Sound Advice

The bored, the gothic, and the really flexible

Some of the most exciting shows I've seen in San Francisco have involved local artists expressing themselves in atypical ways. In such a vein, the "Bored Collective" is a nonliterary storytelling event that calls upon dance-music mavens to express themselves through words rather than beats. The salon, which occurs on the fourth Thursday of every month, has offered oral histories and personal perspectives on music, reality, clubs, and drug-addled nightlife from such luminaries as DJ Spooky, UFO!, Toph One, Charlotte the Baroness, and Camper English. Tonight's speakers include former URB Editor Tamara Palmer; RC Sharon, the woman for whom the Rave Called Sharon was named; New Native drummer the Lucky Cat; DJ Sea of True Intent Recordings; Eddie P from Blaktroniks; Alan Black from the Edinburgh Castle; and Amanda Nowinski of the Bay Guardian. Billie Sharp MCs and Jonah Sharp of Spacetime Continuum provides the background music for the "Bored Collective" on Thursday, Dec. 27, at 26 Mix (3024 Mission at 26th St.) at 10 p.m. Tickets are $5; call 826-7378.


Now is the time when the ghoulish family holidays have passed and the end of the Christian year draws near, and all good little goths should reflect upon what has been and gone. To that end, the Reverend Slick 1 Percenters proffers the "Olde Tyme Death Rock Gospel Revival" DJ night, exploring the dank, dark underbelly of music made between 1945 and the present. Playing everything from Elvis Presley and Leonard Cohen to the Velvet Underground and Sisters of Mercy, the Reverend sermonizes on the salvation of your soul through black leather and cocaine, while the lovely Amanda Ruin pays homage to film noir soundtracks and glamorous gothic tunes. The "Revival" is part of "That Thing," a massive collaboration between local goth DJs and promoters, which includes "Death Guild" DJs Melting Girl and Joe Radio, Fernando of "Assimilate" and "Shrine of Lilith," and Kit and Decay of "Midian." "That Thing" will be held on Friday, Dec. 28, at the DNA Lounge at 9 p.m. Tickets are $7; call 626-1409.


Did you ever imagine -- perhaps as a child or after watching the X-Files episode about the boneless Flukeman -- that someone or something was coming up through your toilet seat to grab your fully exposed and highly vulnerable posterior? If this irrational fear is your late-night albatross -- a reoccurring thought that causes you to break out in cold sweats -- I suggest you stay away from any show featuring Daniel Browning Smith. Smith, known in the wide world of freaks and feats as The Rubberboy, can easily push his 5-foot 8-inch frame through a standard toilet seat opening. He's also quite comfortable curled up in an 18-gallon box, which is, thankfully, a bit larger than your average toilet bowl.

Smith has made a name for himself by getting in and out of things that challenge levelheaded sagacity. By rotating his torso 180 degrees and dislocating his arms and hips, he can wiggle through tennis rackets and into locked straitjackets. In fact, Smith holds the Guinness World Record for the fastest time getting into a locked straitjacket (two minutes and eight seconds), making him the globe's leading "enterologist." Thankfully, this title leaves him little time for tormenting young ladies with weak constitutions and overactive imaginations.

Since 1998, when Smith ran away to join the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus, he has traveled with Zamora the Torture King's Touring Stunt Show, Singapore's Great World City, Ward Hall's World of Wonders, and Paul Osborne's Turn of the Century Midway. He's also made television appearances on Ripley's Believe It or Not, Penn & Teller's Sin City Spectacular, Bizarre World, The Roseanne Show, and Good Morning Singapore. Still, while Smith's extraordinary, natural-born flexibility has earned him fame beyond the wildest imaginings of his family and friends back in Meridian, Miss., there are those critics who dismiss his talents as artless and freakish. Thankfully, San Francisco revels in both, leaving little room for Cirque-slavering snobs and rhythmic sportive gymnastics pretensions. Here, fans delight in and encourage Rubberboy's down-home charm and unfettered freakishness. It's little wonder, then, that when Smith is not entertaining audiences around the world, he considers San Francisco home. There's certainly no better place to launch his new one-man comedy/contortion act "Box of Rubbers."Unconstrained by broadcasting regulations and family values, "Box of Rubbers" will no doubt contain guileless references to mono-fellatio and dual-action coitus, as well as the Rubberboy's usual array of exquisitely grotesque body manipulations and perhaps a musical number or two (Smith is reported to have a fondness for Michael Jackson).

As if the Rubberboy's dirty mind and divine elasticity weren't enough to entice, the very talented Brian Lease returns from his new home in New York City with the Fisherman's Trio, offering xylophone-heavy exotica to get you in the mood for Geoff Ellsworth's Pirates Need Birthday Presents Too, a one-man pirate musical drama about vicious, seafaring plunderers who attack unsuspecting Belgians and Eskimos because they are tired of having birthdays too close to Christmas. The Rubberboy performs on Saturday, Dec. 29, at the Odeon with Fisherman's Trio and Geoff Ellsworth opening at 10 p.m. Tickets are $8; call 695-2884.

 
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