Here's what's on our mind this weekend: Low-budget movies, cheap drinks, free music, Ben Taylor, Mike Piazza and two leading curators of the cultural drift: Augusten Burroughs and KRS-One.
SWEDE ME, BABY
Organizers of the second annual South Florida edition of the low-budget amateur filmmaking craze, Swede Fest 2 Palm Beach, have begun accepting film titles for the July 27 festival at the Borland Center for the Performing Arts (4801 PGA Blvd., Palm Beach Gardens).
As you may recall from the sold-out success of last year’s Swede Fest, only one submission will be accepted for a film, so once, say, “Scarface” has been claimed, you won’t be able to give the Al Pacino classic your very witty “Star Wars” treatment. To call dibs on the film you want to remake, figure it out this weekend and email the title to firstname.lastname@example.org. Already claimed this year: "Point Break," "Napoleon Dynamite" and "They Live!" (Note: You don't have to have your short done to claim a film, just have the title submitted.)
The term “swede” comes from the 2008 Jack Black-Mos Def comedy “Be Kind Rewind,” where the main character re-creates no-budget, laughably bad remakes of hit Hollywood films. Last year's local submissions skewered films such as "The Hunger Games," "Million Dollar Baby," "Avatar," "The Birds" and "Old School."
“There was a lot of crazy creativity,” says Swede Fest Palm Beach spokeswoman Elizabeth Dashiell, recalling last year’s inaugural festival, which drew more than three dozen entries and 500 attendees to its Midtown PGA "gala." Swede Fest is noncompetitive, but a send-up of “The Hulk,” by Stuart brothers Noah and Jonah Kalter, ages 10 and 11, was judged the audience favorite in 2012. This year’s audience winner will receive a prize (yet to be determined), Dashiell says.
“I was really floored by the creativity, because this is a low-budget, no-budget exercise. The lengths to which people would go to get their point across, without spending any money, was amazing,” Dashiell says. “Some had statements to make, some were just poking fun at a blockbuster, some were very earnest. I liked them all for different reasons.”
It's free to enter Swede Fest, but you must submit your finished swede by 11:59 p.m. July 9. It must be less than 3 minutes and pass the PG-13 test. Or as they put it on the website: “Find creative ways to get around the violence, language and nekkidness, people.” More info: SwedeFestPalmBeach.com.
LOOPING YOU IN
The Fort Lauderdale Bus Loop, both a charity event and a great way to hang with a new crowd, returns Friday evening with its popular route between the beach and 17th Street Causeway. As you may remember, from 6 to 11 p.m. the Loop takes participants on continuously running trolleys to a variety of hot spots, where your wristband will get you a free drink at each spot, and free apps at some locations. Participating venues include Deano's, Sopranos, Lulu's Bait Shack, Lauderdale Grill, Tijuana Flats, Bimini Boatyard, Southport and Quarterdeck, where live music will liven up a tented afterparty. Admission is $30 until noon on Friday, $35 at door check-in, open 5:30-9 p.m. at Lauderdale Grill or BeachPlace. As a Fleet Week salute, admission is free for active military. Designated drivers also will be issued a free wristband. A $8 parking pass (good for 24 hours) can be purchased at BeachPlace check-in. All proceeds benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Jessica June, Riverwalk Fort Lauderdale, Covenant House Florida, Broward County Gator Club and Jack & Jill Children's Center. Looking ahead, the Delray Beach Bus Loop will be May 24, and it’s just $20 if you prepay by May 17. Info: BusLoop.org, 954-574-6000.
Poetry Month just ended, but that’s no reason to give up on intellectually stimulating wordplay. KRS-One will download the latest ideas from one of the most elastic and articulate minds in hip-hop in what should be a remarkable Friday night at The Stage in the Design District (170 NE 38th St., Miami). Admission: $20. Info: 305-576-9577, TheStageMiami.com. Also on Friday, Maseo, one third of the influential hip-hop trio De La Soul, will do a DJ set at Rec Room, the beautifully realized retro rumpus room at the Gale Hotel (1685 Collins Ave. Miami Beach). Admission: Free. Info: 786-975-2550, GaleHotel.com, Recroomrsvp@ldvhospitality.com
Similarly, there’s the precise lyricism offered by singer-songwriter Ben Taylor (pictured above), who will do a free show on Sunday in the Rose Bar at the Delano. If the gentle ambitions heard on Taylor’s album “Listening” seem antithetical to the mechanical bump-bump-bump soundtrack of Miami Beach, you’ll be happy to know there is a celebrity component: Taylor is the son of singers James Taylor and Carly Simon. Taylor, who can sound eerily like his old man, will perform from 8 to 9 p.m. The Delano is at 1685 Collins Ave. Info: 305-674-6400, Delano-Hotel.com.
Augusten Burroughs’ latest book, just out in paperback, is called “This is How: Surviving What You Think You Can’t,” but comes with a more detailed subtitle: “Help for the Self: Proven Aid in Overcoming Shyness, Molestation, Fatness, Spinsterhood, Grief, Disease, Lushery, Decrepitude, & More. For Young and Old Alike.” The idea of writing a self-help book came slowly to Burroughs, but anyone who has read the memoirist’s previous work knows he’s familiar with the turbulence in the subtitle. “Yes, I’ve got some experience with pretty much all of them,” he said in a recent conversation. “I’ve had some close calls.” The author of “Running With Scissors,” “Dry” and “A Wolf at the Table” will be at Books and Books at the Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale on Saturday from 4 to 6 p.m. to discuss and sign his new book. Tickets are $5, free with the purchase of the book ($15). Info: 954-262-0234, MOAFL.org.
No one will look sideways at you for wearing Superman pajamas on Saturday at Tate’s Comics, where Free Comic Book Day festivities will run from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Dozens of titles, from SpongeBob to Prince Valiant and Archie to Judge Dredd, will be available at this annual great-for-all-ages event. Costumed characters will turn up throughout the day, including the indefatigable 501st Legion of Star Wars troupers. Tate’s is at 4566 N. University Drive, Lauderhill. Info: 954-748-0181, TatesComics.com.
CINCO DE FAMILIA
Cinco de Mayo is like St. Pat’s: What are we going to tell you that you don’t already know? You’ve got your place, where they’ll pour tequila and mariachi into the wee hours. But if you need a different kind of party, something that will appeal to both you and your young kids, check out Gulfstream. Such time-honored holiday traditions as a maypole and a taco-building station highlight free family-style Cinco de Mayo festivities at the Village at Gulfstream Park (901 S. Federal Highway, Hallandale Beach) from noon to 8 p.m. Sunday. Face-painting, arts and crafts, and live entertainment complete the afternoon. From 5 to 11 p.m., Gulfstream’s iconic walking ring will be turned into a Mexican block party, with food and drink specials, live music, giveaways and free rides on a mechanical bull. Did we mention the drink specials? Admission and parking are free. Info: 954-378-0900, TheVillageatGulfstreamPark.com.
HELLO? THINK McFLY
Sorry, again on the parenthood tip: The weekly free Friday movie in the ArtsPark in Hollywood is that graying cultural touchstone "Back to the Future," still fun after all these years and the answer to the kids' deadpan sigh whenever you refer to your "flux capacitor." Movie starts at 8 p.m. Blankets and picnic baskets encouraged. Info: VisitHollywoodFL.com.
Sergent Garcia did his basic training in Paris as a guitarist for the ‘80s-‘90s punk outfit Ludwig 88, fueled then by an affinity for the Clash and the Ramones. Later he made the inevitable sideswipe of DJ culture, dabbled in reggae and Caribbean sounds before settling most recently on a boisterous Latin cross-pollination that he has called “salsamuffin.” The 2011 album “Una y Otra Vez” shows the influence of trips to Colombia, with contributions from members of Bomba Estereo, La-33 and La Mojarra Electrica. Joe Strummer would approve. Reserve your spot on the dance floor now for Garcia and band’s Saturday performance at PAX (337 SW Eighth St., Miami). Tickets: $20. Info: 305-640-5847, PAXMiami.com.
TENTH AVENUE FREEZE OUT
What to expect when former baseball star Mike Piazza takes the stage for a cameo appearance Friday night in Miami City Ballet’s production of George Balanchine’s “Slaughter on Tenth Avenue”? We just saw him at a single rehearsal, but he was very good. He has the cool swagger of his gangster role down pat, and the accent is pure Tony Soprano, by way of Lasorda. MCB’s Program IV (Jerome Robbins’ “Dances at a Gathering” and “Slaughter on Tenth Avenue”) will be performed 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday at the Arsht Center (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami). Piazza will appear Friday only. Tickets: $20-$175. Info: 305-929-7010, ArshtCenter.org, MiamiCityBallet.org.
BOYS TO MEN
The Pet Shop Boys will rotate classic tracks such as “West End Girls” and “Always on My Mind” with songs from a new album, “Electric,” when they hit the Fillmore Miami Beach on Sept. 12. Tickets cost $59.50 and go on sale Friday at 10 a.m. at LiveNation.com and all Ticketmaster outlets. “Electric,” due for release July 15, includes eight new songs from the dance-pop duo, as well as a cover of Bruce Springsteen's 2007 anti-war anthem “Last To Die.” The album was produced by Stuart Price, known for work with Madonna and the Killers. In a press statement, band members Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe said, “ ‘Electric' is very much set on the dance floor. Our latest album often evolves as a response to our previous album and, whereas 'Elysium' had a reflective mood, 'Electric' is pretty banging!” More info: FillmoreMB.com.
OZZY FOR $19
When tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday for the July 31 concert by Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath at the Cruzan Amphitheater in West Palm Beach, you’ll find a special $19 deal for general-admission lawn seats. That offer will be available for one week, promoters say, after which those tickets will go up to $25. The 64-year-old Osbourne is said to be in fine form on the tour, which includes Black Sabbath originals Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler. Along with classic metal anthems such as “Iron Man,” “Paranoid” and “Psycho Man,” the trio is performing songs from their forthcoming album, “13,” due for release June 11. Get tickets at LiveNation.com and all Ticketmaster locations. Andrew W.K. is the opener. More info: BlackSabbath.com.
MORE SHINY BLACK METAL
South Florida’s former Spooky Kid, Marilyn Manson, continues to find ways to produce shock and awe, now as a face of the luxury French fashion house once known as Yves Saint Laurent (now Saint Laurent Paris). I mean, really? Manson will package new music from his 2012 release, “Born Villain,” and old outrages such as “The Dope Show” and “The Beautiful People” at the Fillmore Miami Beach on July 21. General admission tickets cost $45.50 and go on sale 10 a.m. Friday at the box office (1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach), LiveNation.com and all Ticketmaster outlets.
Acclaimed young guitarist Gary Clark Jr. (above), Jimmy Cliff, Barenaked Ladies, Cheap Trick and Kendrick Lamar are among the top acts still to come at SunFest in West Palm Beach this weekend (SunFest.com) … Country star Sara Evans is the 8:30 p.m. headliner as the Seminole Tribe of Florida celebrates the 117th anniversary of the Big Cypress Reservation with a all-day festival on Friday (BigCypressCelebration.com) … Romeo Santos, once of Aventura (the band), heats up Hard Rock Live Friday night (MyHRL.com) … Former “Saturday Night Live” star Jon Lovitz brings smarm and charm to Magic City Casino in Miami Friday night, followed on Saturday by “SNL” protege Rob Schneider (MagicCityCasino.com) … Amber Leigh is at Boston’s in Delray 2-5 p.m. Saturday (BostonsontheBeach.com) … Elvis Crespo, offers the still infectious “Suavemente” and more on Saturday at Seminole Casino Coconut Creek (SeminoleCoconutCreekCasino.com) … The New River Middle School Jazz Band is among the groups booked for the free SunTrust Jazz Brunch 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday on the New River in Fort Lauderdale (FortLauderdale.gov) … The cooler-than-thou Jimmy Cavallo Quartet is scheduled at Blue Jean Blues in Fort Lauderdale Monday night (BlueJeanBlues.net) … The Joy Formidable brings a Welsh indie aesthetic to the Culture Room Tuesday night (CultureRoom.net) … Alkaline Trio uncrates its gloomy rhythms at Revolution Live on Wednesday (JointheRevolution.net) … Grammy-winning, Madrid-born rocker Alejandro Sanz is at AmericanAirlines Arena on Thursday (Ticketmaster.com) …