Amy Knoles

Amy Knoles

First, a few DEVOtions
There are four very special, must-see arts events happening in Chico this week that, if we consider ourselves cultured beings, we have to try and make time for. I know there are some big parties competing for your time (MaMuse CD-release, Donovan Frankenreiter at Chico State, several Irish music showcases), but there are also these for your to-do list:

• New Music Symposium: Three days in a row of new music at Chico State’s fifth annual Alfred Loeffler New Music Symposium Thurs.-Sat., Feb. 26-28, in Rowland-Taylor Recital Hall. The first couple of nights feature a variety of multimedia, electronic, interactive video and dance pieces by students, alumni and faculty, but probably the most exciting performance is the closing night act by visiting artist Amy Knoles. Like most experimental artists, Knoles dabbles in just about everything and has played with just about everyone (including John Cage, Kronos Quartet, Frank Zappa and the legendary Los Angeles new music ensemble, the California E.A.R. Unit). For her Chico engagement, Knoles will perform electronic, percussion and interactive video works, including her trippy “Sacred Cow” piece featuring a Japanese Butoh dancer. More info at

• B Side: Generations: TiON’s Black History Month celebration (Friday, Feb. 27) is stacked with presenters and performers: In addition to family stories told by headliner and When We Were Colored author Eva Rutland, there will be presentations by a host of locals: saxophonist Rudy Giscombe, A.S. Presents coordinator Dwight Frey, MC EyeQue, dancer Naphtali Jones, English professor Tracy Butts and many others.

• A special artist birthday party: Paradise painter Lois Cohen turned 90 this past weekend, and the James Snidle Fine Arts gallery is celebrating with a two-week exhibit for this elder stateswoman of the local art scene March 1-14 (birthday party/reception, Thursday, March 12, 5-8 p.m.).

• In the Blood: Chico State’s first theater performance of the spring semester is the Scarlet Letter-riffing, Pulitzer Prize-winning play by badass playwright/screenwriter Suzan-Lori Parks. Opens Wednesday, March 4, in Harlen Adams Theatre.

Let me clear my throat
Give it up, Chico, for your 2009 CAMMIES nominees! You may notice that we decided to not limit the number of nominees per category to just five this year. If there were one or two on the cusp in a given category, they were added to the nominee list. Bonus bands! All the better to party with at the upcoming genre showcases that will be taking over Chico venues from mid-March through mid-April. Info at

Let’s do this. Your 2009 Chico Area Music Awards nominees are:

• Folk/Acoustic: Dick and Jane, Erin Lizardo, MaMuse, Pat Hull, Zach Zeller

This guy is ready for the CAMMIES

• Country/Americana: Aubrey Debauchery & The Puke Boots, The Cheatin’ Hearts, Crazygrass, Mossy Creek, Ol’ Yeller, Three Fingers Whiskey

• Jazz: Beans N’ Rice Experiment, Elke/D’Augelli Jazz Duo, Groove Diggers, The Holly Taylor & Eric Peter Jazz Duo, Shigemi Minetaka & Christine LaPado

• Blues: Bawl ’n’ Chain, Big Mo and The Full Moon Band, Norton Buffalo, Rube & the Rhythm Rockers, Sapphire Soul

• Funk/Jam: Dave Elke Trio, Electric Circus, The Jeff Pershing Band, Spark ’n’ Cinder, Swamp Zen

• World/Celtic/Reggae: Boss 501, Ha’penny Bridge, Los Papi Chulos, The Pub Scouts, Watson 349

• Hip-hop: Dr. Becky Sagers, Ph.D., Himp C, The Hooliganz, One Up The Acoustic DJ, P.AND.A., The Resonators, TyBox

• Rock/Pop: Candy Apple, Gorgeous Armada, Mute Witness, The Shankers, Surrogate

• Hard Rock/Metal: Armed For Apocalypse, Blood of Cain, Esoteric, Lysistrata, The Makai

• Punk: The Baghdad Batteries, Black Hole of Calcutta, Gruk, ¡Mammoth Torta!, Zabaleen

• Indie/Experimental: Bear Hunter, Dr. Yes!, La Fin du Monde, Red Giant, The Secret Stolen, The Shimmies, West By Swan

• Electronic: Anamnesis, Ayrian, Basic, Holger Honda, Manic One, Metisyn