This Friday, November 22 and Sunday, Nov. 24, at 7 p.m., Jo Miller “Tells a Tall Tale” from her memoir, Never Holler Whoa at a Horserace. The show at the Garden House, 2336 15th Ave South, will include music and storytelling, and a reunion with former Burly Roughnecks bandmates Dave Keenan and Nova Devonie (aka Miles and Karina) for a country-swing jam.
You’ll probably recognize most of the locations in the video for “Just Another Day” by emcees Gabriel Teodros, Mic Flont, and Ka.lil, vocalist Jill Laxamana and producer Uce Wayne. This updated version of Queen Latifah’s song is a tribute to Beacon Hill, featuring neighborhood landmarks including Red Apple, The Station, Jefferson Park and Fou Lee Market. The video was directed by Eric Miller and Mic Flont.
November 16 brings a fundraising show to the Garden House, raising funds to benefit Mobility Builders, a local non-profit that provides wheelchairs to under-privileged children in developing countries. The bands Ache and Loud Motor will perform. Doors are at 6 p.m., and the $25 admission fee includes a few drinks and some snacks.
The Garden House is at 2336 15th Ave South.
That old dusty violin or clarinet in your attic could help fifth-graders who want to learn to play.
Beacon Hill International School is seeking donated trumpets, clarinets, flutes, and violins (1/2- or 1/4-size only) for the 45 students who want to study music. The school has only a few instruments to lend, and many students who cannot afford to rent or purchase.
If you have an instrument to donate, please drop it off in the front office at 2021 14th Ave. S. on North Beacon Hill.
Today the free Beacon Rocks! festival returns to Roberto Maestas Festival Street from 1-5 p.m. with the theme: “Move It! Transportation Exploration!”
Along with four hours of local music, other activities will include making and decorating your own hula hoop, and building a paper boat to sail in the wading pools.
Here’s the entertainment schedule:
1:00 p.m. Random Axe – featuring Jack LeNoir and Betty Jean Williamson
1:45 p.m. Slow Bike Race
2:15 p.m. Chava Mirel
3:00 p.m. Splinter Dance Company
3:45 p.m. Haiku Contest
4-4:45 p.m.: Pavel Shepp Trio
Beacon Hill musicians, poets, and more — you’re wanted for the Beacon Hill Boombox, a collection of recordings by Beacon Hill artists. The recordings will play in several neighborhood businesses in August and September.
Here’s the announcement:
Are you a recording artist who lives or works on Beacon Hill?
GET IN THE BOOMBOX!
We are creating the Beacon Hill Boombox, an audio catalogue of artists who call Beacon Hill home. In August and September, the boombox will be located in several different neighborhood establishments, featuring the diverse sounds and expressions of Beacon Hill for all to listen to and experience on cassette tapes. We want to hear you!
Submit your recorded work –- music, poetry, anything recorded! –- in order to be part of this project. Your recordings will also be featured online on a digital archive.
Please send an MP3 or link to a stream of your work to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also leave physical submissions at The Station Café (16th Ave. S. and Beacon Ave. S.).
The deadline is July 30th, so you still have time to put something together.
Among many other creative lifetimes including co-founding the Home Alive organization for women’s self-defense and graduating from and then working for Cornish College Of The Arts, Beacon Hill’s Gretta Harley co-created (with Sarah Rudinoff and Elizabeth Kenny) These Streets, a rock musical derived from interviews with women on the Seattle rock scene. She graciously took a few questions over email.
Beacon Hill Blog: How is Beacon Hill like, and unlike, Long Island, where you grew up? How long have you lived on Beacon Hill and what are your impressions of the place? How, if at all, does it influence your work?
Gretta Harley: I bought my condo on Beacon Hill at the height of the market, 2006 — so I am “stuck” here. I love Beacon Hill. It is a neighborhood, with small businesses and a lot of families, and diversity. Tree-lined streets are an easy place for me to walk my dog. Fantastic views! Jefferson Park is awesome! I know a lot of my neighbors. There are block parties and neighborhood watches. Long Island was suburban, so the tree lined streets and neighborhood feel are similar in that way.
There were no good views on Long Island. It’s completely flat with lots of concrete and fewer parks, but the beach was a stone’s throw away. The Atlantic Ocean is beautiful and the beaches where I grew up were gorgeous (before Hurricane Sandy).
Long Island is a very very different culture. Where do I begin? Long Island is a trip. The people are a little harder on the outside… very direct with their opinions (which I like), and not as PC as in Seattle. I like the liberal ideals of Seattle. Several famous hip-hop artists from my generation come from my section of Long Island, but the Island was extremely segregated when I grew up. A bit of white, macho, braggadociousness. I still have a lot of connections and love over there though. Ya know, this is a conversation over a martini…
I am not sure if I can identify specifically how the place I live influences my work, but I do believe that any environment does. I did say Beacon Hill has a neighborhood feel, but I live on the main drag, so the energy of movement and city is always right outside of my windows. It’s not quiet. I like that.
Beacon Hill Blog: You mention in your bio that your Barbie dolls gave rock concerts. What were their favorite jams?
Gretta Harley: Ha ha. When I was a little kid playing with dolls, I listened to The Beatles, Grass Roots, Argent, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Carol King, Elton John — so those were the jams those dolls’d be jammin’. I got most of the records by stealing a mailer for a Columbia Records offer. “Buy 10 Records For A Penny.” I thought that sounded good. And I had a penny. I went through the catalog and checked off my records (largely by liking band names and record artwork), and put my choices and a penny in an envelope.
When the box of records came, my mother was furious. She got on the phone immediately and chewed out the person who answered the phone from Columbia (because the deal was that you got charged every month after the first delivery for the 5-10 records they’d send you every month, at full price). My mom let me keep the records I ordered, and thus began the merging of my pastime of doll weirdness, with music.
I recall building a stage for the dolls out of spare wood blocks my dad would bring home from his shop, stored in an old refrigerator box for my using. Those blocks were a constant source of re-building “sets” I designed for my pleasure.
Ya know, back in the 60s, we weren’t scheduled like kids are today. We made our own entertainment. I spent a lot of time alone. I didn’t have a ton of toys, so I made do with what I had. I never felt like I was missing anything. My turntable was as much my joy as the “characters” I created out of my Barbies and “Little Kiddles.” I also remember making clothes for my dolls, ’cause I didn’t like the ones they came with. And I cut their hair and drew on their bodies.
I was never a fan of Ken. I thought he was a dweeb.
The Garden House Blues series returns this Friday, April 19, when Elnah Jordan, Eric Verlinde, and Tom McElroy perform at the Garden House, 2336 15th Ave. S. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the concert starts at 8 p.m.
Vocalist Elnah Jordan performed the role of the legendary Bessie Smith in San Francisco for 2-1/2 years in The Evolution of the Blues, and later starred in Street Dreams, an Off-Broadway musical drama. She has since built a reputation as a powerful singer in jazz, R&B, gospel and blues. Pianist Eric Verlinde‘s fifth CD, Firewalker, collects some of his more than 150 compositions ranging “from Latin jazz to swinging hard-bop.” Jazz guitarist Tom McElroy will open the show.
Before the show begins, Beacon Bento will be available with meals delivered to your table from Inay’s Kitchen and Travelers Thali House for $10 or less per meal.
For more info, see the website.
March’s installment of ROCKiT Community Arts‘ First Sunday Night Folk Club on Sunday, March 3, will feature the Nova Nervosa Trio, a trio consisting of accordion, bass, and guitar, described as “quivery Tunes from a musical mind.”
Also performing that night will be Jo Miller, who will read from her memoirs with musical accompaniment from Orville Johnson.
The show starts at 7 p.m., with doors opening at 6 p.m. for the Beacon Bento dinner. Location, as always, is the Garden House, 2336 15th Ave. S. Admission is $8 at the door, and free for kids under 12. Advance tickets are available online through Brown Paper Tickets.