A Gay Pride Alternative: Cut & Paste Rock & Roll
Now that Long Beach Pride has come and gone, it's time to turn our sights to another festival: the up-and-coming Cut & Paste Rock & Roll, taking place July 9 at DiPiazza's in Long Beach. In its fourth year, the festival presents bands with queer members and queer-centric artists as well as crafts and more for a night of music, art and community. Annie Parkhurst started the festival in 2008 and eventually started nonprofit The AMP Organization (which stands for art, music and philanthropy) in conjunction with the festival to donate the proceeds to queer high school youths in the form of cash scholarships, usable as the students' wish.
Students can earn the scholarships by filling out an application, writing an essay, including an artistic sample and submitting via AMP's website, at http://amporg.org. Applications are open through Aug. 5.
Parkhurst says she started the festival and organization out of the frustration she felt with mainstream events such as Pride that don't quite encompass the full spectrum of queerness and often don't speak to young high-school and college-aged people. Her event is $10, which guarantees entry, as well as hand-decorated "queer survival kits" with things like condoms, zines, band stuff (stickers, patches etc.) and coupons to queer-friendly local businesses.
"For $10 bucks you can get up close and person with 10+ LGBTQ bands/musicians, participate in live art, free DIY crafts and access to see and support the hottest queer designers, zine makers, fashionistas and community groups," Parkhurst explains. "The coolest part about CPRR is that the money raised at goes right back into the community with the AMP's Queer Youth Scholarship that supports queer students who are passionate about the arts."
She is expecting about 500 attendees throughout the day this year.
"It's almost as fun to organize as it is to attend," Parkhurst says. "The bands/artists/crafters and organizations we work with are so rad. Planned Parent hood is sending us a shitload of safe sex resources, condoms and other goodies."
This year, CPRR is giving out a gift card to local music shop Gilmore Music to one of the performers, but in "American Idol" fashion, attendees will pick the recipient by doling out tokens to the band they like the most. Whichever band receives the most tokens wins the gift card. Also, they'll be raffling off prizes, including an electric guitar autographed by all of the bands that perform.
So far, Parkhurst has on board Stars at Night, Cynical Baby, JFP and Cnote and LePanique, but says more names will be announced in June. Some of the bands are local, while others will be in from various tours and from San Francisco.
"All of the bands features queer musicians, which is so fun," she says. "Not even Pride can say that."
And, as the event benefits youths, the event is all ages. Check back for updates at http://www.cutandpasterockandroll.com.
DiPiazza's 5205 East Pacific Coast Highway
Long Beach, CA 90804
w/ Stars at Night, Cynical Baby, JFP and Cnote and LePanique
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