By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
IN SEARCH OF . . . SKATEJAM2000
Ryan the planner/publicist has been answering your questions about SkateJam2000—alloneword—for barely five minutes before he begins to dwindle into the kind of halfhearted responses that unmistakably suggest he'd like to get off the phone. You check your watch and take the hint. He's probably hungry. He could have a lunch date waiting. You almost apologize for placing your call just past noon. Before you beg pardon, however, he does first. "Sorry, man," Ryan says. "But I didn't get to bed until really, really late last night. Really late. I'm still not awake yet." The line is silent for a moment as you—and, hopefully, Ryan—take a break from talking about SkateJam2000 to reflect upon the benefits of proper rest. Then again, it's probably inevitable that a lack of sleep be factored into preparations for something like SkateJam 2000, a 12-hour get-up summit of get-down street cred. The event ambitiously intends to summon the far-flung and ever-expanding tangents of skate culture. The format would have the world's best street skaters performing a continuous exhibition while live performances extend from ranting hip-hop headliners like Method Man and Redman, Tha Alkaholics and Rahzel the Human Beatbox to the raving drum & bass of warehouse-party icons like Dieselboy and Alpha 17. You're pooped just thinking about how hectic and complicated putting on that kind of bash could get. "I was working," Ryan clarifies, re-emerging from his drowsy silence. "We've been wanting to do this—merging all these cultures and lifestyles together—for years and years and years. We've always wanted to do it." SkateJam2000 falls somewhat short of a labor of a lifetime, however. "We actually started working on it, oh, about four months ago," Ryan says. "We've been passing out fliers at every local club, B-boy jam, rave and skate park. To graffiti artists. Anywhere the kids are, we want them to come to SkateJam2000." Ryan gets quiet for a while again before continuing, kind of slowly. "Oh, yeah, that reminds me," he says. "I guess I didn't tell you that the venue has been changed."
Yep: 10 days before SkateJam 2000, the whole kit and caboodle has moved from that OC amphitheater newly re-named after a telecommunications device to the old National Orange Show Fairgrounds in San Bernardino this Saturday. You're gonna need directions: call (909) 888-6788 and press 2. (Dave Wielenga)
ONE COUNTY UNDER A GROOVE OC's moribund live electronic-music scene will get a boost this Saturday and every following Thursday throughout the summer when Mix:Media—what promoter Dave Mosso dubs "a live ambientacidsizzleheadfunxperimental jazzpsychesonicdub&basshopmindfry" (say it 10 times fast!)—debuts at Din Din at the Bamboo Terrace in Costa Mesa. Mosso tells LowBallAssChatter that Mix:Media will feature a whole mess of guest DJs and live bands each week, as well as a slew picked from the local talent pool—"OC's finest will all be in the house, trust us," he says. Saturday's bill includes Atticus Council and Lexaunculpt, with resident DJs Chowderhead and Ambient Guru spinning, and visuals provided by Monstervision. Mix:Media is also seeking video artists to show their work during the run. For more info, log on to www. zeroeffortnetwork.com/mixmedia, or buzz 'em at (949) 655-3000, ext. 1686. (Rich Kane)
BRUCE REDUX Bruce Springsteen didn't poke too much fun at OC during his May 21-22 Pond run, outside of blurting the standard "I'm going to Disneyland!" cliché during the closing moments of "Light of Day" on Sunday. Monday, though, when guitarist Steve Van Zandt set him up and asked where he was going, Bruce stepped to the mic and hollered, "I'M GOIN' TO D . . . DI . . . KNOTT'S BERRY FARM!" . . . Everybody knows that Los Angeles Timesmusic writers have always been rabid Springsteen hawks to the point of nausea, but did they really have to devote three straight days of coverage to the Springsteen stand—an "interview-with-the-fans"-type feature on Monday, followed by the required-by-law Robert Hilburn review of Sunday's show on Tuesday and Randy Lewis' Night Two review on Wednesday? The Monday gig wasn't even sold-out (though we're sure the couple who appeared to be happily boning each other during "If I Should Fall Behind" in otherwise-empty Section 421 didn't mind)! We're still waiting for the Times to come hang with the LowBallAssChatter peeps sometime and review a show by any of the nationally and internationally known touring bands that regularly pack local clubs like Club Mesa, Linda's Doll Hut, Chain Reaction, Koo's Art Cafe, and Lounges Gypsy and Lava, but we guess we'll have to wait for the day when Bruuuuuce puts in a surprise appearance in one of those rooms. . . . Springsteen fans donated a total of $7,600 to the Orange-based Second Harvest Food Bank, the charity that Bruce's management picked to table the shows (and which Bruce personally endorsed from the stage both nights). Second Harvest Food resource manager Ninnette Selsted tells LowBallAssChatter that her organization feeds some 185,000 hungry people in OC each month. To find out more about Second Harvest, log on to www.2ndharvestoc.org. (RK)
MIXED NOTES Given that the lineup of this year's KROQ Weenie Roast—set for June 17 at Edison Field, with bands like Creed, Godsmack, Incubus, Korn, Limp Bizkit, Lit and Stone Temple Pilots, among others—so grotesquely leans toward cock rock, shouldn't they call it the Weenie Fest instead? . . . Supersecret LowBallAss Chatter spy Allen Trautloff attended the Smashing Pumpkins' May 23 show at the Universal Amphitheatre; he reports that before the show, he'd forgotten all about the band's fierce following. "It was like being at a disenfranchised youth convention—lots of blue hair and bad piercings, people who looked really freaky besides what God had already done to them." At one point, Trautloff says, surly cue-ball head Billy Corgan asked the crowd if they thought of themselves as a name, a number or a statistic, to which one girl (5-foot-2, 18-24, Anglo) seated two rows away responded by screaming, "I'M A FUCKING STATISTIC!" . . . On May 22, the House of Representatives passed the Muhammad Ali Boxing Reform Act, designed to bring financial reform to the sport. The law, which passed the Senate in April and which President Bill Clinton signed on May 26, targets boxing promoters and is intended to ensure that boxers will get their fair share of earnings. It places a one-year limit on the length of a contract between a promoter and a boxer (contracts that usually favor the promoter) and prohibits a boxer's manager from having a financial relationship with a promoter. What the hell does this have to do with music? Money and clout, and why musicians—especially struggling local ones—rarely have either. Read this item again, but substitute the words "record label" for "promoter" and "musician" for "boxer." You get the idea. . . . The overworked LowBallAss Chatter staff sees tons of press releases flutter past our bleary eyeballs every day. So when we haggardly glimpsed a rather colorful, attention-getting flier sarcastically touting "The Romance of Teen Pregnancy" (which came in a stack of info on this past Sunday's Planned Parenthood benefit at the Coach House), we quite naturally assumed that the names listed were actual bands on the bill—bands like Loss of Freedom, Isolation, Weight Gain, Lack of Support, Stretch Marks, Frequent Urination, Skin Discoloration, Varicose Veins, Fatigue and Acne. Cool names—very punk rock, the lot of them, even if they don't exist. But the real participants were the Line and several high school bands with more ordinary names—kinda—such as Offset, No Respect, Mind of My Own and the Goons.