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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

No News Is What It Is

It's been over a month since I heard the news. Any news. Normally I am a bit of a NPR junkie flipping on an audio trail of radios all over the house from the time I wake up until I can't take it anymore around 7 p.m. Traveling overseas completely severed this routine except for one morning in Paris when we woke up to an inordinate amount of helicopter noise. I jumped on the internet just to make sure nothing major had happened near the Eiffel tower where we staying, but the only 'breaking news' I could find centered on a vacationing couple who had inadvertently left behind their three year old  in a rest stop en route to Marseille.

In Greece, I didn't hear any news, but, despite the overwhelming financial problems there, my cousins were very worried about Donald Trump being elected. I had to reassure them that this was only a vuvouzela chorus of pre election weirdness. (And as my good friend Anne would say, babies not even conceived of yet will be born before November 2016)

And so my little self imposed boycott goes on. I remain not woefully but deliberately ignorant for now, listening to music instead, and since DC ROCKS rarely offers riffs on the news, the lack of breaking updates in my brain should make no difference here.

That being said this weekend's forecast is sunny and musical. Check DC ROCKS' side bar calendar for bands playing everything from pool parties to night clubs starting with Dave Chappell at JV's Thursday night to an early gig with Goin' Goin' Gone, Ruthie and the Wranglers and more this Sunday afternoon at Sligo Cafe.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Return of a Native

photo by Mark A Noone

Greetings Readers

After flying all day from the future which was morning in Paris through a time warp somewhere over Greenland to what I think is six hours in the past here in Washington DC, I think I am back..
(at least my body is here- just don't ask me what time it is)

Where is everybody?

Hello? Anyone there?

I know where you are.

Places like Maine, Ocean City, the mountains- anywhere but here in town. But it's nice in DC with so many people gone away- especially all those pesky politicians and their minions, and, as long as you don't venture down to the tourist spots, we're left with lots more places to park. Hard to believe that in   about a week the DC schools will be back in session, and traffic will snarl anew.

For those of you still hanging around, Chip Py, occasional DC ROCKS photographer, has a gig tomorrow evening at Martin Luther King Library about his adventures in the go-go world which include documenting the sadly late but always great Chuck Brown.

Saturday, July 25, 2015


Dear Readers

Sorry to abandon the ship, but transmitting from overseas is proving to be a technological effort beyond my ken resulting in colossal futility. Watch this space for things returning to something akin to normal sometime in mid-August. Until then, hang in there DC. Try to stay cool without me... (Ha!)

Friday, July 17, 2015

Let's Go Honky Tonkin Round This Town

Roadhouse. Tavern. Honky Tonk. Dare I say dive? These are the places where DC ROCKS feels most at home. This Saturday night Ruthie and the Wranglers will be throwing it down with The Thrillbillys at the new and improved but still small enough to rub elbows with everyone JV's  in Virginia. This show is sure to be a hoot- a revved up rocking version of a hootenanny.

Not to be outdone, over in Maryland, Hank Dietle's Tavern now has Curley-S Q BBQ's truck in the yard (check their website for time) with Monsters from the Surf and Jumpin' Jupiter in the house to work off that pig.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

When We Go to the Beach

One of the great things about living in Washington, D.C. is our sweet spot location between the mountains and the shore. However, judging by the traffic on Route 50 every weekend, I think the beach "wins" by a long shot, and always has. Many of my summer memories go way back to an old hotel in Ocean City, Maryland called the Del-Mar which had a dining room, rocking chairs on the double decker porches and beds with sunken mattresses.  My brother and I shared one bed which was okay except we tended to end up in the exact same space, and then a lot of kicking ensued. Remember that "I Love Lucy" episode when they all slept in a cabin by the railroad tracks? Fred and Ethel had the bunks, and Lucy had to tuck Ricky into their bed with a tight fitting sheet so they both wouldn't roll down to the middle... It was like that.

This summer you don't have to fight traffic to experience the seashore. The Building Museum has got our backs on this with its own version of "The Beach" - a 10,000 square foot space devoted to the illusion of sand, sea and light. Admission (which includes access to the entire museum) seems a bit stiff at first - $16 for adults and $13 for kids, but maybe that's because I am spoiled rotten having grown up with the Smithsonian Institution. Today, and every day, the weather at "The Beach" is 70 degrees with no chance of rain, and when you think about it, the entry fee is not much more than a movie. Plus one million translucent balls don't come cheap.

photo by Christine Hansen Martin

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Crazy Cat Round Up

Imagine herding cats. (aka musicians)  How many could you get on a stage for one evening? Take your typical rock band which has 4 or 5 people involved, odds are one of them forgets to check their email on a regular basis, one travels for work and yet another is in two other bands. Now add a bath tub on that stage because there is always going to be some kind of extra problem about getting there or parking or not having all your cables and mike stands.

Enter Herschel Hoover, cat wrangler extraordinaire from Chess Club Romeos, who dreams big. He wanted The Romeos to play on a bill which would feature his eclectic taste in music and his favorite bands- hoping to turn people on to all kinds of music in one fell swoop. The result is euphonX -eight bands playing at IOTA this Saturday. Yes, eight bands doing half hour sets starting at 6 p.m. and running all night.  Just twelve dollars for a lot of crazy cats.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Come Outside DC

Now that we are deep in the heart of summer, the Fort Reno Concert Series is back in business starting tomorrow at 7 p.m. and happening Mondays and Thursdays through out the month of July.  If you've always wondered why that little stage is there- set seemingly at random in a park on the highest hill in Washington, then now is the time to find out. Tomorrow's bands are East West Hwy, Sara Curtin and The Fuss. I'll be there for a lot of the shows, but will sadly miss Jack On Fire July 27 so somebody please let me know how that goes.