High Marx 

May Day by the bay

SAT 5/1

The Bay Area is one of the few places in the United States to take part in an old-fashioned leftist May Day. While proles in the rest of the country are reporting to work at the local Wal-Mart or searching Dumpsters for bottles and cans, the Niebyl-Proctor Marxist Library for Social Research (don't you just love that name? So 20th century) is holding a May Day Celebration of Labor Solidarity all day Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Entertainment includes a book sale at 10 a.m.; an Australian movie called Seeing Red at noon; traditional labor songs and rockabilly by Red Dust at 2 and 5 p.m.; such agit-prop speakers as Michael Parenti and Doug Dowd at 3; a backyard barbecue; and of course a rousing chorus of "The Internationale" to climax the occasion. For those workers who are unemployed, the suggested $5 donation can be waived. No capitalist roaders or running-dog lackeys of imperialism, please. For more info: 925-828-8184 or nieprolib@igc.apc.org. 6501 Telegraph Ave., Oakland. Don't let the revolution start without you. -- Kelly Vance

4/28-5/3

Lit Happens

As Vanity Fair's profiler of the stars, Maureen Orth knows more than most about Michael Jackson's nose. At the library in UC Berkeley's North Gate Hall, Orth discusses The Importance of Being Famous, her latest book chronicling shocking discoveries behind the scenes of what she calls "the celebrity-industrial complex" (Wed., 7 p.m.). ... The reason N. Jay Young doesn't spell out his first name in his byline is that it's Neil. Speaking of nomenclature, ask him at Orinda Books whether the name of the British bark in his new nautical novel A Ship's Tale -- the Bonnie Clyde -- is a matter of intentional irony (Thu., 4 p.m.). ... Featured, ironically enough, in Maureen Orth's book, politically protean Arianna Huffington has a new book of her own, Fanatics and Fools: A Game Plan for Winning Back America. At Cody's Fourth Street, the lady who gave in to Arnold joins the beat-Bush chorus (Thu., 7 p.m.). ... Discuss dust bunnies with Louise Rafkin, who reads from Other People's Dirt: A Housecleaner's Curious Adventures in the St. Mary's College bookstore. Don't piss her off; she also happens to have a black belt in the Indonesian martial art Poekoelan Tjimindie Tulen (Thu., 7:30 p.m.). ... With the critical acclaim lavished on his debut short-story collection, Jubilee King, Jesse Shepard has established himself as more than just Sam Shepard's son, which he also is. Hear his tales of human angst at Black Oak (Thu., 7:30 p.m.). ... If you hold that poverty can only be honestly described by those who have lived with it, check out local icon Michelle Tea, editor of Without a Net: The Female Experience of Growing Up Working Class. She's at Boadecia's without a silver spoon (Fri., 7:30 p.m.). ... International cult phenom Darren Shan, endorsed by none other than J.K. Rowling, reads at Dark Carnival from his novel Cirque du Freak, which happens to be about ... a dark carnival (Mon., 5:30 p.m.). -- Anneli Rufus

FRI 4/30

Space World

Oakland quartet GoJoGo hasn't been around long, but its hypnotic sound seems to come from an ancient place. An ancient place with samplers, of course -- an ancient place, let's say, between this world and the next or the last, where fluid violin exists side by side with effervescent tabla and tenacious stand-up bass, all vibrating in a halo of samples and bleeps. The ensemble aims a cosmic wink your way this Friday at the Jazz House (3192 Adeline St., Berkeley), beginning at 8 p.m. Cover charge is a $8-$15 sliding-scale donation. 510-655-9755. -- Stefanie Kalem

FRI 4/30

Hey, Youth

Kids today ... with their event production, organizing capabilities, and positive, safe environments to hang out in. Sheesh. Bay Attention 3, at the Oakland Box (1928 Telegraph), is the latest in a monthly series put on by the Box Theater Youth Committee. Friday's event features Terf Hawgg Evangilist (T.H.E.), K.E.V., Aphasiatiks, and Global Spitters. 7 p.m.-1 a.m., $5 before 10 p.m., $7 after. 510-451-1932. -- Stefanie Kalem

WED 4/28

The Biz in Showbiz

Musicians' Workshop has how-to can-do

"I've worked with Linda Wosskow for several years now, and from the very beginning she has shown deep respect for the music and for the musicians she works with," writes Donna Viscuso of Wild Mango and the Snake Trio in a testimonial to the British-born booking agent. "Her hard work and high level of professionalism makes our lives as musicians a lot easier." For the last few years, Wosskow has represented an impressive cast of jazz, Latin, and world musicians in the Bay Area and elsewhere. A seasoned publicist, she started Oye Productions to help resident and internationally recognized musical artists get gigs. Yet Wosskow noticed how little experience many of these performers had in promoting and marketing their music. To help demystify the realities of the music biz, she is offering a seminar tonight (Wednesday) at 7:30 p.m. in La Peña's community classroom, for those who want to hear her trade tips. "I've spent a lot of time with local musicians, showing them what it means to put together a nice promotional packet with a bio and photograph," she says from her Greenbrae home. "I try to pass on information about how to contact radio stations, assemble an e-mail list or mailing list, or produce a demo CD with clarity in sound and text. The information I have to pass on is generic to anybody who has a band and is proud of what they have, and who wants people to know about them." The Musicians' Workshop may fill in gaps for bandleaders, musicians, and aficionados seeking to put their best foot forward when they finally get that club owner, record executive, or booking agent on the line. La Peña Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. 510-849-2568 or 415-461-3180. $20 door, $18 advance. -- Jesse "Chuy" Varela

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