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SXSW: Unofficial. Day 3

Despite another late night, I meet a friend for lunch ontime at 11:30 in the morning for more amazing tacos (and melon juice!). On the drive home, I listen to the convention’s official keynote address by Bruce Springsteen that is being broadcast on a local radio station.

Carl doesn’t work until 7 pm, so I drag him to see Girls at another free showcase. We park the car (for free this time!) on a side street and bike over to the same area as the previous night. The showcase is in an airplane hanger and it’s hotter than hell in the metal can. For the very first time, I’m thankful that the sets are only 45 minutes long during SouthBy. Showcases have 5 bands on average, and most venues host 2 showcases a day. With setup time and sound checking, musicians only have time for about 6-8 songs.

I’ve seen Girls before at FunFunFunFest in November, but I’m more familiar with their music now, and I’m relieved when they encore with my favorite song “Hellhole Ratrace.” The band sounds like a mix of Buddy Holly’s vocals, beach-y guitar tremolo and the self-deprecation of Weezer. One of the 3 ladies from the backing choir belts out an earth-moving solo and the signature flowers on the mic stand get thrown out into the crowd. We’re by the soundbooth watching our friend run sound, and I’m telling Carl about the lyrics, prompting him to pull out his journal. We hang around the venue, cooling off outside, more free stuff to be had. We try to make plans with the friend (a former Puebloan, incidentally) who is in town for one day only with the band , but he’s hard at work so we leave in search of dinner.

The food truck industry gets noticeably bigger every time I’m in Austin. Carl says there wasn’t a single one when he arrived 5 years ago, now there’s parking lots full of them. I look around the loop of trailers for something unusual on the menus, but the fish and chips and malt vinegar are calling my name. Carl has an hour before he has to report to the coffee shop, so we stop by the convention center for Flatstock, an exhibit of graphic artists, mostly featuring posters made for well-known touring bands. The exhibit has just shut down for the day so he heads into work early and I head south over the Congress Street bridge.

Auditorium Shores is a great outdoor venue that can hold thousands of people. It backs to Town Lake (newly renamed LadyBird Lake, but no one calls it that, only maps) and downtown Austin. The tall buildings provide a stunning backdrop to the stage in various lighting situations throughout the day. During SX, free concerts showcase popular notable acts, and tonight, The Shins are headlining. The locals talk about the year prior when the Strokes were playing and people were trampled when the gates were closed to more entrants. Luckily, the amount of people avoiding the venue makes for a mellower experience that night.

James Mercer and crew play plenty of old sing-along favorites: “Phantom Limb”, “Red Rabbits”, “Young Pimgrims”, “New Slang”, “Saint Simon” returning to the stage for an encore with just-released “Port of Morrow”, and closing out with the one I’m waiting for: “Sleeping Lessons”. My life feels complete at that moment.

The bike ride back downtown is frustrating and I’m mostly walking it through the crowds, until a line of jaywalkers shut down car traffic and I break on through (to the other side), and about 5 other cyclists follow me, one who is yelling to me, “WE OWN THE BRIDGE!” over and over. I make it back to home base sweaty and grinning for another shot of espresso. Glancing at the daily Chronicle’s event listings, I find a show nearby, another official showcase and walk over.

I arrive at Frank to a VERY long line that nearly scares me away, but it’s for next door where Jack Black’s Tenacious D is playing, and I walk right in to a nearly empty venue. I take a seat on the balcony and fall in love with yet another band. Southeast Engine sounds very slow, country and folky at first, but the pace picks up to upbeat, clean and bright melodies that remind me of Band of Horses, and local Americana band The Broken Spoke. “Preparing for the Flood” ends in epic fashion, with a driving piano and organ.

The next band in Misra Record’s (also home to Great Lake Swimmers, Destroyer and Shearwater) showcase is R. Ring. I’m not so into their sound, so I make friends with the girl sitting alone next to me. However, half of the two-piece on stage is power woman Kelley Deal of The Breeders, and that’s pretty cool. Even if I don’t like their style, it’s easy to see that they’re good at what they do, like everyone at SX. The final band is Seryn, who played 2 nights in Pueblo and 1 in Colorado Springs to rave reviews.

By the time they start their set, the venue is completely packed full of people, all there specifically to see Seryn. There’s 5 people on stage, and throughout the set, they each play several instuments, drums, violins, banjos, guitars, a xylophone, trumpet, and 4 part vocal harmonies. At one point, the members are using bows on all of the instruments. The easiest band comparison is to the Local Natives, and I’m completely blown away by the energy and emotion, just like I was when I saw the Local Natives open for Arcade Fire. Yet another total score for last minute ideas.

I walk back to the coffee shop in time for the 3 am closing time freak show. People are begging to be let in to use the bathroom or charge their phone, as Carl and Daniel are ushering people out the door. This is one of the times that I see how much people in the service industry hate this week, and I make a mental note to try to be nice and patient to everyone I buy something from. The boys get the door locked and invite me to join them up on the roof while they have a smoke break. It’s a secret world up there, surrounded by beautiful, ornate buildings that used to be the heart of downtown. Back inside, I lay down on a couch and stay out of their way while they go about their routine. All the while I’m having a nostalgic moment, thinking a year back in time to when Carl and I tried to buy this place, realizing this place was almost mine. Passersby are pounding on the door numerous times, 2 girls decide to pop a squat on the offset threshold, drawing Daniel’s ire. It’s 4 am before we leave, nearly an hour late when we get home (frozen pizza and cereal in hand) to the 8 people who are sleeping over and 8 am before we all are calmed down enough for sleep.

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Election 2012: Calling All Candidates in So. Colorado

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As we ramp up our political coverage for our 2012 Election Issue in October, we were frustrated there was not one place you could go to find all the candidates. At PULP we feel it shouldn’t be impossible to find good information on local races for voters.
Who’s running for what? Who are you electing? Where do you register to vote or where do you vote? We feel for everyone to make informed decisions it’s probably best to have a look at who’s on the ballot before you see the ballot.

So we are calling all candidates to send us their contact information. Please give us the best way voters can reach you to ask you questions or get involved with your campaign. Include your website, phone and email information and if you have them your Twitter or Facebook links.

Please send your campaign information to thepaper@pueblopulp.com with the subject ELECTION 2012.

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1st Annual Community Issue

A few months ago, we had the curious idea of having a community issue. The talk ranged from a BEST OF issue to a community guide. Then we had this amazing thought: what if for August, our community issue wasn’t told by us but by you. What if the community stages a revolt and talked about building a better community in PULP?

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Every month, PULP comes together to decide the central theme and stories we should share with you. We want to curate some of the best stories you’ve never heard or narrate the ones you have, in a different way. Since January, we’ve focused on unique stories in every issue and we are proud this voice has been well received.
A few months ago, we had the curious idea of having a community issue. The talk ranged from a BEST OF issue to a community guide. Then we had this amazing thought: what if for August, our community issue wasn’t told by us but by you. What if the community stages a revolt and talked about building a better community in PULP?

In August, for our first annual community issue, we are letting you take over the issue.

Here’s what we are looking for:

  • Tell us a story of an individual or group that’s helping Southern Colorado.
  • Tell us a story of a voice that goes unheard in our community but needs to be heard.
  • Tell us a story of someone who embodies the idea of community either here in Southern Colorado or somewhere else.
  • Tell us a story of something so interesting that it needs to be printed.
  • Show us a great photo capturing the essence of our community.
  • Tell us a story in pictures.

How to begin:

Find a good story and start writing.

Submit your article no more than 600 words. Send all submissions to thepaper@pueblopulp.com. Please include your full name and phone number where we can reach you. We will not print political or partisan editorials. We reserve the right to edit any articles for content, grammar and spelling. Your name will appear in the article. The deadline is July 15th for final submissions.

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Arts & Culture

Open Call: Pueblo Haiku Competition

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Submit your original haiku for possible publication in the August issue of PULP!
To be eligible for publication, the submission must be original and unpublished. Use the format of a poem with seventeen syllables, in three lines of five, seven, and five.

  • The Subjects: Pueblo and/or summer
  • Each individual may submit up to three (3) entries. Each entry must be submitted separately.
  • Submit via email to editor@pueblopulp.com and put HAIKU in the subject line. Submit by mail to Pueblo PULP, Attn: HAIKU, 120 S. Union Ave., Pueblo, CO 81003.
  • Include your full name, city of residence and phone number with each submission.
  • To be eligible for publication, entries must be received by July 10th.
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