Macklemore by the tale
After giving away three smaller furry prizes to random kids at the State Fair, Jesse Yungner said he kept “the biggest damn stuffed animal on the midway” with the idea of throwing it on stage during Saturday’s Macklemore & Ryan Lewis concert at the grandstand. Macklemore, however, beat him to the punch. And so begins the saga of a giant white stuffed creature now named CrowdSurf the Tiger, won for about $5 — by standing up a beer bottle with a fishing pole — and named after the chant that the rapper started after asking for the animal. “Don’t steal that [thing], give it back to the owner,” he told the 16,000 fans, before pretending to walk off stage to steal it for himself. Instead, he used it as a dancing partner. “When he danced and rode it during ‘Thrift Shop,’ we thought we had died and gone to heaven,’” said Yungner, 34, of Roseville, who planned to start a Facebook page and maybe an eBay charity auction for CrowdSurf. Might we suggest the tiger get its own agent first?
Miss Brotherly Love
Is Miss Richfield 1981, the alter-ego of Twin Cities entertainer Russ King, on the path to a new career as a travel and tourism spokesperson? A few years ago, she did commercials for Orbitz Gay Travel. Now, she has been tapped for a campaign for the City of Brotherly Love, a place where she has been performing for at least five years. In the ad, Miss Richfield visits Philadelphia’s famous landmarks, including the Liberty Bell, and snaps phone pics of herself. “It’s really quite a thrill,” said King from a beach in Cape Cod Bay. “In fact, I think that in my next life I’m going to come back as an amoeba, because I’m having so much fun.”
ETA on P.O.S.’ kidney
His high-energy performance at last week’s MN Music-on-Stick concert at the State Fair proved he’s getting by a lot better with dialysis nowadays, but P.O.S. still needs a kidney transplant. After a year of waiting, he finally has a matching donor. “It’s a guy I went to high school with, snowboarded with, that sort of thing — not a super-close friend before this, just a really, really great guy,” he said of his newfound savior, who called him up once he read our report a few months ago mentioning what blood-type was needed (his name is private for now). The operation will take place in a few months. “We both have pretty full schedules, so it will probably be early next year.” That’s right: Even a new kidney will have to wait on December’s big Doomtree Blowout shows featuring P.O.S. and his crew.
Lonely at the top
Staring out at the 15,000 people at sold-out Xcel Energy Center on Wednesday, Mumford & Sons bassist Ted Dwane asked: “Where were you when we played the 400 Club to 12 people in 2008?” That was the British folk-rock quartet’s Twin Cities debut. “You call yourself fans? We were so lonely.” OK, he was joking. Then the Mumfords asked how many fans saw them at the Varsity Theater and First Avenue — their other Minneapolis gigs. Ah, the good ol’ days.
Weight loss wakeup
Like many artists, local gospel/pop star Robert Robinson has launched a Kickstarter campaign to help finance his new album, “Lullabies From the Heart,” due Oct. 8. But he also needed a kickstart from his therapist to get the project off the ground. Robinson suffered a “slight stroke” in November at the end of a performance at the Fargodome in Fargo.“I lost feeling in the left side of my body. And I fell,” he recalled. He dismissed it as exhaustion but after several falls at home and four consecutive days of calling 911, Robinson went to the ER and was diagnosed with a stroke. “I need to focus on my body, on working on weight loss — that’s not a secret,” he said. He’s been working with a physical therapist on exercise and diet. Robinson has dropped 48 pounds, with more to go. He’s having trouble walking so he uses a walker or a wheelchair. But he’s still performing, with a CD release party set for Oct. 11 at the Dakota Jazz Club. “I’ve got to find some up-tempo songs,” he told I.W. “I don’t want to lullaby everybody to sleep.”
McQueen to Walker
British film director Steve McQueen, whose limited but impressive body of work shows him to be a master at making us simultaneously fascinated and uncomfortable, will be Walker Art Center’s retrospective and dialogue subject this fall. The first of three films shown will be “12 Years a Slave,” his highest-profile release, receiving its regional premiere Oct. 30. McQueen’s sexual-addiction drama “Shame” (2011) screens on Nov. 6, and “Hunger” (2009), the true story of an inmates’ hunger strike in a Northern Ireland prison, on Nov. 8. He speaks Nov. 9 at the Walker. Tickets go on sale Sept. 17.
Before a gig at the State Fair grandstand in 1985, Beej Chaney and Hugo Klaers of the Suburbs took a spin around the race track there in the Chaney family Saab. “We went one lap around the racetrack at like 80 miles per hour and it was as frightening as can be,” recalled shotgun rider Klaers. A grandstand official scolded them, saying the car’s wheels weren’t calibrated for the track’s banked turns. “The guy told us that our tires were that close to blowing up and we would have spun out of control,” Klaers told I.W. So when the ‘Burbs returned to the grandstand on Friday, Chaney simply rode backstage in the band’s 1947 Greyhound bus, driven by manager Jeff Buswell.