A peek at The New Art Salon: Arte del Pueblo on view at MCASB through July 28. | Photo: Ingrid Bostrom

This edition of ON Culture was originally emailed to subscribers on July 19, 2024. To receive Leslie Dinaberg’s arts newsletter in your inbox on Fridays, sign up at independent.com/newsletters.


ON the Walls

More than 150 artists answered the call for MCASB’s current exhibition, The New Art Salon: Arte del Pueblo! The astounding variety of work is on view at the Museum upstairs at Paseo Nuevo through July 28, and our fabulous photographer Ingrid Bostrom (also a proud MCASB Board Member) was on hand to photograph last weekend’s opening party fun — check out the pics at Independent.com — which also marked the debut of the organization’s new Co-Executive Directors: Dalia Garcia (who’s been working with MCASB and was promoted), and Fabián Leyva-Barragán, who was previously working with Charlie Wylie at Santa Barbara Museum of Art in photo and new media. An exciting, young, vibrant, and inclusive new era of art awaits! See mcasantabarbara.org for more info.

“The Western Oak at the San Marcos Foothills” by Julia Laraway | Photo: Courtesy

I’ve always been fascinated by textile artistry, and the California Nature Art Museum’s summer exhibition — California, Quilted: Wild in the Oak Woodland — on view from July 14 to January 13 — is a beautiful display of new and recent works by textile artist Julia Laraway. A variety of creatures — from butterflies to bullfrogs to bobcats and more — inspire Laraway’s colorful creations. As she stated, “Sitting at my sewing machine, I hope to capture the wonder that these creatures inspire within me. They are our fellow travelers in life, and they share their home with all of us, often to their detriment.” I’m looking forward to checking that one out soon. The opening reception is Sunday, July 14, from 3-5 p.m. See calnatureartmuseum.org for more info.

ON the (Small) Screen

‘Rockbottom’ | Photo: Courtesy

The 80s (my high school and college era) are having a moment and — once again — it’s so much fun. Last weekend’s Totally Tubular Festival at the Bowl was such a blast (read my review at Independent.com and my interview with Tom Bailey of the Thompson Twins here) that, almost immediately afterward, we bought tickets for the Lost 80s Live show on August 30 at Vina Robles Amphitheater in Paso Robles. Featuring a stellar lineup that includes: A Flock of Seagulls, Wang Chung, The English Beat, Missing Persons, The Vapors, Stacey Q, The Escape Club, Musical Youth, Animotion, and Dramarama, there are still a few tickets available here. Meanwhile, I’ve got an 80s music movie cued up on Amazon this week, Rockbottom,  starring Tom Everett Scott from That Thing You Do, in the story of a failed 80s hair metal band. It also co-stars Jon Bon Jovi’s son Jake Bongiovi in his film debut. View the trailer here, and pass the Bartles and Jaymes.

ON the Page

Jenny Boyd | Photo: Lucy Fleetwood

As a young fashion model with musician Mick Fleetwood as her boyfriend and Beatle George Harrison as her brother-in-law, Jenny Boyd found herself immersed in the pop culture of the Swinging 60s. Now an author and part-time Ojai resident, Boyd will be at Chaucer’s on July 18 at 6 p.m. for a book talk and signing of her latest book Icons of Rock: In Their Own Words, which discusses the creative process with a stellar list of musicians, including George Harrison, Ringo Starr, Joni Mitchell, Eric Clapton, Don Henley, Tony Williams, Keith Richards, Buddy Guy, B.B. King, and Graham Nash among others.

By the time this reaches your inbox, the Independent’s new column — “Mom Brain” by Shannon Kelley — will have already debuted in print. Longtime readers will remember Shannon’s name from the pages of the Indy and her particularly memorable “Peeps” social column, taking us behind the scenes of all the fun parties and happenings around town. In addition to “Mom Brain,” she also has a book blog on substack, “Reading Women,” which I highly recommend. Check it out here



ON the Stage

Mark your calendars for a free show at the Lobero on August 10, with Big Bad VooDoo Daddy and Ozomatli. | Photo: Courtesy

Another free community block party is coming our way in front of the Lobero Theatre. Big Bad VooDoo Daddy and Ozomatli will be playing on Saturday, August 10, in a special celebration of the building’s 2024 centennial. Also making his way back to the theater in August is Chubby Checker, the fantastic headliner at last year’s free Lobero block party. This time it’ll be Chubby Checker and The Wildcats playing on August 31, in a benefit show for the Daniel Bryant Youth and Family Center. See lobero.org for the scoop on all these shows and more, including the return of Toad the Wet Sprocket on August 29, Christopher Cross on August 28, ALO and Donavon Frankenreiter on July 24, and an all-star lineup for “OUR HOUSE: The Music of CSNY” on July 10.

Anderson .Paak | Photo: Israel Ramos

Announcements for new shows at the Bowl continue to trickle in, including Anderson .Paak and The Free Nationals on September 26. Tickets are now on sale for that one, as well as for Bert Kreischer (7/20), Ziggy Marley (7/21), the Santa Barbara Mariachi Festival (8/3), Jon Batiste (8/9), Rebelution (8/14-15), Chelsea Handler (who performs on 8/17 and who I had a great time interviewing last week, stay tuned for the story), Kings of Leon (8/26), and Lauren Daigle (8/28). That just takes us through August, with way more to come. See sbbowl.com/concerts for the complete, and still evolving, lineup of shows.    

Anuhea performs at SOhO on July 20. | Photo: Courtesy

Can’t get to Hawai’i this summer? SOhO brings a little bit of the aloha spirit to Santa Barbara on July 20, when Anuheake’alaokalokelani, also known as Anuhea, brings her singular blend of Reggae, Pop, R&B, and humor to town. Check out her “Spam Musubi Song” here for a taste of what the Hawai’is Female Artist of the Year in 2019 is bringing to the stage. See sohosb.com for info.

ON the (Big) Screen

Dennis Quaid as Ronald Reagan | Photo: Rob Batzdorff

Dennis Quaid does an eerily good embodiment of one of Santa Barbara’s most famous part-time residents, Ronald Reagan, in the film Reagan, set to debut on August 30. Penelope Ann Miller is Nancy Regan in the movie, which is told through the voice of Viktor Petrovich, a former KGB agent whose life becomes inextricably linked with Ronald Reagan’s when Reagan first catches the Soviets’ attention as an actor in Hollywood. Check out the trailer here.

Looking for some family fun out of the sun? Metropolitan Theatres has brought back their popular Metro Summer Kids Movies, which run through August 8, at Camino Real Cinemas in Goleta. Tickets are just $2 with a new film every week at 10 a.m. on Thursday mornings. The series includes: 7/11: The Angry Birds Movie; 7/18: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs; 7/25: Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse; 8/1: Despicable Me 2; and 8/8: The Secret Life of Pets. For more information visit MetroTheatres.com.

Our favorite Courthouse outdoor film series from UCSB Arts & Lectures is back, starting the “Sun, Surf, and Cinema” series out tonight (July 5) with Jaws — see our story here — and don’t forget to pack your #sharkuterie picnic (I hear prizes are involved).

NatureTrack Film Festival has teamed up with the California State Parks to present a free summer film series of its own, starting July 6, at El Capitan State Campground Amphitheater. First up is the documentary film The Beaver Believers, which you can read about here.

‘Steal Big, Steal Little’ has a special screening at the Granada on July 20 | Photo: Courtesy

The Granada Theatre also has a cool film series to honor its centennial year, kicking off with Steal Big, Steal Little on July 20. Filmed in town (and set in Santa Barbara) with star Andy Garcia and directed by renowned filmmaker and Santa Barbara resident Andy Davis, both Andy’s will be on hand for what’s sure to be a lively conversation after the screening. Keep an eye out for Joe Woodard’s story and click here for tickets (just $20.24 for the anniversary).  

ON the Calendar

Conor Hanick | Photo: Timothy Teague

Music Academy of the West’s summer lineup of shows is so impressive. Joe Woodard’s been covering most of the events for us (here’s his intro to the Academy Festival Orchestra) and one of the highlights coming on Saturday, July 13, to Hahn Hall is the recently added Philip Glass: The Complete Piano Études, featuring Conor Hanick and Timo Andres and the solo piano fellows in a rare tribute to all 20 études in Glass’ densely kaleidoscopic collection. Click here for details.

For a complete calendar of events this week and beyond, visit independent.com/events/.

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