Exponential Records goes international, the Tejano Conjunto Festival wants your writings and art, and Limelight and the Ten Eleven celebrate

Have you ever heard a bad bossa nova? I haven’t. That’s what I realized listening to the first few seconds of “Evaporar” (“To evaporate”) by 19-year-old Brazilian Pazes (Lucas Febraro). The alternative bossa song (which you can download at exponential.bandcamp.com/album/the-southpaw-ep) is part of the mostly electronic The Southpaw EP, to be released on February 15 by local indie label Exponential Records (run by Mexican With Guns’ Ernest Gonzales). While the label is opening its doors to international acts, it is still mostly comprised of local artists, including the recent addition of SA’s Nick Ruiz’s The Empireal Formula. He’ll be putting out an EP later in the year, but you can hear his remix of James Blake’s “Limit To Your Love” at antipop.net/promo/Limit_To_Your_Love_The_Empireal_Formula_Remix.mp3. You can find most albums (a few of which are also available on vinyl and CD) on iTunes, or you can download them directly at exponential.bandcamp.com.

A quick Tejano Conjunto Festival update: event organizer Juan Tejeda is now looking for conjunto-related writings for possible publication in this year’s TCF magazine. The event will be held at the Guadalupe Theater and Rosedale Park on May 10-15. He’s looking for “poems, short stories, scholarly articles, interviews with conjunto artists, your favorite conjunto recuerdos, etcetera.” The deadline for submissions is March 2. And remember that the contest to design this year’s official TCF poster is open until February 18, with the winner taking $1,000 (there’s also a few bucks for runners-up). If you’re an artist or graphic designer, go to guadalupeculturalarts.org/xicanomusic/tcfcontest.htm for rules and guidelines.

February is apparently a very good month for opening a music venue: Two local clubs are celebrating anniversaries this weekend. First, a big, loud “Happy Birthday!!!!” to the indispensable Limelight, one of the city’s key music venues, now celebrating its fifth anniversary with a kickass show Saturday, February 12. The lineup includes Velcro Underground (DJs Barton and Smartypants), an acoustic set by Kelly Miller (of Middle Ground), We Leave At Midnight, Marcus Rubio & the Gospel Choir of Pillows, and Chris Maddin/Chuck Kerr (Kerr is the Current’s Art Director, and also drums for the GCOP and WLAM). Limelight is located at 2718 North St. Mary’s, and the door is only $3. Not to be outdone, the Ten Eleven (1011 Ave. B) celebrates turning three years old by hosting free shows on both Friday and Saturday. Friday’s bill is indie-centric and features Pillow Talk, We Leave at Midnight, Cartographers, Mission Complete!, and the Cardinal Health, while Saturday’s show starts heavy and gets heavier with Sohns, The Grasshopper Lies Heavy, Buho, Illustrations, and Tetra. Many happy returns.

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