XPN Music Film Festival Round Up 2013

Monday, April 22, 2013


The XPN Music Film Festival was the second collaboration of the radio station WXPN/and Philly music venue World Cafe Live produced by The Philadelphia Film Society.

I got to a few more screenings last year (XPN Music Film Fest 2012), just kinda dipped in and out this year, but what I experienced was worth while!

Opening Night was Thursday April 11th-  You can't go wrong opening with something Beatles inspired. In a post apocalyptic world (click for T & T Oblivion post)  all that will be left are cockroaches dancing to The Beatles.

Honestly though, the opening night film Good Ol' Freda (Director Ryan White) was really fascinating. It features the secretary and Beatlemania Fan Club manager, Freda Kelly as she recounts her life with this iconic, bigger than life band. As a girl of 17, Freda started working for The Beatles Manager, Brian Epstein in 1962, she was really just a fan of this then, underground Liverpool band, but she wound up knowing John, Paul, George and Ringo intimately, along with their families, staying with the band until their official break up.

Freda wasn't pretty or sexy, but she really ran the show.  She even tells of a time she had John Lennon on his knees in front of her, it's not like it sounds.  They really treated her like a little sister. She's kept loads of memorabilia and pictures, but it wasn't until recently that she ever discussed her illustrious past.  Now she's happy to have her life documented in this way, mostly so her grandson can know his grandma once did something really special.

Philly's AfroDJiak spinning songs by the Fab Four with a new beats

Then it was on to the Opening Night Reception at University of Penn Law School catered by Campbell's Place (8337 Germantown Ave Phila PA 19118)

Just a sample. There were many more good eats!

I asked a group of fun looking badge holders who were gathered together talking, to please pose for a picture, turned out one of them was singer/songwriter/star of Pleased To Meet Me, John Doe!

Speak of which, that was my Friday Night (4/12) screening choice.

I think you would classify Pleased To Meet Me (Director Archie Borders) as a mockumentary. It's certainly an XPN music fan's dream, as it stars Aimee Mann as Laura, a music manager/publicist/producer who gets an idea to put together a band made up entirely out of the classified section of a Louisville, Kentucky music magazine. You know, where bands post ads - searching for new keyboardist, and in turn, a keyboardist might post - looking to join a Jefferson Starship cover band etc... Laura's scheme is not meant to be an actual band, she's doing it to film the project as a music experiment.
She reluctantly tells a musician she represents, Pete Jones, (John Doe) about the idea. Jones, as she feared, wants to be apart of the experiment, citing he can be the draw to bring these disparate music souls together; but she fears Pete will become the focus, as he's a famous and respected musician, in the way that John Doe himself is famous and respected, in certain music circles, not the pop musical circles; but the same circles that also knows and loves Loudon Wainwright, III, Jon Langford and Joe Henry who are also featured in the movie.

Please To Meet Me is quirky, funny in a dry, wry kinda way. It captures that music insiders mood. And at the same time, it manages to depict everything we love about Reality TV shows, the weird characteristics and vulnerabilities that people don't hide when being filmed. The things that go wrong that make it a better show. And the eventual camaraderie and shared experience.

As a Pop Princess and R&B Diva (with a couple other genre's thrown in) I shouldn't be familiar with any of the people starring in Pleased To Meet Me, but my best friend Diane Roka, has acquainted me with the finer folks on the alternative music charts.  Diane is both a music journalist and a working artist capturing musicians in the throes of their performance.  Below are her drawings of John Doe and Loudon Wainwright from the Q&A after the screening. The drawing of Aimee Mann and Jon Langford were done at previous World Cafe Live concerts.

Visit soon to be completed DianeRoka.com for a full-size look at all her work! 

And I have even more on Pleased to Meet Me - John Doe performed a number during the Q & A after the screening hosted by David Dye which also featured director Archie Borders, writer David Henry and Loudon Wainwright III.

Visit Tinsel & Tine's Youtube channel to see and hear both the song and Q & A

Saturday's (4/13) highlight for me was the Grease Sing-A-Long! I've seen this movie musical countless times, but first time getting to belt out the tunes with other Grease Geeks like me.  
Well, all Grease Geeks except the two girls behind me. Instead of enjoying the antics at Rydell High, these two were chatt'n it up like they were at their high school reunion, they never shut up!

Couldn't bear the Flaming Lip Concert Footage, but it was fun getting my Freak Night look on!
 Done by makeup artist Lauren Palmer

Wasn't able to get to anything Sunday, although I was told by a couple of people that I would have loved the closing night film and performance-  Twenty Feet From Stardom.

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See that scrumptious looking meal in the slideshow? Ate at Baby Blues BBQ btw screenings. It's a hop'n joint, no frills, youthful & fun. Had the Brisket (slightly fatty, but I like that) variety of BBQ sauces on the table. Platter came with two sides $15.99. The greens were a bit too healthy for me, marinated in tomato sauce instead of whatever makes greens really good. Cornbread (I think made with a bit o molasses) and Mashed Sweet Potatoes good, not great - 2.5 Tines

Dining "Tine" Rating System: 
* Excellent - 4 Tines / * Great - 3 Tines / * Good - 2 Tines / * Fair - 1 Tine / * Poor - Tarnished 

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About This Blog

is about discovering what I find pleasing in screening & eating - in case you missed it, the name is a play on Tinseltown using the Tines of a Fork.

Feel free to send me info on a film or new restaurant you'd like me to highlight.

Will there ever be a cap on movie prices?

Will we one day pay $20 a pop?

Why don't we pay on a scale?

A crap movie like everything Adam Sandler has ever done should cost about $4.50.
Big action movies like"Lord of the Rings", "Iron Man," "Transformers" are worth $10.
Woody Allen movie or something like "Silver Linings Playbook" $6-$7.
A chick flick or light comedy $5.75 and most Indie Films $5.25.

You could even do it by seasons - all summer block busters from May to August - $10
Sept - November 15th $3.50 - $4
Back to $10 for Thanksgiving and Christmas etc...

Or you can do it by A Actors ($9 - $10), B Actors ($6 - $7) TV actors on the big screen ($3.50 - $4)

Surely I'm not the first person to realize this makes sense. Has it been voted on in the Motion Picture Industry and then vetoed? If so, why?

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