Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Southkore PUNK festival

The Southkore Shall Rise Again

Southkore Records puts on the first-ever all-Spanish punk festival this weekend. Eric looks into how this came to be.


Rancho Huevos is a shoddy house in Bridgeport that sometimes puts on shows. Tonight, Treinta/Treinta is playing. It looks as if at any moment their singer Swave will bring down the supports with a swing of one of his massive arms. The crowd is a healthy mix of trad skins, gutter punks, regular joes, and some well-dressed spillover from the show at the Texas Ballroom down the street. The lineup includes half a dozen different flavors of punk, from political to skate punk to grindcore. The recently reunited Sin Orden are elder statesmen of the scene. Intifada, whose members are all still in high school, is one of the youngest. Condenada is a bilingual girl group with members of Reaccion and Human Order. The headliners are Hit Me Back, from Los Angeles, and Cinder, a skate-punk act from Spain.

That was a year ago.

The rash of venue closings that swept through the city last year did relatively little to affect the punk scene. Great venues like El Colibri, Transmission, the Needle House, the Crevice and the Command Center pop up and disappear so quickly that there's little time to mourn them. The average lifespan of a good punk house is only a year. It probably comes as no surprise that cops and landlords are no fans of loud music or liberty spikes and that a lot of punks have trouble making rent. According to Cris Balls, who lives at Huevos and plays guitar in No Slogan, "My experience is that every place I've ever lived in, you know going in that they're not going to renew your lease at the end of the year."

30/30 performing at Needle House

From the very beginning, Latinos have played an important role in shaping the sound of Chicago punk rock. In the late '60s, Santiago Durango's family moved to the city from Colombia. He would become one of the founding members of Big Black and Naked Raygun. It was Los Crudos, though, who emerged from Pilsen in the mid-1990s, that many American bands credit with inspiring them to sing in Spanish. Today, Chicago has one of the most vibrant Latino punk scenes in the nation, but it didn't come easily. When Southkore formed in the late 1990s, there was a general feeling that Southside bands weren't getting the same breaks as their contemporaries on the other side of the Loop.

All of the larger (or at least legitimate) all-ages venues in the city — the Fireside Bowl, the Metro, etc. — were on the North Side and whenever bands came in on tour, it seemed like they had all the same groups, coming from all the same places, opening up for them. Southkore began as a collective made up of members of bands from Pilsen, Little Village and Back of the Yards. Despite some initial success, they folded soon thereafter. With some people pulling the collective towards community activism, others towards the musical aspects of their neighborhood scene and still others refusing to work on anything but their own pet projects, there were simply too many members to get anything done.

A couple years back, a smaller Southkore decided to give it another try. While retaining their original goals, their main objective was to record the bands that had been playing for years and never been able to put out records. Their first release was a 7-inch of Non Fiktion Noiz, which wasn't ready until the band's final show. Sitting at a table at the Skylark on South Halsted, Benny Hernandez explains the problems with releasing the album, "Our white friends, and these bands on the North Side ask us why we don't go on tour more often. Why we don't put out albums quicker. They don't understand that we come from a different socioeconomic background, that a lot of us can't take off because we have to work to support not just us but our parents and our families." Swave adds, "And if you can imagine going on tour for four weeks or six weeks, when one of the guys in your band is undocumented, it's a logistical nightmare. Every one of us has had to put some bill on hold, pay the phone or the gas a month late to get these albums out."

Tras de Nada

Records by No Slogan and Eske followed, and then Ratas De Ciudad. Ratas was their first CD, a compilation of all the bands they'd spent the last few years recording. It was released at the first Southkore Fest, which took place in an old factory at the end of the summer in 2004. Due to a printer error, they had no inserts for the jewel cases and took down addresses, over three hundred altogether, at the door, so they could mail the booklets out later. The show featured about a dozen bands from the comp and the neighborhood, and even a couple friends from up North. The cops showed up a couple times when kids had wandered up to the roof, but were finessed away by Condenada's Mariam B, who then threatened to kick the shit out of anyone who caused them to return.

Over the next year the Southside scene exploded. Barriers dropped as Southkore teamed up with Criminal IQ for a holiday show at the Abbey Pub. Bands from the Pilsen/Little Village scene played alongside the likes of Caustic Christ and Kylesa, with legendary punk dinosaurs like the Subhumans and MDC, and with international bands like Skitsystem, Riistetyt and Gouka. Southkore even put out a couple albums by North Side bands like Fourth Rotor and the Pedestrians, and now two years after the first Southkore Fest, they're ready to put on a second.

This time, they're doing everything legit. The show will take place at The Black Hole, an arcade in Little Village, with a new theme. All of the bands playing Southkore Fest 2 are Latino. It is the first fest of its kind in the country and it's bringing in bands from as far away as Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. When I asked why Southkore would organize a fest that would exclude some of its own bands (like the Pedestrians and the Rat Bastards), Swave explained that Latino punk bands tend to get marginalized at festivals like this. Ten years ago, Los Crudos was the Latino punk band in the city, prompting them to write their only English-language song, "That's Right, We're That Spic Band.

"There won't be any 'token' bands at this festival, and you won't see the same bands you'll see everywhere else."

When I asked Benny the same question, he put it slightly less diplomatically. "This fest is like a big fuck you to white punk America, not only are we taking over your country but we're taking over your scene."

Southkore Fest 2 takes place at The Black Hole, 3045 W. 26th, on the 2nd and 3rd of June. In addition to the music program, there is a film program at Meztli Gallery, 556 W. 18th Street, on Saturday the 3rd, featuring the documentary "Beyond the Screams" and a talk with its director Martin Sorrondeguy (of Los Crudos and Limp Wrist). More information at www.southkorerecords.com.

Southkore Records


Wednesday, May 24, 2006


This SATURDAY, MAY 27TH @ 6 P.M.

Join us for a a bilingual reading and benifit for


Held at Cafe Mestizo/Tianguis Books
1646 W. 18th St.

"We must come to understand that stifling a woman's imagination is too
costly a price to pay for servitude." ---Helena Maria Viramontes

Hosted by:
Silvia 'Ilxica' Rivera

*Achy Obejas
*Juan Carlos Domecq
*Maria A. Beltran-Vocal
*Juana Goergen
*Paul Martinez Pompa
*Irasema Gonzalez

This event is free but we do kindly ask that you consider a donation to
Mujeres Latinas en Accion.

Mujeres Latinas en Accion is currently celebrating its 30th year. Part
of their mission is to empower women and youth to become self reliant
and able to take full advantage of available opportunities to improve
the quality of life. For more information on their programs and
services visit: www.mujereslatinasenaccion.org

For event details: www.tianguis.biz

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Bring no GREEN($): trade

Colectivo Tiempo de Caracol invites you to bring something to trade:

Bring no $$ but bring something to trade with someone else.

Saturday May 27th from 10am-4pm
Sunday May 28th from 10am-4pm

Where: La Plaza Aguila, 18th and Blue Island

Call 773.656.4285 for more info

**Bring no Money....No Dirty Laundry! Keep it Clean!**

old (1999) pilsen photos

This is a collection of Photos I took during the summer of 1999. Enjoy...

Above is an alternative/cultural space called "Calles y Sueños/Casa de Arte y Cultura", and it existed on 19th and Carpenter from 1994-2000. The small murals are now gone.

Before the Seven Three Split gallery(Who since moved to Los Angeles) there was El Viejo Cafe on 18th and Morgan.

And before Kristoffer's Cafe there was the Hardware Cafe.

Cafe Jumping Bean

In 1999 Polvo was on Cullerton and Wood

Mural by Marcos Raya and others.

Mural by Aurelio Diaz

Mural by Jeff Zimmerman

hunger strike: immigrant activists in Pilsen

I want to inform you on a hunger strike with immigrant activists: Elvira Arrelano and Flor Crisostomo since May 10th, 2006. Please help them to spread the message to the Bush administration about calling "an immediate moratorium on raids and deportations and the seperation of families until Congress fixes its broken immigration laws".

You can help and support them by many ways, first, by coming and sharing your energies to them or by the following:

1. Helping with megaphone in the street, since many of the protestors are fasting, their energies are low.

2. Supplying bottled waters or hot tea, maybe you can get to sponsor this yourself or find donations.

3. Going on 18th street to pass out fliers around spreading the word about the hunger protest.

4. If you are an artist or a poet, they want to plan for Friday a visual and sound manifestation.

5. If you a journalist or photographers: please support the cause by documenting and spreading the word out.

If you can help with any of these, please call Victor Arroyo 773.403.3637 otherwise one can find them at:

Plaza Tenochtitlan: located in the corner of loomis, Blue Island street and 18th streets

This week's schedule is:

Tuesday, May 23: 12 noon until 8 night

Then starting Wednesday, May 24: 12 noon until Tuesday, May 30, they will be sleeping outside at the plaza.

Then will be a mass protest on Thursday, June 1: 8 am to 4 PM 55 E. Monroe, corner of Wabash and Monroe.

Thank you for your support!

Monday, May 22, 2006

Mirtes Zwierzynski and Rebecca Wolfram

End of May: Mirtes Zwierzynski and Rebecca Wolfram

mini-exhibit: Esperanza Zabala (Salamanca, Spain)
flatscreen DVD: Lucreccia Quintanilla (Melbourne, Australia)

Opening Friday May 26, from 6pm-10pm

May 26 - June 17, 2006

The show titled "End of May" brings together two artists who have collaborated over the years and have exhibited most recently in Oaxaca, Mexico. Mirtes will exhibit her most recent 2d work and Rebecca will do an installation based on the song "Delgadina", a ballad about a woman whose father, a king, wants to sexually abuse her; she refuses and is put in prison where she dies of thirst.

Rebecca Wolfram was born in Oregon but has been a painter in Chicago for a long time: some twenty-five years. She was a founding member of the Axe Street Arena collective, active in the 1980s. During its existence this group brought together diverse political and artistic communities in a variety of cultural activities. She usually paints with oil on traditional canvas or other surfaces, and has exhibited in numerous venues over the years, in solo, two person and group exhibits.

Mirtes Zwierzynski is an artist and educator with over twenty years of experience creating and implementing public art programs focused on urban and educational development. Extensive exposure developing community based participatory research art projects and in organizing workshops and training activities for teachers and cultural activists. She is an active member in the Chicago Public Art Group. Her work has been shown at places like Aldo Castillo Gallery, Prospectus Art Gallery, The Ukrainian Instute of Modern Art and countless other spaces.

1458 W. 18th St. 1R
Chicago, IL 60608
Hours: Saturdays from Noon-5pm or by appointment

Friday, May 19, 2006


West Town Leadership United Little Village EnvironmentalJustice Organization POWER-PACSouthwest Women Working TogetherPilsen Alliance/Whittier PartnersLogan Square Neighborhood AssociationBlaine PTACasa AztlanParents at Cooper/Orozco/Pilsen Academyand Healthy Schools Campaign PRESENT

Better Food and More Exercise in CPS Schools

Emcee - Enrique Rodriguez from Univision, Channel 66
Thursday, May 25 - 2:00 – 4:00 P.M.
Humboldt Park Boathouse1359 N. Sacramento (East Side)

Community Speakers
Political and School Leaders
Family Health Information
Kids’ Activities
Healthy Food Samples

A listening panel of elected officials will include:
Jessie Ruiz, Chair, Illinois State Board of Education
Dr. Tariq Butt, Board Member, Chicago Board of Education
Elliot Reganstein, Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich's office
Dr. Terry Mason, Commissioner, Chicago Department of Public Health
Mary Ellen Caron, Commissioner, Chicago Department of Children & Youth Services
William "Willie" Delgado, 3rd District State Representative
Cynthia Soto, 4th District State Representative
Monique Davis, 27th District State Representative
Mary Flowers, 31st District State Representative
Maria Antonia Berrios, 39th District State Representative
Manny Flores, 1st Ward Alderman
Billy Ocasio, 26th Ward Alderman
Ed Smith, 28th Ward Alderman
Ariel Reboyras, 30th Ward Alderman
You will be able to see coverage of the rally on Univision (channel 66) on May 25th, during the 5pm and 10pm news broadcasts.

INFORMATION: (312) 419-1810
For more information contact Guillermo Gomez at ggomez@healthyschoolscampaign.org or visit www.studentbodychallenge.org/chicago

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Native Visions Cinema

Meztli Gallery & Cultural Organization
First Nation Film & Video Festival

16 Groundbreaking Films by Talented Native Directors of the Western Hemisphere

SATURDAY, MAY 20th, 2006
12:00 pm 4:00 pm
Raven Tales (23min)
The Last Great Hunt (7min 30sec)
Asveq, the Walrus Hunt (8min 26sec)
Easy Street (18min 17sec)
The Sharing Circle (30min)
Mirando Hacia Dentro (35min)
Welcome to Todos Santos (27min)

5:00 P.M.- 6:30 P.M.
Ceremony Performed by Mexica Elder
Ray Cruz and Ojebwa elder Star Bresette.
Music and Video presentation by
Raiz Viva

7:00 P.M. - 11:00 PM
Sucker Fish (8 min)
Geronimo & Pocahontas Discover England (29min 53sec)
Yellow Dust (6min 35sec)
Resevation War Parties (13min)
The Ghost Rider (50min)
Indian for Indian Radio (11min)
Caracoles (42min)
Zapatista Woman Speak (19min)
Cuando la Justicia Hace Pueblo (26min)

556 W. 18th st.
INFO: 312-738-0860
551 W. 18th St.


LiveBox is a new non-for-profit gallery focused on video and new media art. We do not have a white cubed space, but regard Chicagoland as the gallery. We're in discussion with shops and businesses in several neighborhoods where we would install a monitor and exhibit primarily single channel video. In addition, LiveBox is collaborating with owners of larger spaces to create temporary exhibits, e.g. LiveBox at Ravenswood is an exhibit the first weekend in June at a donated 1800 sg ft loft, in August LiveBox will project on to a building overlooking I90, and in October LiveBox will create a virtual reality exhibition hosted by Kasia Kay Art Projects.

We're looking for ideas and opportunities to create access to media art around Chicago, public spaces with a lot of traffic. Doable inexpensive ideas. It's a challenge, got any ideas?

... and please join us for :"Space, Place & Interface"
3701 N. Ravenswood, #251, Chicago

June 2-4 2006, Opening Friday June 2nd, 6-10 PM

Saturday noon - 6 PM, Sunday noon - 5 PM Exhibiting Artists

Exhibiting Artists:
Kristin Anderson
Bebe Beard
Alexandra do Carmo
Thom van der Doef
George Drivas
Wojciech Gilewicz
Scott Kildall
Hyeyun Park
Joon Sung
Shawn Towne


"Viva Chile"

"Viva Chile"

singer Paula Monsalve with Chilean guitar virtuoso Rodrigo Apablaza
Guest musicians: Nelson Sosa, John Selby, Javier Sausa and Luis Jahn.


Thursday, May 18 , 7 pm @ Lecture Center B2
750 S. Halsted For more info 312-996-3095

Paula Monsalve was born and raised in Linares, Chile. Growing up in a family and culture with a strong folk music tradition, she began singing and playing the guitar at age seven. During high school and the university, where she majored in English, she performed alone and in various folk music ensembles. At age twenty-two, she left Chile for Spain to begin her professional singing career.

Performing a Latin American folk and New Song repertoire in the night clubs and coffee houses of Madrid, she captivated the Spanish audiences with her luscious voice and lively, charming style.

While in Europe, she met the Chilean composer and multi-instrumentalist Joakin Bello. During the 1980's Paula became the principal interpreter of his spiritual songs, which are inspired by the world's sacred traditions. During this period they performed scores of concerts in Europe and the Americas. They recorded 3 LP's: Hijo del Planeta (Son of the Planet),1982; Yo Soy (I am),1983; and Se Feliz (Be Happy), 1985.

Since 1984, Paula has lived in Indiana with her North American husband and two children. While balancing the role of mother and singer she has become a true cultural ambassador to the Midwest. Whether performing before elementary school children or university students, or before a church congregation in a small Indiana town or before a sophisticated urban audience, she can transcend any language and cultural barrier. Audiences who have little or no exposure to LatinAmerican music come away delighted by the rich beauty of Paula's voice as she weaves her colorful tapestry of Latin melodies and rhythms. Her 1987 album " Yo Tengo Tantos Hermanos " (I have so many brothers and sisters), is a sampling of her folk repertoire.

During 90's Paula moved into the realm of the bolero- the slow rhythmic and very danceable love song of Afro-Cuban origin. Her album entitled "Solo Boleros" (1994), is the product of a collaboration with her brother Roberto Monsalve, as keyboardist and arranger, and Erich Bulling, as producer, arranger and musician. During 1999 the English version of this album was released under the title "Speak To Me", with Paula interpreting songwriter Brian Braff 's new Bolero-inspired lyrics.
In 1996 Paula took her Latin folk and ballad repertoire to the concert hall venue as guest soloist with the Richmond Symphony Orchestra. This concert was such a hit that Richmond invited her back again to do the Valentine's Day concert in 1998. Both times, Paula was accompanied by her brother, Roberto, at the piano, and by Rodrigo Apablaza on the guitar.

For the year 2000 Paula has taken her career to new heights with the release of her latest album, Concierto, at her highly acclaimed "Latin American Pops" concert with the Anderson Symphony Orchestra. The Concierto album is a recording of the music performed in Paula's symphonic concerts, with Roberto Monsalve, pianist, Rodrigo Apablaza, guitarist/arranger, and musicians from the Santiago (Chile) Symphony Orchestra.

RODRIGO APABLAZA was born in Viña del Mar, Chile. He studied at the music Conservatory of the University of Chile (1970 to 1977), in later at the Berklee School of Music in Boston (1978-1981). Rodrigo is one of the most talented and sought-after guitarist/arrangers in Chile. For the past 20 years he has worked on a wide variety of projects and settings. These include recordings of Raúl de Blasio, Jorge Caraccioli and Cecilia Echeñique. He has been the director, guitarist and arranger for the Viña del Mar Orchestra, and founded the Big Band for the University of Valparaiso. He has been Musical Director in TV productions and composed numerous things for Television. In 1990 he won the prize for "Best Orchestral Arrangements" at the Interamericana Television Organization Festival (OTI). During 1995 Rodrigo acompanied Isabel Parra in the Brunswick Music Festival in Melbourne, Australia. Rodrigo was the person Paula contacted when she needed someone to take on the monumental task of composing and writing the Orchestral arrangements for her first Richmond Shymphony Orchestra Concert in 1996. He then helped give life to these arrangements by working with the conductors and playing the guitar in both RSO concerts. Most recently from his home in Chile, Rodrigo has directed the recording of Paula's "Concierto" Album.

Center for Latino Research at DePaul University y la revista contratiempo

Center for Latino Research at DePaul University y la revista contratiempo te invitan a la plática sobre:

Las elecciones presidenciales en México y el movimiento de los inmigrantes en la nueva jungla

Homero Campa, revista proceso, México
José Artemio Arreola, Movimiento 10 de Marzo, Chicago
Nativo López, Mexican American Political Association, California

Sábado 20 de mayo de 2006
6:00 pm

Casa Michoacán
1638 S. Blue Island
(773) 325- 7316 y (312) 491-0554

Después de la plática habrá una recepción

Copatrocinan: Chicago Center for Working Class Studies e Instituto de Estudios Culturales de Pilsen

Saturday, May 13, 2006

from EXTRA Newspaper

“ENTORNO: grass grows greener on the other side” is an exhibition of Chicago based visual artists, community activists and scholars focused on the idea of “environment,” using Chicago’s landscape and its resident communities as the central theme. The city of Chicago has been going through rapid urban renewal fostered by huge promises to change the city for the betterment of its residents. In reality the persistent issues of displacement, economic class segregation, racism and ageism have come into sharper focus as a result of these renewed initiatives. This exhibition examines how visual artists, community activists and scholars look into their own communities and through their expression, critique the city government’s reactions to these crucial concerns.

Located in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood, Polvo is an alternative space operated by the Polvo Art Collective. This exhibition includes work by the following participants: D. Denenge Akpem, AREA Chicago, Amy Castaneda, Citizenship and Voter Training School (CIVITAS), Miguel Cortez, Anida Yoeu Esguerra, Little Village Environmental Justice Organization, Jesus Macarena-Avila, Naomi Martinez, Mess Hall, PERRO (Pilsen Environmental Rights and Reform Organization), Pilsen Ayuda, Elvia Rodriguez-Ochoa, Bernard Williams.

Shown here are some images from the opening of “Entorno” on Friday, April 28. This show will run until May 20. Polvo is located at 1458 W. 18th St 1R and is open Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m. or by appointment. For more information, call (773) 344-1940 or visit www.polvo.org. Below is a video by PERRO titled "Air Over Pilsen".

Friday, May 12, 2006

Victor Sorell in La Raza

Sorell reflexiona sobre arte chicano

El historiador de arte Víctor Sorell reflexionó sobre el arte chicano y su evolución hacia las actuales manifestaciones artísticas donde la tecnología tiene un papel preponderante, en una entrevista con La Raza.

Sorell es reconocido como uno de los pioneros en la documentación, interpretación crítica y promoción de la Historia del Arte Chicano y hoy dictará la conferencia “Latina(o) Art in the United States (of North America), Mapping Cultural Geographies”, en el Columbia College de Chicago, como parte de la exposición “Lo Romantico: Chicago's Latino/a Art”.

Dicha exposición, que permanecerá hasta el 5 de mayo, hace allusion a la preactica de los inmigrantes que tienen una imagen romántica de su herencia por el desplazamiento cultural o por la nostalgia.

Sorell se refirió al arte chicano en Chicago y opinó que éste ha seguido corrientes tecnológicas muy fuertes.

“Un artista como Jesús Macarena Ávila es muy hábil con las computadoras, así como otros artistas que conforman el grupo Polvo con Miguel Cortéz y Macarena Ávila a la cabeza. Ellos tienen su web site y están a la vanguardia de los adelantos tecnológicos aplicados al arte”, precisó.

“Sin embargo, tienen un punto de vista de resistencia y crean y comentan los problemas del latino en general como la inmigración, la represión y en éste momento el movimiento anti-inmigrante”, continuó.

Para Sorell, aunque hagan uso de esta tecnología, la lucha sigue y han encontrado similitudes con artistas portorriqueños y cubanos por lo que ya no se sienten tan aislados. “El arte chicano sigue fortaleciéndose”, afirmó.

En la actualidad Sorell es profesor de Historia del Arte y rector asociado del College of Arts and Science de la Chicago State University.

come to Casa Michoacan this week

Hello Pilsen residents and friends of Pilsen!

As you probably know, we won 75% of the vote for the down-zoning
referendum, to stop luxury condo conversions. The problem is that we have not heard if Alderman Solis is going to listen to voters or not! We believe he should listen to the community.

This is why it is very important you come to the community meeting on Wednesday May 17th, at 6 pm; Solis has been invited and we expect him to give us an answer.

It will be at Casa Michoacan at 1638 S. Blue Island. We hope to see you there!

If you do not know what Pilsen is going through, see this or see our artistic response from 2004.


These people don't like to type in their mass emails and expect people to just open their attachments(which i hate when I get emails like this...type the basic info first and if people are interested they will open the attachment...dammnit). I usually do open these(from meztli) because they showcase some great theater aside from art exhibits every so often and they are in east pilsen surrounded by Podmajerks.

last week @ prospectus gallery

I walked to Prospectus Gallery, which is 3 blocks away from me to attend my friend Mark Nelson's opening. On the way I took these 2 shots.

Prospectus is a commercial gallery that recently reopened after many years of hiatus and a lot of the work they show is very 2d and not very challenging. Mark has done wonderful installations in the past and to see his paintings is different, and he is great at it also...there were just too many. All were too close together.I felt bombarded visually and that took away from the work. His work is at Prospectus, 1210 W. 18th St. until late june. Check it out.