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August 19, 2011

On the Internet at

Volume V – Number 8

Get ready for... Dennis James -Courtesy of Dennis James

FREE Silent Movie



Story by Vince Meehan - Photo by Amber Stokosa

Come along for the BIG SHOW


San Diego's hardest working rock band doesn't do Rock N Roll by the numbers. Instead, it's a labor of love and good friends.

an Diego’s Dirty Birdz & The Horn Starz is one of the city’s more unique bands playing the local circuit. What makes this band unique is that it has eleven members, including a horn section, as well as back-up singers. This soulsteeped rock n roll kicks out some serious rhythm & blues, with heavy influence on the blues. The band has earned a wide faithful following not only by their high energy live shows, but a strong facebook presence as well. Married couple Augie and Mercedes Scalzitti make up the core and soul of the band. Augie is the guitarist/music director and ringleader of the circus, while Mercedes tackles the lead vocalist position. Together, they reside in a classic house that sits on a high hill in the shadow of Mt. Helix. This house came with a recording studio already built into a spare room, so for the two of them, it was love at first sight. Says Mercedes, “We lived in Golden Hill before, and found this gem up in the hills. With its 270 degree city view and cozy rustic feel, what’s not to love?

Silent movie master Dennis James returns to San Diego on Monday August 22 at 7:30 p.m. for Silent Movie Night, presented by the Spreckels Organ Society as part of the Summer International Organ Festival in Balboa Park. This year James will perform live accompaniment to the 1924 silent film version of J.M. Barrie’s “Peter Pan,” directed by Herbert Brenon and starring a petite, teenaged Betty Bronson as Peter Pan, Ernest Torrence as Captain Hook, Mary Brian as Wendy, Virginia Browne Faire as Tinker Bell and Anna May Wong as Tiger Lily. At the time this film was released it was lauded for its innovative special effects, and in 2000 the United States Library of Congress deemed it “culturally signifi-

See DIRTY BIRDS, page 15

See MOVIE, page 12


Former San Diego pitcher and Hall of Famer Randy Jones has brought his passion for barbecue to Mission Valley in the form of the Randy Jones All-American Sports Grill located in Hazard Center. Randy took over the former "Trophy’s Sports Grill" back in September, and gave the place his own personal make-over. The result is a down-home sports bar & grill, with a slightly up-scale decor. I got the opportunity to speak with Randy at his restaurant and was amazed at his enthusiasm for everything from food, to the Mission Valley area. Randy got into the barbecue business on a lark. With his inherited Texas roots, barbecue came as way of life as well as a tasty weekend ritual. His father had his own secret barbecue recipe which he shared with Randy. Then after he retired from baseball, he just happened to be in the right place at the right time. Says Randy, "Back in ‘94, a concessionaire for Qualcomm stadium organized a benefit golf tournament, and asked me if I would See RANDY JONES, page 4

Ronald McDonald comes to Mission Valley. Page 4

Local author Linda McMillin Pyle has a book signing in Old Town Page 2

Comedian and puppetmaster Jeff Dunham comes to San Diego Page 8

Page 2 — August 19, 2011

Mission Valley Car Wash Joins IMAGE


Local Business Teams with Homeland Security to Promote Legal Hiring

ON FILM by Vivian Nguyen


Jake Lonergan I’ll admit, upon hearing the title of the new movie Steven Spielberg was producing for this summer, I couldn’t help but snort a little. Cowboys & Aliens? The Western genre is already one of the most difficult genres to revive without seeming dated and cheesy… but to kick it up a notch by throwing in a colony of futuristic aliens? That’s a pretty gutsy move, even for you, Spielberg. I am also quite certain that many people followed the same thought process as I did, and saw the movie because they were curious about how director Jon Favreau was going to be able to translate the vision on to the big screen. The story begins with Jake Lonergan (Daniel Craig), a man who finds himself stranded in the middle of a desert with no recollection of who he is, or how he got there. The only clue he has is a foreign looking bracelet that is attached to his wrist. But it doesn’t take long for Lonergan to discover that he is a criminal and is subsequently arrested for his past crimes. Former Colonel Woodrow Dolarhyde (Harrison Ford), a short-tempered cattle rancher who cares of little else besides himself and his cowardly son, wants to take Lonergan as his prisoner for his own personal reasons. But there is no time to argue over this, for soon after Dolarhyde arrives on the scene, so do three large alien ships, which begin to mercilessly attack the small town. Instinctively, Lonergan uses his bracelet to gun the machines down, but not soon enough to rescue victims who See VIV, page 5

(left to right) John Murakami, Special Agent- Homeland Security Investigations, Yogi Mody, President - Body Beautiful Car Wash, Inc., Caray Hurtt, Office/ Accounting Manager, Body Beautiful Car Wash, Inc.

Body Beautiful in Mission Valley is the first car wash in the country to partner with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in an innovative program that helps businesses ensure that all their employees are authorized to work in the United States. Body Beautiful Car Wash, Inc., which operates four car wash facilities across San Diego County, has just become certified in the ICE Mutual Agreement between Government and Employers (IMAGE) program, a voluntary program of the Department of Homeland Security. Only six other businesses in San Diego County have achieved this certification. See IMAGE, page 5

Book Signing in Old Town Local author Linda McMillin Pyle, known for her books about exploring San Diego’s outdoors, will be hosting a book signing at Old Town Gift Co., located in Old Town’s Fiesta de Reyes on Saturday, Aug. 27th from 4 to 6 p.m., The author will sign her books about exploring the trails of Southern California where she shares 30 single day journeys with 55 tempting, trailtested recipes for beach, mountain or inland valley picnics.


A Day at the wiener

It’s time to crown San Diego’s fastest wiener dog! The racing dachshunds return Saturday, August 20th on the rugby fields at Qualcomm Stadium. Registration opens at 8 a.m.; racing begins at 9 a.m., and competition wraps up at approximately 11 a.m. The Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals is free to spectators, and serves as a fund-raiser for the non-profit Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl. The entry fee for dogs is $10 through August 12th, and $15 from August 21st through event day. For information and entries, visit or call (619) 283-5808.

Light Up San Diego City Heights will host an Asian Lantern Festival August 26-28, 2011 on El Cajon Boulevard. The festival will also host the first-ever Miss Asia San Diego 2011 Pageant on Saturday August 28 at 7:00pm after the festival’s Opening Ceremony. For more infomation, go to:

Mission Valley Library Needs Volunteers

The Mission Valley Library is currently seeking volunteers. to work at its branch. The library is a fun place to volunteer, and it looks great

on your resume! In today's job market, you will find that many other candidates for the position are equally qualified as you. In that case, volunteer work can often give you the edge that gets you hired. Not only that, but you can gain valuable experience in the process that may help you out in the future. For a list of current volunteer positions, go to page 4 — August 19, 2011

Page 3

Arthur Murray



Manager Steven Wilkerson and Jeanine Johnson of Arthur Murray Mission Valley strike a classic pose

Arthur Murray is celebrating 100 years as America’s premiere dance studio, and the Mission Valley branch located in the Hazard Center is hopping! The popularity of tv shows such as “Dancing with the Stars”, and “So You Think You Can Dance” has boosted enrollment by leaps and bounds. Manager Steven Wilkerson says that Arthur Murray is very much about social interaction as well as actual dancing. “We schedule you for a introductory session, where we show you some basics. At that point, you can decide where you’d like to focus.” says Steve. “This is done by signing up for various dance groups posted on our calendar featuring tango, salsa, waltz and other styles. This way, you can practice dancing with people in various expertise levels. It’s also a great way to meet and interact with fellow dance enthusiasts.” Steve adds that dancing has become a great part of your workout routine and has been very popular with college students. “Not only that, but once you are in our program, you can sign to dance at any of our studios worldwide.” That being said, you can now waltz in Austria!

lliance Healthcare Foundation and the San Diego County Medical Society Foundation are leading the San Diego outreach campaign of text4baby –a new free mobile information service providing timely health information to pregnant women and new moms from pregnancy through a baby’s first year. Women who sign up for the service by texting BABY to 511411 (or BEBE for Spanish) receive three free SMS text messages each week timed to their due date or baby’s date of birth. These messages focus on a variety of topics critical to maternal and child health, including birth defects prevention, immunization, nutrition, seasonal flu, mental health, oral health and safe sleep. Text4baby messages also connect women to prenatal and infant care services and other resources. This service is targeted at women who may not have access to the internet, but do have access to a cell phone. An educational program of the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition (HMHB), text4baby delivers timely health tips via text message to those who need it most. It is made possible through an unprecedented public-private partnership which includes the White House Office on Science and Technology Policy, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Voxiva, CTIA-The Wireless Foundation, Grey Healthcare Group (a WPP company) and founding corporate sponsor Johnson & Johnson.


Night Out San Diegans are invited to party in style as Fashion Valley salutes Fashion’s Night Out


The 2011 Spirits of Mexico Festival is set to showcase top agave spirits brewed by hundreds of distillers, September 11 to 18, in the heart of Mexican culture, Old Town San Diego. The week-long event is the largest, most comprehensive festival of agave-based spirits in North America, and will be packed with seminars discussing the finest spirits, tequila tastings, cocktail challenges, authentic Mexican dishes and an awards ceremony. The Spirits of Mexico Festival is presented by Polished Palate and has been noted as ‘one of four festivals not to miss’ by ‘O’, the Oprah Magazine. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit .


ashion's Night Out is a global initiative taking place across the country to celebrate the best of fall fashion. Shoppers will be blown away as retailers throughout the mall roll out the red carpet on the evening of Thursday, September 8. Fashion’s Night Out at Fashion Valley will kickoff at 6 p.m. with a fashion show in center court, From 6:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., participating retailers will offer special in store events and surprises with their own Fashion’s Night Out events. Shoppers will enjoy a fashionable evening packed with in-store DJs, cocktail parties, live mannequin modeling, special offers, giveaways and more! Come back to center court at 8:30, after having a chance to see your favorite runway looks in-store, for cocktails, lite bites and swag bags.

Page 4 — August 19, 2011 Randy Jones, from page 1

Ronald McDonald comes to Mission Valley Ronald McDonald (yes, THE Ronald McDonald) will be visiting Mission Valley next month as part of the “It’s Book Time with Ronald McDonald” program to kick off the back-to-school season. Ronald will visit Mission Valley Library on Aug. 20 at 10:30 a.m. to share his excitement for books and encourage kids to dedicate time every day to reading. Mission Valley Branch 2123 Fenton Parkway, San Diego, CA 92108

The 17th Annual San Diego Festival of Beer The 17th Annual San Diego Festival of Beer will once again take over the streets of downtown San Diego on Friday, September 9 in the Gaslamp Quarter at Columbia and B Streets. More than 5,000 San Diego beer lovers attend the annual event that features live bands on two stages, food, and more than 150 of San Diego’s finest craft beers. The Festival is a fundraiser for San Diego Professionals Against Cancer with 100 percent of the proceeds benefiting local cancer charities. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

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participate. I agreed to do it, and then proceeded to win it!” This relationship ended up with Randy being offered two barbecue stands at the stadium, and “Randy Jones’ BBQ” was born. Later, he came up with the idea of establishing an actual restaurant after being inspired by his sister who was in the food business. He then spent time trying to scout out a good location. Eventually, he found the Mission Valley site, and the rest is history. The menu is heavy on barbecue, of course but there is something for everybody including salads, pastas, and even barbecue salmon! Randy’s pièce de résistance is a meatloaf inspired by his mother who used barbecue sauce in lieu of catsup. Randy even has his own line of hot sauce, rubs, jalapeno jelly and... wait for it... barbecue sauce! Randy still is connected to the San Diego Padres as an employee by doing PR for the club. He also does pre-game commentary on sportsradio XX 1090, so the ties to baseball have never been severed. He says he loves the connection to sports that his Mission Valley location gives him, especially with the trolley station right in back. Randy Jones’ All-American Sports Grill features an outdoor patio which groups can rent out for the night. This is a great feature for clubs, church groups, and reunions. As I was leaving, a group of three retired women stopped Randy to say hello and thank you. Randy greeted them and the smallest of the three said, “We came because of you, but we’re coming back because of the food! It was fantastic!” Randy beamed and shot me a look that said “This is what it’s all about!” Indeed.

Come Volunteer at the Mission Valley Library!

The library is a fun place to volunteer, and it looks great on your resume! If you have some time to spare and would like to share your talents with the library, please call, or come into the library to discuss volunteer opportunities. Here are just a few possibilities: 1) We always need people who are willing to shelve books. 2) People who are comfortable on a computer and want a “sit-down” job, might be interested in helping us look up books on the computer (called “weeding” the collection). 3) For people who are very focused and like quiet jobs, we need someone who can come in and “read” the shelves. They literally come in and read the spine labels on the books on the shelves to make sure they are in the right place. 4) Crafty person? We need someone to help mend and cover our books. 5) Background in marketing or publicity? We need to get the word out about all of the free programs we have to offer. 6) Interested in art? We would like to have someone coordinate monthly art exhibits in our community room. 7) Interested in graphic design? We need someone who can come in and create flyers for our programs. We can offer limited training in this area. Thank you very much for supporting your local library and community! Rita Glick, Branch Manager - Mission Valley Branch Library 2123 Fenton Parkway San Diego, CA 92108 (858) 573-5007 — August 19, 2011

Page 5 Viv, from page 2

• • • • • • • •

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had been snatched from the ground by these foreign flying vessels. Together, Lonergan and Dolarhyde must work together along with the brave remaining townspeople, to travel across the land and locate the main headquarters of the terrifying creatures that are invading their town. There is no sanctuary from the aliens, as they attack during the cloak of night, and soar in the skies during the heat of day. During the long, arduous journey, the townsfolk lose many people, and encounter many unlikely friends and enemies. But with every step, another piece of Lonergan’s past is unveiled, and they get closer to their destination with the help of his recovering memory. The movie is surprisingly sharp and witty, which one would not expect from a Western, Sci-Fi film. Not that one would know what to expect because such a film has never been made before. But in addition to the heart-stopping, well-executed action scenes, there is also clever dialogue and a good balance of comic relief to lighten the intensity of the film. Sure, Favreau could have done a lot better with smoothing the gap between the two genres, and could have taken the movie to less predictable routes; the aliens were cliche slimy and gross-looking and the characters weren’t as complicated as they could have been, but for an action summer flick, this movie does its job... it entertains. All in all, I recommend you go see the movie. As one should not judge a book by its cover, one should not judge a movie by its title. Yes, it’s about cowboys and aliens. But it’s actually pretty epic. Besides, at the end of the day, who doesn’t want to see Indiana Jones and James Bond fighting side by side? If that’s not enticing enough to go see this movie, I don’t know what is.

Image, from page 2 “Our company is committed to creating a positive impact in the San Diego economy by only hiring local workers who are eligible to legally work in the United States,” said Body Beautiful president Yogi Mody. “This creates a more stable workforce where employees can keep their jobs for the long term.” Through the program, all of the employees at Body Beautiful are verified by both the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration before they are allowed to work. Additionally, the company’s staff is trained with the latest information on detecting fraudulent documentation that may be used to illegally gain employment. “Throughout my more than 30 years’ experience running Body Beautiful, it has been important to me that we follow all state and federal guidelines related to hiring practices, said Mody. “With the IMAGE program in place, I can feel the utmost confidence in my hiring choices.” The company has also established internal policies in line with the IMAGE program’s best practices, including a written employment policy, training programs, a tip line and very strict anti-discrimination safeguards. “As an immigrant, I know the value of hard work and playing by the rules. Body Beautiful is dedicated to earning the respect and loyalty of our employees and customers by demonstrating that we follow the rule of law in all employment practices, including paying legal wages,” said Mody. “Our high standards also ensure our customers receive the highest level of service when they come to one of our locations.”

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Page 6 — August 19, 2011


Valley Views By Gina Cord, Founder of this newspaper

Profile on Kaushal Patel, Channel 10 News Anchor What a wonderful addition to morning news with Kaushal Patel, together with Channel 10’s 35-year veteran anchor, Bill Griffith! They work well with each other and are beautiful to watch every morning. Bill’s boyish face topped with his now white hair produced by his dramatic recovery of breast cancer, make a dramatic presence with Kaushal’s exotic black hair and expressive black eyes… she is more beautiful in person than on TV. They both have to really love the careers they have chosen to rise every morning at 2 to 2:30 am and be at the studio for the 4:30 am news presentation. As you watch them, you know they love what they are doing! Kaushal’s parents came from Kaushal Patel India but she was born in the USA and attended the University of Texas/El Paso to major in Marketing Management and Finance, but one day she walked down the hallway to the Journalism department to see if they had an internship for the summer and she was put to work with a reporter. On the first day out, she said “This is what I want to do!” And she’s been doing it ever since. Her first job was as a reporter on El Paso TV, then moved to Yuma, Arizona, as an anchor for a couple of years, and Tucson as anchor for another two years. then on to Dallas as anchor and reporter for two more years. Following that assignment, in the answer to her prayers, she went to Atlanta with CNN as anchor for the International Division. That position lead her to Hong Kong with CNN for another year, but she missed her close family and returned to the USA. Since her brother resides in San Diego, she was fortunate enough to land the position with Channel 10. And now, she says, “I am very fortunate to have my family closer (her father is the Director of the Kidney Transplant Lab in El Paso) and to have a fascinating job in America’s Finest City! Now I only want to help those less fortunate and hopefully, to motivate them.” See GINA, page 14

Vietnamese cuisine BY LISA COX

GARLIC The Stinking Rose! Garlic, affectionately known as “The Stinking Rose” is an ingredient widely used in Asian cuisine. Raw garlic is pungent and spicy; however, the flavor mellows and sweetens as it is cooked. Another type of garlic used in Asian cuisine is black garlic. Black garlic tastes sweet and syrupy with hints of balsamic vinegar or tamarind. Black garlic is achieved by fermenting whole bulbs of garlic at a high temperature. When garlic undergoes this process, the sugars and amino acids in the garlic produce melanoidin which is a dark colored substance that is responsible for the black color. You can purchase black garlic at specialty markets or online. Roasted garlic makes a great appetizer. To roast garlic, cut the top off the bulb, exposing the tips of the cloves. Set the garlic heads (cut side up) on a sheet of aluminum foil and drizzle with olive oil and salt. Wrap the heads in foil and roast for about 45 minutes until tender. Let cool before peeling. Serve with crackers and crusty bread. You can also make aioli by mixing garlic with egg yolks and olive oil. For the best tasting recipes, I always recommend using fresh garlic; however, in a pinch, substitute 1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder (which equals one clove of garlic).

READ US ONLINE AT: www.MissionValleyNewscom — August 19, 2011

Guitar ZONe

Page 7

How to take care of your Acoustic guitar (Part 3)


n acoustic guitar is exposed to many elements that can harm it, which requires us to maintain it so we have years and years of fun playing. My last columns talked about humidity and changing strings. Today we’re looking at the guitar’s body and neck. Guitars come with many finishes. A popular finish consists of polyurethane. It’s a lacquer that is applied very thinly so to not mute the natural vibration of the guitar’s top. It’s fairly crack resistant and easy to clean. Guitar stores will want to sell you all kinds of elixirs that promise more than they actually deliver. Remember, the more goo you put on the more layers you add to your guitar’s finish. Simply use a 100% cotton cloth slightly moistened with water to wipe and clean the body and neck. I don’t advise using too much wax or guitar polish - use sparingly if at all. A tiny bit of automotive paste wax such as Turtle Wax or Meguiar’s is okay occasionally should there be a lot of dirt buildup. Another guitar finish is called “French Polish”, which is considered the premier finish for classical concert guitars. It’s a shellac-based finish and the process requires the luthier to really know what he’s doing. Cleaning this finish is similar to the one already mentioned but adding any kind of guitar wax is not at all recommended. This concludes my column on guitar care. Tune in next time when I talk about “A Beginner’s Guide to playing Guitar”.

By Dennis Hartmann

Scott Harris Comes to By Vince Meehan

Little Italy

Renowned Chef Scott Harris has opened his newest restaurant Davanti in Little Italy. Scott is famous for his string of hit eateries in his home town of Chicago such as The Purple Pig and Mia Francesca. Scott created a trend in the Chicago restaurant scene that has become a benchmark for urban dining. Harris believes that serving great quality ingredients and large portions amid a fun atmosphere is the reason for his success today. Scott lives with his wife here in San Diego, but travels to Chicago all the time. Scott says that with Davanti, he intends to offer a varied fare as opposed to spotlighting a certain region of Italy. He says he wants to create a fun, casual and affordable dining experience for San Diegans. One of the reasons Scott chose his location is the large outdoor patio out back. He intends to plant a large olive tree as the centerpiece of the patio. Scott also says in addition to the requisite Italian wines, he intends to showcase a decent selection of Californian wines as well. As the saying goes, "When in Rome..." Or in this case, California. As far as the food goes, it is basically Italian with a few other things thrown in for people in the mood for something non italiano. And by being in Little Italy, he won't have to go far for authentic Italian ingredients! A domani Scott!


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Page 8

1 Louder — August 19, 2011

JEFF DUNHAM Popular ventriloquist and stand-up comedian Jeff Dunham with his entire comedy team will perform at Pala Casino on August 26th. Dunham’s TV specials and his series were the highest-rated programming in Comedy Central history. It seems like everybody loves this puppetmaster!

WHATS UP San Diego's 1 Louder has entered the Viejas Ultimate Music Challenge. It puts 40 cover bands up against each other for the title of the Best in San Diego and first place wins $25,000 Starting Sunday August 14, for 8 straight Sundays, you can see five bands each night. The winner of each night goes onto the Semi-finals and then the Finals on Sunday October 23. Phasers on Stun will perform at the Tin Can Ale house on Sept. 9th as well as the Soda Bar Sept. 15th in support of their debut, three-song EP Don’t miss the opportunity to catch the band's explosive live shows as Phasers on Stun begins its mission to reclaim rock music for the 21st century. These guys are great songwriters. Explosions in the Sky come to San Diego on September 2nd for a show at Soma. in support of their sixth studio album Take Care, Take Care, Take Care. The Texas band will then play a few more California shows, the Pacific Northwest, and return to Europe in November.

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Page 9


NIGHT LIFE The Tower Bar

Tuesday Night 10pm After a night of watching the Padres lose at Petco Park, my buddy and I decided to stop off somewhere on the way home to try and have a beer to wash away the aftertaste of the buffoonery we witnessed. Honestly. I've never seen a baseball game where the home team got booed by their own fans. Football games yes, after all, I am a Chargers fan. We rolled up to the Tower Bar on University in City Heights. I told myself a while back that I'd never head into City Heights, but here I was! Actually it was a bit nostalgic because I used to live in LA where there were all sorts of these type of gritty bars tucked away in sketchy neighborhoods. The place has no windows, has boxes of junk in the corners, and smells kinda like a dog blanket, but that's the character of the joint. And for a Tuesday night, the place was packed. Well ok, 25 people could pack the place, but it was packed. Bands set up in the cramped octagon shaped main room that used to be the base of a tower which gave the bar its name. The band Unwynd played their hearts out on a bed of dirty carpet scrapes, jumbles of guitar cords, and bits of particle-board which are always present in these type of places, but I can never figure where they come from. Unwynd played good high energy rock with a twin vocal approach that included really good harmonies. The unofficial outfit for the guys was untucked plaid shirts and fedora hats which reminded me of being in Silver Lake. The good news was that people seemed to prefer Guinness on tap as opposed to the ever-so-lame tall boy can of Pabst Blue Ribbon. It was definitely dude heavy, but some chicks came in throughout the night that weren't bad at all. Thanks for the nostalgia trip Tower Bar! -Vince Meehan

Much ADO


2011 SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL Now through September 24 One of the most popular and charming of Shakespeare’s comedies, Much Ado About Nothing features the original battle of the sexes couple - Benedick, an arrogant and confirmed bachelor, and Beatrice his favorite sparring partner. While Beatrice and Benedick hide their infatuation beneath witty barbs, young love blossoms as Hero and Claudio race to the altar. When the wicked Don John conspires to break up the wedding, will false accusations and misunderstandings prevent the young couple’s happy ending?


Page 10 — August 19, 2011

Goes Electric

by Vince Meehan

San Diego's Taylor guitars has long been synonymous with high-end acoustic and classical guitars. Their reputation of craft and quality has earned them a loyal band of followers including some of the highest ranking acoustic guitar performers from all over the globe. But now, Taylor has stepped into the world of the electric guitar with it's "T" model guitars. I stepped into Rick's Guitar Shop on Morena recently and was awestruck at the new guitar. Rick seemed a bit surprised at my reaction and told me that these models actually have been out for awhile. That was the first I had heard of it, I guess I have to get out more often. In true Taylor character, the guitar is absolutely beautiful. It very similar in looks and playing style to a thin hollow-body like an Ibanez Artist, which I love. Rick picked up the "T-5" model which he explained is T for Taylor, and 5 for the number of pick-up positions available. The T-5 has two humbucking pick-ups which can be switched to single coil, and an acoustic sensor buried under the fretboard. This gives the guitar the ability to create guitar tones ranging from rich acoustic, to tinny telecaster. It's great for performing live from either an acoustic or electric amp. Rick from Rick's Guitar plays the Taylor T-5

Comic Con! Movie Producers Stay True to the Roots By Elle Winsett

After a few weeks of not having anything to really nerd out over, I'm feeling considerable post-con depression. Comic Con this year wasn't a huge blow out, but it was worth it. Oh was it worth it. Once the exhibit hall opened that Thursday, most fans were absent, checking out panels that started early in the day. When Friday came along, people relaxed in Hall H rather than filling up the Exhibit Hall aisles. When there were crowds, it was all focused around giveaways and signings. The biggest line I managed to see in the exhibit hall this year was the line for signings from Robert Kirkman, the creator of The Walking Dead comic book, still getting well deserved attention thanks to the show. This year was all about real comic books being made into real movies and real television shows. The Amazing Spider-Man, a reboot of the Spider Man film franchise, is solely being marketed to the fans of the comic. And it was one of the most well received panels this year, it's star being just as amped as the fans about bringing a new level to the character. Even the panel for the next Ghost Rider film emphasized a return to the spirit of the comic book. The stars of each movie were genuine about what they were making, confident in the source material that they were receiving, and making sure that Comic Con fans got to see it before anyone else. A majority of the films currently out made a special debut at the convention this year. Films like: Cowboys and Aliens, Captain America, Fright Night, and Attack the Block. All were well received, especially Attack the Block, an English film offering a new spin on the alien invasion story. Keep an eye out for this one! Overall, I found this to be one of the best Comic Cons I've attended. It didn't spurn comic book fans with Hollywood hype or featured stars that were detached from their audience. Let's hope I can cure that post-con depression before next year... which is bound to be even better.



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R Walid

a omay

San Diego has a new online source of wine thanks to Walid Romaya, a California based wine blogger whose family has strong connections in the wine and retail trade going back to 1983. Based in Alpine, Prince of Wine's philosophy is to keep an open mind about various wine styles and different palates, while retaining the very highest standards in wine quality. Says Walid, "Our California location lets us interact regularly with winemakers, and be privy to wines that may not be widely available. We taste frequently to decide on wine selections and we strive to bring you wines that reflect our philosophy." Not only do they keep tabs on winemakers in our area like Temecula, but also showcase wines from recently discovered wineries in places like Chile and Australia.

619-335-3894 — August 19, 2011

Page 11

What's In

by Agnes Morales




“I did not have three thousand pairs of shoes. I had one thousand and sixty.” -Imelda Marcos






Summer is not over yet, but it is winding down. However, September in California means lot's of outdoor entertaining, so you'll need to dress with summer evenings in mind. Sandals and shorts are still a part of the motif, but you'll probably want to layer up on top. 1) Simply tie up your blouse on the way out of the office and head out for evening fun. 2) Black & Silver teardrop earrings complete the outfit. 3) A striped v-neck shirt is a sure attention getter for any guy! 4) If you are Irish, show some Celtic pride with a gold cross necklace. 5) Leather sandals for men are always a better fashion pick than flip-flops. 6) A jeweled butterfly pin is a classy accessory. 7) Look like a star with Dolce and Gabbana designer eyewear. 8) This zip up jacket by Pretty Boy Apparel makes a bold statement, and is great to throw on if the fog rolls in. Agnes Morales is the owner of Alwayz In clothing boutique in North Park. For more on Agnes and her boutique, go to:

Vinyasa Yoga In (& Around) Mission Valley: Namaste Pacific


By Lauren Westerfield, RYT

If traditional Ashtanga yoga is a classicists' practice – regimented, sequential and predictable – then Vinyasa yoga is an ideal alternative for teachers and students who prefer to let loose. Free from the set posture sequences and austerity generally associated with Ashtanga practice, free-form Vinyasa maintains a focus on conscious breathing and physical rigor while leaving room for interpretation in asana selection, practice environment, pacing and class atmosphere. Often described as "power yoga” or "flow yoga," Vinyasa yoga is defined primarily by the breath. Students perform postures in a flowing style, moving from one asana to another in accordance with rhythmic breathing. Classes often begin with Sun Salutations (Surya Namaskara), a common sequence of approximately 12 asanas, and go on to incorporate a variety of other standing, balancing and core-centric poses. Many Vinyasa teachers also incorporate music into their classes, while others use heated classrooms to maximize detoxification and cardio intensity.

Hybrid yoga studio and wellness center, offering traditional Ashtanga series classes, personal training and yoga for beginners. $$. 3919 4th Avenue, Suite E, San Diego CA 92103. 619-800-3321

Mystic Water Yoga Studio Meditative Vinyasa yoga and other styles in a nature-inspired, new-age Kava bar. Classes may take place while the bar is open, so be prepared for spectators. $$. 3811 Ray Street, San Diego CA 92104. 619-255-6475.

CorePower Yoga

Modern, fitness-oriented power yoga incorporating heat, resistance training, core work and more. $$. 980 Camino De La Reina, Unit #4. San Diego CA 92108. 619-574-9642.

Artists Unite

Artist Billy Martinez is a part of the new San Diego alliance of artists who have banded together to promote Art, Fashion, and Music.

Page 12 — August 19, 2011

YOU'VE BEEN HACKED! - Spyware and other nasty bugs

Tech Topics

Remember the good old days when you ran your virus scanner once a week and it mostly came back clean? Those were the days, my friend. Today’s attacks are more vicious than ever and come in various disguises. Let’s get started on their names: adware, spyware, malware, keystroke loggers, trojans, the list is endless. The question I get is always the same: “How did I end up getting infected? The answer is: There is no uniform answer. It could have been a malicious website or a “check out this weblink” e-mail, supposedly from a friend of yours. Nothing is impossible. Some even disguise themselves as “Anti Virus” software, luring people into buying their so-called software. I hope you’re not one of those fools that did so. These infections are not only a nuisance, but also extremely dangerous. Key loggers, for instance, can track every move of yours and transmit your keystrokes to criminals logging on to online banking, your Amazon account, etc. Get the drift? Also, cleaning your PC of these infections can sometimes be costly or in some instances even requires a complete reload of your Operating System. Cool with that? I didn’t think so. So let’s talk security and how to avoid being a victim. Make sure you have solid and up-to-date anti-virus software installed. I usually combine AV software with Malwarebytes ( or Spybot, Search & Destroy (www. Both Malwarebytes and Spybot are free to download. Both require you to run manual scans of your PC (don’t forget to update their databases first, each time you run a scan!). Malwarebytes can be purchased as well which automates the scanning and updating. I think it’s well worth the money. So, be safe and protect your identity. Dennis Hartmann IT Consulting -


an with artm is H n n De

Movie, from page 1

Open Daily until 2am • (Sunday 4pm – 2am) • $10 dances until 10pm * Friday and Sat until 7pm • Free cover free dance until 6pm daily

($10 drink charge) Free lunch till 3pm m-sat • Military Special: Mondays $5 cover charge and unlimited fountain drink $5 Shot and a beer next door at Paradise Mondays only, no premiums • Free pool, hookah lounge, bar and grill next door

• Dub Step Mondays featuring DJ “Bama” • Birthday and Bachelor and

bachelorette party headquarters.

Call club to book party and find out about our free Limo Bus! FREE ADMISSION

Déjà vu Showgirls 2720 Midway Dr. San Diego CA 92110

(Mission Valley News) Must be 18+ with valid id. l Not valid during special events.


$10 unlimited fountain drink charge will apply.

Open Daily until 2am (Sunday 4pm – 2am)

Expires: 9/15/11

Find us on Facebook/Twitter/Youtube

cant” and it is now preserved in the Betty Bronson as Peter Pan National Film Registry. For more than thirty years, Dennis James has played a pivotal role in the international revival of silent film presented with live music. Starting as a pianist for university screenings, James now tours worldwide under the auspices of his Silent Film Concerts production company presenting professional silent film screenings with piano, theatre organ, chamber ensemble and full symphony orchestra accompaniments. Performing for film with orchestras since 1971 throughout the USA, Canada, Mexico and Europe, James is renowned for providing the most comprehensive selection of authentic silent film with live music presentations available today. All 2011 Summer International Organ Festival concerts begin at 7:30 p.m. and are free of charge. Music loving children and pets are welcome. Light snacks, beverages and unique gifts are available on the pavilion grounds with proceeds benefiting the nonprofit Spreckels Organ Society, helping to preserve, program and promote the Spreckels Organ as a world treasure for all people. The Spreckels Organ and Pavilion were a gift from John D. and Adolf Spreckels, of the Spreckels sugar family, and were dedicated and first played on December 31, 1914. The Spreckels Organ is the largest outdoor pipe organ in America and is sponsored by the City of San Diego, The Department of Parks and Recreation and the nonprofit Spreckels Organ Society who assure that this civic treasure entertains music lovers throughout the year. Afternoon organ concerts by Dr. Carol Williams, San Diego Civic Organist, and guest artists are performed every Sunday at 2:00 p.m. free of charge.

Record to DVD • Play on your computer or TV. Film 8mm & 16mm to DVD Slides & photos to DVD Video tapes deteriorate...Don’t lose your memories!

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5390 Napa St. Ste. “A” • San Diego, CA 92110 • 619.220.8500 — August 19, 2011

Page 13

Readers Write Brilliant Cartoon, Vince - Re: Diego Dude Now I understand everything. The City workers and their wretched unions allowed the City bosses to raid their pension fund year after year to support corrupt, underfunded pork-barrel projects. The City workers then compelled our heroic downtown suits to overcompensate them with outrageous pension benefits and doubledipping schemes. The unions have refused to even meet the taxpayers halfway by accepting wage freezes and unpaid furlough days, right, Vince? Now those worthless union goons have originated the idea of a tax on cats so they don’t have to fill potholes. This kind of malicious ignorance isn’t funny, just sad. Seosamh Ceallachain, San Diego.

Flapjack Fundraiser Join us on Sat., Sept. 10 from 8-10 a.m. for a fun fundraiser at Applebee’s in Mission Valley, 7510 Hazard Center Dr. The Pug Rescue Board of Directors will be serving you breakfast! For only $10, you will get pancakes, bacon, scrambled eggs, coffee, orange juice, soda, and hot or ice tea and be served by us. Applebee’s will have mimosas and bloody Marys available for $3 per drink. You can purchase tickets using Paypal at www.pugbutts. com. Click on “Donate” and be sure to indicate “Flapjack Fundraiser” in the “add special instruction to seller” section. You can also buy tickets from any of our board members or mail your check to our PO Box: Pug Rescue of San Diego County, Flapjack Fundraiser, PO Box 151449, San Diego, 92175-1449. For more information, contact (619) 685-3580. Be sure to indicate that the donation is for the fundraiser and mail your check by Sept. 1 so we have time to get your tickets to you. The cutoff for Paypal ticket purchases online is also Sept. 1, and the tickets will also be mailed to you. After Sept. 1, you may purchase tickets at the door. Invite your friends and family for a fun Saturday morning breakfast and help support the pugs at the same time!

How often have you driven down Friars Road and seen a large pothole? Or even worse, discovered it right after your car runs it over? You want to report the problem to the City when you get home but by the time you get there you have forgotten the location of the pothole. Unfortunately with no one reporting it, the pothole only gets larger and more dangerous. This scenario has unfortunately become a San Diego tradition and is a common story I hear when meeting with residents. They are frustrated by the state of their road conditions and feel that there should be more simple and efficient ways to report potholes in Mission Valley. After hearing these concerns my office decided to partner with an outside firm to develop “San Diego 311” a Smartphone app and online widget that serves as a one stop shop of City services and streamlines how those services are provided. Mission Valley residents can report potholes, abandoned vehicles, graffiti, illegal dumping, broken sidewalks and much more instantaneously from their Android, Blackberry or I-Phones. The program can also be accessed online through an online widget. San Diego 311 uses the latest technology in geo-tagging technology to automatically provide the problem’s location when residents report problems from their phones. This simplifies the reporting process for residents and speeds up the time for City employees to respond to the report. This program finally catches the City up to modern day technology and creates a new platform that will cut costs and provide an instrument that easily allows residents to report problems in their community. San Diego 311 literally puts City services at residents’ fingertips, and I hope you’ll join me in downloading this app to start improving our community today. For instructions on how to download the App and Widget please visit http:// or contact our office at 619-236-6655 or email CarlDemaio@SanDiego.Gov, Councilmember Carl DeMaio We welcome all comments from our readers. Please write to:

Attention Local Bands! Send in a CD with a photo of your band to the Mission Valley News for a chance to be showcased in our publication. Remember any press is good press! Got a gig?

New Album? Press Release? Send show dates & venue to:

Mission Publishing


Send a CD of your song with a short bio and photo to: Mission Valley News 6549 Mission Gorge Road #199 San Diego, CA 92120 6549 Mission Gorge Road #199 San Diego, CA 92120 • 619.283.9747

Group, LLC publishers of

Mission Times Courier La Mesa Courier





Vince Meehan extension 134

Girls gone


A deployed KC-10 Extender crew made it an all-female day, as all four crew positions were held by females. Staff Sgt. Lindy Campbell is from Sacramento, Calif.1st Lt. Jen Carter is from Fairfield, Calif. Staff Sgt. Sarah Lockley is from Burlington, N.J. Capt. Lindsey Bauer is from Medfield, Mass. “I’ve been in the Air Force for six years and it’s almost impossible to get an all-girl flight,” said Staff Sgt. Lindy Campbell, a boom operator and flight air refueler for the 908th Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron. One reason it is almost impossible to have an all-female crew in the KC-10 is the fact that Staff Sgt. Sarah Lockley is the only female KC-10 flight engineer in the Air Force.

Mission Publishing Group, LLC


Robert A. Sanchez extension 137

Vince Meehan extension 134

Lionel Talaro extension 128

Circulation: 20,000. Published 12 times in 2011 and delivered throughout our circulation area of Mission Valley, San Diego, California by Mission Publishing Group, LLC. Classified ads and articles must be submitted by mail, e-mail or dropped off at our business address, 6549 Mission Gorge Road #199, San Diego 92120. Publisher reserves the right to refuse any advertisements or material submitted which are deemed to be objectionable. Publisher’s liability for errors: Mission Valley News & Views assumes no financial liability for errors nor for omission of copy and upon request will furnish a letter of correction to the advertiser. The Publisher, Mission Publishing Group, LLC., shall not be liable for any error in published advertising unless an advertiser proof is requested in writing 12 days prior to publication date and clearly marked for corrections. If the error is not corrected by the Publisher, the liability, if any, shall not exceed the space occupied for the error. Further, the Publisher shall not be liable for any omission of an advertisement ordered to be published. On written request, Publisher shall reschedule and run the omitted advertisement at the advertiser’s cost. All claims for adjustment must be made in writing within 30 days of the date of publication. In no case shall the Publisher be liable for any general, special or consequential damages.


Gina Cord l Elizabeth Berg Ron Roberts l Jeff Barnes Lisa Cox l May Star Dennis Hartmann l Agnes Morales Lauren Westerfield l Elle Winsett Adolfo A. Muniz l Vivian Nguyen


The next issue of the Mission Valley News comes out Friday, September 16th. The advertising deadline is Tuesday, September 6th.

Equal Housing Opportunity: Real estate advertising in Mission Valley News is subject to the Federal Fair Housing Law which makes it illegal to advertise “any preference, limitation or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin or an intention to make any such preference, limitation or discrimination.” Mission Valley News & Views will not knowingly accept any advertising for real estate that is in violation of the law. This is to notify Mission Valley News readers that all dwellings advertised in Mission Valley News are available on an equal opportunity basis. To complain of discrimination call HUD at 1-800-669-9777 or TTY at 1-800-927-9275. News and information printed in Mission Valley News is obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but accuracy on information sent to the paper cannot be guaranteed. Articles and opinions of writers or letters to the editor that are submitted for publication to the Mission Valley News are the views of the writers and should not be considered the views of the publisher. Content of paid advertisements is solely the responsibility of the advertiser. © 2007–2011, all rights reserved.

Page 14 — August 19, 2011

at your SERVICE These businesses are in your area.

Take advantage of what Mission

Valley has to offer!

Daniel Anderle 619.296.3400

1040 University Ave. Suite B211 San Diego, CA 92103

Serving Homeowner Associations since 1978 Contractor’s Lic. #388579

email • web •

(619) 697-8302

Gina, from page 6 In addition to her time-consuming job, she has completed a documentary on an orphanage in Ethiopia, and a travel documentary on surfing in Costa Rica. She also won an Associated Press award for “Best Investigative Reporting” for her work on emphasizing the dangers to children of drugs purchased in foreign countries. In her relatively short career, Kaushal has been all around the world, and we are lucky to have her settled here in San Diego celebrating her first anniversary at Channel 10!!

Major Financing Announced by Sudberry Properties Sudberry Properties, a leading commercial developer in Southern California, announced a major milestone that will enable it to advance its vision for development in key areas of Southern California. The company has secured more than $164 million in financing for five major properties, four in San Diego County and one in Riverside County. Colton Sudberry, president, said the financing packages cover both new and existing developments in the Sudberry Properties portfolio. “The most significant is a $59.5 million package for Circa 37, the apartment homes that launch the first phase of our new Civita community in Mission Valley,” said Sudberry. “It took some 10 years of planning, designing and a bit of dreaming to get to this point.” Civita is a 230-acre walkable masterplanned community with attainable housing, village shops, businesses, abundant parklands and open space arising over 12 to 15 years from a 70-year old quarry in the center of Mission Valley. When completed, Civita will be a model sustainable, mixed-use community with up to 4,780 residential units and almost 1 million square feet of retail, office, open and civic space. Construction is now underway on the first for-sale neighborhood, Origen by Shea Homes, a collection of three- and four-story row homes. The grand opening is scheduled for later this year. Dale Northrup, senior vice president of Wells Fargo Bank, which financed Circa 37, said the launch of Civita is an important milestone for real estate development in San Diego. "Residential construction has been at historic lows and we are pleased to participate in Circa 37, which is well-conceived and raises the bar for quality development in Mission Valley,” said Northrup. We welcome What’s News and Who’s News in MissionValley for this column. Please send the information to Gina Cord at

GEMS& JEWELS By Enhancery Jewelers, Kathleen White, Graduate Gemologist, GIA

HOW TO AVOID CHLORINE STRESS ON JEWELRY Chlorine stress cracking is a chemical reaction between gold jewelry and chlorine that causes breakdown of the metal causing broken prongs and ring shanks. Chlorine dissolves the alloys found in white and yellow gold and can cause a perfectly good and often new piece of jewelry to break. Chlorine is found with increasing use in household “non-abrasive” cleaners and of course in laundry detergents and bleach. It is also used in pool and hot tub water. Hot tub water is five times more damaging due to heat and increased chlorine concentrations. What can you do to avoid this costly problem? Take off rings while cleaning and try to avoid wearing jewelry in the pool or hot tub. Rings set with stones, especially with prongs are most subject to damages. BIRTHSTONE OF THE MONTH - PERIDOT Peridot is the official birthstone for the month of August. It is also the stone for the Zodiac sign of Libra. Peridot may also be given as a gem on the 16th wedding anniversary. The name Peridot is pronounced (Pear- a- doe). Peridot is the gem variety of olivine and ranges between 6.5 and 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness. Gem quality peridot comes from Arizona, Burma, Norway, islands in the Red Sea, Hawaii and is sometimes found in meteorites. Call Enhancery Jewelers at (619)282-3900 for answers to any gem and jewelry questions you may have. Enhancery Jewelers is located in the Chili’s Shopping Center at 4242 Camino del Rio N.#17 (at I-8 & Mission Gorge). Open Tues.-Fri., 10-6 pm; Sat. 10-4pm. Martin and Kathleen White have owned Enhancery Jewelers for over thirty one years. They specialize in diamond and gemstone jewelry, custom design, appraisals, jewelry and watch repairs. Visit us on the web at or follow us on Facebook... Advertisement — August 19, 2011

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"When everyone’s there, and a new tune comes together - it’s pretty incredible". -Augie Scalzitti Dirty Birdz, from page 1 Dirty Birdz and the Horn Starz have roots that go back to a popular local band called “Vamp” which played the San Diego circuit in the 90’s. In fact, bassist Steve Thurston and drummer Erick Manchaca have been solid Birdz members from back in the day. Augie praises these guys for their commitment and loyalty throughout the years. “It’s very fortunate to know guys like that who are great players and into this unique genre as well” says Augie. Back then, their singer was from Los Angeles and would often be unavailable for important shows. Mercedes, who had a legacy of her own by playing in San Diego and Los Angeles bands, began to pressure Augie into letting her have a crack at the lead vocal position. Augie had reservations about the idea, so he tricked her into a covert audition by suggesting a karaoke date at Norma Jean’s. Mercedes killed that night, so she got the gig, and a year later they were married. Vamp then changed its name to Dirty Birdz and the Horn Starz a couple of years ago. The Birdz love classic instruments, and revel in playing Gibson and Fender guitars, through Vox and Ampeg amps. This unique sound, paired with the brass section, creates an unmistakable sound similar to Augustana on caffeine. Live gigs and studio recording is what this band is all about, and they have an infectious passion for it which has earned them a large following. Augie always had a penchant for hard hitting rock, but with a bit of a Motown thrown in; so the horn section is an intricate part of the band. It’s not common to see a five-piece horn section on stage in local clubs, and that can come with it’s own logistical nuances. But for Augie, it’s all about the sound, and Augie loves the sound of horns! With all these musicians playing on the same stage, it limits the venues where they can play live. As any musician will confirm, many clubs in San Diego have stages that barely qualify as a drum riser. So these venues are out of the question. Luckily, their reputation for putting on an electric performance has earned them notoriety with some of the bigger clubs in town. I was able to talk one on one with Augie and ask a few questions to get to the core of what makes him and his band click. Do you remember your first gig? Our first gig was probably at like Tio Leos or Blue Agave or something. We learned very quickly that there were very few stages in town that would fit a 10 or 12 piece act. So we started acquiring extensions and risers just so it wouldn’t look ridiculous with two-thirds the band on the floor in most places. That’s still a challenge, even at 4th and B which is a big stage. Sure, if we cut the band down to 7 or 8 we’d fit way more places and even make more money. But after hearing what it’s like with this many good players, it’s really hard to go back. What classic horn section style rock bands do you admire? It’s funny, when you ask what classic horn rock bands we like the answer is none that I can think of. Most of em, like Chicago or whatever, I really cant stand at all. But I LOVE the 60’s soul acts with horns like Aretha’s band, Etta James band, and Janis Joplin's act when they tuned their guitars and had horns. That shit wails! Also, Merk and I, Steve (bass player) and Eric (drummer) are 70s and 80s hard rock fanatics. Big Monster beats and Huge groves like Led Zep and (old) Aerosmith. So what we’re doing here is mostly some mesh of all that. If feels like fresh new territory so we friggin' love it. When everyone’s there, and a new tune comes together - it’s pretty incredible.

The Dirty Birdz and the Horn Starz got together for a very rare group shot. (top row) Bob Conrad, Steve Thurston, Augie Scalzitti, Mercedes Scalzitti, Ronny Jones. (bottom row) Darren Conway, Erick Manchaca, Kim Musser & Cassie Bowerman. (bottom Center) Steve Ebner. (smaller photos from top) Mercedes let's the Horn Starz do their thing. Augie, Erick and Steve jam out in the "Bird's Nest". Guitarist Ronny and Augie are fellow veterans of the San Diego '80s metal scene - photos by Vince Meehan

How did you and Mercedes meet? The band was already in existence, although in a different form, since the 1980s. Vamp, the name from then until a year or two ago, was always a marriage attempt of heavy rock, rhythm and blues, and soul. Mercedes was a few years younger than me and would see the act at parties and such. Somehow when we started dating in the late 90s she was able to finagle her way into the lead singing role. That’s when we added horns and back up singers too. It sounded amazing to us right away. It was the blend I was shooting for and she was a natural soul singer. Any big plans for 2012? We would love to play out more than we do, which is just a few times a year. The trouble is, it’s really tough to find dates where everyone is available. Most of these guys are terrific players and play in other acts that make money. When you throw in their careers, families and vacations, well, forget about it!. Lately, we started having substitutes for certain shows where guys are unavailable. The subs are great musicians and do an amazing job, but I always miss my regular guys. But this year we’re gonna buckle down and do some good solid recording. Everything we’ve recorded up till now had to be finished in a day, so I think we could make a really cool sounding compilation if we took our time. Speaking of recording, The Birdz are currently working with Trent Slatton as a producer. Trent has worked with Death Row Records, Tupac, The Ramones and even Rod Stewart. Trent did live sound for the Birdz in the early days because Augie did not trust the house sound guy to give the job one hundred percent. Most musicians will tell you that if you have a big show, you’re better off hiring your own sound guy who is familiar with the band. And when you have a horn section and back-up singers, it becomes critical The thing that stands out about the band is the passion for music that they all share Recently, this passion also earned them the respect of Vince, the manager of 4th & B, who offered them an opening slot for a show featuring members of Oingo Boingo. Dirty Birdz & the Horn Starz also recently played the San Diego Pridefest with acts such as Salt-N-Pepa and Frenchie Davis. Augie is adamant about giving props to the members of his band. Says Augie, “The thing I love about the horn players, Robert Conrad (trumpet) Darren Conway (Trombone) as well as Anthony Sarin and Andy Zahurak (saxophones) is that they are all great players. I have played with many who were not as good and it was much different. (a pain in the ass!) These guys are special. And as for our back-up singers Kim Musser and Cassie Bowerman, these two have really stepped up to the plate and made the band that much stronger. When it comes down to it, this is not just a band, it has become a family.” Dirty Birdz and the Horn Starz currently have tracks available on FaceBook and iTunes. Read more about Dirty Birdz & the Horn Starz at:

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Vinnie's — August 19, 2011


Pinot Grigio - North vs. East

San Diego Lore by Vince Meehan

Back in high school, I had a buddy who liked to take his truck offroading in the hills east of Miramar. Back in those days, there were huge firebreaks bulldozed into those hills that served as our rocky freeways to adventure. One day we spied a large building sitting by itself off towards Mt. Laguna. We decided to try and get there which we eventually did. What we found shocked us. The large two story military-style building was completely torn apart on the inside. Downstairs had one long hall down the middle with no windows so you could not see inside the dark rooms even at high noon. There was a staircase at each end of the hall which took you to one large open room with huge windows covered with thrashed Venetian blinds. It looked like something horrible happened suddenly and everybody got out of there quick. Large drawing tables still had pencils, drawings, and cups of coffee left as they were. The destruction looked as if some powerful being rampaged the building in a fit of wrath. We named the place Death House and a standing $100 bet was for anyone to enter it at night. Nobody ever did.


while back, Pinot Grigio had a well deserved reputation as a weak and feeble wine. The joke was, that it tasted like "wine-flavored water". Italy used to crank out inferior wines to it's former liberators here in America, who didn't know any better. Lots of GIs returned home with stories of Pinot Grigio and Chianti, and bought whatever was shipped to the U.S. Thus was born the god-awful "basket-bottle" Chianti that still plagues us today. But recently, Italy went of a soul-searching campaign to bump up the quality of it's wine to great success. This gave birth to Chianti Classico, which is the direct result of the bad-mouthing that Italy endured for a while. And Pinot Grigio had the same reputation of a sub-standard wine. That has changed now, with Pinot Grigios being more full-bodied and fragrant. Still, a Pinot Grigio is going to be on the tart side without a bit of sweetness. That is the nature of the wine, dry but very refreshing on a sunny afternoon. Don't expect any fruit, tropical or not, you will instead get a citrus front with a mineral finish. Nothing really complex about a Pinot Grigio, but like I said, that is the nature of the wine. Pinot Grigios are usually associated with the Venezia region of Italy where they scowl at you for ordering anything else for lunch. But as for me, I discovered that if you look hard enough, you can find a Pinot Grigio from Trentino which is up north. This area reminds me of San Bernardino with higher mountains, and the summer heat produces a richer and bolder Pinot Grigio that I prefer over Venezia.

A Domani!

Mission Valley News - August 2011  
Mission Valley News - August 2011