The Warnors Center for the Performing Arts — which includes the historic Warnors Theatre and the accompanying venues and commercial spaces on Fulton street — is a beacon for a revitalized Cultural Arts District in downtown.
The nonprofit foundation that oversees the complex wants to keep it that way.
“Improvements to, and restoration of, the venues are desperately needed to keep up with increased growth and development downtown,” says Sally Caglia, who sits on the board of directors for the nonprofit.
Her family once owned the theater.
“It is imperative the Warnors Board does its due diligence to make that happen, and for Warnors to remain an active historic centerpiece for downtown,” she says.
Earlier this month, the board brought in a new manager for the complex to help create strategic, fiscal scrutiny of its operations, Caglia says.
The casual observer probably hasn’t noticed. Any changes so far seem to be behind-the-scenes.
“At the moment nothing has really changed, ” says Gene Day, who now serves as the Warnors Complex Manager. “We have all the same kinds of events that have been there for the last couple of years,” he says.
As you’re out and about this weekend, seeing one of the dozens of local, live music performances (presented here in our weekly BANDGEEK post), remember Fresno cabbies want your business (for their own, it seems). It’s nice to feel wanted, right?
The “Fifty Shades of Grey” trailer was released this morning. So other than that quick 2 1/2 minutes, you’ll be free to enjoy the dozens of live music events through next week. I give them to you here in list form as a weekly roundup known as BANDGEEEEK!
Marina V has built a career out of fan funding. Everything, from her albums to many of her performances, has been paid for, money up front, by her fans. Any time someone asks if she’s planning a trip to their neck of the woods, she explains, very honestly, the situation. “We need to make money to pay the bills,” says Marina, who plays tonight at Frank’s Place with singer (and good friend) Astrid Plane of the ’80s band Animotion.
Most often things kind of work themselves out from there, she says.
Marina has traveled to France and Portugal, even the Czech Republic for these fan-funded shows. The Russian-born singer even found a way to subsidize her current tour — it’s being sponsored by Toyota Santa Monica. She’ll be travelling with her partner/husband in their Toyota Prius (its what they’ve always done), so the sponsorship just seemed logical.
“They sell the most Priuses in the United States,” Marina says. They pair installed a Toyota of Santa Monica license plate holder on their car, just so people know.
You could spend the weekend at home listening to DEVO on the old record player. Or, you could catch some live music at one of the dozens of events happening this week. Check it out in an all-new installment of our weekly roundup BANDGEEEEK!
Marina V was crowding-funding albums before Kickstarter was a thing, before Indie Go-Go, PledgeMusic or the rest. In fact, all four albums from the Russian-born songstress have been funded by fans, who, on average give $150 dollars or so.
Though, one fan — an adoring one no doubt — pledged $10,000 to the cause.
For the support, fans get a small token from the singer. Pledge anything and you may get a Soviet penny (1 kopeck). Pledge $500 and you get a signed lyric sheet or an original painting — Marina also paints.
More than the small gifts, the fans get the knowledge that they helped make the album happen.
“It’s an absolute win-win,” says Marina, who is in town Friday night supporting her latest album “Inner Superhero.”
It’s not that Marina is against having a record deal. It would just have to be the right one. And she’s not sitting and waiting for it to fall in her lap. “I’ve been doing it on my own with the support of my fans,” she says.
She’s done well.
She has performed everywhere from Hollywood’s Kodak Theatre, to the American Embassy in Moscow. She’s done club shows in Paris and Sydney. She’s worked with producer Jack Douglas (who worked with John Lennon, Aerosmith) and recorded at the home studio of Graham Nash.
As a side job of shorts, Marina writes music for day-time television, specifically the long-running “Day of Our Lives.” She works closely with the show’s composer and collaborates with her husband Nick. She writes the melody and he writes the lyrics. It’s a nice change from her normal writing process, she says. She’s given a specific topic and has to keep within a certain time length.
“It’s kind of like an assignment.”
Some may remember Marina’s name.
Though it’s been three years since she’s played in town, she used to play regularly at venues like Fagan’s pub. One her best friends, Astrid Plane (from the band Animotion) lives in the city.
“Fresno is very special to me,” Marina says.
Marina V plays 8 p.m. Friday at Frank’s Place. Local singer Evelyn Shu opens. Tickets are $10 in advance, $15, day of.
Watch the official video for Marina’s song “Speak.”
Donald filled you in on ArtHop for tonight, but here’s something else I wanted to draw peoples’ attention to: The new and improved block of businesses near the Warnors Theatre and the happenings they’re bringing with them.
ORLA FALLON: If you remember the group Celtic Woman, then you probably remember Fallon. She was a vocalist with the Irish group — popular with the PBS crowd — but since has branched off into a solo career and has had her own PBS special. Catch her tonight at Tower Theatre. [More info]
1. GET FOXY
The boys from Shiver Fox are having their big CD release bash Saturday night at Tower Theatre. If you like vintage rock with a raucous twist, you’ll like these guys. They’re definitely a local band on the movie, so check ‘em out. Read more in today’s music roundup.
The all-female trio (made up of sisters Nina and Phanie Diaz and their friend Jenn Alva) has a few claims to fame — they were cherry picked by Joan Jett for her Blackheart Records label, and have toured extensively with Morrissey. That’s especially cool since the band’s name is inspired by one of his songs.
I think I had one of the best weekends of the summer, and it was mostly in downtown Fresno. The Central California Invitational Rib Cook-off was a big success in numbers — drawing 10,000. I had a good time out there grubbin’. Sure, the food was a little pricey and the waits were a little long. But I suppose that beats the alternative of nobody being there. I hope it comes back next year bigger and better.
Here’s a video I put together from my rib journey on Saturday. Anybody try anything that was really yummy and care to share? Also: Anybody heard who won?
To make this whole thing even sweeter — one lucky Beehive reader will get in FREE. Yep, a sweet night of soul music and no cash out of your pocket. You can double thank promoter Love the Captive, who is bringing Hawthorne to town and giving up the free tix.
Of course you want to enter, so just leave a comment below and tell us your favorite soul song of all time. Easy enough, right? Deadline to enter is 4 p.m. Friday. We’ll pick one winner at random and notify that person be e-mail, so leave a real one and check it. No repeat comments please. You’re ineligible if you’ve won something in the past 30 days.
Complete rules — and one of my favorite Hawthorne jams — are on the jump.
If all of that is too seedy for ya, then Northpointe Community Church has the uplifting Christian rock sounds of the David Crowder* Band. (No, we don’t know what’s up with the asterisk either). The band was last in Fresno to play the Rock and Worship Roadshow at Save Mart Center.
UPDATE: Our winner is Cyndi. Congrats! Thanks for playing everyone.
ORIGINAL POST: Wednesday night, Frank’s Place hosts folk singer/songwriter William Fitzsimmons. It’s not going to one of those nights of indie music where the sweaty kids are dancing and jumping around.
No, it’ll be a little more mellow. Fitzsimmons is one of those performers who demands your attention — maybe it’s because of his jumps-right-at-you beard, or his hauntingly evocative songs.
Tickets to see him cost $15 … or, you can win a pair here courtesy of show promoter Love the Captive. Just comment below to enter yourself into our random drawing.
Deadline to enter is 10 a.m. Wednesday. Winners will be notified by e-mail, so leave a real one and check it. No repeat comments. You’re ineligible if you’ve won something in the past 30 days. Rules are on the jump.
How cool is Avi Buffalo? Cool enough to be playing upcoming concerts with My Morning Jacket, Wilco and Sonic Youth. Cool enough to get signed by uber-cool indie label Sub Pop Records.
Not bad for a band fronted by a just-out-of-high-school kid from Long Beach.
Avi Buffalo (named for frontman/kid Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg) makes its Fresno debut tonight, playing at Frank’s Place with the ever-buzzed about local band Fierce Creatures starting things off. (Avi Buffalo played Visalia last year, you might recall).
It sounds like things got UGLY Saturday night at Frank’s Place, where Faster Pussycat and L.A. Guns were supposed to take the stage. Numerous people are telling us the show’s promoter — IQ Promotions — ran off with the door money and the headlining bands then refused to play because they hadn’t been paid.
You might have already seen the upset comments coming into The Beehive. I’ve gotten a good number of phone calls and e-mails in addition to those. From all of it, I’ve been able to piece together this rundown of the events:
About 150 people (at $20 per ticket) were at the show. It started fine, and the local bands performed as scheduled. Before the headliners went on, IQ’s Heather Porter, who had been working the door, left with the money. John Corabi, the first of the headliners, played his set. As the next bands were setting up, they came out and said they weren’t going to be playing. In addition, I’m told that neither sound nor security got paid — and somebody even left with the headlining bands’ merchandise money.
I tried to reach out to Porter for her side of the story. I called her phone numerous times, but it goes directly to a voicemail that says it isn’t receiving messages. I sent her an e-mail that she hasn’t responded to in 24 hours. The MySpace page used by IQ Promotions has been deleted. And there’s a Craigslist ad by Porter’s husband’s former band looking for a replacement and saying they were “totally screwed” too.
When you’re not hiding from that looming 106-degree heat …
1. GO GLOBAL Ana Tijoux enters Fresno this weekend with a good amount of buzz. She had the single of the week on iTunes this week for her “1977.” She’s a female rapper from South America who has been performing in big cities all over the country — and she’s in Fresno on Sunday, playing at Frank’s Place. Yay us.