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Feb 13th
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The Chop Tops

music_LYLBChopTopsSanta Cruz psychobilly veterans The Chop Tops are in the midst of an insane 10,000 mile tour—35 shows across 20 states, in just five weeks. Having survived the East Coast earthquake, the band now finds itself driving into the keister of one of the biggest hurricanes in recent memory, Irene. Putting the “psycho” in rockabilly is nothing new for these road warriors who eschew the corporate model of rock and roll and live every day grateful for the opportunity to be independent working musicians. Stand-up guy and drummer (a la Slim Jim Phantom of The Stray Cats) Sinner started the band 16 years ago and is currently enjoying his eleventh U.S. tour. Totally organized and supported in a grassroots style, The Chop Tops began touring nationwide in 1998. “A lot of bands go to Europe to get established and get a bigger name—we decided to do it here, work here and make a name for ourselves in the U.S.,” says Sinner, from on the road in Florida. “We went full-time about six years ago—and it’s been a blessing. No more day jobs.” Guitarist Shelby happened to meet Sinner in the parking lot of The Catalyst and eventually joined the band along with bassist Brett Black. With equity among members being central to the band’s philosophy, The Chop Tops live and breathe a DIY lifestyle. Even their sponsors, like Murray’s Pomade, help the band bring roots authenticity (and slick hair) to the stage. “Although our sponsors are large companies, they are very grassroots, just like ourselves—we’re very grateful,” Sinner adds. The hometown-minded band says it’s proud to represent Santa Cruz while traveling around the nation, and is eagerly anticipating its triumphant return to where it all began—The Catalyst—on Sept. 11, alongside The Strikers and The Rocketz.

 


INFO: 9 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 11. Catalyst Atrium, 1011 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $10/adv, $13/door. 423-1338.

 

Photo Credit: Blake Hatchet

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

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