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A short set frustrated Cyndi Lauper and audience at Gay Pride Festival

By Sarah Quelland

POP ICON Cyndi Lauper headlined the 25th annual San Jose Gay Pride Parade and Festival last Sunday (June 11). Her late arrival to Discovery Meadow was the first sign that things weren't going well. Despite the crowd's overwhelming enthusiasm, Lauper's performance was disappointing. Taking the stage around 6:45pm (the event was scheduled to wrap up at 7pm), Lauper stepped out in a black sequined outfit wearing a plumed rainbow headdress and waving a decorated gay pride flag. She was definitely in the spirit of the day and seemed to have designed a set list specifically for a gay-pride celebration: "You Don't Know," "Disco Inferno," "Hey Now (Girls Just Want to Have Fun)" and "True Colors." Usually, Lauper performs with a live band, and its absence left her songs without substance. It was like Cyndi Lauper karaoke with a dance track, backup singers and even Lauper's own voice prerecorded supporting her own live vocals. At one point during "True Colors," she walked off stage while the song was playing. It was unclear what prompted her exit, but she did dance back onstage to complete the song. Though she was friendly and supportive, and the crowd loved her (they kept giving her presents, including a platinum-pink grass-skirt handbag, flowers and lots of shoes), Lauper did seem frustrated by the situation. Her set ran only six songs, and she skipped hits like "She Bop," "Time After Time" and "Change of Heart." Her performance at Shoreline Amphitheatre with Cher last August was far more satisfying.

Skinlab headlined a packed Cactus Club last Saturday (June 10). Machine Head guitarist Ahrue Luster even put in an appearance. Supporting the East Bay metal band were Sift, Broken Vision and True to Form (ManMade God had to cancel). KSJO listeners may be interested to know that Sloppy Joe is the drummer for Sift. Word is True to Form bassist Eugene "Huge" Meydbray left the band to play guitar with Moodfrye, and last Saturday Lucid bass player Michael "Cliff" Alcantara took on bass duties for True to Form. The band has yet to announce an official replacement.

Due to a misunderstanding, last week's column misrepresented the Abductors' lineup. I'd like to apologize to the band and let readers know that Simon Woodstock is not in the Abductors though the band does feature some former members of the Sketch/Party Casket crew. The Abductors will be performing at the Caravan tonight (June 15) and at the Usual tomorrow (June 16) with Flogging Molly.

Papa Roach is all over the place with last Saturday's (June 10) performance with Stone Temple Pilots at the grand opening of the Sacramento Valley Amphitheatre, this Friday's (June 16) BFD, the Vans Warped Tour (which stops by Pier 30/32 in San Francisco on July 1) and a stint with Korn and Powerman 5000 following that. The band is getting write-ups in national publications, including Rolling Stone and Alternative Press (and you'll notice the band's gracing Metro's own cover this week). In addition to its MTV presence, Papa Roach is getting attention from other networks as well. A date on Late Night With Conan O'Brien has been confirmed. The band's appearance is scheduled to air July 14. The contest letting fans choose between "Broken Home" and "Between Angels and Insects" is officially over. P-Roach plans to release "Broken Home" as its second single.

The Russian River Blues Festival will be held this weekend (June 17-18) at Johnson's Beach in Guerneville. This year's event includes the Funky Meters, Little Milton, Tommy Castro, Average White Band and the Bobby Murray Blues Band on Saturday, and Etta James and the Roots Band, Los Lobos, the Duke Robillard Band, Mighty Mo Rodgers and Angela Strehli on Sunday. Tickets are $45 per day or $85 for both days.

Insolence has a free early show sponsored by R 2 Cents at the Cactus Club the same night (June 19, 5-8:30pm). Call 408.580.9810 to win tickets.

PLAN AHEAD: Yerba Buena and others, June 16 at the Cactus; Salmon, Floppy Rods, Willie's Conception and Moyst, June 17 at the Cactus; Monkey and others, June 18 at the Cactus; Tommy Holmes, June 20 at the Usual; Alanis Morissette, June 22 at the Fillmore in San Francisco; Bob Dylan, June 24 at Shoreline; Ween, June 27 at the Warfield in San Francisco; Smash Mouth, July 3 at Discovery Meadow; Kiss and Ted Nugent, July 28 at Shoreline; the Who, Aug. 21 at Shoreline; Santana and Everlast, Oct. 20 at Shoreline.

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From the June 15-21, 2000 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2000 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

For more information about the San Jose/Silicon Valley area, visit sanjose.com.

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