— ADVERTISEMENT —
Friday, March 4, 2005
This month, Hawaii becomes the 43rd community worldwide to host its own Ladyfest.
The arts celebration and female empowerment event is part of a global grassroots movement motivating artists to create exhibitions and showcases outside traditional gallery and theatrical venues.
The inaugural Ladyfest Hawai'i 2005 will fill downtown venues and the University of Hawaii-Manoa campus. And among those who will display their art, dance, spin records or make music, there are two acts to look out for.
One is a music-making couple, and the other a San Francisco band that consistently pushes the boundaries of rock music.
WHAT'S IN A NAME? For Jon Moritsugu and Amy Davis, not much, considering they had to change their act's name for Ladyfest Hawai'i when, during a late-night Google search, they discovered that The Believers was already registered by another band. For now, call them Tiny Believers.
Moritsugu -- who made his name creating underground films in New York and San Francisco -- is a big, conceptual thinker, and didn't think the new name did justice to his and Amy's freewheeling mix of "scuzz punk and bliss pop." Davis, however, reflecting on how much their life has changed in the year since moving from the Bay Area to Jon's island home, thought it was perfect.
As they move into their 40s, their on-stage look has "evolved" from what Davis calls "messy hair and lots of glitter to all white, not in an Usher way, but sort of nerdy Lacoste."
Armed with her "buttery cream bass," this in-demand fashion illustrator who's finishing a nine-year run doing a cartoony style column for Paper, a New York magazine for the "hipoisie," has appeared in several of her husband's movies, and will talk about "That Biz We Call Art" Sunday afternoon at the Richards Street YWCA.
"Jon (a reluctant-to-reveal Punahou grad) grew up here, and the first time I visited and saw the ocean at Waimanalo beach, I was so moved. It's so cool here, you can feel the vibe. So even though we've left friends back on the mainland, life is short, and we love it here," Davis said.
The two met as seeming opposites -- she, a 17-year-old goth with Louise Brooks-style hair, and he, 21, all punked out with orange hair -- in college in Providence, R.I. Davis's flair for the dramatic made her a natural for Moritsugu's cinematic guerilla assaults on pop culture, and she admits to having used her talent to flirt with the bemused guy behind the lens.
Moritsugu plans to work on a new feature here soon, albeit one not as curse-laden as his earlier efforts.
In the meantime, the Tiny Believers carry on. "And our music is super cheesy," Davis says with pride. "Don't come if you're lactose intolerant!"
Deerhoof -- also featuring founders guitarist Rob Fisk, drummer/keyboardist Greg Saunier, and new guitarist Chris Cohen -- began receiving critical and fan support with 2003's "Apple O'" and last year's concept album, "Milk Man."
The band's fearless and playful chemistry also is reflected in an e-mail interview with Cohen.
On whether he helped solidify Deerhoof's sound since joining the band, he blithely replies, "I'm glad someone finally noticed the connection. My psychic control over the band has invisibly allowed me to get to the point where I can control the very thoughts of the other members."
Seriously, "We made the decision to go full time after I joined," he said. "That, coupled with my own patented synthetic formula, administered in a simple glass of water, has actually caused the band to spontaneously generate musical ideas."
The diminutive Matsuzaki, Cohen said, "is a very powerful person. She gets mad if we play too loud behind her, which we continually do without us realizing it. She's like a lion tamer, and we're impossible to fully repress. You get that feeling with certain bands. I find it very inspiring."
As to what the Ladyfest goers can expect from the noise pop band, Cohen boldly promises, "There'll be no tricks, just good clean fun! The laser machine and crowd-control gas pellets are only if John breaks a string."
BACK TO TOP
© Honolulu Star-Bulletin -- http://archives.starbulletin.com
— ADVERTISEMENT —
— ADVERTISEMENTS —
— ADVERTISEMENTS —