Tag Archives: Albuquerque

Pro Wrestling in the 505

After two-years, pro-wrestling will be making a triumphant return to Albuquerque on December 6th. This professional entertainment for the family will feature star performers from the Southwest circuit, including eight locals from Albuquerque itself. This is just the first in many shows around the city by, Destiny Wrestling Organization at the Mckernan Sports and Entertainment Event Center at Five-Points and Bridge, in the south valley. The live experience is not something to be missed as tag-team titles are fought for.

After the long hiatus, Chavez Crespin Promotions is reigniting the spark of pro-wrestling at the local level. These live performances are risky, with original movements than what you see on WWE on TV. Go big is the theme of the shows here on the Southwest circuit. With more room for more styles, the live audience will witness new moves and combinations done with strength and agility. There will be Lucha Libre, American a technical style, Catch psychology wrestling, strong style strike orient.

The dedication and determination of these wrestlers are clear. In order to train for one of these performances, the wrestlers must first train on a plywood and a steel pole rig in the backyard of one of the top wrestlers. Josh Pain and Dexter have a strict training regiment designed to weed out the weak, and create true wrestling machines. This means that when it’s 109 degrees in Albuquerque, these wrestlers are roasting on the steel poles, or 30 degrees, they are freezing on the steel poles numerous days a week to learn how to put on a good show.

The DeathRage Cartel will be there trying to convert good guy Amsterdam to the dark side, while fighting for tag-team titles. Other featured performers to keep an eye on are Hobo Hank and Moshpit Mike. It’s time to get inform and get in on the action. Pick a side and heckle your favorite wrestler.

Come out and support your local wrestlers before they become superstars. There will be crowd interaction and good times had by all. Be amazed by the jumps, throws, and elbows flying in and outside of the ring. Tickets available at holdmyticket.com or come out on Monday nights to Back Alley Draft House open mic night and get them in person from Amsterdam himself. Support your local scene.

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Sarah Mowrey

Sarah Mowrey – Improv extraordinaire, stand-up comedian, social activist, all around renaissance woman and Albuquerque local. Mowrey is a recent graduate of UNM in University studies, She started with improv and sketch comedy there. Later moving into stand-up comedy and tackling social issues head on in her sets.

Mowrey, who is thinking about returning to UNM in the near future, is currently busying herself running Comedy Question Mark. It was founded in 2010 on the UNM campus, but now has become a weekly Friday night show at The Box in Downtown Albuquerque. 2010 is also the year that Mowrey began doing Improv and sketch comedy. It was 2011 before she tried stand-up. The difference between improv and stand-up? Mowrey explains, “With stand-up, you’re on stage alone, but with improv, you have a buddy – someone else to bounce ideas off of. So even if it’s stupid, the rule in improv is to go with it.” Sketch comedy is improv with a script. When asked to choose between the them, there is no choice. They are all very different and mind-expanding in their own ways.

On Wednesday nights, she co-hosts the open mic night at Broken Bottle Brewery on the west side of Albuquerque. Here you will get a chance to see her MCing skills and stand-up comedy. It’s a free show with some great microbrews to quench your thirst. Mowrey wants to reach out to women comics, in particular, since here, in Albuquerque, there are still so few comparatively. “Women’s voices need to be heard as much as the males,” explained Mowrey. It’s hard to be a female comic. Even today, they are expected to only tell certain kinds of jokes. “Any guy can stand up on stage, tell dick jokes, and get a laugh,” shares Mowrey. “But if a girl stands up and says vagina, then everyone gets uncomfortable.” Sarah has made it her mission to motivate women and get women’s humor out there. Women in comedy, like anywhere else, are scrappier and work hard at comedy. But, here in Albuquerque, guys in the scene are supportive of women, so all you ladies out there with a funny bone come out to one of the open mic nights popping up around town.

Mowrey uses her talents and charms in other outreach programs and benefits for the community. Equal rights for everyone is a big issue for her. It shouldn’t matter sex, color, or preference. She also donated her time to raise funds for people suffering in Ferguson, in the wake of a police shooting. “I’m dedicating my time to this cause, because what’s happening in Ferguson has been a huge violation of human rights,” expressed Mowrey. “Since I don’t have the resources to give out of my own pocket, I want to dedicate some time to help raise money.”

She’s not asking for much out of her dream of comedy. She wants to go far in stand-up, so she can be political and incite change in the world. If possible, she would like to be able pay her bills and donate time to help causes she believes in. She wants young comedians to come out and check out all the open mics in town. Get involved and let your voice be heard – changing the world one joke at a time.
Check out more at http://www.NMentertains.com

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Where’s Norma Now?

Where’s Norma Now? That is the question everyone in Albuquerque will soon be asking. Armed with nothing but two GoPro cameras, and some wicked imaginations, three local ladies, with a great crew, have created the latest hotness, “Where’s Norma Now?” Sheryl Brown, Terry Hicks, Nina Knapp are the screenwriting – directing – producing power team behind this show, starring Teresa Longo and Cheryl Hooks.

The idea? A life long desk jockey, Norma Esperanzo, is given a GoPro camera at her retirement party. With time on her hands, Norma, now retired and widowed, has to face the question so many do. What comes next?  Norma hopes to answer that question throughout the first season of the show, while learning just what it means to live a life of adventure.

The team of Sheryl, Terry, and Nina came about this idea when Nina got a GoPro camera for fun. The struggle to get it out of the box alone was enough to spark ideas and hours of banter between these funny ladies. With a mostly female film crew and a high action shooting style, “Where’s Norman Now?” is a comedy about coming of age the second time around. The ladies on Team Norma has started a grassroots movement using social media to bring this web show to life around the world. So, along with Norma learning her new life, the team behind this movie is learning, too.

Social media, GoPro Camera, and web shorts are just part of the learning curve for experienced filmmakers to overcome. Luckily for us, the team is taking us along on the journey with them. Check out http://www.Wheresnormanow.com and see what the new face of retirement looks like.

For more on What’s going on in New Mexico check out New Mexico Entertainment Magazine

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Vans Warped Tour Takes ABQ by Storm

Over night, Albuquerque population increased by a thousand people, rolling into town tucked away on tour buses with tinted windows. The small army set up their base camp just south of town, in front of Isleta Amphitheater. A black twisting path leads into the theater with open seating to six different stages. Tents lined the walkways and the grassy hill, as anxious patrons wait to clamor in the gates. Music, fashion, Buddhist, and non-profits collide in this all-day event. The masses arrive early to line up at the tent of their favorite band for the signing events that would be going on throughout the day. There is also plenty of shopping to be done in-between and at the band tents. Kids and adults alike burst through the gate scattering across the massive sprawl that is the Theater. Two Write on Her Arm is the first tent we make a pit stop at. This nonprofit operates solely off your donations to help people of any age who are contemplating suicide or other destructive behaviors. They work with connecting people to crisis prevention lines in the area and are actively trying to change the preconceptions of mental illness in this country. Heart Support, who has a booth further down the way, is also a non-profit who is reaching out to people and trying to help them through tough times. Both of these organizations provide people a safe place where they can speak with others who are going through the same trials. “It’s pretty awesome for us to be out here this year it’s our 20th birthday as well as Warped Tours 20th birthday. So we are all getting old together, it’s nice, it’s lovely. It’s a good vibe out here haven’t down the whole tour since 2004 so it’s good to be back.” (Jeff – Bowling for Soup). The wind begins to really pick up in Albuquerque, which is no surprise to the locals. The road crews manning the tents are hanging from them to keep them from blowing away, while making the tents shorter and shorter. The rain is coming, because it only rains in the desert during large outdoor concerts and Balloon Fiesta. “This is only the fourth day of Warped Tour, so I’m still trying to meet everybody, but it’s a great chance for us tour with our friends and with bands we normally wouldn’t go out with for a tour.” (Less Than Jake). Even with the storm threatening, people are still filing in through the gates of the park. There are signs taped to the black top telling you what band will come on what stage at what time. Food and drink vendors open their windows to dish out hot dogs and hamburgers. There is little shade to be had and no misters, but they are giving away free water in all corners of the theater to combat the heat of the day. “I started tour at 15. I finished high school on the road while touring.” (Nathan Young – Anberlin) Music blares from every corner of the theater now that the show is in full swing. Six stages – three running at a time with metal bands, punk bands, and DJ. There is a little something for everyone. A light rain falls for a few moments, but blows over quickly restoring sunshine. The rain has done nothing to dampen the spirit of the day. “We respect our fans and won’t change our sound. It is who we are and we are comfortable with that,” (Nick – Bayside). The Warped Tour has steadily grown in size over the last 20 years, adding more events and bands. Even on the hot asphalt, it was worth coming out and checking out the latest and greatest bands for a day long adventure. Check out more at New Mexico Entertainment Magazine

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ArtBar Albuquerque

Just south of Central Ave. on Gold Street sits ArtBar. A small unassuming place from the outside, ArtBar spacious layout and full stocked bar will make you glad you stopped in. It’s a members only club here in downtown Albuquerque. Before you let that turn you off there are some things you should know. The membership fee of $30 a year goes to a support art programs all over Albuquerque proper. They hope to expand that to helping communities in and area New Mexico. Once you’re a member you can bring up to ten guest with you at any time as long as you’re on site with them. It also gives you the ability to rent out ArtBar and hold your own art
openings or events on the premises.

The night I went, ArtBar was presenting comedians on a road trip from Seattle. The bartenders are friendly, attentive, and, most importantly, mix a great drink. The bar itself is a work art, from the hanging lights to the comfy couches set around the room. Aaron Kirby is on stage. Slipping around the curtain we fined seats on one of the leather couches by a window. I’m barely in my seat before I start laughing uncontrollably which continues until his set ends. Next up Derek Sheen. He truly looks like he is right out of Seattle circa 1992, with his flannel shirt and shorts. Microphone in hand e has the audience holding their sides within seconds. Now these guys are not for the light of heart or easily offended, but I imagine those people would know better the to go to comedy shows. Checkout ArtBar pay the membership fee it goes to a good cause and see what happening in the art world of downtown Albuquerque.

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Dum Dum Girls

The melodic beats of “Boys and Girls Club” off the album Too True by the Dum Dum Girls will transport you back to the 90s. A time when girl power was everything and black eyeliner was a must, Sub Pop recorders deliver this band to us. Many of you who are familiar with classic acts, like Nirvana, know that this label only chooses the grungiest, most melon collie bands to dispense to the masses, and the Dum Dum Girls deliver beautifully. The haunting vocals of singer/ song writer Dee Dee Penny (aka Kristin Welchez), induce a trance like state some where between euphoria and wondering where it all went wrong.

The new album Too True follows the bands Only in Dreams LP from 2011 and the End of Daze EP in 2012. The End of Daze EP received best in music from Pitchfork, and the single “Lord Knows” received best new track the same year from Pitchfork. Pitchfork host two major music festivals a year one in Chicago Il and the other in Paris France. They also have topped the list with their singles on CMJ.com. For those in the know, CMJ connects music fans with new music and offers digital discovery services. The band’s original heartache and lo-fi style has given way to a stronger more polished vibe in the new album. If you have been looking for a new band that doesn’t sound like everyone else out there on the pop music station, I suggest you strap on your doc martens and play the record loud. If your neighbors aren’t banging, then you not doing it right.

With sold out shows across the nation, Dum Dum Girls are attacking quite a following. They will be playing locally here at Sister on March 10th. Luckily for us in the Land of Enchantment there are still tickets available. Visit http://holdmyticket.com/event/153125 to buy your tickets for the show.
Check out more at: www.NMEntertains.com

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Behind the scene with Janessa

“Meet New Mexico’s own hair designer to the stars, Janessa Bouldin. Born and raised right here in Albuquerque, Janessa has been styling hair locally for over 10 years, when she landed her first Hollywood job on Love Ranch as a nail tech, soon followed by a hair design gig on Crash. “I had no idea what I was getting into when I first signed on to film set,” said Bouldin. “But, it’s been wild ride.” It is a close knit little community to break into when you’re first starting out. The hours can be long and demanding. The locations can be down the street or across the state from day to day. The people behind the cameras need to know that they can rely on you when your in the middle of nowhere trying to get a scene done.
Janessa Bouldin: Hair Designer

Being a singled mother of three young children, Bouldin is grateful for the opportunity working on set has provided her and her children. “The film industry has given me the chance to hone and prefect my skills without having to relocate my family.” Her children are supportive of her career and are looking to the film industry for careers of their own.

Janessa has worked on all kinds of movie and televisions shows in the last few years, each with their own challenges. The smaller indie movie sets such as Blaze you out shot in Espanola NM gave her a chance to really stretch her creative muscles. She handled more work and more responsibility. “Pushing my limits is a great experience even on the days it was difficult.” On larger movies sets such as The Avengers there are new and different pressures to work coordinating so many people to be ready for each scene. No matter what is in production you are guaranteed to have some great moments and gain knew insights.

“When it comes to getting star struck, I have my moments, but the key is to remain professional at all times.” Treating everyone on set in the same caring and respectful way will instill confidence in your work. The more confidence people have in your work the more work you will get. Janessa credits her family and her mother for instilling these ideas into her at a very young age. She plans to continue on the movie sets for years to come whiling encouraging her children to follow their dreams and use their artist skills.

Without the opportunities bought into town by the film industry Janessa and many others working in that field wouldn’t be able to provide for the families the way they are now. It’s an industry that is sure to grow and improve the lives of Native New Mexicans across the state.
checkout more at: http://www.NMEntertains.com

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Comedy night at Sandia Bowl

People will tell you that Albuquerque lacks a lot of things that other cities have and it’s true, but Sandia Bowl is stepping in to fill one of those needs. They are hosting a comedy night right here in town, every other Saturday night. Walking in the staff was great possibly a bit over whelmed. The small bar in Sandia Bowl filled up quickly for the comedy night featuring numerous local comedians and a first time Host.

Everybody was funny but if your easily offended or have tender ears stay out in the bowling area. Offensive subject matter, cuss words, and the possibility of being the butt of the joke were served up on the menu along with cold beer and drinks. The only thing missing was the stench of cigarette smoke hanging in the air. Come to think of it I really didn’t miss that part at all. The comedians were given a short amount of time to impress the crowd and they al lived up to the challenge. Even when the jokes were slow or the timing was off a recovery was always made. This was a promising start to many humorous Saturdays to come.

Checkout more at http://www.NMEntertains.com

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Inside Ozomatli

Ozomatli maybe be a local Los Angeles band that has been around for eighteen years and counting, but they are adopted sons of New Mexico. They are here this weekend to perform at the La Cosecha Dual Language Conference, a fundraiser for dual language education here in New Mexico. Citizens of the world, this seven-member band has a wide variety of musical styles and fusions including jazz, hip-hop, and salsa, to name just a few. Some of their fans love them for their political activism while others love them for their high-energy party-loving live performances. Whatever the reason you’re drawn to this band, they will give it their all to wow the crowd.

Each member of the band brings with them a different background and up-bringing from the same city. One thing is for sure they are no longer just a band or just friends, they are a family. As a family they strive to give back to the communities that have supported them. In Los Angeles, the Mayor has given them their own day, April 23rd (Ozomatli Day), in recognition of their efforts.  The band says it is important to them to encourage music and art in the schools so that is what they use their day hours to do. “Too often art and music are the first programs to be cut from the budget. All classes are important but unlike math that has a finite answer to a question, art and music force people to think out of the box. Future problem-solvers of the world will benefit from these classes. Exercising the creative muscle of your brain doing art and music teaches you to think for yourself.” Asdru Sierra

The band is proud of the fusion of musical styles in their music. They believe that music can break down cultural walls and biases.  Everyone on the planet relates to the world in different ways with different jobs to do. The band sees themselves as caretakers of the world. They bring people who might not otherwise have anything in common together for a good experience. They believe everything is a combination of other things — rock ‘n roll came to life by combining blues and jazz. Taking the idea further, the band is constantly striving to add new variety to their sound. “It can be the hardest part of making music they way we do, learning new styles and playing the sound with integrity. It is also the part that keeps it fun.”  Raul Pacheco

One of Ozomatli’s political messages is that everyone needs to learn different languages in this country. That is why they are here in New Mexico for La Cosecha. They are contributing their time and money to make scholarships available to New Mexico children for learning multiple languages.  After extensive touring outside the United States, it became clear to them that if our children want to stand a chance in the global market then they need to be bilingual. “Mandarin is the most spoken language in the world”, Asdru Sierra notes.  They aren’t insisting what language you choose to learn but the time of a single language to unify the nation is over. Back two hundred years ago, it made sense to insist on a single language, but the times have changed and the global economy insists on evolution of thought when approaching the world. Many of the members are bilingual and say that in many ways knowing both Spanish and English has been a large contributor to their success in the past eighteen years.

Being citizens of the world has gotten them named Cultural Ambassadors to the U.S. State Department. Luckily for these busy guys, they were already going all over the world reaching out to many different kinds of people with their music. “Life cannot be heavy or a party all the time and our music reflects that”. Ulises Bella  From helping grass roots political movements in Los Angeles gain momentum to cheering up a single listener, the band’s versatile music and positive lyrics are creating change on a national and global level. They have performed twice for President Obama at the White House and have joined political causes and rallies from here to Africa.

No matter how busy their touring schedule is, the band always manages to make a visit or three to New Mexico every year.  When asked what ties they have to our state, the answer is simple: “Green chile.”  When they were just starting out as a band they made a strong connection with the Chicano community here in New Mexico and up in Colorado. Grateful for the support of these adopted communities the bands makes time to give back and come through town often. Constant traveling and seeing how different people live in different places helps to keep the band motivated and inspired to do what they do best – share the inspiration.

There are no plans as of yet for how the band will celebrate turning twenty but they are certain they will be throwing a party. When asked if it will be on Ozomatli Day, there were shoulder shrugs all around. They suggest if you live outside Los Angeles and want to celebrate April 23, “buy a musician a meal. They are starving for the art.” On a more serious note, they recommend, “keep taking stands on issues you believe — the world is counting on it.”  Whatever bought your attention to Ozomatli, know they will keep changing growing and giving you more of what you love.

Checkout more at NM Entertains

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Meet Comedian Stephen Smith

On a chilly Saturday night in Albuquerque, I head out to a comedy show. Being that Albuquerque’s only comedy club closed years ago, I’m not sure what to expect. Will there be nice tables and drink minimums or smoke filled rooms? I find when I get there a small bar in the front of Sandia Bowl. The room is dimly lit and should be smoke filled, but it isn’t. In the far corner from the bar, there is a single spotlight shining on a corner with a small PA system. Tonight, there will be a number of comedians preforming tonight. My interest is in the headliner, Stephen “Smitty” Smith.

An ex-air force man, Stephen began his career in comedy entertaining his friends and co-workers in Iraq. After a long difficult deployment to the middle-east, Stephen returned to New Mexico without giving comedy another thought. Luckily, his wife at the time had given it another thought and signed him up for a comedy competition here in Albuquerque. With no idea that he was headed to a competition, Stephen took his first baby steps into professional comedy.

Coming in third was a boost to the comedian fighting his way out. Stephen credits the close-knit comedy community in being so welcoming and helpful to him in the beginning. In his first performance, two of the seasoned comedians took him out for a late night dinner and gave him a laundry list of open mic nights and hints for making it in comedy. This turned out to be the second best advice that Stephen had received in his life so far.

Growing up in Riverdale, Georgia, Stephen raised his younger brother and sister while he was in high school. The responsibility kept the young man on the straight and narrow, until he moved out on his own. He adopted a partying lifestyle soon after getting out into the real world. Trouble followed him around, until a police officer told him, “Get the hell out of Georgia or you will spend the rest of your life in jail.” Stephen took the suggestion to heart. Being a broke teenage with no prospect for college at the time, he joined the Air Force, where he was sent off to New Mexico to start a new period of his life.

Like the lives of many stand-up comics before him, Stephen’s life was full of ups and downs. From PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), from going to war in Iraq, to his marriage dissolving due to issue resulting from his condition. During this time, he was going it alone, trying to control his symptoms. In the end, he ended up leaving the Air Force, being jobless and almost homeless. He got help for his PTSD and decided he would go full force into the world of stand-up comedy.

Stephen has been headlining all over town with his eye on The Stage, which has introduced a Thursday Comedy Night at Santa Ana Star Casino. He is also planning a Southwest comedy tour with a few of his close friends in the industry for the summer. When asked what he would say to young talent starting out, he has two pieces of advice.

“First own your jokes,” he says. “No matter how rude or crude or proper. Own, believe, and hang on to it, even if it bombs the first second or third time you deliver it. Keep it written down. You never know when it will work with your crowd. Second, hone your skill at open MIC nights. Here in Albuquerque, you can find one at Nexus Brewery on Tuesday nights at 7:30 or Broken Bottle Brewery on the Westside on Wednesday nights at 7:30. You will see new and seasoned comics alike working on their acts, get to know the community they are a great source of inspiration.”!

Check out more at http://www.NMEntertains.com

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