Wednesday, November 30, 2011

And This Blog Loves Elvis Costello


If any recording artist today is clearly a musician after Psychotronic Paul's jazzed-up heart, it would be Elvis Costello. In this piece from Reuters, Don't Buy My Box Set, Buy Satchmo's, he plugs the new Louis Armstrong DVD box set and gives some love to the intrepid musicologists who put it together.

Here's Elvis, on stage with Chet Baker. What a great concert that must have been!




Monday, November 28, 2011

This Saturday Night: KFJC Psychotronix Film Festival At Foothill College


The amazing 1955 Kelvinator Foodarama Refrigerator-Freezer

Alas, another December has rolled around, so that means it's time for the customary KFJC Psychotronix Film Festival to present yet another hallucinatory excursion through the irritated bowels of popular culture.



Yes, that means the usual suspects - trailers from schlocky drive-in movies featuring guys in stupid-looking robot and gorilla suits, well-meaning but now ridiculous 1950's educational films, vintage TV commercials and theatre ads, cartoon rarities, Japanese "thunder lizard" epics, musical comedy shorts, kidvid, serial chapters, puppet animation, Busby Berkeley style pre-Code insanity - will be on hand.



As will be the inevitable uber-campy Soundies. . .







And such high-stylin' tres cool Scopitones as these:









I am, indeed, way too damn lazy to write a blog or a manifesto, but present these shows as something of a personal reaction against all standard rules of curating.

Since I personally find devoting a screening to one director, one genre or one series about as fascinating as watching Black Friday-priced-to-move white latex paint dry, the Psychotronix Film Festival throws a wide variety of celluloid snippets from different places, genres, running times, techniques or time periods together for no apparent reason other than that sticking to one thing bores me.



Curator-archivist-producers-mad scientists Sci Fi Bob Ekman, Scott Moon and myself, supported by ace KFJC soundman Austin Space, create the program on the fly; we respond to audience reaction and select films accordingly in what I've repeatedly termed the "And Now For Something Completely Different" approach to film programming. Works for us!



The next KFJC Psychotronix Film Festival will return (by nothing remotely resembling popular demand) to spacious room 5015 on the Foothill College campus in the lovely Los Altos Hills, not far from the dreaded Silicon Valley on Saturday, December 3, 2011. Showtime is 7:00 p.m.



Ever-facile movie music expert and linguistically nimble host of "The Norman Bates Memorial Soundtrack Show" Robert Emmett m.c.s the festivities with panache, bon mots and a carefully picked selection of cheesy door prizes.


$5 admission benefits the innovative, un-corporate and fearless KFJC 89.7. You'll also need $2 for a parking permit.


Saturday, November 05, 2011

November 5, 2011 Is Bank Transfer Day

To paraphrase something I wrote on my January 2, 2010 posting:

"Every now and then I stop producing classic movie events, listening to jazz music, watching ancient short comedies and Scopitones long enough to ask . . . questions. And I invariably end up wandering circuitously through the dark woods of further questions."

Here are a few questions I like:
  • What can we, as citizens, given the massive corruption in our political system, do to make a difference?
  • Any way I can have checking and savings accounts that do not support sleazy business practices, sleazier lobbyists and the even - if one can imagine such a thing - sleazier politicians they bribe?"
  • Want to stop supporting ridiculous profits made by banks bailed out by TARP (and bonuses to the same greedy bastards who crashed the global economy. . . but got rewarded handsomely for their staggering ineptitude)?
  • Have I, unwittingly, Elmer Fudd-like, been aiding and abetting all of the above via my 401 K or IRA account and thus, am absolutely part of the problem?

Well, one way and signpost towards a solution, folks is to pull your moolah, your cashola, your simoleons, your do-re-me out of the Too Big To Fail banks and relocate it to smaller financial institutions and credit unions - the places that actually invest in our communities.

Supporting this worthy goal, Saturday, November 5, is Bank Transfer Day.

The Move Your Money website makes it pretty darn easy for consumers to identify community banks and smaller financial institutions in their neighborhoods.

If enough squeezed middle-class consumers migrate a substantial chunk of their business from irresponsible "too big to fail" banks. behemoths to community banks and credit unions, the message - which has yet to reach our elected representatives from the totally slimy GOP and only somewhat less slimy Democrats (and possibly never will) - will be loud and clear.

One can do a little research and find out which financial institutions spent gazillions - in some cases TARP money - to successfully bribe Senators and Representatives to kill or at least severely weaken financial reform (note - the bastards succeeded; the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act was watered down from the blazing Bacardi 151 we needed to tepid, weak lemonade).

Let's hit the greedy assholes where it hurts most: their wallets.