A van belonging to local happyfunpop band Bunky was stolen March 6 while parked on Columbia Street in Mission Hills. The band has offered a rather fitting reward-the privilege of singing backup vocals on its next album-to anyone with information leading to the recovery of the van.
The van is exceptionally pimped-out and recognizable. It's a 1992 white Chevrolet G20 conversion van with pinkish-purple trim and details, license plate 3LBJ429. There's a bugflector on the front hood, an extra large antenna, Nascar Racing sticker across the top of the windshield and "Tiarra" written in cursive. The interior is wood and mauve with four captain's chairs and a loft in back.
"We realize Bunky's Tiarra is probably getting stripped down in T.J. or something brutal like that," wrote drummer-vocalist Emily Joyce in a mass e-mail to the band's friends and fans. "But we figured we'd tell you folks to keep an eye out for it and call 911 if you spot it pimping around anywheres." The band can also be contacted through email@example.com.
The band does not have theft insurance and, if the van is not recovered, will suffer a total loss. Which brings up the fact that all car thieves suck, thieves who rip off starving artists suck even worse, and anyone who rips off Bunky-shoo-ins for San Diego's Most Congenial Musical Geniuses Award-is completely misdirected and evil. We'll personally throw scalding clam chowder at anyone who makes Joyce or guitarist-vocalist Rafter Roberts cry.
Weird Al's parents found dead
The parents of parody-rocker and one-time Fallbrook resident "Weird Al' Yankovic were found dead in their home in the North County rural community on Friday, the victims of apparent carbon monoxide poisoning.
Concerned relatives contacted authorities after they had not heard from the couple for several days, and paramedics entered the home to find it filled with smoke. A wood fire had been lit in the fireplace and the flue was closed. The body of Nick Yankovic, 86, was found in a chair in the living room. His wife Mary, 81, was found dead on the bathroom floor.
The 44-year-old performer is currently on tour in support of his latest album, Poodle Hat. Yankovic was informed of the tragedy while traveling in Minnesota. After hearing the news, he played a show in Mankato Saturday night, dedicating it to his parents.
Yankovic has not announced whether he will interrupt the tour to return to San Diego County for services.
Jazz guitarist Jaime Valle has a new CD, Vital Signs, released by the Blueport label this month. As usual, Valle is backed by a top-flight group, including omnipresent trumpeter Gilbert Castellanos and Big Mountain singer Quino.
Another local jazz guitarist, Patrick Yandall, is recording his next album, with guest appearances by saxophonist David Brecker, Spryo Gyra drummer Joel Rosenblatt and Letterman's Late Show bassist Will Lee. The album is due in June from New York label Apria Records.
Irradio releases their sophomore album this week, titled Make Up for the Inaugurated, recorded with hot local producer Ben Moore at Signature Sound Studios and released by Huntington Beach-based label Grey Flight. The group recently expanded to a quintet with the addition of keyboardist Edgar Alminar.
The Beachcomber in Mission Beach is the latest nightspot to add an open-mic night. Singer-songwriter Sage Little Wing will host the Tuesday evening event. There's no safety in numbers, however-this is for solo performers or duets only.
Those wanting their .04 seconds of fame may want to hit the As I Lay Dying show at Soma on April 15. MTV will bring its shaky-camera-style crew to film a video.
Emo-rockers Falling for Alba will have a CD-release party for their A Hundred Ways To Sorry EP, also at Soma, April 17.
It appears La Jolla native Gary Jules' rendition of "Mad World" is very, very unstoppable. After spending the early part of the year at No. 1 in Britain, the Tears for Fears cover has reached the coveted No. 1 spot on the AAA radio charts in the United States. The song's new video, directed by Michel Gondry (Bjork, White Stripes, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), was added this week to MTV, VH1 and Fuze.
The good news also continues for Switchfoot, who pick up another gold disc this week for their work on the 2002 Mandy Moore film, A Walk To Remember. The 2-year-old soundtrack contains both of the band's hits, "Learning to Breathe" and "Dare You to Move"-but odds are fans are picking it up for the breathless and otherwise unavailable duet between Moore and frontman Jonathan Foreman.