June 24, 2010

What's Up This Weekend? Special Comfest Edition

My lost weekend has arrived. I've always wondered what it would be like or if I would ever get to experience it. Now that it is happening a bit prematurely, I feel pretty good about it. I'm relaxed and looking forward to experiencing retirement at Comfest. Of course, I will be volunteering to do a clean-up and recycling shift Saturday night and early Saturday I will be doing a "copwatch" shift with my best friend and fellow retiree, Mac. I sincerely hope the "copwatch" will be extremely boring work but, whenever I'm with Mac at Comfest, I'll be enjoying myself. This year, I will be going as a journalist, taking pictures and notes for an article in cringe.com, so, in a sense, I will still be working but you better believe I will take some time to lie on a blanket in the grass and just soak it all in. I hope I get to see all of you there and that you will say "Hi" if you see me and remind me of your name if I don't say it. I apologize in advance for not remembering. I also hope that you all have signed up for volunteer shifts or will do so at Volunteer Central. Comfest is still the best thing we have in Columbus and everyone should do their part to make it happen. Remember, no glass or cans, don't park in the neighborhood and, this year especially, be discreet.

Thursday, Dick's Den has Derek DiCenzo and Benco presents Frog Eyes at The Summit. I reviewed their CD for the Invisible Hits Hour last Sunday and it sounded really interesting.

I'll begin each day of Comfest with my picks. OR-Off Ramp, G-Gazebo, M-Main/Bozo Stage, LA-Live Arts, J-Jazz, Solar-S.

Friday, Town Monster 2:15-OR, Lydia Loveless 2:55-G, Liquid Crystal Project 3:35-J, Sons of Gladys 5:00-M, No. 1 Cat 6:10-G, Moon High 7:30-OR, Max Power Trio 8:10-G, Ooh La Las 8:30-LA. My don't-miss pick-of-the-day is Foley 9:05-M, Flypaper 10:00-J. After Comfest, Nick Tolford is at Carabar, Jimmy Castoe is at Dick's and there is a Comfest Hootenanny with Megan Palmer, Eric Nassau and Jason Quicksall at Treehouse.

Saturday, be there early for Super Desserts noon-M, Derek DiCenzo 1:50-J, Megan Palmer 1:55-G, Trains Across the Sea 3:00-OR, Donna Mogavero 3:40-M, Cowboy Hillbilly Hippie Folk 4:55-G. It might not be a bad idea to position the blanket just outside Off Ramp from 4:45 to to close with the great line up of Flu Faker, The Receiver, Adult Fiction (who unfortunately appear to have changed their name to Dead Indian), Daycreeper and Mt. Carmel. Otherwise, Miss Molly 6:10-G, The Floorwalkers 6:15-M. My don't-miss pick-of-the-day is Hayseed at 7:05-S. Paul Brown 7:55-J, Nick Tolford & Co. 8:15-M. I'll be cleaning up but you can check out two bands that should have gotten in Comfest, Ghost Shirt and Bookmobile at Carabar, Moon High at Rumba, Dottie & Clyde and the Ooh La Las at The Shrunken Head, Love Culture and Lost Revival at Skully's and The Main Street Gospel at Treehouse. I'll check in after my shift to see if anyone is still in the hot tub at Lee's Chillaxin' and Jammin' after-party.

Sunday, it's really important to get there early, Joey Hebdo 11:30-OR, OpenheartART 11:40-LA, The Spikedrivers noon-G, The Randys 1:00-G, Couch Forts 1:50-S. My don't-miss pick-of-the-day is Old Hundred 4:00-G, Dane Terry 6:25-OR. If you are just not ready to quit you can pretend The Spikedrivers are the final headliners at nearby Park Street Tavern or go see Joey Hebdo at The Shrunken Head.

Monday through Friday, Christian Howes presents The Creative Strings Festival at Dick's and other locations. Go to Christianhowes.com for details. It's always good.

When we all come together / it feels like the world's gonna be allright
The Festival Song-Tim Easton

Happy Comfest! mark

June 17, 2010

What's Up This Weekend?

Bonnaroo was like an episode of Survivor for me. It began a couple freeway exits early with the torture of stop-and-go driving at one mile an hour for three and half hours just to get in. Then followed three days of a brutal afternoon sun and heat index of over 100 degrees, walking and standing around for 12 or more hours at a time and, as I dragged my carcass back to our campsite, repeatedly getting lost in the tent city maze. Yes, I had a great time. I enjoyed the camping and the music and the whole scene. When I got home, I noticed how civilization mesmerizes us with smooth trips in air-conditioned cars, back and forth on the same highways, up and down the same stairways and elevators to the same office with the same view, day after day. Not much thought or effort is really needed to find cold drinks, a hot, inexpensive, healthy meal, a private shower, a clean toilet, a temperate climate or mindless entertainment while ensconced in a soft, old couch. We can be anywhere in the world without leaving our den and hear any sort of music at the touch of our finger. At Bonnaroo I stood at 2 AM, bone-tired, near a stream of mud, shoulder to shoulder with an endless throng of young people and watched The Flaming Lips perform "The Dark Side of the Moon". At home, I was comfortably numb.

Thursday, tonight, The Spikedrivers do the happy hour at Rumba followed by Moon High and Mark Sims.

Friday, Gay Pride kicks off at Goodale Park and Wonder Twin Powers are there at 8 PM. Megan Palmer does the happy hour, without the Spikes this time, at Rumba followed by Woody Pines. Town Monster and Wolf Ram Heart are at Ravari, Dead Indians, The Obviouslies and Vug & the Stallions are at Carabar and Wet Darlings are at Ruby's. My friend Lee will be kept busy pickin' the mandolin at Woodlands Tavern (fka Thirsty Ear) where he plays with Grassinine joining the bill with Blind Corn Liquor Pickers and The Salty Caramels early (7PM) followed by his other band, Cowboy Hillbilly Hippie Folk.

Saturday, Flypaper does Gay Pride way too early, 12:30 PM at the Gazebo in Goodale Park, but it will still be fun. The Randys are at Dick's. Wonder Twin Powers is at Ruby's, Couch Forts is at Rumba and Anna & the Annadroids join a bunch of bands for a Rock the Cure breast cancer benefit at A & R in the Lifestyle complex on Neil Ave.

Sunday, there is a John Boerstler Benefit with many of his old and current bands at Rumba.

Monday, Carabar has Times New Viking, Psychedelic Horseshit and Cave.

Tuesday, Holly Golightly is at The Summit,

Wednesday, there is a Foley Pre-Comfest Review Show at Rumba which sounds like a good way to start the festivities.

The child is grown. mark

June 9, 2010

What's Up This Weekend? Special Bonnaroo Edition

I'm writing you all today because I'm Bonnarooing tomorrow. As a result, I won't be able to tell you what's up this weekend in Columbus but I can tell you what I will be trying to see in Tennessee based on this schedule which looks to be official. http://mindreader.bonnaroo.com/bonnaroo-2010-schedule.html Hopefully, I will discover a musical surprise somewhere along the line up.

In the meantime, if you enjopy reading my stuff, I wanted to take this opportunity to invite you to peruse what I've been writing for cringe.com including a massive article on the Nelsonville Music Festival and less daunting ones on Couchfire Collective's Agora 7 show at Junctionview Studios and the New Music Concert in the shelter house at Goodale Park. They all include photography which is my new modus operandi. I'm obviously not good with deadlines and my notes are piling up on stuff about Hookahville, The Neil Young/Beach Boy Tribute at Rumba, The Rama Lama Fa Fa Festival and The Last Party at Monkeys Retreat. Maybe I can tackle those during the car ride. As you might suspect they are not music reviews as much as they are my experiences written in my personal "style" so even though they are a little dated, I hope they are fun to read.

Thursday, tomorrow, is a travel day during which my mind will be at ease about the cats since I have a good friend house-sitting.

Friday, I want to see Trombone Shorty, Mighty Clouds of Joy, Carolina Chocolate Drops, She & Him, Steve Martin & the Steep Canyon Rangers, Tenacious D, some Flaming Lips and Black Keys.

Saturday, I want to see Baaba Mal, Norah Jones, Jimmy Cliff, The Avett Brothers, The Melvins, some Jeff Beck and John Prine, Stevie Wonder and Jay-Z.

Sunday, I want to see Colexico, Martin Sexton, Lucero and finish up with John Fogarty.

I hope you all have a beautiful and fun weekend in Columbus.

I'll Tennessee you in my dreams. mark

June 3, 2010

What's Up This Weekend?

In the continuing saga of man versus machine, my latest nemesis is the automatic garage door opener, which is anything but automatic. Now, I don’t mind so much the upstairs television losing vertical control and resisting the repeated pushing of the power button on the remote control because once I go to all the trouble of turning it on by pushing the button on the TV, I can always just listen to the sound and try to make some visual sense out of the flickering images. Nor is it too difficult, occasionally, having to open the back of the toilet to make sure the recalcitrant flapper has formed a seal over the flush valve after jiggling the handle. The electric garage door opener is a much crueler taskmaster. Like the other devices, there doesn’t appear to be any rhyme or reason to when it will work as expected. So I have to break into the garage and reprogram it each time it refuses to lift open. When it kept working for about a week, I hoped it was the result of exercising it regularly but I eventually realized that its performance problem was more mental than physical. In order to get my bike out this morning, I had to venture through the rain forest that is the small dew covered tree and tall weeds on the side of the garage and pound out the window with my fists, catching it before it crashes to the floor. Then comes the part that is gymnastically challenging, dangerous and ridiculous as I jump into the small, two by three foot rectangular opening, lower myself, head first, into the garage putting my hands on the pre-placed wooden stool and slowly attempt to do the splits upside down as I bring one leg to the floor at a time. I’m getting better at it with practice.

Thursday, tonight, Ghost Shirt does Dan Dougan's Listening Hour at the Gateway Film Center and Jim Maneri is at Dick's with a cavalcade of Columbus' finest jazzbos.

Friday, One of my faves from Brooklyn, Hamel on Trial, does an early $9.99 show at Rumba, Wholly Craft on N. High in Clintonville hosts the CD release of Super Desserts at 7 PM. Skully's has Mojoflo's CD release with The Floorwalkers and Stretch Lefty. Grassinine does "Guiness and Grass" at Byrne's, Bourbon St. has Dane Terry, Coltrane Motion and Wolf Ram Heart. There is a benefit at Circus for Alix Reese with Vug Arakas & the Stallions, The Razers and Stucco Jones.

Saturday, From Noon to 9 PM Monkeys Retreat, 1202 N. High, has its final party and sale, pot luck & grill, with music all day including The Mendelsonics at 5 and No. 1 Cat at 8. The Arts Festival in the Discovery District has The Randys at 1:20, This Is My Suitcase at 3:10 and Miss Molly at 4:55. Bourbon St. and The Summit tag team to present the Rama Lama Fa Fa Fest with what promises to be a great collection of underground "DIY" bands and Necropolis.

Me and my machine. mark