Larie V. Dasthuld

I'm writing in regard to Ben Greenman's article about monologuist John O'Keefe ("A Knockout Performance," December 4). While the article was a comprehensive tribute to the artist and his body of work, one vital piece of information was missing regarding his Miami performance. There was no mention of the Miami Light Project, the organization whose series O'Keefe was participating in.

Miami Light Project was one of the first organizations in Miami to present a high-caliber, contemporary-artists series. For the past three years artists such as Trisha Brown, Spalding Gray, and Laurie Anderson have been lured south by the siren song of Janine Gross and Caren Rabbino, founders of the Miami Light Project. Series artists consistently receive wonderful media coverage (as well as reviews) here in Miami, yet the local press continues to ignore the sponsoring company.

If New Times feels that John O'Keefe is worthy of three pages of editorial, then isn't it reasonable that the tireless efforts of Gross and Rabbino also deserve attention? After all, without them there would have been no story at all.

Nina Dunham

This year's South Florida Rock Awards appear to be a scam perpetuated against the local music scene ("And the Winner Is...," December 4). We now have a committee of key players dictating to all music fans who's best and who's not. This year the music fans -- the ones who spend their money to attend shows and purchase products -- were denied the opportunity to pick their favorites.

Instead the public was given a multiple-choice form and asked to select from those already chosen by the committee. On top of that, seven bands who accounted for more than 25 percent of the nominations had their names printed on the ballot as the stars of the event. Real fair to all the other nominees! Talk about stacking the deck!

I find it pathetic that out of more than a hundred bands in the area, a handful monopolized the nominations. Is it because those few are so much better? Or is the reason that the ballot was the result of power politics and lobbying: "You nominate my band and I'll nominate yours"?

Here are a dozen outstanding bands: Cryer, Young Turk, Roosterhead, Little Sister, Collapsing Lungs, the Funk, Amazing Grace, Razor Red, Kilmo & the Killers, Plastic Nude Martini, Crystal Heart, the Realm. None received a single nomination. Why? Is it because they're not part of the "in" crowd? Is it because they have a manager who refused to kiss ass? Don't tell me it's because they lack the talent.

Why does a country-and-western band receive so many nominations in rock awards? Please note that the original South Florida Rock Awards had no such category. Wasn't the category added last year just so that the Mavericks could win an award? Don't get me wrong, I believe that the Mavericks are one of the finest bands here. But sorry, no one in his right mind would have Garth Brooks compete against Axl Rose, so why is Raul Malo competing against Matt Kramer for "outstanding vocalist"?

The committee should create a special award for John Tovar: "outstanding lobbyist." Tovar not only did a magnificent job of getting his stable of bands nominations (including his country band, the Mavericks), but he got his bands Amboog-A-Lard and Marilyn Manson & the Spooky Kids the top billing on the ballot for the event.

Next we have committee member Glenn Richards, who seems to be using his local music show on WSHE as a forum to sway votes. It was very upsetting listening to him as he played songs by his favorites while encouraging listeners to vote. Let fair be fair. As a public personality, he has a responsibility for impartiality. Week after week on Richards's show, Tovar's bands, such as Amboog-A-Lard and Marilyn Manson & the Spooky Kids, get regular airplay, while most other bands are fortunate enough just to get played. Is there some kind of connection here?

Richard Kent

The December 4 letters to the editor express a wide range of political thought, yet all have one thing in common: a singular lack of thought given to the arguments of the authors before pen was taken in hand.

In reference to "The Primate Debate" (November 20), I was not aware that Matthew Block had been convicted of illegal activities. He hasn't. It seems almost Navarro-esque of the writers to condemn him as they do, given this fact. And if Shirley McGreal is in fact "as straight as an arrow," as Dr. William George claims in his letter, what has she to fear from surrendering her records, as she has been ordered to do by a court? Sorry, I forgot: the courts have no authority in this matter. As Dr. George says, it doesn't matter whether or not a crime has been committed. Block is guilty and McGreal is innocent because McGreal says so. End of discussion. What a crock of shit. (And just for the record, I am a supporter of the Digit Fund and rather fond of great apes. I also happen to be fond of such things as the U.S. Constitution and due process.)

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