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Boise does Bowie: Record Exchange hosts live community tribute for beloved icon

After the death of David Bowie in New York City on Sunday, Jan. 10, numerous posts on Facebook as well as conversations among friends and strangers made it clear that the loss hit hard for music and culture lovers in the Treasure Valley. The iconic Boise music store, The Record Exchange, became a place for people to gather and grieve for Bowie while celebrating his particular, eclectic, unfailingly stylish genius.

“What was interesting for us was how many people came to the store on the Monday after he died. It was like they didn’t know where else to go. We were it,” said Chad Dryden, the store’s marketing and promotions director. “It was a strange and beautiful thing.”

The Record Exchange played 13-and-a-half straight hours of Bowie that day and quickly sold out of “Blackstar,” Bowie’s 25th album, released on his 69th birthday, two days before his death.

The Record Exchange has restocked its Bowie offerings and will continue to be a place where fans can congregate. The store will host “Boise Does Bowie,” a tribute event for the community at 6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 28, 1105 W. Idaho St.

Local musicians, including Davey Jones and the Spiders from Bars (a local Bowie cover band), Sun Blood Stories, a.k.a. Belle and Marshall Poole, will perform an all-Bowie program. The River’s Tim Johnstone, surely one of Bowie’s biggest fans in the Valley, will emcee.

The Record Exchange has hosted birthday bashes before for musicians including Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen and others, but this will be the store’s first memorial event, said Dryden.

“It felt fitting, given the fact that Bowie reached so many different types of artists and so many people look at him as an influence,” he said.

Tyler Walker plays guitar in Davey Jones and the Spiders from Bars (David Jones was Bowie’s real name. Spiders from Mars was one of Bowie’s backup bands from the early 70s). The band members all play in other Boise bands, including Lounge on Fire and Buckskin Bible Review. The Bowie project was meant as a “one-off,” said Walker, a “musician’s challenge among friends.” The band learned 15 Bowie songs over a couple months and played one show at Neurolux the day after Thanksgiving, 2015. Being called upon unexpectedly to play the in-store show is filled with “bittersweet excitement,” said Walker.

Hearing Bowie’s “Rebel Rebel” as a kid was the inspiration that made Walker want to pick up a guitar, he said. When Bowie died, people sent condolences, “like a family member had died.”

When the band first got together last summer to start rehearsing, members made a list of “must play” Bowie songs. That initial list would have filled more than two hours. Band members managed to distill the playlist down to about 40 minutes for The Record Exchange show, a mix of classics, but also a few surprises, said Walker.

The concert is free and all ages are welcome.

Archie’s Place will provide the food. The store will host a Bowie-related raffle. Anyone who comes in Bowie-themed costume will be eligible to participate in a special drawing.

Women’s and Children’s Alliance seeks Stein award nominations

Each year, the Women’s and Children’s Alliance in Boise recognizes a Treasure Valley resident who has made a positive impact on the advancement of women. The Joyce Stein Memorial Award is given in memory of Boisean Joyce Ann Stein, a long-time supporter of the WCA. The award, said Executive Director Bea Black, is the highest honor bestowed by the WCA.

The WCA welcomes nominations from individuals, businesses and organizations. The nominee does not have to be distinguished by title or office, say organizers, but distinguished by his or her efforts on behalf of women. Find a nomination form online at wcaboise.org. Contact Bea Black at bblack@wcaboise.org for more information.

Stein was a founding member of the Women’s Center that began meeting in 1973 to discuss women’s issues in the basement of the YWCA (predecessor of the WCA). The group determined that domestic violence was a serious problem in the local community. This led to the YWCA’s — now WCA’s — mission to eliminate violence as well as sexism. After Stein’s death in 1979, the organization named its highest award in her memory and has awarded this special recognition every year since 1980. Former Ada County Prosecutor Greg Bower received the Stein award in 2015. Find a full list of past recipients online at wcaboise.org.

Idaho Women’s Charitable Foundation hosts a gathering

The members of the Idaho Women’s Charitable Foundation pool their investment dollars to make sizable grants to nonprofit organizations working in the areas of human services, education, health, the environment and the arts. The organization is hosting a gathering, 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28, at Headwaters Wealth Management, 401 W. Front St., to share more about its work and to engage new members. The event is free and open to the public. RSVP online at http://www.idahowomenscharitablefoundation.org/home.aspx or call 208-343-4923.

Did you read ‘Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant’ by New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast?

If you’re a Roz Chast lover (and really, if you’re not, you should be, because she’s hilarious), stop by the free public Happy Hour Book Club. 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 27, at The Cabin, 801 S. Capitol Blvd. in Boise. Chast (who visits Boise Feb. 4 as part of The Cabin’s Readings & Conversations series) will not be there. But graphic novel narrative scholar, creator and Cabin staffer Catherine Kyle will be. Kyle will lead a conversation about Chast’s memoir, a 2014 National Book Club nominee.

Boise State grad student featured in Audubon Magazine

The article, in the January issue of Audubon, features The Peregrine Fund’s gyrfalcon project and Boise State student Bryce Robinson, whose master’s thesis focuses on how climate change is affecting the diet of gyrfalcons on the Seward Peninsula.

The article, “What One Magnificent Predator Can Show Us About the Arctic’s Future” highlights the importance of studying the birds, as well as the difficulty of doing so — observing the cliff-dwellers in the middle of the Arctic tundra. Robinson spent most of two summers rappelling over cliffs to reach gyrfalcon “eyries,” or nest ledges.

Read the article and see stunning photographs online at www.audubon.org.

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