Arts Devo

Weird Chico meets the shoulder of pain

Sequoyah Sound Monks

Sequoyah Sound Monks

Photo by Michelle Camy

Freakin’ awesome Exactly how much weird does Chico have in it? That’s the question Arts DEVO has each year we start planning the CN&R’s Keep Chico Weird Talent Show. I wonder if this will be the year that the well runs dry and we all have to return to our dull lives, devoid of the colors of acro-enthusiasts, experimental musicians and off-color comics. Well, with year five of this ongoing celebration and cultural experiment on the books, I can say that Chico is still plenty weird. Our first foray into the Senator Theatre wasn’t as intimate of a scene as the one provided by the cozy El Rey, but it’s still a cool old building that offers a great backdrop for a proper freak show.

At the end of the night, the top three finishers were: throat-singing, jaw-bone playing, electronic-looper Whipple (third place); straightjacket dancer Myleena Warrior Princess (second); and the LED-framed beatbox/throat-singing duo Sequoyah Sound Monks blowing the roof off the place for the top prize.

“Chico Wedding Cape,” by Sarah Amaral

Photo by Jason Cassidy

A couple nights earlier, at the KCW Art Show (with the new Museum of Northern California Art providing a beautiful home for the offbeat group show), Sarah Amaral and her inventive “Chico Wedding Cape” adorned with molded vinyl albums, took home Best of Show.

Congrats to all the winners, and a heartfelt thanks to all the artists and helpers who continue to keep Chico weird.

Farewell to arm Dude, this is going to suuuuuck. As you read this, Arts DEVO is likely propped up on the couch at home moping over his right shoulder as his arm hangs in a sling during the first few days of what promises to be a long recovery from rotator cuff surgery. No typing for five to eight weeks, and no most-everything-I-enjoy-doing—playing guitar, gardening, circuit-training class—for much longer.

It’s not all bad, though. As the initial pain from surgery subsides, I look forward to a couple weeks of resting well after one of the most physically demanding months in recent memory—spent as it was trying to shove into February a whole spring’s worth of shoulder-dependent work (wheel-barrowing rocks and dirt, building fences and planter boxes) and work- and special events-planning. I’ll catch up on reading and new music and put the poodle’s cuddle function to good use, and hopefully be back in these pages, pecking away with one hand, in a couple of weeks. And, of course, I’ll eventually have a new and improved shoulder that will no longer feel like it’s full of marbles and broken glass when I try to raise my arm above my head. To good health, friends. Enjoy it while you have it.