi B. Darling Rose Price Stacy Fortson Frank Ramos

U nder the direction and G uidance of

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Ben Michaels By: Debbie Federico Photos by: Stacy Fortson

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en Michaels is a man who has been humbled by life and by the mistakes he made in his. He has overcome alcoholism, his ego of playing for the girls, the money and the desire for fame, to get to a place of serenity and to play music that people pay attention to and believe in.

For him, music is the best way he knows to express himself. It allows him to connect, to find his center in his spirituality. After a bout with drinking and taking a look down that long dark tunnel that led to nowhere, he had to get sober to save himself. “I have to live my life in hand with my spirituality.” His biggest obstacle he claims “is my own head. Thinking too much has gotten me into trouble in the past. I got to stay grounded here. I picked a place on the map to move to and it was Tucson, the polar opposite of Clemmons, North Carolina. Tucson is exactly where I am supposed to be right now.” Showing the Buddhist within, he says, “Things will turn out the way they should.”

Onstage, behind his guitar, barefoot because it’s comfortable, he exudes a life force that lights up his face and aura. Sometimes shouting his lyrics into the microphone because he wants the audience to feel what he feels. He does not try to be entertaining, he just is. Joking One would think, after watching, hearing and talking to with the crowd, doing Lil Jon impressions and proclaiming Ben, that he is a veteran of the stage, but he has only “I’ve got sweat on my guitar. been playing professionally I’m rocking!” “If I can just help other people the since earlier this year. His way I was helped through music then impact is already sizeable, Ben is young, at 19 years old I can be happy.” ~ Ben Michaels earning him fans at every he has already experienced venue. Most of those fans life’s potholes, mostly by his have asked for a CD, and he is working on one. He plans own doing. Unlike most young adults, he has discovered to give those CDs out for free at his shows, because of a secret that grounds him. He spoke to me about the the person he is. “This is life,” he says. “What would be spirituality he had to find in order to overcome his inner demons. He accepts and reads Buddhist and Hindu a better way to talk to people about life? Why would I teachings, and cites Eckhart Tolle’s “The Power of Now” want to listen to that? I want to give back and music is as an aid in squashing the ego within. He finds those the way to do that.” messages best convey to him how he can be grounded. “Everyone is Southern Baptist back home,” he tells me, “If I can just help other people the way I was helped “and I revolted against “God”. But I found it within myself. through music, then I can be happy,” Ben says. He That’s what Buddhist teachings did for me. All religion doesn’t have to have fame, just enough money to get by. has the same message if you think about it.” (I agree with Mentoring others would be a great accomplishment for him.) “And the best songs come when I’m connected to him. The way he says his idol, Trevor Hall, did for him. my spirituality.” Going through the hardest time in his life he listened to Hall’s music, and it got him through it. He wants to be able to do that for others.

Ben may just do that with his song “Life Up High”. It is song written after the memorial that was held for the victims of the January 8th shootings that killed 6 people and injured 13, including Representative Gabrielle Gifford’s, here in Tucson. “I was actually angry, that it took such a tragedy to cause people to come together. But then I went and wrote the song in about 5 minutes.” I believe that once 3

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520.358.2137 that song gets radio airplay it will become Ben’s signature song, rocketing him onto the radar. His other songs are infectious and powerful. He really does find a way to bond with his audience. His song “Breeze” had no finished second verse, and he told the audience that, but played it anyways, cueing Kevin Pierre Tomanovich on the drum, whooping and grinning in approval. Ben has the energy of Michael Franti, that happiness in his songs that you can groove to. He cites Trevor Hall, Dave Matthews, Radiohead and Matthew Santos as his influences. The Dave Matthews Band’s last album, “Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King” is currently in his rotation.

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he is that guy you can open up to and be yourself with because he is himself. Behind the shy smile, once you get past the fidgeting, you find one of the most calm, open, accepting people to grace your path. The colors that surround him are the deepest imaginable. He could rule the world if he wanted to, but chooses instead to use his talent to connect and be connected to all those around him. The happiest we can hope to be in our lives is when living becomes effortless. But does it make it interesting? Ben thrives on that, he wants the simplicity but also wants to make things happen. Ben’s moment is now, and as humble as he is, he would say he is getting there. I am here to attest that as such a powerful energy, when he feels he is there, to that place, he will bring the rest of us with him.

You get the sense that Ben has worked hard at tethering himself. Now he is in the state of being, however he will say he is always working on it. He talked about how music was a way to get connected. Playing at the Hotel Congress and opening for his idol was one of the biggest moments of inspiration for him. “I’m talking about what Trevor means to me and people were calling my name,” he says. “There was a hundred and forty people I didn’t know, there to see Trevor, but they liked me.” He smiles, “There is ego involved in that, but instead I want to be able to relate to people in that way.” He had grabbed a press flyer, and I kept it for safety while he played. When I gave it back to him after the show, he went up like any other fan to Trevor. “I had to have him sign it. My picture is on there with his,” he said with a big smile.” I could have talked to Ben for hours about music and life and spirituality. I told him about my synesthesia, something I don’t talk to many about, and realized that Issue #07

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Spin a CD with

P

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PitbAll records

By: Don Martin © Oliver Saul, PitBall Records

itBall Records is a full-service CD production company for the aspiring (or established) artist. They will handle production, recording, CD duplication, CD printing, graphic design, management, and press relations. Oliver Saul, owner of PitBall, says his goal is to “Help a band create an EP or album, and to take the next steps to get that music out to the rest of the planet!” Ensphere, Animus Divine, and Solace in Nothing are some of the bands he is working with now. Solace In Nothing’s six-song EP “Demons ” is the latest release from PitBall Records. This release was produced by PitBall, recorded at Next Door Studios, and was mastered by TAMMIE award winner Fen Ikner. Oliver talks about releasing the most recent PitBall EP. “I meet Solace in Nothing in November of 2010, when they played for one of my metal compilation shows at Pearl. I quickly became a fan of their music and stage performances, and about two months after that show I approached the band and asked if they would like to be a PitBall recording artist. They said yes, and came into my studio in the beginning of 2011 to begin recording their EP. After about four months of tracking and mixing we had the tracks ready for mastering.” Oliver adds, “I was amazed by the Drummer Mark Chico, he was able to get the tracking for all the songs in two days. For a 17 year old to have such talent blew me away. Michael Chico, brother of Mark, had an incredible guitar sound, which came out in the finished production. Neko Sam, bass player for the band, was very easy to work with and his tracking was very quick. Neko’s stage performance is a sight to be seen, he is a professional head banger for sure. Macos Rosas, the vocalist for the band, has a strong vision for the songs, which he writes the lyrics for. His graveyard growls and strong voice allowed me to create some vintage vocal tracks.” The Solace in Nothing EP demonstrates PitBall can indeed take a CD from being only an idea in the mind of an artist, through recording, production, and release. Oliver says about the new release, “I would have to say that the time in the studio allowed me to get to know the band. They showed a great desire to perfect each and every song.“ He describes the PitBball team effort: “PitBall Records graphic artist Dan Agnew developed the EP art concept and worked with the band to find the perfect layout for this up and coming EP. Marty Haviik was the photographer for many of the band pictures that are in the EP package. Gary Ranstead designed the EP cover art.” The EP was recorded and produced by Oliver at Next Door Studios. PitBall Records along with Big Mike Productions will be releasing the EP Demons will be released

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on October 28, 2011 at the Rialto. Oliver says, “This EP release show will be filled with top notch bands: Stands with Fists, Ensphere, A Fall to Break, Indu, and Trinity. PitBall Records was very happy to have been able to produce this EP for the band and we look forward to starting on the full length CD in the beginning of 2012.�

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“Man in the Mask” A Fall to Break CD Review By: Debbie Federico

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f A Fall To Break’s last CD, “September Falls” was any indication of where this band was heading, “Man in the Mask” has announced it. The title song showcases Nathan Shoemaker’s vocal strength, and the first two tracks have a driving power provided by Matt Bejar on the drums. The whole album is driven by the crescendos of Craig Artz’s guitars and the rapid fire dribbling repeats of Matt Bejar, with the piece de resistance being Cody G’s guitar solos. There is a melancholy warble to Nathan’s voice as he belts out lyrics like “it holds like it understands my needs/it keeps me from moving forward/it’s times like these that I feel so weak/ and time to try and start this over/ leave it be in the past where it all still belongs/ see the man in the mask grows tired of all these questions/ there’s no threat/ the less that you know/the less you must forget, except you don’t” from the third track “Man in the Mask”. This gravity was first heard on “September Falls” title track, a song based on the September 11th attacks and the anniversary of them. The band has seemed

to temper “Man in the Mask” with that same melancholia. They bring it home with a surprise slow ballad, a piano-driven highlight number titled “I’ve Died”. Not to discount the utter extreme rock that is blaring from my stereo. It is loud in all the right places, with chord progressions running up and down each track and some seriously hardhitting drums. Oh, there will be moshpits. I found myself singing along after the second listen through, realizing that this is a band that needs some serious radio airplay. Though there’s not quite a band that sounds like them, or they sound similar to, they’d fit nicely between the likes of Rise Against and Bullet for My Valentine on KFMA. In my opinion, they are better than most of what is played on the radio currently. Released by XENOCIDE STUDIOS, they recorded and mastered the album themselves. Proudly proclaiming they are 100% selfproduced, they sound much more professional than most others out there. There is no overproduction here, just good, natural, talent. They are releasing their CD at The Rock on Saturday, September 24th with CCS Crew (who are also releasing a CD). You can pick up the CD for $10. Having had a chance to see them live, I can say that theirs is a live show not to be missed. For more information check out their Facebook page (and like them) at: https://www.facebook. com/afalltobreak And watch their music video “Man in the Mask”, directed by Tucson’s Peter Leon (who will also be at the show doing a live video shoot): http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=S2aJJxgZ7t8

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DUBFEST Featuring Ballyhoo and Pacific Dub By: Stacy Fortson

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hat is Dub? Dub is commonly considered a subgenre of music that emerged from Reggae music in the late 1960’s, progressing over the years to impact other genres of music, including post-punk and rock. Dub involves removing some, or all, of the lyrics to a song and putting the emphasis on the drum track and bass. To those who grew up in Southern California, Dub may possibly mean those 20 inch rims or a $20 sack of high grade marijuana. For this occasion, Dub is all about the influence that the music has on all of us.

Dub Fest is double the pleasure, two nights of Reggae, Rock, Alternative, Hip-Hop, Blues, Funk and Ska. This extraordinary combination of music sure to please us all is coming to the Hut in Tucson on Friday October 14th and Saturday October 15th, 2011. Inspired by Southern California style music and beach living lifestyle, both nights will feature an incredible mix of local and national acts. Friday night headliners Ballyhoo, from Aberdeen, MD, are undeniably turning the world of music upside down and sideways as they blur the lines between rock, reggae, punk and pop to craft their own hybrid of music. Playing Friday night with Ballyhoo is Echo Movement, a seven piece band from Asbury, NJ. Echo Movement is an American alternative/reggae band originally formed in 2004 by brothers Stephen and David Fowler. Saturday night features Pacific Dub from Huntington Beach, CA. Pacific Dub is one of the newest, and youngest, bands to solidify themselves as professionals within the Reggae-Rock scene. Pacific Dub combines catchy choruses, heavy rock n’ roll guitar melodies, and smooth hip-hop and reggae rhythms that add to their coastal vibe while sharing a message of love and peace. Also featured Saturday night is Katastro, from Tempe, AZ. Formed in 2007, Katastro emerged from diverse musical backgrounds to create a unique sound, blending hip-hop, blues, jazz and rock. DUB Fest Night 1 Lineup: Special Brownie (Tucson, AZ), Catfish Mustache (Mesa, AZ), Faster Than Light (Tucson, AZ), Spartacus (Oxnard, CA), Ease Up (L.A./ San Diego, CA), Echo Movement (Asbury Park, NJ), Skitn (Tucson, AZ), and Ballyhoo (Aberdeen, MD). 9

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DUB Fest Night 2 Lineup: Funky Bonz (Tucson, AZ), Faster Than Light (Tucson, AZ), Spartacus (Oxnard, CA), Katastro (Tempe, AZ), Pacific Dub (Huntington Beach, CA). Come join us at Dub Fest for an impressive two nights of amazing live music performed by our favorite local and national acts. Purchase your tickets at http://dubfest. eventbrite.com/, $10 for one night or $15 for both nights. Sponsored by Tucson Rock Alliance, Phenomenon Concerts, and BSceneLive. Vendors will also be on hand from Moon Smoke Shop and 420org.


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Just Who Is Heather Hardy? By: Don Martin Photos by: Jodi B. Darling

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he once played a secret concert in communist East Germany before the Berlin Wall fell and is in the Blues Hall of Fame. In her younger years she played in the NYC subway for tips and has toured Europe several times. She was trained as a classical symphony pianist and violinist at the prestigious Manhattan School of Music, but now plays blues and jazz. She has worked with the likes of Allen Ginsberg and the legendary Sam “Bluzman” Taylor. She won the 2011 TAMMIE for best string musician in Tucson. Many musicians would kill for a shot at some of those things. So who is this interesting person? She is Heather Hardy, and she lives and performs right here in Tucson! Reading Heather’s bio it seems to be a chronology of taking musical risks. Playing in a communist country during the cold war was certainly a risk. Switching from a classically trained symphony musician to a jazz/ blues artist is a risk. Playing with some of the “best of the best” in the music world is a risk. The list goes on… So let’s briefly hit the highlights first. She has been playing live music in Tucson since 1991. She calls her music soul/ blues. She says she plays “lots” of clubs and bars as well as festivals. A little unusual, she also plays prisons and rehab centers. She says she does this because “I love to bring music into settings that have none. I believe there should always be some kind of music in our environment.” Heather was born in New Rochelle, NY, but her family quickly moved to Westport, CT. Her father was a medical illustrator, and her mother a teacher. The family had a great appreciation for the musical arts, and at age six Heather took up the piano. She says she immediately fell in love with it, but there was more, she fell in love with creating and performing music. In 4th grade, the school she attended offered every student

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the opportunity to study a string instrument. Heather really wanted to play the cello, but it was too heavy for a small girl to carry around. Her family convinced her to study the violin. She says she absolutely fell in love with it, and with the idea of playing in a symphony setting. She was selected for the All-State Orchestra and the Norwalk Youth Symphony and played with them during Jr. High and High School. In High School she had the honor to be selected for the American Youth Symphony and did her first European tour with them. After High School she applied to the Manhattan School of Music. She auditioned on both piano and violin, and was accepted on both but was told she had to pick one as her major. At first it was the piano, and she studied under Walter Hautzig for a year. She did some soul-searching and realized a piano was fine for a symphony, but it wasn’t exactly portable. Heather says she is a gypsy at heart, and needed something she could easily carry. She decided a violin was something you could play with the symphony, as well as for informal small groups on the road. She switched her major to violin, and studied for another two years under Raphael Bronstein, who she calls “incredible.” After the MSM she started playing the subways and local parks, mostly for tips. She says this was a great opportunity to meet other musicians, learn from them, and develop her style. By this time she had switched from classical music to blues/jazz. One day, playing in Washington Square Park, she got “noticed.” She was asked to join the False Prophets who recorded on the Alternative Tentacles label. They were fairly well known, especially in Europe. She joined them, and they toured Europe, Canada, and the US. Heather talks a bit about the transition from a symphonytrained violinist/pianist to a blues/jazz performer. “I changed direction musically, in 1984. I really always loved jazz and blues and I wanted to be able to improvise. But that transition for a classical violinist is very difficult. For me it was a lot about loosening up and letting go, and allowing


520.358.2137 the music to come through me rather than from me.” She continues, “I feel as though the violin is an extension of myself at this point, I don’t look at it as something I like for better or worse. It’s like breathing.” As for her singing, she credits Sam Taylor. “Singing was a gift given to me by the late great Sam Taylor. I had always enjoyed singing, but I never even entertained the thought of being a lead singer. I worked with Sam for 20 years. And from learning to sing harmonies next to him he endlessly encouraged me to find my voice. I love it and am so grateful he encouraged me. I am still always striving to improve.” Heather continues, “This leads me to the question of who influenced me most. Well, without a doubt that would be Sam Taylor. First of all, there was no artist before, during, or after Sam’s life that rivaled what he did. And when you went to see Sam, or played with Sam, you were in the Church of the Blues. Such a great band leader, such an incredible showman, and his voice and guitar playing moved me to chills and tears nightly. “I also feel that being in the presence of such a great songwriter and truly getting to see his artistic process opened my mind and heart to the possibilities of what I could do as a writer and performer. He was also my very best friend and on so many levels he made me a better artist and human being.” I always like to ask musicians about the largest and smallest crowds they have played to. I am interested in the answer to the small crowd question, you can learn some things there. Are they only in it for money (large crowd) or because they enjoy interacting with their audience (small crowd)? Heather nailed this one perfectly. For the record, the largest crowd she has played to is “well over 5000” at a concert in Poland, with the False Prophets on a European tour. The smallest was only a few people at the Mint, here in Tucson. About this she says, “But it’s one of

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my favorite gigs. If it’s only a small crowd, but they love music, then it’s everything I need. And most of the time we have a great group that comes to hear the music and a great group of regulars and staff that also love music. I love playing there!” As a fan of live music that’s exactly what I want to hear! What does Heather get out of playing live? She puts it this way. “When I play a show, I always receive a great healing. Of course, the act of playing creates that. And the experience of collaborating with other artists (my band) is empowering. But at the shows the greatest power to me is in seeing the audience and feeling them have a cathartic experience. Whether they need to escape, or whether they find comfort, or just dance their cares away, it is contagious and I always feel that I receive way more than I could ever give. Those moments of creating community give my life purpose.” Heather is passionate about supporting the Amity Foundation. Amity is a nonprofit which helps people with substance abuse problems. Their latest project is Dragonfly Village, which will include a complete resource center for children in families having problems with substance abuse issues. Heather’s website is www.heatherlilmamahardy.com. There you can keep up to date on her tour schedule, see some live video, or download music. The musicians Heather currently plays with are: Ed Delucia (guitar), Larry Lee Lerma (bass), Ralph Gilmore (drums), Sabra Faulk (vocals), and Don Nottingham (vocals). Heather’s previous CD’s are titled: “Violins” and “I Believe.” Issue #07

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It’s Pronounced WAH-DEH!

By: John Mares Photos by: Benjamin Rolling

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met Kini Wadè when I walked into Plush on 4th Avenue. I spotted the bartender and asked if he was Kini Wade (pronouncing his last name way-ed). He quickly corrected me on the pronunciation of his last name as “Wah-deh” and told me it should be spelled with an accent mark,” Wadè.” Kini Wadè is well known for playing drums in various local Tucson bands. He is the original founder of Tammie Hall of Fame reggae band, Neon Prophet. He formed the band back in 1984, but left shortly afterward to take care of family responsibilities. He has played for The Stella’s, Black Moon Graffiti, Pro-Cell, The Low Downs, Manzanita, Tin Roof, Wadè Connection, Moore Rockers, and has been drumming for reggae band Planet Jam since September 2007. I was fortunate to sit down with Kini and hear interesting stories of his life’s journeys and travels. Kini described himself as an “old hippie” from Meadville, PA. He told me attended the original Woodstock in 1969, validating his claim as a hippie to me. I continued to take notes as he unloaded more interesting tales. Kini is very much an iconic figure on 4th Avenue. Not only does he bartend at Plush and Delectable’s, he also works part time at the Chocolate Iguana and is the 4th Avenue Association’s Street Fair Stage Manager. Kini is the man responsible for booking all of the live entertainment at all the 4th Avenue Street Fair’s since 1996. I asked Kini how he landed the job with the 4th Avenue Association and he replied, “The people in charge at the time noticed I had a decent sound system and professional equipment for live shows.” I was very interested on his thoughts of Tucson’s music scene and if he

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thought things have progressed and evolved in a positive way for local musicians. He believes that Tucson has had a huge growth in population since he arrived in 1977, and that has created more diversity and new talent to be discovered in our community. He has seen many talented young artists come to Tucson to attend the University of Arizona and form new progressive bands. He believes the younger bands will keep the music scene vibrant and fresh. Kini did mention that the City of Tucson neglected to build an outdoor amphitheater downtown or on 4th Avenue somewhere. He would’ve liked to have a permanent stage for bands to play during 2nd Saturday’s downtown or other events on 4th Avenue. I asked him if he enjoys the Club Crawl events on 4th Avenue and Kini replied, “Many bars have closed their doors to bands during club crawl. It has turned into more of an outdoor type of festival than a club festival. Club Crawl started out as just that…people going from club to club to see various bands perform. Now it’s more outdoor crawling than clubs.” If you ever get a chance to see Planet Jam play, stop over and say hello to Kini Wadè. And remember to pronounce his last name with an accent “Wah-deh!” He will correct you on that…trust me.


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I met Brent years ago in the downtown scene of Tucson. Brent is a jack of all trades, but is probably best known as the front man of Tucson’s own BRICKTOP. The band BRICKTOP is a staple in Tucson’s punk scene, and Brent is a well known guy. For eight years, Brent worked at the Vaudeville Cabaret on Congress. He and some guys from disbanded bands got together and formed BRICKTOP. However, he started tattooing long before Vaudeville and niversity Pedi-Cabs was established by Tony BRICKTOP. In 1997/98 Brent was living in Utah and did a Rivera in 2011. Born in Manhattan, New York, tattoo apprenticeship at Boulevard Tattoo. When he came Tony moved to Tucson in his mid 20’s after back to Tucson in 1999, he went to work at Tattoo Artistry careers in aircraft maintenance with the US Air Force with Ed Slocum. In 2000, Brent met Jim, the owner of and as a BMX racer. Tony attended Pima Community Fastlane Tattoos. Brent and Jim started a couple things College, studying Fitness Sport Science, then continued together, they ride choppers together with some of the his education at the U of A, getting a degree in Elementary other artists in Jim’s shops, and maintained a friendship for Education. A love of the great outdoors, combined with a the past eleven years. Brent was working as a mechanic love for fitness and exercise, led Tony to form University when Jim approached him with an offer to go back to Pedi-Cabs. He hopes to share his love of all three with tattooing at Fastlane. Brent accepted, and we are now the people who use the service. Tony draws inspiration blessed with another talented artist here in Tucson. There from Walt Disney, who would not give up until he made are two Fastlane shops now, one at 22nd St. and Wilmot, his dream come to life. and the other on Oracle Rd. just north of Prince. Brent started out atPedi-Cabs the east side shop inthe August of 2010, and is University provides University of Arizona now working at the west side shop on Oracle. The shop is and downtown Tucson areas with a unique, alternative, neat, clean, organized, and has a chillUniversity vibe to it.Pedi-Cabs The new eco-friendly form of transportation. shop on Oracle also has a space in the back that is going to also conducts tours of the El Presidio historic district, 4th beAvenue, used as University a retail space. Jim andand Brentthe want to sell local of Arizona, romantic River music and merchandise, and rare and hard to find punk Walk, as well as participating in various community records and merchandise. The space is awesome and I functions and events. can’t wait to see it set up. Of course, BRICKTOP CDs and

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merchandise will be available at the shop! BRICKTOP currently have two CDs available: the 2003 release “Born to Brawl” and 2011’s “Broken Bottles and Suicide Throttles”. BRICKTOP is what we here in The T like to call Thug Rock. If you like your punk heavy and awesome, you’ll love BRICKTOP. I hope I’ve given you enough incentive to go see Brent and the rest of the talent at Fastlane. While you’re there, buy a BRICKTOP record. Visit Brent at: Fastlane Tattoo 3801 N. Tucson, ph: 520.388.8282

AZ

Oracle

Rd.  85705

You can also check out artwork and other shop info at: http://fastlanetattooaz.com/ And, check out BRICKTOP at: www.myspace.com/tucsonbricktop www.reverbnation.com/bricktop https://www.facebook.com/pages/ BRICKTOP/85220658139

So regardless of whether you just take a ride or want to take a tour, remember University Pedi-Cabs, “We Can Take You There”.

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KaNdE SaYs: Basketball and Bare Feet By: Stephanie Swingle

a once in a lifetime opportunity to live his dream. Ben has a certain charm in his lyrics and the way he shares stories (getting stranded coming home from Phoenix) makes him easy to relate to. Watch out world, this guy is going places!

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y love for live music is much like my love for basketball. Screw the NBA, NCAA is where the heart is. I root for the underdog; anyone who’s lived through March Madness with me will vouch for that.   Once players make it to true baller status (not like they can’t/don’t get laid every night should they choose, but I’m talking about fat wallets here), they lose the heart and soul they play with in college. It just isn’t the same; in case you were wondering, my favorite underdog team is Marquette. So, as much fun as the big dogs are to see, if you want to witness soul, you root for the little guy. I originally went out to see my buddy, local bouncer and musician “Big” John Holmes. I’ve got mad love for anyone who keeps my ass safe at work, especially with my big mouth. John’s set was amazing and I am always pleasantly surprised when local musicians not only meet but beat my expectations talent-wise. Don’t even get me started on his choice of cover songs, Marvin Gaye’s Sexual Healing. Awesome cover choice, it’s the OG panty dropping song. Rock on, John Holmes, rock on! Following my bouncin’ buddy was local up and comer Ben Michaels. I’ve never seen him before but I hear he’s amazing. I grab a drink and settle in for the show, smack in front of the little bongo drummer, Kevin. Hello cuties! Oh, if only I was a decade younger! The thing I simply couldn’t get over was adorable Ben performing barefoot. I simply had to know why. Why, Ben, why? Watching Ben open for his mentor and idol was a really aweinspiring experience, 1 19

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The real underdog of the evening was Trevor Hall, a new-to-me folk/reggae singer hailing from South Carolina, of all places. Trevor played barefoot as well, which again left me curious. Certainly there is some deep and meaningful reason for bare feet. I anxiously awaited the opportunity to ask one or both performers why they did this. Although we didn’t bond over Lemon Drop martinis, we eventually had a chance to chat briefly. Once Trevor started playing, I was completely entranced. I witnessed one of the most musically inspired moments of my life. There was a point where I stood back and absorbed every word he sung. He closed his eyes and poured his heart into the microphone; it was so intimate. The song was Te Amo, “I want to be your shelter and I want you to shelter me.” He closed his eyes and he sung. He felt each word he shared, none of us were there; it was just Trevor and his music. That moment will stay with me a very long time. At one point I became angry because none of my friends have turned me on to him before now! What the heck, music is meant to be shared!

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HOT SPOT of the Month RJ’s Replays By: Don Martin Photos by: Frank Ramos

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here is a new live music venue on Tucson’s east side, RJ’s Replays, located in the old Berkey’s building. If you think RJ’s is Berkey’s II you’re wrong, the club has been completely remodeled. Rough wood paneling makes it a warm and comfortable place to be, a new stage for the bands is in the corner and a modest dance floor has been installed. I recently attended their grand opening. The first thing you will wonder upon entering RJ’s is if it’s a friendly Irish pub, a sports bar, or a live music venue. It is actually all of those things. RJ’s offers over 140 craft brews sure to please the palate of any beer lover. Popular beers are on tap, including some you wouldn’t expect, like 29 Gold Medal award- winning craft brews. The food menu ranges from appetizers to fuller fare. There are about 30 large flat-screen TV’s on the walls and they offer all the cable sports networks and most pay-per-view sports broadcasts. If you want to watch a PPV boxing or wrestling event, RJ’s is a good place to do it. RJ’s runs sports during the day into the early evening, when they seamlessly change to live music. This is when the fun starts! RJ’s currently books classic rock, jazz, and cover bands, in addition to bands that play original music. Richard, the owner, says he will include some country bands as well, so “people can two-step all night!” The night I was there the place was christened by the Bryan Dean Trio. You really can’t do much better than listen to a few sets of blistering blues. The BDT is one of the best blues bands in the country, and it is a pleasure to hear them. RJ’s is laid out a bit differently than some music venues. Some clubs pack you in so tight you think you are talking to the table next to you. At RJ’s the tables are spaced apart, which makes for a comfortable and casual experience. The night I was there the service staff was very attentive, right there the exact moment you wanted to order another drink. RJ’s also offers two private seating areas. Intended for

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people who want to sit together, there is no cover charge for them, and full bottle service is offered.The club wants to attract some of the U of A crowd. They could watch a U of A football game, and then hang around for some live music. Current students can show their Wildcat Card to receive a discount off of any appetizer. RJ’s reach extends beyond college kids, it extends to lovers as well. Richard says, “This historic building is [a place] memories can be made.” He continues, “I have met so many couples that have returned to the historic Berkey’s because this is where they met the love of their life. I hope that I have many more couples meet here at this new fun and exciting place.” RJ’s has an interesting plan for the future. They intend to be one of the first clubs in town to show 3-D sports, and their TV’s are already equipped for it. The problem is there are not many sports which are broadcast in 3-D. Richard says, “The last University of Arizona Wildcat football game was broadcast in 3-D and it was amazing to watch.” He continues, “You have to be here to see it, it‘s just like if you were at the game.” RJ’s is sponsoring Beerfest 2011. There you will get to sample their signature sliders, and drink some unique craft beers with 4000 other beer lovers. The club is at 5769 E. Speedway Blvd. The hours of operation are Monday – Friday, 11am – 2am. Saturday & Sunday, 9am -2am. RJ’s opens early on Saturday for all college ESPN Gameplan shows and on Sunday for NFL Ticket. They have a special breakfast menu on those two days for the early birds. RJ’s charges a modest cover of $3 to $5 for some special sporting and live music events. Children are welcome with a parent or guardian until 10PM. Karaoke is hosted from 9PM to 1AM every Wednesday. The live music schedule can be seen at www. rjsreplays.com.



BSceneLive October 2011