Portland, Ore.'s Burnside Bridge was shut down briefly Wednesday evening so a coven of bearded men carrying an assault rifle could be detained and questioned. Why were they strolling around Stumptown with an AK? To take photos for a calendar benefiting breast cancer, obviously.
From KATU News in Portland:
Several of the men told KATU News they were on their way to take a photo under the "Portland, Oregon" sign near the Burnside Bridge to raise money for breast cancer research. The men said the photo was going to be part of a Beards for Breasts calendar.
"It's from Seattle," said Jedediah Aacker. "This girl, Sugar June, does it. She puts together a calendar for all the beard clubs around the nation. Beards for breasts."
Aacker wasn't entirely clear as to why the cops were called, as in his view, they were "just a bunch of dudes walking across the bridge wearing camo getting rad."
"We didn't mean to shake up the community or shut down the Burnside Bridge," said Matthew Jenkins. "Just trying to save boobs, you know?"
The full story can be read here.
Pedaling up to the Aladdin Theater in Portland, Ore., last Friday evening, a long line of tattooed, sundress-clad ladies and bespectacled lads in cut-off shorts snaked around the building. Judging by the looks of the feverish crowd, you wouldn’t have guessed they were waiting to hear a shrill folk songbird play the harp delicately for hours.
Folk chanteuse Joanna Newsom and opener Robin Pecknold of the Fleet Foxes, completely sold out shows on both Friday and Saturday nights in the Rose City. Though she likely could have filled a larger space, Newsom's meandering tunes were a perfect match for the intimate Aladdin Theater, an old, 600-ish capacity seated venue.
Pecknold, who isn’t known for being particularly chatty on stage, seemed more comfortable as a performer than when Fleet Foxes rolled through Boise in 2008, pausing once to respond to a heckler that his favorite color is “Uh, red.” The bearded and sweatered Pecknold played seated for the entirety of his set, switching out various acoustic guitars and crooning a number of new Fleet Foxes-reminiscent tunes, his signature pipes echoing through the concert hall. Though a number of folks were hoping that Pecknold would join Newsom for a cover of the Kid Rock/Sheryl Crow duet "Picture,” like he did a few days prior, the two, sadly, didn’t grace the stage together.
Newsom, decked out in a perfectly form-fitting, strappy jade-green dress, took a seat alone on stage alone for her first song, “81,” a lovely track off her new three-disc album Have One On Me. For the rest of her set, which included a number of new songs, as well as a few Milk-Eyed Mender favorites like “Inflammatory Writ” and “Peach, Plum, Pear,” Newsom switched between piano and harp, joined by the gracefully deliberate percussionist Neal Morgan, guitarist and mandolin-player Ryan Francesconi, a trombonist and two violin players.
Though most of Newsom’s newer tunes hover in the 7-10 minute range, she managed to keep the crowd enthralled, conjuring up charming earthly tales and receiving enthusiastic applause after each song.
Here is Newsom playing one of my favorite tracks off her 2006 album Ys, “Cosmia." Sadly, the video shuts off mid-song, when the bouncer politely asked me to stop filming. Oh, well.
On a quick trip to Portland this past weekend to see folk siren Joanna Newsom (more on that later), I swung into the new Tender Loving Empire storefront, which borders the posh Pearl District. Not only is the record label home to Boise’s beloved Finn Riggins and run by members of Portland’s Jared Mees and the Grown Children, but the new storefront/record store/gallery also features handmade crafts, clothing, jewelry and art prints from Northwest artists.
Here are a few snapshots from the small, but totally-crammed-with-awesomeness gallery. And here’s a little thought for the TLE crew to ponder: should you ever grow out of space in your current spot, there’s plenty of room to open a satellite shop in downtown Boise. Just sayin'.
I just got back from the 2007 Association of Alternative Newsweeklies conference in Portland, Oregon. My colleagues and I spent three days in the downtown Hilton jetting from seminar to seminar learning about everything from writing more ethnic and racially diverse feature stories to making online listings more reader friendly and featuring more user generated content to Web and design development and I'm ready to implement it all. One great thing about the conference was that it was a little like I assume an AA meeting to be: I met so many people who face the same issues week after week that I do.
We ate amazing food at a place called Oba in the Pearl District and shopped at a sweet little vintage/new store called Magpie just blocks from the hotel.
Things I do know: Just one thing for now...check out a band called Point Juncture, WA. Melodic, dissonant rock + vibraphone = cool new fave. Mama Auto Boss is their 2005 release and so worth a listen.
Check out http://www.boiseweekly.com/.