Photo by Jeff "Turbo" Corrigan
It comes from O.B. smelling like patchouli. It sports sandals and power crystals. It takes up the entire dance floor with its Deadhead- and Stevie Nicks-inspired fairy dances. It starts simply, at places like Air Conditioned Lounge on Wednesday nights (pictured). Next thing you know, it's stinking up U-31, bumming all your smokes and muttering things like, “Wow, that DJ's aura was, like, so bright” and “Do I remember you from Burning Man?” Beware the hippiester. You may not have spotted one yet, but its good vibes are coming for you.
Radio Room, the City Heights music venue, is in the process of being sold to Scot Blair, owner of Small Bar in University Heights and Hamilton's Tavern in South Park.
Chris Heaney, one of Radio Room's five co-owners, said they agreed to sell the venue because maintaining it wasn't worth the money. “It was just a lot of work for breaking even,” Heaney told CityBeat.
Blair said he plans to make Radio Room more of a bar, “so it's not just a band carrying the night.” Under his ownership, the bar will open earlier in the day, bands will play four or five nights a week and there will be a more diverse lineup compared with the current focus on punk and metal bands. He will also make some “cosmetic changes,” he said. “I like aesthetics, and we're going to have some cool things for this bar.”
The sale is in escrow. Ownership will officially change in July, Heaney said.
On Wednesday, May 26, old-school rockers Glory will reunite to perform at Anthology's “Legends of SD Rock,” a benefit for the California Music Project, a nonprofit that organizes youth music fellowships. Glory vets Jerry Raney, Jack Butler and Jack Pinney will also perform with their bands, The Farmers, Private Domain and Modern Rhythm. Also that night, gay nightclub Rich's will hold “Monster Ball,” a benefit for the American Red Cross, featuring DJ Kiss. On Saturday, May 29, Oakland hip-hop duo Zion I will perform at the Epicentre in a benefit for the Shirt the Kids Foundation, a San Diego-based charity that aids impoverished children in the Philippines. Filipino rappers Kiwi and Rocky Rivera and California DJ trio RRS Feed will open. Also on Saturday, at Humphrey's Backstage Live, local rockers Mama Red and Hugh Gaskins will perform at Rock Against MS, a benefit for the National MS Society.
At SOMA on Friday, May 28, metalcore bands Comes the Horsemen and Tragedy and Triumph will herald the release of Horsemen's new album, Fragile Masks, and Tragedy's new EP, The Ground Beneath Us. Lower Definition, Casino Madrid, Vanguard, Deadbeat Nightlife, Lindbergh Skies and City Delivered will also play. On Saturday, May 29, jazz saxophonist Ian Tordella will perform at Dizzy's with his quartet and NYC guitarist Jeff Miles to celebrate the release of his new album, Magnolia. That night at Lestat's, Emersen will play a show for the release of their new CD.
The Enrique Experience
Blame it on the gossip blogs. When I started in this business, I had two firm intentions: acquire a lock of Taylor Lautner's armpit hair and one day secure an interview with my idol, George Lopez. The latter came true on Saturday evening amid a sandy setting in Imperial Beach's Dunes Park for the world premiere of Marmaduke—in which Lopez lends his voice to Carlos, the Russian blue cat sidekick to Owen Wilson's comic-strip Great Dane.
A portable screen was in place, alongside gigantic prop fire hydrants and rawhide bones. There was a life-sized cake of the legendary canine and two smaller satellite ones of co-stars Lopez and Wilson. The red carpet was rolled out, and in the distance, a glimpse of the Chicano comic grasping wife Ann (who gave him a kidney in 2005) for dear life. You see, a story had just come out that involves a prostitute-fueled cheating scandal. Needless to say, his demeanor was awkward at best.
Giddy, I waited patiently at the end of the press line, and I mean the very end—behind The Military Press and The East County Gazette. Sadly, lackluster was the word of the day.
Lopez's reaction regarding Taco Bell's new half torta / half tostada Tortada: “frightening.” Lopez on channeling his inner pussy for this role: “I, I, uh, don't know how to answer that question, actually,” he said with a nervous laugh. On his upcoming stint as Speedy Gonzales? “They're still writing the script. It should be good.”
Luckily, Wilson was a little more vibrant, gushing about his character. “It was daunting, you know? Because this comic strip has been going around for 50 years or something,” he said. “So, you do feel sort of like you want to deliver on this connection that people have with that and do something funny.” Trying to save this sinking ship, I asked him if brother Luke
really has amazing cell-phone coverage.
“Apparently, yeah,” Wilson said.
“He's throwing all those letters around the United States, absolutely,” Lopez added.
Taylor Lautner, I'm coming after you.
Our semi-regular guide to after-dark events we're either crazy about or just really looking forward to.
“Dub Dorado” @ El Dorado: Joseph Maldonado (aka DJ Headshake) says the hip Downtown bar has rented out a “huge ass sound system” for the launch of a new event hosted by San Diego Dubstep that celebrates earth-shaking bass music. Expect spastic breakbeats from L.A. duo Camo UFOs, crunked-out rhymes from L.A.'s MC Whiskey and heaving wobble bass from locals Austin Speed, Osal8, Mr. Biggs and Headshake. Wednesday, May 26.
“Enrique Experienced” @ Glashaus: Shameless self-promotion alert! Celebrating the second anniversary of his Nightgeist column, Enrique Limón will unveil original works by artists who re-imagined his most memorable columns. But I'm not hyping this just because Enrique has pestered us nonstop about it—I'm looking forward to DJ sets by Miss Lady D, The Office Twins, Miss Toats and Da Perv, and I'm eager to see what The Burning of Rome keyboardist / singer Adam Traub will do with a mandolin. Saturday, May 29.
“Jivewire” @ The Casbah: This semi-regular dance party couldn't have a more intriguing lineup. There's a rapper who excoriates polluters (D-Pain), an electro dance act sporting the most fabulous lion mane this side of the San Diego Zoo (Lion Cut), a pop star in the making with an amazing voice and catchy beats (Smile Now Cry Later) and a silly group with a ballad about a “double-flush deuce” (Free*Stars). Sunday, May 30.
Deadmau5 @ Hard Rock Hotel: Speaking of intriguing acts, how about a DJ who offers up trance-inducing, robotic techno while wearing a huge Mickey Mouse mask? Leave the psychedelics at home for this one. Sunday, May 30.
Artist: Rifat Ziadeh
Origins: Helping out at a cousin's surf shop at just 9 years old, a young Ziadeh was exposed to the likes of Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and Sublime in between folding shirts and hanging board shorts. Later in life, his zest for music was sealed after he helped a friend move. The friend offered him some cash in exchange. “I was like, ‘No, dude, I'm not gonna take money from you,' so he, uh, whatchamacallit, said, ‘You love music—I've got the perfect gift for you.'” That gift was a mixer and a set of turntables. Displaced from the mortgage industry, the 28-year-old of Palestinian descent took on music full-time.
Philosophy: Always find the silver lining. “I've never had a bad gig, because my worst day in music is better than my best day at the office,” Ziadeh, whose first name means “to uplift,” says. “The only thing I don't like is having to chase down a paycheck.”
Sound: It's vast and runs the gamut “from good house to electro house.”
Stats: In just two years, Ziadeh's managed to be booked alongside Dirty South, Steve Aoki and Sebastian Ingrosso. His latest venture? A Saturday residency at Downtown hotspot Voyeur, where he often makes hip-hop-loving good ol' boys cross over to the electro dark side. “I have some really close friends that are Marines,” he says, “and to see a Marine drugged out on ecstasy, dancing away, is always a trip for me.”