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the Twin Cities

BEST LITERARY JOURNAL

Rain Taxi

In a time when most of America would rather watch reality television or talk about Britney's latest mishap than read a book, Rain Taxi is keeping the art of literary criticism alive. Recognized by the Alternative Press Awards for Best Arts & Literature for its reviews of fiction, poetry, and nonfiction, the Minneapolis-based quarterly is distributed in more than 250 locations nationwide and on the web. The magazine gives former English majors and book lovers a chance to relive lit class with its author interviews, feature stories, and reviews of works on the cutting edge of literature. Its recent spring edition included a feature on early 20th-century painter and poet Francis Picabia; reviews of Angel Wagenstein's Nazi-era novel Farewell, Shanghai; Paul Drummond's biography of a seminal psychedelic rock group, Eye Mind; poetry from Adrienne Rich and Mark Scott; and several graphic novels. For all its high-mindedness, Rain Taxi is always thoughtful without being pretentious. And between its presence at the Twin Cities Book Festival and its free reading series, which brings poets like Kent Johnson and Christina Davis to town, Rain Taxi's commitment to advancing the literary community is unquestioned. As poet Ron Silliman put it in 2003: "I have a dream. It's the idea that once each quarter, all of America's major metropolitan newspapers should publish...a genuinely good book review. I'm not thinking of the jokes that are the book review sections of papers like the San Francisco Chronicle or Washington Post, or even the dowdy advertisers' shill that is the New York Times Book Review, but one that genuinely explores the whole range of published work in the United States, and perhaps even beyond. I'm thinking of Rain Taxi."

BEST ACTOR James Craven

BEST ACTRESS Sarah Agnew

BEST ALBUM OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS Atmosphere, Strictly Leakage

BEST ALL-AGES VENUE The Garage

BEST AM RADIO PERSONALITY Dan Cole

BEST ART CRITIC Patricia Briggs

BEST ART GALLERY First Amendment Gallery

BEST BAND NAME Emerson, Lake and Lyndale

BEST BAND TO BREAK UP IN THE PAST 12 MONTHS The Hockey Night

BEST BLUES BAND The Butanes

BEST BLUES BAR Famous Dave's BBQ & Blues Club

BEST BOOK BY A LOCAL AUTHOR The Dog Says How, by Kevin Kling

BEST CHOREOGRAPHER Morgan Thorson

BEST CITIZEN-BASED MEDIA OUTLET The Uptake

BEST CLUB DJ Soviet Panda

BEST COMEDY Jerry Springer—The Opera

BEST CONCERT OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS (LOCAL) Doomtree Blowout at First Avenue

BEST CONCERT OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS (TOURING) M.I.A.

BEST CONCERT VENUE First Avenue

BEST CRAFT SHOW No Coast Craft-o-Rama

BEST DANCE CLUB The Front

BEST DANCE PERFORMANCE Zenon Dance Company fall season

BEST DANCER Anna Marie Shogren

BEST DIRECTOR Joel Sass

BEST FESTIVAL Twin Cities Pride Celebration

BEST FM RADIO PERSONALITY Kerri Miller

BEST HIP-HOP ARTIST Brother Ali

BEST JAZZ ARTIST Irv Williams

BEST JAZZ CLUB Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant

BEST JUKEBOX 331 Club

BEST KARAOKE Staraoke Karaoke at Grumpy's

BEST LIVE ARTIST Skoal Kodiak

BEST LOCAL MUSIC COMPILATION Foreclosure and Eviction

BEST LOCAL RECORD LABEL De Stijl

BEST MOVIE THEATER Riverview Theater

BEST MUSEUM Minneapolis Institute of Arts

BEST MUSEUM EXHIBITION "Frida Kahlo," Walker Art Center

BEST NEW BAND Gospel Gossip

BEST OPERA La Boheme

BEST OUT-OF-TOWN CHEERLEADER FOR LOCAL MUSIC WFMU-FM

BEST PINBALL SS Billiards

BEST PLACE TO BUY ART FROM A VENDING MACHINE Chambers Hotel

BEST PLACE TO BUY PUNK/METAL MUSIC Extreme Noise Records

BEST PLACE TO BUY USED DVDS CD Warehouse

BEST PLACE TO LEARN AN ART FORM Highpoint Center for Printmaking

BEST PLACE TO LEARN TO DANCE Zenon Dance School

BEST PLACE TO WATCH MOVIES OUTDOORS Walker Art Center's Summer Music and Movies

BEST PLACE TO WATCH MOVIES OUTDOORS AT A BAR Solera

BEST PUBLIC ART The Merit Wall

BEST R&B ARTIST The New Congress

BEST RADIO PROGRAM AFTER MIDNIGHT The Root of All Evil

BEST RADIO STATION The Current 89.3 FM

BEST RECORD LABEL (COMEDY) Stand Up! Records

BEST ROCK BAND Vampire Hands

BEST ROCK CLUB Turf Club

BEST SONGWRITER M.anifest

BEST STAGE PRODUCTION Peer Gynt

BEST THEATER FOR DRAMA Open Eye Figure Theatre

BEST TV NEWSCASTER Bill Carlson

BEST TV SPORTS ANCHOR Eric Perkins

BEST TV STATION ION Television: Channel 41

BEST TV WEATHERPERSON Paul Douglas

BEST VOCALIST (FEMALE) Laura Larson of Baby Guts

BEST VOCALIST (MALE) Mike Gunther