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Friday, November 21, 2014

Once Upon A Time

O all you people who love to harken back. Back when the crux of Wisconsin and Western Avenues was known as the District Line and was where, if you were lucky,  your mother might have taken you to get a party dress or a winter coat. Who would have believed that Woodward and Lothrop, one of the bastions of the Washington Shopping Plate, and seemingly as permanent as the Capital itself would go the way of the dinosaur?


ALL of those local department local stores are gone. Dang.

A few years ago massive renovations of the District Line into something akin to Rodeo Drive left me out in the cold. I never go there anymore except when driving through on my way to Magruder's. One exception? I will go to the basement of Clyde's in Chevy Chase. (the "new" one which is almost 20 years old) This Saturday vintage rock will be brought to you by many a Whitman grad in The Vi-Kings, a band who shares my fondness for things gone by.
No cover!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Herndon Meets Squeeze Box

Hey you, Herndonites. Little Red and the Renegades will be rolling your way via the Ice House Cafe and Oyster Bar this Friday night. This might be a haul for denizens of DC, but you all in the Northern climes of the Old Dominion ought to be able to find your way there. Support your scene, Virginia!
A full bar and free music rocks.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Hey You Kids

These days movies about the harDCore local scene like "Salad Days: The DC Punk Revolution" and "Punk the Capital" are popping up like a fairy ring of mushrooms around the Beltway. One such film- "Positive Force: More Than a Witness" will be screening this weekend at St Stephen's with all proceeds going to inner city seniors- a positive thing indeed.

While reliving the past is a comfortable and sometimes wonderful place to be, we've still got music being made here and now: live and loud and in person. We've got active musicians that inspired the scene and, by the way, are kind of close to being seniors themselves. These people go back. Way back. Before Fugazi back. Just last week it was the Beatnik Flies show at the Quarry House and Marshall Keith and friends up at the mill. This Friday it'll be right here in town. John Stabb and the aptly named History Repeated will be kicking the line up with 7 Door Sedan, Spidercake and much more at Union Arts DC.

Please support this living thing we call music.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Ubangi Slickee Yacht Flies On the Loose this Weekend

Beware there is no sign for the Quarry House, but somehow people follow the clarion call to this basement den of iniquity where there is a plentitude of good beer, bourbon and music.The show this Saturday night featuring The Beatnik Flies and The Yachtsmen will indeed be a wild and wooly one, and the ONLY place to be for all Beatnik Flies, Yachtsmen. (and Slickee Boy fans)

Unless, of course,  you are up at the happening at the Hyattstown Mill with the Ubangis and Marshall Keith.

(Two places at once would work for me.)

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Upside Down DC Politics As Usual

The DC voter's guide came out in a timely fashion this year full of helpful information as usual. What was unusual was the DC flag was printed upside down. 


Even funnier was the short lived attempt to claim it was done on purpose "to engage the voter." That was soon followed by full admission that this was just what it was- a big boo-boo. 
(So DC as we like to say here.)

Anyway you look at it, DC politics often turn this town upside down. Stories about council spats, scandals, and misappropriated funds often make national headlines. Marion Barry, the once and future godfather of chocolate city, can always be relied upon to keep things real, but sometimes he makes the news without even trying.
Even without his honor running this year, our mayoral race is turning out to be anything but dull. What should have been an easy win for Muriel Bowser has turned into something of a political nightmare for her thanks to David Catania and Carol "the phoenix" Schwartz who has risen again after a long hiatus. WAMU held a lively forum back in October which might be one of my favorite debates ever. All three candidates involved came into the ring swinging with gloves off. If you are still on the fence, you might want to take a listen.

Washington might be besieged with some of  the worst traffic and is in third place for the most rats in the nation, but  I am happily astounded by how progressive our city has become about embracing personal freedoms such as gay marriage and loosening penalties for marijuana. It's also good to see the uptick in bicycle and river traffic- canoes and crews and kayaks everywhere. (I can remember a time when the Potomac was so polluted, we were told not to go near the water.)

Whatever your view point- please get out out on Tuesday and let it be known. We are the ones that make this city what it is- as much as we can without representation in Congress- but we are also the only ones who can change that. The best way to rock DC is to vote.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Song of the Month Refuses to Die

October's song "The Brain That Refused to Die" is DC's own spooky little number brought to you by the Slickee Boys. This song may live on as a digital download, or perhaps it's buried somewhere in your old vinyl collection, but these days, air play is rare. Still there's a good chance Weasel will play it on Halloween this Friday. (Yes, the stalwart home grown deejay of 'HFS days also refuses to die and still has a radio show going on WTMD.)

Mark Noone, Slickees' front man, often credits Weasel with helping to launch the band's career by giving their songs a boost on the radio. "Brain" was born circa 1980, and soon there after live concerts would not feel complete without guitarist Kim Kane donning the ritualistic mask during their set. (as if his signature fu manchu and long black braid weren't enough)

Although the group has disbanded, the Slickee tribe wove quite a spell in its day, infecting everyone with their raucous energy and creativity throughout the 1980s and reunion gigs up until 2011. This rough footage of the Slickee Boys performing "Brain" at University of Maryland's Colony Ballroom in 1984, will give you some idea of what went on in this crazy fun band whose colorful costumes were as much a part of the show as their music.

 A must on any Halloween sound track.
Keep it alive...

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Don't Boo Hoo

I like Autumn.

Yes, I know, I know, it's the end of days, the dimming of the light, and all that sad seasonal disorder disease, but the spectacular fall weather that we've been having here in Washington DC has me jazzed. I love the fluctuating temperatures, the mix of clouds and bodacious blue skies and definitely the random craziness of Halloween.

Speaking of which, come Thursday, David Kitchen's band will be presiding over a Halloween Eve Bash. at JVs Restaurant in Falls Church. This tiny place will be celebrating 67 years next month and expanding its size soon, so hope its "ageless charm" remains in tact. JVs has always been a crazy place to see a rock show, and I imagine Thursday's event will be particularly barmy. What I do know is the band will rock your socks off. Stop by and wish David a happy birthday- he's asking for it.