L.A. RECORD CO-PRESENTS DON'T KNOCK THE ROCK FILM FESTIVAL! FULL SCHEDULE INSIDE!

July 2nd, 2009 | News

L.A. RECORD is proud to co-present Allison and Tiffany Anders’ annual Don’t Knock The Rock music documentary festival, which starts tonight and runs every Thursday at Cinefamily at 611 N. Fairfax Ave. in July and August. Get the complete schedule and musical line-up—plus clips of all the films!—below!

THUR., JULY 2 at 8 PM: Chicano Rock!: The Sounds of East Los Angeles

“Let’s take a trip down Whittier Boulevard!” chant Thee Midniters, in Jon Wilkman’s beautiful love letter to the soulful sounds of So Cal. Narrated by Edward James Olmos, this lively and inspiring film explores more than fifty years in the musical history of East Los Angeles, America’s largest Mexican-American community. For decades, generations of East L.A. artists created a unique musical voice, and in the process, proudly expressed their cultural identity, from ’40s pachuco swing to ’50s teen idol Ritchie Valens, ’60s garage rock and soul, to punk and beyond. Chicano Rock! features the timeless music of these eras, including Lalo Guerrero, Ritchie Valens, Cannibal and the Headhunters, Thee Midniters, El Chicano, Tierra, Los Lobos, Ozomatli, and Alice Velasquez (The Bags, Cholita, Las Tres). Jam-packed with rare footage, photos, artifacts, Chicano Rock! treats you to an exhilarating lowrider cruise that could only happen on the streets of Los Angeles. Author Gene Aguilera (“The Golden Age of Chicano Rock ‘n Roll”) will be on-hand to spin classic 45s, and we’ve also got a post-screening live set by a very special seminal L.A. punk band!

Dir. Jon Wilkman, 2008, digital presentation, 60 min.

Tickets – $12

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THUR., JULY 9 at 8 PM: B-MUSIC & DJ ANDY VOTEL PRESENT: Hungarian Rock Night

British DJ extraordinaire Andy Votel will be in person at the Cinefamily to spin tunes and to present what is both a remarkable achievement in Hungarian pop culture and Eastern European film, starring some of the leading lights of both Communist era New Wave cinema and the forward-thinking Hungarian rock scene. Szép lányok, ne sírjatok! (aka Don’t Cry, Pretty Girls) stars Jaroslava Schallerova (fresh from her leading role in Valerie And Her Week Of Wonders) alongside Hungarian rock goddess Sarolta Zalatnay and a cast of freak-rock non-actors plucked from the disgruntled state-governed Qualiton and Pepita record label rosters to make this underhanded tribute to the ‘silenced’ pop group Illes, in disguise as a working-class drama/rock festival liberation expose. Directed by Marta Mészáros (wife of Hungarian New Wave luminary Miklós Jancsó) and featuring heavy footage of bands like Metro, Syrius and Omega (who can be heard on the recently released “Well Hung” compilation on Finders Keepers records), this buried and previously untranslated film holds serious appeal to fans of both Polish and Czech Cinema, Mod culture, Youth culture and obscure 70’s rock music.

Dir. Marta Mészáros 1970, digital presentation, 90 min

Tickets – $10

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THUR., JULY 16 at 8 PM: America’s Lost Band: The Remains

Had these Boston bad boys stuck it out beyond their 1966 debut, we might today be calling them–and not the Stones–the World’s Greatest Rock N’ Roll band.” -Mark Kemp, Paste Magazine

They played The Ed Sullivan Show, were hand-picked by Paul McCartney to open for the Beatles, and then…gone. America’s Lost Band captures the essence of The Remains, one of the best of American rock bands you’ve never heard. The story follows guitarist Barry Tashian, keyboardist Billy Briggs, bassist Vern Miller and drummer Chip Damiani, the four young original members of The Remains, from their earliest beginnings to their all-too-early end, when they broke up on the brink of fame, right after opening for the Beatles’ last-ever tour in 1966. America’s Lost Band finds the heart of music that refuses to die, culminating in the band’s recent well-deserved rediscovery and reunion. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Michael Stich, producer Fred Cantor, Remains keyboardist Bill Briggs and Remains frontman Barry Tashian (who will also be on hand to sign copies of his book “Ticket To Ride”, as well as your Remains albums!), in addition to a live set by psych garage rockers The Living Sickness!

Dir. Michael Stich, 2008, HDCAM, 66 min.

Tickets – $12

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THUR., JULY 23 at 8 PM: It Came From Detroit

In a smashing, energetic presentation, It Came From Detroit lovingly puts on display the “Motor City”, home to an internationally renowned and influential garage rock scene. Starting with The Gories in the 1980s, the bands of the Detroit garage scene have been known for two things: an impeccable knowledge of rock history, and a raucous live show. As bands such as the White Stripes, The Von Bondies, and the Electric Six started to develop a following overseas, journalists everywhere started to hype Detroit as “the next Seattle”, and It Came From Detroit documents the evolution of this scene, from its humble underground beginnings to its ascension as a trend known the world over. And, perhaps most touchingly, the film deals as well with how the unexpected popularity of certain key bands impacts the scene’s small group of friends, as some are catapulted to global recognition, while others are barely known outside of Detroit’s crumbling confines. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director James R. Petix, plus a live set by special musical guests!

Dir. James R. Petix, 2008, digital presentation, 102 min.

Tickets – $12

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THUR., JULY 30 at 8 PM: Pardon Us For Living But The Graveyard Is Full

30+ years. 2000+ shows. No hits. No sleep. In 1976, a gang of kids from Queens stumbled upon some abandoned instruments in the basement of the house they were renting and ended up forming a band. Little did they realize that thirty years later, they’d still be struggling to play their music and pay the bills. The Fleshtones were an integral part of the ’70s NYC underground scene and, amazingly, having soldiered on as a paradox, simultaneously legendary and obscure: boasting a rabid worldwide fan base and a reputation as a white-hot live act, but barely able to keep a record label for two albums in a row and ignored in all histories of the scene they helped create. Stunning vintage footage, insight from Peter Buck (R.E.M.), Clem Burke (Blondie) and Handsome Dick Manitoba (The Dictators), and candid self-deprecating interviews with band members Peter Zaremba, Keith Streng, Bill Milhizer and Ken Fox add up to a thoroughly entertaining portrait of the real hardest-working garage band in show biz. The evening’s screening will be followed by a live set by special musical guests!

Dir. Geoffray Barbier, 2009, digital presentation, 65 min.

Tickets – $12

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SAT., AUG. 1: BMI Roundtable Panel: Music, in Film, TV and New Media ’09

Join us for an intimate discussion of the changing landscape for music rights and new media. Musicians can find out how to get their music into films, TV and new media, and filmmakers can learn how to clear the rights for music for their work. The afternoon’s event will be moderated by Michael Des Barres, and guests include Doreen Ringer-Ross (BMI), music supervisors Tracy McKnight (Julien Donkey-Boy, Human Nature, Murderball) and Howard Paar (The L-Word, Dogtown and Z-Boys, Ken Park), composer Jay Ferguson (“The Office”), DKTR founder/film director Allison Anders (Border Radio, Grace Of My Heart, Things Behind The Sun), and more!

Tickets – $7

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THUR., AUG. 6: Wesley Willis’s Joyrides and Haack…The King Of Techno

Despite impossible odds, self-proclaimed rock ‘n roll star and “Chicago City Artist” Wesley Willis became an underground rock icon, revered artist and hero to many before his untimely death in 2003. Through his force of personality, his drawing talents, his unique vocabulary and an incredibly focused and singular songwriting style, Wesley’s creativity attracted people from all walks of life, and helped him to overcome the daily torment of schizophrenia, a haunting condition which plagued him throughout his adult life. Directors Chris Bagley and Kim Shively spent five years on the road and at home with Willis (along withn his many family members, friends and collaborators) to create the definitive portrait of Wesley as prolific artist and musician, on his path from obscurity to fame–a journey which will leave you uplifted, tickled and adrenalized.

Bruce Haack was one of the most musically and lyrically inventive artists of the early electronic age, combining homemade analog synths, classical, country, pop and acid rock elements into one massive, heady stew. His craft evolved from his passion and creation of numerous kids’ records, and today his work has inspired the likes of world-renowned musicians such as Beck, the Beastie Boys and Mouse On Mars, proving he’s an almost-lost treasure ripe for rediscovery. Packed with warped visuals, wild music and far out stories, Haack follows the King of Techno as he drops in on “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” and golden-oldie game show host Garry Moore, playing his bizarre instruments such as the Peopleodian, a device played by touching peoples’ skin! Directed in true Haack spirit, for kids, adults and music fans alike, Philip Anagnos’ directorial debut will send you out humming “School For Robots” and scrambling for Haack’s records! Director Philip Anagnos will appear in person for a post-screening Q&A session!

Wesley Willis’s Joyrides  Dirs. Chris Bagley & Kim Shivley, 2008, DigiBeta, 78 min.

Haack: The King of Techno  Dir. Philip Anagnos, 2004, DigiBeta, 57 min.

Tickets – $10

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THUR., JULY 13 at 8 PM: I Need That Record!

I Need That Record! asks the simple question: why have over 3,000 independent record stores in the U.S. closed in the past decade? As much a cool history lesson on vinyl as a portrait of greedy record labels, media consolidation, homogenized radio, big box stores, e-commerce, shoddy “stars” pushed by big money and even the digital revolution, the film is, at its core, a loving tribute to the cherished nerdy record stores which for decades have nurtured our access to the music we all love. In addition to the exploration of its juicy premise, the film contains interviews with Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth), Ian MacKaye (Fugazi), Mike Watt (Minutemen), Lenny Kaye (Patti Smith Group), Chris Frantz (Talking Heads), Pat Carney (The Black Keys), composer Glenn Branca, authors Noam Chomsky and Legs McNeil, rock photographer Bob Gruen–and dozens of indie record stores across the U.S. of A.! The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Brendan Toller, a panel discussion (moderated by Michael Des Barres, featuring special guests) on the fate of the indie record store today, a Danny Benair Record Club listening party (bring a record to share if you want!), and a record swap on the Cinefamily outdoor patio!

Dir. Brendan Toller, 2008, digital presentation, 77 min.

Tickets – $10

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THUR., AUG. 20 at 8 PM: ON/OFF: Mark Stewart from The Pop Group to The Maffia

This one’s a must for all post-punk junkies! The name of singer/industrial hip-hop pioneer Mark Stewart may not be instantly familiar, but his influence is felt the world over. From his early days with confrontational post-punk pioneers The Pop Group to his myriad collaborations with the likes of Trent Reznor, Massive Attack and Primal Scream, Stewart has provided ghostly beats and haunting vocals for over thirty years, and shows no signs of stopping. German filmmaker Tøni Schifer, who followed Stewart around for three years, has crafted a detailed, intimate portrait of the artist, supplemented by interviews with Stewart himself, his Pop Group co-horts Dan Catsis, Gareth Sager and John Waddington, Keith Levine (P.I.L.), Janine Rainforth (Maximum Joy), Douglas Hart (The Jesus & Mary Chain), Fritz Catlin (23 Skidoo), Daniel Miller (Mute Records), Nick Cave, Mick Harvey, Massive Attack and many others, plus some terrific never-before-seen vintage performance footage. Plus, scenes of the wildly eccentric Stewart interacting with his mother are not to be missed! Straight from Berlin, director Tøni Schifer will be in attendance for a post-screening Q&A!

Dir: Tøni Schifer, 2009, DigiBeta, 90 min.

Tickets – $12

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SPECIAL SATURDAY SCREENING

SAT., AUG. 22 at 5 PM: Of All The Things

The most unique comeback story of the year. Dennis Lambert was one of the most successful and diverse songwriter/producers of the ’70s and ’80s, with hits like “Ain’t No Woman (Like The One I’ve Got)”, “Rhinestone Cowboy”, “Don’t Pull Your Love”, “Baby Come Back” and “Night Shift”. He had chart-toppers in almost every genre of music–at one point, four of his songs were simultaneously on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, a feat previously accomplished only by The Beatles. That was then. Today, he’s a 60-year-old family man selling real estate in Florida. But it turns out his obscure 1972 solo album is huge–in the Philippines. A Filipino concert promoter has been begging Dennis to tour for decades, and in 2007 he finally agreed. Of All The Things is a hilarious and touching pop/rock/country/R&B documentary that follows Dennis on his whirlwind tour, as he rediscovers his passion for music and thousands of fans he never knew he had. Some lives deserve an encore. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with Dennis Lambert, his documentarian/son Jody Lambert, and some very special guests!

Dir. Jody Lambert, 2008, HDCAM, 83 min.

Tickets – $10

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THUR., AUG. 27 at 8 PM: Night Flight tribute night

Before infomercials took over the late-night airwaves, overnight programming was a staid line-up of reruns, talk shows, and old movies. Throughout most of the ’80s however, there was one anarchic alternative—-Night Flight. Premiering on the fledgling USA Network on June 5, 1981–two months before MTV’s arrival—-Night Flight was a glorious amalgamation of music videos, short films, cartoons, interviews, concerts, and cult movies. For many viewers, it was a video primer to the counterculture of the Reagan era, featuring artists and films that at the time could not be seen anywhere else and for seven years, Night Flight was required viewing for stoners, punkers, headbangers, and insomniacs. Now, twenty years after the final episode was aired, the show’s producers have gone back into their video vaults and emerged with this best-of program that will bring tears of joy to fans’ sleep-deprived eyes, as well as a musical feature film picked from the Night Flight programming schedule archives! Night Flight creator Stuart Shapiro will appear in-person for a Q&A after the program!

Tickets – $10