WHY PORTLAND IS “LITTLE BERUIT.” WE PREFER TRUMP TO CLINTON. SUGAR SHACK NOW MEAT MARKET.
P. 6 P
WILLAMETTE WEEK PORTLAND’S NEWSWEEKLY
“I KNOW I SOUND LIKE A SCHOOLMARM.” P. 4 WWEEK.COM
VOL 42/27 5.4.2016
The Good Fight ENDORSEMENTS PAGE 8
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
WHAT WE LEARNED FROM READING THIS WEEK’S PAPER VOL. 42, ISSUE 27.
Steve Novick ’s favorite restaurant
is a Mexican spot that can’t keep its taco cart open. 17 The Oregon Historical Society pledged it would not need a levy renewal. Well, it wants a renewal, and our editorial board suggests you vote for it. 23 A local protester once shat upon a photo of Dan Quayle. 24 Pok Pok’s Andy Ricker said his spinoff spot closed because Portlanders think “ethnic food” is “cheap food.” 26
ON THE COVER:
We prefer Trump to Clinton. 28 We found a fantastic taco cart run by an upscale Mexican restaurant that has managed to stay open— unlike the cart from the spot Steve Novick likes. 29 The brand you know as Nike was almost called Dimension Six. 45 Bill Clinton’s remark about not inhaling marijuana was so much slicker than we ever gave the man credit for. 50
OUR MOST TRAFFICKED STORY ONLINE THIS WEEK:
Illustration by Matt Schumacher.
Andy Ricker blamed ethnicfood prejudice for his inability to sell instant ramen noodles with fancy toppings for $10.
STAFF Editor & Publisher Mark Zusman EDITORIAL News Editor Aaron Mesh Arts & Culture Editor Martin Cizmar Staff Writers Nigel Jaquiss, Rachel Monahan, Beth Slovic Copy Chief Rob Fernas Copy Editors Matt Buckingham, Maya McOmie, James Yu Stage & Screen Editor Enid Spitz Projects Editor Matthew Korfhage Music Editor Matthew Singer Web Editor Lizzy Acker Books James Helmsworth
Visual Arts Jennifer Rabin Editorial Interns Karina Buggy, Grace Culhane, Jenna Mulligan CONTRIBUTORS Mike Acker, Dave Cantor, Nathan Carson, Peter D’Auria, Alex Falcone, Shannon Gormley, Jordan Green, Jay Horton, AP Kryza, John Locanthi, Mark Stock PRODUCTION Production Manager Dylan Serkin Art Director Julie Showers Special Sections Art Director Alyssa Walker Graphic Designers Rick Vodicka, Xel Moore Production Interns Henry Cromett, Gabi McKenzie, Skylar Nguyen
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BIKING IN PORTLAND
perhaps political opportunism [“Bailey, Left As a dedicated cycle commuter, I was happy to Behind,” WW, April 27, 2016]. If you will see your biking-focused issue [“Bikey Town,” pardon my Portland-centrism, at this juncture in our history, being mayor of Portland WW, April 27, 2016]. However, in “Bikes vs. the World,” is arguably more important than being governor of Oregon, and Ted I was surprised and concerned to Wheeler is eminently qualified. see Lizzy Acker turn her music “way up” before going on her ride. Cycling When Wheeler’s candidacy made Charlie Hales irrelevant, the mayor while listening to music, especially and his allies sought an alternative, loudly, is making it more dangerous and after a half-dozen more obvious than it already is in this city. choices declined, Bailey took the bait. I understand the romantic appeal of cruising the city listening to your —Ed Hershey favorite girl-angst music, raging up In a political talk I attended, Bailey hills against the patriarchy. I know had less ego than Wheeler, and I sound like a schoolmarm here, but “You might that’s important to me. Bailey was you might miss the auditory clues miss the that could save you or someone else auditory clues the better listener, his comments from getting injured. were succinct as opposed to Wheelthat could who went on and on and didn’t Give it some thought, Acker— save you from er, know the topic as well as Bailey. and everyone else wearing earbuds getting I think Bailey’s in the race for the during their ride. injured.” right reasons and clearly is qualified. —Lucy Wong Northeast Portland —“byebyepdx” JULES BAILEY: LIBERAL ENOUGH FOR YOU?
SMOKELESS BARBECUE IS JUST BORING MEAT. WRONG.
HOW LEMONADE PROVED ONE LOCAL WRITER
SUMMER CAMP GUIDE INSIDE. P. 24-29
VOL 42/26 4. 27. 2016
Having lived in some of the so-called “bike cities” of Northern Europe, I’d say Portland has miles to go before we begin lauding our city as a “bike town.” Being the most bike-friendly city in the U.S. is analogous to being the best ice fisherman in the Sahara. Once our city planners begin prioritizing direct routing of bikes and safety of users over auto convenience, then we will at least be going in the right direction. Right now it’s just (poorly drawn) lines on the street. —Tyler Robertson
PROPOSAL TO BAN DRIVE-THRUS
BAILEY’S MAYORAL CAMPAIGN
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR must include the author’s street address and phone number for veriﬁcation. Letters must be 250 or fewer words. Submit to: 2220 NW Quimby St., Portland, OR 97210. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The basic reason Jules Bailey’s campaign never caught on is that it has no rationale except
Each morning as I sit at the intersection of Southeast Division Street and Ladd Avenue, dutifully waiting for the signal to tell me that I can safely cross, a little blue light sitting atop the stop light glows. I assume this is not just a light to banish the darkness—it serves a purpose, but what? —Sarah R.
Don’t feel bad, Sarah—that blue light has caused more misunderstandings than my hastily recalled children’s book, Horton Hires a Hooker. What you saw was a “detector confirmation feedback device.” Here’s the deal: We all know that some intersections include detectors in the roadway that can tell whether there’s a car waiting for a green light. These detectors, called induction loops, use the magic of electromagnetism to tell when there’s something metallic overhead. You may also have noticed that smaller vehi4
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
So let me get this straight: Eliminating drivethrus gets rid of car traffic, which is responsible for hitting people [“Pay at the Last Window,” WW, April 27, 2016]. Don’t the same cars have to drive to the restaurant and park in the parking lot? There is absolutely no reduction in traffic. Our city’s leaders have lost it. It’s time to vote the entire City Council out and get a fresh start. They are ruining our city. —“c77”
cles, like bikes and motorcycles, don’t always trip the detector. This leaves the rider hanging, and she eventually runs the red light in frustration. Most people think that smaller vehicles aren’t heavy enough to set off the detector, but the real problem is that they don’t cover as much of the roadway. If placed in exactly the right spot, a motorcycle or bike will set off the induction loop. Why don’t the authorities just mark that spot, then? Actually, they do—it’s just that they mark it using international-symbol-ese, a language that avoids bias by being equally incomprehensible to all cultures. The current symbol is a bike and rider with short vertical lines above and below. Put your bike’s tires on those lines, and the loop will detect you—obviously! How stupid of you to miss it. (In fairness to the Bureau of Transportation, it’s actively working on a more easily understood marker.) In any case, the blue light confirms that the detector has seen you, and will change the signal shortly. Tell your friends; maybe someday this information will penetrate the thick clouds of emoji and cat GIFs that blanket the public’s skull.
QUESTIONS? Send them to email@example.com
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
MURMURS Oregon Lottery Director Colleagues Pan Hales’ Alleges Civil Rights Violation Business Tax Hike
days before his ﬁring. In a draft civil rights complaint Roberts shared with Gov. Kate Brown’s oﬃce April 18, Roberts alleged that commissioners Liz Carle and Mary Wheat created a hostile work environment for an IranianAmerican lottery employee named Farshad Allahdadi, whom Roberts proposed to promote to assistant director. Roberts accused the pair of “conducting an unfair investigation into this employee’s work performance.” Although Roberts is gone, Brown’s oﬃce says the Oregon Department of Justice is investigating his allegation.” Carle and Wheat declined to comment.
Take a hike. That’s what two city commissioners more or less told Mayor Charlie Hales after he proposed a tax hike May 2 on Portland businesses. Hales’ proposal—to increase the business license tax from 2.2 percent to 2.5 percent of net business income—comes as the city collects record revenue from businesses and hotels, bringing Portland’s 2016-17 budget to $510 million. Commissioners Dan Saltzman and Steve Novick immediately panned the idea. A third commissioner, Nick Fish, says he has “concerns” about Hales’ tax, meaning it’s probably DOA. “I think this will be a short-lived proposal,” Novick says.
Fight Over Jordan Schnitzer’s Son Continues
It’s round two in what promises to be an epic legal battle between two prominent Oregon business families over a surrogate son born to property magnate Jordan Schnitzer last December (“It’s a Boy!,” WW, March 16, 2016). In an April 29 response to Cory Noel Sause’s request to be acknowledged as the baby’s genetic mother, Schnitzer argued Sause renounced all rights and W W S TA F F
M AYA S E T T O N
New details about the April 26 ﬁring of Oregon Lottery Director Jack Roberts emerged from documents WW obtained this week. The documents show tension between Roberts and two lottery commissioners in the
Sugar Shack Will Become Meat Market
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Portland Mayor Charlie Hales’ proposed budget is helping a Northeast Portland neighborhood coalition pay oﬀ loans it secured to buy the former Sugar Shack strip club. The group, Living Cully, bought the Sugar Shack in July for $2.3 million from owners who had been federally indicted for allegedly operating ATMs to promote prostitution at four strip clubs. The new tenant will still display legs and breasts: Nicky USA, a specialty butcher now operating in the Central Eastside Industrial District. In exchange for city funds, Nicky USA will set aside community space at the location on Northeast Killingsworth Street.
interests in the boy born from her embryo. But in making his case, Schnitzer had to argue that a contract his own lawyer sent Sause was meaningless. “I did not review the draft agreement until after a copy was delivered to my oﬃce by Ms. Sause,” Schnitzer wrote in a Multnomah County Circuit Court ﬁling. “It was not something that I would be comfortable signing.” Sause, whose family owns a large Coos Bay barge company, must respond to Schnitzer’s ﬁling by May 20.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW THIS WEEK
Goooooooooal! BY NIG E L JAQ UI SS
NEW FIGURES SHOW THE CITY IS GETTING ITS MONEY BACK FROM THE PORTLAND TIMBERS’ STADIUM. firstname.lastname@example.org
Sometimes, history doesn’t repeat itself. In 2001, the city of Portland and private investors spent nearly $40 million to renovate what is now Providence Park for minor league baseball and soccer. The deal was a disaster, costing investors millions and leaving taxpayers on the hook for $28.5 million in debt. When Timbers owner Merritt Paulson came to City Hall in 2010 seeking $12 million in public money as part of a $31 million renovation of the aging ballpark, some observers wondered if taxpayers were about to get fooled again. Soccer fans have made sure that didn’t happen. New city numbers show the deal, like the Timbers and Thorns, has been a winner. The city gets base rent of about $1 million, plus 7 percent of ticket sales with a minimum guarantee and an extra bonus if sales exceed that minimum threshold. Figures released by the city in response to a public records request by WW show Paulson has not only made the required payments, but has exceeded his minimum every year—sending the city more money in 2015 than ever before. City Commissioner Amanda Fritz, the lone no vote in 2010, applauds the results. “I’m very glad to see the prosperity of the Timbers and the Thorns and the enjoyment of Portlanders who attend games,” Fritz says.
Eat Crickets Last month, Portland startup Poda Foods won the inaugural PitchFestNW, sponsored by WW, WW with an unlikely idea for a company: bugs as food. Poda raises and harvests organic crickets in Portland to sell, as a powder, to three food production companies making cricketbased protein bars and dog treats. WW visited with Kenny Cloft, chief operating officer of the startup, in his Reed neighborhood apartment—where he was preparing a batch of crickets for samples at a cannabis event. JENNA MULLIGAN.
$975,000 $671,070 $398,153
$2,044,223 2014 $950,000 $655,772 $374,015
City Revenues From Providence Park
LICENSE PAYMENT CITY’S SHARE OF TICKET SALES
2013 $925,000 $640,920 $321,172
OVERAGE BONUS TOTAL
$900,000 $626,500 $125,389
$875,000 $612,500 $60,653
Tropical house crickets lay their eggs in soil, which is kept at a humid 80 degrees. The hatched crickets are given GMO-free feed made for baby chickens. (Cloft hopes to eventually switch to food scraps as a more sustainable approach.) “Around the fifth week, the males begin to chirp,” Cloft says.
Poda Foods harvests the crickets by freezing them to death. They drop into hibernation and die peacefully. Cloft then roasts them in the oven for an hour at 200 degrees: “a low temperature so that the internal oil doesn’t scald or burn.”
An industrial-sized coffee grinder is all that’s needed to turn roasted crickets into powder. Once the insects are dehydrated, they have a 75 percent protein content, and the flour form disguises the off-putting fact that you’re eating a bug. “As a powder, the insect becomes innocuous,” Cloft says. When leaving the crickets whole, Cloft salts them lightly.
They’re not entirely unpleasant. They have a yeasty, malty taste that recalls the scent inside a brewery. Pro tip: When eating a cricket that hasn’t been ground into a protein bar, break off the antennae and ovipositor as well as long limbs of the cricket’s body that are difficult to chew.
Raise the crickets.
Cook the crickets.
Prepare the crickets.
Taste the crickets.
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
The Good Fight
IT’S BEEN A COMBATIVE PRIMARY. PICK THE CANDIDATES WITH IDEALS WORTH FIGHTING FOR.
BY WW STAFF
n a primary season as fluky and fractious as this one, it’s easy to lose your cool. For most of the spring, Team Bernie and Team Hillary teetered on the brink of civil war. The Republican Party has been hijacked by a race-baiting reality-TV star. The presidential race is such a train wreck, Oregon is relevant. Oregon is also a mess. The Democratic Party controls this state, but isn’t sure what to do with it. Portland’s rash of rent hikes and explosion of homeless camps have sparked screaming matches on the mayoral campaign trail. If one more candidate tells you this city is “at a crossroads,” you’re going to toss your ballot in the Willamette River. Take a deep breath. Fight back that wave of panic. Now listen up: It’s going to be fine. A primary election is a test of our values. It gives us a chance to ask: What do we really stand for, and who can best deliver on those ideals? Opportunistic candidates want you to panic, but the truth is that this election offers no shortage of dedicated public servants, fresh ideas and commonsense solutions. Over the past six weeks, WW has spoken to more than 80 office-seekers from across the state, seeking evidence of independence and leadership. We’re looking for candidates who demonstrate the ability to think outside the platitudes of their
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
party but also aspire to the progressive convictions that we share with this city. We’re also looking to fill Oregon’s competency gap. Too often in this city and state, life is sweet for the political class and its patrons—which means some of them are paying lip service but providing no real solutions for the high-school dropout rate, homelessness or Oregon’s decaying infrastructure. We’ve tried to separate those fakers from the real deals. Here’s how we do that: We invite all the candidates in a race (or on either side of a ballot-measure debate) to make a joint appearance in front of us and our video camera. We’re posting all those videos on wweek.com, and we’ve included transcripts here from five of the most compelling exchanges. We don’t endorse in races where a candidate is running unopposed—so several names, like U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer and Multnomah County Commission candidate Jessica Vega Peterson, aren’t here. As in past years, we also refrain from endorsing in the Oregon attorney general’s race, because the incumbent, Ellen Rosenblum, is married to Richard Meeker, co-owner of WW’s parent company. You may not agree with all of our choices. In fact, we’re sure some of them will annoy you. But we hope they help you think clearly about the decisions you face in the May 17 election. And we’re confident you’ll reach the same conclusion we did: When it comes to Oregon’s democracy, there are many reasons to keep the faith.
BERNIE N ATI O NA L
I L L U S T R AT I O N S B Y T R I C I A H I P P S
Bernie Sanders • Democrat
We know. Hillary Rodham Clinton is going to win the Democratic nomination. She has a better résumé. She is better on guns. She’s been thoroughly vetted before the coming faceoff with Donald Trump. And we get the bonus of Bill Clinton as first dude. Doesn’t matter. We are throwing our weight behind the ideals of Bernie Sanders, the Vermont senator who has given a jolt to the Democratic primary. As Oregonians, we know all too well what can happen when the Democratic Party’s elite is not held accountable by voters. Sanders has single-handedly done that—turning this primary into a marketplace of ideas that promises to have staying power long after he’s gone. And to be clear—we much prefer his ideas to Hillary Clinton’s. Clinton was wrong on Iraq and, as a member of the Obama administration, was hawkish on Syria and Libya. Sanders’ economic policies strike us not as socialist, but as a brave and sensible realization that American capitalism
needs a shock to its system. While some are frightened of Sanders’ call to break up big banks, remember that a Republican, President Theodore Roosevelt, championed busting up companies that were perceived as having too much power. Sanders is on the right side of immigrant rights, climate justice, and the call for a financial transactions tax. And it’s no small thing that his campaign has shattered records with more than 1 million small donors— average Americans who maintain faith that the electoral process should not be owned by a candidate who gets $225,000 to give a speech to a bank. What about those who say that supporting Sanders at this point will only weaken Clinton, who is all but certain to be the nominee? We don’t buy it. As U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), the first senator to endorse Sanders, has put it, presidential primaries exist not just to choose a nominee, but to give voice to voters about what direction they want this country to take. A Sanders
win in Oregon will help shape a Democratic platform—whoever is the nominee—into one that recognizes the real challenges facing working people. It provides that nominee with the encouragement, and even the pressure, to be independent, strong and honest. A Sanders win also increases the pressure on Clinton to align herself with the broader U.S. electorate. Every vote for Sanders is a vote against Clinton’s capitulation to Wall Street bankers who want another chance to play dice with the lives of homeowners, and Beltway hawks who would create more terrorists with prolonged Middle East wars. Now is the best chance to curb Clinton’s worst impulses. She has shown she will throw her influence behind bad ideas for political expedience, power or money. But Clinton has also shown she will listen to the people. The people of Oregon can mold her message—and the future of this nation—with a vote for Bernie Sanders.
SANDERS CONT. on page 10
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
John Kasich • Republican
Do we even have to tell you what a threat Donald Trump represents to American democracy? A demagogue for the TMZ era, Trump has capitalized on a toxic blend of celebrity envy, class resentment and unfiltered racism. His campaign rallies are fascist carnivals, where the candidate fanaticizes about torture and mutilating Muslim corpses. The best argument in Trump’s favor is that he’s probably lying about what he believes in order to win the nomination on a wave of hatred. As an alternative, the GOP has turned to Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), a religious
zealot whose idea of small government is checking the birth-certificate gender of anybody who tries to use a public restroom. We have no illusions about Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who combines antichoice, anti-labor policies with the demeanor of your child’s incompetent but stern soccer coach. But every vote for Kasich pushes the Republican Party closer to a brokered convention. The GOP has reaped the whirlwind, and it should have to reckon in the streets of Cleveland with the dark forces Trump has summoned.
U.S. HOUSE, 1ST DISTRICT
Suzanne Bonamici • Democrat
U.S. SENATE class with his support for free-trade pacts that have moved jobs overseas—a charge Wyden disputes by arguing he is creating jobs for Oregon by opening markets for our state’s goods. We’re torn on that issue. But Stine hasn’t convinced us we should throw a sitting senator overboard. Paul Weaver, 71, is also in the primary, but shouldn’t be— his pro-life, small-government agenda belongs in the GOP. WYDEN’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Roasted chicken from any Fred Meyer in the state, or a Cena, 7742 SE 13th Ave. “Try the lamb chops,” Wyden suggests.
Ron Wyden • Democrat
Faye Stewart • Republican
It appears that when trying to come up with a candidate to face Ron Wyden, the GOP has surrendered. None of the candidates in this race possesses the experience, fundraising ability or stature necessary to mount a credible statewide campaign. Lane County Commissioner Faye Stewart, 49, is the most politically experienced of the three. The scion of the family that owned Bohemia Lumber, once one of Oregon’s largest wood-products companies, he brings a long track record of civic and political engagement. He’s an expert in the timber politics that divide urban and rural Oregon, and as a Republican operating in the People’s Republic of Eugene, he’s experienced at bipartisan compromise. Sam Carpenter, 66, the owner of a Bend answeringservice company and business consultancy, has written two books on fixing dysfunctional businesses. But by running for the U.S. Senate without political experience or a serious campaign, he’s violating the kind of guidance he peddles. Dan Laschober, 53, a Wilsonville management consultant, is also running but lacks any history of civic engagement or political involvement. Given his modest fundraising so far—well under $100,000 this year—Stewart is unlikely to make Wyden sweat, but at least he knows some of the questions voters want asked. STEWART’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Burrito Amigos in Eugene.
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
BONAMICI’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Bombay Chaat House, Southwest 12th Avenue and Yamhill Street.
Brian Heinrich • Republican
Brian Heinrich, 40, a truck salesman from Dundee with no previous political experience or intention to mount a campaign, is the best the GOP has to offer in this race. A quasi-libertarian, he would like a smaller government and more representation of non-Democratic viewpoints. One of his opponents, Jonathan Burgess, 62, a former podiatrist who is now a handyman, showed up for his interview in a T-shirt that compared incumbent U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici to Benito Mussolini. Burgess accused her of supporting the mass murder of black babies because she’s pro-choice. A third candidate, Washington County grape grower Delinda Morgan, is a perennial candidate with little to add. It speaks volumes about the bankruptcy of Oregon’s Republican Party that these three candidates are all the GOP can offer. HEINRICH’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Tilt, a Swan Island burger joint.
P H OTO S B Y W W S TA F F A N D C O U R T E S Y O F C A N D I DAT E S
For 20 years, Ron Wyden has been our senator. According to polls, he is the best-liked politician in Oregon. No surprise. His Democratic centrist politics are in keeping with much of the state. Despite the catcalls that he is actually the third senator from New York (his wife is a Manhattan bookstore owner), Wyden travels here on a regular basis and is proud of the thousands of town halls he has held in virtually every burg in this state. He is media savvy, and his rumpled and definitely not glamorous visage works well in a state where flannel is considered dress casual. In Washington, D.C., Wyden is known for reaching across the aisle to offer solutions on health care and tax policies—a rarity in our polarized national politics. And as the ranking Democrat on the Senate Committee on Finance, he has real power. Critics charge that Wyden plays it too safe, but we mostly disagree. He was the first senator to support gay marriage. He has been a longtime advocate of gun control. And he was in the minority in voting against the Iraq War Resolution (which Hillary Clinton voted for). In recent years, Wyden, 67, has carved out a role as perhaps Capitol Hill’s leading critic of this country’s national intelligence apparatus. While he doesn’t admit it, our guess is that he has a photo of intelligence contractor-turnedwhistleblower Edward Snowden in his desk drawer. Two months before Snowden’s leaks showed that our federal government was collecting the phone records of U.S. citizens, Wyden asked Director of National Intelligence James Clapper in a public hearing whether the National Security Agency collects data of any type on millions of Americans. Clapper answered: “Not wittingly.” The leaks that followed gave the lie to that answer. We need a principled watchdog in Washington to keep up the fight, and Wyden is it. Kevin Stine, 30, a Medford city councilor, offers a provocative challenge to Wyden with a consistent critique of Wyden’s economic policies from trade to welfare reform. Stine argues that Wyden has abandoned Oregon’s working
Suzanne Bonamici, 61, a former Washington County legislator, won this seat in 2011 after former U.S. Rep. David Wu (D-Ore.) imploded and resigned midterm. Bonamici appears smart and earnest, and in practice, that’s who she is. As a junior member in the minority party, she’s not a big player in Washington: Her proudest accomplishment on the House Education Committee was securing dedicated arts funding in the new education bill. Bonamici also played a part in replacing No Child Left Behind with less prescriptive testing. Her opponent, Shabba Woodley, 25, who works in telecom sales and writes poetry, is out of his depth.
U.S. HOUSE, 5TH DISTRICT Kurt Schrader • Democrat Dave McTeague, a state representative from Milwaukie from 1985 to 1995, jumped into the Democratic primary against U.S. Rep. Kurt Schrader because Bernie Sanders inspired him. His campaign platform is more or less “what Bernie said.” In a Portland race, that might have been a winning strategy. But Oregon’s 5th District picks up only a small portion of Portland before it sweeps down the Willamette Valley through Clackamas County to Salem, then moves west to the coast. It is the only
congressional district in Oregon that is neither safely Democratic nor safely Republican. Which means the person occupying the s e a t m u st st r a d d l e Oregon’s significant political divide, and we continue to think that person is Schrader, a former state legislator and veterinarian making his fifth congressional bid. Schrader’s positions don’t always make sense to those of us watching from Portland. McTeague points to a November 2015 vote in which Schrader split from other Oregon Democrats to support a bill that made it harder for Syrians to come to the U.S. The Obama administration said the bill—dubbed the American Security Against Foreign Enemies Act—“would provide no meaningful additional security.” And McTeague says it was this issue that forced him into the race. Schrader, though, is adamant that the press mischaracterized the bill, saying all it did was add the FBI to the list of agencies reviewing applications from refugees. “This doesn’t slow it down,” Schrader says. “It doesn’t stop it. It adds another layer of security.” Hmm. Maybe. On other key issues like the Affordable Care Act, Schrader has sided with Democrats.
S TAT EWIDE
We appreciate McTeague’s criticism of Schrader, whose most recent achievements include the decidedly unsexy funding of a new Interstate 5 interchange in Woodburn, but we think Schrader is still the best fit for an ideologically diverse district. SCHRADER’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Gustav’s in Portland.
Colm Willis • Republican This was one of the most unusual interviews of the May endorsement cycle—both candidates vying to challenge U.S. Rep. Kurt Schrader came to our office trying to prove which of them stood further to the right. Of the two, we think the more credible challenge to Schrader comes from Colm Willis, a 29-yearold lawyer in independent practice in Stayton, Ore. He was admitted to
the bar only seven months ago, but he has significant political experience, including as an aide in the U.S. Senate and as political director for Oregon Right to Life from 2010 to 2015. Willis says he wants to return to Washington to focus the federal government’s priorities on working families. It’s a rare race where we’d endorse the Oregon Right to Life candidate—but Willis’ opponent, Seth Allan, is running to Willis’ right. He’s a psychiatric assistant in the ER at Providence Hospital who has the endorsement of Aaron and Melissa Klein, the owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, the Gresham bakery that refused to make a wedding cake for a lesbian couple. In this race, the advantage goes to the candidate with more political experience. That’s Willis. WILLIS’ FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Covered Bridge Cafe in Stayton.
Kate Brown • Democrat
In the 14 months since she took over from former Gov. John Kitzhaber, who resigned Feb. 18, 2015, Kate Brown has faced a lot of challenges: a mass shooting at Umpqua Community College, scandal at the Department of Human Services, incompetence at the Department of Environmental Quality, and the invasion of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge by a posse of gun-totin’ yahoos who believed their revolution was endorsed by Jesus Christ. She’s smiled through it all. Brown’s greatest political strength is her affability—and her ability, so far, to blame problems on her predecessor. As governor she’s shown a degree of decisiveness. She replaced her chief of staff rapidly when her administration began to founder. She rebounded from a rocky start (marred by a botched 2015 attempt to pass a transportation funding package) to oversee aggressive minimum-wage and renewableenergy legislation earlier this year. Critics may not like the bills, but Brown has never claimed to be anything other than a liberal Democrat, and she can right-
fully claim to have moved a progressive agenda forward. Potential rivals gave Brown a pass in 2016. She doesn’t have serious competition for this nomination. But between now and 2018, when she will probably be running for her first full term, we’d like to see her explain clearly to Oregonians what she really cares about and how she wants to change Oregon to realize her vision. She also needs to take ownership of state agencies. Scandal at the Department of Human Services appeared to take her by surprise, and she seemed equally flatfooted when her Department of Environmental Quality mishandled air-pollution fears in Portland. When she fired Oregon Lottery Director Jack Roberts last week, he reported that Brown had never asked to meet with him in her 14 months in office. That’s a cavalier attitude toward an agency that’s the state’s second-largest source of revenue. Luckily for Brown, she’s running against a handful of newbies: Dr. Julian Bell, a Medford intensive care physician who wants the state to do more about global warming; Dave Stauffer, who wants to build a giant pipe from Idaho to Astoria to capture Columbia River water for irrigation; Steve Johnson, a Portland home care worker; Kevin Forsythe, a Walmart employee from Newport; and Chet Chance of Springfield. None of them presents a serious alternative. BROWN’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Yolk in Woodstock. “Great egg sandwiches!” Brown says.
Bud Pierce • Republican
No Republican has won a governor’s election in Oregon since Vic Atiyeh was re-elected in 1982. With unemployment at a 15-year low and Gov. Kate Brown still enjoying a honeymoon with voters, it’s hard to see that changing this year. Republicans bear a big part of the blame for their 34-year drought. The GOP is irreparably split over social issues and also consistently fails to recruit candidates who might find support among the 23 percent of Oregon voters unaffiliated with a party. CONT. on page 12 Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
S TAT EWIDE
CONVERSATION: BRUCE CUFF
WW: Did you visit the Malheur occupation? Bruce Cuﬀ: I went there. I was a candidate for governor. And I talked to the sheriﬀ. I believe the sheriﬀ is the chief law enforcement oﬃcer in the county. I made a
Dr. Bud Pierce, who runs four oncology clinics in Salem, jumped into the race in September. Although Pierce has put in $1 million of his own money, his campaign has failed to generate much enthusiasm among a party faithful imbued with all the optimism of Philadelphia 76ers season-ticket holders. That’s puzzling in a way, because Pierce is thoughtful, well-spoken and reasonable: He’s a moderate on social issues such as abortion and gay rights, and unlike many GOP candidates, he says he believes the science behind global warming is solid and that we should take steps to reduce carbon emissions. He’s served as a leader of the Oregon Medical Association and helped negotiate a truce between trial lawyers and doctors. Pierce’s main competition comes from investor Allen Alley, who ran for governor in 2010 and state treasurer in 2008. Alley, an engineer and former CEO of semiconductor company Pixelworks, seemed unsure about his plans this year, entering the race only at the filing deadline. Alley ran the Republican Party of Oregon from 2011 to 2013, and although he brought a
rational approach to what has been a chaotic operation, electoral results haven’t changed. So far this year, he seems to be recycling old talking points, and in an endorsement interview was so disengaged he would not even divulge which presidential candidate he supports. Alley’s candidacy is the equivalent of a lottery ticket, purchased on the long shot that something goes horribly wrong with Gov. Kate Brown’s campaign. Pierce has shown he’s taking the race more seriously—his higher level of engagement would make him a better foil to Brown in November. Also running is Bruce Cuff, a congenial realtor from Lyons in Marion County who carries a large wooden mallet inscribed with the words “liberal idea smacker;” Bob Niemeyer, a self-employed engineer and inventor; and Bob Forthan, a Portlander who has run for mayor, governor and president.
SECRETARY OF STATE
veterans’ hiring preferences, and racial discrimination. That may please constituents, but he often seems to take on issues because of what the attention can do for him as for the interests of those he purports to serve. Avakian is so eager to win he has exaggerated the duties the Oregon Constitution established for the secretary of state, pledging to punish polluters, audit private companies and police workplace pay equality at state agencies. Those are jobs already assigned to other elected officials and state agencies. Avakian is pledging to be all things to all people in a cynical attempt to seduce uninformed voters. It’s irresponsible. Devlin, a lawmaker since 1997, is co-chair of the budget-writing Joint Ways and Means Committee. He’s a more honest and genuine politician but, by his own admission, the least charismatic in the race. He’s the Serta Perfect Sleeper of candidates: sturdy, but he’ll make you nap. He’s focused almost exclusively on the audit function of the office, even though the secretary of state is also the chief elections officer, is responsible for overseeing legislative redistricting every decade and sits on the State Land Board. In terms of communication skills or the ability to inspire the public or state employees, Devlin is lacking. That leaves Hoyle, who rose to the position of House majority leader in 2012 after only two terms in office. She’s an aggressive extrovert who
Val Hoyle • Democrat
All three candidates in this race—Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian, state Sen. Richard Devlin (D-Tualatin) and state Rep. Val Hoyle (D-Eugene)—bring strong political résumés to the race. But it’s what they would do with the job that sets them apart—and makes it crucial that voters rally behind anybody but Avakian. The former trial lawyer and Washington County lawmaker was appointed labor commissioner in 2008 and has defended his seat three times. As labor commissioner, Avakian has latched onto high-profile issues: gay rights, 12
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commitment to myself if he said that wasn’t a good idea, then I wouldn’t go. So I talked to Sheriﬀ Ward. I talked to three sheriﬀs, and they said, “Look, it’s not going to do any good to go out there.” I said, “OK, look, I believe you’re the top law enforcement oﬃcer in the county, I will take that.” My mom sent me with sleeping bags and snacks for the boys, and I had to take it back to Mom and say, “Sorry, Mom. Can’t go.”
PIERCE’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Momiji Japanese restaurant in Salem.
P H OTO S B Y W W S TA F F A N D C O U R T E S Y O F C A N D I DAT E S
Gubernatorial candidate Cuﬀ wants federal lands placed under county control. That was also a demand of Ammon Bundy, who in January seized the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Eastern Oregon.
worked in sales and marketing for two bicycle manufacturers. Hoyle leapfrogged more experienced politicians in Salem by working hard, speaking bluntly and pushing to get challenging bills such as family medical leave and expanded gun background checks passed. Unlike Devlin, our second choice, Hoyle enjoys engaging with the public and political stakeholders. Too many Oregon politicians are aloof, passive or conflict-averse. Hoyle is none of the above—and the right choice for secretary of state. HOYLE’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Bacon Nation in Eugene.
Dennis Richardson • Republican
When Dennis Richardson ran for governor in 2014, his
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conservative social views—he’s pro-life and against same-sex marriage—crippled him. With a squeaky voice and grandfatherly appearance, he never stood a chance to unseat his opponent, Gov. John Kitzhaber—Oregon’s version of the Marlboro Man. Secretary of state is a better fit for Richardson, a retired trial lawyer who is analytical and, as a former co-chair of the Joint Ways and Means Committee, an expert on the state’s budget. Serving as the state’s chief auditor, which is one of the secretary of state’s prime jobs, would be a good fit for Richardson, one of the first lawmakers to raise substantive concerns about Cover Oregon. He’s running against former Springfield mayor and current Lane County Commissioner Sid Leiken. Leiken’s background in the dry-cleaning and real estate business served him well at the local level, but he’s far less schooled in state government than Richardson. RICHARDSON’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Richardson, who attributes his adult-onset diabetes to his exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam, likes Sizzler, because he says it has good salads.
CONT. on page 14
CONVERSATION: BRAD AVAKIAN Avakian sent out a campaign press release in April, hammering opponents Val Hoyle and Richard Devlin for taking donations from large corporations. WW: You’ve highlighted that [your opponents] have taken a collective $10,500 from Altria and Walmart over the past eight years. Brad Avakian: We did. You’ve taken $25,000 from oil companies over the same period. How’s that diﬀerent? I don’t know which oil companies you’re talking about.
Space Age Fuel, Cain Petroleum, Oil Re-Reﬁning. Everyone that you are mentioning are close friends of my father; they are longtime family friends. They are local businesses. So if they are in the oil business, but they are friends of your family, it’s OK? I think it makes a diﬀerence when people who are close to your family donate money as opposed to seeking money from global corporations.
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LE G I S LATU R E
SENATE DISTRICT 21
(MILWAUKIE, OAK GROVE AND PARTS OF SOUTHEAST PORTLAND)
Smith: a socially moderate Mormon businessman. (Smith has endorsed Vial.) Aside from knowing the district well, Vial has shown that he’s no ideologue. He didn’t rule out new taxes to address shortfalls in the state’s Public Employee Retirement System, and he has the flexibility to work with colleagues and become an effective legislator even as a member of the minority party. VIAL’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Safeway, for a bag of salad to eat at his desk.
HOUSE DISTRICT 28 (ALOHA, PARTS OF BEAVERTON)
mas County Planning Commission and the Milwaukie Design/Development Task Force. Meek is steeped in the struggles of first-time home buyers and would like to focus as a lawmaker on delivering affordable housing more efficiently. Although he’s got the backing of most Democratic interest groups, he’s independent enough to say he’s neutral on Initiative Petition 28, the proposed $2.5 billion annual tax increase. We take that as a sign he’s not just another rubber-stamp Democrat. A third candidate, Terry Gibson, 57, a landscape architect, would like to streamline the regulations governing recreational marijuana sales, but he’s less grounded in district issues than Meek. MEEK’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Lil’ Cooperstown in Oregon City.
HOUSE DISTRICT 43
(NORTH AND NORTHEAST PORTLAND)
Kathleen Taylor • Democrat
TAYLOR’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Pyro Pizza.
HOUSE DISTRICT 26
(WILSONVILLE, SHERWOOD, PARTS OF TUALATIN AND HILLSBORO)
Gary Carlson • Republican
It’s a sign of how firmly Democratic incumbent state Rep. Jeff Barker (D-Aloha) has locked down his district that no serious Republican challenger has bothered to enter the primary. Barker is a former cop who’s known as a straight shooter in Salem. His law-and-order but populist instincts are a perfect fit for the future of Washington County. Attorney Gary Carlson, 75, has a wide range of life and work experiences. He has worked for the Montana Supreme Court, defended death-penalty cases and worked as a labor and jack-of-all trades attorney. His idea to reduce redundancies in Oregon law is a noble goal. We can imagine him as a dedicated if unambitious member of the minority party. He’s running against Daniel Martin, an Aloha retiree, and Alton Mozingo II of Beaverton. CARLSON’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Chart House.
HOUSE DISTRICT 40
(GLADSTONE, JOHNSON CITY, OREGON CITY, OAK LODGE, JENNINGS LODGE)
Richard Vial • Republican
Former state Rep. Matt Wingard is hoping to get his old job back after resigning in disgrace in 2012. Wingard quit after an affair with a legislative aide that began when she was just 20. He had previously acknowledged hitting his then-7-year-old son with a screwdriver. When Rep. John Davis (R-Wilsonville) decided not to seek a third term, Wingard decided voters needed to see more of him. We assume his comeback is fueled by the same hubris that drove him from office, but we’re just guessing—he didn’t attend our endorsement interview to explain his life choices. Fortunately, voters have a choice between two strong contenders. Davis’ hand-picked successor is John Boylston, 35, a trusts and estates attorney, who moved to the district last year and has won the backing of the Portland Business Alliance. Our choice is Richard Vial, 61, a real estate attorney and farmer, who has lived in the district for 30 years. He’s a Republican in the vein of former U.S. Sen. Gordon 14
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Mark Meek • Democrat
It’s a close call in the contest to replace state Rep. Brent Barton (D-Oregon City), who is retiring after three terms. Steven Cade, 33, an Army veteran now practicing law, is bright and, if elected, would like to tackle Oregon’s convoluted property tax system, which he says is inefficient and unfair. Cade has limited political experience, and lawyers are already well-represented in the Capitol. Mark Meek, 52, a former Hawthorne Boulevard bar owner-turned-realtor, is the kind of independent, smallbusiness owner who’s in short supply in Salem. Like Cade, he’s a veteran, but he’s also served on the Clacka-
Tawna Sanchez • Democrat
The race to replace state Rep. Lew Frederick (D-Portland), who’s moving up to the Senate, attracted two evenly matched candidates with strong credentials. Tawna Sanchez, 56, a social worker, is the acting executive director of the Native American Youth and Family Center. She’s a North Portland native and has served as a foster parent to 18 children. Roberta Phillip-Robbins, 39, works in gang violence prevention for Multnomah County. She emigrated from Trinidad and taught public school in Florida before relocating to Oregon to attend law school. Phillip-Robbins has a slew of endorsements from unions, while Sanchez has a strong list of individual endorsers. Phillip-Robbins, who is black, first entered the contest to represent the district, which was formed in the 1980s as a way to give black voters a louder voice in Salem. (Before 1982, inner North and Northeast Portland were divided among four districts.) The district launched the political career of Margaret Carter, the first black woman elected to the Oregon Legislature, but also Deborah Kafoury and Chip Shields, who are white. We’re acutely aware of how white the Legislature is, but we’ll give a narrow edge to Sanchez, who as a Native American belongs to a group that is underrepresented in Oregon politics. In addition, her experience as a foster parent and an administrator at NAYA gives her insight into the child welfare system the Legislature badly needs in the wake of revelations that the state’s Department of Human Services regularly turned its back on vulnerable kids—especially children of color. NAYA, Sanchez’s employer, has its own financial and managerial problems, but there are no indications they are her fault. Robert Andrews Jr., 56, a pastor at St. Jude Church, is also running but can’t compete with the other two candidates. SANCHEZ’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Overlook Restaurant on North Interstate Avenue.
P H OTO S B Y W W S TA F F A N D C O U R T E S Y O F C A N D I DAT E S
After one term in the House, state Rep. Kathleen Taylor (D-Portland) now has a virtual free ride to the Senate, thanks to the retirement of state Sen. Diane Rosenbaum. Taylor, 41, a former government auditor, brings useful skills to Salem, and passed bills last session that should sharpen the state’s woeful record at collecting monies it’s owed. She has token opposition from retired Portland Parks & Recreation supervisor John Sweeney, who has been running for office since 1968. Sweeney, 76, is a nice guy who is still not ready for the Legislature.
LE G I S LATUR E CONVERSATION: TAWNA SANCHEZ Oregon House candidate Tawna Sanchez has cared for 18 foster children since the 1990s. WW: Can you identify a problem you see and tell us how you would work for a solution in Salem? Tawna Sanchez: One of the biggest problems I see right this very
minute is foster care. In particular, the disproportionate number of kids of color in foster care. It’s a huge issue. So is it your belief that the Department of Human Services is too quick to separate children, to take them out of the home? In some instances, yes.
HOUSE DISTRICT 44 (NORTH PORTLAND)
Tina Kotek • Democrat
After five terms in the Oregon House, including two as speaker, state Rep. Tina Kotek (D-Portland) has built a reputation for discipline and effectiveness. Unlike her counterpart in the upper chamber—the colorful and emotional Senate President Peter Courtney (D-Salem)— Kotek performs her job with the drama-free efficiency of a tax collector. She’s pushed through major legislation— including a historic minimum-wage increase, family medical leave and an increase in renewable energy production capacity—while keeping a traditionally fractious caucus focused on her agenda rather than internecine squabbles. Kotek’s opponent, transportation activist Sharon Nasset, deserves credit for her yearslong crusade against the now-dormant Columbia River Crossing Project, but she has little room to criticize an incumbent who’s delivered on her party’s priorities.
What motivation would they have to do that? There’s a level of implicit bias and assumption that communities of color are less able to take care of their children. And I’m sorry to say that’s a struggle that we’ve been dealing with for many, many years. We’ve many times seen an issue where children have gone through
office, serving on the Reynolds School Board. He’s come a long way in a short time. One of four sons born to a single mother who worked fast-food jobs and cleaned houses to support her sons, Hernandez has a remarkable life story. During this campaign, his canvassers have knocked on doors of houses Hernandez helped his mother clean. At the University of Oregon, he got involved in the Oregon Student Association, as well as student government and immigrants’ rights issues. He’s worked for OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon and the Community Alliance of Tenants, and after earning a master’s in social work, now runs a new, eight-person nonprofit that seeks to train social justice leaders. Hernandez’s opponent, Gloria Ngezaho, a community activist and Concordia University doctoral candidate, did not attend our interview.
Diego Hernandez • Democrat
Two candidates are vying to replace state Rep. Jessica Vega Peterson (D-Portland), who is running for county commission after two terms in this seat. Diego Hernandez is only 28, but he already holds public
BYNUM’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Lonchera Brother Express on Southeast 82nd Avenue. She likes the beef Milanesa torta. “It’s a huge sandwich, and for $5 you can actually feed two people or have it for lunch and dinner.”
HOUSE DISTRICT 52
(HOOD RIVER, CASCADE LOCKS AND CORBETT)
HERNANDEZ’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Chai Thai at Southeast 140th Avenue and Stark Street. “I like to mix the drunken noodles and pad Thai together,” he says.
HOUSE DISTRICT 51
(CLACKAMAS, HAPPY VALLEY, DAMASCUS AND PORTIONS OF SOUTHEAST PORTLAND)
KOTEK’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Bagel & Box on North Lombard Street. “Best bagels in town,” she says.
HOUSE DISTRICT 47
the system, and children of color end up staying longer than children who are not of color. They end up being transferred to more and more homes. The majority of kiddos are removed—sadly enough— for what they refer to as neglect, which translates easily to poverty. Poverty should not be a reason that people remove your children.
Janelle Bynum • Democrat
Voters in this district are fortunate to have two strong candidates vying to replace state Rep. Shemia Fagan (D-Happy Valley), who’s stepping down after two terms. Randy Shannon is a recently retired city of Gresham engineer who’s also served 10 years on the Damascus City Council. He’s smart, funny and would bring a deep knowledge of transportation infrastructure to Salem. That’s useful at a time when lawmakers are struggling to find new ways to bail out the Oregon Department of Transportation and come up with an alternative funding source to the gas tax, which is an insufficient revenue stream. We’ll give a slight edge to Janelle Bynum, a former General Motors supply-chain manager who owns and operates two McDonald’s restaurants along Southeast 82nd Avenue with her husband. McDonald’s doesn’t get a lot of love from the left. But by working at the intersection of minimum-wage workers and the daily lives of her customers, Bynum would bring a valuable perspective to a Democratic caucus that sometimes appears to lack empathy for small businesses.
Mark Reynolds • Democrat
A Democrat hasn’t held this seat since 2010, when a Republican school board member from Hood River ousted then-Rep. Suzanne VanOrman by a comfortable margin. That winner, Mark Johnson, has since established himself as a competent lawmaker willing to cross the aisle on good legislation such as beefing up charterschool standards and lowering college costs.. In other words, unseating him won’t be easy. Of the two candidates in the Democratic primary, Mark Reynolds, 60, is best equipped to mount a challenge. Even his opponent, Walt Trandum, seems to think so. “He’s a standup guy who’s running for all the right reasons,” Trandum says of Reynolds. A retired teacher, Reynolds worries Oregon isn’t preparing students as well as it used to because schools have lost many programs. That’s a standard talking point for a Democrat. What gives him an advantage is his modest record of public service. In addition to teaching, Reynolds has served with the Wasco County Commission on Children and Families, and the Committee of Practitioners for the state Migrant Education Program. Trandum, a 63-year-old caregiver at a group home for developmentally disabled adults, is running a principled campaign. He’s capped campaign contributions at $50 per person. REYNOLDS’ FAVORITE FOOD CART: Four & Twenty Blackbirds in Hood River.
CONT. on page 16
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C I TY
P O RTLA ND
MAYOR OF PORTLAND Ted Wheeler Maybe it’s The New Yorker story about the massive Cascadian earthquake striking off the Oregon Coast. But the specter of Portland sliding into the ocean replays in our heads. That seems an apt image for what’s at stake in the Portland mayor’s race. Home prices are rising at levels not seen since the preGreat Recession bubble. Vacancies plummet. Rents climb. Wages are stagnant, and families who used to be able to afford charming fixers in close-in neighborhoods are being pushed to the edge, stretching commutes and budgets. Portland risks losing more than its affordability (to the extent it still exists). It risks surrendering its character as a place where good citizens are its riches, to borrow a saying etched on the Skidmore Fountain. We don’t fear following the path of San Francisco just because it’s expensive. It’s because of what that city turned its back on: the artists, the dreamers, the people whose existence challenged the constraints of the rest of the country’s norms but still found a home there. Portland is not yet the Bay Area. But we face other dangers. Our most vulnerable residents—the homeless, the drug-addicted, the mentally ill—live even closer to the margins. Their growing presence on street corners and in camps demands a humane and effective response. Four years ago, Portland voters sent a Mr. Fix-It to City Hall as mayor. In Charlie Hales, Portland got a seasoned politician—a former city commissioner who knew how to navigate Portland’s tricky, commission form of government and who pledged to return fiscal sanity and common sense to City Hall. Hales set about balancing Portland’s budget and addressing the city’s monumental maintenance backlog. But along the way, he got lost. Hales alienated key allies with his brusque, go-it-alone style and failed to pursue a coherent agenda that could inspire Portland’s government-loving hordes. He shrugged off a lobbying code violation tied to a key decision of his—the welcoming of ride-hailing app Uber to town—while bristling at citizen questions about his hopelessly confusing “street fee.” Only when he decided Oct. 26 not to run for re-election did Hales seem to return to his values—compact, walkable neighborhoods for all and compassion for people living on the margins. By then, it was too late to give Charlie another chance. Of those running for this seat, Ted Wheeler, Oregon’s treasurer and a former Multnomah County chairman, is easily the best candidate. When he launched his campaign in September, Wheel-
er identified the key issues of homelessness and income inequality as ones he would tackle. It is, at times, difficult to conceive that a man who once reported annual income of $2.2 million would be the person to lead on these issues, but Wheeler—a descendant of timber industry giants— seems genuine. Wheeler has obvious weaknesses. As treasurer and, before that, county chairman, he has often stumbled when he needed to persuade others. Yet throughout his campaign, Wheeler has shown he’s done his homework on city issues, and his openness and readiness to engage with voters on the campaign trail suggest he may succeed in making Portland government more transparent and accessible.
PORTLAND IN 2016 IS SHAKY. TED WHEELER IS FIRM GROUND. Hardly a forum passes where Wheeler doesn’t poke fun at his own nerdiness. That’s an endearing quality and probably also a lifesaver. In the circular firing squad known as City Hall, a sense of humor is crucial. Wheeler’s ambition—it’s hardly a secret he wants to be governor one day—is another reason to put our trust in him. If he wants to return to statewide office, he knows he can’t screw up. Wheeler has offered a consistent message throughout the campaign. That’s even more important because his opponents have been so erratic—and disappointing. Jules Bailey—a Multnomah County commissioner and three-time state legislator—at first seemed to position himself as the more progressive candidate in the race. Hailing from House District 42 in the heart of liberal
Southeast Portland, Bailey brought with him to the race an impressive list of accomplishments, including the creation of a state energy-retrofit program, the sunsetting of various tax credits and a push toward new approaches to retirement security. On the campaign trail, Bailey has underwhelmed. At forums he has appeared wooden and exceedingly scripted—as if reading his remarks from Google Glass. For a guy who entered the race to serve as an alternative to Wheeler, Bailey too often offers no contrast to his opponent. On the issues of transportation funding, affordable housing and air pollution, they sound more like running mates than rivals. On one issue that allowed him the opportunity to demonstrate his core values, Bailey positioned himself as more conservative than Wheeler. The issue? Ending the 48-hour rule in the Portland police contract. Today, Bailey insists he wants to end the provision that gives cops two days before they have to answer questions about their involvement in a deadly shooting. But he waffled for weeks before reaching that answer. His indecision suggested he was kowtowing to the police union that had endorsed him. That’s poor judgment of the city’s values, and a lousy display of independence—two strikes on one pitch. Sarah Iannarone was also a latecomer to the mayor’s race, joining in January after Bailey. A program director at Portland State University, where she reports to Hales’ wife, Nancy, Iannarone brings urban planning experience to the race. Her answers at forums have been novel and refreshing, although often unrealistic. A carless downtown? Sounds great. But how would it work? In this case, Iannarone’s lack of any elected experience is a serious detriment. And her strong connection to the Hales family, after Wheeler pushed Charlie out of the race, still seems odd. We’re glad Sean Davis, 43, is running for mayor. The Army vet, volunteer and community college instructor brings passion and serious dedication to the race. It’s clear he’s been reading city budget documents and poring over policies. Also in the race are 56-year-old Steven Entwisle, whose job history appears to have ended in the 1980s; perennial candidate Lew Humble; Oregon Department of Justice lawyer David Schor; Trevor Manning; David “The Ack” Ackerman; activist Jessie Sponberg; drummer and jewelry maker Bim Ditson; state employee Deborah Harris; “selfindulgent student of multiple disciplines” Patty Burkett; Eric Alexander Calhoun; and Bruce Broussard. Portland in 2016 is shaky. Ted Wheeler is firm ground. WHEELER’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Koi Fusion
CONVERSATION: JULES BAILEY
Mayoral candidate Jules Bailey has refused to disclose all his clients from when he worked as an economic consultant while serving in the Oregon Legislature. WW: Can you see how this is casting a pall of doubt over your campaign? For all we know, the Maﬁa was one of your clients. For all we know, it was Goldman Sachs. You pick whatever devil you want. Jules Bailey: If there is one shred of
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
evidence that one of my clients directly inﬂuenced a vote in my legislative career, I would be happy to respond to that. It hasn’t turned up. We couldn’t possibly know if we don’t know who your clients were. The fact is, there are other folks at this table that haven’t disclosed all of their ﬁnancial income either, or all of their
investments. We have a citizen legislature, where legislators have to have outside work. We get paid a little over $20,000 a year. So as a consequence, you think it’s appropriate for voters not to know who is providing the salaries for citizen legislators? It’s not a salary. I had a contractual relationship as a consultant. And I followed
every law that’s on the books. I followed every disclosure rule that’s on the books. So you’re saying you are [refusing to name clients] because of your concern about your need to make a livelihood, right? Partially, and because I think it generates a feeding frenzy where you get specious accusations about things that people assume are connected but are not.
C I TY
CITY COUNCIL, SEAT 1 Amanda Fritz
Amanda Fritz had planned for her second term to be her last. But she’s running for a third term following the 2014 death of her husband in a car crash. After eight years at City Hall, the former neighborhood activist and psychiatric nurse says she wants to stay so she can continue to oversee two priorities: parks improvements in underserved parts of Portland funded by the 2014 levy renewal, and police reforms guided by the city’s 2014 settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice over the bureau’s poor treatment of the mentally ill. We think voters should keep her around. That’s not just because Fritz’s opponents make a poor case for why they’d be better fits. (More on that in a bit.) Fritz enjoys popularity in Portland, and for good reason. She watches the city’s budget like a mama bear guards her cubs, and in her current term helped establish an independent budget office, freeing it from layers of bureaucracy that obscured its decision-making. She has
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insisted that City Hall fund priorities such as street maintenance before pet projects. But on initiatives that speak to Portland voters’ liberal values, she’s willing to make new financial commitments. She pushed paid parental leave for city workers in 2015 as a follow-up to her successful 2013 initiative mandating paid sick leave at private businesses. We remain frustrated by Fritz’s obstructionist approach to new housing—she often serves as the City Council’s voice for neighborhood associations who would rather see 10 families displaced than lose an old bungalow or a tall tree. On other issues, Fritz serves as a useful if eccentric dissenting voice. Her insistence that she would never ride in an Uber probably struck some observers as out of touch. But her unyielding insistence that Uber be held to a higher standard in Portland on issues of passenger safety showed integrity and commitment to the public against Silicon Valley muscle. Fritz drew five opponents in the primary, but only one of them is credible. Ann Sanderson, president of the Woodstock Community Business Association, entered Portland’s political fray in 2014 when Commissioner Steve Novick proposed a byzantine street fee to pay for needed road repairs. Sanderson shows promise, and we hope she stays engaged and runs again. She brings into focus the frustrations of smallbusiness owners who feel shut out of City Hall, and does so with unexpected positivity. But Sanderson doesn’t offer a strong enough critique of Fritz. She says the dynamic at City Hall is wrong and that “people aren’t being heard.” That may be true. But Sanderson’s real complaint is with Novick; Fritz is the least guilty on the council of those sins. This term, Fritz professes to having answered 25,000 emails from constituents, down from 50,000 in her previous term but still remarkable. Also on the ballot are David Morrison, a single-issue candidate running to stop cellphone towers; Lanita Duke,
Feel Great Abo ut
a community journalist; activist Sara Long; and Tabitha Ivan, a 2015 Rose Festival princess who attended Lincoln High School.
FRITZ’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Honkin’ Huge Burritos
CITY COUNCIL, SEAT 4 Steve Novick
It’s an indication of how badly Steve Novick has disappointed in this job that nine candidates are challenging him in his bid to return to the Portland City Council. Novick entered his first elected office as a darling of the left—a policy wonk with a sense of humor and an endearing weakness for quoting Casablanca in policy fights. He had big ideas about reducing health care costs and charging for parking. But Novick has worn badly. In part, that’s because CONT. on page 18
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he was the public face of the “street fee,” a taxcollecting scheme that often seemed piloted by a drunk driver. Novick spent the better part of a year defensive and antagonistic, dragging the city through a series of ill-conceived proposals to raise money for street safety and repairs. Residents and business owners were angry—rightly so. To make matters worse, Novick got cozy with ride-hailing giant Uber—a company that hired Novick’s campaign consultant, Mark Wiener, to lobby him at a crucial moment. That was a peculiar lapse, and makes it harder for Novick to explain why he abandoned local taxi drivers to Uber. So how could we possibly endorse this letdown of a city commissioner? In part, it’s because he faces no credible opponents. Sue Stahl, a representative on the Portland Commission on Disability, makes a forceful critique of Novick’s support for Uber, saying the ride-sharing app has flooded Portland with drivers but mostly ignored the needs of disabled passengers like her. We hope Stahl continues her activism at City Hall, just not from a commissioner’s office. We really wanted to root for Chloe Eudaly, owner of independent bookstore Reading Frenzy, who’s become a fierce advocate for affordable housing and protections for renters. But she’s fizzled on the campaign trail. In our endorsement interview, she showed little knowledge or interest in subjects outside her chosen issue. And these are important subjects: Eudaly professed naiveté on how to negotiate changes in the police union contract that allows officers to keep silent for 48 hours after a shooting. Fred Stewart is also running. A pro-gentrification real estate agent, Stewart has a share of personal problems that we think reflect poorly on his character. Among other things, he has filed for bankruptcy five times since 1991. Stuart Emmons, an architect, offers different skills than anyone on the City Council. He’s actually built affordable housing in Portland and professes to know how the city could inexpensively add more units. Yet he struggles to describe the basic functions of the City Council, and comes across as a red-faced grouch, huffing and puffing at Novick in spurts of rage. It’s not the fact that Emmons faced foreclosure twice and in 2012 declared bankruptcy that makes him unprepared to occupy a seat at City Hall. It’s that his basic message seems to be “I’m not Steve,” and we think a candidate needs to offer more. None of the other entrants in the race is running a serious campaign. Jim Lee wants Portland to build a small Italian opera house in the Pearl District. Shannon Estabrook is a semi-retired college instructor of at-risk students. Michael Durrow, Leah Dumas and Joseph Puckett haven’t shown any signs of life on the campaign trail. That leaves Novick. There’s reason to believe he’s learned from his humbling first term. He is willing to admit his failings, something we wouldn’t have predicted two years ago. And Novick can point to significant achievements in office. His decision to reform the city’s disabled-parking permit program has freed up additional parking downtown. He’s done more than any politician in memory to prepare the
PORT L AN D city for the impending Cascadian earthquake. And he’s placed a common-sense gas tax on the ballot—if the measure passes, it will be the first concrete step Portland has taken to reducing its revenue backlog for paving roads. Most importantly, we believe that Novick offers the most eloquent and reasoned voice on the City Council for fighting rising rents by building housing—dense housing, and lots of it. He’s a progressive who will acknowledge the existence of supply and demand. Portland needs him to make that case in the next four years. Novick needs a second chance. This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. NOVICK’S FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Taqueria Nueve
METRO COUNCIL DISTRICT 3
Think of incumbent Craig Dirksen as the John the Baptist for Portland’s next MAX line. In his first term on the Metro Council, he’s been the evangelist who preaches the virtues of a public transit corridor to Bridgeport Village. Although TriMet operates light-rail lines, the planning phase of that project is the responsibility of Metro, and it’s a treacherous job: Some suburban residents see trains as carriers of crime, and can vote to block their path. Tigard will hold exactly such a vote this fall. Dirksen, who served as Tigard mayor from 2003 to 2012, is well-suited to diplomacy on behalf of expanding Portland’s model light-rail system. He also plays a crucial role as co-chair of the Joint Policy Advisory Committee on Transportation, which sounds as fun as a day at the dentist’s office but plays the key role of securing federal funds for transit projects. Dirksen is being challenged from the left by Gerritt Rosenthal, a mostly retired environmental consultant whom we last saw two years ago, losing a bid for the Legislature to Rep. Julie Parrish (R-West Linn). Rosenthal would like Metro to be more aggressive in pushing its Southwest light-rail line. We prefer Dirksen’s careful approach. DIRKSEN’S FAVORITE RESTAURANTS: Cafe Allegro and Pacific Breeze, both in Tigard.
CONT. on page 20
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It’s a good thing incumbent Sam Chase serves on the regional planning agency. The former chief of staff to Portland City Commissioner Nick Fish has developed an alarming case of plannerspeak, a condition in which every sentence sounds like a white paper on good governance. Translated into English, Chase’s agenda is
MULTNOMAH COUNTY COMMISSION DISTRICT 1
Portland Nonprofits! It’s almost time to apply for the 2016 Give!Guide and nominate someone for the Skidmore Prize. June 1 at giveguide.org.
A crowded field of candidates seeks to replace Jules Bailey, who’s running for Portland mayor. Dr. Sharon Meieran stands out. For the past 10 years, Meieran has worked as an emergency room doctor, most recently for Kaiser hospitals, where she’s witnessed firsthand the ravages of our nation’s opioid problem and our inadequate mental health care. She practiced law for seven years before medical school. Meieran has never held elected office— although we endorsed her when she ran unsuccessfully for the state Legislature in 2012 against Jennifer Williamson, who went on to become House majority leader. Meieran has her own track record, though. She was one of the first physicians in Oregon to raise concerns about the opiate drug abuse epidemic, writing op-eds and buttonholing reporters on the topic. She was one of the leaders in the movement to address the warehousing of psychiatric patients in Portland emergency rooms. It’s her training as a physician that best prepares Meieran for service at the county, where there’s a renewed focus on improving the lives of
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simple and praiseworthy: He wants the Portland region to build more housing, and make more of it affordable. Metro plays a crucial part in that task: It sets the requirements for how much housing each city in the area must build—and is legally responsible for seeing those benchmarks are met. Chase has been more engaged in this effort than any other Metro councilor. We’re not entirely wowed by the results, but neither are we excited by Chase’s challenger, Colby Clipston, whose chief political experience is as a coordinator for Wolf-PAC, a group trying to overturn the Supreme Court decision on Citizens United by passing state resolutions. (He hasn’t succeeded in Oregon.) He has some good ideas—we especially like the notion of Metro forcing TriMet to offer reduced fares for poor people—but he’s not ready for this job. CHASE’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Nong’s Khao Man Ghai
the mentally ill. That work requires understanding the complicated world of medical billing and reimbursement—and how to deliver help seamlessly so it actually reaches people. Eric Zimmerman is Meieran’s closest competitor. Chief of staff to Multnomah County Commissioner Diane McKeel, Zimmerman is backed by the unions representing sheriffs’ deputies and Portland police officers. He already knows the workings of the county, yet he’s failed to make a compelling case for what he would accomplish if elected. One of his goals, he told us, was to better track the outcome of programs to ensure they’re helping. Important? Sure. That’s also a vague enough promise to make us question the candidate’s diligence. Zimmerman also brings baggage to the race. As McKeel’s chief of staff, he interfered with a land-use dispute on behalf of his boss. Last year, with Zimmerman’s help, McKeel sought $200,000 in county funding to promote an antiHIV drug without disclosing her son worked for the manufacturer. Brian Wilson, making his second bid for this office, brings experience as a community volunteer on groups such as the Multnomah County Charter Review Commission. A retired executive from his family’s real estate management business, the Kalberer Co., Wilson seems sincere in his desire to improve services for the county’s vulnerable constituents. We agree with him that disparate treatment of inmates in the county’s jails needs to be addressed. We just think Meieran is better equipped to tackle the issue. Mel Rader, executive director of Upstream Public Health, helped lead the unsuccessful fight to bring fluoride to Portland’s drinking water. Marisha Childs, a lawyer who helps elderly clients establish conservatorships and juvenile clients deal with dependency cases, also serves on the Reed Neighborhood Association. Both candidates strike us as capable and dedicated, but not yet ready for this office. Also on the ballot are Ken Stokes, a retired green economist, and perennial candidate Wes Soderback. MEIERAN’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: Taco City, next to Wilson High School
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DISTRICT 4 Lori Stegmann
The race to replace Commissioner Diane McKeel, who is terming out, pits Amanda Schroeder, a veterans’ services representative, against Lori Stegmann, an insurance agent and Gresham city councilor. As gentrification west of I-205 funnels more of Multnomah County’s low-income residents east, it’s more important than ever that east county residents have a representative at the county table. Judged by that criteria, Stegmann is an easy choice. A lifelong resident of the district, she served on the Gresham planning and redevelopment commissions before moving up to the Gresham City Council—where she drew the nickname “the Rock of Rockwood.” She’s energetic, smart and focused, and will give east county a stronger voice than it’s had under McKeel. STEGMANN’S FAVORITE FOOD CART: El Cazador #2. “It is in the heart of Rockwood and has the best asada tacos in town,” she says. “This is real Mexican food!”
LOCAL MEASURES Measure 26-173 PORTLAND GAS TAX
It’s been a long, strange road trip to reach this straightforward tax measure. Portland City Hall’s neglect of street repairs is infamous. For three decades, city officials let paving projects stack up until the backlog reached an estimated $1 billion. In 2013, Mayor Charlie Hales and Commissioner Steve Novick launched a fireworks display’s worth of flaming bad ideas for fixing streets by taxing Portlanders—often with proposals that would have landed on churches, poor people and small businesses. Novick, to his credit, soldiered on—and now emerges with a CONT. on page 23
CONVERSATION: TINA KOTEK Opponents of a Portland gas tax warn the ballot measure could blow up negotiations for a state transportation package. We asked Oregon House Speaker Tina Kotek. WW: Do you support the gas tax on the May ballot for the city of Portland? Tina Kotek: I do. Because even if [or] when we pass a
package at the state level, the potholes and side roads in Portland are not going to get fixed by that. Opponents of the gas tax say if Portland passes a tax gas, it will severely reduce the chances of a state transportation package. I don’t agree with that. That is rhetoric coming from the gas station owners.
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PORT L A ND
sensible plan to tack on 10 cents of local tax to every gallon of (currently cheap) gasoline sold within city limits. The tax will raise $16 million a year, and expires in four years. That money will hardly solve Portland’s repair backlog—or make much of a dent in the need for sidewalks and crosswalks in East Portland— but it’s dedicated funding. Novick makes a persuasive case that federal earmarks will keep City Hall from redirecting current budgets away from transportation, so this actually puts new money on the streets. Opposition to this measure comes from local gas station owners, who understandably fear losing customers to competitors outside city limits. They make two arguments worth addressing. First, they warn that passing this tax will scuttle a statewide transportation bill, siphoning off all political will to fix Oregon’s highways. This is an unpersuasive case: Democrats in Salem had two sessions to pass a transportation package, and failed. The idea that Portland should wait for Gov. Kate Brown to get her act together—or that this tax would ruin her delicate negotiations— is silly. (See conversation with Tina Kotek on page 21.) More compelling is the gas lobby’s frustration that Portland hasn’t trimmed its own budget to send more money to roads. We don’t buy the city’s claim that it has tightened its belt as far as possible. There are meaningful cuts the city could make— starting with the bloated fire bureau, which gets saved from reforms by its powerful union. But that isn’t the question voters are being asked. Voting against this measure to protest city spending decisions would be cutting off our roads to spite our face. The question is simple: Is 10 cents a gallon added to gas sales a fair price for fixing potholes and adding sidewalks? The answer is yes.
Measure 26-174 OREGON HISTORICAL SOCIETY LEVY
Kerry Tymchuk has a lot of explaining to do. In 2011, Tymchuk took over as director of the Oregon Historical Society, which collects and displays Beaver State artifacts in a museum along Portland’s South Park Blocks. Voters had just approved a life preserver for the OHS, which teetered on the brink of financial insolvency, by passing a $12 million property tax levy to keep the archives staffed. Tymchuk told The Oregonian he wouldn’t return for a second bailout: “If we have to ask for it again, then we haven’t done our job.” But five years later, Multnomah County commissioners have sent a renewal of the levy to voters. That puts Tymchuk in an awkward spot—he’s campaigning for tax dollars he pledged he wouldn’t seek. To his credit, Tymchuk—a former staffer for U.S. Sen. Gordon Smith (R-Ore.)—has faced the music, admitting to us he made a foolish pledge. More importantly, he’s been the best director of the OHS since Tom Vaughn stepped down in 1990, after 35 years at the helm. He succeeded in stabilizing the society’s finances, increasing its cash reserves from nothing to $6 million. In a refreshing departure, Tymchuk isn’t crying poor: He says if voters don’t approve this levy, he’ll set out to raise private dollars. Good management aside, why should a private nonprofit continue to siphon off tax dollars? Because it does public work. The OHS performs the kind of historical archiving that in other places—Washington and Idaho, for example—is a function of state government. It also offers free admission to all Multnomah County residents, including the 8,800 school kids who visit each year. It’s the Smithsonian of Oregon, and just like in D.C., you don’t have to buy a ticket. If renewed, the levy will continue to cost homeowners 5 cents on every $1,000 of assessed property value. That’s a pittance to pay for knowing your roots. Vote yes. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Big Trouble in Little Beirut AS MR. TRUMP GOES TO WASHINGTON (STATE), WE REVISIT THE LEGENDARY BUSH PROTESTS. @huekahjohn
This week, Donald J. Trump is coming to—well, not to Portland. The nativist Republican learned his lesson about holding a rally in the middle of a large liberal city when he aborted a rally in Chicago where his supporters were totally outgunned. But Donny is coming to Vancouver, which is close enough to Portland to see vigorous “direct action.” There’s a chance this week’s Trump appearance will be the most intense protests in a quarter century since the series of Portland protests that earned the city the nickname “Little Beirut.” The Little Beirut protests happened between 1989, the year Taylor Swift was born, and 1991, the year Nirvana released Nevermind. At the time, Oregon was still friendly to Republicans—disgraced Republican Bob Packwood still held the Senate seat Democrat Ron Wyden has occupied for the past 20 years. Sometime during these protests, a member of George H.W. Bush’s administration dubbed the city “Little Beirut.” When, exactly, is hard to say—every time Bush or Vice President Dan Quayle came to Portland, protests erupted. The most intense protest—and the one that’s the most famous today thanks to being described by Chuck Palahniuk in Fugitives and Refugees—was in September 1990. Quayle came to Portland for a $2,500-per-person Republican fundraiser at the downtown Hilton on Monday, Sept. 24. While the vice president was raising money and support for Republican U.S. Rep. Denny Smith (not re-elected) inside the hotel, 300 protesters gathered outside. Flags were burned. A man took a shit on a photo of Quayle. Suitwearing Reed College students swallowed colored food dye and vomited red, white and, unintentionally, green. This was just one of four protests that greeted Bush and Quayle. The first, in 1989, was “the only [protest] that disrupted [Quayle’s] schedule,” the vice president’s press secretary, David Beckwith, bragged to The Oregonian. It may be 25 years in the past, but many of the city’s residents have embraced the nickname with T-shirts, bumper stickers, a compilation of Portland punk called Anarchy in Little Beirut, and the group B.E.I.R.U.T. (Boisterous Extremists for Insurrection against Republicans and other Unprincipled Thugs). There’s even a property management company named Little Beirut—by a veteran of the protests who now runs a successful business. “We didn’t want to name it ‘Swanson Management,’” says John Swanson, owner of Little Beirut Properties. “We wanted something more representative of the city’s iconoclastic and rebellious history. It’s just a shame more people these days don’t know about that time.” Here’s what he means. Chiles Center, October 1984 Ronald Reagan received Portland’s hospitality when he stumped at the University of Portland’s Chiles Center en route to one of the most lopsided re-elections in electoral history. Per Oregonian accounts, political activists lined up outside with coffins, a replica of a cruise missile and photos of victims of El Salvadorean death squads. Oh, and someone spilled a quart of human blood over the entrance to the arena. A few protesters bought tickets and infiltrated the arena, only to be escorted out by members of the Secret Service. 24
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BY JO HN LO C A N T H I
The Shipyard, September 1988 Four years later, Reagan’s vice president made a stop in Portland on the campaign trail. Republican nominee George H.W. Bush was greeted by more than 1,000 booing union workers when he visited the Northwest Marine Iron Works on Swan Island. It was the most hostile crowd he encountered on the campaign trail, but merely a prelude to what Portland had in store for the nebbish WASP once he was elected. Little Beirut I, September 1989 The first Little Beirut protest took place when Vice President Quayle came to Portland to defend the Bush administration’s inaction during a failed Panamanian coup and to make it harder for victims of statutory rape to access federal funding for rape victims. Unsurprisingly, he was greeted by 150 protesters. “Out of respect for the office of vice president, there should have been at least 500,” Quayle reportedly joked. Where other protests had a singular goal, these protests were over a grab bag of issues ranging from the U.S. government’s despicable policy in Latin America on abortion to the government’s despicable handling of the AIDS crisis. The crowds were a healthy mix of political protesters and good, old-fashioned anarchists. It was the largest protest Quayle had encountered during his first nine months in office, and the only one to disrupt his schedule as protesters blocked his way to the Hilton downtown. Over 20 protesters were arrested and a police van transporting several protesters crashed into a pickup truck on its way to the precinct—this appears to have been an honest error and not a rough ride. Little Beirut II, May 1990 The following May, President George H.W. Bush himself came to town to help raise funds for then-Republican gubernatorial candidate Dave Frohnmayer. Three hundred protesters greeted the well-heeled Republicans with eggs, fruit, spit and purportedly some explosive devices, along with burning American flags. The protest ended in a brawl as 75 police officers in riot gear descended on the crowd. Twenty-five protesters were arrested. Little Beirut III, September 1990 Quayle returned in September 1990 to help raise funds for Oregon Republican candidates and to support an education bill. (This was two years before the American people found out the incumbent vice president couldn’t spell “potato.”) As if hearing his taunt from the year before, there were twice as many protesters outside the Hilton this time. A group of 24 Reed students, including Igor Vamos of the Yes Men fame, dubbed themselves the Guerrilla The-
ater of the Absurd. They put on their finest suits and ties, swallowed food coloring and ipecac to vomit up red, white and blue—their plan was thwarted because their stomach acid turned the blue food coloring green. This agitprop art display was dubbed the Reverse Peristalsis Painters. Fifty-one were arrested at this protest, including art gallery and coffee shop owner Anne Hughes, who wound up winning a $25,000 settlement from the city due to her treatment at the hands of the Portland Police Bureau. This event led to Mayor Bud Clark writing a strongly worded letter to the Police Bureau. Little Beirut IV, September 1991 By this time, the nickname was known—The Oregonian’s preview article asked if Bush was ready for “another day in Beirut.” Wild protests having become popular in the city, a group decided to give them live-ish coverage. In fall 1991, President Bush came back. A new group called “Flying Focus Video Collective” and Portland Cable Access teamed up to provide live coverage of the protests outside the Oregon Convention Center. Portlanders could finally see one of the Little Beirut protests on TV. An anchorman in shorts introduced it as such: “It’s a beautiful day in Portland. It’s a beautiful day for a protest.” The broadcast was mostly hamstrung by its need for access to cable, but people were delivering footage by bicycle from all around the protest. “This was actually our first and only live broadcast because of the unintended consequences,” says Dan Handelman, co-founder of FFVC and Portland Copwatch. “Portland police contacted us afterwards, asking us to turn over the footage. We thought they were just going to use it to find more people to arrest.” After consulting its lawyer, Flying Focus didn’t turn over any footage. But it also decided against another live protest broadcast. The Portland Police Bureau arrested 30 protesters, according to Oregonian accounts at the time, including one person who allegedly threw a muffin.
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BITE-SIZED PORTLAND CULTURE NEWS.
SEN BYE: Pok Pok founder Andy Ricker’s Sen Yai Thai noodle house on Southeast Division Street will close May 9. Some of Sen Yai’s dishes will move to Ricker’s Whiskey Soda Lounge, including breakfast items Sen Yai had already discontinued. Alongside rising rent, Ricker told a local magazine writer that Portlanders’ preconceived notions of “ethnic food” as “cheap food” were a major reason for Sen Yai’s closure. The restaurant hovered in the $10-to-$13 range for its noodles, similar to other Thai eateries such as Mee Sen, Tarad Thai and Paa Dee, and lower in price than Ricker’s own Pok Pok. Sen Yai will be succeeded in its Division space by another upscale ethnic-ish food spot—a “tequila taco honky-tonk rock-’n’-roll joint” called Honky Tonk Taco House, backed by Clyde Common’s RICKER Nate Tilden. STARS GO OUT: Stars Cabaret Beaverton is likely to be gone soon. California-based strip-club chain Spearmint Rhino has conﬁrmed it’s in the process of buying the Southwest Lombard Avenue location. The Stars Cabaret strip-club chain is currently facing an $8 million civil rights case for unlawful sexual harassment of minors. Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian, who is running for secretary of state, is seeking $4 million in damages for each of two teenage girls who danced at the Beaverton strip club when they were 13 and 15 years old, respectively. The Spearmint staﬀer WW reached by phone was unaware of abuse at the Stars location, conﬁrming only that Spearmint Rhino was in the process of buying the strip club club. Spearmint Rhino already has a location in Portland, on the eastern edge of the city. TIME FOR A HOME: Time-Based Art has a home now. The Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, host of the annual TBA Festival, is moving to a 16,000-square-foot space on Northeast Hancock Street. For the ﬁrst time in years, PICA’s oﬃces and the TBA Festival will be in the same spot, after hopping from Washington High School in Southeast to Con-Way in Northwest to the Redd back in Southeast. A philanthropic gift from PICA board member Allie Furlotti funded the move, and Furlotti also found the building, which used to be a skate park. CHILD’S PLAY: A coalition of nonproﬁts is banding together to bring a new all-ages music venue to Portland. A joint project of My Voice Music, PDX Pop Now, KBOO and WW’s Give!Guide has launched an “all-ages advocacy group,” with the goal of opening a multipurpose concert and arts space, modeled after Seattle’s volunteer-run Vera Project. The group will throw a series of awareness-raising pop-up concerts throughout the year, beginning with an oﬃcial launch party May 22 at Los Prados Event Hall in St. Johns, featuring performances by the Doo-Doo Funk AllStars, rapper Neo G-Yo, and others.
J E F F R E Y- G R AY- B R A N D S T E D
Traditional taste, contemporary nourishment. The only all gluten-free, Middle Eastern lunch buffet in town. Delicious vegan and meat dishes. Signature cocktails with Middle Eastern herbal infusions. Join us!
GO: Your primary election ballot should have arrived by mail. Fill it out as directed on pages 8-23.
WEDNESDAY MAY 4
WHAT TO DO THIS WEEK IN ARTS & CULTURE
Fran’s smoked sea salt caramel in milk chocolate, and a Black Forest Berry Honest Tea
Dwight D. Eisenhower
[CUBAN DANCE] The first Cuban company to come to Portland for a White Bird show, Malpaso’s contemporary and acrobatic ensemble pieces are heavy with floor work and duets in which dancers pretzel their limbs around each other. Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway, 503-248-4335. 8 pm. $26-$72.
John F. Kennedy
Lyndon Baines Johnson
[ELECTRO EXPLORER] The artist born as Keiran Hebdan has been one of the most mesmerizing producers of electronic music for almost 20 years now. Expect anything from digital raga to ambient house, plus a hypnotic synchronized light spectacle. Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St., 503-284-8686. $20-$25. 8 pm. 21+.
Le Big Mac
THURSDAY MAY 5
Richard M. Nixon
Do What You Love Comedy Showcase
[FUNNY HOUR] The only happyhour comedy show in Portland, this new monthly series from Earthquake Hurricane masterminds Alex Falcone and Curtis Cook debuts with sets from Bri Pruett, Matt Monroe, Caitlin Weierhauser and David Mascorro. Bar opens at 5:30. WeWork Custom House, 220 NW 8th Ave., bit.ly/1NiErqt. 6:15 pm. $15.
TV dinners, eaten in front of the television
Ninja Squirrel Sriracha hot sauce
FRIDAY MAY 6 Kid Congo Powers & the Pink Monkey Birds
[PUNK] Kid Congo just issued his latest, loungy screed, La Araña es La Vida, filled with rock ’n’ roll suited to soundtrack a John Waters flick, but exuding enough scruffy charm to remind listeners Congo has traced punk’s lifeline while playing in the Gun Club, the Cramps and the Bad Seeds. Dante’s, 350 W Burnside St., 503-226-6630. 9 pm. $10. 21+.
CAN YOU MATCH THE MODERN AMERICAN PRESIDENT TO HIS OR HER FAVORITE FOOD?
George H.W. Bush
Waffles with strawberries
Free Comic Book Day
[NERDS] Hey! Free comics! Cherry pick your free stuff at one of the best arthouse comic shops in the the nation. Floating World is handing out free copies of Heavy Meddle, a collaboration between underground publishers Teenage Dinosaur, Snakebomb, Sparkplug and Gridlords. Floating World Comics, 400 NW Couch St., 503-241-0227. Noon-3 pm.
Pretzels New England fish chowder Pork rinds
George “Dubya” Bush
SATURDAY MAY 7
SUNDAY MAY 8 Mother’s Day Viking Pancake Breakfast
Hillary Clinton Meatloaf
see answers on page 50
[MOMMY TIME] Moms get Champagne for free once a year at the mighty Norse Hall—the most impressive central-city lodge you almost certainly didn’t even know existed. But everybody gets super-cheap pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausages and lingonberry jam. Think of it as IKEA with a warm heart and a brutal history. Norse Hall, 111 NE 11th Ave, 503-236-3401. 8:30 am-1 pm. $7 adults, $4 kids (hint: Don’t let your mom pay).
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FOOD & DRINK = WW Pick. Highly recommended. By MATTHEW KORFHAGE. Editor: MARTIN CIZMAR. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. See page 3 for submission instructions.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 4 A Case Study at Case Study
Case Study will offer free cocktails and blind tasting flights with Nicaraguan coffee made from different beans and roasts, then give a talk on how such things affect the taste of coffee. Case Study Coffee, 1422 NE Alberta St., 503-477-8221. 6:30 pm. Free.
The Pickled Piper Beer Release Party
Sooo…the Unipiper has a beer now. You’d think maybe a smoked scotch ale, something on the dark side? But no: Green Dragon has instead collaborated with Portland’s resident flaming Darth Vader bagpiper to make a kettle-soured, dry-hopped cucumber gose infused with pickling spice. Green Dragon, 928 SE 9th Ave., 503-517-0660. 5 pm. Free.
FRIDAY, MAY 6 Vertical Reserve Box Set Release: Kriek
Only 100 of these four-pack 20122015 verticals of Cascade Brewing’s cherry-oak-tinged sour kriek will be made, and once the 100th bearded man departs with his complete set of 2012-2015 krieks, you’re pretty much screwed until Cascade unleashes another four-pack vertical of a diﬀerent sour on June 3. Cascade Brewing Barrel House, 939 SE Belmont St., 503-265-8603. Noon. Free.
1. Little Bird
SUNDAY, MAY 8
2218 NE Broadway, 503-477-9521, chesapdx.com. Ibérico pork rib conﬁt that’s a marvel of softness and crispness. $$$.
Mother’s Day Viking Pancake Breakfast
Moms get Champagne free once a year at the mighty Norse Hall— the most impressive central-city lodge you almost certainly didn’t even know existed. But everybody gets super-cheap pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausages and lingonberry jam. Think of it as IKEA with a warm heart and a brutal history. Norse Hall, 111 NE 11th Ave, 503-2363401. 8:30 am-1 pm. $7 adults, $4 kids (hint: Don’t let your mom pay).
215 SW 6th Ave., 503-688-5952, littlebirdbistro.com. A $5 double-stacked brie burger and $1.50 oysters, all Sunday. $-$$$.
2340 NE Sandy Blvd., 503-446-7373, pastaworks.com. Rotisserie chicken, Italian-style. $$.
609 SE Ankeny St., 503-894-9021, marukinportland.com. Tonkotsu shoyu, paitan shio and miso ramen. All terriﬁc. $.
5. Wiz Bang Bar
126 SW 2nd Ave., 503-384-2150, saltandstraw.com. An amazing Ritz pie sundae, with apples conﬁt. $.
Trump vs. Clinton, 2016 Both parties’ presumptive nominees have wine. We drank them.
BY MATTHEW KOR FHAGE email@example.com
Trump Blanc de Blanc 2009, $26
Trump does not drink. Drinking is for losers— also Trump’s big brother drank himself to death, inflicting serious psychological damage on little Donny, who seeks to pay it forward. But Trump has a winery in Virginia, near Monticello where presidents are made. Trump does not want to give people Champagne from the French, when Trump can make French-style sparkling himself. This Champagne style, Blanc de Blanc, is the Trumpiest of sparklers, the white Champagne’s white Champagne, with a suspiciously loose cork and a funny finish. It’s a classy bottle—Trump classy—and if you were going to ask which Champagne cost a lot of money, you’d look right at Trump’s bottle and you’d say: “That’s a classy bottle. That’s an expensivelooking bottle of Methode Champenoise right there. LUXURIOUS!” It’s got cursive on the front and estate-grown chardonnay grapes. But more than the “bright green apple, lemon notes, pear and brioche” the bottle advertised, we got a hot nose, an acid finish and a quality one online review described as “Botox-y,” and another described positively as a “yeast attack.” It’s like the classiest blue-collar prosecco you could ever find at the grocery store, perfectly quaffable. It goes down easy but tastes like a headache. Also, we were expecting far more gold leaf. 28
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Clinton Vineyards Victory White, $18.50, and Clinton Vineyards Seyval Naturel, $30
Clinton Vineyards’ wine—which comes from the Hudson River region of New York, the Clintons’ adopted home state—is in no way related to Hillary or Bill. Hillary remains unaccountable for it, and would, we imagine, not take credit. The Victory White is the vinological equivalent of a super PAC, made on the Clintons’ behalf every year there’s a Clinton vying for the White House. The Victory White has a known quality of Rust Belt wines that can be described, euphemistically, as “foxy.” This is also a word sometimes used to describe Bill Clinton, but here it refers to a flavor—present in both Clinton wines—that one of our tasters described as “kind of like someone peed on a skunk.” Hoo, boy. The Seyval grape used in both of these wines is a hybrid of French wine grapes and the hardy American grape stock that can handle the harsh froideur of upstate New York. It is a survivor’s grape—not as palatable in many ways, but able to endure countless indignities. The wine, in short, tastes awful, with a faint tinge of corruption—but let us reiterate that the Clintons have complete deniability here.
Princes of Frogtown NUESTRA COCINA’S NEW SIDECART SERVES UP FINE STREET TACOS. I know I’m not the only one who feels taunted by the food cart in front of Taqueria Nueve just south of Southeast Stark Street. After a long-delayed opening, it serves lunch only in unreliable fits and starts—a brisket-taco dream constantly deferred. Well, we’ve got a new sidecart now. Nuestra Cocina—the decade-old Division Street Mexican restaurant that’s likely still the city’s finest—is running a terrific taco cart in Slabtown called Frogtown Tacos, named after the tiny L.A. neighborhood. It’s been open for five months, half as long as T9 has been promising al pastor. As a business plan, the Frogtown cart is Nueve’s opposite. Conceived as a temporary pop-up to benefit a family member in legal trouble, it instead operates with heartening consistency. It’s open every weekday for lunch, with a steady line of construction workers and firemen alongside fashionable graphic designers and pale-faced engineers wounded by each blush of sun. Cocina co-owners Benjamin Gonzales and Shannon Dooley- Gonzales have a friend with a house there, it turns out, and so the cart operates under the second-story deck, serving up street tacos for the same $3 as the very
cheapest ones at gringo favorite Por Que No. Except these tacos are heaped generously with lovely meat and garnish on fresh, handmade tortillas; two handily satisfy a light appetite, and three will stuff you. And they’re goddamn gold. Among the six-deep menu, my favorite is the lovely Yucatecan-style cochinita pibil, its rich and smoky pulled pork brightened with beautifully acidic habanero-lime salsa and just-crisp pickled onion. But the vegan nopales taco is equally savory and acidic, umamified with mushroom under a salsa made with roasted tomato and serrano. That same tomato-rich ranchera spices up the carne asada taco. The pollo pibil and chorizo verde come with a piquant chile de arbol that stabs the tongue with lancing heat, then massages it with warm depth. Only the pork adobada cecina—diced thin, and too thin on flavor—was a disappointment. As a bonus, the cart is located across the street from the Altitude Mt. Hood Meadows store, which has a still-secret bar with two taps—most recently Barley Brown’s Pallet Jack and Pfriem IPA for $5 apiece. It’s a guilt-free spot for a cheeky lunchtime pint, and they don’t mind if you bring your tacos. MATTHEW KORFHAGE. EAT: Frogtown Tacos, 1616 NW Northrup St., facebook.com/frogtowntacos. 11 am-3 pm Monday-Friday. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
= WW Pick. Highly recommended.
Prices listed are sometimes for advance ticket sales. At-the-door increases and socalled convenience charges may apply. Event lineups are subject to change after WW’s press deadlines. Editor: MATTHEW SINGER. TO BE CONSIDERED FOR LISTINGS, go to wweek.com/ submitevents and follow submission directions. All shows should be submitted two weeks or more in advance of event. Press kits, CDs and especially vinyl can be sent to Music Desk, WW, 2220 NW Quimby St., Portland, OR 97210. Please include show or release date information with all physical mailings. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Fax: 243-1115.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 4 Har Mar Superstar
[ELECTRO-SOUL] Sean Tillmann, of ’90s indie-rock bands Sean Na Na and Calvin Krime, started his Har Mar persona as a pudgy guy in his underwear shoving single dollar bills into his briefs as he danced around the stage before Strokes gigs. A decade later and the dude’s music has evolved into a soulful hodgepodge of synth pop and offbeat R&B. His latest, Best Summer Ever, is produced by Julian Casablancas, who also released the album on his label, Cult Records. It’s a collection of brilliant, perfectly executed pop you’d never expect from a onetime novelty act. CRIS LANKENAU. Dante’s, 350 W Burnside St. 9 pm. $15. 21+.
mesmerizing producers working within electronic music. With electro-acoustic sensibility and spacelounge grooves, the artist born Keiran Hebdan is famous on the festival circuit, having collaborated with the likes of Thom Yorke and Burial, and for a deep catalog of remixes for practically everyone in between. Recent Four Tet recordings range from the long-form electronic raga of 2015’s Morning/Evening to the ambient house of Beautiful Rewind and Pink. Live performances take his audience on a sonic expedition, augmented this time around with a hypnotic, synchronized light spectacle. WYATT SCHAFFNER. Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St. 9 pm. $20. 21+.
CONT. on page 33 CO U R T E SY O F A N DY S O M O GY
Four Tet, Ben UFO
[U.K. ELECTROJAZZ] For the past two records, Four Tet is one of the most
Fables of the Relocation AESOP ROCK’S WESTWARD EXPANSION. BY MATTHEW SCHON FELD
FIVE PORTLAND PROTEST SONGS Sleater-Kinney, “Combat Rock”
Swiping an album title from the Clash and employing a militant reggae march, Portland’s fiercest trio were among the first bands to call bullshit on the blind patriotism of the post-9/11 Bush years, asking bluntly, “Since when is skepticism un-American?”
2 Derroll Adams, “Portland Town” Written in 1957, Adams’ haunting folk standard presents the horror of war as simple math: He’s got three children; each gets sent off to fight; now he has none. It’s more effective than any march or rally could ever be. 3 The Thermals, “An Ear for Baby” Really, the whole of 2006’s The Blood, the Body, the Machine counts as one of the great statements of protest to come out of Portland, raging tunefully against an America that, at the time, was beginning to resemble a Christian theocracy. Sadly, it hasn’t aged a day. “Dig the ditches deep! We’re gonna need a new border!” shouts Hutch Harris in the guise of an imperialistic leader. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? 4 The Gossip, “Standing in the Way of Control” Beth Ditto and company’s biggest single is such a dance-floor wrecking ball it’s easy to miss the song was a reaction to the government’s attempt to outlaw same-sex marriage. “I wrote the chorus to try and encourage people not to give up,” Ditto once said. Given the progress that’s since been made on that particular front, it seems to have worked. 5 Vinnie Dewayne, “Page 37” Dewayne opens one of his most poignant tracks by describing a shooting in North Portland, but the St. Johns MC knows violence doesn’t happen in a vacuum—particularly in a system that’s gamed against a young black man like him. “Give me a clean slate, too late, I understand,” he raps, “these cuffs on my hands, from the jump was a plan.” MATTHEW SINGER.
Aesop Rock has always sounded like New York. He and his Definitive Jux clique defined the Big Apple’s rap underground in the early 2000s, delivering intricately woven stories told with unmatched agility and a bottomless vocabulary over sprawling, industrial production that seemed to reflect the rhythms of the city itself. But any place can grow stifling after a while. So, at age 31, the MC born Ian Bavitz uprooted himself and came west. Shaken by a personal tragedy and a looming sense of complacency, he wanted to challenge himself, to see if he could continue to grow and mature as an artist in an unfamiliar environment. That’s how he wound up living in a barn in rural Oregon. “I lost a best friend in ’08, but it seemed like once a year since then I’ve had some adversity in my life that prevented me from ever really getting fully on my feet,” Rock says. “It just hit a point where it felt like one thing after another. I rented a barn for a year just to kind of clear my head, live cheap and try to be creative.” In that barn—and in Portland, where he quietly spent another year retooling—life finally settled long enough for Rock to collect his thoughts. As a result, his new album, The Impossible Kid, may be his most personal and inward-looking work yet. It took a few years, but it seems leaving New York to live untied along the West Coast paid off. “I’ve been able to see if I could take this homegrown craft and really apply it even when my surroundings continue to change,” says the 39-year-old Long Island-born wordsmith. “In some ways it has kept [my writing] from getting stale, but I also don’t have that security blanket of being in my comfort zone.” Naturally, The Impossible Kid finds Rock in an introspective mood. “Ultimately, the stuff I was writing was fairly reflective, possibly a side effect of looking down the barrel of 40 years on this planet,” he says. “I think I’ve just been thinking over my life
a bunch and trying to write songs about it.” That’s evident on “Rings,” the album’s first official single, in which Rock addresses his younger self when he was a fresh-faced art-school graduate battling for purpose in a daunting city: “It’s off to a school where it’s all that you do/ Being trained and observed by a capable few/ Back in New York, five peeps and a dog/ In a two-bedroom doing menial jobs.” But while four decades and seven albums may have weathered the underground heavyweight, he has yet to falter. Rock’s most recent work may be his most ambitious, reflecting a curiosity and daring as potent as it was a decade ago. As with 2012’s Skelethon, Rock produced every track on The Impossible Kid himself. As an artist and perfectionist, it’s an empowering move. His style on boards is akin to that of Def Jux partner El-P and longtime collaborator Blockhead, full of feral synths and dynamic bass licks bolstered by weighty, corporal drums. Taking full rein of production heightens the stakes to eliminating any creative crutch that Rock might lean on. “If my name is on it, I want the listener to know that I really had my hand in almost every element of what you’re hearing,” he says. “I want to feel like I really crafted something.” Along with stretching the boundaries of his sound, Rock has begun to experiment visually as well. In the week leading up to The Impossible Kid’s release last month, he offered fans a 48-minute album stream that plays as a soundtrack to a shot-for-shot, stopmotion re-creation of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining. The animation, directed by Rob Shaw of Portland’s Bent Image Lab, acts as a warped representation of Aesop’s life of late, as he retreated to the solitude of the Pacific Northwest in search of creative freedom. Unlike Jack Torrance, he didn’t go insane and try to murder his family. Instead, he found a new perspective and breathed fresh energy into his art—and discovered that the only person he must answer to is himself. “I wanted to be responsible for all the failures and successes I could come up with,” he says, “so even if it was bad, it was me.” SEE IT: Aesop Rock plays Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St., with Rob Sonic, DJ Zone and Homeboy Sandman, on Saturday, May 7. 9 pm. Sold out . All ages. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
FRIDAY, MAY 6
Joan Shelley, Michael Hurley
Kid Congo Powers & the Monkey Birds
[CRAMPING UP] Even if guitarist Kid Congo Powers hadn’t been part of three reasonably signiﬁcant punk-adjacent troupes, including the Cramps, his sense of style has been acute enough for Vogue to dedicate space to its notability. The barrio-infused band that Kid Congo has been leading around for about a decade just issued its latest, loungey screed, La Araña Es la Vida, ﬁlled with rock ’n’ roll suited to soundtracking a John Waters ﬂick. It exudes enough scruﬀy charm to remind one that Kid Congo has ostensibly traced punk’s lifeline—and maybe to conclude that his band should team up with circa 2005 Black Lips to storm America’s barrooms. DAVE CANTOR. Dante’s, 350 W Burnside St. 9 pm. $10. 21+.
King Black Acid, Cat Hoch, Daydream Machine
[PSYCH ROYALTY] When Daniel John Riddle—the once and future King Black Acid—came back from the wilderness to warp minds at February’s Sabertooth Festival, there was some question as to whether the spacerock legend was indeed returning for another full-ﬂedged campaign. But this evening’s concert evidently marks the debut proper of the early Sat-Con mainstay’s latest regime en route to new recordings this summer. It’s too early to tell whether he’ll push forward the more streamlined approach of his late ’00s Sacred Heart lineup, but considering that the octet he assembled for the Sabertooth stage will be expanded by the Resolectrics’ Tate Peterson and multi-instrumentalistto-the-stars Paul Brainard, we can’t imagine the resulting soundscape will be much smaller. JAY HORTON. Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi Ave. 9 pm. $10 advance, $12 day of show. 21+.
[FOLK] Kentuckian Joan Shelley sings in a bell-clear alto with smoky, upper-register ﬂights—light and airy, yet weighted by sadness. Her music evokes a pregnant stillness, like a peaceful forest nonetheless thrumming with life. Fans of Sandy Denny or Judy Collins should investigate, but Shelley’s too sharp for her music to be a mere throwback. Opener Michael Hurley will provide a suitably gruﬀ balance to Shelley’s airiness. JEFF ROSENBERG. The Old Church, 1422 SW 11th Ave. 8 pm. $12 advance, $15 day of show. All ages.
Purple Reign: A Tribute to Prince with Strange Babes
[RAVE UN2 THE JOY ETERNAL] As the world continues to process the death of Prince and honor his remarkable legacy, something tells me we’re going to see a lot less live-band tributes than we did for, say, David Bowie. Unless you’re like Portland’s Erotic City, which has dedicated years to studying his music and moves, those songs are hard to pull oﬀ, so it’s probably best to stick with celebrating the recorded versions. Smartly, that’s the focus of this tribute night, put on by Monqui and XRAY. Strange Babes— the DJ alias of Kathy Foster, Maggie Vail and Jen Olesen—will spin the tunes that got the whole world just a-freakin’, so we can all stop bumming for a few hours and hit the ﬂoor, just like the man himself would’ve wanted. MATTHEW SINGER. Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St. 8 pm. $10. 21+.
SATURDAY, MAY 7 Monarques, Minden, Boone Howard
[HERE COMES THE SUN KING] Possessed of a shimmering, ’60s-steeped, pure pop majesty that distilled the best licks of their forebears into utterly addictive, wholly distinct dance-party starters, the
Monarques wowed SXSW and Prairie Home Companion alike in 2010, and looked set to make the world their sock hop following the release of long-gestating debut album Let’s Make Love Come True two years later. Instead, as frontman-songwriter (and former Oh Captain, My Captain skipper) Josh Spacek focused his attentions on music licensing company Needle Drop, the local combo’s extended hiatus threatened permanence before the recent surprise announcement that the boys had not only put the band back together but promised this ﬁrst show in four years would present new material showcasing a diﬀerent direction: “More challenging. More depth. More complex.” With Spacek set to leave for France this fall regardless, the soon-to-be-recorded sophomore album will be more swan song than comeback, but let’s savor every unexpected moment nonetheless. Apres Monarques, le deluge. JAY HORTON. Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi Ave. 9 pm. $10. 21+.
SUNDAY, MAY 8 Mayer Hawthorne
[NEW OLD SOUL] The Detroit-bred leader of Los Angeles’ soul revival movement, Mayer Hawthorne spent his early musical years DJing and producing hip-hop beats in the famed Midwest city before moving to the coast. A throwback-style musician who essentially just decided to start making the music he was always sampling, Hawthorne brings to Portland the sounds of his recently released fourth studio album, Man About Town, which sounds like Sly Stone and Shuggie Otis joined up in an extremely high-end studio. In a city where the likes of Charles Bradley and Ural Thomas routinely sell out big rooms, Hawthorne and his band should ﬁnd an ecstatic crowd tonight. PARKER HALL. Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark St., No. 110. 8 pm. $35-$75. All ages.
CONT. on page 36
BESIDES YOUR FAMILY… AND YOUR HAPPINESS… AND WORLD PEACE,
ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT THING GOING ON RIGHT NOW! MARTHAS
CHRISTELLE DE CASTRO
Santigold, Leileki47 [GOLD MINE] Santi White likes to take her time. The Philadelphia singer, whose last name turns from white to gold for her stage name, recently released 99¢, her first album in four years, and only her third since 2008. It’s a tightly crafted, eclectic collection of unwavering energy, confirming what most already knew: Santigold may be the most versatile artist around. She effortlessly dances between four or five genres, often in the same song, her voice shifting to fit everything from soul to hip-hop to reggae to punk to electronic music, backed by grimy bass synths, soulful trumpets and heavy guitar. Bouncy single “Can’t Get Enough of Myself” highlights her vocal chops better than anything else, evoking both Aretha Franklin and Beyoncé—if they could sound totally natural singing chamber reggae rap. Tuesday’s show is a makeup date for a gig she canceled last month due to illness. SOPHIA JUNE. Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside St., 225-0047. 8:30 pm Tuesday, May 10. Sold out. All ages.
COMING MAY 9th: A NEW PORTLAND SANDWICH TRADITION BEGINS @ MARTHAS Portland’s Happiest Happy Hours Daily From 4–6pm
MARTHAS 1300 SE Stark St. @ Revolution Hall marthaspdx.com :: 503.288.3895 7 days: 7am–10pm Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
!A PLACE FOR FRIENDS AND FUN!
COURTESY OF ARRINGTON DE DIONYSO
No Cover Charge
A scene from Reak: Trance Music and Possession in West Java.
Q&A: Arrington de Dionyso Teaching yourself to speak Indonesian by translating William Blake poems might not seem the best way to wend a path toward inclusion in the country’s ritual ceremonies, but that’s the path Arrington de Dionyso trekked. After the dissolution of his band, Old Time Relijun, the Olympia, Wash., musician picked up the bass clarinet and put together Malaikat dan Singa, an American group fusing the odder moments of post-punk’s rhythmic ideals with Indonesian ritual music, all in service of finding a transcendent instant of cross-cultural harmony. He may have found it. The documentary Reak: Trance Music and Possession in West Java follows de Dionyso’s participation in a ceremony tucked away in a region of Indonesia removed from big-city concerns. Willamette Week spoke to de Dionyso ahead of the film’s screening in Portland. Read the full Q&A at wweek.com. DAVE CANTOR. A Northwest musician goes searching for the ultimate trance.
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WW: Have you taken part in a bunch of ceremonies like the one depicted in the film? Arrington de Dionyso: I’ve actually been to quite a few of them. This one was really special. There was something raw and visceral that I haven’t always found. Some of the other ones are almost theatrical presentations. This one felt a lot more connected with people’s daily life. What’s a typical ceremony like? What’s happening in the film doesn’t conform to an easy definition. As much as it’s a spiritual expression, there’s also an element of entertainment. There’s an element of sport, we could say. The boys participating in it are like a team. They have matching T-shirts. They get together and as they perform, they become possessed by a transcendent nature spirit. How central to your music and art is religion? Any music I play is going to be spiritual music. When I think of religion, I think of people laying out what they believe and what they don’t believe. From my experience with this exchange and the music that was happening, nobody really had anything to say about what they believed. It’s just about feeling the spirit and being in touch with that spirit. A lot of what’s happening in the film, it could be anywhere in the world, in a way. It kind of looks like a hardcore punk mosh pit or people speaking in tongues. Does taking part in these types of ceremonies give you the same feeling as playing in Old Time Relijun or Malaikat dan Singa? When I play music, I play music to find the trance. People can tell that I’m coming from that place, and it’s something they’re familiar with. It’s exactly the kind of thing I’m looking for musically. If I’m playing in a free jazz setting in the U.S. or Europe, I’m still trying to get to that space. In this setting, they not only get to that place, they have a larger way of understanding it—it’s more integrated into their lives. It’s not just a concert you show up to. SEE IT: Reak: Trance Music and Possession in West Java will screen at 5th Avenue Cinema, 510 SW Hall St., on Thursday, May 5. 8 pm. Free. All ages. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Lucius plays Wonder Ballroom on Monday, May 9.
Sales, Black Belt Eagle Scout
[ELECTRO-POP] Pitched somewhere between the xx and Beach House, Orlando duo Sales occupies a bedroom-cum-rehearsal space that probably still smells like a teen going through puberty. Lauren Morgan’s woozy, guileless vocals are like the kid-sister imitation of Youth Lagoon’s Trevor Powers, and her wide-eyed naiveté comes off as chic paired with Jordan Shih’s intricate fretwork, which brings to mind Matt Mondanile of Real Estate and Ducktails. CRIS LANKENAU. The Analog Cafe, 720 SE Hawthorne Blvd. $12. All ages.
TV Girl, Vektroid
[ELECTRONIC ARTISTRY] For fans of internet music and 4chan trolls alike, Vektroid is a household name thanks to her album, Floral Shoppe, recorded under the Macintosh Plus alias. Closer to one of DJ Screw’s mixtapes than Washed Out, the album was the first of many that came to define a genre of woozy, sample-based muzak known as vaporwave. Few artists under this tag have the dedication to carry the banner into the live arena, but Ramona Andra Xavier’s star power enables her to transgress disparate influences into a powerful audio-visual statement. Embodying Kurzweil singularity at her core and with a hyperreal live set to boot, Vektroid is one of Cascadia’s most captivating musical entities. WYATT SCHAFFNER. The Liquor Store, 3341 SE Belmont St. 9 pm. Free-$8. 21+.
Pokey LaFarge, the Cactus Blossoms
[OLD-SOUL AMERICANA] The sounds of America are as diverse as they are definitive. We turned old British folk songs into Appalachian bluegrass, claimed ragtime and invented jazz. Somehow, the young St. Louis multi-instrumentalist Pokey LaFarge incorporates all these elements of American musical history into his folksy sound and old-fashioned persona. HILARY SAUNDERS. Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St. 8:30 pm. $20 advance, $25 day of show. 21+.
MONDAY, MAY 9 Deicide, Season of Suffering, Godenied, Boudica
[DEATH METAL] There must be something in the water in Florida, because time stopped somewhere around 1992 for the Southern death-metal giants of the Morrisound Recording era. Deicide, the band usually seen as something of the ’NSync to Cannibal Corpse’s Backstreet Boys, has been creating variations on the theme of “ripping death metal” with Groundhog’s Day consistency since the mid’80s. Frontman Glen Benton’s
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
once infamous anti-Christian antics have toned down—he’s no longer branding an inverted cross onto his forehead—but still expect Neanderthal-level stage witticisms aplenty. WALKER MACMURDO. Bossanova Ballroom, 722 E Burnside St., 206-7630. 6 pm. $17 advance, $20 day of show. All ages.
[PSYCH] Swedish psych-rockers Dungen took five years to shake up the old paradigm of principal songwriter Gustav Ejstes’ dictatorship. The band’s approach has softened into a democratic collective, with last year’s Allas Sak being written and recorded as a full band, the sound rounded into something more controlled and mellow and painted a bit more precisely than previous efforts— like when Peter Green left Fleetwood Mac and Buckingham Nicks ushered in a communal authorship of pop. CRIS LANKENAU. Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi Ave. 9 pm. $15 advance, $17 day of show. 21+.
Lucius, Margaret Glaspy
[MUSICAL TWINNING] The two frontwomen of Lucius dress the same, wear their hair the same and do their makeup the same. And on the band’s debut album, Wildewoman , Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig often sing in unison. But while the aesthetic is the same on Lucius’ newest album, Good Grief, Wolfe and Laessig sing more distant harmonies, while the rest of the band searches for more modern themes and sounds, challenging the ’60s girl-group vibe they previously rocked so well. HILARY SAUNDERS. Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St. 8:30 pm. $20. 21+.
TUESDAY, MAY 10 Blaqk Audio, Night Riots, Charming Liars
[(AF)IT-CROWD] An electro act featuring the starrier half of aging goth-punk idols AFI, Blaqk Audio indulges a predictably embarrassing over-commitment. But while it’s never clear whether the fitful project would’ve reached our ears without the notoriety accompanying Davey Havok and Jade Puget’s day jobs, there’s something sorta affecting about two honest-to-God rock stars so determined to invest emotive meaning into each dance-floor sub-anthem. Layering synths upon synths and cranking up theatricality to match the manic beats, new album Material plays on the pair’s hitmaking proficiency, and the few major missteps seem designed. JAY HORTON. Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside St. 8 pm. $20. 21+.
CLASSICAL, JAZZ & WORLD Avishai Cohen Quartet
[YOUNG LION] A bearded Israeli whose stream-of-consciousness trumpet solos evoke easy comparisons to Miles Davis’ early-1980s work—if that music involved less cocaine and glitter—Avishai Cohen is one of his instrument’s most formidable young voices. A veteran of the SF Jazz Collective whose solo work is always earnest and personal, Cohen brings his band to Portland in support of his latest album. An intimate record ﬁt for alone time, Into the Silence is the sort of thing that ﬁnds its way onto your speakers only after the sun has gone down, when it captures your imagination during the day’s most introspective hours. Given this material and the choice, I’d catch the late show. Jimmy Mak’s, 221 NW 10th Ave. 7 and 9:30 pm Thursday, May 5. $20 general admission, $25 reserved seating. Under 21 permitted until 9:30 pm.
[ORGAN GOD] Joey DeFrancesco’s ﬁngers move so quickly across the keyboard of his organ, it’s hard to believe he doesn’t have to place them in an ice bath after each set. A hard-swinging cat who isn’t afraid to sit right in the groove, Joey D (as he is known throughout the jazz world) is the deﬁnition of a virtuoso—a remarkable instrumentalist who can imitate every one of the heroes that came before him, but whose own unique ﬂair on the black-and-whites will eventually have him labeled a legend himself. Just as soon as he gets enough gray hair, that is. PARKER HALL. Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie Ave. 8 pm Friday, May 6. $30 advance, $32 day of show. Under 21 permitted with legal guardian.
The Oregon Symphony Presents Back to the Future
[CLASSICAL SCI-FI] Back to the Future is an undisputed cinema classic, and even though Marty McFly and Doc Brown already traveled to 2015 and back in Back to the Future II, the Oregon Symphony is showing the ﬁlm this year in honor of that journey and the original’s 30th anniversary. Plus, Queens Symphony Orchestra conductor Constantine Kitsopoulos guests to lead the Oregon Symphony in performing the score in sync with the ﬁlm. Reportedly, a replica of the DeLorean will make an appearance, too. HILARY SAUNDERS. Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway, 248-4335. 7:30 pm Saturday, May 7. $40-$115. All ages.
[SOLO CELLO] Everybody does the live looping and layering thing with foot pedals these days, but cellist Zoe Keating pioneered the technique on cello around the turn of the century. Also a San Francisco tech geek and composer, Keating became famous not just as a solo performer but also a trailblazer in using email and social media to build audiences. She’s composed for ﬁlm, dance (including a recent Eugene Ballet performance) and radio, and performed with Imogen Heap, Amanda Palmer, Tears for Fears, Thomas Dolby John Vanderslice and myriad others. She was also involved in the birth of Portland Cello Project. Keating has recently become an advocate for artists who are routinely screwed by streaming services—all the more reason for her many Portland fans to warmly embrace her on this latest visit. BRETT CAMPBELL. Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie Ave. 8 pm Saturday, May 7. $18.50 advance, $20 day of show. Under 21 permitted with legal guardian.
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Hey Lover SINKING SHIPS
[GARAGE POP] Hey Lover never sounded incomplete as a duo. In fact, Hey Lover sounded like it could never be anything else. Guitarist Justin Varga and drummer Terah Beth Baltzer Varga, whose marriage and band are both about 10 years old, exploited the intimacy of their arrangement with spastic and elastic pop-punk songs that sounded like an extension of pair-bonded bliss: raw, tight, riotous and mega-fun. On Sinking Ships, the Portland band’s third album, the Vargas are joined by bass player Tim Janchar, and the result is another happy union. Janchar’s extra weight adds some cautious drift to Hey Lover’s sharp turns, and while there’s not quite as much thrilling danger in the mix, Sinking Ships is the band’s most convincing demonstration of pop prowess yet. The summery garage pop on the album would make fine bedfellows with the beach-bound party dogs of the contemporary Burger Records scene, but it also wouldn’t sound out of place in the mid-’90s Olympia scene that spawned Kicking Giant’s beautiful racket and Bangs’ anthemic rock ’n’ roll. But forget about the limits of time and space: Where songwriting chops meet a staunch commitment to good vibes, there you will find Hey Lover. CHRIS STAMM. SEE IT: Hey Lover plays Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water Ave., with the Lavender Flu and Mope Grooves, on Saturday, May 7. 9:30 pm. $8. 21+.
Dogheart REAL MOOD (Haircut) [POP GARAGE] Dogheart’s previous effort, What Burns the Best, delivered 10 songs of energetic, guitar-driven pop executed in the vein of the genre’s best-loved acts. The source material was easy to identify. There was the song that sounded like Gang of Four, the one stewed in swampy Gun Club voodoo, the Sebadoh sound-alike. Having found its bearings as a band, with Real Mood, the implication is that Dogheart has decided on a straight-up pop motif, and the current approach is full speed ahead. The majority of the EP’s six songs are syrupy sweet concoctions so infectious that the only thing keeping your finger from the repeat button is the knowledge that the next track offers more of the same compulsion-inducing sugar. While nothing in Dogheart’s repertoire is entirely original, the group takes direction from a stellar reserve of influences. “So Easy” borrows arrangement tricks from classic Motown, and the megaphonic vocals and pummeling snare-stomp on “Drag” are a speeding ticket waiting to happen. Jeff Bond’s production scrubs the scruff to a pleasingly polished sheen, suggesting that while Dogheart may have previously self-identified as a poppy garage act, it’s settled into much swankier digs. CRIS LANKENAU. SEE IT: Dogheart plays Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water Ave., with Ghost Girls and Surf Stoned, on Friday, May 6. 9:30 pm. $8. 21+. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Editor: Matthew Singer. TO HAVE YOUR EVENT LISTED, send show information at least two weeks in advance on the web at wweek.com/ submitevents. Press kits, CDs and especially vinyl can be sent to Music Desk, WW, 2220 NW Quimby St., Portland, OR 97210. Please include show or release date information with all physical mailings. Email: email@example.com. For more listings, check out wweek.com.
LAST WEEK LIVE
white eagle Saloon
836 N Russell St Luau Cinder and Rainbow Electric
The Secret Society
116 NE Russell St The Libertine Belles; The Saloon Ensemble
SAT. MAY 7 Aladdin Theater
3017 SE Milwaukie Ave Zoe Keating
3000 NE Alberta St Wanderlust Circus & 3 Leg Torso present A MOTHER’S DAY CIRCUS!
Alberta Street Pub 1036 NE Alberta St Dylan DiSalvio Band; Bitch’n, Beach Fire
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
1037 SW Broadway The Oregon Symphony Presents Back to the Future
1028 SE Water Ave. Hey Lover, The Lavender Flu, Mope Grooves
350 West Burnside THE SHRIKE, Tuesdays Project, Cellar Door, and When We Met
REMAKE REMODEL: There are people who think Beach House is boring. Arriving with an almost perfect dream-pop template nearly a decade ago, the group has steadily built out its sound from its drum machine and organ-drone core. Yet even as things changed, they also sort of stayed the same, with shows plagued by an hour of melancholy music that really does all sound the same. But its performance at a sold-out Crystal Ballroom on April 28 actually revealed a surprise: Beach House is a shoegaze band now. Rounded out by a drummer and bass player for most of the set, this live incarnation of Beach House occasionally skewed more toward My Bloody Valentine than Mazzy Star. Songs that float by on record were bolstered by a second guitar or the consistent buzz of a deep bassline. Singer Victoria Legrand, steady and composed on recordings, pushed her voice to its natural limit two or three times, even screaming at the end of old standout “Master of None.” Guitarist Alex Scally, who used to sit for entire shows, was mostly on his feet, mixing in layers of fuzz with his usual rainbow spirals of melody. Beach House’s confidence in its revised sound was also reflected in the stage show. The lighting was simple but effervescent, highlighting the main colors of the Beach House palette—deep greens, paisley purples, bright pink and soft gold. A twinkling star backdrop appeared for a few songs, including “Take Care” and “Space Song” (duh), which was also an unofficial cue for all the couples in the audience to hold each other close. Beach House has always been a band that inspires romantic devotion, but it was cool to see it get so loud on the coda of “Elegy to the Void”—members of the audience were actually covering their ears from the noise. MICHAEL MANNHEIMER. = ww Pick. Highly recommended.
wed. MAY 4 dante’s
350 West Burnside Har Mar Superstar
1507 SE César E. Chávez Blvd. The Summer Set
High water Mark Lounge
6800 NE MLK Ave Homebody (Denver) with Lubec, Dana Buoy, and Hands In
1001 SE Morrison St. TOUCH CONFERENCE
221 NW 10th Ave. Mel Brown Quartet; The Christopher Brown Quartet
4847 SE Division St, Miller and Sasser’s Twelve Dollar Band; Jake Ray and the Cowdog’s!
LaurelThirst Public House
2958 NE Glisan St Malachi Graham; Salo Panto, Urban Shaman
The Analog Cafe
720 SE Hawthorne Blvd. RVLS, Earth Anchor, Saving Aether & guests
2845 SE Stark St TOMMY ALEXANDER, KENT SMITH and Special Guests TBA
The Old Church 1422 SW 11th Ave Philip Mandel
128 NE Russell St. Four Tet, Ben UFO
THURS. MAY 5 Alberta Rose
3000 NE Alberta St Listen To Your Mother
LaurelThirst Public House
2958 NE Glisan St Billy Kennedy Band; David Dondero, Megan Palmer
3552 N Mississippi Ave Red Yarn; Eulypions
3939 N Mississippi Ave. Crow And The Canyon
2026 NE Alberta St Golden Hour // Twelve Gardens // Ivy House
1036 NE Alberta St The Breaking, Haley Johnsen
1665 SE Bybee Blvd Adlai Alexander w/ Phil Baker of Pink Martini and Mike Horsfall
The Old Church
The Secret Society
350 West Burnside DOOKIE JAM
doug Fir Lounge
221 NW 10th Ave. Avishai Cohen Quartet
4847 SE Division St, Midnight County; Zach Bryson
Alberta Street Pub
3939 N Mississippi Ave. Micky and The Motorcars
2845 SE Stark St Cascade Crescendo & The Last Revel
830 E Burnside St. Foreverland
3552 N Mississippi Ave Tallulah’s Daddy
XRAY FM + We Out Here Magazine presents: The Thesis
426 SW Washington St.
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
1422 SW 11th Ave Yoga at The Old Church with Veranda 116 NE Russell St Thursday Swing! Featuring Doug & Dee’s Hot Lovin’ Jazz Babies, Everything’s Jake
wonder Ballroom 128 NE Russell St. Magic Man & The Griswolds
FRI. MAY 6 Aladdin Theater
3017 SE Milwaukie Ave Joey DeFrancesco
Alberta Street Pub 1036 NE Alberta St
Beth Wood & Anna Tivel
Bunk Bar 1028 SE Water Ave. Dogheart, Ghost Girls, Surf Stoned
1332 W Burnside St Steel Panther
350 West Burnside Kid Congo Powers & the Monkey Birds
doug Fir Lounge 830 E Burnside St. Sassparilla
2530 NE 82nd Ave Joe Baker and the Kitchen Men
1001 SE Morrison St. Big Wild, Electric Mantis
221 NW 10th Ave. The Alan Jones Sextet
426 SW Washington St. ADDverse Effects, Two Planets, Korgy and Bass
4847 SE Division St, Buddy Evans; Gary Kirkland
LaurelThirst Public House
2958 NE Glisan St Jeff Haigerty & The Slowpokes; Baby Gramps
3552 N Mississippi Ave Wayne Richards
3939 N Mississippi Ave. King Black Acid, Cat Hoch, Daydream Machine
Roseland Theater 8 NW 6th Ave Berner
13 NW 6th Ave. PORTLAND FUNK FELLOWSHIP
The Analog Cafe
720 SE Hawthorne Blvd. AIRON GHOSTRADIO; Ramblin’ Rose
The Firkin Tavern
1937 SE 11th Ave Rachael Miles//Shoot Dang
The Old Church
1422 SW 11th Ave Joan Shelley, Michael Hurley
The Secret Society
116 NE Russell St Jaycob Van Auken, Freddy & Francine, The Get Ahead; The Barn Door Slammers
232 SW Ankeny St LADYWOLF with Wave Action, Marcy’s Band, Kulululu
doug Fir Lounge 830 E Burnside St. Night Moves
2530 NE 82nd Ave Kris Delane and the Hurt
1507 SE César E. Chávez Blvd. Wednesday 13
High water Mark Lounge
6800 NE MLK Ave Gaytheist, Phantom Family, Dead Tropics, Woven Tongues
232 SW Ankeny St MOD FODDER
128 NE Russell St. Aesop Rock with Rob Sonic and DJ Zone, Homeboy Sandman
SUN. MAY 8 Alberta Rose
3000 NE Alberta St Wanderlust Circus & 3 Leg Torso present A MOTHER’S DAY CIRCUS MATINÉE!
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
1037 SW Broadway Hazir
350 West Burnside GAEA followed by Sinferno Cabaret
2530 NE 82nd Ave Kris Delane and the Hurt; Zack Bryson
1507 SE César E. Chávez Blvd. Social Repose / Whitney Peyton
426 SW Washington St. Pause 456, The Stein Project, Flames of Durga
4847 SE Division St, Ian Miller and Friends!
LaurelThirst Public House
2958 NE Glisan St The Hollerbodies; Freak Mountain Ramblers
[MAY 4-10] Deicide, Season of Suffering, Godenied, Boudica
350 West Burnside KARAOKE FROM HELL
1507 SE César E. Chávez Blvd. Coasts
221 NW 10th Ave. Dan Balmer Trio; The Alex Koehler Band
4847 SE Division St, Well Swung; Kung Pao Chickens
LaurelThirst Public House 2958 NE Glisan St Portland Country Underground
3552 N Mississippi Ave Mr. Ben
3939 N Mississippi Ave. Dungen, Boogarins
The Analog Cafe
720 SE Hawthorne Blvd. Afton
128 NE Russell St. Lucius, Margaret Glaspy
TUeS. MAY 10 Alberta Street Pub
1036 NE Alberta St Robber’s Roost, John Underwood, Rachael Miles, Shootdang
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
1037 SW Broadway Dream Theater
1332 W Burnside St Santigold, Leileki47
3552 N Mississippi Ave Kafana Klub: Balkan Dance Night; Jellyroll Ramblers
doug Fir Lounge
426 SW Washington St. Corner Gospel Explosion, Pony Village, Fanno Creek
3939 N Mississippi Ave. Elliphant
2530 NE 82nd Ave HIFI Mojo
3100 NE Sandy Blvd Nekrogoblikon / Psychostick / Urizen / Velaraas / Dominus Nox
221 NW 10th Ave. Sherwood High School Jazz Bandl; Mel Brown Septet
1300 SE Stark St #110 Mayer Hawthorne
4847 SE Division St, Get Rhythm
LaurelThirst Public House
221 NW 10th Ave. The Bobby Torres Ensemble
4847 SE Division St, Miller and Sasser; Anita Margarita and The Rattlesnakes
LaurelThirst Public House
2958 NE Glisan St The Resolectrics, Jawbone Flats (all ages!); The Colin Trio, Karyn Ann
3552 N Mississippi Ave BATTLE OF THE TOP HATS: Dig Deep & Professor Gall; Tallulah’s Daddy
3939 N Mississippi Ave. Monarques, Minden, Boone Howard
3100 NE Sandy Blvd Taurus / Eye of Nix / Order of the Gash / Disemballerina
13 NW 6th Ave. SHAFTY - Portland’s Tribute to Phish
600 E Burnside St Cambrian Explosion, Young Hunter, Zozma
The Analog Cafe
720 SE Hawthorne Blvd. Sales, Black Belt Eagle Scout
The Liquor Store
3341 SE Belmont St, TV Girl, Vektroid
The Old Church
3939 N Mississippi Ave. GIVERS // Anna Wise
128 NE Russell St. Pokey LaFarge, the Cactus Blossoms
MON, MAY 9
The Firkin Tavern
2845 SE Stark St The Goodfoot All-Stars 9th Annual Tribute to James Brown
3552 N Mississippi Ave Toji
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
1937 SE 11th Ave New Not Normals//Votive
2958 NE Glisan St Jackstraw; Paul Benoit, Zak Borden, Robin Jackson
1422 SW 11th Ave SaBella Sings Songs for You!
The Analog Cafe
720 SE Hawthorne Blvd. School of Rock Lake Oswego; GARCIA BIRTHDAY BAND
830 E Burnside St. Blaqk Audio, Night Riots, Charming Liars
3000 NE Alberta St Blake Lewis & Elliott Yamin
1037 SW Broadway Music of The Eagles: A Tribute to Glenn Frey
Bossanova Ballroom 722 E Burnside St.
1 N Center Court St Hillsong UNITED 8 NW 6th Ave Tech N9ne, Krizz Kaliko
13 NW 6th Ave. NOTHING BUT THIEVES with The Wrecks
2845 SE Stark St BOYS 2 GENTLEMEN
2026 NE Alberta St Kitten Forever // Cockeye // Mr. Wrong
232 SW Ankeny St FIELD AGENT with Asss, Apartment Fox
Where to drink this week. 1. Teote
1615 SE 12th Ave, 971-888-5281, teotepdx.com. on a sunny day, saunter past the long line for the food, take a left and go up some stairs and down a few others and find yourself in a back bar patio where you can order boozy agua frescas made with mango, habanero and lime, in a garden completely removed from the city. hello, summer.
2. Teutonic Wine Co.
3303 SE 20th Ave., 503-235-5053, teutonicwines.com. Some of the finest and most singular urban wine, from riesling to complex pinot noir, is now available in a handmade bar, and often served by its winemakers and owners to the soundtrack of ambient Stereolab or German butt rock.
2637 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 503-267-2800. the former Prettyman’s General opened out its space, got seating that made sense, and has begun filling its bar with barnwood, portraits of mustached ladies and a vast selection of well-made cocktails and very fine whiskeys. canadian whiskey is banned, but Pappy 12-year is $18.
5301 NE Portland Highway, 503-282-8000. railside is a beautiful sleeper of a dive bar nestled next to passing sleeper cars on nearby train tracks, with cheap-as-sin Buoy beer that’s $3 at happy hour and a camaro on jacks permanently pointed at the bar’s patio like a drawing on a Peechee.
5. Pop Tavern
825 N Killingsworth St., 503-206-8483. Pop tavern has a solid $5 tap list featuring Pfriem and the commons, a $6.50 burger (with fries!) that’s meaty as hell, and a back patio. Like the bar equivalent of a good rug, Pop tavern really ties the neighborhood together amid Ardor, Dynasty and Florida room, so maybe you can say “Killingsworth” the same way you already say “Alberta.”
OLD, GOLD: There are no bibles at Bible Club (6716 SE 16th Ave., 971-2792198, bibleclubpdx.com). And there’s no sign on the 100-year-old house’s front door aside from a little scraped-in insignia, plus a green light that serves as the only indication a bar is open within. The side-road speakeasy is a Prohibitiontheme bar so oddly sincere and unhip in its dedication that it flips the script on authenticity. Its bartenders are very serious about housemade tonic and edible flower garnishes, and its very serious chef—a slightly underutilized Anthony Cafiero, formerly of Ración—turns out amazing French onion soup and lovely potatoes with “melted leeks.” Owner Ryk Maverick spent 20 years collecting antiques, and with nameable exceptions every item in the new bar is about a century old, from great-grandma crystal glasses to handmade doilies to the huge “Bible Club” meeting sign behind the bar to a sewing pinking device used to pretty up orange-peel fronds. The tables are old. The chairs are old. And at least half the customers in the packed bar are old—a product of the neighborhood, the $12-to-$14 drink prices and an affable approachability uncommon to the modern mixology bar. It’s Epcot Center for pre-Prohibition drinks, with servers in flapper garb who make the place feel like date-night theater. Everything is wonderful and wildly expensive, made with ingredients that land on very few shelves, whether a $14 Acts of Contrition pisco drink that comes with floating edible flowers, to a balanced and deep $14 Dip the Bill made with bits of orange zest flamed into Prohibition Edition Cutty Sark, Italian-style bitter, genepy and curaçao. One grievance? For the gin served with a dry-tart housemade tonic (a steep $12), the bar apparently bought up almost all of the aged Citadelle in the state. The wondrous gin would be better left alone, or in my cupboard. But otherwise, consider Bible Club a lovely indulgence you should visit at least once, with the appropriate date. MATTHEW KORFHAGE. FRI. MAY 6 dig A Pony
736 SE Grand Ave. El Dorado (early rock’n’roll, R&B)
The Lovecraft Bar
wed. MAY 4 dig A Pony
736 SE Grand Ave. Anjali and the Incredible Kid (vintage international)
The Lovecraft Bar
421 SE Grand Ave Event Horizon (industrial, goth, EBM)
white eagle Saloon
836 N Russell St Filibusta, Megan Hamilton, Aaron Jackson, VanHousin (bass)
232 SW Ankeny St DJ Arya Imig, DJ ModernBrit
THURS. MAY 5 dig A Pony
736 SE Grand Ave. Blind Bartemaeus (gospel, soul)
1001 SE Morrison St. Body Party Presents Cinco de Mayo with Holla ‘n’ Oates, Barisone, Michael Bruce, Chaach (cumbia, Latin)
3100 NE Sandy Blvd Tetsuo/ House Call
The Lovecraft Bar
421 SE Grand Ave Shadowplay (goth, industrial, EBM)
421 SE Grand Ave Death Trip (rock ‘n roll)
232 SW Ankeny St Surface Noise*: A Vinyl Invitational
wonder Ballroom 128 NE Russell St. Purple Reign: A Tribute to Prince with Strange Babes
SAT. MAY 7 dig A Pony
736 SE Grand Ave. Strange Babes (post-punk, soul, dance)
1001 SE Morrison St. Swagger Like Us with davO, boy_friend, DJ Sappho, Saturn Rising
The Lovecraft Bar
421 SE Grand Ave Expressway to Yr Skull (goth, shoegaze, dance)
SUN. MAY 8 dig A Pony
736 SE Grand Ave. Maxx Bass (boogie)
The Lovecraft Bar
421 SE Grand Ave Glam Rock Trash Bash
MON. MAY 9 dig A Pony
736 SE Grand Ave. Montel Spinozza
The Lovecraft Bar 421 SE Grand Ave Murder Mass
TUeS. MAY 10 Black Book
20 NW 3rd Ave Turnt Up Tuesdays
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
PERFORMANCE = WW Pick. Highly recommended. Most prices listed are for advance ticket sales. At-the-door increases and so-called convenience charges may apply, so it’s best to call ahead.
Liza! Liza! Liza!
This musical ode to Liza Minnelli follows the legendary performer in three diﬀerent phases of life: her hopeful teen years, her Oscar-winning prime and present day Liza. Diﬀerent iterations of the same woman appear onstage together, reliving hits like “Cabaret” and “A Quiet Thing,” the Tony winner she sang when she was 19. Triangle’s small, mostly female cast dances and also dishes on Judy Garland as a monstrous mother, Liza’s gay father and the star’s many marriages and addictions. Like a live E! exposé at Portland’s most ﬂamboyant theater, Liza! gives viewers a peek into the life of a great talent. GRACE CULHANE. The Sanctuary at Sandy Plaza, 1785 NE Sandy Blvd. 7:30 pm Thursday-Saturday, 2 pm Sunday, May 5-28. $15-$35.
NEW REVIEWS Into the Beautiful North
When narcotraﬁcantes threaten the hometown of a young Mexican girl, Nayeli (Michelle Escobar) journeys through Mexico and the Western states to ﬁnd seven strong men to protect her
ALSO PLAYING A Doll’s House
You’re seated inside a human-sized dollhouse with see-through walls in the newest production from Shaking the Tree. And it feels like you shouldn’t be there. From the living room, you witness a domestic scandal unfold in the turn-ofthe-century Norway home of an uptight lawyer named Torvald and his little wifey Nora. As you peer around the stove to witness Torvald and Nora’s juiciest ﬁght, Samantha Van Der Merwe’s genius staging makes you feel like a ﬂy on the wall. SOPHIA JUNE. Shaking the Tree Theatre, 823 SE Grant St., 503-235-0635. 7:30 pm Thursday-Sunday, through May 7. $25.
Love and Information
More than 100 characters dash through 57 micro-vignettes about things like dating computers in British playwright Caryl Churchill’s 2012 play. Theatre Vertigo accomplishes this with a cast of 12 and no small amount of ingenuity in their tiny Shoebox Theater. PENELOPE BASS. Shoebox Theater, 2110 SE 10th Ave. 7:30 pm Thursday-Saturday and 2 pm Sundays, through May 7. $20.
COMEDY & VARIETY Alonzo Bodden
Alonzo Bodden is a veteran of Last Comic Standing, tours the country doing standup and has his photo hung outside Old Town’s venerated Harvey’s Comedy Club. An interesting career change for a
CONT. on page 43
It’s fitting that Mozart’s last-staged and most phantasmagorical opera, The Magic Flute, would eventually be adapted by another conjurer of fantastical worlds, Maurice Sendak. The late author and illustrator of the children’s classic Where the Wild Things Are was an avid Mozart fan, and when he was approached in 1980 by stage director Frank Corsaro to design a new Flute production, he jumped at the chance. After Sendak created more than 60 paintings based on the opera’s plot, set designer Neil Peter Jampolis and backdrop painter Michael Hagen adapted his ideas into scenery and costumes for the show. Perhaps second only to artist Marc Chagall’s trippy 1967 interpretation of Flute, the Sendak version became one of the most visually inventive takes on the opera ever mounted. Throughout the 1980s and ’90s, Portland Opera general director Christopher Mattaliano—then a young stage director—helmed dozens of revivals of the production, working closely with Corsaro and Sendak. But disaster struck, literally, when the sets, stored in a warehouse in Florida, were destroyed by Hurricane Wilma in 2005. Undeterred, Mattaliano enlisted Jampolis and Hagen to re-create the pieces they’d originated decades earlier. He calls the current show “a world re-premiere.” The tale of a prince and an eccentric bird-catcher who set off together to find love and enlightenment, Flute is compelling not so much for its allegorical, at times tedious, plot, as it is for its effervescent melodies. Particularly unforgettable are two devilishly virtuosic arias sung by the Queen of the
Working at a Bronx soup kitchen, Shelley is a nun in crisis and doubting her faith. When a renegade college dropout (newcomer Jahnavi Alyssa) shows up to volunteer, it gives Shelley hope. New Artists Rep resident Ayanna Berkshire plays Shelley in her ﬁrst show as a company member, joined by mainstays John San Nicolas, as a Dominican immigrant security guard, and Allen Nause, as a bumbling regular. With tickets selling out, Artists Rep extended the show’s run before opening night. Artists Repertory Theater, 1515 SW Morrison St., 503-2411278. 7:30 pm Tuesday-Saturday, 2 and 7:30 pm Sunday, through June 5. $48.
BY R ICHA R D SPEER
Night (memorably excerpted in the film Amadeus), a meltingly lyrical ode to desolation sung by the queen’s daughter, Pamina, and the sepulchral bass notes of the mysterious high priest Sarastro. Arguably the most buoyant music of all comes late in the second act, when the bird-catcher fantasizes about finding a female bird-catcher to be his wife. Breaking out his magic flute and bells (the piece is scored for glockenspiel), he joins the orchestra in a tune that encapsulates the dainty joie de vivre that is Mozart’s hallmark. This production kicks off Portland Opera’s firstever summer festival season, which runs from May to July. It’s a departure from the traditional autumn/ winter/spring season and an effort to attract larger audiences. In the spirit of PICA’s TBA Festival, Portland Opera is hoping theatergoers will prefer a short but potent season to more drawn-out programming. Will the new approach pay off? “It’s too early to tell,” says Ingrid Arnett, the Opera’s spokesperson. “We expect to learn more in the fall once audiences have had a chance to experience the change.” Whatever happens, it won’t be because the company didn’t put its best foot forward. Flute is a chestnut perennially popular with adults and children alike, with a “cute” factor bound to be enhanced by Sendak’s sets and costumes. Adding to its accessibility, this production will be sung in an English translation, not the original German. Because let’s face it, when you’re listening to the Queen of the Night, “The wrath of hell boils in my heart!” is easier to understand than “Der Höllerache kocht in meinem Herzen!” Which brings us to the opera’s darker themes. The libretto, written by Emanuel Schikaneder in 1791, touches on issues of racism, cults, creepy quasiMasonic mysticism and the Manichaean battle between good and evil. In the end, though, there’s little doubt that good will prevail and love will win the day. If only life were as chipper and magical. KU
Oregon Children’s Theater stages a song-and-dance adventure with massive produce and plastic bug props that are larger than some of the cast members. No 11 am shows May 28 and 29. Newmark Theatre, 1111 SW Broadway, 503-8288285. 2 and 5 pm Saturday, 11 am and 2 pm Sunday, May 7-29. $14-$32.
AN EXPERIMENTAL NEW SEASON STARTS WITH SETS BY MAURICE SENDAK (WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE) AND MOZART IN MODERN ENGLISH.
James and the Giant Peach
Opera Gone Wild
Emma is the most obnoxious, prudish and ﬂuﬀ-ﬁlled of Austen’s heroines. She meddles and fails at matchmaking sexstarved, turn-of-the-century characters like Mr. Elton, a vicar, and Robert Martin, a farmer. Just ﬁve actors play the huge cast at Hillsboro’s Venetian Theatre, where Michael Fry’s adaptation turns the classic into a play within a play. Venetian Theatre, 253 E Main St., Hillsboro. 7:30 pm Thursday-Saturday, 2 pm Sunday, May 5-29. $25-$30.
WANNA GO, BRO?: A scene from The Magic Flute.
Peter and the Starcatcher
Like a Disney movie exploded inside a tiny theater, Peter and the Starcatcher packs a zillion plot twists, puns and staging tricks into the Portland Playhouse for this prequel to J.M. Barrie’s classic Peter Pan. When Peter (Nick Ferrucci) meets Wendy’s mother (Jennifer Rowe) for the ﬁrst time, the duo battle pirates and pubescent awkwardness to save a treasure chest of starstuﬀ from the bumbling pirate Black Stache (Isaac Lamb with an epic ’stache). Ferrucci nails the 13-year-old orphan’s role, as does Darius Pierce as the sniveling Smee and Lamb as the gargantuan buﬀoon Black Stache. The dozen cast members ﬂy around stage nonstop for nearly three hours, doing the cancan dressed as mermaids and miming chase scenes through the jungle in what looks like a live-action Mario Kart race. The labyrinthine set, live musicians and theatrics rarely seen outside Portland Center Stage make Starcatcher the biggest spectacle—if not the most nuanced production—on any Portland stage right now. Read the full review at wweek. com. ENID SPITZ. Portland Playhouse, 602 NE Prescott St., 503-488-5822. 7:30 pm Wednesday-Saturday, 2 pm Sunday, through May 29. $20-$36.
Y O F T RA
In Othello, virtuous Desdemona keeps her husband’s handkerchief as a token of pure love and ﬁdelity. It gets stolen to prove she’s cheating (she’s not). In this brazenly ironic play by Paula Vogel, she deﬁnitely is. Desdemona is more likely to stick that handkerchief in her back pocket to ﬂag for S&M, orgies and angry talks about the wife-whore dichotomy with her frenemies Emilia and Bianca in this femme-ﬁlled riﬀ on the Bard’s most jealous play from Post5. JESS DRAKE. Post5 Theatre, 1666 SE Lambert St., 971-333-1758. 7:30 pm Friday-Sunday, May 6-28. $20.
Desdemona, a Play About a Handkerchief
OPENINGS & PREVIEWS
small town of Tres Camarones. While Milagro’s family-friendly production sometimes feels like a Disney version of a border crossing narrative, its resilient female leads form an emotional core that sets the production apart. Like the women who hold Tres Camarones together after the men are long gone, strong performances by Escobar and Bunnie Rivera as her tía Irma save the show from sentimentality. Nayeli skips melodrama and readily accepts 4,000-mile detours as a fact of life. GRACE CULHANE. Milagro Theatre, 525 SE Stark St., 503-2367253, 7:30 pm Thursday-Saturday, 2 pm Sundays, through May 28. $30.
J O N AT H A N L E Y
Editor: ENID SPITZ. Theater: ENID SPITZ (firstname.lastname@example.org). Dance: ENID SPITZ (email@example.com). TO BE CONSIDERED FOR LISTINGS, submit information at least two weeks in advance to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
SEE IT: The Magic Flute is at the Keller Auditorium, 222 SW Clay St., 7:30 pm Friday, May 6; 2 pm Sunday, May 8; and 7:30 pm Thursday, May 12, and Saturday, May 14. $28-$250. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
SATURDAY, JUNE 4 IN SANTA BARBARA
A Comprehensive ❖ One-Day ❖ On-Campus Introduction to Pacifica’s Masters and Doctoral Degree Programs
NOW ENROLLING FOR FALL Apply online at paciﬁca.edu
June 4 on the Ladera Lane Campus • Attend typical class presentations • Get information on each degree program • Learn about scholarships & ﬁnancial aid • Tour both Paciﬁca Campuses • Meet faculty, alumni, and admissions counselors
Join us June 4 for a thorough
The $35 registration fee includes all activities, lunch, and a $10 gift certiﬁcate for the Paciﬁca Bookstore. The $75 application fee will be waived that day.
salon Friday evening,
overview of Paciﬁca’s innovative degree programs in psychology, mythology and the humanities. Attend a complimentary June 3 with a presentation by a member of Paciﬁca’s core faculty.
Space at the event is limited. Advance registration is required. Register online at paciﬁca.edu or call 805.879.7305 Paciﬁca is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Gainful Employment Information is available at paciﬁca.edu.
k Store e e W e t t ame Th e Wi l l
wiTh a DubDubDeal!
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
We’ve got plenty of affordable offers to start the year off right. Find certificate discounts to some of your favorite Portland restaurants. Visit wweek.com/duddubdeals.com
PERFORMANCE guy who once worked as a mechanic for jets. Helium Comedy Club, 1510 SE 9th Ave., 888-643-8669. 8 pm Thursday, 7:30 and 10 pm FridaySaturday, May 5-7. $15-$30. 21+.
Portland’s best improv duo—Shelley McLendon and Michael Fetters— combines all the animal-themed sketches that they have done in their ﬁve years as the Aces into one show. The Siren Theater, 315 NW Davis St., 8 pm Friday-Saturday, May 6-14. $20.
vDerek Sheen Record Release Party
After touring with Janeane Garofolo and Patton Oswalt, Derek Sheen picked Portland as the place to release his newest album, Tiny Idiot. Local standouts Barbara Holm, Christian Ricketts, Phil Schallberger, Bri Pruett and Nariko Ott will join him. Helium
Comedy Club, 1510 SE 9th Ave., 888-643-8669. 8 pm Wednesday, May 4. $10-$18. 21+.
tics. Dante’s, 350 W Burnside St., 2266630. 10 pm Tuesday, May 10. $3. 21+.
Do What You Love Comedy Showcase PDX
A new monthly comedy series that’s the only happy-hour comedy show in Portland, co-hosted and co-produced by Earthquake Hurricane collaborators Alex Falcone and Curtis Cook. The premiere includes Bri Pruett, Matt Monroe, Caitlin Weierhauser and David Mascorro. MERYL WILLIAMS. WeWork Custom House, 220 NW 8th Ave. 6:15 pm Thursday, May 5. $15.
Who’s the Ross?
Proliﬁc comedian, actor and late-night host Aaron Ross welcomes his seventh guest for the CandiDating Game: Ted Wheeler, who will answer questions to showcase his personality and poli-
The ﬁrst Cuban dancers to come to Portland for a White Bird show, Malpaso’s contemporary and acrobatic ensemble performs pieces heavy with ﬂoor work and duets in which dancers pretzel their limbs around each other. The three-piece program ends with the Grammy Award-winning Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra joining the dancers onstage. Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway. 8 pm Wednesday, May 4. $26-$72.
For more Performance listings, visit
COME ALONE: Nancy Ellis performs “Portrait.”
Private Show One-on-one theater that takes “site-speciﬁc” to the extreme.
“Please read these instructions carefully. Arrive at the site alone and unaccompanied. Turn off your cellphone.” The ticket for TeatroSOLO, a traveling theater experiment that opened in Portland on April 29, reads like a dispatch from MI6. The last sentence is underlined for emphasis. “If I’m not back by midnight, come find me,” I told my housemate before heading to my 10 pm reservation for “Wish,” one of five one-on-one performance pieces Buenos Aires-based TeatroSOLO is staging at venues across Portland. Intimacy is the focus for TeatroSOLO. One spectator at a time receives a private show not in a theater, but in a public venue meant for some other purpose—the Central Library, a St. Johns tennis center, the Portland Art Museum, a Chinatown street corner, a light-rail train. Its creator, Argentinian artist Matias Umpierrez, calls the performances “theatrical interventions” into regular life. You are not an anonymous audience member any more, hiding yawns in the dark from actors blinded by stage lights. In “Wish”—where actress Alex Leigh Ramirez literally stumbled across me in Chinatown—I could see the tiny snag in her cardigan as she recounted sneaking across the Mexico-U.S. border. For “Myth,” Paul Susi walks you around NoPo’s tennis center, offering you a paper cup of water, telling you to mind your step, asking you to perch
on a preschool-sized red plastic chair while Susi rambles about being a do-nothing youth. “Once in New York City, a random guy on the train got interested and just joined in,” actress April Sweeney tells WW. She performed Umpierrez’s show “Witness” on the NYC subway, and will do it again on a Portland streetcar. “It moves so slowly,” says Sweeney. “We had to slow the pace of the performance.” They adapted the performances to Portland in another way, too—by making the characters more “blue-collar.” But performance art often stumbles on its own genius. TeatroSOLO is meant to shatter the fourth wall, inspire rediscovery of everyday locations and harken back to ancient storytelling techniques. The experience instead recalls a mediocre Tinder date—except sober, more expensive and even more one-sided. Lacking dialogue except for a few questions that seem rhetorical, the scripts are rambling and largely depressing confessionals from melancholy characters that spout platitudes like “I finally felt alive.” The characters come across like the type of loners who are starved for attention and quote Kerouac in everyday conversation, and you are their captive audience. It’s like paying $20 admission to a blind date. You get invited to unexpected venues and, if you show up, a stranger will ramble at you while onlookers stare. But at least on a real date you might get a word in edgewise—not to mention a cocktail. ENID SPITZ. SEE IT: TeatroSOLO is at various venues, through May 15. Boomarts.org. $20. An accompanying art exhibit is at c:3 initiative, 7326 N. Chicago Ave., 971-267-2340. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
VISUAL ARTS = WW Pick. Highly recommended. By JENNIFER RABIN. TO BE CONSIDERED FOR LISTINGS, submit show information—including opening and closing dates, gallery address and phone number—at least two weeks in advance to: Visual Arts, WW, 2220 NW Quimby St., Portland, OR 97210. Email: email@example.com.
A tilted monolith of concrete, wood, foam and metal greets you in the gallery of Portland Art Museum’s biennial awards exhibition for Northwest Art. Work from eight regional artists, in every medium from etched glass to neon, wait for you beyond. The photorealistic drawings of post-apocalyptic scenes by the collaborative duo known as Lead Pencil Studio are a standout, as are the haunting faceless figures, drawn on paper by Samantha Wall, that give the impression that they might dissolve at any moment should you stand in front of them too long. Portland Art Museum, 1219 SW Park Ave., 226-2811. Through May 8.
There is no separation between artist Hayley Barker’s creative practice and her spiritual practice in the series The Ambassadors. Her paintings are explorations of the sacred and some of her amorphous unstretched canvases serve as prayer mats, inviting viewers to consider their own relationship to the divine. Before the exhibition begins, Barker will conduct a personal ritual to bless and complete the series, imbuing it with something that will never be seen but will perhaps be felt. Carl & Sloan, 8371 N Interstate Ave., No. 1, 360-608-9746. Through May 29.
Coalesce; Above and Beneath
If you only saw the world from an airplane window at 10,000 feet, it would look a lot like Ann Lindsay’s abstract paintings. Using limestone clay on panel, Lindsay captures the tight grids,
the swirling circles, and the meanderingly wild landscapes that can only be appreciated from above. In contrast, sculptor Joseph Conrad’s rough and pitted stone carvings make us feel as though are feet are ﬁrmly planted on the ground. Taken together, their work in the two-artist show Coalesce; Above and Beneath gives us the land at opposites. Waterstone Gallery, 124 NW 9th Ave., 226-6196. Through May 29.
COURTESY OF PORTLANDARTMUSEUM.ORG
2016 Contemporary Northwest Art Awards
Lest we get too uppity in the art world, the Paciﬁc Northwest College of Art gives us an exhibition of work from 100 artists, ages 4 to 18. As part of its youth program, PNCA invited budding artists to produce works on paper that represent their ideas of community. So let’s check it out, be happy, and maybe get a couple of autographs. You never know who’s going to be a famous artist one day. Hammer Corridor Gallery at PNCA, 511 NW Broadway, 503-226-4391. Through May 31.
Artist Ben Killen Rosenberg started exploring the process of decay as a theme in his work when his mother and uncle were dying. Then in 2014, while walking along the beach, he came upon hundreds of dead birds washed ashore. Those birds—some in gentle repose, others further along in their decomposition—became the subjects of his ink and watercolor series Continuum.
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Rosenberg asks us to look life and death in the eye and to recognize the beauty in both. Oranj Studio, 0726 SW Gaines St., 719-5338. Through June 30.
Four glass artists present work that combines printmaking techniques with kiln-glass, further pushing the boundaries of both processes. Michelle Murillo explores her ancestry and identity in a standout installation comprised of rows and rows of ghostlike pieces of identiﬁcation—travel documents, driver’s licenses—that are missing the faces of the people to
cairnlike sculptures that oﬀer us a deep aesthetic pleasure in the way of Andy Goldsworthy. There are many things to admire about May, like the subtlety and gradients of color and the way George’s materials ﬁlter the light. But not every body of work has to be about something. Sometimes, as is the case with May, it’s enough for it to be breathtakingly beautiful. PDX Contemporary, 925 NW Flanders St., 503-227-5111. Through May 28.
The Museum’s Ghosts
Photographer Andrés Wertheim uses multiple in-camera exposures to juxtapose museum visitors with the work they have come to see. In Wertheim’s imaginings, the subjects of classical paintings and sculptures loom enormous, apparitions back from another century, keeping an eye on the tiny unsuspecting visitors who have no idea they are being watched. The Museum’s Ghosts asks us to consider our relationship to art and also to ponder who and what makes up the heart and soul of an art institution: Is it the people who visit or the ones who hang on the walls? Blue Sky Silent City by Willem Volkersz, part of 2016 Gallery, 122 NW 8th Ave., Contemporary Northwest Art Awards 503-225-0210. Through May 29.
whom they belong. Each was made by screenprinting glass powder and then kiln-ﬁring it, resulting in objects so fragile, they look like they might dissolve if you touched them. Bullseye Projects, 300 NW 13th Ave., 503-227-0222. Through June 18.
Using translucent multicolored polymer clay, artist Ellen George strings together delicate forms that resemble stones, petals and buds. She suspends them vertically to create ethereal
Nothing Lasts Forever
Toronto artist Brian Donnelly paints photorealist portraits of disembodied heads against optimistic backgrounds of cloudless baby blue skies. Once completed, he applies corrosive materials, like turpentine or hand sanitizer, to his subjects’ faces so that their features melt down the canvas in dripping trails of color. He could easily paint them this way from the start, but in the act of destroying something perfect, his work talks to us about loss, letting go, mortality and the inevitability of time.
Stephanie Chefas Projects, 305 SE 3rd Ave., Suite 202, 310-990-0702. Through June 4.
Twin Feather Meditations
When an artist presents a series that is in stark contrast to the type of work he has produced before, it is important to pay attention and be curious about what has caused his practice to mature. Since coming out after a life of being closeted, Emilio Lobato’s sharp rectilinear and geometric compositions have given way to the soft, layered monotype prints in Twin Feather Meditations. The incorporation of organic forms and the act of freer mark-making represent a more intuitive way of working for the artist. The feather imagery throughout the series serves as a personal totem for Lobato as he explores a belief in certain Native cosmologies that transgender and homosexual members of a community—so called “two-spirit” people—are highly spiritual beings. Elizabeth Leach Gallery, 417 NW 9th Ave., 224-0521. Through May 28.
On assignment from the Musée Carnavalet in Paris to educate the public about the people who care for the museum’s collection, photographer Thomas Bilanges made portraits of each member of its staﬀ. He then photographed each person’s favorite work of art in the same style and with similar lighting that he had used for that person’s portrait. Displayed side by side as diptychs, it can be diﬃcult to tell which is the commissioned portrait and which is the work of art. And by allowing the style of the sitter’s portrait to dictate the style in which the art is photographed, Bilanges sends a clear message that those who care for art are as important as the art itself. Blue Sky Gallery, 122 NW 8th Ave., 503-225-0210. Through May 29.
For more Visual Arts listings, visit
BOOKS = WW Pick. Highly recommended. By JAMES HELMSWORTH. TO BE CONSIDERED FOR LISTINGS, submit lecture or reading information at least two weeks in advance to: WORDS, WW, 2220 NW Quimby St., Portland, OR 97210. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Fax: 243-1115.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 4 Bart King and Melissa Hart
It’s Children’s Book Week, y’all! Powell’s celebrates with two authors for middle-school types. Bart King’s The Drake Equation tells the story of a young birdwatcher who stumbles on a disc in the woods that propels him to magical adventures. In Melissa Hart’s Avenging Owl, a kid named after a Star Wars character struggles to adjust to boring old Oregon. The kids are alright, indeed—if you just teach ’em to read. Powell’s Books at Cedar Hills Crossing, 3415 SW Cedar Hills Blvd., Beaverton, 800-878-7323. 7 pm. Free.
(Junior Braves of the Apocalypse, Terry Dodson (Star Wars: Princess Leia, Red One), and Dylan Meconis (Bite Me!, Family Man, Outfoxed). There will also be a photo-op with the cosplayers from Niall’s Zombie Control Service. Things from Another World (Hollywood), 4133 NE Sandy Blvd., 503-284-4693. 9 am. Free.
MONDAY, MAY 9 26 Songs in 30 Days
It’s not at all uncommon nowadays for a songwriter to make money oﬀ of a big old corporation, but said companies are almost always of the shoe or beverage variety—not the Bonneville Power Administration. But for 30 days in 1941, the BPA hired none other than Woody Guthrie to hype its nascent hydroelectric power. He cranked out 26 songs in total, including now-leg-
endary songs like “Pastures of Plenty.” In 26 Songs in 30 Days, KEXP DJ Greg Vandy explores this singular moment in American musical history. Powell’s Books on Hawthorne, 3723 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 800-878-7323. 7:30 pm. Free.
Peter Willcox has been arrested for “hooliganism” by the Russians, sunk by the French, and stuck on a boat with Pete Seeger. The 30-year Greenpeace captain tells his humble story in Greenpeace Captain: My Adventures in Protecting the Future of Our Planet. If you’re lucky, maybe he’ll sing the song Will Oldham wrote about him. Powell’s City of Books, 1005 W Burnside St., 800-878-7323. 7:30 pm. Free.
For more Books listings, visit
Video Tonfa Release Party
Six Takeaways From Phil Knight’s Memoir
Phil Knight, co-founder of Nike and the richest person in Oregon, has just released his memoir, Shoe Dog (Scribner, 400 pages, $29)—which is coincidentally already the title of a kids’ book about a dog who likes shoes. The book is a first-person chronicle of Knight’s founding of Nike predecessor Blue Ribbon Sports in 1962, ending with Nike’s initial public offering in 1980, with some amazingly wild rich-guy prose and stories about, like, fire drills that involved jumping out of his bedroom window with a bedsheet while his mother timed him. Here are some of the other fun details that hide between the anecdotes of cutthroat international business and scrappy Oregonian entrepreneurialism, not to mention that old story about inventing the modern shoe sole with a waffle iron. WALKER MACMURDO.
THURSDAY, MAY 5 Portland publisher Tim Goodyear has had a hand in the careers of several big names in comics, publishing early work by Dash Shaw, Matt Furie and Julia Gfrorer on his Teenage Dinosaur imprint. But he’s also an artist in his own right. In 2009, Goodyear redrew the art from the packaging of every movie that he watched, replacing their blurbs with his own reviews and musings. They’re collected now in Video Tonfa, an amalgam of graphic novel, criticism and memoir. Floating World, 400 NW Couch St., 503-241-0227. 6 pm. Free.
What is fun, really? In McGinty’s new YA book, that’s an easy question: Fully Ubiquitous Neuralnet, a microchipeyeglasses combination that augments reality. In the The End of FUN, reality begs for augmentation as the world falls apart even faster than it is now. And so teenage Aaron O’Faolain drops out of boarding school to screw around with his FUN unit. But he’ll soon realize tech has a way of becoming intrusive in ways he doesn’t like. Powell’s Books at Cedar Hills Crossing, 3415 SW Cedar Hills Blvd., Beaverton, 800-878-7323. 7 pm. Free.
Alexandre Vidal Porto
Armando is one of the best therapists in São Paolo, but is nagged by his failure to help one of his patients, a 17-year-old named Sergio Y.—the title of Alexandre Vidal Porto’s novel—who, assigned male at birth, wanted to be female. When Armando learns that Sergio, now Sandra, has died in New York, he begins piecing together the story of her life. In addition to being one of Brazil’s most exciting writers, Vidal Porto is a diplomat with a degree from Harvard Law. Powell’s Books on Hawthorne, 3723 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 800-878-7323. 7:30 pm. Free.
SATURDAY, MAY 7 Floating World Free Comic Book Day
Free comics, man! Free! Floating World’s celebration of Free Comic Book Day features the premiere of two comics. Jason Fischer will debut Terra Flats, with whose purchase readers can score a copy of his Seconds Helpings. The day will also see the release of Heavy Meddle, a collaboration between publishers Teenage Dinosaur, Snakebomb, Sparkplug and Gridlords, for free. Floating World, 400 NW Couch St., 503-241-0227. Noon. Free.
TFAW Free Comic Book Day
It’s Free Comic Book Day at Things From Another World. Ten speciﬁc comic books will be available for free (yes, 10 comics per person), plus most stock will be 20 percent oﬀ over the weekend. At the Portland location, you can look forward to meeting Robbi Rodriguez (Spider-Gwen), Greg Smith
Phil Knight really hates Adidas: Of the ’70s, Knight writes, “I
was developing an unhealthy contempt for Adidas. Or maybe it was healthy. That one German company had dominated the shoe market for a couple of decades, and they possessed all the arrogance of unchallenged dominance. I despised them.” Needless to say, he later gloats.
Phil Knight loves Japan: His frequent business trips to Japan in the ’60s and ’70s endeared him to its people and culture, inspiring both enthusiastic prose—“I sat, contemplative, reverent, beneath swaying gingko trees, beside a beautiful torii gate”—and much, um, anachronistic reported dialogue such as, “Mr. Knight, we’ve been thinking long time about American market.” No, Uncle Phil! No! Nike was almost named “Dimension Six”: The name “Nike” came to Jeff Johnson, Blue Ribbon Sports’ first full-time employee, in a dream. But it apparently took an enormous effort by everyone else to convince Knight that his own idea, “Dimension Six,” was “unspeakably bad.” Nike employees used to cut loose at the Buttface: Nike held a
regular work retreat outside of Bend called the Buttface—which Knight describes as “nothing but joy,” while freely admitting some serious drinking and partying. Rumors swirl that Oregon business culture in the ’70s was defined by a Wolf of Wall Street-level of debauchery.
Don’t talk sideways about Tiger Woods in front of Phil Knight:
Tiger and Phil are friends. Knight was there “as Tiger drains the final putt at Augusta,” and was one of fewer than 100 people invited to Woods’ father’s funeral. Knight “will not stand for a bad word spoken about Tiger in [his] presence,” so you better not come at him with any nonsense. Beaverton is a suburb north of Portland: Knight describes
Beaverton as “a suburb north of Portland” and Tigard as “south of downtown Portland.” When you’re Phil Knight, Portland suburbs are wherever you say they are.
READ IT: Phil Knight’s Shoe Dog was published April 26. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
MOVIES = WW Pick. Highly recommended. Editor: ENID SPITZ. TO BE CONSIDERED FOR LISTINGS, send screening information at least two weeks in advance to Screen, WW, 2220 NW Quimby St., Portland, OR 97210. Email: email@example.com. Fax: 243-1115.
OPENING THIS WEEK Captain America: Civil War
A- After the letdown of Avengers:
Age of Ultron and the emo antics of Batman v Superman, audiences are increasingly numb to overstuﬀed superhero ensemble pieces. Captain America: Civil War, though, is proof you can jam pretty much every superhero in your roster into one ﬁlm and still let individuals shine. In pitting team Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) against Team Cap (Chris Evans) over a suspiciously fascist registration law for “enhanced humans,” directors Joe and Anthony Russo could have just put the heroes—familiars like AntMan, Black Widow and War Machine, plus newcomers Black Panther and a truly amazing Spider-Man—in a big-ass sandbox and let them duke it out. They do that, and it’s spectacular. But there’s nothing redundant in the action here, from a Bourneesque opening chase to close-combat thrills reminiscent of The Raid to a surprisingly subdued and heartfelt ﬁnale. The Russos have heard your complaints about universe-building at the expense of story. Civil War is fun. It’s smart. It’s coherent. And, most importantly, it allows its heart to beat strongly amid the chaos, with character moments and set pieces working in tandem to create perhaps Marvel’s best ﬁlm so far. Your move, DC. PG-13. AP KRYZA. Bagdad, Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, City Center, Clackamas, Division, Eastport, Lloyd, Milwaukie, Oak Grove, Pioneer Place, St. Johns 1 & 2, Tigard, Vancouver.
The Family Fang
B In this strange, challenging ﬁlm about art and family, Jason Bateman directs and co-stars with Nicole Kidman as siblings whose parents used them as unwilling actors in public performance art. In the ﬁrst of many ﬂashback scenes, they perform a fake bank heist in which their mother pretends to be shot in front of horriﬁed onlookers. Christopher Walken and Maryann Plunkett play the judgmental, present-day parents, who disappear and leave signs of a bloody struggle. While Kidman’s character insists that her parents faked their deaths, Bateman is ready to let them go. The Family Fang is an intriguingly original adaptation with outstanding performances, a sometimes depressing and occasionally funny ﬁlm that takes it’s quirky story and characters seriously. Unfortunately, trying to balance three time frames with interspersed documentary footage strains anyone’s attention span. R. EZRA JOHNSONGREENOUGH. Cinema 21.
The Man Who Knew Infinity
C+ Indian mathematician and autodidact Srinivasa Ramanujan (Dev Patel) struggles through racism and cultural bigotry along his way to solving the secrets of fancy theorems with formally trained English mathematician G.H. Hardy (Jeremy Irons) in writerdirector Matt Brown’s second feature ﬁlm. While math may be a glorious concept that binds us all to the fabric of the universe, chalkboards full of algorithms are not particularly cinematic. Thus, the ﬁlm’s formulaic scenes feel less like dull moments and more like necessary pieces to keep the audience involved with the story. That said, the performances are delightful, and there’s nothing wrong with a pleasant movie about a fascinating genius. PG-13. CURTIS COOK. Fox Tower.
The Summer of Blam! THE MULTIPLEXES ARE ALIVE WITH THE SOUND OF EXPLOSIONS. BY AP K RYZ A
With Captain America: Civil War’s comic-book punchfest opening this weekend, summer movie season is finally here. That means studios’ finest dramas, coming-of-age tales and historical epics. No. Fuck that. Not even in the previews. Shit’s about to blow up. Literally. Sequels! Comic books! Sequels to comic books! Here’s a rundown of the movies hitting multiplexes this summer.
High-Rise (May 13) If you’ve seen any other Ben Wheatley movie— the hit-man horror Kill List, jet-black romantic comedy Sightseers or hallucinogenic period piece A Field in England—then you know this Tom Hiddleston-starring, early Cronenberginfluenced tale of a dystopian society will be a trippy, lucid, violent and hypersexual mindfuck. The Nice Guys (May 20) While Shane Black is now known to the masses as the director of the underrated Iron Man 3, he’s also the brain behind neo-noir masterpiece Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, a film that reintroduced the wonders of a snarky Robert Downey Jr. long before Tony Stark. This looks like a big-budget version of KKBB, with Russell Crowe in the Val Kilmer role and Ryan Gosling filling in RDJ’s tics. For fans of snark, casual violence and badass sideburns. X-Men: Apocalypse (May 27) The Jennifer Lawrence Franchise Farewell Tour continues where The Hunger Games left off. Here, J-Law makes her final appearance as blue-skinned Mystique in the surprisingly fantastic X-Men Babies franchise, which is full of revisionist timeline-upfucking shenanigans. This time, it’s in the ’80s, and rumor has it that Taylor Swift has a cameo. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (June 3)
Oh, sure, Andy Samberg starring in a Lonely Island-produced mockumentary about a clueless, Bieber-type American idol might sound like a tossed-off SNL Digital Short stretched out to feature length. But anyone
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
who caught Samberg’s brilliantly bizarro HBO tennis riff 7 Days in Hell should know this could be a weird new classic. Hopefully, this is Walk Hard for the post-’NSync world.
Swiss Army Man (June 17) Aka “The Harry Potter farting boner corpse movie,” this indie curio is basically Castaway, with Paul Dano as the stranded survivor and Daniel Radcliffe in the Wilson role. Except instead of a volleyball, he’s a decomposing corpse. And he has a boner. And propulsive flatulence strong enough to allow his bloated body to function as a jet ski. So…yes! Finding Dory (June 17) Thirteen years after Finding Nemo, Pixar is making good on its promise to force adults to explain to children why they’re crying again because of a fucking cartoon about fish. Just give them the Oscar. Sadists. Because goddammit, the trailer made us all cry, twice. Independence Day: Resurgence (June 24)
Twenty years later, Independence Day gets its sequel. Bet on a stammering Jeff Goldblum, landmarks getting leveled and humans once again using immediately antiquated technology to stop the alien menace. Last time, it was a virus uploaded through dial-up internet. Maybe this time it’s a spam bot?
The Legend of Tarzan (July 1) Alexander Skarsgård and his 24-pack abs take to the jungle in an effort to make us die of heat stroke. The BFG (July 1) The last time Steven Spielberg ditched history books for a live-action take on a kid’s classic, we got Hook. Ghostbusters (July 15) Everybody freaked out at the prospect of certified classic Ghostbusters sans dongs. Look, Ghostbusters has already been remade. It was called Men in Black, and nobody cared. If Paul
Feig’s remake starring Kristin Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon were called anything other than Ghostbusters, we’d be fine with it. At least it’s not R.I.P.D. 2: Moon Cycle to the Afterlife.
Jason Bourne (July 29) He swore he’d never murder somebody with a book or a pencil or whatever again. But then Jeremy Renner proved to be less likable when turning household items into murder weapons. Now Matt Damon is back in the shaky-ass world of Robert Ludlum’s Bourne series, and he’s ready to prove why even Bond wanted to be Bourne for the past decade. No dirt bike is safe. Suicide Squad (Aug. 5) After Superman and Batman only made a billion dollars or so, DC is banking on Margot Robbie and Jared Leto as the world’s sexiest juggalos to bring their comic-book universe around by changing supervillains into superheroes. The movie involves a bunch of outcasts from Batman’s rogue’s gallery as government-sponsored mercenaries. Pass the Faygo. Judging by all the reports of Leto’s idiotic “Method acting” shenanigans, audiences might need it. The Founder (Aug. 5) Following his Oscar defeat for Birdman and snubbing for Spotlight, Michael Keaton’s comeback tour hits year three with The Founder, the tale of how a shifty appliance salesman (Keaton) duped a couple of earnest brothers (Nick Offerman and John Carrol Lynch) into franchising their little burger joint. Billions of Happy Meals later, we get a movie that makes Keaton’s Ray Kroc look like a modern-day Daniel Plainview, milkshakes and all. Don’t Breathe (Aug. 26) A few years back, rookie director Fede Alvarez astounded naysayers with a slick and insanely gooey remake of horror sacred cow Evil Dead. Now he turns his eye to the home-invasion thriller, in a film that’s rumored to rely on genuine tension over crazy effects.
10 Cloverfield Lane
C+ The motto of J.J. Abrams’ latest
thriller is, basically, don’t text and drive. Also, don’t break up with your ﬁance, or else you’ll get in a terrible car accident, be abducted by a Lolita-inspired murderer and watch your whole family die in the alien apocalypse—in one night. 10 Cloverﬁeld Lane falls victim to the usual thriller clichés: It doesn’t come close to passing the Bechdel test and contains numerous gratuitous shots of Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) in her underwear, a cheap thriller soundtrack and, of course, aliens. Despite the clichés, Abrams shows for the ﬁrst hour and 20 minutes that he’s almost capable of a smart psychological thriller. The last 10 minutes, however, conﬁrm he’s not. The majority of the ﬁlm creates a claustrophobic, paranoid world inside a bunker designed to survive the apocalypse, and Howard (John Goodman) is the seemingly friendly ringleader. The bunker is surprisingly homey, equipped with games, DVDs and enough food to last for years. For a second, you wonder: Is this really so bad? That’s a question Abrams makes sure to answer. PG-13. SOPHIA JUNE. Beaverton Wunderland, Clackamas, Fox Tower, Vancouver.
Barbershop: The Next Cut
D It’s been 14 years since we ﬁrst entered Calvin’s Barbershop in South Side Chicago, and along with shiny, bald additions like Common, J.B. Smoove and Nicki Minaj’s bosom, there’s a new “No Guns Allowed” sign on the wall. The writing is too childlike to make an impact or come close to the subtle wit that brought up themes of masculinity, black America and class conﬂict in the original Barbershop. I’m not sure which is less natural: hearing the characters exclaim, “#BarbershopSaves TheNeighborhood is trending on Twitter,” or Calvin calling a red bandanna “gang paraphernalia” when talking to his son about his new friends. LAUREN TERRY. PG-13. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, Clackamas, Division, Eastport, Lloyd, Vancouver.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
D Batman and Superman are ﬁghting, and it’s hard to choose a side. The new Superman is boring and out of place in the 21st century. Batman, on the other hand, has been reinvented as a huge dickhead. Played by Ben Aﬄeck with a characteristic lack of gravitas, Batman walks around in a silly metal suit killing people. You know how Batman never kills people? He does now. Even when he doesn’t have to. He even tries killing Superman because, you know, “he might be bad later.” With nobody to root for, BvS:DoJ is just an unconscionably long slugfest simultaneously attempting too much and accomplishing almost nothing. PG-13. ALEX FALCONE. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, City Center, Clackamas, Division, Eastport, Oak Grove, Pioneer Place, Tigard, Vancouver.
Born to Be Blue
B+ Rather than awkwardly cramming Chet Baker’s entire life into a ﬁlm, Robert Budreau focused on a period in the 1960s when Baker’s career saw a rebirth following his brief recovery from heroin addiction. It opens with black-and-white footage of Baker’s dark hallucinations and the temptations of sex and heroin, but those scenes are just the setup for a big f-you for anyone expecting another customary biopic. A little improvisation here works just ﬁne. R. CURTIS COOK. Living Room Theaters.
B- This time, McCarthy stars as Michelle Darnell, a self-made tycoon whose conﬁdence is rivaled only by the height of her turtlenecks. Although crude in comparison to more polished McCarthy ﬁlms, it is fair to say it is her funniest project without Paul Feig at the wheel. R. LAUREN TERRY. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, City Center, Clackamas, Division, Fox Tower, Lloyd, Oak Grove, Tigard, Vancouver.
D A CIA agent’s memories are
injected into the frontal lobe of a nothing-to-lose convict (Kevin Costner). Complete with the prisoner going rogue from government grasp, it’s a plot worthy of ’80s Stallone or Schwarzenegger face-lifted by an overqualiﬁed cast (Gary Oldman, Tommy Lee Jones, Gal Gadot) and updated with a few cybercrimes. Criminal lands as a transparently bad action ﬂick, housing an unintentional tragedy about this violent homeless man lost in London. R. CHANCE SOLEM-PFEIFER. Bridgeport, City Center, Clackamas, Division, Vancouver.
B Within the ﬁrst 10 minutes. the titular “merc with the mouth” slaughters a baker’s dozen of goons to a
soundtrack of “Shoop,” breaks the fourth wall by talking to the audience, punches multiple scrotums, drops more f-bombs than Tony Montana and takes a bullet directly up the butthole while giggling about it. Deadpool doesn’t reinvent the wheel. But it does teabag it. And sometimes that’s enough. R. AP KRYZA. Clackamas, Division, Fox Tower.
The Divergent Series: Allegiant, Part 1
D Undistinguishable from its counterparts, Part 1 ’s excessively dull proceedings are punctuated by generic action scenes in which the Bureau of Genetic Welfare uses a bunch of weirdo army shit to kidnap little kids and wipe their brains clean. If you are over 17, there is exactly zero reason for you to waste your money on this. PG-13. MIKE GALLUCCI. Avalon, Beaverton
CONT. on page 48
PREVIEW C O U R T E S Y O F TAY L O R E I S E L E
GOING STREET: Zac Conklin.
Downhill From Here
Jimmy John’s bike courier Taylor Eisele moved from Eugene to immerse himself in Portland bike culture by delivering sandwiches. Filmmaking is new for Eisele. The short film Keep Going, which he made with fellow courier Tim Jacks, screens at the Filmed by Bike Festival this Saturday. Before his debut, Eisele talked to WW about ice tires, his diet and how to bungee 20 drinks to a bike. GRACE CULHANE.
Portland bike couriers make their cinema debut.
WW: How did you get into the bike courier industry? Taylor Eisele: I was already working at a Jimmy John’s in Eugene, and I just called up one day on a whim. I was up here three weeks later. The plan was to get super into biking, but I didn’t realize I’d be working 30 to 35 hours, doing 300 miles a week. How do you sustain that? I eat all the time, 24/7. I can eat 5 pounds of food a day and still lose weight. At the downtown Jimmy John’s, they gave me free food. I exist off a diet of sandwiches and beer. What crazy orders do people around Lloyd Center make? We’ll take platters and platters to the Moda Center. My biggest order today was 36 sandwiches, probably four dozen bags of chips and 20 drinks. I put all the drinks in a box, filled it with kitchen aprons so they didn’t jiggle around, put the chips on top of that and the sandwiches in a box on top of that. Then I took six or seven bungee cords and strapped it all to a basket. How is delivering in Portland different from Eugene? It opened my eyes to how bad drivers can be. Last October, I got taken out by a pickup truck. When you’re paid to ride your bike and you get taken out, you lose a lot of money. It’s always the right turn, too. Nine times out of 10, people get you at the right hook. You say you raked in “hours and hours and hours of footage” for the seven-minute film. What didn’t make the cut? The day Portland froze over, we took our bikes out on the ice just for fun. You just need zip ties. If you put the lock part [of the zip tie] at the bottom of the tread, it sticks into the ice and breaks it up. It works just like spikes. SEE IT: Keep Going screens at Hollywood Theatre, 4122 NE Sandy Blvd., 503-493-1128. 6 pm Saturday, May 7. $11. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
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Elvis & Nixon
A- In 1970, Elvis Presley showed
up at the White House asking to meet President Richard Nixon. He had decided to become a federal agent for the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, and to lend support to the country in any way it needed. That meeting went better than expected. What’s great about this story is that it focuses on a very short period of time—a couple of days, culminating in an hourlong meeting—and manages to extrapolate from those few hours a completely diﬀerent version of these icons than you’re used to seeing. Kevin Spacey plays a charming and smart Nixon who seems like he’d be fun to hang out with. Meanwhile, Michael Shannon (Boardwalk Empire) plays a brooding, gunobsessed Elvis between his heyday and Fat Elvis phases who seems as if he would be a bummer to be around. Despite what the phrase “based on a true story” leads you to believe, Elvis & Nixon is fascinating and really fun. R. ALEX FALCONE. Bridgeport, Clackamas, Living Room Theaters, Lloyd.
Everybody Wants Some!!
A- Richard Linklater’s newest
DR. SCOTT’S ELECTRIC HAIRBRUSH THURSDAY, MAY 5TH AT 6PM
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CHERRY CITY TAKEOVER W/
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Portland gets all the attention, but just south of the limelight, Salem, Oregon is quietly developing a reputation for high energy, no pretense rock and roll. The Cherry City Takeover features three of the bands leading that charge, M69’s, City of Pieces and The Pumps.
JESSE RUTHERFORD (of The Neighborhood) & JESSIE ENGLISH -BOOK SIGNINGSATURDAY, MAY 7TH AT 6PM
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THE CACTUS BLOSSOMS SUNDAY, MAY 8TH AT 4PM
Infusing elements of early rock n roll and classic country while tracing their musical heroes footsteps back to the roots, The Cactus Blossoms have arrived with a sound that’s uniquely their own. Led by brothers Jack Torrey and Page Burkum, the band started as a vehicle for the siblings to hone their harmonic abilities on classic American songs with minimal instrumentation.
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Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
ﬁlm doesn’t have a plot. But you’ll hardly realize it—and you probably won’t care. Everybody Wants Some!! says “fuck that” to Hollywood convention, which makes sense for the ﬁlmmaker who stunned the world with Boyhood’s artful ﬁlmmaking techniques that still broke the box oﬃce. This “fuck it” attitude also makes sense for a ﬁlm that follows a college baseball team in 1980s Texas through the three days before school starts. R. SOPHIA JUNE. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, CineMagic, City Center, Fox Tower, Vancouver.
Eye in the Sky
C+ The year’s ﬁrst movie on the
ethics of drones, and the last ﬁlm featuring Alan Rickman, misses its mark. British Col. Katherine Powell (Helen Mirren) tracks infamous terrorists to a house in Nairobi, Kenya. To stop the suicide bombing they’re planning, Powell orders a Predator drone to destroy the house. The only problem is a small, hula-hooping neighbor girl. The plot arc is more of a plot sine wave, with the withering Lt. Gen. Frank Benson (Rickman as a wandless Professor Snape in olive drab) throwing up his hands and staring down the people who just refuse to blow that little girl up already. It’s not Rickman’s fault (RIP) that his dry humor is out of place in a movie about the ethics of vaporizing people with missiles. R. ZACH MIDDLETON. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, Clackamas, Living Room Theaters.
Gods of Egypt
D It’s ancient Egypt like you’ve never seen it before: bigger, shinier and chock-full of deities punching each other. PG-13. Vancouver.
B+ Patrick Stewart plays the big
bad leader of a backwoods gang of white supremacists. The punk-rock band that falls into his clutches is
loosely led by Anton Yelchin (Scotty in the new Star Trek ﬁlms), and the band is on an unsuccessful tour, taking a detour to play a paying gig at a neo-Nazi compound. There, the band witnesses a murder that these guys won’t let them walk away from. The characters on both sides are loosely drawn but smart enough not to make stupid decisions, which makes the delay of action last longer than expected. Like Akira Kurosawa, Saulnier ﬁnds the anticipation of violence more cinematic than its outcome, which are brief but gratuitous acts that leave a stain. The outcomes are unpredictable, shocking, grisly and really fun. PG-13. EZRA JOHNSON-GREENOUGH. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, Cinema 21, Clackamas, Hollywood, Vancouver.
B+ The Coens’ funniest ﬁlm since The Big Lebowski combines a zany caper, a communist plot, ’50s studio politics and a touching story about one man’s calling in life into a cohesive, lighthearted and quip-heavy comedy. It’s a neat package like only the Coen brothers can tie up. PG-13. JOHN LOCANTHI. Academy, Jubitz, Kennedy School, Laurelhurst.
Hello, My Name is Doris
B Enter the mind of Doris, where 20-something men with waxed chests rip oﬀ their shirts and slam her passionately against the wall. Until someone wakes her from the daydream. Doris is a whip-smart comedy that pokes fun at the ultracurated youthful lifestyle, while avoiding the recent trope of seniors ﬁnding a place amid the nostalgic fascination of millennials. You can almost feel John trying not to laugh as he oﬀers custom-blended artisanal cocktails to Doris during Friendsgiving at his place. PG-13. LAUREN TERRY. City Center, Living Room Theaters, Tigard.
A Hologram for the King
B You might’ve expected a ﬁlm aimed at politically centrist and optimistic parents from Tom Hanks’ production company (Larry Crowne, Charlie Wilson’s War). A ﬁsh-outof-water tale about an obsolete American salesman peddling IT to Saudi royalty, the ﬁlm’s telegraphed cultural clashes aren’t xenophobic or exploitative, just safe and sentimental. Quips about forbidden alcohol in the Kingdom here, a polite misunderstanding about the CIA there. If you can buy the tone—and Hanks is doing his everyman damndest to convince you of this endeavor’s beating heart—it falls back on the clever ﬂourishes of Dave Eggers’ source material. R. CHANCE SOLEMPFEIFER. Bridgeport, City Center, Clackamas, Fox Tower.
The Huntsman: Winter’s War
B It’s been called an unnecessary sequel. And it may be, but as a steadfast lover of swords and sorcery ﬁlms, I must steadfastly protect it like the Citadel Guards of Gondor. This sequel functions as both a prequel and sequel to the ﬁrst ﬁlm, and it actually does a competent job of completely leaving out Snow White. That makes it feel trite at ﬁrst, and for some a waste of time.
B+ This dinner-party thriller evokes
the Manson murders in present-day L.A., where Will and Kira attend a grating dinner party thrown by Will’s ex-wife and her new husband—at Will’s former home. Will’s irking suspicions balloon into psychological thrills, neatly edited and dimly lit by director Karyn Kusama (Aeon Flux, Jennifer’s Body), with a not so subtle nod to Scientology, too. This film’s mind games play rough, though the action drags at times. See a Q&A with Kusama on page 46. PG-13. MERYL WILLIAMS. Laurelhurst.
B- The most troubling things about Keanu are also the best things about it. The movie is named after the adorable escaped pet of a Mexican drug lord, and the poster is of said kitten, but the film’s real draw is clear: Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key, the comedy duo from the gone-too-soon sketch show Key and Peele and the not-gonesoon-enough MADtv. Key (the bald, tall one) plays neurotic family man Clarence, while Peele plays Relle, his desperate, recently dumped cousin. Relle finds Keanu, only to have the cat stolen in a Lebowskian drug mixup. This sends the cousins on a quest to rescue the kitty, which involves posing as assassins, doing a terrifying drug and some cold-blooded murder. That’s the first troubling/great thing: The quest for an adorable kitten racks up a huge body count. Depending on your mood, barometric conditions and which planet is in your house, it’s either disgusting or hilarious. Thing two: The duo retread a lot of ground from their show. It’s essentially a movie extrapolation of that bit about “White Sounding Black Guys,” which leads to some hilarious moments, like one-upmanship over who got beaten up by tougher guys. At the same time, it’s a skinny framework for carrying a movie. It would be just a C+, but Luis Guzman is in it. R. JAMES HELMSWORTH. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, City Center, Clackamas, Division, Eastport, Lloyd, Oak Grove, Pioneer Place, St. Johns 1 & 2, Tigard, Vancouver.
Kung Fu Panda 3
A- It’s been five years since Kung Fu Panda 2, and Jack Black hasn’t been in anything even close to that good since. PG. Academy, Avalon, Kennedy School, Vancouver.
B The premise of a magical boy running
from the government sounds trite. But add a clever, light-handed screenplay, take away the kitschy magic, and include a dark take on the increasing flow of data through satellites, and you’ve got a fresh, modern science-fiction film. Writerdirector Jeff Nichols (Mud) uses sparse dialogue to maintain an air of mystery around the calm, young Alton (Jaeden Lieberher), carefully using every word and glance to tell a little more about this electromagnetically charged child. PG-13. LAUREN TERRY. Cinema 21.
B Fans looking for a solely reverent portrait of Miles Davis won’t get it in Miles Ahead, the new, loosely biographical film on the jazz legend. Instead, Don Cheadle, who wrote, produced, directed and stars in the film, delivers a more complete picture of Davis as a groundbreak-
ing musician who was also an abusive drug addict. Whether he’s snorting cocaine, shattering a glass table during a fight with his wife or being arrested and beat up by a policeman for smoking in public, the audience is reminded of Davis’ best and worst moments all at once. R. SOPHIA JUNE. Bridgeport, Cinema 21, City Center, Hollywood.
AP FILM STUDIES CO U R T E SY O F B R I T I S H F I L M CO M PA N Y
The thing is, Kristen Stewart as Snow White was the worst thing about the first film. She functioned almost solely as a lightly emoting MacGuffin with too much screen time. Snow White’s absence is more than made up for by a very game Jessica Chastain as the huntsman’s feisty partner, who is a lot of fun as a badass warrior, and Chris Hemsworth does Hemsworth well as the over-cocky, macho title character. Compared to similar genre entries recently, like The Last Witch Hunter, 47 Ronin and Seventh Son, it’s practically a masterpiece, and if I was 13 years old, it might be my favorite film. PG-13. EZRA JOHNSON-GREENOUGH. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, City Center, Clackamas, Division, Eastport, Lloyd, Moreland, Oak Grove, Pioneer Place, St. Johns 1 & 2, Tigard, Vancouver.
D Unless you’re anticipating something other than Garry Marshall’s recent soulless romcoms (Valentine’s Day, New Year’s Eve), this is exactly what you’d expect. The two-dimensional characters represent a range of maternal strife, from an orphaned young mother (Britt Robertson) seeking to reconnect with her birth mom, to the Home Shopping Network empress (Julia Roberts) hiding a predictable secret. Jennifer Aniston’s comedic chops are wasted on the role of Sandy, an insecure wreck who explains to her sons that, “just like you don’t want to share your Lego pirate ship, it’s hard for me to share you guys.” Rather than balance the traditional feminine roles, Jason Sudeikis stumbles through a lobotomized version of the “I don’t know what I’m doing, but I’ll do my best” single-dad story line as Bradley, wincing at tampons. It is too bad, because more laughter might’ve distracted from the awkward demographics in this caucasian version of Atlanta. PG-13. LAUREN TERRY. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, City Center, Clackamas, Division, Eastport, Fox Tower, Lloyd, Oak Grove, Tigard, Vancouver.
A- Leonardo DiCaprio finds his trap-
ping party on the receiving end of a bear attack. R. Academy, Empirical, Valley, Vancouver.
In the Shadows of the Empire STAR WARS EXTRAS TAKE THE SPOTLIGHT IN ELSTREE 1976.
BY A P kRYz A
tale set in early-’80s Dublin, for fans of quality nostalgia fare like Freaks & Geeks. A 15-year-old boy (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) seeks to escape the harsh reality of his brutal schoolmasters and splintering home. Under the tutelage of his hash-smoking, dole-surfing older brother, he discovers Duran Duran videos and Cure albums. The story is about as believable as Almost Famous or School of Rock, but that’s not the point. This film fondly recalls John Hughes, tips its hat to Wes Anderson, and repeatedly nods to Back to the Future and “Thriller.” Aside from a touch too much sentimentality in the third act, Sing Street is a heartwarming achievement in the modern (retro) rock musical canon that is held back from a place on the top shelf only because it stands on the shoulders of giants. PG-13. NATHAN CARSON. Fox Tower.
The stormtrooper who bumps his head on the door frame while chasing Han Solo through the Death Star is a person, dammit, and a respected thespian to boot. The guy in the goofy helmet when Leia gives Chewie, Luke and Han their medals at the end of A New Hope? The one with the slightly raised visor on his hat, four rows from the front? He’d be happy to give you his autograph. For about $30. Forty years on, it seems as if we’ve heard every story there is to tell about Star Wars. But amid the stars and self-aggrandizing producers telling their tales in book after book, TV special after TV special, the oral history of George Lucas’ magnum opus often loses the stories of those who lurked in the background of the film, usually under a big plastic head. The documentary Elstree 1976, opening at Kiggins Theatre this Friday, with a costume procession from the Cloud City Garrison of the 501st, isn’t a completist Star Wars memoir, by any means. There is no Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford or George Lucas. The biggest name on the marquee is David Prowse, the bodybuilderturned-body of Darth Vader. Then the guy under the Boba Fett helmet. The Greedo mask. Then Biggs. All the way down to extras spotted only in the background if you pause the DVD player at just the right moment. The film features a lot of actors who…just didn’t make it. That hasn’t stopped some of them from capitalizing on their brief appearances, showing up at conventions to sign posters and pose with fans who somehow know Stormtrooper #1 from #453. There’s some interesting stuff here, especially when the older actors wax poetic about their time on set or when Prowse gets bitter about being duped into believing his own dialogue might ever be used (and getting banned from the Star Wars Celebration reunion). But the low budget means there’s very little actual Star Wars footage, which
B- A New Wave rock-’n’-roll fairy
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
A- If there’s one thing we know about Star Wars fans, it’s that they’re as resistant to change as any religious zealot. And so, the best thing that can be said about The Force Awakens is that it’s almost old-fashioned. PG-13. Academy, Avalon, Empirical, Laurelhurst, Mission, Valley, Vancouver.
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
C+ Tina Fey stars in this light comedy about the war in Afghanistan. She’s funny for sure, but something just feels off with the 30 Rock-style humor interlaced with the horrific violence of Kabul circa 2004. Mix in some friend drama with Margot Robbie (The Wolf of Wall Street) and a really uncomfortable sexual encounter in which Bilbo Baggins puts his fingers in her mouth, and WTF ends up an awkward teenager of a movie, not sure who it is or why it feels the way it does. R. ALEX FALCONE. Academy, Fox Tower, Jubitz, Valley, Vancouver.
B Leave it to Disney to sneak powerful, adult messages into a PG-rated movie. PG. Bridgeport, Cedar Hills, City Center, Clackamas, Division, Eastport, Lloyd, Oak Grove, Pioneer Place, Tigard, Vancouver.
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reduces Elstree to a series of talking-head interviews. With the exception of anecdotes about how the studio smelled (like plastic) and Lucas’ demeanor (nobody knew he was the director), there’s not much for casual fans. More interesting is how sad the whole affair is. One actor, who played the “these aren’t the droids you’re looking for” sandtrooper, is shown busking while talking about all the music he’s produced. Actress and former go-go dancer Pam Rose takes consolation in the fact that her character—one of the rare women in the film—got an action figure (and she maybe banged Christopher Reeve when she was an extra in Superman). Jeremy “Boba Fett” Bulloch talks at length about how he still acts—in commercials. Elstree aims to give voices to the voiceless. Literally, in the case of Prowse, whose lines were dubbed by James Earl Jones after delivering them himself during shooting. For Star Wars fans, it’s like getting the clips from the cutting-room floor of an oral history that shows how one small experience can prop actors up for decades after their hope of becoming stars has faded. Fifteen minutes of fame can be stretched to decades if you’re catering to the right fan base— the ones willing to pay $30 for a signature from the guy four rows behind Han Solo. SEE IT: Elstree 1976 opens Friday, May 6, at Kiggins Theatre, followed by costumes and a panel discussion by the Cloud City Garrison of the 501st. 7 pm. $7. alSo showinG:
Speaking of Star Wars, the Mission hosts its annual May the 4th Be with You celebration, with costumes and fan-made films that are very likely to be better than Attack of the Clones. Mission Theater. 6:30 pm Wednesday, May 4. Pix’s Movies at Dusk outdoor screening series makes a welcome return with the requisite The Big Lebowski, complete with white Russians. Pix Pâtisserie. 7 pm Wednesday, May 4. The Academy kicks off a kick-ass run of ’70s noir classics with Chinatown, in which Jack Nicholson navigates a labyrinthine landscape of plot points that don’t really matter, because when you’re working with Polanski’s noir, atmosphere trumps comprehensibility. Academy Theater. May 6-12. Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
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Yes We Cannabis WHICH PRESIDENTS SMOKED WEED? BY WM. WILLA R D GR EEN E
The last time a cannabis teetotaler held the highest office in these United States, Michael Jordan only had two championship rings and John Wayne Bobbitt’s penis remained blissfully ignorant of the horrific year to come. In fact, our commanders in chief have a long history of marijuana use dating back to the origins of the office. Much of the historical record is spotty, but here’s who we think toked, and who we’re pretty sure didn’t.
PROBABLE CANNABIS USERS
From Page 27
George HW Bush Big Macs
Clinton TV Dinners
New England Fish Chowder
Fran’s SMOKED SEA SALT CARAMEL IN MILK CHOCOLATE AND BLACK FOREST BERRY HONEST TEA
Eisenhower Kennedy Chili
Ninja Squirrel Hot sauce
Waffles with strawberries
Willamette Week MAY 4, 2016 wweek.com
George Washington: Many of the Founding Fathers grew hemp. Did they smoke it? We don’t know for sure, but Washington did write about separating the female cannabis plants, which would have had higher THC content, and there’s reason to think he might have used a hempderived topical on his toothaches. Thomas Jefferson: Not only did TJ grow hemp, but he purportedly smuggled a rare strain of cannabis “known for potency” out of China. James Monroe: Like Jefferson, Monroe served as ambassador to France during a time when hashish was chic. According to his biographers, he smoked openly in Paris and continued the habit after returning stateside. Andrew Jackson: The Notorious AJ wrote of smoking marijuana with troops during the War of 1812. Zachary Taylor: Taylor and Franklin Pierce both crossed paths with reefer while leading American forces during the Mexican-American War.
Franklin Pierce: Pierce later referred to marijuana as “about the only good thing to come out of the war.” John F. Kennedy: The ballerest of all presidents was smoked up by his mistress, Mary Meyer, who brought him six joints to ease his back pain. In a weird coincidence, she was randomly murdered while out for a jog just a few weeks after the Warren Commission Report dropped. Bill Clinton: The future first gentleman says he did not inhale. Christopher Hitchens claimed Bill was a brownie aficionado at Oxford. George W. Bush: Claims he would not answer questions about whether he smoked because of the message it sends to kids. As if any kid wants to be like Dubya. Barack Obama: Spent a good portion of his formative years in Hawaii hotboxing, and is always welcome to smoke here with us if visiting.
PROBABLE TEETOTALERS Richard Nixon: Linked marijuana to Jews, Latinos, and African-Americans, people for whom Tricky Dick, um, shared little affection. Started the War on Drugs. Did not smoke weed on the roof of the White House with Elvis, unfortunately. Ronald Reagan: Staunchly believed cannabis use caused brain damage. Actually had brain damage. George H.W. Bush: Advocated a metaphorical troop surge in the War on Drugs. Responded to concerns over prison overcrowding by claiming room would be made for marijuana possessors, a promise which turned out to be as binding as “Read my lips: No new taxes.”
BY N at e Wag g o N e r
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42 Aim 44 When infomercials start running, sometimes 45 Wavy lines, in a comic strip 46 “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life” songwriter 48 Visit Vail, perhaps 50 Talk and talk 52 Machine to watch “RoboCop” on, way back when 53 Didi of “Grease” and “Grease 2” 55 Astronomical flareups
Down 1 Zippo 2 Theater sign 3 Much of soc. studies 4 Michele’s “High School Reunion” friend 5 “Pulp Fiction” actress Thurman 6 Mishmash of a “Jeopardy!” category 7 Play thing? 8 First month on a Mexican calendar 9 “And so on” 10 Majestic 11 “You couldn’t even find your own butt on a Waze app” 12 Trivial Pursuit edition 13 Cosmetics mogul Lauder 18 Pizza destroyer of old Domino’s ads 23 “The Fresh Prince of ___-Air” 25 Home of the Mustangs, for short 27 1993 Texas standoff city
28 Speedy breed of steed 29 “Buying your weed wearing a pot leaf T-shirt? Like that’s original” 30 Went out with 31 “Pet” irritation 33 ___ di pepe (tiny pasta variety) 36 Sucks the strength out of 37 Blue-green hue 38 Model with a palindromic name 40 How lottery numbers are chosen 43 Gear tooth 44 Text-interpreting technology, briefly 47 Champagne bucket, e.g. 48 Piece of paper 49 Australian leafeater 51 “Otello” librettist 54 Loch ___ Monster 56 Abbr. on a bottle of Courvoisier 57 Where the Himalayas are 58 Partakes of 59 Pack of playing cards 60 Bad time for Caesar 63 “Lord of the Rings” tree creature
last week’s answers
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Week of May 5
ARIES (March 21-April 19) “Silence is not silence, but a limit of hearing,” writes Jane Hirshfield in her poem “Everything Has Two Endings.” This observation is apropos for you right now. There are potentially important messages you’re not registering and catalytic influences you can’t detect. But their apparent absence is due to a blank spot in your awareness, or maybe a willful ignorance left over from the old days. Now here’s the good news: You are primed to expand your listening field. You have an enhanced ability to open certain doors of perception that have been closed. If you capitalize on this opportunity, silence will give way to revelation.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22) On Cracked.com, Auntie Meme tells us that many commonly-held ideas about history are wrong. There were no such things as chastity belts in the Middle Ages, for example. Napoleon’s soldiers didn’t shoot off the nose of the Sphinx when they were stationed in Egypt. In regards to starving peasants, Marie Antoinette never derisively said, “Let them eat cake.” And no Christians ever became meals for lions in ancient Rome’s Colosseum. (More: tinyurl.com/historicaljive.) In the spirit of Auntie Meme’s exposé, and in alignment with the astrological omens, I invite you to uncover and correct at least three fabrications, fables, and lies about your own past.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20) Your ability to accomplish magic is at a peak, and will continue to soar for at least two more weeks. And when I use that word “magic,” I’m not referring to the hocuspocus performed by illusionists like Criss Angel or Harry Houdini. I’m talking about real feats of transformation that will generate practical benefits in your day-to-day life. Now study the following definitions by writer Somerset Maugham, and have faith in your ability to embody them: “Magic is no more than the art of employing consciously invisible means to produce visible effects. Will, love, and imagination are magic powers that everyone possesses; and whoever knows how to develop them to their fullest extent is a magician.”
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21) Poet Charles Wright marvels at the hummingbird, “who has to eat sixty times his own weight a day just to stay alive. Now that’s a life on the edge.” In the coming weeks, Scorpio, your modus operandi may have resemblances to the hummingbird’s approach. I don’t mean to suggest that you will be in a manic survival mode. Rather, I expect you’ll feel called to nourish your soul with more intensity than usual. You’ll need to continuously fill yourself up with experiences that inspire, teach, and transform you.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20) According to author Vladimir Nabokov, the Russian word toska means “a dull ache of the soul, a longing with nothing to long for, a sick pining, a vague restlessness.” Linguist Anna Wierzbicka says it conveys an emotion that blends melancholy, boredom, and yearning. Journalist Nick Ashdown suggests that for someone experiencing toska, the thing that’s yearned for may be “intangible and impossible to actually obtain.” How are doing with your own toska, Gemini? Is it conceivable that you could escape it -- maybe even heal it? I think you can. I think you will. Before you do, though, I hope you’ll take time to explore it further. Toska has more to teach you about the previously hidden meaning of your life. CANCER (June 21-July 22) “Gandhi’s autobiography is on my pillow,” writes Cancerian poet Buddy Wakefield. “I put it there every morning after making my bed so I’ll remember to read it before falling asleep. I’ve been reading it for 6 years. I’m on Chapter 2.” What’s the equivalent phenomenon in your world, my fellow Crab? What good deed or righteous activity have you been pursuing with glacial diligence? Is there a healthy change you’ve been thinking about forever, but not making much progress on? The mood and the sway of the coming days will bring you a good chance to expedite the process. In Wakefield’s case, he could get up to Chapter 17. LEO (July 23-Aug. 22) In the 16th century, European explorers searched South America in quest of a mythical city of gold known as El Dorado. Tibetan Buddhist tradition speaks of Shambhala, a magical holy kingdom where only enlightened beings live. In the legends of ancient Greece, Hyperborea was a sunny paradise where the average human life span was a thousand years and happiness was normal. Now is an excellent time for you to fantasize about your own version of utopia, Leo. Why? First, your imagination is primed to expand. Second, dreaming big will be good for your mental and physical health. There’s another reason, too: By envisioning the most beautiful world possible, you will mobilize your idealism and boost your ability to create the best life for yourself in the coming months. VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) “Anytime you’re going to grow, you’re going to lose something,” said psychologist James Hillman. “You’re losing what you’re hanging onto to keep safe. You’re losing habits that you’re comfortable with, you’re losing familiarity.” I nominate these thoughts to serve as your words of wisdom in the coming weeks, Virgo. From an astrological perspective, you are in a phase when luxuriant growth is possible. To harvest the fullness of the lush opportunities, you should be willing to shed outworn stuff that might interfere.
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SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) “Anybody can become angry,” said Greek philosopher Aristotle. “That is easy; but to be angry with the right person, and to the right degree, and at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way, that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy.” I’m pleased to inform you, Sagittarius, that now is a time when you have an exceptional capacity for meeting Aristotle’s high standards. In fact, I encourage you to honor and learn all you can from your finely-honed and well-expressed anger. Make it work wonders for you. Use it so constructively that no one can complain. CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) To celebrate your arrival at the height of your sex appeal, I’m resurrecting the old-fashioned word “vavoom.” Feel free to use it as your nickname. Pepper it into your conversations in place of terms like “awesome,” “wow,” or “yikes.” Use a felt-tip marker to make a temporary VAVOOM tattoo on your beautiful body. Here are other enchanted words you should take charge of and make an intimate part of your daily presentation: verve, vim, vivid, vitality, vigor, voracious, vivacious, visceral, valor, victory, and VIVA! AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18) When he was a boy, Mayan poet Humberto Ak’ab’al asked his mother, “What are those things that shine in the sky?” “Bees,” she answered mischievously. “Every night since then,” Humberto writes, “my eyes eat honey.” In response to this lyrical play, the logical part of our brains might rise up and say, “What a load of nonsense!” But I will ask you to set aside the logical part of your brain for now, Aquarius. According to my understanding of the astrological omens, the coming days will be a time when you need a big dose of sweet fantasies, dreamy stories, and maybe even beautiful nonsense. What are your equivalents of seeing bees making honey in the night sky’s pinpoints of light? PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20) “Sometimes, a seemingly insignificant detail reveals a whole world,” says artist Pierre Cordier. “Like the messages hidden by spies in the dot of an i.” These are precisely the minutiae that you should be extra alert for in the coming days, Pisces. Major revelations may emerge from what at first seems trivial. Generous insights could ignite in response to small acts of beauty and subtle shifts of tone. Do you want glimpses of the big picture and the long-range future? Then be reverent toward the fine points and modest specifics.
Homework Thousands of amazing, inexplicable, even miraculous events occur every day. Report yours: http://bit.ly/Amazement
check out Rob Brezsny’s Expanded Weekly Audio Horoscopes & Daily Text Message Horoscopes
The audio horoscopes are also available by phone at
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