Blog Archives

August 8 – 14, 2012

1982 MUSICAL SAW FESTIVAL. One of the first Musical Saw Festivals. This was in the now shuttered Veterans Hall. Hidden in the photo are Tom Scribner, Faith Petric, Morgan Cowin, David Weiss (from the LA Philharmonic, in a tux!!) That’s Arlene Sutton at the piano and Herman Olson in the derby and vest plus many whose names I’ve forgotten. Yes, that’s me on the farthest right, leading the ensemble.

photo credit: Bruce Bratton’s personal photo collection.

Additional information always welcome: email

WORLD’S BEST MUSICAL SAW PLAYER. Check out the Youtube clip to the right to watch and listen to Moses Josiah playing in a NYC Subway. He used to come to Santa Cruz’s early Saw Festivals. So did Rene Bogart, Humphrey’s cousin. Rene would tap dance too! Kate Wolf and Faith Petric played here a few times at the Festivals and so did an incredible Mr. Binks who played Venetian blinds and a vacuum cleaner!!

“PROGRESSIVE” POLITICS IN SANTA CRUZ. The distance between left wing Democrats and developing democrats has been widening for years in Santa Cruz. AND it’s happening all across the United States. Here’s a recent Chronicle piece that tells how it’s working up there. Becky O’Malley has told me and has written in her Berkeley Daily Planet that it’s the same in Berkeley. We see it here in the way some democrats support what they call “economic development” and say to hell with the environment. That’s folks like Cynthia Mathews, Mike Rotkin, Ryan Coonerty, and all their sycophants. To see who the new sycophants are, read the endorsement lists for the latest City Council candidates. What folks don’t seem to realize is that it isn’t a matter of being “more progressive” than thou, it’s taking stands on issues and growth that are as separate as any Republican and Democrat issues. Supporting sustainability, environment, and a way of life over growth is the biggest separation. Part of this is realizing how often locals and desperate business owners believe that the only way for their businesses to succeed is to bring in more residents. Look at the latest City Council candidate’s flyers and statements. There are absolutely no statements about sustainability, environment, or quality and maintaining Santa Cruz’s uniqueness that mean anything. And you won’t hear any words on those topics at the many forums that are being staged either. Ask candidates about growth, about that criminal basketball arena, or would they turn down a new Wal-Mart? Ask them.

ELERICK’S INPUT. Paul’s riled up…read why here…
The Desalination Issue outside of Santa Cruz

The biggest issue coming up in November (and later) will be whether or not people will agree to tax themselves to pay for desalination of ocean water. We’ve already seen this with the success that the Right to Vote on Desal Coalition had in the city of Santa Cruz. They collected enough signatures to do just that; give Santa Cruz residents their right to vote on this. There’s been enough smoke blown around by Desal supporters with their fishy proposal to supposedly do the same thing; it didn’t. Stay tuned for the city council candidate forums to hear more!

Sooner or later, the rest of water users serviced by Soquel Creek Water District, the other Desal partner in with Santa Cruz, plus those Live Oak residents not in the City will (and should) get a chance to vote on this. Sad to say, not much publicity has been generated in local media about what this means to them. Our SCWD newsletter that comes with our water bills has carried stories about what Desal means to their customers. But, how many people sort the newsletter out from their water bills and read it? I’ve been told that an alternative exists to Desal for SCWD customers. It isn’t pretty – a 40% cutback on water usage during drought years. The cost of Desal for mid-county SCWD customers is just as bad an option, in dollars and future growth inducement. I for one would be willing to take my chances with the 40% reduction, not watering lawns, getting my car washed with recycled water, taking shorter showers, etc. How about the rest of you? (Paul Elerick is co-chair, along with Peter Scott, of the Campaign for Sensible Transportation, , and is a member of Nisene 2 Sea, a group of open space advocates).

PATTON’S PROGRAM. Gary discusses Gov. Brown versus the environment. Hot Tubs on the cliffs. A big new hotel in Pacific Grove. “Vested rights” and our Board of Supes about to deal with Barry Swenson’s development of Aptos Village. It’s all here

(Gary Patton is “Of Counsel” to the Santa Cruz law firm of Wittwer & Parkin, which specializes in land use and environmental law. The opinions expressed are Mr. Patton’s. Gary has his own website, “Two Worlds / 365”

LINUS PAULING PEACE PRIZE ART. The Linus Pauling Peace Prize Awards Auction has issued a call to all artists to submit their work by August 31 to compete for the prestigious award that also gives a modest $300 first prize and $100 second prize in two categories: original and graphic art. The jury will consist of three gallery notables: Susan Leask of MAH, Angelo Grova of Michaelangelo Gallery and Robbie Schoen of Felix Kulpa Gallery.

The auction will be held on September 15, 2012 at the home of Linda Arnold and Ned Hearn, 2150 Sunnyacres Dr. Santa Cruz. Fred Keeley will be the auctioneer. Past winners of the Award in 2007 are Manny Santana, Sefla Joseph, and Anna Oneglia, In the seventies the awards were given to Robert Rauschenberg, Claes Oldenburg and Ed Ruscha. Art Committee chair, Sheila Halligan-Waltz asks all artists to bring their donated work to the United Nations Association/UNICEF store at 903 Pacific Ave. Open from 11 to 5 daily. The auction is a benefit for UNICEF. For more information call Sheila 688-6651 or Pat Arnold at 425-7618.

I spent this last weekend shooting my submission to the Antarctic Film Festival, an international contest between the stations scattered across the continent. Although the festival has an unrestricted “Open” category, most people choose to enter the 48-Hour contest that people might know from contests back in the States. Someone on ice chooses five elements (two props, a character, a line of dialogue, a sound effect) and crews then have 48 hours to make a short film featuring the elements.

Our 60-second video may not win the prize, but we had a great time making it. I’ll post it after judging ends and the winners are announced. In the meantime, here’s a short excerpt from another film project I’m making with friends off-Ice. The piano music (“Illusion” by Tigran Hamasyan) is a little much, I know… still, I hope you enjoy a time lapse of one day (approximately six hours) in late July looking out over the harbor.

(Micaela Neus works for Raytheon Polar Services Company as a utilities technician and is currently living at Palmer Station, Antarctica until at least October 2012.

VINTAGE De CINZO. Coffee House secrets…scroll lower.

ANTARCTIC HARBOR IN JULY. This is Micaela’s 60 second video.

EAGANS DEEP COVER. Tim takes on the real Republican War…see more below.

LANDAU’S PROGRES. Saul writes, “Violence Defines American Culture” and says

“Violence defines American culture. Turn on kids’ cartoons or any “drama” show and we see and hear the images and sounds of aggression against others. U.S. foreign policy advocates violence as the solution to problems. Bomb Kosovo, Libya. Invade Iraq or now Syria. Bomb Iran. Hollywood films, professional football and hockey, video games all squeeze the display of violence to attract audiences to their primary medium of entrainment. Brutal masculine domination has become the aesthetic in American “entertainment.” The media sells violence just as the language of violence shapes political discourse. In Hollywood barely a film heads for theaters without the fight and sound of a fist hitting a face, a bullet ripping through a body or a car pushing another car off the road. Our ever-growing prison system, with its industrial cousins, parallels the militarization of local police forces. The President heads the “assassination abroad committee” deciding on which people get “droned” today”. Read the rest of it here

Saul Landau is an Institute for Policy Studies fellow whose films are on DVD from

Micaela Neus sent this William Shatner clip on mountain climbing.

You think you’ve heard “weird” before??? Check out Shatner

LISA JENSEN LINKS. Lisa writes,” This week at Lisa Jensen Online Express (, smart and savvy Ruby Sparks examines the Pygmalion aspect of the creative process. And there’s still time to pick up a few useful, late-summer travel tips from The Inconstant Traveler!” Lisa Jensen has been writing film reviews and columns for Good Times since 1975.

RUBY SPARKS. That’s two for two for directors Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton…who also created Little Miss Sunshine. NOTE….Valerie’s folks Jim and Paula Faris live in Santa Cruz. Zoe Kazan not only stars in it, but wrote the script. Mythical and dream like even cute the film sneaks up on you and you leave thinking about one more view of life. Go see it, you’ll love it.

FAREWELL MY QUEEN. The Bastille, The French Revolution, Versailles, treachery, court intrigue, gowns, peasants and of course the star Marie Antoinette are more than enough to get you semesters of credits in French history just for the sitting. But it’s a fine film, no recognizable world class stars, but go see it and yes, on the big screen. The director Jacque Benoit also directed Sade and Tosca, so he knows what he’s doing.

TOTAL RECALL. At least ex Guvnor Schwarzenegger is NOT in this film. He’s making more movies right now we hear but you’re safe with this re-make of his earlier effort. Colin Farrell does as well as he can with a plot that honestly keeps you involved almost all the way through the movie. The effects especially of the future city look a lot like Blade Runner’s future Los Angeles and are wonderful. It’s just that there’s just too many stunts, too much chase and violence. All in all it’s near the top of this kind of film.

HOSTETTER’S HOT STUFF. Paul Hostetter and I caught up on our calendars, check these dates and gigs out especially the one with The Cheap Suit Serenaders…he says,”

A few things:

1) There’s a house concert coming up soon in my neighborhood, featuring Cape Breton fiddler Andrea Beaton with William Coulter & Aria Di Salvio. It’s presented by the Celtic Society of the Monterey Bay, on Friday, August 10th at 7:30pm. There’s a suggested donation of $17 or $15 to Celtic Society members. (All proceeds go to the performers.) To attend, contact the hosts, Geoff and Patria Brown at (831) 247-1365 or For more, visit

2) Our favorite local restaurateur, Paul Cocking, has been hosting a series of literary salons at his Gabriella Café that are close enough to the spirit of my list that I’d like to point you that way. Great food, great conversation, great setting for all the above. I hesitated about simply handing him my whole local list with asking first, so instead I recommend you drop an email to and get on their mailing list and stay abreast. Local everything: food sources, art on the walls, and intelligent conversation, check it out, please.

3) And coming up in this general area: a bunch of live music! Read all about it here, and be sure and check back, because I always remember someone or something I’ve forgotten a day or two after I’ve sent these notices, and I don’t like dropping too much email in your inbox. Cheers, ph.

MUSICAL SAW FESTIVAL.(a repeat) 34TH ANNUAL MUSICAL SAW FESTIVAL. There’ll be guests from Japan this year and from around Europe, but none from Beijing, where there’s a Musical Saw School with 200 students. The press release reads… “For great music that’s a cut above the rest, come to the 34th Annual International Musical Saw Festival, Saturday and Sunday, August 11 and 12th . The Festival starts at 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11th with a free acoustic jam near the world’s only life-sized bronze statue of a saw player Mr. Tom Scribner, in front of Bookshop Santa Cruz (1520 Pacific Avenue). At 6 p.m. Saturday, the cutting-edge fun moves to the outer parking lot of Roaring Camp in Felton, just seven miles north of Santa Cruz, for a free potluck dinner and jam. The Festival’s big events begin at 10 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 12, at Roaring Camp, when the worlds greatest saw players join other acoustic musicians in a variety of musical performances. You’ll hear bluegrass, country, folk, gospel, blues, classical works and show tunes (though, oddly enough, no heavy metal) throughout the day. The forecast also includes outbreaks of spontaneous acoustic jams at any time.

The International Musical Saw Contest (the Saw-Off) is held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday. Later that afternoon, around 3 p.m., is the Presentation of Awards, followed by the Chorus of the Saws, when up to 50 saw players attempt to play in unison. At 4 p.m., for those who want to learn to play music that really has some teeth in it, there’s a free Musical Saw Workshop. From beginning to end, the Saw Festival is free, and fun for the whole family. For more information, check out, or Produced by volunteers of the International Musical Saw Association, this event is sponsored in part by the Cultural Council of Santa Cruz County and KUSP Public Radio. Come to the 34th annual Musical Saw Festival, and say you saw it here first!

UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE. Each and every Tuesday from 7:00-8:00 p.m. I host Universal Grapevine on KZSC 88.1 fm. or on your computer (live only, or sometimes old programs are archived…(see next paragraph) and go to WWW.KZSC.ORG. Denice Macy from The Land of The Medicine Buddha will tell us what’ happening “Up there in Soquel” on Aug. 7th. She’ll be followed by Joe Ferrara of Atlantis Fantasyworld divulging secrets of the comic-graphic universe. Audrey Stanley will bring Shakespeare Santa Cruz up to date on August 14. Then Becky O’Malley editor of The Berkeley Planet will help us compare cities and campii influences. KUSP’s poet Dennis Morton will discuss poetry on August 21st. Grapevine on Sept. 4th will have Joan Van Antwerp whowill tell news about the Van Antwerp Theatre Company’s next play. “Crooked” opening Sept. 19. Right after Joan, Jack Bowers and Sayaka Yabuki from New Music Works will share thoughts about their John Cage tributes. Julie James from The Jewel Theatre Company will talk about their new season on Sept.11. Later, on September 25 Scott Griffin, Nickelodeon chief operating manager will discuss films, digital releases and local movie tastes. Cathy Pickerrell from Santa Cruz Chamber Players will provide season news on October 2nd. Do remember, any and all suggestions for future programs are more than welcome so tune in, and keep listening. Email me always at

UNIVERSAL GRAPEVINE ARCHIVES. In case you missed some of the great people I’ve interviewed in the last 5 years here’s a chronological list of just this year’s podcasts. Click here then tap on “listen here” to hear any or all of them… all over again. The update includes Nikki Silva, Michael Warren, Tom Noddy, Anita Monga, Mark Wainer, Judy Johnson-Darrow, Wendy Mayer-Lochtefeld, Rachel Goodman, George Newell, Tubten Pende, Gina Marie Hayes, Rebecca Ronay-Hazleton, Miriam Ellis, Deb Mc Arthur, The Great Morgani on Street performing, Paul Whitworth on Krapps Last Tape. Jodi McGraw on Sandhills, Bruce Daniels on area water problems. Mike Pappas on the Olive Connection, Sandy Lydon on County History. Paul Johnston on political organizing, Rick Longinotti on De-Sal. Dan Haifley on Monterey Bay Sanctuary, Dan Harder on Santa Cruz City Museum. Sara Wilbourne on Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre. Brian Spencer on SEE Theatre Co. Paula Kenyon and Karen Massaro on MAH and Big Creek Pottery. Carolyn Burke on Edith Piaf. Peggy Dolgenos on Cruzio. Julie James on Jewel Theatre Conpany. Then there’s Pat Matejcek on environment, Nancy Abrams and Joel Primack on the Universe plus Nina Simon from MAH, Rob Slawinski, Gary Bascou, Judge Paul Burdick, John Brown Childs, Ellen Kimmel, Don Williams, Kinan Valdez, Ellen Murtha, John Leopold, Karen Kefauver, Chip Lord, Judy Bouley, Rob Sean Wilson, Ann Simonton, Lori Rivera, Sayaka Yabuki, Chris Kinney, Celia and Peter Scott, Chris Krohn, David Swanger, Chelsea Juarez…and that’s just since January 2011. Hear them all!!!


QUOTES. Scott Mac Clelland sent these. They are all from Gore Vidal.

“When anyone says to me, ‘Can you keep a secret?’ I say, ‘Why should I, if you can’t?”. “The United States was founded by the brightest people in the country – and we haven’t seen them since.” “A narcissist is someone better looking than you are.” “Never have children, only grandchildren.” “There is no human problem which could not be solved if people would simply do as I advise.” “Never pass up a chance to have sex or appear on television.” “There is something about a bureaucrat that does not like a poem.” “A writer must always tell the truth, unless he is a journalist.”


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Santa Cruz, CA 95060

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Deep Cover by tim eagan.

Posted in Weekly Articles | Comments Off on August 8 – 14, 2012