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Courtney Barnett @ The Loft, 10/16/14 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Steven Seachrist   
You may have heard her Tiny Desk Concert on NPR, or seen a YouTube clip of her popular song "Avant Gardener." But that is not the Courtney Barnett who came to Atlanta last Thursday night.  No, this one stormed the Loft with thundering garage rock versions of formerly cuter and quieter songs and did not let up until she had exhausted her repertoire.

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Last Days in Vietnam PDF Print E-mail
Written by David T. Lindsay   
ImageLast Days In Vietnam [NR]: There were two types of Vietnam War protester: those who believed the war was mishandled and unwinnable; and those like Jane Fonda who wanted the North Vietnamese to win! On Dec 9, 1949 when Nationalists led by Chiang Kai-Shek were driven from mainland China, Pres. Truman didn't think it was worth American lives to support Formosa against Mao. When Japan surrendered in 1945, the French returned to Southeast Asia to reclaim their colony only to encounter the Moscow-trained revolutionary Ho Chi Minh. Twenty years later, 58,000 Americans would lose their lives in Vietnam, which has been a moral burden ever since. The North Vietnamese had considered Richard Nixon a madman who would re-enter into conflict if they moved into South Vietnam; once he resigned the presidency they saw an open invitation to take Saigon, and in March 1975, invaded. This documentary by filmmaker Rory Kennedy covers the imponderable pullout from Saigon as helicopters evacuate Americans and as many refugees as possible. A fascinating look at the panic and chaos at war's end and the inevitable re-education or execution of those left behind.
Georgia Film News 10/15/14 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Clark   
ImageMatt Bomer (pictured), currently filming the Magic Mike sequel in Savannah, has joined the cast of the Ryan Gosling/Russell Crowe film The Nice Guys, which will start filming in Atlanta on Oct. 23rd (including a scene at the Peters Street bridge in Castleberry Hill on Oct. 27th), lasting through Dec. 19th. Cayla Brady (Dolphin Tale) and Beau Knapp (Super 8, The Signal) have also joined the action drama.

According to the TV/film Help Wanted Hotline page of the Georgia Department of Economic Development, a film called Deathless will be prepping and shooting in Atlanta as early as next month and lasting through January. Liev Schreiber (Ray Donovan, Sabretooth from the X-Men films) and Diane Kruger (FX’s The Bridge) are supposed to be starring in the thriller, although so far no further solid information has surfaced about the project; I have to assume it’s the Deathless listed in pre-production on the IMDb webpage, with Anthony Bagarozzi as director and co-writer. Bagarozzi co-wrote the screenplay for The Nice Guys, while Schreiber is currently in Atlanta shooting The Fifth Wave.

Vacation will be shooting a multi-day scene set at a “Burning Man”-type festival in Stockbridge Oct. 16-20. Also, Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo have arrived in Atlanta for their roles in the movie because, well, what else do they have to do?

Gregg Allman has filed a new claim against the producers of Midnight Rider, wherein he claims that they agreed to indemnify him from any liability for the Feb. 20th freight train accident that killed camera assistant Sarah Jones. The musician is also seeking a dismissal from the civil lawsuit filed by Jones’ family, asserting that while he and manager Michael Lehman were technically credited as executive producers of the film, they had no direct oversight over the production, the locations selected for filming or the manner in which filming was handled. Which makes sense. In reality, the target of any lawsuit involved with this case should be director/producer Randall Miller, his wife, producer Jody Savin, and others directly responsible for the decisions that led to this entirely preventable tragedy. Meanwhile, the first announced court date in the involuntary manslaughter case against Miller, Savin and executive producer Jay Sedrish is set for March 9th.

To promote the Nov. 14th release of Dumb and Dumber To, Universal Pictures is bringing the “Mutt Cutts” van to Atlanta on Thursday, Oct. 16th to motor around the city, stopping off at various locations where the Jim Carrey/Jeff Daniels flick was filmed. While neither of the stars will be in accompaniment, we thought you should know anyway, in case you happen to see this thing pull up at a stoplight next to you while you’re cleaning your nose.

The USA network has renewed its first-year relationship drama series Satisfaction for a second season. Production on the ten episodes is expected to begin sometime early next year in Atlanta.

Courtney Barnett (Oct.14 issue) PDF Print E-mail
Written by Glen Sarvady   
ImageCourtney Barnett: Gardening at Noon
By Glen Sarvady


Courtney Barnett is not a slacker. It’s 9 a.m. on a Wednesday morning and she’s already heads-down in her home office in Melbourne, Australia. “Got up early, getting lots of stuff done,” she tells me over a Skype connection clear enough to reveal the sniffles of her hay fever.

This industriousness is noteworthy because it runs counter to Barnett’s accepted persona, one that’s undoubtedly influenced by the lyrics on her A Sea of Split Peas double EP. The reception to that release has kept Barnett on the road for the past year (“I never thought we’d get so much traction that we could continue to tour Europe and the US with a band like this”), including her first-ever overseas experiences.

Barnett is just returning from “holiday,” which turns out to be no more than a couple of days’ downtime she tacked onto some New Zealand dates. “I’m not really a holiday person,” she confides. “When I go away I’m just writing anyway, but it’s nice to get away from emails and stuff.” Despite her travels she’s also managed to keep her Milk Records label running. “I can keep it going online with a great team of friends and young people looking to get to know the music industry, just like I did when I was 18 or 19.”

Courtney Barnett’s breakout song from A Sea of Split Peas is “Avant Gardener,” an unassuming ditty that doubles as an ideal summation of her charms. Atop some light psychedelic guitar Barnett unfurls a stream of consciousness tale of a gardening mishap that I’ve read described as both allergic reaction and panic attack. “It was kind of both, actually,” she explains. “I got a creepy rash in the garden, then when I couldn’t breathe I started freaking out. Even the doctors aren’t sure what it was.”  The ordeal landed Barnett in the hospital for a night, but within a couple of days she was back at her post as a bartender – a job she only gave up early this year when Split Peas took off.

Another standout track, “History Eraser,” recaps a meandering crush dream with a humorous whimsy (“in the cab ride home I’ll sing you a Triffids song,” her newfound beau promises) that recalls Robyn Hitchcock. Barnett has also drawn comparisons to Eleanor Friedberger for her circuitous narratives but she’s unfamiliar with ’90s indie darling Barbara Manning, whose homespun charm and timeless quality also strikes me as a close cousin.

Though she tours as a quartet Barnett also relishes the challenge of playing solo (which she did earlier this year on a tour of her native country with Billy Bragg), which she calls terrifying in a positive sense. “I get so much more nervous playing solo – with a band you can hide behind the wall of sound, and you feel safer with friends. You feel more naked, emotionally vulnerable. It’s terrifying, but a good thing if you don’t let it mess with your head.”

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Georgia Music News 10/13/14 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Clark   
ImageNot only did the B-52’s Kate Pierson introduce Danny Beard for his “Non-Performer Award” induction into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame during the awards ceremony on Saturday night, but she also joined the Rainmen for three songs – the B-52’s “52 Girls” and “Roam” as well as "Candy," her hit with Iggy Pop  – during Beard’s after-party at the Elliott Street Deli & Pub. But the big news of the night was that Danny Beard found a suit to wear.

The history-focused Tompkins Square label is releasing a double-CD package of gospel/folk singer Bessie Jones recordings culled from Alan Lomax’s original tapes of Jones from 1959 through ’66. The material includes solo performances from Jones (who died in 1984 at age 82 of complications from leukemia), as well as songs with the Georgia Sea Island Singers and collaborators including Mable Hillery, Rev. Gary Davis and Sweet Papa Stovepipe. Set for release on Oct. 28th, Get in Union: Bessie Jones with the Georgia Sea Island Singers and Others will feature 26 previously unreleased tracks among its musical riches.

Bradford Cox is one of five songwriter/composers chosen to participate in the world premiere of “Exposed: Songs for Unseen Warhol Films” this week at the Carnegie Music Hall in Pittsburgh. Cox will join Tom Verlaine, Martin Rev (Suicide), Dean Wareham and Eleanor Friedberger at the Oct. 17th event, composing and performing onstage as a series of previously unseen Warhol films are shown. It’s part of the 20th anniversary activities for Pittsburgh’s Andy Warhol Museum.

Gringo Star will have a new 7-inch out Oct. 17th via Grand Rapids label dizzybird records, “Long Time Gone” b/w “World of Spin.”

Six dudes in the band but they call it Seven Handle Circus. The Atlanta folk-rockers will release their debut album, Shadows on the Wall produced by Better Than Ezra’s Tom Drummond, on Oct. 20th. Two nights earlier, they’re at the Buckhead Theatre. Pretty wacky…

Patrick Hill has left his position as the primary talent buyer at the EARL to join the team at The Bowery Presents South, booking acts at various Southeastern venues (including, naturally, the EARL). Meanwhile at the EARL, Damon Hare will move up in the ranks, becoming head booking agent for the durable East Atlanta club. Big congratulations to both Patrick and Damon on their new positions!

T.I. is scheduled to do something or other on Jimmy Kimmel Live tonight, Monday, Oct. 13th... Florida Georgia Line inflicts more bro country on the gullible masses tonight on Late Night with Seth Meyers... 

Atlanta band 100 Watt Horse, who sorta sound like if Simon talked Garfunkel into making Graceland in 1969, do their thing on Live in the Lobby this Tuesday, Oct. 14th. Athens band Wieuca, who sorta sound like if Phineas talked Ferb into making a vat of peyote soup in 2069, will do the same show on Thursday, Oct. 16th. Airing most Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8 p.m. on WUOG, 90.5 FM in Athens, Live in the Lobby features local bands playing hour-long sets in the station’s campus facilities.

Photo of Kate 'n' Danny by Tom Roche.
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