Welcome to Artcetera. Arts-and-entertainment writers and critics post movie news, concert updates, people items, video, photos and more. Share your views. Check it daily. Remain in the know. Contributors: Mary Abbe, Aimee Blanchette, Jon Bream, Tim Campbell, Colin Covert, Laurie Hertzel, Tom Horgen, Neal Justin, Claude Peck, Rohan Preston, Chris Riemenschneider, Graydon Royce, Randy Salas and Kristin Tillotson.
Grade-school rappers Y.N. Rich Kids of “Hot Cheetos & Takis” fame could have another viral hit to their name, but there’s one problem: That’s not actually their name anymore.
A gritty slow-jam titled “My Bike” -- recorded by north Minneapolis’ littlest rap giants last summer alongside another insatiably cute video -- finally saw the light of day Friday afternoon and has already attracted 30,000 views in three days on YouTube. In the interim since the song was made, however, the group has changed its name to simply the KIDS following a dispute with the Northside YMCA over money issues.
Those issues are still unresolved, with the families of the youth rappers asking for some of the money made off of paid downloads and YouTube ad revenue. The money instead has gone to the Beats & Rhyme afterschool program that birthed the group, and to the director of the “Hot Cheetos” video. However, the good news is the KIDS’ families and the Beats & Rhymes organizers at least found common ground with “My Bike” (posted below).
“We all just wanted to finally get it out there,” said Melissa Mercedes, whose son Freeman “Frizzy Free” Hickman shines again along with his other cohorts in “My Bike” and its video. “This is the follow-up hit to ‘Hot Cheetos.’ We always knew this one was going to be hot, too, and the numbers we’re seeing already speak for themselves.”
As was the case in "Hot Cheetos," the rappers involved have no trouble speaking for themselves in "My Bike." Here's a sample of the song's smooth-flowing lyrics from Glenn "G6" Carter, age 12:
"It's G6, ridin' on my bike / Flyer than a kite, and I put that on my life / Matter fact put that on my mama / Flow cold but I'm hot like a sauna / No games, bro, I don't need no drama / Cuz I'm tryna make change like Obama."
So far, the song is only being offered as a free download, so there's no money to dispute, and the parents of the young rap stars are cool with it being issued as a Y.N.RichKids song. “That’s the name they were still using when they made it, so it’s fair,” Mercedes said. Another fun and infectious new video/single, “Khaki Pants,” was simultaneously issued under the Beats & Rhymes banner by another group in the program, the NSJ Crew, which features some of the KIDS and other students from the program’s partnering Nellie Stone Johnson Community School.
From here on out, though, look for the kids to be the KIDS. Their new management team is finishing off a demo with new songs to shop around to labels. They are keeping up appearances, too – the only way they have gotten paid!—including a short slot opening for Mindless Behavior at Epic last weekend. On Saturday, they will perform again at an open house event at the Institute of Production & Recording in downtown Minneapolis (where their demo was made; click here for more info). There’s talk of a short tour to the South over the summer. By then, they very well could be known as more than a one-hit wonder.
Actor Whoopi Goldberg (above) will be one of the headliners of the Guthrie's 50th anniversary gala, the Minneapolis theater announced Monday.
Goldberg, a co-host of "The View," has done stand-up engagements at the old Guthrie on Vineland Place. She did a five-night stand there in 1988 and a one-night gig in June 2001.
Golberg won an Oscar for her role in "Ghost." She also was a producer of the Tony-winning show "Thoroughly Modern Millie."
Golberg joins a roster of actors and entertainers that includes T.R. Knight ("Grey's Anatomy"), Patricia Kalember ("thirtysomething"), Tony nominee Tracie Bennett ("End of the Rainbow"), and the vocal group Cantus.
The gala, planned for June 22, wil be co-hosted by Greta Oglesby and Sally Wingert.
Call 612-225-6350 for more info.
Matthew McConaughey has demonstrated a jaw-dropping acting range in last few films, from a hot-dogging D.A in “Bernie” to an amoral hitman in “Killer Joe,” a good old boy into masochistic S&M in “The Paperboy” and a wigged-out strip club owner/star in “Magic Mike.” He’s shown himself capable of challenges no one would have imagined two years ago.
Perhaps it shouldn’t surprise, then, that he’ll star in the one of the biggest projects Hollywood has to offer, Christopher Nolan’s 2014 sci-fi epic “Interstellar.” McConaughey said the much-talked-about deal is done in a phone interview this morning from New Orleans, where he is currently filming the upcoming HBO crime series “True Detective” with Woody Harrelson.
Nolan’s projects are notoriously secretive, and McConaughey revealed no details other than to say “I’m confirming” that he had accepted the role.
There’s no other casting news about the project. The script, by Nolan’s brother and regular collaborator Jonathan, is said to involve “time travel and alternate dimensions and sees a group of explorers travel through a wormhole.” Sounds like a companion piece to Nolan’s mind-bending “Inception,” “Memento,” and “The Prestige.”
McConaughey’s shape-shifting post-romantic-comedy career continues with the soon-to-be-released “Mud,” where he plays a romantically obsessed drifter, and “The Dallas Buyers Club,” due out later this year. The film tells the true story of Ron Woodroof, a homophobic Texas electrician who was diagnosed with AIDS in 1986 and given six months to live before extending his lifespan through alternative treatments. McConaughey literally shape-shifted for that film, shedding 40 pounds to play the emaciated Woodruff.
Dave "Cool Breeze" Brown in 1999 (photo by Joey McLeister, Star Tribune)
By Tom Surowicz
There's a memorial gathering Saturday for Twin Cities jump blues master, Dave "Cool Breeze" Brown, longtime leader of the Senders, a truly great bar band. Despite the shock and sadness of his sudden passing from cardiac arrest at age 58, it should be a swingin' affair. Because Dave was a "Good Rockin' Daddy," a high-spirited bon-vivant, the life of so many parties.
An excellent guitarist, "Cool Breeze" was Mojo Buford's favorite Minnesota sideman. And Lynwood Slim's right-hand man. And Charmin Michelle's early duets partner. Dave loved honkin' sax-driven blues sounds of the 1940s and 1950s, the wilder and more risque the better, and his Senders delivered the goods.
They got to play live and record with one of the ultimate purveyors of jump blues art, Big Jay McNeely. In their heyday, Brown's band also supported Lowell Fulson, John Lee Hooker, and Johnny Adams, and recorded with Charles Brown, legends all. But "Cool Breeze" remained self-deprecating, often laughingly referring to his "Dean Martin-style crooning."
Omnipresent on the 1990s bar scene, Brown was less prominent, but still active in recent years, working with several groups, including some new Senders lineups and, most frequently, the Detroit Don King Blues Band. "Cool Breeze" blew no ill, and left behind thousands of smiles.
The service will be at noon Saturday at Lakewood Cemetery Memorial Chapel, 36th St. and Hennepin Ave. S., Minneapolis, followed by a celebration at the Artists' Quarter in St. Paul.
Gifts in his memory may be made to the Cool Breeze Memorial Fund, www.coolbreezememorial.com.
Stand by for outrage, people. Also lightening bolts from Heaven, assuming God the Father wields such things. Zeus was very good with a lightening bolt, but GTF, who knows?
In any case, Minneapolis performance artists Jason Wade and Jaime Carrera are about to test the proposition that God is Not Yet Dead. If He is still perking about, He is likely to be extremely peeved by their performance on Easter Sunday.
Wade, pictured here, has apparently drawn the star straw and will assume the role of First Son in this new performance piece designed, choreographed, and otherwise slapped together by Carrera. In it, Carrera "continues exploring his recent obsession with terribleness."
As the press release helpfully explained, "Cheesus shoves the traditional story of the passion through a wood chipper of pyschedelia & ridiculous blasphemy. Aided by the unnatural talents of shock rock celebrity & filmmaker, Jason Wade, this performance piece promises to be horrifyingly sacrilicious."
(7 p.m. Sunday, March 31, $5. Soolocal (next to Pat's Tap), 3506 Nicollet Av. S., Minneapolis. www.soovac.org)
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