eye (2006-19)

Ballsy

Those Canadian Trendsetters!

Drinking Lessons, with Steven Crime

I, Audience

Ballsy

That’s the question being asked via an interactive multi-media work currently on display at the Emporium. The brainchild of sculptor Lee Jines , sound artist Seva , digital media artist Micheal Tomlinson and painter/printmaker Gay Bryant , “Don’t Let the Ball Fall, Y’all” considers the fate of the Sunsphere from more perspectives than the ’sphere has windows. There’s a documentary video interviewing key city figures, as well as out-of-the-box thinking street-folk, about what our favorite golden ball means within the context of the city’s identity. Seva contributes a sound-art piece entitled “Aue Borealis,” pertaining to the sun, and an inflatable-looking sculpture nearby is paneled with photos of the ’sphere and whimsical musings.

But perhaps the most intriguing component resulted from the artists turning the microphone over to the people themselves. Wire screens are strung with illustrated proposals for what should be done with the landmark, and suggestions range from playful (“Move it to Sevier County,” “Indoor soccer field,” “Giant disco ball,” “Bungee-jumping platform,” and, of course, “Wigsphere”) to varying degrees of feasible (“Nightclub,” “Planetarium,” “IMAX—project video on the ceiling about the history of Knoxville,” and “Use it as a solar collector by day to light it at night”). Do what you want, one note warns, just don’t turn it into a Wal-Mart.

The artists intend to donate “Don’t Let the Ball Fall, Y’all” to the mayor’s office shortly after the exhibition closes on May 26. Let’s hope it gets the ball rolling. 

Those Canadian Trendsetters!

“I’ve always been a big Romero fan [writer of the original Dawn of the Dead , Night of the Living Dead , Land of the Dead and so on],” says Luttrell. “I just love the mindlessness of zombies. It reminds me of society, how we are all programmed to devour and consume.”

Along with his personal friends, Luttrell’s recruited other zombie enthusiasts through the magic of the Internet, and expects anywhere from 20 to 100 ghouls to make it out. “It’s not a big deal. We’re not sponsored or raising money or anything like that. It’s just, if you like zombies, dress up and come on out,” says Luttrell, who plans to work his airbrush kit to achieve that au naturel, blood-drenched look.

The walk starts Saturday, May 13, at 7 p.m. on Market Square and will proceed through downtown and the Old City, no doubt stopping for zombie fuel, like Bloody Marys and maybe a few High Lifes, for irony.

Drinking Lessons, with Steven Crime

Crime told us that, if you want a sweet, pass-out buzz, then you need to be drinking more fortified wine. But, if you’re especially adventurous, then you need to be guzzling Thunderbird , one of the most demonic drinks to ever pass FDA inspections.

The boozy guitarist recalled a memory of a gig in Atlanta—well, in truth, it wasn’t much of a memory—when he downed a few Thunderbirds and...well, that’s the end of the story, because this stuff’s that potent, a veritable off -switch for the brain, crafted with the discriminating tastes of America’s guitarists in mind.

I, Audience

“Anyone here ever been to Monroeville?” said Jon Worley , frontman for the bluesy, shoeless, hillbilly-and-proud-of-it Cornbredblues Band . “It’s in the fourth most polluted county in the nation. I’ve been drinking the tap water there all my life. Only got a couple growths to report.”

Jon Worley, the band’s multi-instrument virtuoso, handles vocals, guitar, wurlitzer and harmonicas, backed up by Daniel Lancaster Barry on the sax and flute, Nashville’s own Daniel Broaderick on Guitar, Shaggy on bass and Bobby Manley behind the drumset.

“We’re gonna scream, sweat, bleed—and, we’re gonna drink,” Worley promised, just before playing some tight, thick, cornbred psychobilly, the kind of stuff that’ll make you appreciate countrified folk.

Worley swears that he once played in a hardcore metal band until a particularly rowdy show generated a damage estimate that was well in the thousands. “I just figured it be safer playing some folk tunes,” he told the crowd at Patrick Sullivan’s. It’s become a welcome stylistic change, because Cornbredblues is a singularity in the throwback, grimy country music scene. As Worley’s wont to say, “They’re holding down the fort.”