Letters to the Editor

From the week of December 26, 2002

Michael W. O'Beirne, boardmember
Lakewood Civic Association

Neighborhood botch: I have several comments about the article on the Lakewood/CCU issue. The leadership of the neighborhood and the vast majority of homeowners who have been involved have focused their attention and energy on the issues they have with the city and CCU, and not on individuals. The incidents reported have involved only a very few individuals in the neighborhood. It is unfortunate that a large focus of David Holthouse's article was on the anonymous letter, which was an isolated incident. The recipient of the letter has apparently had ongoing heated relationships with several of her neighbors.

Perhaps Holthouse should check Lakewood police reports and court proceedings to get the true facts about vandalism and assault that were reported from Diane Caoua's perspective only.

Shellie Baker
via the Internet

Straight From the Heart

Soulless survivors: Regarding "The Heart of Country," David Hill's profile of Dallas Wayne in the December 5 issue:

There will be nobody to listen to in another thirty years out of today's country crop. No Haggard, Jones, Nelson, Rodriguez or Tammy. Dallas Wayne is right, and Jim Reeves is turning in his grave. Hank Sr., Patsy Cline and Ray Price do not tour anymore. Madonna, Enrique Iglesias, Milli Vanilli and whoever are all Grammy winners. So much for Grammys and music in general. We gave them Smoky, Santana, Aretha, Janis and Marvin Gaye; in return we got Fat Boys, New Kids on the Block and Britney Spears. Music from the soul to music from the advertising media greed. Gracias, but no thanks.

Dallas, no man is a prophet in his own homeland -- but some of us hear your message.

Jesse Orona

All You Need Is Love

Lip service: Yo, Laura Bond. I read your November 21 Backwash. Visionary ensemble? Force on the good side? And...hugs instead of drugs? What happened to staring at the sound? Charlie Manson blues? Wayne screaming Goddammit?! Is this the Wayne I knew? Is there room in this hurting world for more than one visionary from Oklahoma? My name is Brother Love. Let me tell you a little story.

I was a pseudo-spiritual freshman at the University of Oklahoma in fall 1983 and began going to shows of underground music with bands like Tulsa's None of the Above, White Cross, DRI, The Dicks and the Flaming Lips. The Flaming Lips were part of a local music scene that included Norman's Defenestration, which had vocalist Todd Meade, who later went on to form the Chainsaw Kittens. Among this scene was a cast of characters the likes of which I do not believe I shall meet again in my lifetime. The rumor was that Lips bassist Mark Ivins was just another student living in the dorms when my friend's brother became his suitemate; at the end of the semester, Mark was wearing the white face paint you see him in on the back of the Flaming Lips' first album.

Those days felt disjointed to me at the time, like calling myself Brother Love in the Bible belt of Reagan's America. There was nothing delicate about the balance between good and evil then, and some of us enjoyed calling ourselves evil. If the Flaming Lips was a shitty bar band, at least it was one of ours. Some bands, like Defenestration (which means the act of going or putting something through a window), didn't survive. I always respected ones like the Lips, who I suspect stayed together because they continued to enjoy making music on their own terms. That was the founding principle behind punk, anyway.

The last time I saw them play in Oklahoma was when they opened for Sonic Youth in 1985. Then I saw the Lips here when they played a second stage at a Lollapalooza. But I never kept in touch with them. I saw Wayne at Twist & Shout, but I couldn't hang around to catch up on old times. The most recent picture of him, I didn't even recognize; I guess we're all getting older.

Well, I'm sure that there is much that I left out. Watching this new collection of fans, they seem to be responding to something about the Lips that's new to me and I am only now discovering. What it means, I will have to consult my scriptures. I will continue to watch them as best I can.

Brother Love
via the Internet

Join the Club

Fun on the run: Westword, I love your publication and read it religiously. I recently relocated back to Denver from the Minneapolis area; it's good to be home. I am a professional club DJ and have been spinning for over seven years now. When I left Denver, I left in part because the club scene here was almost nonexistent. At the time, we had Club America at the Tivoli and Rock Island, and the after-hours club Synergy had just opened. My, how things have changed: It seems that there are a host of great clubs here now.

My concern is that we need to keep this progress rolling. Let's put Denver on the map. Let's start putting local talent on the tables for the betterment of our great city. Let's continue to encourage the Denver music market to flourish through progression. Sure, national talent is great, but how many people are we missing in our rush to book "moneymakers"? It's about the music.

Your mag has always been liberal in introducing the new and covering the fun. Let's keep the fun alive.

Nate Banker, aka DJ Detonate

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