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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Feb. 16, 1999)
(FROM LEFT) Little Slim swings his jacket around as rhythm guitarist, Joe Manthey, introduces him as the lead singer of the Back Alley Blues Band. Ryan
Larson, drummer, and Jeff Boehmer set the melody of “Shame” at the Zoo Bar in downtown Lincoln on Feb. 11.
Zoo Bar and Magic Slim birth sons and blues machine
By Daniel Luedert
The world spins from the steps of
The first lessons of youth come
from parents: to walk, to talk and even to
Sometimes what a child learns is
that the world can be a better place, and
sometimes he learns the blues.
Sometimes it’s both.
“He's going to change things,” said
Joe Manthey, a guitarist and friend of
Shawn Holt, also known as Little Slim,
of Little Slim and the Back Alley Blues
Manthey said this before the Back
Alley Blues Band took the stage in the
small club with a long history in
Lincoln, The Zoo Bar, on a cool
Thursday evening, Feb. 11.
The Zoo Bar drew two of the mem
bers of Little Slim and the Back Alley
Blues Band together as children in the
early '80s. //
Little Slim, **
son of blues man
came to Zoo Bar
at the age of 7 and
met Larry’s son,
also 7.“His family
would stay for a
couple oi weeks,
Boehmer remembers. “(Little Slim)
grew up where there were guards at the
park. Here, in Lincoln, it was a different
world where I grew up.”
As the light from the bar falls over
the sound board, Boehmer and Little
Slim talk about growing up around the
Lincoln blues scene.
There is no quiet table in the Zoo;
the music is what presides here, making
it a challenge to catch the words of the
Little Slim had trouble with the
schedule of Morris Holt, a.k.a. Dad,
a.k.a. Magic Slim, when he was young.
As he grew older he realized his father
had a job, but not an ordinary 9-to-5, he
While Little Slim was growing up in
Chicago, Magic Slim toured the local
blues circuit frequently, spending
stretches of time away from his home
and son. Meanwhile, Boehmer was
soaking in the emerging Lincoln blues
culture and picked up the guitar at the
age of 14.
By 16, he was teaching Manthey,
who now plays rhythm guitar
in the band.
Talk drifts to Manthey
and drummer Ryan Larson.
Larson began to take lessons
under jazz musician Jim
Miller at about the same time.
that Larson was “enthused by
the music; (Larson) was
always excited about play
Boehmer gets up with
Little Slim to adjust the amplifiers -
gifts from their fathers. Larson and
Manthey continue to talk of playing
together in high school.
It was a rich learning experience for
them - it was where they learned to play
About five years ago, Little Slim
moved to Lincoln. He preferred rap at
the time, but “after listening to us play
(in high school), he got into it,”
Please see BLUES on 10
“Blues is so much of a feeling,
when you know the people
you re playing with”
Little Slim and the Back Alley Blues Band guitarist
’20s film gets avant-garde spin
■ Local improvisational
group, Howlooseanation, re-cre
ates a black-and-white classic.
By Diane Broderick
Dr. Frankenstein gave life to the mon
ster, a magic fairy animated Pinocchio and
the Rabbi of Prague enlivened the Golem.
Although not as exposed in popular
culture, "Der Golem," a 1920s German
expressionist film, delivers a familiar
Friday and Saturday, Lincoln perfor
mance quartet Howlooseanation will give
a presentation of a special cut of "Der
Golem” - which uses elaborate, abstract
sets and stark lighting effects - with
accompanying improvisational and avant
garde music and dancers.
“Der Golem” recounts a famous
Jewish folk tale of the 16th century. The
Golem, an artificial man of clay, is
brought to life by a rabbi to protect the
Jews from exile.
As so often happens with creatures
artificially brought to life, chaos ensues,
and the Golem grows out of control and
must be destroyed.
Fred Mausolf, an original member of
Howlooseanation, said the quartet strives
to produce avant-garde projects that incor
porate nontraditional elements.
In 1997, the group composed abstract
music for NETV’s documentary on the
Torn Notebook sculpture on campus.
Howlooseanation also recreated Weldon
Kees'jazz music at the Sheldon Memorial
Art Gallery during a tribute to the
“Der Golem 1999" works in an unusu
al bent by featuring dancers throughout
the more than hour-long production.
“They’ll be in about 90 percent of the
show." Mausolf said. “You will see the
movie, and you will see them at the same
Four dancers will be under blacklights
and painted in fluorescent paint, both to
contrast to the black-and-white film and
so they will be visible in the dark.
They will be enacting their own plot,
parallel to the movie's, as they dance
alongside the screen showing the film.
“The dancers symbolize body parts at
first,” Mausolf said. “The music will be
channeled to help them animate, and the
body parts will come together.”
UNL graduate student Rachel Perry
will play the figure who brings life to the
others, and the three other dancers, Jodi
Philips, Keri Wagner and Kimberly
Schroeder. together play the monster char
“It's a variation on the theme,” Perry
Who: “Der Golem 1999”
Where: Wagon Train Project, 504 S.
When: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Cost: $8, S5 for students
The Skinny: Classic German
Expressionism matched with glow-in-the
said. “It doesn't directly follow the story
of the movie, but it has the same ele
The dance will be completely lmprovi
sational, Perry said, but it has to be a spe
“We want to make sure of that - so
we’re not still dancing when the film is
over,” she said.
Once the body is formed, their “cre
ator” will control the three dancers and
make them slaves until, ultimately, they
Howlooseanation members, including
Mausolf, Craig Imig, Mark Baldridge and
Ed Rumbaugh, will play antique and
homemade instruments. A theremin, syn
Please see MONSTER on 10
Art Courtesy of Howlooseanation
PERFORMANCE QUARTET Howlooseanation bills its produc
tion of “Der Golem” as a multimedia combination of music,
film and dance.
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