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Stories by David Stampone

Tissue Tribute

KCR DJ “Scott Tissue” (aka Russ Lewis, former Reader proofreader) gets plaque dedication at SDSU radio station where he was on the air over 25 years.

Capital T The SDMAs

Heads have been scratched, queries have been made: folks wanna know more about “The San Diego Music Awards” that tops the Casbah bill on March 29. “Truthfully, it’s not much different than an extension of ...

What of Young Teddy Ballgame?

Be it glorious summer — or just after another homegrown baseball talent leaves the Padres for the Red Sox — Ted Williams (1918–2002) remains eternally relevant. “Teddy Ballgame” endures as arguably the greatest achiever among ...

From the Future

For all of the welcome reunited San Diego acts scheduled to play the Michael “Stimy” Steinman memorial at the Casbah on Wednesday, February 16, one artist was especially missed when the lineup was announced. A ...

Man, You Gotta Move

The anthemic, Clash-esque Coronado band the Front was finishing their set, opening for Johnny Thunders at the Spirit (now Brick by Brick) on March 20, 1986. After vigorous punk ’n’ roll originals, some reggae, a ...

R.I.P., Stimy

The arrival of 2011 found many in San Diego’s music scene saddened. Michael H. Steinman, 37, the talented rock singer-songwriter-guitarist and former Live Wire bartender, passed away on December 30 (causes unclear at press time). ...

San Diego Hip-Hop — Very Verité

619 hip-hop kingpin Mitchy Slick did not win “Best of” in his category at last month’s San Diego Music Awards, despite a spirited write-in campaign launched by SDRaps.com. But at least considerable debate was generated ...

Is Mitchy Slick's Rap Too Real for the San Diego Music Awards?

Yes, another San Diego Music Awards — Sunday is the 20th annual — another hip-hop category controversy. Nothing new here. Some may remember the local rap artist “Trick” picketing the SDMAs outside Humphrey’s back in ...

Burn, Piano, Burn

“I love San Diego and I love Brooklyn,” explained Golden Triangle drummer Jay Hough via email from Calgary. Trapsman from 1999 to 2003 for San Diego’s defunct GoGoGo AirHeart, Hough returned to SD last Sunday ...

Songs of the City

You may recall Baby Rock, the notorious Tijuana nightclub founded in the late ’80s. A 1997 U.S. News and World Report article on Mexico’s booming drug trade found it to be “an elaborate faux-cave, four-level ...

The Pack Represents

Dude, your band’s from where? Ah, yes, the local music coverage angle that never quits: debate over claimed/perceived/insufficient geographic affiliation. San Diego CityBeat scribe Todd Kroviak weighed in last Wednesday (3/31) with a column entitled ...

Passing Strange

The short and stocky black performer perked up in conversation at a Brooklyn bar last month. “San Diego? Heidi and I were just talking about San Diego the other day, remembering how important it was ...

Who Are the Hi-Five?

Winning their fourth straight AFC West championship, the San Diego Chargers ended their regular season as a possible Super Bowl team. As their postseason commenced last Sunday, one could imagine hopeful Bolts faithful singing along ...

Soundtrack DJ

For UCSD grad Devon Goldberg, it’s like doing his old free-form radio show back at the student-run campus station KSDT — but different. Schedule permitting, every Saturday night from 10 p.m. to midnight local time, ...

I Bleed Spartan Blue

The Padres earned no invite to baseball’s Fall Classic this year, but San Diego already had its 2009 global champs in Chula Vista’s Park View Little League Blue Bombers, who beat Taiwan in the Little ...

People Who Died

“San Diego will always have a special place in my heart as the place I began my career in rock ’n’ roll,” expressed the late author Jim Carroll 20 years ago. It was in an ...

The Geography of Jazz

The East West Quintet’s name says a lot, geographically speaking. If you pick up the jazz-rock combo’s ambitious second album (this year’s Vast), you will see a shout-out to their East Coast base on closing ...

Where Is "Sweet Rock and Roll"?

Somewhere in San Diego a tantalizing Holy Grail of rock performance history is awaiting discovery in a dusty corner…maybe. As documented in Richie Unterberger’s comprehensive new book White Light/White Heat: The Velvet Underground Day by ...

An Epitaph for East Memphis Slim

When Memphis session player and producer Jim Dickinson passed away at age 67 from heart complications on Saturday, August 15, few music fans may have realized how vast his résumé was — one that included ...

No Helicopter, No Iron Butterfly

The 40th anniversary of Woodstock this weekend also marks the career-curtailing failure of San Diego’s Iron Butterfly to play the historic festival as scheduled. How did things fall apart for the Butterfly in August of ...

No Bubblegum Punk

“Temecula Sunrise,” eh? Listeners to this gorgeous track on Bitte Orca, the acclaimed month-old fifth album from Brooklyn art-rock band Dirty Projectors — headlining at the Casbah tonight — may wonder what it’s all about. ...

The Red Wing and the Rock Star

Which former San Diego County resident looms largest in popular music? Zappa? Waits? Jewel? A case can be made for Eddie Vedder, who went from struggling SD musician to front man of grunge monsters Pearl ...

Snake Sighting

Tonight’s headliners at the Belly Up, the Night Marchers, San Diego knows well; three quarters of the band’s members were together from 1999 to 2005 as Hot Snakes. The fourth Hot Snake was singer-guitarist Rick ...

Puck Rock?

Before founding Megadeth, veteran thrash-master Dave Mustaine (born September 13, 1961, in La Mesa, currently living in Fallbrook) was Metallica’s original lead guitarist before getting replaced by Kirk Hammett in 1983. These days, Mustaine has ...

Not the Same Ol' Song

As far as tunes that name-check the team go, the new track "San Diego Chargers," by Mexican dance-pop-punk-funk duo Plastilina Mosh won't take over first place in the hearts of Chargers faithful anytime soon — ...

Orange Alert for Dengue Fever

The future looked promising for Dengue Fever when the critically acclaimed psych-surf-worldbeat indie act fronted by Cambodian immigrant Chhom Nimol was driving home to Los Angeles after opening for Jonathan Richman at the Casbah on ...

Appetite for Deconstruction

The second song on the Burning Brides’ third album Hang Love is titled “San Diego.” The Philadelphia-born/L.A.-based neo-grunge trio played it last week at the Casbah. When the record was released last June, reviewers singled ...

Glossines with Benefits

" 'Well, let's have a benefit show for you!' -- that's what everybody was saying," relates Glossines singer-bassist Amber Everson. The native San Diegan needs surgery to remove a polyp from her vocal cords as ...

Sax Worker

When San Diego's Creedle suspended operations a decade ago, the quirky avant-rock-jazz band had streamlined down to a quartet. In 1996, the bass/drums/guitar/sax lineup released its third and final album, When the Wind Blows -- ...

Why It's Called a University

San Diego fans of international underground rock were excited for the December 5 Ché Café performance by Damo Suzuki. The Japanese singer is best known as vocalist for German prog group Can, which set the ...

Beach Club Blues

"'Canes in San Diego's Mission Beach is right on the boardwalk." So begins the SD entry in a Band of Horses "Road Log" story in the last issue of Filter magazine. "It's a fairly disgusting ...

All Business

L.A.-based Carla Bozulich has been a frequent visiting performer in San Diego over the years, singing in Ethyl Meatplow and later leading alt-country indie-rock outfit Geraldine Fibbers. She's been touring the world supporting her Evangelista ...

Defined by What We Hated

Michael Addis performed as a drummer 20 years ago in Playground Slap, a top original San Diego band of their day (they reunited a few months ago, sans Addis). More recently, the former SDSU film ...

Wild Guessing

Q: Who was asked to be Van Halen's lead singer before Sammy Hagar? If you know the answer, maybe you're already planning to do battle in Cover Me Badd's Music Trivia tonight at the Whistle ...

Beautiful Mess

"San Diego to Tijuana... Arguably the most infamous border town of the Western World. The last hedonist haven. Crossing from a city that thrives on consumerism to a city that survives on debauchery, we were ...

He Could Rap Forever

Local actor and musician Mark Gregg will be missed tomorrow at the San Diego Film Festival's area premiere of The Pacific and Eddy, his feature-length acting debut. Instead he will be remembered in a gathering ...

East Side, West

When vocalist-guitarist Amber Coffman takes the Casbah stage this weekend as a member of Brooklyn's art-pop band Dirty Projectors, it will mark a sort of homecoming. Before relocating to New York at the beginning of ...

Hymns Plummet

Which came first, lyric or melody? No need to pose that classic songwriter query to Glen Galloway about any tunes on his band Soul-Junk's new album. In the beginning were the words, to paraphrase John ...

Just Insane

Gary Hustwit, a presence in the San Diego music scene through the '80s and '90s, thanked the cheering full house at Philadelphia's Drexel University last month after a screening of his directorial debut, Helvetica. The ...

Those Wastrels from Hoover High...

The day after the release of Led Zeppelin's first album, the band made its S.D. debut at the Fox Theatre on January 13, 1969. Later that year, less than a week before Woodstock, the Brits ...

Time Has Told

Stephen Marley, son of reggae legend Bob Marley, turned 35 last Friday (yes, 4/20); last night, Stephen headlined at San Diego's House of Blues. He first performed on a downtown SD stage almost two decades ...

Loathsome Rockwrite Shuck

Veteran Portland garage-pop duo the Bugs includes S.D. native and Grossmont High School grad Michael Coumatos. On the band's new vinyl LP, Paul Haines and Coumatos alternate singer-guitarist and drummer duties on 18 stripped-down tunes ...

Shocked by Bad Tacos

"I moved to New York in 1999 and immediately was in shock by the fact that I couldn't find good Mexican food," says San Diego native and Pistolera front woman Sandra Velasquez. "How hard is ...

Shot Around

San Diego in the summer of 2005, The Pacific and Eddy premiered last weekend at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. Writer and director Matthew Nourse -- a SD native, 1998 alum of Torrey Pines ...

Six Feet of Dirt

The North Atlantic, an explosive math-rock trio from Michigan that formed at Kalamazoo College in 1999 (and migrated to SD within a year), offered this Gerald R. Ford obit on their MySpace bulletin: "...Ford is ...

Save Your Tears

After Rocket From the Crypt's final hometown gig on Halloween 2005, the Sultans became the last John Reis band left. Last Wednesday, news of the Sultans' "last show ever!" was included in a press release. ...

Tijuana-on-the-Schuylkill

Confusion is nothing new concerning the hometown of Robert Lopez, a.k.a. El Vez. Before starting his Mexican-American "Elvis translator" persona in the late '80s, Lopez co-fronted West Coast punk pioneers the Zeros in the mid-'70s ...

Of SoftLightes and Limelight

"Ah, NME and their hyperbole..." says a not ungrateful Kristian Dunn, bassist in the SoftLightes. The San Diego band (formerly known as the Incredible Moses Leroy) was reviewed in England's New Musical Express for their ...

If Not Gravel, What About the Sand?

After four decades and 20 albums, Tom Waits, a 1968 graduate of Chula Vista's Hilltop High, is arguably the most substantial music figure to emerge from the San Diego area. Ever since the Eagles made ...

Trumans Remains Undefeated

Back home in France after a West Coast tour, Trumans Water's Kevin Branstetter chuckles about a blurb anticipating the band's Casbah appearance last month. In an August 30 item, CityBeat's Scoop Stevens noted that "...the ...