Letters to the Editor

From the week of April 1, 2004

The article was a very accurate portrayal of the cab business in Denver right now. For example, on March 16, there were only 2,927 dispatched calls and over 380 cabs logged in that day -- an average of eight calls per cab for a 24-hour period.

Matt Dalbey
via the Internet

The Artbeat of the Matter

Power to the people: I want to thank you for Michael Paglia's March 18 Artbeat note regarding Roger Beltrami. While newspaper accounts portrayed him as a "loudmouth" activist for AIDS, we at EDGE found him to be a sensitive, introspective man who quietly gave us the power to fight our own demons. He was and is my idol.

Susan Berkley

If You Can't Say Something Nice...

Raising the bar: Dave Herrera, thank you so much for mocking the crappy local bar bands in this town in the March 18 issue. If you continue Bar Band of the Week, I would consider it as valuable as "Well Hung at Dawn," Chapelle, Pitchforkmedia, Jason Heller and John Stewart.

John Goldar

Local vocals: For the 29 years I have played music in Denver, it has always seemed like there were incredible musicians here making incredible music, but the music scene always seemed kind of splintered. It feels like the potential exists here to become a major music market like Portland or Austin, but for some reason, it just hasn't come together. Westword is in a position of power to facilitate the growth of the local music scene. But I feel like Michael Roberts's March 18 review of Waiting For, the new CD by Bop Skizzum, contributes to the divisiveness of Denver rather than being a creative force.

I don't know Roberts. Perhaps he has recorded his own CD. Perhaps he knows how many hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars it takes. Perhaps he knows the joy of feeling the Creator move within. Perhaps he knows just how hard it is to bare your heart and soul to an audience and to question your wisdom in doing so. Perhaps he has gone through deep self-doubt and asked himself why in the world he is going to such great expense and effort if no one cares. What makes it all worthwhile is knowing that you have raised the level of consciousness in the world; you have given people greater connection to their inner selves; you have helped people have fun, and that people care. May I suggest Roberts pursue these qualities in his own writing?

It is a truly primitive society that chooses to spend billions of dollars on war and death and destruction but forces creative artists to expend most of their energy on their "day gig." They can't afford to just do music, and the world is a poorer place for it. I myself think Waiting For rocks. I feel honored to call those guys friends and to have performed with them. They are truly bright lights on the local scene. And believe me, they bust their asses for Denver. Most people would be appalled to know how many hours musicians rehearse and prepare for a gig and how little money they make and how many CDs they must sell to recoup their investment.

So I'm asking reviewers to be sensitive to their position as a part of the creative force in this great city. You can facilitate an artist's chances of making a living, or you can be an impediment. You can help Denver become a great music market, or you can keep it splintered.

Clay Kirkland

Now Showing

Run for his life: Regarding Bill Gallo's "Jingo Jangle," in the March 4 issue:

To say that Hidalgo is even loosely based on a true story is giving it far too much credit. It is a total fabrication. Frank Hopkins was never a member of Buffalo Bill's Wild West, he never rode in a long-distance race, and basically, he did little that his autobiography (on which the movie is based) claims he did. Are there some other parallels here between Frank Hopkins and George W. Bush?

Steve Friesen

Seeing is believing: Just read Melissa Levine's insightful and poignant review of The Same River Twice, "Because We Could," in the March 4 issue. As a review of a good film should, it made me determined to see the thing.

I read Westword in order to catch the reviews of Bill Gallo, the nonpareil, but from now on, I will look for Levine's, too.

Dick Conway
Port Townsend, Washington

A mind is a terrible thing to waste: This is just a note to express my appreciation for your "Short Takes" on movies. My husband and I enjoy a good film nearly weekly. We didn't have a copy of Westword last night when I read the reviews and picked out a four-star film. After our mind-destroying experience at the Mayan, we have pledged to forgo sampling any film that has not been reviewed by your newspaper on risk of deep regret that we didn't stay home.

Your movie reviews are excellent, and I agree with your reviewers.

Betty C. Shuttleworth
via the Internet

Cruise Control
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