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CROSSROADS GUITAR FESTIVAL
Feb. 26, 2004
Eric has announced a three-day Crossroads Guitar Festival to take place Friday, June 4 through Sunday, June 6 at Fair Park in Dallas. This one-time event, created for music enthusiasts around the globe, will raise money for Crossroads Centre Antigua, the treatment and education center founded in 1997 by Eric Clapton and now an independently run entity.
This unique event at Fair Park will kick off Friday, June 4 with the opening of the Guitar Center Village, coordinated by Guitar Center, the national retailer of musical instruments.
The festival will be the first of its kind to create a unique bridge between fans and musicians through leading guitar manufacturer exhibits and guitar clinics. Attendees will be offered once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to be in an intimate setting as artists give fans the ultimate look into their craft. The Guitar Center Village activities for Saturday, June 5 include live music performances on three stages. SIRIUS Satellite Radio, as a supporting sponsor will host one of these stages and will broadcast from the Festival.
The Crossroads Guitar Festival culminates on Sunday, June 6 with an All-Star special benefit concert at the Cotton Bowl Stadium. The concert, which will begin at 1:00 p.m. and continue through Sunday evening will include performances by Eric Clapton and Doyle Bramhall II, J.J. Cale, Larry Carlton, Robert Cray, Buddy Guy, David Hidalgo, Eric Johnson, B.B. King, Sonny Landreth, Brian May, Pat Metheny, Robert Randolph, Otis Rush, Carlos Santana, Hubert Sumlin, Dan Tyminski, Steve Vai, Jimmie Vaughan, Joe Walsh and ZZ Top. The extraordinary "house bands" will be none other than Booker T & The MG's, Jimmie Vaughan's band and Eric Clapton's band. Other artists will be announced as details are confirmed.
On June 24, 2004, Christie's, the New York based auction house will present "Crossroads Guitar Auction ~ Eric Clapton and Friends for the Crossroads Centre." This auction will feature more than fifty guitars personally owned by Eric Clapton, as well as a group of guitars donated by musician friends including Pete Townshend and Steve Vai. Pre-sale exhibitions will be organized in Dallas during the Festival (June 4-6), in Los Angeles (June 8-12) and New York (June 19-24). The proceeds of the sale will benefit the Crossroads Centre in Antigua.
CROSSROADS GUITAR FESTIVAL HOURS:
Friday, June 4: 4:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Guitar Center Village open to the public
Saturday, June 5: 1:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Guitar Center Village open to the public and live entertainment on three stages
Sunday, June 6: 11:00 a.m.
Guitar Center Village open all day to the public & doors open to stadium 1:00 p.m. - TBD Cotton Bowl Concert
Tickets to each day of the Crossroads Guitar Festival will be sold separately and will be available starting March 13 through Ticketmaster at http://www.ticketmaster.com. Tickets are priced $15 for Friday, $30 for Saturday and $60 for Sunday.
Founded in 1997, Crossroads Centre, Antigua was created to provide treatment and education to chemically dependent persons, those with other compulsive addictive behaviors, their families and significant others. Treatment is provided through residential care, family and aftercare programs. The pathway to recovery is founded on the movement toward a change in lifestyle. Crossroads Centre, Antigua also operates a 16 bed halfway-house called The Bevon House (exclusively for local Antiguan residents) and facilitates a school-based education series, Breaking the Cycle, in all local schools.
was invited to a preliminary screening of Mel Gibson’s
The Passion of the Christ this last weekend in a
private residence. As we settled into their home theatre,
the hostess introduced the movie by saying, “I’m
not going to say ‘enjoy the film’. This is not
a film you enjoy. This is a film you experience.”
was right. The movie confronts you with the harsh reality
of what Jesus went through.
set out to make a film of the passion of Jesus “like
traveling back in time and watching the events unfold exactly
as they occurred…as the Bible tells it.” Along
the way he has created a work of art. The Caravaggio lighting
and earth tone coloration blends beautifully with the dialogue
performed completely in Latin and Aramaic. Gibson’s
decision to use the ancient languages was a stroke of genius.
They not only add to the overall realism of the picture, but
their poetic and guttural quality is deeply moving.
stroke of genius was casting James Caviezel as Jesus. Best
known for playing the lead in the 2002 surprise hit, The
Count of Monte Cristo, Caviezel brought a transcendent
strength to every frame he was in, which is nearly the entire
movie. Certain movies succeed or fail on one casting decision.
This is one of them. Caviezel was so consumed by his part
he dislocated his shoulder during the filming. Like Gibson,
Caviezel comes from a devout Catholic family.
movie opens in the Garden of Gethsemane and continues through
the final hours of Jesus’ life. It is a gut-wrenching
portrayal of love-filled forgiveness and hate-filled violence.
The film grabs you and never lets you go.
the end of the film we sat in complete silence for several
minutes. No one moved.
next morning in the Sunday New York Times there was an article
by Frank Rich that ridiculed Gibson for making The Passion
of the Christ. Rich contends that the controversy over
the film may have a negative effect on the film’s impact
and box-office success.
months the film has been at the center of a firestorm of criticism.
Critics have castigated Gibson for the hubris in making a
movie about the life of Christ. In another article Frank Rich
dismissed the film with, “To the extent that there can
be any agreement about the facts of a story on which even
the four Gospels don’t agree, his movie is destined
to be inaccurate.” If we did accept this criteria then
no one could speak of the life of Jesus with confidence.
other main criticism associated with The Passion is the claim
that Gibson is anti-Semitic. Christians should be more aware
of the very real danger of continued anti-Semitism. The Anti-Defamation
League has “grave concerns” about the film according
to Rabbi Eugene Korn, the director of the organization’s
Office of Interfaith Affairs.
ADL Executive Director Abraham Foxman had seen the movie,
he told CNN that they are troubled that the film has portrayed
“the Jews, the Jewish community, in a manner that we
have experienced historically. Seeing passion plays used to
incite not only a passion of love in terms of Christianity,
but at the same time, to instill and incite hatred of Jews
because of deicide.”
Wednesday night, the 21st of January, Foxman was one of three
Jewish leaders who pretended to be pastors in order to see
the film. Their verdict? “At every single opportunity,
Gibson’s film reinforces the notion that the Jewish
authorities and the Jewish mob are the ones ultimately responsible
for the Crucifixion.” In response to such criticism,
Gibson dropped the controversial scene where Pontius Pilate
washes his hands to show he is innocent of Christ’s
impending death, and the crowd cries out, “His blood
be on us and on our children!” This passage has been
interpreted to mean that Jews alone are collectively guilty
of Jesus’ death.
Plays, such as the one held in Oberammergau, Germany every
decade, were once common throughout Europe. They have on occasion
incited violence by Christians against those they call ‘Christ-killers.’
Any attempt to show Jews and Judaism as collectively responsible
for the death of Jesus is cause for alarm to current Jewish
leadership. It is understandable that the Jewish community
would be concerned when the number one box-office star in
the world would make a modern film adaptation of the Passion.
They know history has an ominous habit of repeating itself
when it comes to Jewish persecution.
Anti-Defamation League position is best expressed by a statement
taken from their web site. “Passion Plays are, in general,
sources of theological anti-Judaism and do not help to improve
the relationship of Christians and Jews.” Such a sweeping
statement by the ADL is excessive. People of faith must be
allowed to express their faith. There are aspects of all religions
that someone else finds offensive. The danger is not the expression
of faith but actual acts of discrimination. A reenactment
of the passion of Jesus is not the moral equivalence of a
Christians must be careful here. There is reason for real
concern by the ADL. The usual rebuttal to the charge of Christian
anti-Semitism is that Jesus was Jewish and all of his initial
followers were Jewish so how can rational Christians honestly
believe Jews are inferior or evil? But for hundreds of years,
in almost every Christian country, some did believe exactly
that. These facts did not stop Christian persecution of Jews
in the past. The question of anti-Semitism can not be dismissed
with this over-used generalization. Gibson’s film itself
must be considered on its own content.
key questions regarding the film’s possible anti-Semitism
are, “Was Caiaphus’ decision to push Pontius Pilate
into crucifying Jesus overemphasized and portrayed as irrational
hatred?” “Was Pilate portrayed as a compassionate
and reasonable person who was outmaneuvered by the cagey Jewish
leadership?” “Did Gibson disproportionably select
those gospel texts that most emphatically place the responsibility
for the decision to kill Jesus on the Jews?” And finally,
“Is the conflict portrayed as Jews vs. Christians or
does the struggle take place within the Jewish community?”
all four of these questions perhaps even more care could have
been taken. But is the film anti-Semitic in its emphasis?
Certainly not. Caiaphus insists that those who wish to defend
Jesus must have their say. He demands to hear with his own
ears blasphemy from Jesus. Though tight lipped throughout
his trial and crucifixion, here Jesus seems intent to set
his own death into motion. He answers Caiaphus that he is
the Christ. He knows he is boxing Caiaphus in with his words.
Caiaphus rips his robes and proclaims Jesus guilty. The film,
by using this event as the inciting incident, gives Jesus
the rightful role of protagonist. Jesus knew that for Caiaphus,
blasphemy was considered the greatest sin, one punishable
there is another point to remember. Gibson is not a theologian.
He is a filmmaker. A very successful one. He knows, like all
students of good film know, that the protagonist must make
the key decisions that drive the plot line. From the vantage
of film structure it was not Caiaphus or the Jewish leadership
that killed Jesus. It was not even the bloodthirsty Roman
soldiers who beat him to near death and then nailed him to
the cross. It was Jesus himself who made the decision to lay
down his life.
vitriol surrounding this movie puts into question the larger
culture issue of pluralism; namely can we live well with others
while holding fast to our own core beliefs? This means allowing
others to express beliefs that are troubling or at odds with
our own. All of us are a bit too sensitive when it comes to
our worldview. This is certainly true of many Christians.
In this case it may be true for some in the Jewish community.
Strong dialogue should be encouraged. But when it crosses
over into condemnation that seeks to dismiss or silence those
with whom we disagree then everyone suffers.
facilitate much needed communication Icon Productions, Mel
Gibson’s production company, plans to convene meetings
with significant Jewish leaders over the next 30 days.
how will the film do? Entertainment publicist Michael Levin
told the Washington Times that, “This film has all the
makings of a (box-office) bomb.” Mr. Levine will almost
certainly be proven wrong. The distributors of The Passion
of Christ, New Market Films, plan to open the film on 2,000
screens across the nation on Ash Wednesday, February 25th.
If they secure additional financing the number will increase
to 3,000 screens, which is considered broad distribution.
They are hoping for strong box-office revenues in the first
two weeks to propel the film into must-see status.
of this controversy has not hurt preliminary ticket sales.
Bob Berney, the president of New Market Films, said of the
demand that he “knew it would start building and building,
but now it’s like a tsunami.” Church groups have
been ordering large blocks of tickets, and ticket chains have
set up toll-free numbers to take advance orders.
you see the movie I believe you will agree with me it is not
about who gets blamed for killing Jesus. Christian faith teaches
that we all do. In the film there is a series of graphic close-ups
of a Roman hand holding a hammer, driving the spikes into
Christ's hands and feet. The Roman hand was Gibson's. It is
his only acting role in the film.
the end of the day the film is not about the passion of Mel
Gibson or the New York Times or the Anti-Defamation League.
The movie is about the passion of Christ.
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THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST
MORE MOVIE REVIEWS
Feb. 25, 2004
Movie directed by Mel Gibson & produced by Bruce Davey, Mel Gibson, and Steve McEveety. From the website: "...Enzo Sisti is the executive producer. Among the talented crew joining the production are four-time Oscar® nominee Caleb Deschanel as director of photography, award-winning Italian production designer Francesco Frigeri, double Oscar® nominee Maurizio Millenotti as costume designer, the special effects makeup team of Keith VanderLaan and Greg Cannom (who has twice won an Academy Award®) and two-time Oscar® nominee John Wright as editor." James Caviezel portrays Jesus Christ.
From Icon Distribution, Inc. & NewMarket Films.
In theatres starting Feb. 25, 2004 (Playing in Anchorage, AK at Dimond Center 9 & Fireweed 7 Theatres & Totem Theatres)
SPECIAL UPDATE ON THE MOVIE ..... THE PASSION FROM JODY DEAN
(Jody is a TV anchor person on Channel 11-CBS in Dallas/Fort Worth)
Feb 5, 2004
There've been a ton of emails and forwards floating around recently from those who've had the privilege of seeing Mel Gibson's "The Passion Of The Christ" prior to its actual release. I thought I'd give you my reaction after seeing it last night.
The screening was on the first night of "Elevate!", a weekend-long seminar for young people at Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano. There were about 2,000 people there, and the movie was shown after several speakers had taken the podium. It started around 9 and finished around 11...so I reckon the film is about two hours in length. Frankly, I lost complete track of time - so I can't be sure.
I want you to know that I started in broadcasting when I was 13 years old. I've been in the business of writing, performing, production, and broadcasting for a long time. I've been a part of movies, radio, television, stage and other productions - so I know how things are done. I know about soundtracks and special effects and make-up and screenplays. I think I've seen just about every kind of movie or TV show ever made - from extremely inspirational to extremely gory. I read alot, too - and have covered stories and scenes that still make me wince. I also have a vivid imagination, and have the ability to picture things as they must have happened - or to anticipate things as they will be portrayed. I've also seen an enormous amounty of footage from Gibson's film, so I thought I knew what was coming.
But there is nothing in my existence - nothing I could have read, seen, heard, thought, or known - that could have prepared me for what I saw on screen last night. This is not a movie that anyone will "like". I don't think it's a movie anyone will "love". It certainly doesn't "entertain". There isn't even the sense that one has just watched a movie. What it is, is an experience - on a level of primary emotion that is scarcely comprehensible. Every shred of human preconception or predisposition is utterly stripped away. No one will eat popcorn during this film. Some may not eat for days after they've seen it. Quite honestly, I wanted to vomit. It hits that hard.
I can see why some people are worried about how the film portrays the Jews. They should be worried. No, it's not anti-Semitic. What it is, is entirely shattering. There are no "winners". No one comes off looking "good" - except Jesus. Even His own mother hesitates. As depicted, the Jewish leaders of Jesus' day merely do what any of us would have done - and still do.
They protected their percieved "place" - their sense of safety and security, and the satisfaction of their own "rightness". But everyone faulters. Caiphus judges. Peter denies. Judas betrays. Simon the Cyrene balks. Mark runs away. Pilate equivocates. The crowd mocks. The soldiers laugh. Longinus still stabs with his pilus. The centurion still carries out his orders. And as Jesus fixes them all with a glance, they still turn away. The Jews, the Romans, Jesus' friends - they all fall.
Everyone, except the Principal Figure. Heaven sheds a single, mighty tear -and as blood and water spew from His side, the complacency of all creation is eternally shattered. The film grabs you in the first five seconds, and never lets go. The brutality, humiliation, and gore is almost inconcievable - and still probably doesn't go far enough. The scourging alone seems to never end, and you cringe at the sound and splatter of every blow - no matter how steely your nerves. Even those who have known combat or prison will have trouble, no matter their experience - because this Man was not conscripted. He went willingly, laying down His entirety for all. It is one thing for a soldier to die for his countrymen. It's something else entirely to think of even a common man dying for those who hate and wish to kill him. But this is no common man. This is the King of the Universe. The idea that anyone could or would have gone through such punishment is unthinkable - but this Man was completely innocent, completely holy - and paying the price for others. He screams as He is laid upon the cross, "Father, they don't know. They don't know..."
What Gibson has done is to use all of his considerable skill to portray the most dramatic moment of the most dramatic events since the dawn of time. There is no escape. It's a punch to the gut that puts you on the canvas, and you don't get up. You are simply confronted by the horror of what was done - what had to be done - and why. Throughout the entire film, I found myself apologizing.
What you've heard about how audiences have reacted is true. There was no sound after the film's conclusion. No noise at all. No one got up. No one moved. The only sound one could hear was sobbing. In all my years of public life, I have never heard anything like that.
I told many of you that Gibson had reportedly re-shot the ending to include more "hope" through the Resurrection? That's not true. The Resurrection scene is perhaps the shortest in the entire movie - and yet it packs a punch that can't be quantified. It is perfect. There is no way to negotiate the meaning out of it. It simply asks, "Now, what will you do?"
I'll leave the details to you, in the hope that you will see the film - but one thing above all stands out, and I have to tell you about it. It comes from the end of Jesus' temptations in the wilderness - where the Bible says Satan left him "until a more opportune time". I imagine Satan never quit tempting Christ, but this film captures beyond words the most opportune time.
At every step of the way, Satan is there at Jesus' side - imploring Him to quit, reasoning with Him to give up, and seducing Him to surrender. For the first time, one gets an heart-stopping idea of the sense of madness that must have enveloped Jesus - a sense of the evil that was at His very elbow. The physical punishment is relentless - but it's the sense of psychological torture that is most overwhelming. He should have quit. He should have opened His mouth. He should have called 10,000 angels. No one would have blamed Him. What we deserve is obvious. But He couldn't do that. He wouldn't do that. He didn't do that. He doesn't do that. It was not and is not His character. He was obedient, all the way to the cross - and you feel the real meaning of that phrase in a place the human heart usually doesn't dare to go.
You understand that we are called to that same level of obedience. With Jesus' humanity so irresistably on display, you understand that we have no excuse. There is no place to hide. The truth is this: Is it just a "movie"? In a way, yes. But it goes far beyond that, in a fashion I've never felt - in any forum. We may think we "know". We know nothing. We've gone 2,000 years - used to the idea of a pleasant story, and a sanitized Christ. We expect the ending, because we've heard it so many times. God forgive us. This film tears that all away. It's is as close as any of us will ever get to knowing, until we fully know. Paul understood. "Be urgent, in and out of season."
Luke wrote that Jesus reveals Himself in the breaking of the bread. Exactly. "The Passion Of The Christ" shows that Bread being broken.
Go see this movie.
JOEY FENDER & THE 55'S
ANCHORAGE'S HOTTEST ROCKABILLY & BLUES BAND
NOT YOUR AVERAGE JOEY
The father-and-son odyssey of Fender and his 55s
February 8 - 12, 2003 / Vol. 12, Ed. 6
LEGACY: PAYING THE PRICE FOR THE CLINTON YEARS
Hardcover book by Rich Lowry
From Regnery Publishing, 470 pages
Available for $19.58, a 30% discount, thru this website from Amazon.com.
SHUT UP AND SING:
HOW ELITES FROM HOLLYWOOD, POLITICS, AND THE UN ARE
Hardcover Book by Laura Ingraham
From Regnery Publishing, 368 pages
September 15, 2003
Available from Amazon.com thru this website for $19.57, a 30% discount.
BLACK BOX VOTING
Book By Bev Harris From Talion Publishing
BLACK BOX VOTING Book from Talion Publishing
So you think electronic voting is secure? Well here are the facts & they are not good.
BIO (from Coast to Coast AM website:
Bev Harris, author of "Black Box Voting: Ballot-Tampering in the 21st Century," began writing on the subject of electronic voting machines in October 2002. Her investigative journalism has since been cited in The New York Times (three times), and on CBS, Fox News, and CNN. In writing Black Box Voting, Harris spent over two thousand hours researching voting machines, and interviewed hundreds of witnesses including many election officials and even voting machine programmers who work directly for the firms that build these machines.
During the course of writing Black Box Voting, Harris discovered that one of the largest voting machine companies, Diebold Election Systems, had committed a massive security breach, leaving thousands of sensitive voting system program files on an unprotected Web site. These files have now triggered a national investigation and activism movement to restore clean, trustworthy voting systems.
Bookstore & Library Edition:
ISBN 1-890916-90-0 $19.95
To order from Bev Harris:
Internet paperback edition: ISBN 1-929462-45-X)