April 29, 2010

What's Up This Weekend?

Last Saturday night was a real smorgasbord of experiences. Started out at the Music In the Round in the banquet hall home of immigrant-German choirs, The Maennerchor. That's always a fun place to roam around and check out all the enormous beer steins, old photos and 19th-century interior decoration. Willie Phoenix, Eric Nassau and Heidi Howes performed. Heidi's operatic voice is just amazing. My companion and I left during the intermission to get some dinner at The Tip Top Kitchen and then walked in the drizzle to the new location for MadLab at 227 N. Third which had the Seeing Red art exhibition. The new quarters are much nicer but parking is a little more problematic. The new theater is awesome and I witnessed what is apparently a once-a-year performance by lovely, zaftig chanteuse Sarah Stout. Her renditions of old torch songs were a delightful surprise from a performer hitherto unknown to me. The next stop was Dick's for The Rick James Stone City Band's tribute to Sly & the Family Stone. Not only is that a mouthful, it was a clubful of people. How many bodies CAN they shoehorn into that bar? I couldn't count or even see all the members of the band most of whom could not fit on the stage. The joint was ready to explode with good vibes as everybody grooved to that treasure chest of Sly tunes. I sympathized with my companion's desire to stay and exonerated her from accompanying me when I had to leave to make an appearance at Ravari to introduce the Direct In promotional video. The Phantods were still performing their Gothic alt-rock and when I finally got the chance to speak to the packed house, I was so hyped-up on emotion about our project that I morphed into my angry-man mode, angry-at-who I don't know, and started yelling to the point where my voice started cracking even though I had taken care to lubricate it with a cold beverage. Well, the crowd response was enthusiastic and my compatriots loved it, so I guess I needn't be embarrassed but I was.

Thursday, tonight, Hells Fire Sinners at Circus, The Spikedrivers do the happy hour at Rumba and Wonder Twin Powers is at Thirsty Ear.

Friday, Circus has The Town Monster, Blastonaughts and The Loyal Divide returning from their new home in Chicago, Dick's has Brett Burleson, Alert New London is at the Newport, there is an "Erotic & Roll" at Ravari with Anna & the Annadroids, the Ooh La Las and the Cellar Hounds.The Floorwalkers do the happy hour at Rumba followed by Andy Shaw Band and Los Caminos. Skully's has The Receiver and The Lennon Orchestra presents a full night o' Beatles at the Thirsty Ear.

Saturday, Jim Maneri, Randy Mather, Josh Hill and Cedric Easton are at Dick's, Crime & Punishment do a benefit for Huckleberry House at Ruby's, Old Worlds is at Rumba, Long Tall Deb & the Drifter Kings are at Thirsty Ear and Willie Pooch makes a comeback at Vonn's.

Do Re Mi Fa So La Ti Do yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah mark

April 22, 2010

What's Up This Weekend?

flies by the corner of your eye
like the second hand rounding past a numeral
on a clock that appears to inform you
with all the predictability of a ghost.

I've developed the reflexes necessary
to immediately grasp the vanishing arm
and bravely allow myself to be pulled
into the dimension of imagination
where the elusive meaning
of the specter’s appearance
will be revealed.

Hence, when the words I had texted
beckoned me in a beguiling voice
to follow them to the piano
just as I was about to step into the shower,
I had to sit naked on the wooden bench
framed in the curtainless bay window
in order to capture this song for you.

Can’t wait but I will
Its late but I still want to see you

Can’t wait for the thrill
I feel when I finally get to hold you

The time will move ever so slowly
But I’m going to keep myself holy
The night is so dark and lonely
Your light is my one and only

Thursday, tonight, Dan Dougan's Listening Hour at The Gateway features
Whoa Nellie and ...Local Color? Really? Rumba has Black Swans Solo
with Jerry DeCicca, Eve Searls and Sam Brown. The Rumpke Mountain
Boys, Waterband and Cowboy Hillbilly Hippy Folk are at The Shrunken
Head and The Summit has This Is My Suitcase.

Friday, Miss Molly is at Dick's, Wolfgang Parker, Mors Ontologica and
Ghost Shirt are at Skully's, Adult Fiction and Vug & the Stallions are
at Treehouse and my pick of the week is the show at Rumba with The
Madison Square Gardeners and Aaron Tasjean.

Saturday, At 6 PM, I will be attending Music In The Round at the
Mannechor with Willie Phoenix, Heidi Howes and Eric Nassau. It
benefits the Flying Horse Farm which brings sick kids together with
horses that fly, I assume. You can still buy tickets at the door or go
to http://www.musicintheround.com/ . Dick's hosts the Sly & the Family
Stone tribute, Love Culture and The Lost Revival are at Skully's, Soul
Satyr does Thirsty Ear, You're So Bossy is at Treehouse, The Shrunken
Head has Vegas 66 and Miss Misery & Co. and Rumba has Playhouse and
Max Power Trio. Ravari has Six Gallery, Phantods, Stretch Lefty,
Karate Coyote and around midnight, yours truly, will introduce a
minute long video about "a bold new plan" for the new festival that
I've been working on with a great group of people. Don't blink or
you'll miss it.

Who you gonna call? Ghostbusters! mark

April 15, 2010

What's Up This Weekend?

I was out for a beautiful Spring day bike ride, tooling down the usually serene Walhalla Ravine, when from behind, I heard some kids shouting obscenities at someone referred to as "bitch". I didn't look back to check it out figuring it was probably just a group of kids verbally jousting with each other. But as what turned out to be just the two of them got closer, I realized that I was the "bitch" being challenged by their invective. They were riding one bike together and the mouthiest of the two looked to be about 12 years old with long greasy blond hair. He appeared to be having a grand old time verbally abusing me and the wicked smile on his face reminded me of the ultra-violent Alex of Clockwork Orange, except this was merely ultra-insolence. At first, I felt a twinge of animal instincts ranging from "run and hide" to "stand and fight" but I quickly regained my sunny-day equilibrium and engaged the young hooligans in a little friendly banter while allowing their slings and arrows to bounce off my shield of insouciance. "Alex" asked me "How fuckin' old are you?" and I calmly responded "57". When he observed, "That's really fuckin' old, Man.", I assured him that I was "hangin' in there." I think my calm demeanor either threw them off or bored them and they turned down a side street leaving me with a few more puerile insults. I was left with a feeling of relief that I wasn't their parents because if I had been, I would have gone Homer Simpson on them.

Thursday, tonight, is the Funny Money Benefit for Madlab with Matter of Planets, Cellar Hounds and Black Spyral Dancer.

Friday, Dick's has The Spikedrivers and they are taking donations for beloved-guitarist John Boerstler to help him cover some medical expenses. Muzzleloaders are at Ravari, the happy hour at Rumba starts with another Boerstler band, Hoodoo Soul followed by the evening show with Bucktown Kickback. Matt Monta & the Hot Coal Band and Jason Quicksall are at The Shrunken Head and Treehouse has Dottie & Clyde.

Saturday, Descendre descends on Dick's, Mors Ontologica has a double LP release at Ruby's. Gil Mantera's Party Dream celebrates the 2010 Spring Dream at Skully's and Wonder Twin Powers and Miss Molly are at Thirsty Ear.

Sunday, please stop by the The Shrunken Head from 5 to 9 for the Ben Hamilton Benefit with Eric Nassau & Friends, Grassinine, Adult Fiction and Two Cow Garage. Columbus Jazz All-star legend Gene Walker is at Dick's.

Tuesday is Tony Monaco B3 jazz night with Bobby Floyd and Dane Terry is at Treehouse.

I'm laughing at clouds
So dark up above
The sun's in my heart
And I'm ready for love

Lyrics by Jamie Cullum


April 8, 2010

What's Up This Weekend?

I feel like I found the most delicious Easter egg this past week. I was sitting on a bench in Skylab Friday night waiting to hear Andrew Graham and Swarming Branch, thinking "How can I keep doing the things I loved doing for Comfest?" when the thought occurred to me to create a data base of local music with a calendar, similar to what I worked with on the Entertainment Committee, but which could be accessed by the public. Well, once I cracked that egg open, it was like a damn broke loose and the ideas just kept coming. I didn't sleep a wink that night. I realize that there was a wind blowing through my life and I had the choice to either huddle up and let it flow around me or spread my wings and use it to fly. I had to leave in order to do something new but in order not to be the hypocrite who goes from being Supervolunteer to the Biggest Quitter, I needed to find a way to serve my community and Comfest from the outside. I left because I wanted to get the community to buy into Comfest and take responsibility for keeping things under control as opposed to closing early. Actually one of the great traditions of Comfest is relying on the crowd to behave and look out for each other. Now I'm free to spread that message. I want to be a model for people who come to Comfest, who aren't organizers but who are willing to do their part. I thought of name for us. Citizen Comfester. Just put your hand over your heart and repeat after me: "I pledge allegiance to the Community Festival and to the Statement of Principles for which it stands. I will not bring bottles or cans. I will pick up trash and recycle. I will not park in the neighborhood or trash it or bother the people who live there. I will volunteer. I will be cool, I will look out for others and help create an atmosphere of peace, love and happiness for all." It may not solve their growth problem, but isn't it a great way to try?

Thursday, tonight, Dan Dougan's Listening Hours at the Gateway Film Center's Black Box features Jesse Henry and Megan Palmer, The Floorwalkers are at Ruby's, Black Swans Solo with Jerry DiCicca, Andrew Graham and Milan Karcic at Rumba and The Thirsty Ear has Matt Monta & the Hot Coal Band.

Friday, Carabar has The Lindsay, Main St. Gospel and Adult Fiction, Mendelsonics and No. 1 Cat do the Happy Hour at Rumba followed by Lohio and This Is Your Suitcase. Jason Quicksall and Matt Monta are at The Shrunken Head and Low Men and Bookmobile are at Treehouse.

Saturday, Jesse Henry & the Royal Tycoons with Casey Velker do the happy hour at Rumba followed by Lollipop Factory's EP release with the The Phantods.

Sunday, The Summit has Surfer Blood and Tin Armor (S. B. pre-party at Bodega) and Moon High and Alwood Sisters are at Wild Goose Creative (BYOB).

Tuesday, Joey Hebdo & Friends are at The Shrunken Head and Dane Terry is at Treehouse.

Wednesday, Chris Howes is at Dick's and Oakhurst and Fox & Hounds are at Thirsty Ear. Oakhurst is from Colorado and they are worth checking out if you like 'grassy music.

I am now flying through the Infinite. mark

April 1, 2010

What's Up This Weekend?

Its been a rough week for me, suffering the guilt and regrets that come with second-, third-, fourth- and fifth-guessing my life-changing decision to retire from Comfest. And today my infamy reached the general public thanks to one of you, Dear Readers, who apparently turned The Other Paper on to my little venture into social media. My effort to "no-comment" the reporter was in vain but I can't complain too much about what she chose to quote although she mistakenly concludes that I was primarily concerned about "the upped security" as opposed to losing the night. The one line she did get from me on the phone was understandably misquoted. I actually said "Long live Calmfest". Its a homonym I made up to illustrate my feeling that Comfest will "sound" the same but it will be different. Hopefully, it will be calmer so that the organizers will feel they have gotten control of the growth and we can all learn to appreciate and enjoy this new incarnation of a tradition that we all love. In that spirit, here's a good quote from Sting's blog on the Huffington Post about ending the drug war. ""To me, it all adds up to a clear message of exactly the sort I've always tried to heed in my life: It's time to step out of our comfort zone and try something new."

The dearth of local music that I can recommend this week makes me feel like my musical cognition is disappearing already.

Tonight, Thursday, there is a WCRS SmplyLiving benefit at The Shrunken Head early and late with lots of local musical variety.

Friday, Couch Forts are at Carabar and Andrew Graham and the Swarming Branch are at Skylab.

Saturday, The Black Swans CD release is at Rumba.

Daisy, Daisy give me your answer do.
I'm half crazy all for the love of you. mark