Legions of bowling Valkyries and castrating German nihilists are best found onscreen in The Dude's nightmares in the Coen brothers' cult classic The Big Lebowski and partying in bowling alleys at Lebowski Fest. The original Lebowski Fest was in Louisville in 2002, and the first New Orleans edition is Nov. 8-9.
On Friday at The Howlin' Wolf, there's music by The Dudes Abide, a Creedence Clearwater Revival and "Dude music" cover band made up of three past Best Dude costume-contest winners. The Catfish Orchestra also performs and there's a screening of The Big Lebowski.
On Saturday, there's a costume contest for individuals and groups, a trivia contest and unlimited bowling with admission at AMF All Star Lanes. (There's a large gallery of past costume contest competitors here.)
Lebowski Fest was founded by Will Russell and Scott Shuffitt. They used to moonlight selling T-shirts at conventions, and during down time, they'd quote from the movie's endless supply of memorable lines.
"At one convention in 2002, some guys we didn’t know next to us joined in and started quoting with us," Russell says. "We realized we were not alone. We were at this weird tattoo convention where these people were suspended by their ass piercings, and we were out of our element, but we were like: If they can have this weird tattoo and piercing convention, we should have a Big Lebowski convention."
Their first event was at a bowling alley in Louisville, and 150 people attended. The following year, 1,200 people went. In 2004, the festival featured its first band: My Morning Jacket.
"It was great," Russell says. "Jim James dressed as The Dude, the drummer, Patrick Hallahan was Walter, Tommy (Blankenship) was Jesus and Carl (Broemel) was a nihilist."
"This Club Is On Fire"
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This Saturday, October 26th, Red Bull will host its second ‘Red Bull Street Kings Battle of the Bands’ under the Claiborne Bridge in Treme between St. Anne and St. Phillips St. from 1-4pm. Hosted by Glen David Andrews, four brass bands will compete for the title of Street Kings by demonstrating their ability to incorporate traditional brass band standards with own original tunes. The event premiered in New Orleans in 2010 with The Stooges Brass Band winning the title after competing against The Free Agents, To Be Continued and the Soul Rebels. This year, To Be Continued is returning along with New Creations Brass Band, New Breed Brass Band and Original Pinettes Brass Band to compete for the title of Red Bull Street Kings and for a recording session under the guidance of Trombone Shorty at the Red Bull Studios in New York. A panel of musicians and local cultural icons including Kermit Ruffins and Trombone Shorty will serve as judges.
The Anba Dlo festival at the New Orleans Healing Center is this weekend. There's an afternoon symposium about water issues. A Halloween parade departs from Mimi's in the Marigny (Franklin and Royal streets) at 6 p.m. and winds its way to the Healing Center. The procession includes the Radical Faeries, 9th Ward Seminole Hunters, Pussyfooters, Cherry Bombs, Muff-a-lottas, Skin n' Bonz, Roux La La, BateBunda and Star Steppin' Cosmonaughties. Costumes are encouraged. There's a parade map here. The evening features music on two stages plus burlesque dancers and other performers. Visit the website for a schedule.
504forward, the collaborative effort of organizations across the city aimed at keeping young people in New Orleans, hosts its fifth birthday party Thursday at Tipitina's Uptown. The event promises to be huge, with live music and free drinks and food. It all goes down from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., and it's completely free, though you will need a ticket, which you can order here (504ward is hoping to limit the event to 1,000 people). Big Sam's Funky Nation will perform during the festivities.
In honor of its fifth year in action, 504ward recently launced Be Local NOLA, a set of monthly challenges that help people stick roots down in New Orleans soil. Every completed challenge comes with a prize. This month, getting a 504 area code will win you a crawfish boil, and registering to vote will get you a cocktail party. Visit Be Local NOLA's homepage for more info.
"Can't We All Get Along?"
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The show must go on: 2013 Ponderosa Stomp organizers announced that despite the approaching weather-doom, this weekend's festivities will go on as planned at Rock 'N' Bowl.
West Bank teenage psychedelic rock 'n' roll band The Gaunga Dyns will reunite Saturday, Oct. 5 at the Stomp. The Gaunga Dyns recorded two records on Busy B in the mid-1960s: "Rebecca Rodifer" and its B-side "Stick With Her," and "Clouds Don't Shine" with "No One Cares." In this week's Gambit, I talked to Gaunga Dyns guitarist Steve Staples — who performs in the Avon Suspects and runs International Vintage Guitars in Algiers.
The band's moody, twangy garage rock was released on legendary New Orleans label Minit Records' subsidiary, Busy B, and hit radio waves and rock 'n' roll clubs. As Staples says, "We were on fire."
The band dissolved by the late '60s. After the jump, read Gambit's interview with Staples — he talks about the mid-'60s psychedelic scene, performing at Maison Blanche, what happened to the original recordings, and getting the band back together.
Family Ties Parade with Jazzy Ladies
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 6, 2013 1-5 PM
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The team behind next weekend's free, outdoor food and music extravaganza saw a need for more diversity in the city and went about filling it.
"We saw that even as New Orleans makes progress, there's not much cross-polination across the community," says Cleveland Spears, owner of Spears Consulting Group, the group responsible for a host of events organized under the brand Social Renaissance. International Night, which comes to the Port of New Orleans Sat. Oct. 12 from 6 p.m. to midnight, is one of four events aimed at mixing up the social stratum in New Orleans. It follows "Dinner en Blanc" and the Millenial Awards, and precedes a New Year's Eve blowout.
The Social Aid and Pleasure Club parade schedule has FINALLY been released for the 2013-2014 year. YAAAAAY!!!!!!!
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God's speed, Rodrigue
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