Remembering a Peaceful Soul
Thursday, September 28, 2000
Piano Joe died last fall and the guests at Dorothy''s Place Hospitality Center and Kitchen in Salinas have sorely missed their friend''s presence and his music. Piano Joe was a homeless man who Dorothy''s Place administrator Edna Cheek calls "one of the most gifted pianists who ever lived." He was a longtime denizen of Dorothy''s, which is run by the Franciscan Workers of Junipero Serra. "He was a very gentle soul," Cheek says. "He gave great comfort to the guests of Dorothy''s Place when he would play his music."
As a tribute to Joe, who played everything from jazz to blues to ballads, the Franciscan workers have organized a musical benefit evening. Cheek says the event hopes to accomplish three things: to honor Joe and his love of music; to raise money for Dorothy''s Place, and to take a peaceful stand against violence in the community.
Piano Joe was bludgeoned to death, and to date, his murderer has not been apprehended. "He was a man of peace and he died such a violent death," says Cheek sadly. "He probably was killed for less than $20 in his pocket."
A lineup of local musicians, including Yvonne Crane, the Notre Dame Girls Ensemble, Victor de la Cruz, Charlene Johnson, A.J., Nina Hoffman Saavedra and Becky Nelson, have donated their time and talents to the cause, which takes place Wednesday, Oct. 4, 6pm at St. Paul''s Episcopal Church, corner of Pajaro and San Miguel streets, Salinas. There is no charge, but a voluntary donation is appreciated.
The Steinbeckista Social Club
The National Steinbeck Center''s fall film series has such an intriguing title it may be impossible to stay away. "Accordions, Electric Guitars and Techno-Cumbias" is a celebration of Chicano music in film, with the second installment on Oct. 4 focusing on the rich culture of Tex-Mex music.
The evening features two films: Chulas Fronteras, a documentary directed by Les Blank, explores the world of conjunto, a style of popular Mexican music. The film is a montage of interviews, live performances, historical images and recordings from the ''20s and ''30s. The second film, Del Mero Corazon (Straight From the Heart) is another Les Blank joint that casts its eye on "songs of love, passion and deceit."
The four-part series is one of the hottest bargains in town: Tickets are only $5 ($3 for members) and include popcorn and no-host beverages. Lively discussion follows each screening. Curtain time is 7pm, at the Steinbeck Center, One Main Street, Oldtown Salinas. For more information on the series, call 775-4730.
Get Up, Stand Up, Speak Out
On Oct. 3, CSUMB students and interested members of the public have a chance to hear Pulitzer Prize-nominated poet Minnie Bruce Pratt read her work. Pratt is a nationally known essayist and poet who has received the National Library Association''s Gay and Lesbian Book Award for Literature. The free reading is 7-9pm, in the University Center Ballroom on the CSUMB campus. Park for free in lot #29. Call 582-3889 for info or directions.
The Center for Photographic Art in Carmel has announced its 10th Annual Center Awards. This is an international photographic juried exhibition which is open to all photographic media. Forty artists will be selected for the December exhibition and the top three winners get cash awards. For a copy of the contest''s rules and fees call the CPA at 625-5181, or visit www.photography.org.