James Ford



Guitar manipulator Davis Salisbury of Grand Banks twists feedback into a melodic “stew of droning.” He’s had people come up after a gig and say, “I have no idea how you did that,” he said. “And I’m not always sure how I did it either, and that’s part of the point.” ImagecCourtesy of The Bridge PAI

The intermittent trajectory of brilliant drone duo Grand Banks

Grand Banks might be one of Charlottesville’s best-kept secrets. The duo of guitarist Davis Salisbury and keyboardist/singer Tyler Magill have been playing together for over 10 years, yet its discog-
raphy amounts to a handful of CD-Rs, and performances and recordings can go on hiatus for years at a time. But when Grand Banks gets together, dedicated followers anticipate some of the most transcendent, satisfying musical experiences around.

The Garage is in the midst of a Kickstarter campaign to make improvements after a car backed through one wall of the venue. Image: Tom Daly

Cruise control: The Garage gets big love on Kickstarter

The loose community around The Garage suffered a shock in mid-September, when an elderly driver, departing from the funeral home, accidentally kept her car in reverse and backed through one of The Garage’s brick walls. Thankfully no one was injured, but The Garage now has a gaping, cartoon-like hole where its south face used to be.

Golden Glasses new release, Your Chance to Win, combines serious talent, jazz chops and infomercial topics in a tongue-in-cheek delivery. (Publicity image)

Single vision: Steve Snider views the world through Golden Glasses

Steve Snider laughed when I asked him to list every Charlottesville  band he’s played in over the years. “There’s like, more than a dozen,” he said. “I’m not totally sure I can even name them all.” Among the most memorable are the jangling indie-rock of the Fingerpainters, the yelping keyboard-punk of Cataract Camp, the anthemic […]

Frank Fairfield makes a quiet return to the Downtown Mall

Frank Fairfield makes a quiet return to the Downtown Mall

Old-time-music enthusiasts who missed Frank Fairfield‘s appearance in town two weeks ago, as well as fans eager for a second helping, are in for a pleasant surprise. We spotted the distinctive Fairfield — hard to miss, with his vintage suite, pomade-ed hair, and a mustache worthy of Daniel Day-Lewis in There Will Be Blood — […]

Jim Waive plays a fictional Jim Waive in My Fool Heart, alongside an all-star cast of locals and legends.

My Fool Heart starring Jim Waive gets a long-awaited screening

“There’s been a lot of Charlottesville movies,” Jeffrey Martin said, “but this one is about Charlottesville.” He’s talking about My Fool Heart, a feature film directed by Martin and produced by his wife Lucinda Buxton, which has been in production locally for the past three years. The couple recently relocated to San Francisco, but Martin is back in town […]

Charlottesville’s chapter of Home Movie Day will participate in the simultaneous viewing of personal film footage on Saturday, October 20. Photo: Steven Villereal
image courtesy of Steven Villereal

Home Movie Day moves Downtown for its 10th anniversary

Cameras are more widely available than they have ever been. There are estimates that 10 percent of all of the photographs ever taken were shot in the last year. 16mm and Super 8 may not have been as clean-looking or as professional as the 35mm film used in feature films, but it was cheap and […]

Actor Matthew Lillard will present his directorial debut, Fat Kid Rules the World. Photo courtesy of the Virginia Film Festival.

The Virginia Film Festival hits the quarter-century mark

In Charlottesville, the arrival of fall means growing excitement for the Virginia Film Festival, one the finest annual events our city has to offer (Full disclosure: this writer was once an employee of the Virginia Film Festival.) This November marks the Festival’s 25th year, and as in past years, four of Charlottesville’s theaters, and many satellite locations, will dedicate four days to round-the-clock screenings and events.

Former local visual artist finds a second career in theater

Former local visual artist finds a second career in theater

On Friday, October 5th, the touring DIY Theater troupe Eternal Cult will present Rabbit: an Original Rabbit Tragedy at the Haven. Eternal Cult, based in Minneapolis, are just one of dozens of DIY theater organizations that have sprung up across the country in recent years, putting on self-penned plays with hand-made sets and costumes, touring […]

The Melvins are on the move, playing 50 states in 51 days to set a Guiness World Record.  (Publicity photo)

The Melvins lighten up and break a record

For almost 30 years, The Melvins have been playing their own peculiar brand of rock ’n’ roll. While their early sound was reminiscent of contemporaries like late-period Black Flag and the Butthole Surfers, The Melvins soon found their true calling by playing their songs half as fast and twice as heavy, regressing Black Sabbath-style metal […]

Roanoke rockers Eternal Summers return to the Tea Bazaar

Roanoke rockers Eternal Summers return to the Tea Bazaar

The Roanoke-based band Eternal Summers haven’t been around long, but they’ve been busy, releasing two EPs, two full-length albums, and a handful of singles and compilation appearances in just over two years. Nicole Yun’s catchy, somber punk anthems are a perfect match for Daniel Cundiff’s exuberant, energetic drumming, and they’ve built a passionate fanbase both […]

Downtown Library screens classic campaign documentary

Downtown Library screens classic campaign documentary

The 1993 documentary The War Room captures a transitional moment, not only in American politics, but also in popular media. Shot during Bill Clinton’s 1992 Presidential campaign, by Chris Hedegus and legendary documentary filmmaker D.A. Pennebaker (of Bob Dylan’s Dont Look Back fame), the film is a snapshot of the US political sphere, taking place […]

The Board of Architectural Review approved this design, a modified version of the original, to be painted over the deteriorating mural at 513 W. Main St.

Matt Pamer design gets approved for West Main Street mural

The Charlottesville Mural Project, launched by Ross McDermott in 2011, has taken on the task of beautifying the city through a series of public murals, with the goal of producing two a year. They’ve already brightened Monticello Avenue with Avery Lawrence’s colorful mural of interlocking hands on the north face of the Ix Building, as […]

The Whiskey Jar doubles down on its live music offerings with a trio of residencies. Photo: John Robinson.

Reclusive Erik the Red signs on for a residency

When The Whiskey Jar opened in February at the west end of the Downtown Mall, it came as something of a surprise. After all, Escafé had held down that spot for 17 years and several owners, before a recent relocation. Seven months later, The Whiskey Jar has become a reliable regular destination for many Mall-goers. […]