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›› LETTERS Now Italians pack their groceries in giant tubes of cannelloni... I used to consider Marin County a progressive, environmentally conscious place. I just read that Italy has decided to ban the plastic bag to help the environment, as many other locations have done (including San Francisco). I guess I have to re-think my opinion of Marin. Paul Smith, Mill Valley
Bet she’d also unmask the Lone Ranger if given half a chance! Nikki’s visit with Santa, 1968.
Regarding Nikki Silverstein’s Single in the Suburbs column [“Christmas? Bubkes Humbug!” Dec. 24] in which she fondly reminisces about growing up Jewish during Christmas and pulling down Santa’s beard at the mall. There are some Jewish people who, for some pathetic reason, take pride in and derive pleasure from, ripping off Santa’s beard— thereby ruining Christmas for a number of small children and their families. A lump of coal and a big fat zero to these sorry miserable excuses for human beings—right, Ms. Conscience of Marin? (Lest this be perceived as an anti-Semitic rant—I had many Jewish friends in high school; they would come to our house to be able to eat Chesapeake Bay blue crab; later, I was the only gentile in ZBT at the U of Maryland—fear the turtle!). Maybe, Zero, your mission in life should be visiting malls
and ripping off as many Santas’ beards as possible during the holiday season—“If my f--ing parents won’t let me celebrate Christmas, well, goddammit, them f---ing Christian kids ain’t gonna enjoy it either.” Then there are the Christmas nativity scenes displayed on some church grounds—“How dare these Christian scum exploit this donkey, this calf, this sheep to further their bulls--t, mythological, Christian belief system!” (Truth be told, I do question how a virgin birth might be explained, other than in reptiles and some ﬁshes?) Liberate those innocent, defenseless, exploited animals! Now there’s a whole new mission for your correspondent’s lack of depth and reﬂection. Then there’s the Easter Bunny—whole lot of things your correspondent might have the opportunity to correct. And instead of hiding in the grass and peeking in on unsuspecting, innocent citizens, maybe your correspondent could get one of those Barbie dolls with the hidden camera, give it to the unsuspecting grandchild—wouldn’t this introduce whole new voyeuristic and intrusive (scurrilous) elements into your otherwise mundane, banal and cheap/voyeuristic column/life? The creeps would come ﬂocking in, and you could make a s--tload of cash without the whining—better able to support that Little Willow lifestyle. How about a website: “Santa Claus_EasterBunny_virginbirth=bulls-t(+childporn).com.” Find some kindred spirits there, right darlin’? Richard Huber, Novato
‘Why are the elves drinking?’ Can I nominate the Paciﬁc Sun editorial staff for a Zero award? The Dec. 24 cover depicts our family’s favorite Christmas cartoon
TOP POSTINGS THIS WEEK
Bridge toll takers on chopping block For whom the bridge tolls? It may not be tolling at all come 2013—at least not in real time, as a proposal to axe all 32 toll-taker positions will come before the bridge... PG&E, SMART Meters and Republicans Republicans like to give free reign to corporations. And it sounds good; like a kind of freedom. Corporations like PG&E get so powerful and greedy that they lose sight of bein...
Your soapbox is waiting at ›› paciﬁcsun.com characters as drunken bar patrons. Rudolph, the Heat Miser, Hermey the Elf, Yukon Cornelius and the toys from the Island of Lost Toys are all clearly drunk in a (presumably Marin) bar. Even Santa Claus is passed out in his own vomit. The cover story by Matthew Stafford is promoting Marin bars. Fair enough to promote Marin establishments. But why use these cartoon characters? I wouldn’t have even noticed this cover if my 8-year-old niece hadn’t pointed it out to me on the newsstand. “Aunt Liz, look at this picture! They look weird!” Watching these shows are beloved Christmas traditions in our home. Thanks to this cover, I had to have an awkward conversation with my niece. “Why would an artist draw that? Why are the elves drinking? Why would they put it on their magazine?” All good questions. I love a good spoof, and I can appreciate the humor in this. But, the Paciﬁc Sun needs to remember that it is distributed on newsstands that kids walk by every day. If my niece noticed it, how many other kids did too? Liza Stuhlbarg, Larkspur
Technically speaking, Rudolph is Santa’s designated driver... The offending image.
Marin Institute was very distressed to see the cartoon cover of your Dec. 24 edition promoting Marin bars. Young people are already drowning in inappropriate alcohol messaging and targeting. Why would you knowingly expose them to what is basically a cartoon advertisement for Big Alcohol and alcohol abuse on the cover of the Paciﬁc Sun? Research has shown that Marin youth drink at higher rates than their peers in the Bay Area and across California. And often with tragic results—such as the recent fatal car crash in Novato caused by a drunk teen.
Unfortunately, Marin has had several tragedies in the past few years involving underage drinking. Your Dec. 24 cover, depicting beloved Christmas cartoon characters including Santa and Rudolph in varying stages of drunkenness in a bar was not cute or funny. And the fact that you put it right on the cover—where thousands of Marin’s kids can see it on a newsstand—is downright irresponsible. Alcohol messaging is already the wallpaper in our children’s lives. And, whether or not a young person can recall consciously seeing an image or hearing an ad doesn’t matter. More exposure to images depicting drinking equals more underage drinking. Big Alcohol knows this and is extremely adept at reaching our kids. They certainly didn’t need help from the Paciﬁc Sun in pushing their products. A community paper like the Paciﬁc Sun should deﬁnitely know better. Michael J. Scippa, public affairs director, Marin Institute
Editor’s note: Thanks for writing, Liza and Michael. We’re thankful there are folks in Marin passionate enough to speak up about the dangers of underage drinking. The Paciﬁc Sun has written extensively about Marin’s high teen-drinking rates over the years and has made every effort to cover the issue with the thoughtfulness and gravity it deserves. That being said, the cover in question has nothing to do with teen drinking—it’s a story about the plethora of local taverns that Marinites can visit over the holidays to toast the New Year. The characters depicted in the illustration are all adults—be it elf, ungulate, yeti, prospector, snowman, misﬁt toy or whatever it is the Heat and Snow misers are supposed to be—and we ﬁnd nothing unreasonable or immoral about the possibility that they might bend their elbows a few times once their seasonal responsibilities are completed. The characters in question, we add, are baby boomer icons from the Rankin/ Bass stop-motion TV specials of the 1960s— the only demographic this cover may lead to the arms of Big Alcohol are county 45-yearolds, though from what we’ve seen, the two have already been close companions for quite some time...
Put your stamp on the letters to the editor at ›› paciﬁcsun.com JANUARY 13 - JANUARY 20, 2011 PACIFIC SUN 7
Path of least resistance Cyclists say SMART shouldn’t put brakes on pedestrian-bike pathway by Pe t e r S e i d m a n
he recent re-opening of the Cal Park Hill Tunnel, the debate over the Alto Tunnel and the deliberations about where and how much to spend on building the ﬁrst segment of SMART all highlight a remarkable trend: A signiﬁcant number of people in the North Bay are riding bicycles for utilitarian transportation—and their numbers are growing. No longer the sole province of the schoolkid riding to class or the weekend warrior tackling Mount Tam, bike transportation is becoming a practical alternative, and the north-south bike pathway that one day will run from Cloverdale to Sausalito is emblematic of the trend. Just as emblematic are the numerous letters written to local publications criticizing the tunnel projects as a waste of taxpayer money that will beneﬁt only a few. One recent letter stated in part, “I have nothing against bikes and their riders, but it seems we should be thinking just a tad about what’s affecting our lives. The [utopian] idea of us riding a bike to the supermarket and work is great. But it’s not reality.” Actually it is a reality for many North Bay residents, say proponents of biking for everyday transportation. But the perception among many that cycling is an impractical, though healthful, endeavor persists. WalkBikeMarin, an initiative created by
the county from the federal Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program, encourages walking and biking. The website, www. walkbikemarin.org, tracks all pedestrian and bike projects in the county. In October 2009, WalkBikeMarin and the county Department of Public Works released a study that looked at the Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program, which is one of four pilots in the country. According to the study, 20 percent of the bike trips were part of school or work commutes. Shopping trips and errands accounted for 14 percent of the trips. And 34 percent were “utilitarian and transportation related.” Riders surveyed averaged one bike trip 11 days each month, and 11 percent said they used their bikes daily. “If respondents drove alone for these trips instead of bicycling, this sample group would annually account for approximately 5,468 additional vehicle trips. Considering the median respondent trip length—10 miles—and the average automobile mpg—20.2 according to the EPA—this translates to approximately 2,707 gallons of gasoline, $8,364 (at $3.09/ gallon), and 52,245 lbs. of CO2.” Survey respondents stated they chose particular routes based on accessibility, directness, separation from vehicle trafﬁc and lower trafﬁc volumes—some of the key goals for the north-south bike pathway. That pathway, dedicated to pedes10 >
›› NEWSGRAMS Payback time for Marin Energy Authority At this week’s Board of Supervisors meeting, Dawn Weisz, interim director of the Marin Energy Authority, thanked the county for its forward thinking and presented county administrator Matthew Hymel with a check for $540,000, which pays back in full the startup money the county loaned the energy agency two years ago. Supervisor Charles McGlashan, chair of the energy authority board, said at the Tuesday meeting that he“was happy to report that we have refinanced the agency. It is fully supported by the private sector now.There is not one dime of taxpayer risk left in this agency.” In addition to returning the $540,000, the energy authority has refinanced its loan obligation to River City Bank.That financial obligation came after Supervisors Hal Brown and Susan Adams joined McGlashan last year in voting to cosign a loan for $950,000. (McGlashan noted that although Supervisors Arnold and Kinsey declined to vote for the deal, they have been strong supporters of the agency.) Three Marin residents agreed to cosign another portion of the loan that got Marin Clean Energy running.The refinancing also clears risk for the residents. “It fills my heart with joy to tell the taxpayers that you are fully [clear], no more risk,”said McGlashan,“and all of us at the county are off the hook in terms of encumbering $1.4 million that was allocated”to start up Marin Clean Energy, which is the first major Marin Energy Authority joint powers project. “Oh, by the way,”said McGlashan after Hymel accepted the oversized check,“on top of [releasing taxpayers from financial risk], the Marin Energy Authority will drop $2.5 million [onto] its bottom line unencumbered reserves by March. So we’re doing everything the critics said we couldn’t.”—Peter Seidman Marin fair housing off its beam, say feds Marin’s idea of fair housing needs to get a bit fairer, says the U.S. government. A review released last week by the federal department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) found Marin’s HUD program needed to kick it up a notch in making the county’s $3.5 million in housing grants more accessible to the poor, disabled and minorities. The review specified that the county needed to improve its outreach to the people in need of HUD assistance—such as holding its meetings at convenient places and times, overcoming language barriers and making sure information is available for the hearing impaired. HUD and its Marin affiliate have agreed that the county needs to better tackle community resistance to low-income housing, concentrate its efforts in minority neighborhoods and generally make its information more easily available to those who would qualify for housing assistance. In a statement issued from HUD headquarters in Washington, D.C., HUD assistant secretary John Trasvina said:“This agreement increases Marin’s accountability to its residents and HUD to carry out its fair housing obligations and document that its programs serve everyone, regardless of race, ethnicity or disability.” For more info on Housing and Urban Development in Marin, visit www.co.marin.ca.us. —Jason Walsh Call off your dogs, say GGNRA officials Move over Rover, let the Golden Gate National Recreation Area take over—at least that’s the message (with apologies to Chuck Berry) officials will be sending to Marin dog owners this week when it releases a 2,000-plus page plan to keep pestering pooches from sticking their nose into other people’s business at county beaches. 10 >
8 PACIFIC SUN JANUARY 14, 2011 - JANUARY 20, 2011
FRIDAY, JAN. 14 Kitchen Nightmares Gordon Ramsay, the cruelly outspoken chef from Hell’s Kitchen, takes his personality disorder back on the road, showing up in real restaurants to berate the chefs and staff. It’s like having your mother-in-law visit but she brings a case of sharp knives. Fox. 8pm. Smallville Clark attends his high school reunion. Reunions for superheroes are just like reunions for anybody else. Most of us show up with a carefully concocted secret identity anyway. CW. 8pm. Critics’ Choice Movie Awards In the pantheon of awards shows, this is one step above the People’s Choice Awards. Basically it’s the World’s Greatest Dad coffee mug of movie awards. VH1.9pm.
by Rick Polito
that downer rehab talk. MTV. 10pm. Heavy This guy is 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs 690 pounds. He doesn’t shop at the Big and Tall outlet. He shops at an awning company. A&E. 10pm.
by Howard Rachelson
1. What is Marin County’s third most populous city? 2. Which U.S. president signed the bill creating a federal holiday to honor Martin Luther King Jr.? 3. How many months do not have 31 days? 4. What is the northernmost country on the mainland of South America? 2 5. What collection of lakes in New York state are named after parts of the human body? 6. The symbol of January is what Roman god of doorways and gateways, shown with two faces, looking forward and backward? 7. Pictured, below: Sylvester Stallone is best known for what two film characters with very similar names? 8. The 50 U.S. states span how many time zones? 9. What physical object used in a specific sport must be precisely 2.44 meters high and 7.32 meters wide? 10. Identify these people named Howard: 10a. Eccentric billionaire 10b. Recent chairman of the Democratic Party 10c. Director of The Da Vinci Code 10d. Singer in the Backstreet Boys BONUS QUESTION:Two of 2010’s top money-making movies were filmed in 3-D. What were they?
Howard Rachelson, Marin’s Master of Trivia, invites you to a live team trivia contest every Wednesday at 7:30pm at the Broken Drum in San Rafael. Contact Howard at howard1@ triviacafe.com.
±ÊÊWould you be grateful if your Internet connection went on the fritz? Steph G. of Corte Madera feels that way. When Vince from AT&T came out to ﬁx it, he discovered a far more dangerous problem. Steph wasn’t aware that the utility pole in front of her home was leaning precariously and held up by a cable line attached to the roof of her building. Vince immediately recognized the potential danger and had Steph call PG&E and the ﬁre department. In short order, crews were on the scene and disaster averted. Thanks to Vince, Steph is safe and sound and surﬁng the Net once again. Now, that’s what we call customer service.
Answers on page 33
² With San Quentin as our neighbor, Marinites take a special interest in what happens there. Last September, a shortage of sodium thiopental, an anesthetic used in lethal injections, canceled the execution of inmate Albert Greenwood Brown. Since then, actions taken by the Food and Drug Administration helped San Quentin obtain the drug. Oddly enough, the FDA claims it doesn’t oversee drugs for executions. So why did it assist in importing sodium thiopental from Britain, knowing it will be used to carry out the death penalty? The agency won’t comment, leaving taxpayers in the dark about its reasoning. Frankly, we’d prefer the FDA watch over the foods and drugs our families consume and let the executioners fend for themselves.—Nikki Silverstein
TUESDAY, JAN. 18 Along Came Polly Man finds solace with another woman after his wife cheats on their honeymoon. If this is what they’re showing on the Family channel, what’s going on over at Cinemax? Human sacrifice? (2004) ABC Family.8pm. Human Prey It turns out that bears in the wild are remarkably “un-cuddly.” Animal SATURDAY, JAN. 15 Planet. 9pm. Meteor Storm An Kicking Bird and Dunbar discuss their venture’s Late Show with David astronomer tries to tax-exempt status, Saturday at 8. Letterman Betty White save San Francisco from a deadly meteor shower, while at the is working hard to become the oldest person same time challenged by the Convention ever to jump the shark. CBS.11:35pm. and Visitors Bureau demanding he call it a “Parade of Shooting Stars.”(2010) SYFY. 7pm. WEDNESDAY, JAN. 19 American Idol The Dances with Wolves Kevin Costner plays a new season auditions begin. For many, there cavalry officer who makes friends with a Sioux is a kind of emotional affirmation. It’s inspirtribe, gives them guns to kill buffalo and helps ing to see people chasing their dreams. Plus, them war against another tribe. In return, they you’re unlikely to ever be as dorky as these give him the food concession deal at their people, which has to feel good. Fox. 8pm. new casino. (1990) KQED.8pm. Nova Scientists debate the practicalities of Miss America Pageant interplanetary travel in The pageant marches an episode titled “Can on into cultural irreleWe Make it to Mars?” vancy with organizers to be followed in comcrossing their fingers for ing weeks by “Do We an unknown sex tape Have Any Friends There or leaked arrest record. We Could Stay With?” ABC. 9pm. “Can Brad and Angelina Adopt a Martian Kid?” and “What’s the NightSUNDAY, JAN. 16 Goldlife Like?” KQED. 8pm. en Globe Awards The The 8-Limbed Boy OK, World’s Greatest Dad that’s just gross! TLC.8pm. mug but with a StarSerious Moonlight Meg bucks gift card. NBC. 5pm. Ryan plays a wife who Iron Man Robert But did the suit take urine samples? duct-tapes her cheating Downey Jr. stars as a mili- Sunday, 8pm. husband to the toilet. tary designer who dons a mechanical suit that gives him superpow- Apparently he has attachment issues. (2009) ers. For the movie, producers equipped Lifetime.9pm. the suit with a Breathalyzer and a homing beacon that directs the suit to the nearest THURSDAY, JAN. 20 I Used to Be Fat rehab facility. (2008) FX. 8pm. Tune in next year for “I Gained it All Wild Animal Repo This is the kind of thing Back.” MTV. 7pm. that never shows up on the career aptitude Bones When a body is found in a socialtest. Discovery Channel. 9pm. ite’s home, investigators must not only determine the cause of death, they must also discover if the killer folded the napMONDAY, JAN. 17 Antiques Roadshow kins correctly and placed the doilies to This week, they are in Miami where all of the appraised items are either pink flaminmaximum effect. Fox. 9pm. ✹ gos or coke spoons. KQED. 8pm. Critique That TV Guy at email@example.com. Skins This new drama follows an unruly gang of teens experimenting with drugs Turn on more TV Guy at and sex. It’s like Beverly Hills 90201 without all ›› paciﬁcsun.com
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Got a Hero or a Zero? Please send submissions to e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Toss roses, hurl stones with more Heroes and Zeros at ›› paciﬁcsun.com JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011 PACIFIC SUN 9
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trians and bicyclists, always has been an integral part of the SMART project for a commuter rail line between Marin and Sonoma counties. A bike and pedestrian path along the train route creates a cohesive alternative transportation infrastructure that will accommodate the current number of bicyclists and encourage even more people to use their bikes to connect to the train system. A recent Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) review of SMART funding shortfalls and prospective construction plans recommends building a ďŹ rst segment of the system from Railroad Square in Santa Rosa to downtown San Rafael. MTC estimates that SMART faces a funding shortfall of between $62 million (an â€œoptimistic caseâ€?) and $125 million (a â€œconservative caseâ€?) to build that ďŹ rst segment. Those numbers remain tentative until construction bids go out, when SMART will know how much construction will cost and the amount of revenue it will receive from sales tax and bond sources. The MTC report identiďŹ es cost savings to close the funding gap; among those is the suggestion that SMART could postpone building one-third of the bike and pedestrian path in the ďŹ rst segment. Bike proponents were understandably nervous at that suggestion. â€œThe entire cost of the pathway from Railroad Square in Santa Rosa to downtown San Rafael is only $39 million,â€? says
The report is expected to tighten the leash on dogs running wild at suchâ€œno leash requiredâ€? beaches as Muir Beach and Rodeo Beach, as well as other recreation areas such as Oakwood Valley Road, Alta Avenue and Homestead Valley. Since 2005, dogs have been allowed to simply be underâ€œvoice commandâ€?by owners at these areas, but complaints of aggression toward children and other pets, as well as damage to wildlife areas, has forced the GGNRA to rethink its strategy.â€”JW
Bell tolling for toll takers? Howâ€˜bout for whom theâ€œbridgeâ€?tolls? It may not be tolling at all come 2013â€”at least not in real time, as a proposal to ax all 32 toll-taker positions will come before the bridge districtâ€™s finance committee this month. If the plan is eventually approved by the board at its Jan. 28 meeting, it would mean that by December 2012, all tolls would be charged electronically by FasTrak ($5) or by mail ($6), after cameras photograph a vehicleâ€™s license plate. The move would be an attempt to alleviate a nearly $90 million budget deficit thatâ€™s occurred due to the recession and the rebuilding costs of Doyle Drive.Toll takers earn between $48,000 and $54,000; the elimination of those positions would save about $16 million over the course of a decade.â€”JW Terrorism... or textilism? Dharma Trading Company in San Rafael fell victim to aâ€œyarn bombâ€?last week, when a sign pole and a bike rack were strapped to a rainbow of colorful fibers, which burst onto the West End of Fourth Street on Dec. 29.Taking credit for the knit-and-run was a group calling itself Streetcolors. In a statement to the press, the groupâ€™s unnamed leader described how she and her assistant,â€œThe Russian,â€?weaved past the authorities to carry out their latest in a string of incidents: â€œAt Dharma Trading there was a pole next to a little bike rack and we covered them both with knitting,â€?she wrote.â€œItâ€™s great to put knitting in front of a knitting store!â€? Following the sew-cessfulâ€œbombing,â€?the crafty embroidabombers rendezvoused at Royal Grounds for hot chocolate and peanut butter cookies. Denying any involvement with the group, Dharma Trading manager Karen claims to know who they are, but refused to reveal their identities to the Sun.â€”JW
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Deb Hubsmith, advocacy director at the Marin County Bicycle Coalition (MCBC). â€œThe cost for the [ďŹ rst phase] project, end to end, is $395 million, before they added on an extra [estimated $38 million to $46 million] to get it to downtown San Rafael. So the bike path is less than 10 percent of the total cost of the project.â€? Bike advocates in both counties say many people voted for the quarter-cent sales tax hike to fund SMART because of the bike and pedestrian path. â€œThereâ€™s always been a commitment from SMART for the pathway,â€? says Hubsmith. The bike community remains ready to help SMART identify and secure additional funds should they become available for bike projects that could tie into SMARTâ€”and reduce the funding burden for the rail agency. To some degree, thatâ€™s already happened. The 37 miles of pathway between Santa Rosa and San Rafael includes â€œmore than 10 miles of pathway facilities that will not be built or maintained by SMART, and are not included in the $39 millionâ€? cost estimate for the pathway, according to MCBCâ€™s 10point list of principles for the SMART train and pathway project. In addition, a segment of path in San Rafael, the Puerto Suello Hill Pathway that recently opened, is a Transportation Authority of Marin project that San Rafael will maintain. And an 8-mile section of pathway along the Marin-Sono-
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ma Narrows will not fall on the SMART balance sheet. Those and other projects, such as the Transit Center pathway in San Rafael, bring â€œthe total cost of the 37-mile pathway to $59 million,â€? according to the statement of principles. That additional $20 million cost is being borne by agencies other than SMART. The bike community already has contributed its fair share. But the wider point that Hubsmith and others make is that SMART is an integrated system, not just a train line with a pedestrian and bike pathway add-on. â€œItâ€™s about what we commit our funding to in the North Bay and how we sequence North Bay regional transportation priorities,â€? says Hubsmith. MCBC is calling on SMART to explore all funding alternatives to ďŹ nd â€œuncommitted and redirected funding sources and other cost-saving measures.â€? If, after exploring the options, SMART must still cut additional costs, MCBC proposes that the cuts be made proportionally between the two counties. The Marin portion of the $39million pathway is estimated at $13 million. Postponing a third of the construction as a possible cost-saving measure, the coalition maintains that the hit to Marin should be one-third of the $13 million, or $4.33 million. That means the Sonoma section of the pathway, estimated at $26 million, also should face a possible one-third hitâ€”$8.66 millionâ€”of its construction costs, ensuring an equitable share of pain, if necessary. One section of the SMART project already completed is the re-opening of the Cal Park Hill Tunnel to bikes and pedestrians. Trains one day will run in the tunnel. Critics say spending the approximately $28 million on the tunnel was an unwise expenditure that will beneďŹ t only a few. Strong criticism also surfaced after the possibility of rehabilitating the Alto Tunnel was discussed in a Mill Valley to Corte Madera Bicycle and Pedestrian Corridor Study. The Alto Tunnel would connect Corte Madera with Mill Valley and the bike path that runs all the way to Sausalito. Southern Marin cyclists would have easier access to the ferries in Larkspur, and could use the Cal Park Hill Tunnel to ride into San Rafael. In addition to neighbors at either end of the tunnel saying the re-opening is a nonstarter because it would violate their property rights, others object on the ground that spending an estimated $46-$60 million would beneďŹ t too few people who could otherwise use surface streets. That assessment ignores ridership numbers in the North Bay. The corridor study draws on research that shows an average daily trafďŹ c of 2,567 riders per day on the Mill Valley-Sausalito path and 1,031 riders on the Larkspur-Corte Madera path. And bike use is increasing. According to the WalkBikeMarin study, â€œaverage weekday peak hour bicycling increased 18 percent between 1999 and 2009. Average weekend bicycling increased 125 percent during that same time.â€? Andy Peri, outreach coordinator with
MCBC, notes that the SMART environmental report estimates that about 7,000 riders per weekday will use the SMART pathway along its entire length from Cloverdale to Larkspur; about 10,000 will use the path on the weekends. Cycling as utilitarian transportation straddles Marin and Sonoma counties. â€œA big part of the goal in both communities is aimed at reducing greenhouse gases,â€? says Christine Culver, executive director of the Sonoma County Bicycle Coalition (SCBC). â€œThe automobile is one of the largest contributors. By reducing the need to drive, and by creating access for bicycle transportation, communities can reduce greenhouse gases.â€? Sonoma County bike proponents have been working to create an east-west network of bike access routes to link with the SMART pathway. â€œWeâ€™re not waiting,â€? says Culver. Culver adds that the bike coalitions in the two counties are coordinating their support for bicycle transportation, and itâ€™s a trend occurring across the country, even in areas like San Francisco, where at ďŹ rst glance it might seem counterintuitive. A 2010 bike count in San Francisco shows a 58 percent increase in bike trips since 2006. When communities provide safe routes, say proponents, riders will use them. â€œSanta Rosa is one of those places that people move to because itâ€™s a place they can ride their bikes,â€? says Culver, who moved to Santa Rosa from Orange County â€œbecause I knew this was a place where I wanted to live and I could use my bike.â€? Culver says a manager of the Santa Rosa REI store told her not too long ago that people who work for the company and want to transfer request the Santa Rosa store because the community is bike friendly. To an extent, so is San Rafael. The SMART line would link the two largest cities in the North Bay with train stations that would provide state-of-the-art bike parking and also the capability of taking bikes between the two counties in an integrated alternative transportation system. As for the critics who say itâ€™s a waste of taxpayer money, Culver says, â€œStudies show that in communities that are bikeand walking-friendly, the people are healthier and happier. Itâ€™s not just about this microscopic view of funding [even in a depressed economy]. You have to look at the bigger picture of the overall health of a community.â€? A train line coupled with a bike and pedestrian route will help create a new transportation paradigm in the North Bay, according to Culver and other bike proponents. â€œWe have to look beyond today to see the future,â€? says Culver. â€œIf you keep doing what youâ€™re doing, youâ€™re going to get what you have.â€? âœš Contact the writer at email@example.com.
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JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011 PACIFIC SUN 11
Mr. or Ms. Smith goes to Washington... Locals consider a run for Congress—if and ONLY if Woolsey retires by Ronnie Co he n
hile Lynn Woolsey begins her 10th term in Congress, candidates who may run for her seat—when and if she decides to retire—are positioning themselves in the starting blocks. The Petaluma Democrat announced last month that she is considering making her 10th congressional term her last. Woolsey said she would decide by June if she will retire after 20 years in Congress. Assemblyman Jared Huffman wasted no time broadcasting his intention to run for the 73-year-old congresswoman’s seat if she does not seek re-election. “I’m not being coy about it,” the San Rafael Democrat said in a telephone interview last week. “I’m actively seeking support to make a very strong run if Lynn indeed decides to retire.” Five other Democrats also declared interest in the job if—and only if—the unabashedly liberal Woolsey retires. The ﬁve—Marin County Supervisor Susan Adams, West Marin anti-war author Norman Solomon, state Sen. Noreen Evans of Santa Rosa, former Petaluma Mayor Pam Torliatt and Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane—all said they were considering a run in 2012 if Woolsey steps aside. Supervisor Adams said her supporters have urged her to campaign for the seat, but a decision would be “premature.” News reports have suggested Supervisor Charles McGlashan might be a contender too. He called the reports ﬂattering but said he had no intention of seeking the national ofﬁce. Two members of the Green Party—San Rafael residents Nancy Mancias and Marnie Glickman, who both chair the Marin Green Party County Council—are also contemplating running in the June 2012 congressional primary. Mancias, 40, said her goal would be to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. “It’s important that Sonoma and Marin continue to speak out against the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which are bankrupting our two counties,” she said. Glickman, 39, said her top priority would be to ﬁght global warming by reducing carbon emissions and creating green jobs. “Climate change is the deﬁning challenge of our generation, and I will stand ﬁrm in my defense of the earth, while putting people back to work in green jobs,” she said. The 2012 congressional election will be the ﬁrst under California’s open-primary law. Passed by voters in June 2010, the measure, Proposition 14, pits contenders of all persuasions against one another in a primary, and the top two vote getters will battle it out in the following general election. 12 PACIFIC SUN JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011
“I think the open primary, top-two system is going to reward the candidate who can appeal most broadly to voters, the people who try to represent the entire district rather than individual constituencies,” Huffman said. “And I think I’m better positioned to do that than anyone else.” Green Party members fear open primaries will hinder the advancement of third-party candidates. Fairfax Mayor Larry Bragman, a voice for Marin County Greens, called Proposition 14 “unconstitutional” and said he worries the initiative will muzzle minority voices. “Proposition 14 will effectively extinguish the small-party options open to voters and may be the death knell of multiparty democracy in the state of California,” he said. In Woolsey’s largely liberal congressional district, the open primary might lead to two Democrats facing off in a general election. Another factor inﬂuencing the race for Woolsey’s successor could be a plan to redraw the state’s congressional districts. The 6th District now includes all of Marin County and much of Sonoma County. Several of the possible Democratic candidates, as well as Republican Jim Judd (Woolsey handily beat him last year), said they wanted to see the congressional district’s new boundaries before committing to running the race. “The decision to run is going to be based on how the redistricting goes,” said Judd, a 54-year-old ﬁscal conservative who owns a Sonoma County manufacturing company and views the national debt as the nation’s worst enemy. “I’ve been an independent voter my whole life,” Judd said in a telephone interview. “I registered Republican to go up against Lynn Woolsey. I feel that both parties in the past—obviously the jury is still out on this new Congress—elected ofﬁcials that tend to put themselves up on a pedestal like they’re elitists.” So far, Huffman, a former Marin Municipal Water District board member and a former Natural Resources Defense Council attorney, leads the pack as the only deﬁnite contestant in a race to succeed Woolsey. At the end of 2012, Huffman, 46, will have served six years in the state Assembly and will have termed out of his seat. A crowded ﬁeld of Marin candidates helped Woolsey leap from the Petaluma City Council in 1992—dubbed the year of the woman because women took legislative seats throughout the nation—to Congress, where the former welfare mother won the seat Barbara Boxer held for 10 years.
At the moment, the candidate ﬁeld looks as if it could be crowded in both Marin and Sonoma counties. Politicians who have so far expressed interest in Woolsey’s job would bring a range of expertise and a variety of proposed agendas to the task. A nursing professor, Supervisor Adams, 54, said she would focus on additionally reforming healthcare, including getting access to care for undocumented immigrants. “With my background in healthcare and with my experience in local government, I think I would offer the community of the 6th District another viable option,” said Adams, who is beginning her third term as a Marin County supervisor. Solomon identiﬁed himself as the only candidate with foreign-affairs experience. The media critic, who lives in Inverness Park and founded the nonproﬁt Institute for Public Accuracy, visited Baghdad three times, once with actor Sean Penn, during the runup to the war in Iraq. Like Mancias, Solomon maintains a strict anti-war stance and promises to work to end the conﬂicts in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He believes that trying to end the war in Afghanistan will help him befriend Republicans. “It’s war and peace that to me circumscribe our realities here,” Solomon, 59, said in a telephone interview. “Close to $2 billion—with a ‘b’—from Marin County taxpayers alone have contributed to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in the last 10 years. We’re being depleted of resources for state and local government services. We need to redeﬁne what national security is. It’s not national security to have our schools crumbling. I would argue that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have made us less secure.” Most prominent among the Sonoma County potential contenders is Noreen Evans, who served six years in the state Assembly and was just installed in the state Senate. The Santa Rosa Democrat said she is undecided about launching a national campaign so soon after ﬁnishing a statewide one. “Senator Evans is just getting settled here into her ofﬁce in the Senate,” Chris Moore, Evans’ communications director, said last week. “We literally just moved in the furniture, and we don’t have paintings on the walls. She’s very excited about the position here in the Senate. With that said, she wouldn’t want to pass up an opportunity for an open congressional seat. It’s something that she’s considering.” Torliatt, 43, spent 18 years sitting on Peta-
Will the longtime Congresswoman be in her House seat, or a rocking chair come 2013?
luma’s planning commission and city council, with the last four as mayor. In November, she lost an ugly race for Sonoma County supervisor to David Rabbit. A last-minute hit piece targeted Torliatt for supporting sanctuaries for undocumented immigrants. The November loss, which left Torliatt without a seat, was not her ﬁrst. In 2006, the slow-growth progressive Democrat lost her bid for the state Assembly to Huffman. Asked if she would run for Congress in 2012, Torliatt said, “I wouldn’t count me out.” She said she would be considering the district’s new boundaries as well as the ﬁeld of candidates before deciding whether to join the race. Zane also does not want to be counted out. But the Sonoma County supervisor elected in 2008 stressed her desire to focus on her current job. “Our constituents deserve 100 percent of our attention right now,” said the former head of the Sonoma County Council on Aging. “Rather than looking at the next rung on the political ladder, it’s important to focus on the jobs at hand.” Zane, 51, nevertheless added that supporters have encouraged her to run, and she will consider it if Woolsey retires. However, she pointed out, Woolsey’s retirement remains in question. And it does. Last month, Woolsey, one of the most liberal members of Congress, announced that she was considering retiring at the end of 2012. She said she made the announcement to allow possible contenders time to organize campaigns for her seat. And though the progressive Democrat from Petaluma is considering retirement at the end of her current term, when she will be 75, her press secretary, Carl Rauscher, said, “She may very well run again.” ✹ Contact Ronnie Cohen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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BACK TO THEIR FUTURE Re-energized by their first album in years, Huey Lewis looks back on the career of Marin’s quintessential rock band by Jason Wals h
‘All I want from tomorrow—is to be better than today’ — ‘Jacob’s Ladder,’ 1988
The band—with Lewis, saxophonist Johnny Colla, drummer Billy Gibson, guitarist Chris Hayes, keyboardist Sean while ago, Hopper and bassHuey Lewis ist Mario Cipollina warned the anchoring their glory Paciﬁc Sun about years—was never one the damage sudto follow trends and den popularity carved out a niche could have on a in the splintering— rock ’n’ roll band. and increasingly “If you have a decadent—pop music hit too quickly, it industry as the last can be a self-de“normal” band in an feating thing,” the increasingly confusing ambitious Larkrock ’n’ roll forest of spur musician hair bands, postexplained, saying punk, hip-hop and that the music indeath metal. dustry is such that if But by the end of the a new band gets a hit, it had better knock off another home 1980s their chart-topping days were numbered—and the run the next time up—or it would fade from relevance critics began circling the waters, holding up hits like “Hip quicker than you could say the Knack. to Be Square” and the Small World album as examples that “What we’re trying to do,” Lewis continued, “is have a hit and the band wasn’t so much the News, as yesterday’s news. at the same time do our own little bit—not become just another The band’s last album to chart in the Billboard top lifeless American group that has nothing to say.” 40—at No. 27—was Hard at Play in 1991—the same year That was 1980, just following the release of Huey Lewis and Nirvana’s Nevermind pounded the ﬁnal nails into the cofﬁn the News’ self-titled debut album. The record, to continue the of 1980s pop. Since then, Huey Lewis and the News records baseball analogy, struck out looking. But the band’s follow-up, have been few and far between. Picture This, had a solo homer with “Do You Believe in Love” But earlier this autumn, a reinvigorated News released reaching Billboard’s No. 13; and, of course, 1983’s Sports was Soulsville, their ﬁrst album in nearly a decade. A collection one of the grand-slam albums of the decade. No mix tape of the of covers of little-known gems from the Stax Records vault, mid-’80s would be complete without “Heart and Soul,” “If This Soulsville ﬁnds the band at its blue-eyed-soul best—ﬁring on Is It,” “The Heart of Rock & Roll” and “I Want a New Drug,” all The band’s ninth studio album features 14 Stax classics recorded at the all cylinders with a caged intensity not heard since “Walking unashamedly radio-friendly tunes—and all undeniable master- legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis. on a Thin Line” and “Jacob’s Ladder.” pieces of highly produced pop songcraft. When not recording or gigging in the North Bay, Lewis, Four years as a working band, and Huey Lewis and the News weren’t “the next big thing.” They 60, is often found at his home in Montana, where we caught up with him by phone as were the Big Thing. he drove through the biting cold to a dental appointment. “It’s legal up here,” Lewis said Thanks to the hook-driven energy of Sports and a series of humorous MTV videos that po- about being interviewed on his cell phone in the car. “But the wind-chill factor is minus sitioned the band members as modern-day Monkees—nice guys looking for the right girl in a 15 and the roads are slick, so I’ve got to be careful while we talk.” Day-Glo world of punk cynicism and California phoniness—Huey Lewis and the News had No worries. The Paciﬁc Sun has a lot of things to answer for. But killing Huey Lewis won’t be 14 > become rock’s ﬁrst and only voice for young, urban professionals. one of them.
JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011 PACIFIC SUN 13
The band used to go everywhere together, at least according to the ‘cringe’ inducing ‘Do You Believe In Love’ video.
A very non-literal translation of ‘If This Is It.’
A woefully tardy Lewis took the Tiburon ferry to a gig in San Francisco—while his bandmates waited on stage!—in the ‘I Want a New Drug’ video.
if this is it
i want a new drug
< 13 Back to their future ●
Despite your reputation for pop hits, the band has always had a ﬁerce R&B edge to it. Is that why you guys went to the Stax/Volt catalog? Interestingly, it’s kind of the music we grew up with, sorta—we all listened to
KDIA in Oakland, even though we were from Marin—but we really like that and we do have the horns. We sort of fooled around with it before [on the Four Chords and Several Years Ago album from 1994]; this is like jumping in with both feet. It’s like Elvis Costello—who’d been a fan of your early days with Clover—
Huey and the Hall
Original members Johnny Colla, on guitar far left, Lewis, and drummer Bill Gibson rocked Vegas in May of 2010. Lewis and the News became eligible for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004. To earn a spot in the Hall museum in Cleveland, a performer or group must ﬁrst be short-listed by a Hall of Fame nominating committee and then receive approval by more than half of a stable of 500 “rock experts” who evaluate the nominees based on their career achievements and inﬂuence upon the music industry. While acts like the Beatles, Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones are instant locks for the Hall, most bands have their share of champions and detractors and legitimate arguments can be made about whether any number of bands merit induction. Here are ﬁve reasons Huey and the boys deserve a plaque along the shores of Lake Erie:
While spokespeople for the Hall of Fame insist sales and popularity alone are not enough to warrant induction, there’s no question it carries a lot of weight. The News has sold somewhere around 30 million records, Sports was the second-biggest-selling album of 1983 (behind Thriller, which is the biggest selling album of all time), the band had ﬁve albums in a row reach Billboard’s Top 30. The Hall of Fame makes a big deal about a band’s inﬂuence. And while the 1990s weren’t teeming with Huey Lewis and the News clones, the bandmembers’ inﬂuence is undeniable—in England. Lewis and keyboardist Sean Hopper had been members of Clover, a country-rock band out of Muir Beach.While Clover was virtually unknown in America, it was idolized by such then-unknown British pub rockers as Graham Parker, Elvis Costello, Brinsley Schwarz and Nick Lowe. Listen to those guys’ early ‘80s albums—it’s the News, with a Cockney grit. If the Lovin’ Spoonful, the Dave Clark Five, Neil Diamond, Genesis, Little Anthony and the Imperials, Billy Joel, the Rascals and the Mamas and the Papas are in, Huey Lewis and the News should be too. Huey Lewis and the News didn’t invent funny videos (the Monkees did), but they repackaged the concept for the MTV generation before most bands. Through clever, location-shot, story-driven vignettes the band’s early videos ditched New Wave artiness for viewer accessibility. From Cyndi Lauper to ZZ Top, every other mainstream act took notice. “I Want a New Drug,”“Do You Believe in Love,”“Heart and Soul,”“Jacob’s Ladder,”“Walking on a Thin Line,”“If This Is It,”“The Heart of Rock ‘n’ Roll,”“The Power of Love”... a case could be made that they were the premier singles band of the 1980s.—Jason Walsh
#3 #4 #5
14 PACIFIC SUN JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011
do you believe in love
did with his Stax-inﬂuenced Get Happy and his other early albums [Clover was Costello’s backing band on My Aim Is True, though Lewis didn’t take part in the sessions]. Of course, the idea with Soulsville was, rather than do the obvious choices, go a little deeper in the catalog and do some things that maybe a lot of people hadn’t heard—and turn them onto some new things. The idea being that everyone’s heard Eddie Floyd’s “Knock on Wood,” but maybe not his “Never Found a Girl.” Yeah, same idea with the Johnnie Taylor stuff and some of the Rufus Thomas. It’s kinda neat to turn people onto stuff they might not have heard. What’s the reaction been? Best notices we’ve had in years. I don’t know what that means for record sales. [Laughs] Do the sales still matter to you? It’s really a labor of love for us at this point; we’re fortunate enough to have a career so that we can play and have people show up—meanwhile the music business is kind of collapsing around us. And for us it’s not a big deal. It’s a creative endeavor for us at this point. Obviously we want the record to ﬁnd an audience, but we’re trying to do stuff that we’re proud of, and this qualiﬁes. Isn’t being “good” these days enough? Or do you have to get divorced and check into rehab to go platinum? You never know. The good news is that these days you don’t need to sell many records to have an impact. I mean nobody sells near what we were selling back in the ’80s. And it wasn’t just us. It was us and Springsteen and Lionel Richie and Madonna, like that. We were all selling 8 or 10 million copies. Michael Jackson... I mean forget it. Is that due to the abundance of artists we have now, or that folks can get music for free? It’s that, and that music does not have the entertainment value it once did. Audio is not enough of a kick for anyone anymore.
Are you saying audiences have found “a new drug”? With all the screen things that there are to do it’s just not enough entertainment for somebody to sit there and listen to an album. When I was a kid, as soon as I was old enough not to need a baby sitter, my parents would go out [Lewis’s family lived in Marin City when he was a youth]. And while they were gone I’d sit by the radio and listen to KDIA or KEWB and play “name it and claim it.” So that was our entertainment. That doesn’t exist today. These kids today... pure audio is not enough entertainment for them anymore. They can’t close their eyes and have a good time. Have we lost something with that? Well it’s just different. It’s not better or worse. People used to read books, too, once upon a time. It’s part of the evolution—some would say devolution—of our society. Does that make it harder for oldschool musicians such as yourself? It’s not going to be another decade before your next album is it? Don’t know. The challenge really is creative for us, so we’ll see. I doubt it’ll be that long; I think we’re going to work on some original stuff. The most important thing is that you’ve got to have good songs to sing and it’s hard to write in a fragmented market. What do you mean? You think about that the Stax music was made by Booker T. and the MGs, the backup band on a lot of this stuff—two black guys and two white guys who couldn’t put their picture on the cover of an album because of a segregated South. Now society’s more integrated, but music is segregated, if you will. There’s rap over here, and country over there, and never the twain shall meet. Think about it if you’re a pop songwriter right now, and you’re my age... People expect you to be singing adult contemporary? Look at it this way, if you’re over 25 years old and white you’d better be writing country. Where does that put you as a songwriter? It’s tough. I write now for a market that really doesn’t exist, to be honest.
Even when the Rolling Stones have the occasional new album, it’s bought by diehard fans and doesn’t reach anyone new. And it won’t ever. And no radio station will play it. Take our new record Soulsville, right? This should ﬁt right in there with roots Americana, or whatever you want to call it. But they can’t play us on that station because we’re Huey Lewis and the News. We belong on that ’80s station. They’re not really listening to the music, they’re programming the image. It’s really a shame. And frightfully unartistic. Shamefully uncreative and unartistic. So what can you do? All we have to do is get them to all buy our new CD. And that sounds easy, but it’s not. It’s very hard, that’s the hardest part. We play venues like the wineries in Sonoma, they charge like crazy for those tickets—those tickets are very expensive. People come and they park, and they buy food and a glass of wine and then they watch us play—it’s a very expensive evening for them. But they don’t buy the CD! It’s only $15 or whatever. The CD’s cheaper than the parking... but they don’t buy it. Audio’s just not enough entertainment. You’ve always been a band that’s sort of out of its time—forever linked to the 1980s, but having very little in common musically with your contemporaries. I think we’ve been anachronistic, always. I absolutely agree.
And yet “The Power of Love” is so 1985... Well, those songs were rhythm-and-blues based, really, but cut with sometimes a LinnDrum [one of the ﬁrst drum machines to use digital samples] and sequenced to give it that little modern edge. That was our thing, that was our little production idea—sort of the old and the new at once. What’s a song that exempliﬁes that? Well, “Bad Is Bad” is a little different—a very old school bluesy tune with a hightech drum machine. Those records were assembled piece by piece, in many cases the drums are sequenced, the bass is sequenced. Nowadays we just play live and capture it. Was Soulsville essentially live then? We cut it with a live horn section at Ardent Studios down there in Memphis. They gave us studio B and we put the horn section in studio B and the other ﬁve cats in A, with a video feed from A to B so the horn players could see Billy our drummer and we just cut everything live. Then we’d go in and listen and if anybody had a ﬁx, I’d let them do a ﬁx, but no do-overs. Or we’d go back and cut it again. And we never cut anything more than three times. We cut 20 tracks in ﬁve days. When the Paciﬁc Sun ﬁrst interviewed you back in 1980, you’d just formed the News—and your debut album had just been released. And you had talked
about cutting that album in just one or two takes. And that it was a mistake, right? That’s what I said, probably.
The reason for that is that recording a record is a technological experiment, so you can’t just rush things. So we learned how to produce records, basically, by the time of Sports. And Sports we actually assembled piece by piece. But when we went on the road we threw the machines to the wastebasket and played live. And then we kept improving as a band. Now, we’re good enough where we can actually record live. And maybe there’s a ﬂaw or two, but it’s easy to embrace because there’s only a ﬂaw or two.
Well, you were promoting the album, so you made it sound like it was just what you wanted. You compared it to how the British cut albums. You said they were “more inspiration and Americans are more perspiration.” Well, that’s good, that’s good [laughs]. What happened was a very good lesson. Our ﬁrst record we wanted it to have a You’ve remarked “live” sound, so we that the band’s forreckoned if we ran mation just prior to into the studio and the rise of MTV made cut it and did evHuey Lewis and the erything quickly, in The band is no stranger to News one of the few such San Francisco venues as bands of the ‘80s that not a lot of takes, the Fillmore. and played everything fast wasn’t beholden to then it would sound live. But of course it a clearly deﬁned imdidn’t; it sounded kind of small and fast, our age. Yet, MTV audiences couldn’t get ﬁrst album. enough of you. We originally did our ﬁrst two videos, Well, no one could accuse Sports of which were “Some of My Lies Are True” sounding small. and “Don’t Ever Tell Me That You Love 16 >
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< 15 Back to their future Me” with a gal named Kim Dempster and a cameraman. She ran VideoWest at the time. So we did the two songs, cost 800 bucks. We did it down at Ocean Beach, and it was kind of my idea—the idea was to juxtapose playing these songs where you’d never hear them. Like on the beach. Electric guitar on the beach—it was just odd; do things where they couldn’t happen. And this actually helped us get our record deal. So when we got the deal and our ﬁrst single was “Do You Believe in Love?” the record company, who were now ﬁrmly in back of us, decided that they wanted to get a real pro in and make a real high-class video. So they hired this guy who is a fashion guy and he was going to make us look really good.
I remember the “Do You Believe in Love” video—it was surreal. We were all made up like crazy, we’ve got rouge on our cheeks and the lens is real soft and it’s very strange—all the colors are pastel and he made pastel backdrops, very fashion oriented, visually. That’s the one where the entire band is in bed together, right? Well, we were all in a bed together singing to the gal... Anyway, at the end they played it back for us. And the record company execs and us are all sitting there watching it. And I thought it was just cringe-worthy. It was the worst thing I’d ever seen. But everybody loved it! And
it goes on MTV and it’s a big hit. Why? Because they only had X number of videos to play on MTV back then. They played everything they could get their hands on. So I immediately recognized all that and I said, you know what? We’re producing our records ourselves, but we oughta be doing our videos ourselves. Clearly, this one’s awful—and nobody cares. We might as well be having a good time with this. And so that’s when I decided we’d do our own and just goof. Avoid a literal translation of the song if at all possible, and goof. You mean “If This Is It” isn’t really about the band getting chased across a beach by a shark?
The cover of ‘Sports’ was famously shot at the 2AM Club in Mill Valley.
Exactly. It’s just funny.
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Do you think the band’s use of humor in videos gave the critics an excuse to not take your music as seriously? I think the enormous success and the MTV stuff, yeah. I think it hurt us a little bit. We were overexposed at MTV like crazy. My face was on there all the time. Sure. And I begrudge you that. We’re not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, even though we’re eligible. Are you bothered by being passed over by the Hall of Fame? I feel like we’re not just a pop band, I really feel like we’re more than that. But you know, whatever. Sadly, I feel we’re more that that. But I’m not going to let it eat me up. Unlike a lot of bands that make it big and then move their operations to L.A. or New York, you guys always stayed in Marin. Exactly. That’s the part we’re proudest of, that and that we’ve always done things ourselves. We really have. It’s all in-house. Same manager, Bob Brown, same guitar tuner... and we’ve all done it right there in Marin. Our records are recorded in Marin, produced by us, written by us for the most part. In Marin, babe! Didn’t have to go to L.A.! What made you buy a place in Montana? More cheese, less rats. If you could tell people one thing about Soulsville what would that be? I think it’s our best work to date. I really do. What do people misunderstand about Huey Lewis and the News? That we’re nice guys. We’re actually really snarky. Is the heart of rock and roll still beating? Of course it is. It’ll never die. ✹ Email Jason at jwalsh@paciﬁcsun.com.
Concerts made poss ib le b y Br a y t o n Pu rc e ll L L P a n d M ar i n I n d ep en d en t Jo u r n al . G u est so l o i st sp o n so r ed b y H o yt t Enter pr i ses. 16 PACIFIC SUN JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011
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ell, now I can add â€œinterviewed a crap farmerâ€? to my esteemed resume while checking it off my bucket list. My parents will be so proud. This so totally surpasses my piano recital at Carnegie Hall when I was 17. Oh, and it was such a beautiful ride for yours truly, a hardened and streetwise, jaded ex-Manhattanite, out to Giacomini Ranch in Point Reyes Station. There, I met the founder of the local premium poop operation, Teddy Stray, who is originally from...New Jersey. You gotta be kidding! Jersey? While legendary dairy farmer Bob Giacomini has for decades been composting and recycling the manure generated by his hundreds of happy, hefty, healthy heifers, his son-in-law, Stray, is now packaging it and bringing it to the people with his new company, Point Reyes Compost Company (www.prcompostco. com). â€œLots of guys take crap from their fathers-in-law,â€? says Stray. â€œBut how many buy it?â€? Point well taken. This is the modern day eco-version of the boy who married the farmerâ€™s daughter. Stray had been in the corporate world for many years, working for Warren Buffett, and traveling on various global accounts assisting companies in purchasing closed-loop manufactured products. â€œI had to talk to people in large corporations about recycling and reusing,â€? says Stray. â€œYou had to have wide shoulders and deep pockets to stand behind that. It was a very
interesting time in my career but I also had two children at home and I wanted to be closer to home.â€? So Stray decided to come back to the farm where his wife and her sisters care for the cows that graze on the magical pastures of West Marin and produce extraordinary artisan cheese. Strayâ€™s wife, Lynn Giacomini Stray, is one of the founders of Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese (www.pointreyescheese.com). â€œI had been wanting to do something more meaningful. I was done with the corporate world,â€? said Teddy. â€œI had just sold my other business and I wanted to create a business where I was recycling and closing the loop on a regional level. One day my fatherin-law came down to my ofďŹ ce and asked, â€˜So, whatâ€™s your plan?â€™â€? â€œIâ€™m thinking about taking your sh-- and putting it in a bag,â€? I said. He said, â€œOh, come on.â€? I said, â€œNo, Bob, really. For the last 50 years youâ€™ve had organic farmers and growers bringing their pickup trucks to load up your cow manure. They all wanted â€˜Bobâ€™s Best.â€™ How about we start putting it in a bag?â€? His father-in-law walked out of the ofďŹ ce shaking his head at his city-boy, corporate son-in-law. But the next morning Giacomini returned and told Stray that if he was really serious, they should attend
a “farm show” together. Off they went. Giacomini walked around the farm show asking fellow farmers in the dairy business if “crap-in-a-bag” was a good idea. “By the end of the day Bob had a smile on his face. The consensus was a resounding yes!” says Stray. And that’s when the sh-- began to ﬂy. Touring the ranch, I have to say it was the most organized and cleanest farm I’ve ever visited. The land was certiﬁed organic in 2006 and is a member of Marin Organic. The ranch supplies organic and conventional milk to Clover Stornetta Farms. Daisy the cow and the rest of her BFBF (best female bovine friends) at Giacomini Ranch are pampered and fed natural grasses grown on the farm along with protein and whey (recycled from the cheese production and full of nutrients). They are the “poster children” for local girls made good. Their nutritious waste is collected, separated and aged into a natural soil amendment for farmers and gardeners. The remaining cow waste is fed into a methane digester (how cool is that), which produces enough energy to run 75 percent of the dairy operations. It’s all good, baby! Brown is deﬁnitely the new green. According to the California Fertilizer Foundation, all nitrogen fertilizer used in California is imported. Nitrogen is probably the most important nutrient for plant growth out of the 17 necessary elements. Why import synthetic fertilizer (oftentimes from other countries) when we have abundant supplies of organic, sustainable and locally produced compost right here? Our ancestors fertilized their crops with nitrogenrich natural sources like animal manure, ﬁsh scrap, cottonseed meal and tobacco stems. They knew that feeding their plants a natural compost from the farm would allow the beneﬁcial soil microorganisms to multiply and party like rock stars while keeping their crops healthy and thriving. Reusing and recycling waste in the yard allows home gardeners and farmers to stop polluting their ‘hoods with chemical fertilizer and pesticides. You may be shocked to know that here in the Bay Area, home to no shortage of tree huggers, Prius owners and plastic bag-haters, every one of our creeks is contaminated with signiﬁcant levels of pesticides. According to the EPA, diazinon, an insecticide that was banned in 2004 for home use because it is toxic to mammals, is still found in high levels in our local waterways. If you add compost to your yard instead of a chemical fertilizer your plants will be fed critical nutrients slowly over many months, retain water, work symbiotically with the billions of beneﬁcial underground soil microbes and attract fewer pests. This will diminish your need to buy poisonous insecticides. There are 17,000 pesticide products on the market. God help us. My personal favorite of the three composts offered by Point Reyes Compost is “Double Doody,” which is a mixed blend of cow and horse manure. Yes, the 12-year-old tomboy in me adores the name, and no, it doesn’t stink. It has a rich, full body and sweet odor and an earthy, loamy consistency with tiny angels singing and ballerinas proudly pirouetting in
Donate Your Auto Donald Ongaro, Buster, and our first service truck, 1936.
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every shovelful. It’s perfect as a side dressing on vegetables, shrubs and trees, slowly releasing a variety of organic nutrients and beneﬁcial microorganisms that promote healthy root development and fruit ﬂowering. Then there’s the original “Bob’s Best,” a mild dairy manure produced by all those girlie-girl cows on the ranch. It’s great as a soil conditioner or to break up clay soil. Lastly, my sources on the street tell me there’s a palpable buzz going around Point Reyes Station due to the wildly anticipated, soon-to-be-released, and totally ready for primetime “Mary Jane” compost. This blend is for the discerning home gardener who insists on growing his or her own. Insiders predict this will be popular with the younger crowd. The company’s composts are aged for months on the farm and safety-tested three times for heavy metals, bacteria, E. coli, salmonella, toxic wastes, etc. They’re also tested for nutrients, minerals, organic matter and moisture content, soluble salts and pH for the seal of testing assurance from the US Composting Council. Once they pass the tests, Stray’s team bags the compost. Rhonda Moore, jill-of-all-trades extraordinaire at Point Reyes Compost Company, says they’ll be opening a store in Point Reyes Station soon. “We recently signed a lease in downtown Point Reyes and we’ll be doing construction this month. The store will open in early 2011. It will be behind the Grandi Building, on Second Street, and we’ll sell our composts, some apparel and various gardening products.” The composts can also be purchased from local suppliers in the Bay Area such as American Soil and Stone, Annie’s Annuals, Berkeley Indoor Garden, Cactus Jungle, Cottage Gardens, Emerisa Nursery, Fairfax Lumber, Mostly Natives Nursery, Sloat and Sunnyside nurseries, Toby’s Feed Barn and other stores listed on the company’s website. You can also arrange to bring your pickup truck and purchase compost in bulk at the ranch. “It’s hard work to get this stuff from the cow into the bag, “ admits Teddy Stray.” You kind of have to love what you do!” Hallelujah, brother. Finally, there’s a company that gives a crap.✹
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â€˜After eating curry night after night, [one] denies the existence of asparagusâ€™â€”Indian-cuisine lover Peter Ustinov.
Valley of the daals Taj of Marin adds good korma karma to countyâ€™s Indian cuisine rebirth by Jason Walsh
aj of Marin certainly deserves a long cuts of meat (lamb typically does well with and fruitful run at its prime spot on bold sauces, making cashew-based kormas Fourth Street in downtown San Rafael. a match made in Swarga Loka). The creamy But, for that matter, so did Bombay Gar- spinach puree of the saag ($11.95) was denâ€”the tasty Indian resdelightfully rich, while our taurant itâ€™s replacing in the chicken vindalu ($12.95) same location. Bombay Garwas sweat-inducingly TAJ OF MARIN den opened to better-thanspicy, as it should be. 909 Fourth St., average reviews, gained a Tajâ€™s menu includes the San Rafael; 415/459-9555, regular crowd and even won southern Indian favorite, tajofmarin.com. a PaciďŹ c Sun Best of Marin dosa, a rice-ďŹ‚our crepe award in 2007 for Indian stuffed with meats, veggies cuisineâ€”no small potatoes and spices. Our keema (er, aloo tikki?) in a county of discriminating dosa ($9.95) of minced lamb and green peas diners and quality curry competition. Still, af- was a nice change-of-pace selection amid the ter only a couple of years on the Marin masala ďŹ‚urry of curry dishes on the table. We also scene, Bombay packed up its clay ovens and sampled a couple of startersâ€”chicken pakora called it a dina. ($7.95) and lamb samosa ($5.95); if there was Taj of Marin, though, has something a knock against our meal, perhaps itâ€™s that the going for it that Bombay Garden didnâ€™tâ€” pakora sat on the fryer a bit too long (Bombay timing. Taj has opened toward the end (so Garden made a bad habit of this in its lunch economists tell us) of the recessionâ€”not buffet), but the samosas were decent and our the year prior to it, as did Bombay Garden. platters were cleaned in no time. Those who With lower prices on the menu and the say the quality of an Indian restaurant can probability that county epicureans will be be judged by its naan (Iâ€™m not one of these loosening up their purse strings this year, oversimpliďŹ ers) will be pleased to know our Taj may be in for the long mahal. basil-pesto order ($3.95) was â€œattaâ€? this world. Taj of Marinâ€™s ample single room interior is A few year ago, Marinâ€™s Thai restaurants light and bright and comes with the requisite were the jewels in the countyâ€™s world-cuideep browns, ivory whites and shiny gold sine crownâ€”and theyâ€™re mostly still tiptrinkets that are generally par for the course top. But with newer places like Anokha in at Indian restaurants in America (just once Novato and Taj joining such long-standing weâ€™d love to see a restaurant go for a Mumbai San Rafael favorites as Lotus, Om and Shudra look). Itâ€™s nice inside, but no one will India Village, and Mill Valleyâ€™s India Palace mistake it for the Umaid Bhawan. (A bronze (not to mention the recently opened collective of dancing gold goddesses situBatika in Novato and Taste of the Himaated near the front appears particularly well layas in Sausalito), the samsara of Indian endowedâ€”a twist thatâ€™s sure to go over well restaurants in Marin could be reaching a in silicone-top-heavy Marin.) true state of enlightenment. âœš What was near nirvana, though, were our Discuss the fall of the British Raj with Jason at jwalsh@ curries. For entrees we stuck with a few stapaciďŹ csun.com. plesâ€”korma, vindalu and a saag dishâ€”and Give us a taste of your thoughts at were disappointed by none. Our lamb korma â€şâ€ş paciďŹ csun.com ($12.95) was deemed the standout, with its nutty sauce blending perfectly with tender
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PEACE IN THE VALLEY One of the signature events of the Sonoma Valley olive season is its annual Feast of the Olive dinner celebrating the exciting, diverse ways that local artisan olives and olive oil can be used. On Jan. 22, 15 Sonoma chefs will collaborate to create a multicourse olive-inspired meal that will be served with award-winning wines. Guests will dine at three expansive candlelit tables in the event space at Ramekins Culinary School (450 West Napa St., Sonoma); each table will feature dishes prepared by ďŹ ve chefs, reďŹ‚ecting their individual styles. This has become a landmark event, attracting olive and wine aďŹ cionados from around the world. Tickets are $150 per person, available by calling 707/9961090, ext 108...Sonoma Valley Olive Season runs from December through February with ongoing educational programs, restaurant specials and festive gatherings. It began 10 years ago and has evolved into a county tradition that appeals to growers, retailers, chefs and diners. On one day in December home growers brought more than 16 tons of freshly picked fruit to the Olive Press in ďŹ ve hours to be turned into oil. For more information, visit www.olivefestival.com. PIES AND CAKES AND CUPCAKES, OH MY Consider yourself a pie perfectionist? Jan. 15 is the deadline for entering a contest sponsored by SusieCakes (Bon Air, Greenbrae) in honor of National Pie Day, which arrives there Jan. 22 (ofďŹ cially, Jan. 23). Send your from-scratch recipe to firstname.lastname@example.org and you might see your pie appear in all of the companyâ€™s bakeries until the end of January; in addition, youâ€™ll win an annual membership in the Pie of the Month Club...More SusieCakes news: baking classes. The Marin venue will be glorifying cupcakes (Jan. 15, 5-6:30pm)
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Next weekendâ€™s Loving Spoonfuls event is sure to be cutlarious!
with a session for learning to color buttercream frosting and work with decorative techniques ($65 per person; includes a dozen cupcakes to take home). Building, frosting and decorating layer cakes will be taught Jan. 29 (5-7pm). Cost is $85 per person; this includes a 9-inch ďŹ nished cake, a $46 value. Register at 415/461-2253. GOTTA LOVE THOSE FLAVONOIDS! Sweeten the dark days of winter with colorful artistic chocolates from Chocolatier Blue, Strawberry Villageâ€™s newest shop (scheduled opening, Jan. 15). This is the place to ďŹ nd confections made with no compromises: Ingredients are top quality, mostly organicâ€”including the Five-Star Butter and fruits from farmers markets, hand-roasted nuts and French ďŹ‚eur de sel. Berkeleyâ€™s Chris Blue is behind a growing string of retail shops featuring his wares. Catch some of the bright seasonal specials while theyâ€™re here, temptations like Tangerine (a twist of citrus and dark chocolate), Maple Syrup (mixed with white chocolate, covered with dark chocolate) and Rum-Soaked Currant. Take a look at the choices on www.chocolatierblue. com; 415/380-5000. LOOKING FORWARD TO THE HOMEWORK... College of Marinâ€™s community education program offers some appealing courses and classes for those who are interested in broadening their skills in the world of food. The new schedule includes instruction in artisan cheesemaking, wine grape varieties, Native American plants/cooking traditions and ideas for seasonal cooking. Register right awayâ€”school starts Jan. 31! Search the listings by going to www.marin.edu/CommunityEducation/schedule.html. Contact Pat at email@example.com.
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MEET AND GREET MATT! Sip and sample at a unique food event Jan. 22 (noon-3pm) when Loving Spoonfuls comes to the Mill Valley Community Center. This is a soup and dessert challenge, pitting top Marin chefs in a contest for â€œpeopleâ€™s choiceâ€? awards for the best treats tasted with spoons, as well as awards from a panel of food experts (including the PaciďŹ c Sunâ€™s Matthew Stafford). Among the 12 participating restaurants will be Sol Food, Il Davide, Balboa Cafe and Vin Antico. The afternoon experience for all ages is a fundraiser for Community Institute of Psychotherapy; tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door (children 12 and under, free). Information and tickets online: http://cipmarin.org.
Chefs put their best spoon forward at Loving Spoonfuls in Mill Valley
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Giving YouTube the finger Fingerstyle guitar virtuoso Andy McKee has tapped into something big... by G r e g Cahill
ouTube has spawned its share of over- Marin-based Windham Hill label, especially night sensations, from piano-playing Michael Hedges, as well as ﬁngerstyle and tapcats to 7-year-old ping guitarist Preston Reed. drumming sensations. And Tapping is a technique then there’s Andy McKee, in which the player brings 31, a mild-mannered Kanthe picking hand over sas guitar teacher-turnedthe guitar neck to tap on six-string samurai whose the higher frets to elicit a videos of virtuosic ﬁngerharmonic effect. style tunes have garnered At a guitar-playing nearly 80 million hits and workshop, McKee was COMING SOON led to successful recorddrawn in by Reed’s use Andy McKee—along with ings and world tours. of alternate tuning, Eric Johnson and Pep“I have to admit that drumming on the guitar pino D’Agostino—will coI’ve been surprised by body with his ﬁngertips headline the Guitar Masters how well my music has and tapping. showcase on Sunday, Jan. 16, been received—instruHe decided to switch to at 3pm, at the Marin Center mental acoustic guitar is acoustic guitar. in San Rafael. $20, $25, $35. what I do and that’s not “Until then,” the ex415/499-6800. particularly a real popular metal-guitar shredder says, genre, but people seem to “I was really into playhave embraced those viding Dream Theater, Iron eos,” he says during a phone interview from Maiden and Metallica.” his Kansas home. For someone who spent a decade teachHis music is heavily inﬂuenced by sev- ing guitar lessons, this newfound fame was eral guitarists who recorded on the one-time surprising. “Certainly, I never expected it to
One-man-band Andy McKee is the father of the bongo-harp-piano-guitar-thingy style.
take off the way it did,” he says, “crossing over to not just guitar players, but also people who just appreciate the music I’ve been doing.” To date, McKee’s most popular video, “Drifting,” has picked up 35 million hits. Inspired by Reed’s ﬁngerstyle techniques, McKee wrote the song in 1999. “At the time, I had just dropped out of college and really didn’t know what I was going to do with my life,” he explains. “So that’s where the title ‘Drifting’ comes from.” Why does he think the song has struck a chord with millions? “On that song, I’m deﬁnitely playing the guitar in an unusual way, slapping the gui-
tar’s body for percussive effects and stuff,” McKee says. “But I tend to think that maybe the music’s pretty good, too, so people just latched onto it. “After all, if the performance was all sizzle and no steak,” he adds with a chuckle, “then all the technique in the world wouldn’t have really mattered. Ultimately, it’s the music, not the technique, that people have connected with.” Any chance he’ll plug in again and shred? “You never know,” he laughs.” It’s something that’s always in the back of my mind— playing some really hard-core metal would be fun at times. I don’t know how well it would be received by my current fans, but maybe I’d reach a whole new audience. “Who knows—it’s just a notion I kick around sometimes.” ✹ Shred for Greg at firstname.lastname@example.org.
›› SPiN OF THE WEEK The Complete Collection (Downtown) Cold War Kids This Southern Cali indie-rock band brought its stripped-down bluesy melodies to Lollapalooza in 2006, but the Cold War Kids mostly languished in the shadow of Spoon, the Black Keys, the Walkmen and other similar bands. This iTunes-only digital collection traces their evolution. At times, like on the lo-fi blues-rock number “St. John,” the Kids can sound like Devendra Banhart backed by the White Stripes. Their upcoming album, Mine is Yours, is full of ready-for-primetime atmospherics, but these early tracks find the band in all its ragged glory.—GC
Tune up to the Marin music scene at
›› paciﬁcsun.com/music 24 PACIFIC SUN JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011
›› TALKiNG PiCTURES
So many people cite Jeff Bridges as an underrated actor these days, that he’s actually now overrated.
Ruling the Rooster Local thespian calls Jeff Bridges Hollywood royalty—but he’s still no Duke by D av i d Te m p l e t o n
eff Bridges is, without reservation, tail Hour and A Few Good Men (Ross Valley one of the best actors working Players), Death Of a Salesman (6th Street Playtoday,” says Eric Burke, ﬂashing a house) and others. Currently, he’s preparing to quick smile at the waitress who’s just deplay the lead in James Dunn’s production of livered his double espresso. “Jeff Bridges,” Sidney Kingsley’s sprawling Detective Story. Burke continues, “makes acting look easy, Opening in March at the College of Marin, and let me tell you, anyone who sits there the 1949 play, with a cast of more than 50 acand says that acting is easy, doesn’t know tors and a complex day-in-the-life storyline, the ﬁrst thing about is already receiving plenty of acting. I’m not saying advance buzz, shaping up to acting can save lives be one of the must-see theor cure cancer or pull ater events of the season. someone from a burnFor Burke, the character ing high-rise, but acting of embittered Lt. James does serve a vital funcMcLeod, though a monster tion. It provides insight, of a role (in more ways than distraction, hope and one), is exactly the kind of inspiration. And though part he’s built his reputation acting may be very easy on. for people to dismiss, “As I start to work on it’s something that very this play,” he says, “it makes few people can actually me truly appreciate those do.” moments, on screen and on Burke, as North Bay stage, when an actor gives a theater fans (and plenty Look for Burke’s turn as Lieutenant James truly nuanced performance. of critics) will afﬁrm, is McLeod in the College of Marin’s upcoming I was thinking about this among those actors who production of ‘Detective Story.’ when I was watching True do it well, and also make it Grit. What are all the little look easy. A hardworking things the actors do that veteran of stage and ﬁlm for over 20 years, he make me, as an audience member, believe has split his efforts between electrifying stage them? In Detective Story, I spend a lot of performances in the Bay Area and small ﬁlm time talking on the phone. For the audiroles in Los Angeles. Locally, he’s earned raves ence, it’s easy to not get involved in those for his performances in True West (Double E kinds of scenes, when you’re watching an Productions), Glengarry Glen Ross, The Cock- actor speak on the phone to his wife—be25 PACIFIC SUN JANUARY 14, 2010 - JANUARY 20, 2011
Of course, it was a risk for John Wayne cause you don’t see the wife. But if the actor is doing his job, you can feel that relation- to take that part as well. Wayne had always played a certain kind of gruff, angry hero, ship anyway, just in the way the actor a guy men looked up to as an ideal of chistalks to her. In True Grit, Jeff Bridges eled masculinity—and then came Rooster plays the character of Rooster Cogburn Cogburn, a guy who’d snarl, “I’m too old so well, you feel his entire life stretching out behind him from the minute you ﬁrst and too fat.” Watching the original movie, see the guy. It’s an amazing performance.” it’s obvious how much the guy loves playing True Grit, of course, is Joel and Ethan that character. You can almost hear John Coen’s stripped-down remake of the clas- Wayne thinking, “Why the hell couldn’t they give me parts sic 1969 western that like this 20 years earned John Wayne ago!” his only Oscar for “Even a guy best actor. Playing as iconic as John the over-the-hill, Wayne,” says Burke, one-eyed, alco“was kind of trapped holic Cogburn gave by the Hollywood Wayne a huge boost, studios, by a system proving to many, that liked him to do once and for all, the kind of thing that the guy could he’d always done. act. For Jeff Bridges, It was the same for there has never been Humphrey Bogart any question about his acting abilities. The Duke’s lovable performance in the 1969 ‘True Grit’ earned and guys like that. The studios almost He is at the top of him an Oscar—and a 1975 sequel,‘Rooster Cogburn.’ never let them play most critics’ list of against type.” the best actors makThat said, John Wayne did play against ing movies today. “Jeff Bridges is about as close to Hol- type in the ﬁlm The Conqueror, portraying lywood royalty as you can get, and yet he’s the Mongol madman Genghis Khan— never anything less than an outstanding ac- and it’s now considered one of the worst movies ever made, tor,” Burke remarks. and one of Wayne’s “Personally, I think most embarrassing he’s far greater an performances. actor than his father “You know, it Lloyd Bridges ever must have been was. I’ve got to say, very cathartic for it’s very daring for John Wayne to play anyone to take on a Rooster Cogburn,” movie like True Grit, Burke muses. “I to remake somethink that if he’d had thing that legendary. the power to pick You’re talking about and choose his movJohn Wayne! I’ve ies, like Jeff Bridges never been a tremendoes, then today dous John Wayne Not all of John Wayne’s opportunities to play against you’d be talking fan, but you cannot type paid off... about John Wayne as deny the force that a great actor, because John Wayne was. This guy was an icon, standing side-by-side he had movies where he showed how great with Henry Fonda, Gary Cooper and Jimmy he was, but they were few and far between. “You know what it boils down to? It Stewart. He was a true heavyweight!” comes down to who’s an actor, and who’s Burke is familiar with stepping into a movie star. Matthew McConaughey is a a heavyweight’s shoes, having played a movie star, but except for his performance number of roles made famous by other actors, including the role of Col. Jessep in in Dazed and Confused, he’s not much of an actor. Charlize Theron—a beautiful woman, A Few Good Men. and someone willing to gain weight and “That was interesting,” Burke grins, “playing a part that Jack Nicholson pretty take off her makeup for a role, but that doesn’t make her a good actor. Then you much owns. Every night, as I was buildhave someone like Jeff Bridges, and to a ing up to the moment when I’d say, ‘You can’t handle the truth!’ you could feel the certain degree with John Wayne, somebody who is a movie star and an actor. audience anticipating that. One of the “Those are the kinds of performers,” most famous lines in stage and screen says Burke, “that make other actors want to history! All I could do was be true to the become actors. That’s the power they have. character, and make it as real as I could. It’s absolutely electrifying.” ✹ If I’d tried to do it the way Nicholson did it, I’d have been betraying my craft. So I Crow to David at email@example.com. really respect Jeff Bridges for having the It’s your movie, speak up at guts to put on the eye patch and take on a ›› paciﬁcsun.com role like Rooster Cogburn.”
Friday January 14 -Thursday January 20
Movie summaries by Matthew Stafford
Colombia’s ‘Crab Trap,’ one of a dozen ﬁlms competing for 2010’s Best Foreign Film Oscar screening at the Rafael this week.
● All That I Love (1:35) Romeo & Juliet revisited as a Polish Navy captain’s teenage son ﬁnds love with the daughter of a Solidarity union organizer circa 1981. ● Black Swan (1:43) Darren Aronofsky’s gripping drama about a driven prima ballerina (Natalie Portman) facing an uncertain future. ● Blue Valentine (1:54) A married couple on the brink try to rekindle those old feelings with a night of bittersweet passion. ● Burlesque (1:59) Christina Aguilera as a small-town girl whose dreams of success are realized on the stage of a seedy yet majestic old burlesque house; mistress of ceremonies Cher offers plenty of jaded wisdom and over-the-top glam. ● Casino Jack (1:48) Kevin Spacey stars as real-life high roller Jack Abramoff, whose descent into high-stakes crime and mayhem brought him international fame. ● The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (1:52) The third installment of C.S. Lewis’s fantastical epic about three kids and their adventures on the high seas. ● Country Strong (1:52) Three country music stars embark on a national concert tour fraught with romantic passions and personal discord. ● Crab Trap (1:35) A mysterious stranger appears in a Caribbean ﬁshing village and seeks solace with the friendly locals. ● The Dilemma (1:58) Vince Vaughan spies buddy Kevin James’ wife out with another man and tries to uncover the truth in Ron Howard’s slapstick comedy. ● Eastern Plays (1:29) Bulgarian drama about two estranged brothers seeking some sort of fraternal connection. ● The Elixir of Love (2:45) Donizetti’s comic opera is updated to 1915 Napa Valley by SFO; sung in Italian with English subtitles. 26 PACIFIC SUN JANUARY 14 – JANUARY 20, 2011
● Even the Rain (1:43) Two Spanish ﬁlmmakers try to make a biopic about Christopher Columbus despite political upheaval on location. ● The Fighter (1:54) Biopic of “Irish” Mickey Ward stars Mark Wahlberg as the street-smart world champion boxer and Christian Bale as his brother, trainer Dick Eklund. ● The Green Hornet (1:48) Seth Rogen stars as the newspaper tycoon/undercover crimeﬁghter, battling LA’s number-one gangster with considerable help from his chauffeur, Kato. ● Gulliver’s Travels (1:25) Modern-day take on Jonathan Swift stars Jack Black as an ego-bound travel writer who ﬁnds himself on a mystical island populated by teeny tiny people. ● Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One The young wizard embarks on a do-or-die mission that will decide his own (predestined?) fate and ease him onto the wobbly shores of manhood to boot. ● How Do You Know James L. Brooks ensemble comedy about an aging athlete (Reese Witherspoon), her baseball-pitcher boyfriend (Owen Wilson) and the father and son (Jack Nicholson and Paul Rudd) who complicate their lives. ● The Human Resources Manager (1:43) Israeli dramedy about a Jerusalem human resources manager who’s sent to a Romanian village to apologize for the death of an employee. ● If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle (1:34) New Wave Romanian drama about a teenager who ﬁghts to gain custody of his little brother. ● Illegal (1:35) A Russian single mother living in Belgium ﬁghts deportation by the country’s immigration authorities. ● Inside Job (1:48) Gripping documentary about the unbridled capitalism and
political hanky panky that led to the worst economic crisis since the 1930s. ● The King’s Speech (1:51) True tale of George VI of England, a reluctant, illprepared sovereign who turns to a cuttingedge speech therapist to cure his nervous stutter. ● Little Fockers (1:38) De Niro’s back as the father-in-law from hell; Dustin Hoffman, Barbra Streisand, Jessica Alba, Harvey Keitel and Deepak Chopra costar. ● Made in Dagenham (1:53) Miranda Richardson, Rosamund Pike and Sally Hawkins star in the true story of a group of female factory workers at Ford’s London assembly plant who led the ﬁght against sexual discrimination and reﬂected the upheavals of the Swinging Sixties. ● Of Love and Other Demons (1:37) Gabriel Garcia Marquez story about a teenage convent girl and the priest who falls in lust with her. ● Rabbit Hole (1:31) An unexpected tragedy wreaks havoc on a happy and content suburban couple; Nicole Kidman stars. ● Season of the Witch (1:38) Medieval knight Nicolas Cage is pitted against a particularly devious and powerful sorceress. ● The Social Network (2:00) Caustic Aaron Sorkin-David Fincher biopic of computer nerd Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, history’s youngest billionaire and “friend” to many (500 million at last count). ● Somewhere (1:38) Pill-popping, bed-hopping Stephen Dorff has to mend his ways when his estranged 11-year-old daughter turns up at his Chateau Marmont digs; Soﬁa Coppola directs. ● Steam of Life (1:22) Whimsical documentary look at Finnish saunas and the
male camaraderie they inspire and nurture. ● Tangled (1:32) Disney musical version of the Rapunzel story in which the extensively tressed princess breaks out of her castle with a little help from a wanted bandit, a gang of thugs and an extremely dependable steed. ● The Tempest (1:50) Julie Taymor’s dazzling version of the Bard’s supernatural saga stars Helen Mirren as the exiled, resentful sorceress Prospera. ● The Tourist (1:43) Innocent abroad Johnny Depp gets more than he bargained for when he hooks up with mysterious stranger Angelina Jolie; Paris and Venice costar. ● Tron: Legacy Legendary video game genius Jeff Bridges has to ﬁght his way out of the cyberkinetic universe he’s been imprisoned within for the past two decades. ● True Grit (2:08) The Coen boys bring Charles Portis’s classic novel to the big screen with Jeff Bridges as drunken oneeyed trigger-happy U.S. Marshal Rooster Cogburn. ● Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen (1:51) Acclaimed biopic of the 12th century poet/playwright/composer/ physician/scientist/nun and her struggles with her German Benedictine order. ● The Way Back (2:13) Amazing true story of a group of WWII POWs who escape from a Siberian gulag and embark on a thousand-mile trek across mountain and desert; Peter Weir directs. ● Yogi Bear The pic-a-nic-lovin’ grizzly saves Jellystone Park from real estate developers with a little help from Ranger Smith and, of course, Boo-Boo.
Why would an artistic science-loving nun come in conﬂict with strict 12th century Catholic doctrine?
❋ All That I Love (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Sun 7 Black Swan (R) ★★★ Century Regency 6: Fri-Sun 11:05, 1:45, 4:25, 7:05, 9:45 Mon-Tue 11:05, 1:45, 4:25, 7:05 Century Rowland Plaza: 11:30, 2:10, 4:45, 7:25, 10:10 CinéArts at Marin: Fri-Sat 2:15, 4:50, 7:30, 10:10 Sun 2:15, 4:50, 7:30 Mon-Thu 5, 7:40 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 1:50, 4:25, 7, 9:25 Sun-Thu 1:50, 4:25, 7 Tiburon Playhouse 3: Fri 4:30, 7, 9:40 Sat 2, 4:30, 7, 9:40 Sun 2, 4:30, 7 Mon-Thu 4:30, 7 Blue Valentine (R) ★★★★ Century Regency 6: Fri-Sun 1:10, 4:05, 7, 9:55 Mon-Tue 1:10, 4:05, 7 Burlesque (PG-13) Century Northgate 15: 2:35, 5:15, 8, 10:35 ❋ Casino Jack (R) Century Regency 6: Fri-Sun 11:15, 1:50, 4:45, 7:30, 10:10 Mon-Tue 11:15, 1:50, 4:45, 7:30 The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (PG) Century Northgate 15: 1:55, 6:40 Country Strong (PG-13) Century Northgate 15: 11:35, 2:10, 4:45, 7:25, 10:10 ❋ Crab Trap (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Sat 4:30 ❋ The Dilemma (PG-13) Century Larkspur Landing: Fri 5, 7:40, 10:20 Sat-Mon 11:35, 2:20, 5, 7:40, 10:20 Tue-Thu 7:05, 9:45 Century Northgate 15: 11:30, 12:45, 2:15, 3:30, 5, 6:15, 7:45, 9, 10:30 Century Rowland Plaza: 11:35, 2:20, 4:55, 7:35, 10:15 ❋ Eastern Plays (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Sun 4:30 The Elixir of Love (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Sat 10am ❋ Even the Rain (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Fri 7 The Fighter (R) ★★1/2 Century Larkspur Landing: Fri 7:25, 10:10 Sat-Mon 11:15, 1:55, 4:40, 7:25, 10:10 Tue-Thu 6:50, 9:35 Century Northgate 15: 11:05, 1:40, 4:25, 7:10, 10 Century Rowland Plaza: 1:05, 4:05, 7:05, 9:50 CinéArts at Marin: Fri-Sat 1:55, 4:40, 7:20, 10:05 Sun 1:55, 4:40, 7:20 Mon-Thu 4:50, 7:30 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 1:10, 3:50, 6:30, 9:05
= New Movies This Week
Sun-Thu 1:10, 3:50, 6:30 ❋ The Green Hornet (PG-13) Century Cinema: 1:15, 4:10, 7:10, 10 Century Northgate 15: 12:20, 3:10, 5:55, 8:50; 3D showtimes at 11, 1:50, 4:40, 7:30, 10:20 Century Rowland Plaza: 11:30, 2:15, 5, 7:45, 10:30 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 1, 4, 6:50, 9:35 Sun-Thu 1, 4, 6:50 Gulliver’s Travels (PG) Century Northgate 15: 11:40, 4:30, 9:15 Century Rowland Plaza: 12:45, 3:10, 5:30, 7:50, 10:05 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (PG-13) ★★★1/2 Century Northgate 15: 11:20 How Do You Know (PG-13) Century Northgate 15: 2:20, 7:35 ❋ The Human Resources Manager (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Wed 7 ❋ If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Mon 7 ❋ Illegal (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Tue 7 Inside Job (PG-13) ★★★1/2 Rafael Film Center: Fri-Mon 4, 8:45 Wed-Thu 8:45 The King’s Speech (R) ★★★1/2 Century Larkspur Landing: Fri 7:05, 9:50 Sat-Mon 11, 1:40, 4:20, 7:05, 9:50 Tue-Thu 6:30, 9:15 Century Regency 6: 11, 1:55, 5, 7:55 CinéArts at Sequoia: Fri-Sat 2:15, 4:55, 7:35, 10:10 Sun-Mon 2:15, 4:55, 7:35 Tue-Thu 4:55, 7:35 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 1:20, 4:30, 7:10, 9:45 Sun-Thu 1:20, 4:30, 7:10 Little Fockers (PG-13) Century Northgate 15: 12, 2:25, 4:55, 7:20, 9:45 Century Rowland Plaza: Fri-Tue 11:55, 2:25, 4:50, 7:15, 9:45 Made in Dagenham (R) ★★1/2 Lark Theater: Fri-Sat, Thu 4:30, 7, 9:20 Sun 2, 4:30, 7 Mon-Tue 4:30, 7 Wed 1:30, 4 ❋ Of Love and Other Demons (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Sat 7 ❋ Rabbit Hole (PG-13) CinéArts at Sequoia: Fri-Sat 2:30, 4:45, 7, 9:15 Sun-Mon 2:30, 4:45, 7 Tue-Thu 4:45, 7 Season of the Witch (PG-13) Century Northgate 15: 11:25, 2, 4:35,
7:05, 9:30 Century Rowland Plaza: 11:45, 2:30, 5:05, 7:30, 9:55 The Social Network (PG-13) ★★★1/2 Rafael Film Center: Fri, Mon 4:15, 9:15 Sat-Sun 1:45, 9:15 Wed-Thu 9:15 Tiburon Playhouse 3: Fri 4, 6:40, 9:20 Sat 1:20, 4, 6:40, 9:20 Sun 1:20, 4, 6:40 Mon-Thu 4, 6:40 ❋ Somewhere (R) Century Regency 6: Fri-Sun 12:15, 2:45, 5:15, 7:45, 10:15 Mon-Tue 12:15, 2:45, 5:15, 7:45 ❋ Steam of Life (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: Thu 7 Tangled (PG) ★★★ Century Northgate 15: 11:15, 1:45, 4:15, 6:50, 9:20 The Tempest (PG-13) Rafael Film Center: Fri, Mon 4:30, 6:45, 9 Sat-Sun 2, 4:30, 6:45, 9 WedThu 6:45, 9 The Tourist (PG-13) ★1/2 Century Northgate 15: 11:45, 5:05, 10:25 Tron: Legacy (PG) ★★1/2 Century Northgate 15: 7, 9:55; 3D showtimes at 12:25, 3:15, 6, 8:45 True Grit (PG-13) ★★★ Century Larkspur Landing: Fri 5:20, 8, 10:30 Sat-Mon 12, 2:40, 5:20, 8, 10:30 Tue-Thu 6:45, 9:25 Century Regency 6: Fri-Sun 11, 1:40, 4:30, 7:15, 10 Mon-Tue 11, 1:40, 4:30, 7:15 Century Rowland Plaza: Fri-Tue 11:25, 2, 4:35, 7:20, 10 CinéArts at Marin: Fri-Sat 1:45, 4:30, 7:10, 10 Sun 1:45, 4:30, 7:10 Mon-Thu 4:40, 7:20 Fairfax 5 Theatres: Fri-Sat 1:30, 4:10, 6:40, 9:10 Sun-Thu 1:30, 4:10, 6:40 Tiburon Playhouse 3: Fri 4:15, 6:50, 9:30 Sat 1:40, 4:15, 6:50, 9:30 Sun 1:40, 4:15, 6:50 Mon-Thu 4:15, 6:50 Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen (Not Rated) Rafael Film Center: 6:30 Sat-Sun 1:30, 6:30 ❋ The Way Back (PG-13) Rafael Film Center: Tue 7 (director Peter Weir in person) Yogi Bear (PG) Century Northgate 15: 12:35, 2:40, 4:50; 3D showtimes at 11:10, 1:25, 3:35, 5:40, 7:55, 10:05
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GOLDEN GLOBE NOMINEE ®
BEST ACTOR KEVIN SPACEY
SPACEY’S BRAVURA PERFORMANCE IS ONE OF THIS YEAR’S PLEASURES!” DAVID DENBY, THE NEW YORKER
“UPROARIOUS! RIVETING! WICKEDLY HILARIOUS!”
Showtimes can change after we go to press. Please call theater to conﬁrm schedules.
›› THEATERS CinéArts at Marin 101 Caledonia St., Sausalito • 331-0255 CinéArts at Sequoia 25 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley • 388-4862 Cinema 41 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera • 924-6505 Fairfax 9 Broadway, Fairfax • 453-5444 Lark 549 Magnolia Ave., Larkspur • 924-5111 Larkspur Landing 500 Larkspur Landing Cir., Larkspur • 800-326-3264 Northgate 7000 Northgate Dr., San Rafael • 800-326-3264 Playhouse 40 Main St., Tiburon • 435-1234 Rafael Film Center 1118 Fourth St., San Rafael • 454-1222 Regency 80 Smith Ranch Rd., Terra Linda • 479-5050 Rowland 44 Rowland Way, Novato • 800-326-3264
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›› MOViE TiMES
KAREN DURBIN, ELLE
A FILM BY GEORGE HICKENLOOPER
CASINO JACK HONOR. INTEGRITY. PRINCIPLES. EVERYTHING IS NEGOTIABLE. WRITTEN BY NORMAN SNIDER DIRECTED BY GEORGE HICKENLOOPER
Stephen Dorff and Elle Fanning soak up the West Hollywood sun in Soﬁa Coppola’s ‘Somewhere.’
CENTURY REGENCY 280 Smith Ranch Road, San Rafael (800) FANDANGO
JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011 PACIFIC SUN 27
SUNDiAL ] [ Highlights from our online community calendar— great things to do this week in Marin
Check out our Online Community Calendar for more listings, spanning more weeks, with more event information. www.paciﬁcsun.com/sundial
Live music 01/14: Anthony B Reggae. 10 p.m. $24.50 19 Broadway, 17 Broadway, Fairfax. 459-1091. www.19broadway.com 01/14: Honeydust Funk. 9:30 p.m. The Sleeping Lady, 23 Broadway, Fairfax. 485-1182. www. sleepingladyfairfax.com
01/14: Joe Tate and Maggie Catfish Acoustic favorites. 7-10pm. Saylor’s Restaurant & Bar, 2009 Bridgeway, Sausalito. 332-1512. www.saylorsrestaurantandbar.com
01/14: New Rising Sons with Boudeeka Rock and Roll dance party. 8:30-11:30pm. $7. Presidio Yacht Club, Travis Marina, Fort Baker, Sausalito. www.presidioyachtclub.org 01/14: Revolver Trio, Moxie Rock. 9pm. $12-15. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262. www.georgesnightclub.com 01/14: Ronnie Lee Twist Rancho Debut. Rockabilly. 8:30pm. $12. Rancho Nicasio, Nica-
Pacific Sun‘s Community Calendar
It’ll be ‘shock’ and awwww when Po Bronson shares his thoughts about children Jan. 19 in Mill Valley.
sio. 662-2219. www.ranchonicasio.com
01/14: The Rev Tones Twangy rock. 9:30 p.m. Peri’s Bar, 29 Broadway, Fairfax. 259-5597. www. perisbar.com 01/15: Doc Kraft Dance Band Dance music. 8:30pm. $5. Presidio Yacht Club, Travis Marina, East Fort Baker next to the Discovery Museum, Sausalito. 601-7858 . www.presidioyachtclub.org 01/15: Doug Adamz and Bravo Rock. 8:30pm. $12. Rancho Nicasio, Nicasio. 662-2219. www.ranchonicasio.com
01/15: Lester Chambers’ Blues Review Rock and R&B infused soul. 9pm. $12-15. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262. www.georgesnightclub.com 01/15: Paul Robinson and Al Chan Eclectic acoustic. 8pm. Saylor’s Restaurant & Bar, 2009 Bridgeway, Sausalito. 332-1512. www.saylorsrestaurantandbar.com 01/15: Rent Party for Casa Mañana With live music by Tom Finch, Dave Getz, Vir McCoy, Todd Boston, and Josiah Alderette. 9:30pm-1-
Pitchapalooza—an ‘American Idol’ for writers If you had just one minute to pour your heart and soul into selling yourself to a panel of judges, what would you say? Further, if you were a writer with a genius story idea burning its way through your brilliantly creative mind, could you be so captivating as to articulate it and convince those judges to score you a meeting with a publishing agent? PITCHAPALOOZA offers this excellent opportunity to jump-start that New Year’s resolution of writing that damn book by providing this very scenario. Book “doctors” Arielle Eckstut and David Henry Sterry—the co-authors of The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published—return to their Marin County roots and are eager Eckstut and Sterry have their ﬁngers on the to hear your story. They’ve come a long pulse of the publishing world. way since their first Pitchapalooza. (Held in Marin five years ago, the pilot event was attended by a sloppy drunk man with some serious father issues and a mother whose unruly rug rats nearly ripped the bookstore to shreds.) Over the years, however, the literary duo has crossed the nation, offering pitching advice and valuable feedback to crowds of mostly well-behaved aspiring writers. Eckstut and Sterry have helped dozens of emerging voices in the writing world get published and continue to provide thousands more with information, insight and entertainment. So what’s your story? Pitchapalooza wants you to share it—in 60 seconds or less—this week on Wednesday, Jan. 19, at 7pm at Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. It’s free—but a book purchase at the event gets you a 15-minute consultation with the authors. 415/927-0960. For more information on Pitchapalooza, visit www.thebookdoctors.com.—Dani Burlison
28 PACIFIC SUN JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011
F R I D AY J A N UA R Y 1 4 — F R I D AY J A N UA R Y 2 1
am. $10-20, sliding scale The Sleeping Lady, 23 Broadway Blvd, Fairfax. 450-0110. www.sleepingladyfairfax.com
01/15: Ronnie Lee Twist and the Future Cats Rockabilly. 8pm. $18-21. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Mill Valley. 383-9600. www.142throckmortontheatre.org
01/16: Guitar Masters Eric Johnson, Andy McKee and Peppino D’Agostino Innovative, contemporary acoustic guitar players/composers. 3pm. $20-35. Marin Veterans’ Memorial Auditorium, 10 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael. 499-6800 . www.marincenter.org 01/16: Linda Ferro Rancho Debut. In the bar. 4pm. Rancho Nicasio, Nicasio. 662-2219. www. ranchonicasio.com 01/16: Lonestar Retrobates Western swing band. 3-6pm. Free. 19 Broadway, 17 Broadway, Fairfax. 516-1028. 01/17: Blue Monday Jam Gail Muldrow and Jesse Kincaid, hosts. 8-11pm. Seahorse, 305 Harbor Dr at Gate 5, Sausalito. www.sausalitoseahorse.com 01/18: Noel Jewkes Quartet Jazz. 7-10pm. No cover. Sausalito Seahorse, 305 Harbor Dr., gate 5, Sausalito. 945-9016. www.sausalitoseahorse.com 01/18: Swing Fever “Thrivin’ On A Riff.” Swing music. With Bryan Gould. 7-10pm. No cover. Panama Hotel and Restaurant, 4 Bayview St., San Rafael. 457-3993. www.panamahotel. com 01/19: Prima Vera Band Latin jazz. 7-10pm. No cover. Panama Hotel & Restaurant, 4 Bayview St., San Rafael. 457-3993. www.panamahotel.com
01/20: Audrey Moira Shimkas Quartet Jazz, pop. 7:30-10:30pm. No cover. Sausalito Seahorse, 305 Harbor Dr., gate 5, Sausalito. 8478331. www.sausalitoseahorse.com
01/20: Deborah Winters with Cedricke Dennis Jazz. 7-10pm. No cover. Panama Hotel & Restaurant, 4 Bayview St., San Rafael. 4573993. www.panamahotel.com 01/20: Eddie Neon Blues Eight piece blues band. 8pm. $10. George’s, 4th St., San Rafael. 388-8059. www.georgesnightclub.com
01/20: Singer/Songwriter Series Hosted by Lauralee Brown. In the bar. 7pm. Rancho Nicasio, Nicasio. 662-2219. www.ranchonicasio.com 01/20: The Kevin Russell Projekt (rock) Blues, rock and soul. 8pm. $10-15. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262. www.georgesnightclub.com 01/21: Juke Joint Rancho debut. Soul/R&B. In the bar. 8pm. Rancho Nicasio, Nicasio. 662-2219. www.ranchonicasio.com 01/21: Michael Joe Kirkbridae Hawaiian slack key. 7-10pm. Saylor’s Restaurant & Bar, 2009 Bridgeway, Sausalito. 332-1512. www. saylorsrestaurantandbar.com 01/21: Mike Dowling Grammy winning, roots musician. Acoustic slide and swing guitar. 8-10:15pm. $15-20. Eric Schoenberg Guitars, 106 Main St., Tiburon. 789-0846. www.om28.com 01/21: Mwanza Furaha Band Furaha, vocals; Si Perkoff, piano; Wayne Colyer, sax; Michael J. Ilnicki, drums. 6:30-9:30pm. No cover. Embassy Suites, 101 McInnis Pkwy., San Rafael. www. mwanzafuraha.com 01/21: Tim Hockenberry Modern day troubador. 9pm. $15-20. George’s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262. www. georgesnightclub.com
Concerts 01/20: Left Coast Chamber Ensemble “Root Causes.” Program highlights four composers who have been particularly successful at fusing aspects of varying cultural roots with concert music. Works by Dvorak, Bloch, John Musto and Kurt Rohde. 8pm. $15-20. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Mill Valley. 383-9600 . www.142throckmortontheatre.org 01/21: Julian Waterfall Pollack Jazz piano. 8pm. $15-20. Old St. Hilary’s Landmark, 201 Esperanza, Tiburon. 435-1853. www.landmarkssociety.org/events/concert_series.php 01/21: Timothy Dixon Piano, hammered dulcimer, didgeridoo and native American flute. 5:306:45pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. www.bookpassage.com
THE ROSS VALLEY PLAYERS PRESENTS
The smugly American
Through 03/10: Sweat Your Prayers â€œSweat
01/14: Downtown San Rafael 2nd Friday Art Walk Art, refreshments and entertainment.
Your Prayers: Moving Meditation.â€? Every Thursday. DJ World music supports your creative movement expression among a community of dancers. 6:30pm. $15, drop-in. Community Center Gym, 6350 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., San Geronimo. www.sgvcc.org
5-8pm. Downtown, Fourth St., San Rafael. 451-8119. www.artworksdowntown.org 01/15-02/27: Peter de Swart Sculpture. Lukas Felzmann, photography; Tom Soltsz, plein air paintings. 1-5pm. Free. Bolinas Museum, 48 Wharf Road, Bolinas. 868-0330. www. bolinasmuseum.org
01/15: SingersMarin Auditions For all youth
01/21-02/20: 26th Annual January Juried Show Oakland Museum curator, Rene de
and adult choruses. Rehearsals begin the following week for the spring concert season. If you are unable to make audition date, another appointment can be made upon request. 10am-4pm. Free. Choral Singers of Marin, 1038 Redwood Hwy, Ste 100, Mill Valley. 383-3712. www.singersmarin.org Through 01/16:â€˜On The Townâ€™ Directed and choreographed by Marilyn Izdebski with musical direction by Judy Wiesen. 7:30pm Jan. 14-15. 2pm Jan. 16. The Playhouse, 27 Kensington Road, San Anselmo. 453-0199. www. marilynizdebskiproductions.com
Guzman, juror. Works by 34 artists. Opening reception: 3-5pm Sunday, Jan. 23. Open 11am5pm. Closed Tuesdays. Free. Gallery Route One, 11101 Highway One, Point Reyes. 663-1347. www.galleryrouteone.org 01/21-03/12: â€˜Can Doâ€™ Artworks made from cans or reference â€œcanâ€? in some way draws attention to issues of waste and recycling. 5:30-7:30pm. Free. Falkirk Cultural Center, 1408 Mission Ave., San Rafael. 485-3328. www.falkirkculturalcenter.org
Comedy 01/14: Shelley Berman Prolific actor/comedian recorded the first comedy album to win a Grammy Award. 8 p.m. $25-35. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600. www.142ThrockmortonTheatre.com 01/19: Jay London, David Lew Stand-up comedy. 8pm. Georgeâ€™s Nightclub, 842 Fourth St., San Rafael. 226-0262. www.georgesnightclub.com 01/21: Dinosaurs of Improv Featuring Diane Amos, Michael Bossier, Debi Durst, Dan Spencer, Jim Cranna, Chris Pray, Judi Nihei under the musical direction of Dick Bright. 8pm. $18-21. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Mill Valley. 383-9600. www.142throckmortontheatre.org
Buy Tickets Online: rossvalleyplayers.com Or call 415-456-9555 $15-$25 The Barn Theatre, Marin Art & Garden Center Sir Francis Drake Blvd. at Lagunitas, Ross
Follow us on twitter! twitter.com/Pacific_Sun Plug Into the PaciďŹ c Sunâ€™s Local Music Connection Songs Chants Movement Instrument Play-alongs Mixed-age classes
(Infant - 4.5 years)
MUSIC TOGETHER OF MARINÂŽ Mill Valley â€˘ Corte Madera â€˘ San Anselmo â€˘ Ross â€˘ Terra Linda â€˘ San Rafael â€˘ Tiburon Call Beth at 415.388.2464 www.musictogetherofmarin.com
Instruments for the beginner or advanced player, mandolins & ukes, vintage & collectible guitars, lessons & repairs 106 Main St., Tiburon 789-0846 www.om28.com
Through 01/16: â€˜Roadside Distractionsâ€™ Eric Engstrom, new works. â€œInto the Deep.â€? Group exhibition with works by Susan Brayton, Pam Fabry, Susan Sasso, Wen-Hui Shen and Ayumi Kie Weissbuch. 11am-5pm. Free. Gallery Route One, 11101 Highway One, Point Reyes Station. 663-1347. www.galleryrouteone.org Through 01/18: â€˜Rock Of Our Agesâ€™ Work of three Jewish rock photographers, cosponsored by Marin Rocks of the Marin History Museum Center. Free. Osher Marin JCC, 200 N. San Pedro Road, San Rafael. 444-8000. www.marinjcc.org Through 01/19: â€˜Fall 2010 Exhibitâ€™ Features new works by Judith Klausenstock, Melissa Adkison, Donna Solin and Bob Justice. Watercolors and pastels are showcased. 11am-4pm weekdays. Free. Gallery 305 at TCSD Office, 305 Bell Lane, Mill Valley. 388-6393. www.tcsd.us
Through 01/23: â€˜Nurturing the Creative
The MUSTANG II keeps things simple, yet is incredibly &%,'*". ,))(' +& " ( $/(&!' . % )(0 %*") %$$ "- +'.%$$) %$ $' 1(%),'%' on-screen control, editing, ) %$"*$" # ) &)()%'. "- *')#&#%"(
BANANAS AT LARGE 1504 4th St â€˘ Central San Rafael OPEN EVERY DAY! 415-457-7600 WWW. BANANASMUSIC. COM
â€şâ€ş paciďŹ csun.com/music
January 14 -February 13
Your Backstage Pass to the Local Music Scene ...is only a click away
by John Patrick Shanley Directed by Cris Cassell
Local Music Connection
Itâ€™s kryptonite for a movie when the scenery and framings get too beautiful, and photographerturned-director Anton Corbijn certainly runs that risk with his lingering shots and tracks through Castelvecchio and Castel del Monte, the spectacular hilltop towns in Italy that are the setting for THE AMERICAN. But George Clooney serves up a startling contrast in Jack, the Picnics with George Clooney are a lot more stressful than menaced assassin who lies there in youâ€™d think. wait for a visitor behind one of Castel del Monteâ€™s anonymous apartment windows. Fresh off a Swedish job that ended in disaster, Jack must both deal with any comers and prove to his minder in Rome, Pavel, that he still has his edge. That means an ambitious new job designing a silencer rifle for a client, and no personal entanglements. For Jack, who deflects small-town curiosity and limits his companionship to prostitutes, the job is allâ€”machining his weapon to the highest balance and accuracy. But doubts about the life multiply just as he discovers that his only two acquaintances, Father Benedetto and Clara, are wiser than they seem. For all the directorâ€™s professed love of westerns and Sergio Leone, The American is told in the key of master formalist Robert Bresson, who kept his themes few: Do a job expertly, donâ€™t waste words, trust the mood.â€”Richard Gould
To Plug your Business Into the Local Music Connection Call 485-6700 JANUARY 14 - JANUARY 20, 2011 PACIFIC SUN 29
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9pm-1am | Blues Band
Every Monday Open Mic-Derek Smith Every Tuesday Uzilevsky-Korty Duo
SINCE 1984 LIVE MUSIC 365 nights a year! 4(52 s *!. s &2%%
Fairfax Stand-up Comedy Night &2) s *!. s !$6!.#%
Reggae Superstar Anthony
GIIN Sat Jan. 15 D 9pm-1am | French Gypsy Band
5 Minute Orgy, Feather Witch
MIC w/ Sensative Sean Sun Jan. 16 OPEN 8pm-12am
3rd Thursday Hip-hop Night
NITE LIVE Mon Jan. 17 MON. 8pm-12am | Reggae, Spin
3!4 s *!. s
4(52 s *!. s &2%% &2) s *!. s
Chrome Johnson, Elephant Listening Project 3!4 s *!. s !$6!.#%
KARAOKE Wed Jan. 19 LARRYâ€™S 8pm-12am
NEGRO Thu Jan. 20 BESO 8pm-12am | Gypsy Jazz 7HARF 2D s "OLINAS s
smileyssaloon.com s myspace.com/smileysschoonersaloon
Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana 6 School Street Plaza, Ste. 215, Fairfax
(415) 256-9328 open 7 days and 5 nights www.cbcmarin.com
Lunch & Dinner Sat & Sun Brunch
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Through 01/31: Group Photography Exhibition Images from 12 local photogra-
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the Marin/Golden Gate Chapter of the National League of American Pen Women. Exhibit accessible only during venue events. 7-11pm. Free. Redwood Foyer, Marin Veteranâ€™s Memorial Auditorium, 10 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael. 666-2442. www.marinarts.org Through 01/29: â€˜Skyâ€™s the Limitâ€™ Marin Society of Artists member exhibit. 11am-4pm. No charge. Marin Arts and Garden Center, 30 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Ross. 454-9561. www. marinsocietyofartists.org
Through 01/31: â€˜Mzansi: Citizens of Soulâ€™
Sparkâ€™ Exhibition of art works by members of
Photography, fine art printmaking and documentary film exhibition. No charge. Studio 333, 333 Caledonia St., Sausalito. 331-8272. www. studio333.info Through 01/31: â€˜Quilt Artistryâ€™ Textile art by Pat Dicker, Loretta Armstrong, Joanne Berry and Sandra Harrington. Free. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Downtown, Mill Valley. 383-9600. www.142ThrockmortonTheatre.com
Soup for the R&B-infused soul this Saturday at Georgeâ€™s.
SEARCHABLE CALENDAR LISTINGS FOR WHATâ€™S HAPPENING IN MARIN! t-JWF.VTJD t5IFBUSF"VEJUJPOT t$PNFEZ t"SU t5BMLT-FDUVSFT t'JMN&WFOUT t,JET4UVĂ˛ t0VUEPPST
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phers. Free. The Image Flow, 401 Miller Ave., Suite F, Mill Valley. 388-3569. www.theimageflow.com Through 02/02: Winter Group Show Exhibition of paintings by Phoebe Brunner, Linda Cosgrove, James Leonard, GR Martin, John
McNamara, Greg Ragland, Daniel Tousignant. 10am-4pm. Free. Gallery Bergelli, 483 Magnolia Avenue, Larkspur. 945-9454. www.bergelli.com Through 02/08: â€˜Old Hero Songâ€™ Photography exhibit and book release by Miguel Farias. Reception 5-8pm Jan. 14, during 2nd Fridays Art Walk 10am-5pm. Art Works Downtown, 1337 Fourth St, San Rafael. 451-8119. www. artworksdowntown.org
Through 02/12: Michael Joe Kirkbride Oil paintings. 9am-4pm. Free. Bay Model Visitor Center, 2100 Bridgeway, Sausalito. 332-3871. www.spn.usace.army.mil/bmvc/index.html
Through 02/20: â€˜Mark Chatterley: New Worksâ€™ Features large-scale ceramic sculptures placed throughout the garden terraces surrounding the gallery. 10am-5pm. Free. A new leaf gallery|sculpture site, 23588 Highway 121, Sonoma. 707-933-1300. www.sculpturesite.com Through 02/25: Edythe Bresnahan Paintings by the former art dept. chair at Dominican University. Opening reception 5-8pm Jan. 14. 10am-5pm. Art Works Downtown, 1337 Fourth St., San Rafael. 451-8119. www.artworksdowntown.org
Through 02/28: â€˜Truly Massive Landscape Photographsâ€™ Robert Anthony Prichard, largescale landscape photographs. 9am-5pm. Free. Tiburon Town Hall, 1550 Tiburon Blvd., Tiburon. 435-9880. www.photographica.us
â€˜San Anselmo, San Anselmo-itâ€™s a helluva town!â€™ At least it will be when Marilyn Izdebski presents â€˜On the Townâ€™ this weekend at the Playhouse.
Australian director Peter Weirâ€”of â€˜Gallipoli,â€™ â€˜The Year of Living Dangerouslyâ€™ and â€˜Witnessâ€™ fameâ€”will present his latest ďŹ lm â€˜The Way Backâ€™ on Jan. 18 at the Rafael Film Center.
Music, Dining, Dancing... Fun! FRI JAN 14
plus Moxie [60â€™S TRIBUTE]
&RIDAY s *AN s PM
Introduced by Mort Sahl
SAT JAN 15
Lester Chambersâ€™ Blues Revue
WED JAN 19
Comedy Wednesdays: Jay London plus David Lew
Ronnie Lee Twist and the Future Cats
THUR JAN 20
The Eddie Neon Blues Band
4UESDAY s *AN s PM
3ATURDAY s *AN s PM Rockabilly Done Right!
Mark Pitta & Friends
Stand Up Comedy every Tuesday
FRI JAN 21
SAT JAN 22
Through 03/07: â€˜Life in Full Colorâ€™ Cara Brown, watercolors. 7am-3pm weekdays; 8am-3pm weekends. Anthony Miceli Gallery, 625 San Geronimo Valley Dr., San Geronimo. 488-0105. www.lifeinfullcolor.net
Through 03/17: Baulines Craft Guild Master Show â€œPaths in Studio Craft.â€? The celebrated guild, renowned for its apprentice program presents a group show. 9am-5pm. Free. Marin Community Foundation, 5 Hamilton Landing # 200, Novato. 666-2442 . www.marinarts.org
Through 04/30: â€˜Treasures from the Vaultâ€™ Exhibition celebrating the Museumâ€™s 75 years of collecting and caring for artifacts from the local community. 11am-4pm. Free. Marin History Museum, 1125 B St., San Rafael. 454-8538. www.marinhistory.org
Talks/Lectures 01/14: Mill Valley Chamber of Commerce Business Alliance â€œSocial Media Marketing.â€? Program features expert insights, to help you incorporate social media marketing to your internet business marketing strategy. 8:30-10am. Free. Acqua Hotel, 555 Redwood Hwy., Mill Valley. 999-4089. www.millvalley.org/event/477 01/15: Gray Panthers of Marin â€œSmartmeters and Civil Disobendience in Marin.â€? With speakers Larry Bragman, Mary Beth Brangan of Ecological Options Network, Katharina Sandizell and Barry Smith of the Community Coalition for Environmental Health. 1-3:30pm. Free. The Redwoods, 40 Camino Alto, Mill Valley. 453-1550. www.theredwoods.org
01/17: Marin Poetry Center Presents Marvin Bell Free refreshments will be served. 7:30pm. Free. Fallkirk Cultural Center, 1408 Mission & E Streets, San Rafael. www.marinpoetrycenter.org
01/19: The A List Series: A Conversation with Author Po Bronson Author of â€œNurtureshock: New Thinking about Childrenâ€? in conversation with journalist Jane Ganahl. 7:30pm. $12-15. 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Mill Valley. 383-9600. www.142throckmortontheatre.org
01/20: Buddhism: Religion or Philosophy? College of Marin philosophy instructor
John Marmysz, PhD discusses the basic doctrines of Buddhism as he focuses on Buddhism and the distinction between religion and philosophy, in part 2 of a series. 7:30-9:30pm. Free. Buddhist Temple of Marin, 390 Miller Ave., Mill Valley. www.buddhisttempleofmarin.org/
plus The Hustlers [ROCK]
HAPPY HOUR WED-SAT 5PM-7PM $4 DRINK SPECIAL
01/20: Speaker Series: â€˜The Harbor Porpoises of San Francisco Bay â€˜ After 65 years
842 4th Street San Rafael, CA 94901 Tickets: (877) 568-2726 www.georgesnightclub.com
the porpoises are back in the SF Bay indicating a positive change toward a healthy ecosystem. Learn about researchers who are assessing their abundance, habitat and behavior. 6:30-9:30pm. Free. Bay Model Visitor Center, 2100 Bridgeway, Sausalito. 332-3871. www.spn.usace.army.mil/ bmvc/index.html
â€œKabuki Democracy: The System Vs. Barack Obama.â€? 7pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. www. bookpassage.com 01/15: David Richo Psychotherapist David Richo talks about â€œDaring to Trust: Opening Ourselves to Real Love and Intimacy.â€? 2pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. www.bookpassage.com 01/15: Roberta Price Price discusses â€œAcross the Great Divide: A Photo Chronicle of the Counterculture.â€? 4pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. www.bookpassage.com 01/17: Heidi Durrow Wine and cheese reception and discussion with the author of â€œThe Girl Who Fell from the Sky.â€? 7pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. 01/18: Linda Schlossberg Schlossberg talks about her debut novel, â€œLife in Miniature.â€? 7pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. www.bookpassage.com 01/20: Don Lattin Lattin discusses â€œThe Harvard Psychedelic Clubâ€? which focuses on the story of how Timothy Leary, Ram Dass, Huston Smith and Andrew Weil crossed paths at a Harvardsponsored psychedelic-drug research project. 7pm. Free. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 927-0960. www.bookpassage.com
01/21: Mike Garcia, Shahram Bijan and Leslie Harlib Chef Mike Garcia, restaurateur
in conversation with Jane Ganahl
4HURSDAY s *AN s PM
Left Coast Chamber Ensemble
&RIDAY s *AN s PM
Dinosaurs of Improv
Legendary, Spinning magic from audience suggestions
All shows 21 & over
Readings 01/14: Eric Alterman Alterman presents
7EDNESDAY s *AN s PM
BEST MUSIC VENUE 10 YEARS RUNNING DONâ€™T FORGETâ€ŚWE SERVE FOOD, TOO!
Just a quick, scenic, 45 minute drive from Marin! JAN 28
McNearâ€™s Dining House Ă€Ă•Â˜VÂ…]ĂŠĂ•Â˜VÂ…]ĂŠ ÂˆÂ˜Â˜iĂ€ĂŠUĂŠ +]ĂŠ*>ĂƒĂŒ>]ĂŠ-ĂŒi>ÂŽ]ĂŠÂŤÂŤÂ?iĂŠ*Âˆi
â€œOnly 10 miles north of Marinâ€? ->ĂŒĂŠÂŁĂ‰ÂŁxUĂŠĂ‡ÂŤÂ“ĂŠ`ÂœÂœĂ€ĂƒĂŠUĂŠfĂ“xĂŠĂŠU Â?Â?ĂŠ }iĂƒĂŠUĂŠ Â?Ă•iĂƒĂ‰-ĂœÂˆÂ˜}Ă‰>Ă˘Ă˘