Interview with Mark Potter, P.O.S.'s kidney donor

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Courtesy of Mark Potter
Mark Potter rests after surgery

Last Thursday, Stefon Alexander, otherwise known as P.O.S., received a much-needed kidney transplant from his childhood friend, Mark Potter. Potter said the process started last June, just over seven months after P.O.S. canceled his We Don't Even Live Here tour and announced his need for a new kidney. After months of extensive compatibility testing, it was decided that Potter was an appropriate match.

Both surgeries were successful. Potter, a digital media strategist and photographer, is currently recovering at home and expects to return to work next week. For now, he's moved his bed to the living room and is resting in the company of Game of Thrones. Though P.O.S.'s recovery is expected to take much longer, he appears to be in good shape. According to Lazerbeak, "the kidney is currently functioning the way it's supposed to, and he's feeling better mentally/physically than he was before the surgery."

On Wednesday afternoon, we chatted with Potter about his recovery, his relationship with P.O.S., and the benefits of live organ donation.

See also:
Update: P.O.S. feels like "new dude" after kidney transplant

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Bob Dylan's oft-slighted '80s output gets new life on covers album

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Photo by Tony Nelson
Craig Finn is just one of the artists featured on the new compilation of Dylan covers

The music of Bob Dylan has always set up well to be reinterpreted and reworked by other bands and artists. Some of the most beloved Dylan songs of all time are actually cover versions, made indelible by musicians (Peter, Paul and Mary, the Byrds, Jimi Hendrix, Manfred Mann, George Harrison, PJ Harvey, etc...) who all came by the music second hand. It speaks to the depth and breadth of Dylan's timeless catalog that each new generation continues to draw inspiration from the Bard from the North Country.

On March 25, an entire album of covers will be released that will shine a spotlight on Dylan's oft-disparaged decade of the '80s, with a series of new interpretations of Bob's songs by modern artists like Built to Spill (hear their version of "Jokerman" below), Blitzen Trapper, Deer Tick, Elvis Perkins, Glen Hansard, Bonnie "Prince Billy," Aaron Freeman of Ween & Slash (!!), and many others, including two musicians with local ties, Craig Finn and Chastity Brown.

See Also: Bob Dylan's "The Times They Are A-Changin'" turns 50: How much has actually changed?

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Purple Rain-inspired African film seeks funding

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Have you ever wondered what Prince's Purple Rain would look and sound like filtered through an African lens and the Tuareg-language? Well, you now have the chance to fund that distinctive film through Kickstarter, as the first Tuareg-language fiction film, Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai (humorously translated as Rain the Color of Blue With a Little Red In It), is seeking contributions to help their artistic cause.


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Drone Not Drones unveils lineup for 28-hour concert at the Cedar

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Photo By Emily Utne
Low is just one of the bands set to take part in the 28-hour Drone Not Drones performance

Back in December when Gimme Noise last talked with Luke Heiken, the man behind Drone Not Drones, he mentioned that plans were in the works for a live 28-hour Drone-In performance at the Cedar Cultural Center.

Now that intriguing, one-of-a-kind show is beginning to take shape, as the Cedar just announced that the Drone Not Drones performance is set to take place on February 7 and 8. A long list of talented Minnesota music luminaries set to take part in the day-long drone fest has been revealed, with the groundbreaking performance serving as a benefit concert for Doctors Without Borders.

See Also: Luke Heiken is the mind behind Drone Not Drones


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The Cedar to host benefit concert for West Bank fire victims

Categories: Good Cause
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Photo courtesy of Red House Records
Spider John Koerner is one of the acts set to perform at the benefit

In the aftermath of the tragic and devastating New Year's Day fire at 516 Cedar Avenue that took the lives of three residents of the apartments -- while displacing the survivors and also destroying the Otanga Grocery Store -- the West Bank and Cedar-Riverside community is coming together to support and assist those affected by the fire.

The Cedar Cultural Center has just announced plans to partner with Augsburg College and KFAI Radio to host a benefit concert for the victims of the fire. It is scheduled to take place at the Cedar on Friday, January 24.

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Astronautalis and Sims re-team for Bridge Foundation benefit

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Photo By Nicola Harger

Anyone who saw Astronautalis and Sims' rousing co-headlining show at First Avenue back in June has been waiting for the two MCs to announce another show together. Now fans have their chance to see them perform on the same stage once again, as they are set to play at the Garage, an all-ages club in Burnsville, on Saturday, January 11.

All proceeds from the show, which is sponsored by the Minnesota Music Coalition, will benefit the To The Bridge Foundation, a local nonprofit dedicated to supporting those struggling with addiction.


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Twin Cities artists pay tribute to the Clash's Joe Strummer in February

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Photo By Erik Hess
BNLX is one of the bands set to pay tribute to Joe Strummer

It has been nearly 11 years since the world lost Joe Strummer. But his lingering influence around the world hasn't diminished in the least. Here in Minnesota, we keep Strummer's restless spirit alive not only in the inspired songs that ring out in venues all over the Twin Cities and beyond, but also on a semi-annual night dedicated to his lasting memory and the songs that he left behind.

Turning Rebellion Into Money: A Tribute To Joe Strummer will once again rock First Avenue on Saturday, February 1, with a talented assembly of Minnesota artists and bands on hand to celebrate the music and memory of Joe Strummer.


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Over 50 artists remember Leah Rule on Rock for the Rules Vol. 2

Categories: Good Cause
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Leah and her husband Rob Rule
Last December, the Twin Cities lost a long-time pal and supporter in Leah Rule after her long battle with cancer. With her husband Rob Rule, she helped raise the profile of the Turf Club to its now-legendary status via the St. Paul Music Club, and she left behind a wonderful body of work expressed visually and in music. Her numerous musician friends banded together for a 13-track compilation titled Rock for the Rules, which helped raise money for her medical care.

Now, there's a much-larger collection of songs on the way via Rock for the Rules Vol. 2. At least 50 artists -- including Dillinger Four, Martin Devaney, Dan Israel, Germaine Gemberling, Rank Strangers, Kruddler, a previously unreleased Slim Dunlap track, and so many more -- are involved this time. The album will be unveiled on December 21, the first anniversary of her death.

See Also: RIP former Turf Club manager Leah Rule

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The Cedar unveils seven 416 Club recipients for 2014

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Photo By Erik Hess
Joe Horton is one of seven recipients of the 416 Club Commissions Program

The Cedar Cultural Center consistently delivers compelling, original performances on their intimate stage, in addition to the celebrated national and international acts who frequently perform there. In 2014, that experimental creative direction continues with a series of seven shows celebrating the innovative artistic vision of the worthy recipients of this year's 416 Club Commissions Program.


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Sue McLean tribute to be held at First Avenue in November

Categories: Good Cause
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Photo By Jeff Lipsky
Eric Hutchinson is just one of the artists set to pay tribute to Sue McLean at First Ave

Sue McLean helped shape and promote the Twin Cities music scene for nearly 40 years. And now, following Sue's sad passing in May after a courageous battle against cancer, the artists and the music community she treasured will have a chance to pay tribute to her and the numerous contributions she made to the local music scene with a tribute to Sue McLean at First Avenue on Saturday, November 23.


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