Member since Apr 7, 2010

Born & raised in Idaho. Boise resident for 20+ years. Full-time musician, part-time foodie, disc golfer, biker-triker, long-boarder, pinball enthusiast. I will do everything in… More »



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Updated on June 11, 2010 at 12:25 PM

Recent Comments

Re: “Best Local Band

Yeah, something would be nice to shake it up a little. Though BtS DID actually play a couple shows in Idaho this year ;-) Big Wow primarily plays private events, so that's an interesting win... Way to go Sal!
Sometimes BW puts the previous year's winner as the easiest option to check... so anyone that's just voting on a couple unrelated things and not that focused on Arts/Entertainment will just blow through and check the first box they see in that category. Not saying it's unlikely the "incumbent" wouldn't win again anyway-- but do they really need that kind of assist to do it?

0 likes, 21 dislikes
Posted by Furrball on 09/24/2014 at 11:07 AM

Re: “Booze Rules

Keep going...
What about city streets/sidewalks?
Private property downtown?
Is there a web resource for which parks allow it (with the restrictions you mentioned) and which ones prohibit it entirely?
What about in a parked car? If so, does it matter where the car is parked?
Any other more thorough resources on this subject you can suggest?

3 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Furrball on 09/04/2014 at 2:18 PM

Re: “Idaho Ho Ho Raises a Ho-le Lot of Money for Idaho Foodbank

$6K for the food bank!! Way to go go go, my fellow musicians!

Posted by Furrball on 02/03/2011 at 11:29 AM

Re: “Guitars and more guitars: Paul Grove and Workin' on Fire (but not together)

I'll bet that's true of many of our community's performing guitarists-- some background in classical guitar somewhere along the way (whether they liked it or not ;-).
Yes, Johann Helton is still on staff at BSU as adjunct faculty. He's a wonderful instructor and excellent musician, and I'm sure he will do what he can there. But we won't very likely have the resources we used to from BSU without at least two of us there to dig for them.

Posted by Furrball on 12/09/2010 at 3:51 PM

Re: “Plays From the Alley—Week One



Just in case you think anything about the character Jimmy was cruelly portrayed, or his love affair was contrived to make him look silly... it's based in reality, and was explored through the remainder of the play, and BOTH sides of the argument were exposed for both thoughtful justification AND narrow-minded dismissals of the meaning each side gave to the situation. Another interesting and worthy-of-seeing twist that somehow didn't find ink in the reviewer's column.

0 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Furrball on 07/08/2010 at 5:45 PM

Re: “Plays From the Alley—Week One

Being "appalled... insulted... disgusted" seems a bit overreactive, considering that the reviewer shut off his objectivity 20 minutes into the play. No matter how strong one's personal emotional attachments to the "gamer community," or one's distaste for detestable male archetypes like Irwin (even though he's simply not anywhere near as vile as the reviewer tried to dismiss him), anyone writing a review owes this play a "reaction check."

You can hate the character Irwin, but the simple fact that Atlakson was able to cultivate that sort of reaction means he did his job as a writer to a highly visible degree. There are far worse men than Irwin in the world, and his development, breakdown, and obviously intentionally fluffy redemption in the end lead me to believe you were SUPPOSED to think he's still a pig, but still within the (unfortunate, but true) societally acceptable norm.

I find it almost manufacturedly mean-spirited to denounce the entire script's legitimacy for existence or further development based on such a reactionary dlslike for one character, and for a booboo on the knee of escapist FRP zealots.

I also feel that the reviewer's cessation of objectivity led him to miss some crucial developments (spoiler alert):
-- the female lead, Fo, admitted to using sex as a manipulation over her husband Irwin all the years of their marriage, and that she only called it rape this time to twist the argument;
-- the pizza girl became one of the best characters I've known as the detached "voice of reason," the reality/fantasy check, the middle ground, and one of the most VITAL parts of the entire story... and the reviewer made not a single mention (an unforgivable oversight if this play were to be objectively reviewed);
-- Nick Garcia's part was excellent, agreed... however, in the discussion afterward, he mentioned truly embodying his character only after, and with, the help of the reaction from the crowd-- leading this viewer to believe that Atlakson's archetypes and portrayal rang true with the majority of attendees, so much so that it helped the actors define their characters!

Overall, I find this reviewer's diatribe not as defensible as some of the other "tough love" music reviews of his that I've read (and enjoyed!) -- call me a conspiracy theorist, but it's as if there is a very personal raw nerve being poked, and perhaps an ulterior-motive attack placed somewhere in between the lines.

0 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Furrball on 07/08/2010 at 5:33 PM

Re: “Bands I Saw Last Week

Wow, there's a lot of rabbit-holes to this topic... I'll try to stay on ground level here.

I love a good written debate, a good discussion... as long as people think about what they're writing, and not react only from the gut, but explore their opinion from both the heart AND the mind. I encourage everyone to re-read the reviews Josh Gross wrote that sparked all this reaction, and honestly ask yourself if you really believe these were just misguided attempts to make himself look cool by dissing some local bands, or if he might've really put some thought into his reviews in an attempt to describe the band to the reader. Some may not like what I have to say about this, just like they didn't like Mr. Gross's reviews, but opening up a civilized discussion about it is a great way to explore WHY you don't like it. You'll notice a lot of question marks in this-- because I don't know the answers, and I'd like to hear your ideas.

I admit that it's refreshing and that I'm happy to see a reviewer pointing and yelling, "the Emperor has no clothes" even though it doesn't necessarily jive with what we've gotten used to in this friendly, supportive music scene of ours. One of the other commenters on this thread mentions "budding musical careers" and "honing and refining their talent." Yes, it takes stage time to get better at being on stage (the old catch-22). Yes, we need "proving grounds" and venues for emerging musicians to shape their show. But maybe practicing more at home, taking some more lessons, learning more about music and your chosen instrument(s), BEFORE expecting to show up on a stage and have everyone love you and write glowing, encouraging "pat-on-the-head" reviews for a lackadaisical, amateurish performance should also be part of this discussion.

I've had a bad night or two (or forty) on stage; I'm sure I'll have a few more, despite my best efforts. And I hope a reviewer isn't there to see it... but it's that much more incentive to put a quality show together, so that if I DO get a bad review, perhaps the reviewer's taste in music just doesn't jive with mine, and at least I feel I played a quality show. That's my job, and if I get caught being lazy, playing without passion, "phoning it in," or playing something I haven't practiced enough to play well, then maybe I SHOULD get called out. And here's what I feel is a VERY important point: if I CHOOSE to play a style of music that intentionally sounds amateurish and unpolished, then of course I run the risk of someone not recognizing the "genius" of my carefully calculated craft and calling it boring, sloppy, whiny, or complaining about the weakness of my songwriting.

It's also the responsibility of a reviewer to know the intent of the show... is this a loose get-together of friends in support of their buddies jamming out? Or is this a show that's legitimately trying to call itself professional entertainment? Some people dedicate their lives to honing the skills needed to do this, and depend on the income they make from it. Is it fair for those professionals to have to compete with amateurs or less experienced acts just because they get a review (that is misleading, or undeservedly positive) that draws an audience to their show? Should acts that are donating their time and skills to a benefit show or philanthropic cause possibly be held to a different standard when being reviewed in a public paper?

Music's so subjective. What is "good"? What is "bad"? How do you describe something like music, movies, art, food, etc. without discussing whether you like it or not? At what level of training, education, and experience can you really profess to be expert enough to say what's good or bad? There aren't any universal truths to these. Perhaps the distinction that should be made here, however, is that maybe a review should be more objective: it should be an account of the content of the show, a description of what it sounded like, what instruments were used, what the visual display was, etc. And then an opinion of the show, a subjective, personal reaction, should be separated from the actual review. That way, instead of the reader misinterpreting the critic's personal reaction as "opinion cloaked as fact," the reader can recognize trends in that reviewer's preferences and taste, and decide whether they generally agree or disagree with that critic.

Whatever the process, let's just keep the discussion goin'.

Posted by Furrball on 05/19/2010 at 12:11 PM

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