Author Archive: Jamie Manser

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Authentic Photography, Natural Bodies: A Beautiful Body Project

Authentic Photography, Natural Bodies: A Beautiful Body Project

May 7, 2014 |

There’s a hunger in the world for love, acceptance, compassion and understanding. There’s also a hunger in the women of this world—and definitely those imbued by the unrealistic dictates of Western culture and the media’s unrelenting notion of what “perfection” looks like—to find self-love in bodies that don’t match what is showcased on television screens, […]

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Odaiko Sonora’s Taiko Passion

Odaiko Sonora’s Taiko Passion

May 2, 2014 |

In an unassuming, square industrial building on Downtown’s southern edge is a place of creation. It is the Rhythm Industry Performance Factory and during a bright spring morning, Odaiko Sonora’s community taiko group is at practice. Sweating to the beats. Taiko, or “big drum” in Japanese, is ensemble drumming and it is a physically demanding […]

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Sacred Machine: Creation, Evolution & Moving On

Sacred Machine: Creation, Evolution & Moving On

May 1, 2014 |

It’s easy to get deep with Daniel Martin Diaz and Paula Catherine Valencia. Diaz’s art and Valencia’s writing—plus their music with Blind Divine and Crystal Radio—dig into the heart of the mysteries of existence. One cannot look at Diaz’s work without feeling pulled into a rabbit hole of esoteric human inquiries; his pieces—especially in his […]

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Downtown’s Shifting Landscape

Downtown’s Shifting Landscape

May 1, 2014 |

All progress is precarious, and the solution of one problem brings us face to face with another problem. – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In the mid-‘80s and through the ‘90s and early ‘00s, Downtown was considered a schlumpy locale eschewed by seemingly many Tucsonans. It was the artists, musicians, the writers and photographers, galleries, […]

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Ryanhood’s Return

Ryanhood’s Return

April 5, 2014 |

“Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty…” – Theodore Roosevelt After a couple of years of lying low due to music business and touring burn out, Tucson’s power-pop duo Ryanhood released a gorgeously melodic, folksy, acoustic guitar-driven 12-track disk at the end of 2013. The two […]

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Sweet Ghosts’ “Certain Truths”

Sweet Ghosts’ “Certain Truths”

April 2, 2014 |

Transcendent and ethereal are not adjectives to be taken lightly, but such descriptions of this gloriously heart-wrenching debut release are more than apropos. The 10-track album features poetic storytelling, presenting evocative slices of life that put the listener into the thick of alternately uncomfortable and uplifting tales. The lulling songs are reflective, haunting; there’s lightness […]

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Tesoro’s Resplendent Dazzle

Tesoro’s Resplendent Dazzle

March 10, 2014 |

A new self-released studio album captures the essence of the band’s live performances. The musical palate of this 11-track, self-titled album is beautifully complex while remaining completely accessible. Tesoro melds amazing instrumentation with passionate vocals that are at times bold, other times mellow, but always richly textured.  The sexy, sultry songs cull from a variety […]

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Greyhound Soul’s 20 Years of Rock & Roll

Greyhound Soul’s 20 Years of Rock & Roll

February 25, 2014 |

Two hours really isn’t enough time to comb through a band’s two decade span. But we’re trying. My back porch has become a portal to the past, with front man Joe Peña and bassist Duane Hollis regaling a couple of their long-term fans with Greyhound Soul stories. Disclosure/backdrop: Peña and Hollis are at the Manslander […]

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Tucson’s YWCA Moves Community Upward

Tucson’s YWCA Moves Community Upward

January 10, 2014 |

The lobby of YWCA of Tucson (YW) was festive in mid-December, with a large Christmas tree and upbeat volunteers. One offers coffee before ringing Tana Kelch to let her know: “A Jamie is here to see you.” Kelch, the Sales & Marketing Manager and previous proprietor of Bohemia: An Artisans Emporium, comes out smiling. There’s […]

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The Ark & The Links – Ned Schaper’s Move

The Ark & The Links – Ned Schaper’s Move

January 1, 2014 |

Stepping into the Mat Bevel Institute is entering an orbit where whimsy and physics converge and any trace of what society says should or shouldn’t be doesn’t enter, or stay for long. There’s a magical energy that defies conformity, comprised of characters built from lost-then-found objects – spinning and dancing and gyrating, showing mirth, or […]

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