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Fresh City Life stops for Perpetual Motion

Perpetual Motion -- Josie Quick and Tom Carleno. Photo by John Moore

Sometimes it is worth it to stop and enjoy something on your journey, rather than to always be in perpetual motion. This past Saturday we got to do both. Denver locals Josie Quick and Tom Carleno brought Perpetual Motion to Fresh City Life.

Right off, I'll tell you that, if you missed this wonderful concert, we will be bringing Perpetual Motion back for an encore in the new year. They are fantastic!

This sought-after duo blends acoustic world music into a bright fusion of sounds. Mixing international styles, Perpetual Motion moves effortlessly between the traditions of Central and South American folk, progressive jazz, blues and rock. This eclectic approach to music informs their original compositions and cover tunes. 

Johnny Guitar: 10 Reasons to See This Film

Joan Crawford at the climax of Johnny Guitar

McCarthy-era symbolism, great landscapes, amazing TruColor costumes and sets, Joan Crawford's eyebrows -- this movie has something for everybody.

I saw Johnny Guitar about ten years ago and I liked it just fine then. Now it is one of my favorite films of the 1950s. Here's why:

10. Joan Crawford in a Western! WWJD -- What would Joan do? What wouldn't she do?

9. The landscapes, filmed in TruColor, are spectacular and somehow just a bit alien.

8. Johnny Guitar makes a great case against the blacklisting and witch hunts of the McCarthy Era.

Camping with the Stars: Joan Crawford's First Time at the Rodeo

Joan Crawford

Crawford puts down the wire hanger and picks up her six shooters in the Western film that has become a cult and auteur classic.

Toward the end of her life, Joan Crawford was asked to comment on the 1954 film Johnny Guitar. She answered that she thought she was wrong for the part and she wished she hadn't made the film. I'm glad she did -- and so are a lot of fans of Crawford and the Western genre. 

Go West, Judy, Go West!

At the height of her musical powers, Judy Garland brings a Broadway sensibility to the Wild, Wild West in The Harvey Girls.

The Harvey Girls is a Hollywood original, but it feels like a Broadway musical brought to the big screen.

This summer, I lost four bowling balls. And a half.

Eat to Live

The average bowling ball weighs 12-13 pounds. This summer, with the help of Dr. Joel Fuhrman's Eat To Live, I've lost 57 pounds -- or about four and half bowling balls.

Can you imagine carrying four bowling balls around with you all day -- from the moment you wake up until you get back into bed? I can and I did. I've still got a long way to go, but I'm celebrating those four bowling balls. And a half.

Do you erhu what I erhu?

The erhu is a two-stringed, bowed musical instrument, also called a spike fiddle. Erhoopla Variety Show makes amazing music with this rare instrument. Pop, jazz, American songbook and traditional Chinese -- all get their turn with Erhoopla.

Referred to as the "Chinese violin" or the "Chinese two-stringed fiddle," Western musicians have co-opted the erhu for their music because of its unique, often melancholy sound. Two of our favorite musicians Brian Mullins and Mike Fitzmaurice play the Chinese erhu along with a variety of other Chinese instruments. This lively duo call themselves Erhoopla Variety Show and are back, by popular demand, for an encore performance at the Denver Public Library.

Bring Fresh To Your City Life This Week

Whether it's a seeing a classic film, learning a fibers technique or enjoying a fantastic concert -- Fresh City Life has a little something for everyone this week. 

Tonight is our ongoing celebration for the Denver Public Library's Film Series 10th Anniversary. In the second installment of our Westward the Women collection, we'll be showing Destry Rides Again, a film that marked Marlene Dietrich's Triumpahnt return to the screen after several near career-ending films. The series continues for two more weeks: next films up are The Harvey Girls and Johnny Guitar (with Joan Crawford as the head cowgirl!) Showtime 6p in the B2 Conference Center.

We Won't Get Too Comfortable, David

David Rakoff lost his long battle with cancer on August 9. He was 47. A unique literary voice and humorist, in his writing, Rakoff was a self-effacing, cheerful cynic. 

I fell in love with David Rakoff's writing when my friend, Ron, told me that he thought David and I were alike in our cynicism, pessimism and (I suppose) in utilizing them to get a laugh. Shortly after that, I received all of David's books in the mail; my friend decided I should find out for myself. 

Marlene Dietrich Goes West

Marlene Dietrich made her Hollywood comeback in the film Destry Rides Again starring opposite Jimmy Stewart. And Dietrich rides again this Tuesday at our 10th Anniversary Film Series.

I mentioned to a friend this weekend that Marlene Dietrich's starring role in the popular film Destry Rides Again was a comeback performance for her. My friend asked how Dietrich could have a comeback when her career was strong and steady all the way through. Which is how most movie fans think of Dietrich. 

Every Little Detail Plays A Part

Our booth in its beginning stages, about two hours in.

Today, Trish and I -- and a couple helpers -- put together our Fresh City Life booth for the Denver County Fair. We had a great time, a lot of laughs and built something that will make fair-goers smile.

And the process, since we really only had a general idea of how it would come together, reminded me of the Stephen Sondheim classic, Putting It Together:

Bit by bit, putting it together
Piece by piece, only way to make a work of art
Every moment makes a contribution
Every little detail plays a part
Having just a vision's no solution
Everything depends on execution
Putting it together (That's what counts)

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