"It ain't the cover, but it ain't bad." So says Kevin Bowe on his nice little boost last week from RollingStone.com, which selected his Paul Westerberg-assisted song "Everybody Lies" as its Daily Download. The veteran Minneapolis bandleader for Alison Scott and his own Okemah Prophets -- who toured as Westerberg's guitarist in 2006 and has written for the likes of Jonny Lang and Etta James -- told the magazine how he and the ex-Replacements frontman have traded music equipment and recordings in their southwest Minneapolis neighborhood in recent years, which led to Westerberg writing the bridge for the song. "I left a recording of it on his doorstep," he tells Rolling Stone, "and only a couple of days later, it boomeranged back to me with this very Westerbergian circle-of-fifths bridge thing, plus some other ideas to 'handsome up' the song, as he put it." Meanwhile, Bowe was upstaged by Westerberg himself when Rolling Stone broke the news Wednesday of a new four-song Replacements EP of cover songs that will benefit guitarist Slim Dunlap, who had a stroke this year. At least, Bowe got to play guitar on the new Replacements session.
CHRIS RIEMENSCHNEIDERField trip for grown-ups
Those people wandering around Northeast Saturday afternoon wearing T-shirts that read "Field Trip" weren't refugees from a tourist bus. They were beta testers for a new Android app that Google tried out in five markets, including the Twin Cities. With Dusty's Bar serving as base camp, the 250 or so participants who downloaded the app walked, biked or drove to a couple dozen points of interest around the 'hood, including artists' studios and the seldom-opened old Hollywood Theater. On I.W.'s device, the gravelly-voiced guide sounded more like Bart Simpson's aunts than serene Siri, but it was a fun tool for autonomous exploration -- and for eventual advertisers to reach people walking right past their doors. Future events in other neighborhoods may be in the works, said Kate Iverson of Permanent Art & Design Group, which developed the local content, but the ever-expanding app for Northeast can be used any time. To download, go to www.fieldtripper.com.
KRISTIN TILLOTSONWebisode with a bull's-eye
In a masterful blend of serial webisodes and product placement, Target has trotted out some boldface names (B and C list, but still) for a budding office romance you can watch online while simultaneously clicking on products they are wearing/ using/ walking past. Kristen Bell ("Forgetting Sarah Marshall"), Zachary Abel (ABC Family's "Make It or Break It" ) and Nia Long ("Big Momma's House") star, with pencil skirts by Mossimo and pants by Merona sharing the marquee at fallingforyou.target.com. In three minutes, you see 50 products. C'mon Target, step it up.
KRISTIN TILLOTSONFamily affair
For a start-up operation, Gallery 1639 at Larpenteur and Snelling in St. Paul drew a notable A-list of artists for its invitation-only debut last Friday. The reason was the featured talents: fiber artist Nancy MacKenzie and her potter husband, Warren. Curated by their painter son-in-law, Kraig Rasmussen, the show pairs Nancy's graceful twig-paper-thread wall abstractions with Warren's earthy bowls, platters and other useful wares (on display through Nov. 10). Former Northern Clay Center director Emily Galusha introduced the MacKenzies, who chatted about their work and greeted the 200-plus guests, including metalsmith Tim Lloyd, photographer Stuart Klipper and artist Joyce Lyon. Usually rumpled sculptor Mike Norman even got the cellphone-paparazzi treatment when he dropped by en route to his daughter's wedding reception. "People were taking pictures of him because he was wearing a very nice Calvin Klein suit and a lovely tie made from antique kimono fabric," Galusha told I.W.
MARY ABBEHe taketh, he giveth away
You might think Boyd Huppert's mantel would be overrun with awards, especially after this past weekend when the KARE ace reporter picked up about nine regional Emmys (more than 100 were given out), bringing his grand total to 64. But Huppert's bookshelf at home displays only his national Emmy. He's given the rest away, primarily to loved ones, schools and, most frequently, the subjects of his award-winning pieces. "At first I was a little embarrassed because I wondered if anyone would want them, but people seem happy to have them," Huppert said. "It makes me feel good to know someone is enjoying them."
NEAL JUSTINMixing with giants
Fans of Bradstreet Craftshouse have been mourning the departure of Jourdan Gomez, a top Minneapolis bartender who ran off to New York City last month. On a recent trip to Manhattan, I.W. paid a visit to the cocktail maker at his new home, the much-touted Pouring Ribbons in the East Village. It was a pleasure to see him pouring drinks with some of the country's best -- the much ballyhooed Troy Sidle, Toby Maloney and Joaquin Simo, who was recently named American Bartender of the Year at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans. Each had nothing but good things to say about our guy. Gomez was super ecstatic to be on the team: "It's like working with the Avengers, sans Samuel L. Jackson."