Thursday, September 08, 2005 | Upcoming music, visual arts and special events:


Today’s News. It wasn’t merely the character action in the opening five minutes of the original “Back to the Future” that made the film required viewing for us children of the ’80s. Marty McFly hurricaning a room with an electric guitar and hitching rides to high school on a skateboard was pretty slick, but what really stuck from the best opening credit sequence of all time was the soundtrack to all that adolescent recklessness: Huey Lewis & the News’ “The Power of Love.”

Sure, it was simple, corny and laden with those robotic synthesizer sounds that are so ironically hip nowadays. But all this modern electro-fetish is just cover for today’s rock casualties, who know they’ll never play guitar through a 1,000,000 watt amp or get around to writing dinosauric, jangle-happy rock songs as foot-tappable as Huey’s. If you still need convincing, consider that the News backed up Elvis Costello on the girl-fumbling nerd’s tearjerker “My Aim is True” – before the Attractions.

Perhaps we music critics ought to squirm recommending the pricey reunion-tour circuit. Perhaps five (or was it only three?) minutes of glory at the beginning of a humdrum Spielberg film is the wrong thing to remember Huey and his dudes for. But if you shell out $80 to catch this so-called “bar” band at a fancy casino in the hills, you probably don’t need this writer to tell you about the power of love. 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9, Viejas Outlet Center Park, 5000 Willows Road, Alpine, (619) 445-5400. $80. (IP)


The little sticker that could. Since his death in 1993, Andre the Giant is perhaps more well-known in the form of a black-and-white graphic sticker than as a WWF champion wrestler or bit-part actor (most famously playing the role of the gentle giant Fezzik in the cult-classic fairytale “The Princess Bride”).

Fifteen years ago, Los Angeles-based graphic artist (and former San Diegan) Shepard Fairey reduced Andre’s likeness to a simple, stencil-esque image that was then reproduced as small, square stickers. With the help of friends, Fairey began plastering the stickers on street signs and other public spots to (according to the artist’s manifesto) “stimulate curiosity and bring people to question both the sticker and their relationship with their surroundings.”

Andre’s blank stare, accompanied with the word “Obey,” has since taken on a life of its own, popping up all over cities around the globe, not just in sticker form, but also as huge posters pasted on building walls and billboards (and in more commercial forms as T-shirts, posters and skateboards).

Fairey once again returns to San Diego for a solo exhibition, “Visual Disobedience,” which opens Friday at downtown’s Voice 1156 Gallery. Not only will Fairey be present at the opening reception from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday, he’ll also be spinning records (along with local DJ Damon Bell) under his alias DJ Diabetic.

“Visual Disobedience” runs through Oct. 21 at Voice 1156 Gallery, 1156 Seventh Ave. in downtown. Info: (619) 235-6922 and

More works to contemplate:

– Kettner Nights. Twenty-four galleries and shops in and around Little Italy’s Art and Design District – many of which dot Kettner Boulevard – will stay open late Friday, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., for casual evening window shopping and browsing of locally-made home furnishings, fashions, accessories and jewelry. For a list of participating places, visit

– “Snapshot: From Box Brownies to Camera Phones.” Original black-and-white and color snapshots taken by amateur photographers from the 1920s to 1960s are on display, along with a live feed of images captured by camera phones, now through Sept. 18 at the San Diego Museum of Photographic Arts, 1649 El Prado in Balboa Park. Info: (619) 238-7559.

– Ray at Night. An eclectic, all-ages crowd descends on the one-block stretch of Ray Street in North Park to leisurely meander through participating galleries – viewing everything from paintings, ceramics and photography to blown glass, jewelry and organic art – as well as enjoy live music and light refreshments. Ray at Night occurs from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. every second Saturday of the month on Ray Street between University Avenue and North Park Way.


Films on the beach. Travel the world without ever leaving Imperial Beach this Friday and Saturday during the third annual Imperial Beach Film Festival. Short films, documentaries and features from Spain, Australia, Mexico, Argentina, Germany, Canada, England and the United States will be screened along with seminars and workshops topics ranging from screenplay writing to film production (led by filmmaker and author Andrea Richards) to movie critiquing (led by KPBS film critic Beth Accomando). For a complete schedule of events and ticket information, visit

Don new Threads. The Old Wonderbread Bakery gets a makeover Saturday, and you can, too. From 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., pick up original clothing and accessories (for both men and women) created by more than 100 designers hawking their wares at “Thread: Fashion and Lifestyle Show.” When you need a shopping break, catch a runway fashion show, view contemporary art, get a massage or relax in the martini lounge. Admission is $7 ($5 with online RSVP). The Old Wonderbread Bakery, 147 14th St. in downtown. Info:

Living in Raider Nation. Are the silver-and-black-clad Oakland Raiders fans really as intimidating as they appear? Local authors Jim Miller and Kelly Mayhew put themselves in the trenches – at home games, sports bars and tailgate parties during the 2003 season – to take an in-depth look at football’s most notorious legion of fans in their latest book, “Better to Reign in Hell: Inside the Raiders Fan Empire.” Celebrate the book’s release with a reading and signing at 7 p.m. Friday at DG Wills Books, 7461 Girard Ave., in La Jolla. Info: (858) 456-1800.


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