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Watch: A Short Documentary About San Fran Legend Bambi Lake

Silas Howard on the Bambi Lake
Photo by Ana Grillo

Silas Howard's 'Sticks & Stones' is an intimate short doc about Bambi Lake, a notorious San Francisco transgender performer and entertainer.

We first realized the importance of Bambi Lake, when Silas Howard -- a former Tribe 8 guitarist who is now making documentaries -- created a Kickstarter campaign to film a video with Justin Vivian Bond singing the song "Golden Age of Hustlers" (watch the video here). Since then, Howard returned to San Franciscos's Polk Street to put Bambi on film.

The result is "Sticks & Stones," an intimate documentary about a song, a street, and a diva. In the short, Bambi takes us on a stroll down Polk Street, sharing anecdotes and the history behind her song, "Golden Age of Hustlers," which was written about her time as a street hustler in the mid-70's. She landed on Polk Street after a stint with the Cockettes and prior to regular gigs at the '80s & '90s punk venue Mabuhey Gardens.

Look out for Howard in the new season of Transparent. As he told Pitchfork recently:

"The team is amazing, and Jill Soloway, the creator, she's such a badass feminist. She's really taking risks and doing it different. Not just in talk, but bringing people in the writers' room who are friends of mine that I've known since the '90s from San Francisco from this whole era of spoken word and queer punk. So Ali Liebegott, one of the writers on the show, and then Our Lady J, who I know from New York and Justin Vivian and tons of friends who all performed in the same cabaret scene together. She's on the writing team... even on the set, my two location guys, they just look like regular guys, but they're East Bay punks! I felt like all of us weirdos were accidentally on this really big ass studio lot. It was a great vibe, it had a lot of support.

"And I actually got to bring in weird little talismans kind of in line with Bambi Lake and people from my music past. There's this really amazing singer and visual artist, Chloe, who passed away a few years ago. She was in this band called Transistor, she's a trans woman, she played through the '90s and stuff, [Tribe 8] played CBGBs with them. She set up all these organizations around HIV and trans activism. Anyway, I put up a photo of her in one of the characters' houses, right above Jeffrey's character, as a little history easter egg for those that know her."

Watch "Sticks & Stones" below:

Sticks and Stones; Bambi Lake (2015) from silas howard on Vimeo.

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