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Best S.C. Singer/Performer 2011

bo_picks_durbinIn a year when Santa Cruz could use a little more emotional sunshine, look who comes along to surprise us all—the most brightly lit star (literally) of all in the Cruzan bunch. Kudos to you, James Durbin, for giving Santa Cruz something to root for. It’s enough that Durbin had the chops to make the cut to be among the top contenders on the über hit American Idol; quite another that he’s proven he actually has creativity and—this is good—longevity. Oh, how The Durb has impressed. We raised our eyebrows when he belted out “You’ve Got Another Thing Coming” (by Judas Priest). We sat back and watched, rather amazed actually, by how well he wielded his vocal strength—with enough restraint—to deliver a winning rendition of Paul McCartney’s soulful “Maybe I’m Amazed.” Bon Jovi? Stevie Wonder? Bring it.  The Beatles? Please—his rendition of ”While My Guitar Gently Weeps” made some Cruzans do just that. He killed—for folks over 40 (like myself), that means,“really did well”—Elton John’s “Saturday Night” and, more recently, done up in modern garb, he really gave us something to remember with his unique take on Muse’s spirited “Uprising.” That’s all rockin’ and wild, folks, but Durbin stands out for other reasons.  Sporting both Tourette’s and Asperger’s Syndromes, he’s raised the level of awareness for those with “disabilities.” “I have Tourette’s and Asperger’s, but Tourrette’s and Asperger’s don't have me,” he recently shared. “I don't let it take advantage of me. It's not who I am.” With weekly Durbin TV nights now standard around town, our attention remains on the man—all the way till the season finale, where Durbin actually stands a great chance of nabbing that Idol crown. In the meantime, this force of nature not only deserves the title of Best Local Singer/Performer, he’s also our very own hometown hero. Here’s to ending on a high note, James! (Follow our Idol updates online twice a week!)

Best of Santa Cruz County 2011 index:bo_2011_star
- Best Shops in Santa Cruz >
- Best Food and Drink in Santa Cruz >
- Best Arts & Entertainment & Nightlife in Santa Cruz >
- Best Health and Fitness in Santa Cruz >
- Best Professionals in Santa Cruz >
- Best of the Rest in Santa Cruz >
- Critics Picks in Santa Cruz >
Feature: James Durbin >

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Comments (1)Add Comment
Santa Cruz supports James Durbin! VOTE VOTE VOTE!!!
written by Lawrence Rachleff, April 28, 2011
I've been following James for the past 2 years and I agree with the Good Times that without a doubt, James is the best of Santa Cruz! I'm very happy for his success and it's fantastic that he can showcase his amazing talent, passion and love for singing on a national stage with American Idol. Remember everyone, it's up to us to VOTE every Wednesday night to help James and his family achieve his dream. GO JAMES GO!

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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.

 

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