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[whitespace] Goodbye Gangsters

Long-running KZSC ska show broadcasts final episode Saturday afternoon

By David Espinoza

A FTER THREE GLORIOUS years of mischief and some occasional mayhem, KZSC DJs Mica Ross and Adam Levin are putting Gangsterbop to rest. Set to go off the air after Saturday's extra-long show, 2:30­6pm, Gangsterbop concludes, Ross and Levin say, with a spectacular grand finale--details of which cannot be disclosed, but might include fireworks, the pope or skanking monkeys. Rumor has it that Levin, also el queso grande of Lollipop Productions and Random Order Records, is being upped to "Don" Adam Levin in the two-tone mafia, while Ross is planning to become a professional N.W.O. wrestler before entering the world of politics.

But seriously, the show is easily one of the longest-running, most successful student-led productions at KZSC. Inspired by another KZSC show called Ska Radio Santa Cruz, Levin got on the ball quickly, volunteering at the station during his second quarter at UC­Santa Cruz and debuting Gangsterbop in the spring of '97 on the "donuts and coffee dammit!" time slot of 3-6am Mondays. Bloodshot eyes don't seem so bad when you have company, though, and Levin enlisted boy wonder Mica Ross, an SC native, to co-host the show. The show soon found a permanent home on Saturday afternoons.

Not a pair to be confined simply to spinning CDs by Reel Big Fish and Hepcat, Levin and Ross soon discovered the joys of live broadcasts, having bands play either at the station or at Music Art Recording Studios (M.A.R.S.) in Aptos. Needless to say, the first live recording on Gangsterbop with the San Jose­based Monkey didn't turn out so well.

"We were hanging mics from the ceiling because we didn't have enough mic stands," Levin says. "It was absolutely ridiculous. We had no clue what we were doing."

A little more than two years later, Gangsterbop has hosted some 25 live performances from bands such as the Siren Six, Unsteady, the Hippos and, of course, Slow Gherkin. In 1998, Levin and Ross produced Live From M.A.R.S.--a compilation of live performances from 11 bands. After countless pledge drives, the dynamic duo have decided to take the last two quarters off to focus on school and future careers.

"I still love the show and I've had so much fun doing it, and I know Mica has, too," Levin says. "It was just time to end it."

Y2K Cabaret

So you're wondering what to do now that the collapse of Western civilization didn't materialize and everyone has to go back to work? Perhaps, attend a cabaret? In a tribute to the new century--or something to that effect--In the Aisles Productions and S.C.A.M. presents 7 Days After: A Postapocalypticabaret at the SC Vets Hall Friday. Rebecca Wolff of In the Aisles says that it's a modern take on an old form of entertainment, featuring improv and scripted acts from hip-hop to a PG-rated stiptease, experimental music, comedy, film, glam and glitter.

"It'll be big and fun, loud and obscene," she says.

The show starts Friday at 8pm, and tickets are $5-$10. One last thing: Attendees who arrive sporting their most extravagant duds will get a discount if they hit a 10 on the "fabulous" scale. For more info, 818.9834.

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From the January 5-12, 2000 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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