Exhibits and Performances

Tribute to the Clash

London Calling, by The Clash

Tribute to The Clash: Pre-Festival Rock Concert and FLEFF Kick-Off Party

A Benefit for the Cayuga Waterfront Trail

Friday, March 27, 2009.

Doors open at 8:00 p.m. music starts at 9:00 p.m.

Castaways, 413-415 Taughannock Boulevard, Ithaca

18 and over.

Tickets are $12 in advance (available at Castaways, The State Theater Box Office, the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce, and Maxie’s Super Club) and $15 the day of the show.

A spicy mix drawn from Ithaca’s local music scene will pay tribute to the legendary punk bank, The Clash. Each will put their indelible mark on the Clash’s music with their own distinctive styles—with no repeats. Ambient media screenwashes from festival partners Microcinema International will add cinematic seasoning to this FLEFF pre-festival event.

The Sex Pistols and The Clash defined the British punk era. The Pistols, with their barely contained anarchy marched quickly down the path to self-destruction, leaving a huge cultural mark, but surprisingly little in terms songs that people take seriously enough to still play.

The Clash, on the other hand, broke apart barriers between the punk and the pop, the aggressive and the melodic, the political and the festive. The Clash, like any good roots band, understood its place in rock n roll history, borrowing from the likes of Buddy Holly, Ray Davies, Pete Townsend, and Bob Marley to create a body of work that is still both listenable and listened to.

From early on, with their cover of Bobby Fuller’s "I Fought the Law and the Law Won," until their final sprawling masterpiece, "Sandinista", Joe Strummer and company helped define punk as political and made left wing politics tuneful, danceable, and fun, a needed shot in the arm as we entered the age of Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan.

The Clash predicted our current apocalypse, and after the album London Calling few fans would perceive supermarket shopping in quite the same way. The band produced two gold records, never won a Grammy, and left in its wake a musical spirit that lives on every time a group of kids gets together with a drum kit, bass, and guitar. This Castaways show will recreate that spirit, a spirit especially needed at this current uncharted moment of anxiety and possibility.

The whole extravaganza benefits the development of the Cayuga Waterfront Trail, a new recreational and healthy lifestyle initiative to improve our county’s lake access. A unique partnership between the City of Ithaca and the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce, the six-mile paved trail is suitable for everything from walking to rollerblading to biking to hiking and showcases Ithaca’s best natural resource—Cayuga Lake.

The Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce supports the City of Ithaca’s plans for a Waterfront Trail. It has partnered with the city in the Trail Initiative for five years, raising $225,000. The chamber of commerce believes the trail enhances local business, stimulates tourism, increases public use of public areas, has high aesthetic appeal, and contributes to the overall quality of life in Ithaca.