Tuesday, July 31, 2007

And The Bands Played On

Here's just a tiny sample of the great bands that
turned out for Tom Terrell and the dc space reunion
Sunday night. As promised the performances started
in the late afternoon and ended around 1:30 a.m.-
running over time only about 25 minutes.
It was unbelievable efficiency in action.
Hats off to the crew at 9:30!

The legend that is ... Chuck Brown.

As promised Tiny Desk Unit virtually reunited
with Michael Barron on the West Coast. Bob Boilen
is playing and working a tiny Mac, while Susan Mumford
How cool is that?

The Howling Mad with Michael Reidy who can still
deliver a band with energy from outside this universe.

The Beatnik Flies and Mark Noone played together like
they've been doing it forever (which they kind of have
though not with each other)

I'm leaving tons of people out because I was too busy yacking.
If anyone has good pictures- send 'em to me.

All present gave their all- and all were proof positive
that you're never too old to rock this town.

Familiar Faces

The dc space reunion/benefit at the 9:30 was a success. Here's a bunch of ole friends getting their tickets early on. ( If you were around you know who they are- I see at least two deejays and a bar manager from my dim past)

I don't know about these guys, but it took me a whole day to recover.

Way more pix and a full report later.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Last Call

I know I've been ranting, but this is the last call for the dc space reunion/benefit for Tom T. Here's the scoop- the "new" 9:30 Club is located at 815 V Street NW, near Howard University Hospital, and right around the corner from the now bustling U Street corridor. There is a pay lot near the club and some street parking. The Metro stop is U Street /Cordoza- two blocks away. The doors open at 4; performances start at 4:30 and go on pretty much non- stop until 1 a.m. Sunday.
Expect art, poetry, music, dance and the unexpected. It's an all ages venue, so bring the off spring, bring your friends, bring everybody.

And tonight, catch The Hula Monsters free at Lubber Run Park in Arlington. Show starts at 8 p.m.

Raise Your Hand If You Remember 1977

OK. Thirty years was a long time ago. Jimmy Carter was president. Star Wars came out. Elvis Presley was still alive. (until August) Disco was in, though punk was here. The Ramones' "Teenage Lobotomy" and The Sex Pistols' "God Save the Queen" were up against The Eagles and Fleetwood Mac. Alice Cooper went into rehab; Elvis didn't make it. Talking Heads and the B 52s were coming up. The funk band, Parliament put out "Get Down and Boogie". Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd were still touring. (All that music and my class picked Boz Scagg's "Lido Shuffle" as our song.)
On the dark side, Debby Boone was elected best new artist. My college housemate played "You Light Up My Life" for more than two hours straight- an experience which scarred me for life.

And last but not least, dc space opened its doors.

My memory is crystal clear, but for those of you who are little hazy, and you know who you are, here's a little primer on just some of the names performing this Sunday at the dc space reunion @ the 9:30 club :

Marshall Keith, (Slickee Boys)
Martha Hull, (Slickee Boys, DCeats, the Steady Jobs, The Dynettes)
and Bob Berberich (The Hangmen, Grin, Rossyln Mountain Boys)
are all in Ottley.

Boyd Farrell, (Black Market Baby)
Mike Dolfi, (Black Market Baby)
and Sean Saley (Government Issue, Moodroom)
are in Rustbuckit.

Michael Reidy, ( Razz, Nightman)
Abaad Behram ( Razz, Johnny Bombay & the Reactions)
and Doug Tull( Razz Tommy Keene Billy Coulter)
are in The Howling Mad.

Also, Mark Noone ( Slickee Boys and too many bands to mention) will perform for the first time with The Beatnik Flies, an historic event.

Speaking of too many bands to mention, the performances are limited to ten minutes each and scheduled from 4:30 p.m. until 1 a.m. with five minute change overs. (This is not the old 9:30 by the way, but a very professional night club with a huge staff.) All kinds of music and performing arts will be going on- see previous posts for a large, but partial list.

I would pay twenty dollars just to see a few of these acts, but most importantly this event will help our friend, Tom Terrell and his ongoing struggle with cancer. Not a fun fight or a fair fight, but he's fighting just the same. Please come and celebrate the local scene here, past and present, and give a hand to Tom. Besides being a good cause, it's going to be a great party.

(Michael Reidy @ the 9:30 Club, 2006 by Steve Edgar)

Thursday, July 26, 2007

dc space reunion bulletin

(picture by Adam Fenster)
This just in-Chuck Brown,
our own "godfather of go-go', will be joining the line up Sunday at the dc space reunion at the 9:30 Club, as well as the magician, Alain Nu.
Plus jazz guys, Hamlet Bluiett and Oliver Lake.

Going back in time, Tiny Desk Unit will perform a muti-media trans-continental feat with
Michael Barron virtually playing from the left coast, while Susan Mumford and Bob Boilen appear here in real time.
(Might be more magical than the magician.)

Also look for Robert Goldstein of the Urban Verbs playing guitar with four back- up singers.

Doors open at 4 p.m.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Have You Seen These Bands?

can you name these bands?

You could see them THIS SUNDAY July 29th at the dc space reunion/benefit for Tom Terrell at the 9:30 club.

(They are: Ottley, Rustbuckit, The Beatnik Flies)

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

dc space...back in the day

Count Four /photo by danny brown

Back in the day, 1977 to be exact, one of the scarier walks at night was between dc space and the old 9:30 Club. People may be leery of the new 9:30 Club's urban setting on V street, but back then there was nothing open and lit between 930 F Street and 7th and E. (except maybe those adult places on 9th) There was a truly scary pedestrian mall where the Portrait Gallery is, or you could skirt around that through a parking lot. But it was worth it. Once you got to either of those places, there was music and poetry and people interested in whatever was new inside. ( And sometimes a lunatic from the bus stop outside Space would reel through) Bill Warrell and his mother, Susan had a vision, and they made it happen- way back when DC was NOT the place to be anymore- "space was the place".

And now over 50 artists are gathering at the 9:30 Club to celebrate dc space and to donate their efforts to help their friend, Tom Terrell who is battling cancer. Tom T, King Pleasure-always upbeat on the radio. I would call him late at night just to hear him say hey.
His show "Cafe C'est What" was on WHFS, but he also deejayed at WPFW, space and the 9:30 club. He wrote music articles for The Unicorn Times and The City Paper and others. If you're lucky you might still catch him reviewing jazz for NPR on "All Things Considered."

So come on down to the 9:30 Club on Sunday. Doors open at 4. Dig up a twenty (for Tom) to get in.
It'll be a scene like no other...

Monday, July 23, 2007

Did It Start With the Grapes?

Doug Dupin does things a little differently than most people. When he dreams things up, he actually makes them happen. When he bought a house with a large side yard in the Palisades, he didn't just plant a garden, he created a vineyard. The vineyard led to wanting a wine cellar and that led to grabbing a shovel. When he got down four or five feet, he started noticing artifacts. As he was literally digging up history, he wanted to know more. That was when Doug discovered that there wasn't a lot of information about the prehistory of the Palisades. This lack of data didn't stop Doug. In fact, it egged him on. He dug his wine cellar and built a sort of a cabin on top, and now that building (a piece of art in itself) is the home to the Palisades Museum of Prehistory. With help from a neighbor, Murphy Donovan, he created an exhibit and held an opening for the neighborhood last winter- complete with local experts and his home brewed beer.
The museum is open by appointment only. If you want to go, fire off an email to: director@pmop.org.
Also, Doug is giving an archeology talk about Palisades Park tomorrow night, July 24th, at 7 p.m. in the Palisades Library. Check him out. (And stay tuned for a report on his long board business... did I mention he is also a father of 3?)

Doug Dupin, Director

Hard at work at the museum.

dc space reunion/benefit for Tom Terrell

@ the 9:30 Club

(Click on flyer to enlarge)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

ALice Despard Tonight at Galaxy Hut

finepix_5 020 (Large)
Originally uploaded by Alienwhere

She will rock your ...galaxy



High Jinks with Prabir and the boys

Prabir and the Substitutes did it again at The Galaxy Hut last night.
Man, those guys can move, and play and sing. They practically vibrate. They've got ants in their pants. They're the Beatles on steroids. Don't look now, but the key board player is standing on the windowsill knocking into the big letters that spell "HUT". The rail thin guitar player's legs are moving as fast as his shredding hands. Prabir doesn't take any prisoners. He and the Substitutes have more fun than their audience, though I'm laughing my head off, and the door man has a huge grin. Then, suddenly, they stop and step into the crowd to sing "Everybody Falls In Love With You" a cappella, as calmly and as beautifully as choir boys. And everybody listens. Then it's back to their high jinks- full throttle. My only complaint- the set was too short. More More More!

And don't forget Alice Despard at the Hut tonight. Trust her to make your Sunday .

Friday, July 20, 2007

Hit the Galaxy Hut This Weekend

Prabir and the Substitutes are playing The Galaxy Hut in Arlington on Saturday night. (If they can find it, so can you.) Alice Despard, herself, returns on Sunday.

Prabir's band is young and funny and energetic. I've seen them literally swing from the rafters on stage at Iota. Plus they can sing like nobody's business.

Alice has a voice I never get tired of, and she and her drummer, Evan Pollack have stripped down the concept of a band to two people with drums and a guitar who sound like way more.
(The first time I heard them, I was peering through the crowd trying to find the other guitar player- or at least a bass player.) Don't miss either of these shows.

( See the sidebar for links to all of the above)

Galaxy Hut

Galaxy Hut
Photo Originally uploaded by Spitzbob

You may have heard that The Galaxy Hut, one of my favorite bars in the world, has changed hands, but it landed safely in the arms of Larry, long time bartender-dj- musician, and he has done little to change the cosmic atmosphere which Alice Despard created. It's an amazing little place with a "patio room" the size of a bathroom hallway in an apartment- under the stars. Art on the walls and on the tables. Plus it's easy to strike up a conversation at the bar. When there's a show, there's enough room for the band and their friends, and you and your friends. That's it. Don't try and swing a cat. Do try the amazing selection of beers.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

dc space

(9353 will be there)

It opened 30 years ago on the corner of 7th and E. Then it was a bar, but more importantly it was a space for ALL kinds of art: music, poetry, dance, and performance art. (which was sometimes provided by the drunks at the bus stop)
Now it's a Starbuck's.

If you've ever been there, you have a story about it, and if you haven't- Sunday, July 29th is your chance to catch up. Over fifty artists and musicians are gathering to perform at the 9:30 Club for the dc space reunion/ benefit for Tom Terrell. You might remember him as Tom T on WHFS. ( Cafe C'est What and Sunday Reggae Splashdown) He was on WPFW, too.
If you don't know him, he's always smiling, and always made me smile when I heard him on the radio late at night. Now he's fighting cancer and needs support.

And even if you don't remember any of the above, it stands to reason you might have been there anyway.
So be there now. Somebody might remember you. It's going to be a great party, and it's a good cause.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Woodward & Lothrop

Woodward & Lothrop
Originally uploaded by Bill on Capitol Hill

Am I dreaming?
Coming soon:
Mayor for Life,
Marion Barry,
in wax at.....


Tuesday, July 17, 2007


Space was the place
Originally uploaded by alex.DC

It happened before- it can happen again...
DC Space Reunion at the 9:30 Club- Sunday- July 29th, 2007 in conjunction with a benefit for the one and only Tom T. who is fighting cancer. Tons of performances: Ajax Joe Drayton, Amy Pickering, Beatnik Flies, Bill Warrell, Bobby Donovan, Rust Bucket, 9353, Ruthie and The Wranglers...

And that's just the top of the iceberg-more later!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Ra Ra X- Husbands

The Velvet Lounge had a lot of energy going on Saturday night, and it was packed when The X- Husbands played, and even more packed for Ra Ra Rasputin. Us old folks in the audience had to line up against the knee wall, so we wouldn't get knocked over, but Joe Dolan, of The Beatnik Flies (aka Daddy- O) went up there and rocked with the X-Husbands- playing drums for them which made us fogies proud. (Some of us ain't dead yet.)

And it was all hands on deck when they were joined by Hayley's sister, Theresa on maracas and one of the Rasputins. To everybody that missed it- you gotta get out more. Later this month, catch the Beatnik Flies at the 9:30 Club's
DC Space Reunion- July 29th.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Roll Over Beethoven/New Music @ The Velvet Lounge

(That's Ra Ra Rasputin pictured here.)

Earlier this month, when The Beatnik Flies played Sangha, I mentioned Joe Dolan's girls were there dancing, and now turn about's fair play. Joe's daughter, Hayley is in a band called The X Husbands, and they'll be at The Velvet Lounge tomorrow night, opening for Ra Ra Rasputin. Hayley gave me the lowdown on their music:

"The Husbands, Andrew Bucket and Haley Baptiste, prove you don't have to be Yngwie Malmsteen to write a perfect pop song. The Husbands are a punk-folk duo that write songs in the spirit of Shoegaze and neo-psychadelic bands of yesteryear: Beat Happening, Mazzy Star, Lou Reed and the Velvets. Their first E.P is called Shoes and it cost absolutely nothing to record.

what goes here?
Ra Ra Rasputin is what would have happened
if Belle & Sebastian were influenced less by Felt and more by Talking Heads. (circa Fear of Music/Remain in Light). Throw in a little Orange Juice, The Rapture and early New Order and you've pretty much got it.
Oh, and we like to dance. And not in a restrained and ironic way either."

( OK I have to admit, I'm not following all that, but I'm willing to spring my friends from the nursing home, and go give it a try.)

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Rare Wild Life ALert!

So When the Troubadours play The Quarry House tonight, it may be their only public appearance this month! Bring a buck to put in the tip jar, request a song, and they become a human juke box. It's a hoot.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

The Quarry House Holds ON

I've had some odd jobs in my life, but one of them was painting the steps that lead down to the Quarry House in Silver Spring which is still a hold out from the infringing new and improved Silver Sprung. I met friends in a bar last week in the newer section and after parking on the fourth floor and squeezing into a freight sized elevator with a gazillion people, we unloaded into the now infamous, formerly forbidden, photography zone- otherwise known as the new pedestrian mall. (I have to stop here and thank Chip Py for squawking about this no photo thing, and actually doing something about it.) Anyway a band was playing, and lots of new chain stores have happily attracted throngs. Not exactly my cup of tea. So I'm glad that Jackie bought the Quarry House and left it relatively unscathed so far. A basement bar- it can only be described as a hole in the wall with tater tots and now an extensive (and can be expensive) beer list, but it's still a dive, and I like it like that. The Rhodes Tavern Troubadours are playing tomorrow night. Check it out.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Right Airport Terminally Wrong

I just got back from taking my daughter to Reagan National Airport where the security level and the air quality are a lovely shade of orange today . I always refused to call it "Reagan," but now I'm thinking the name fits-that place is as confused as he was. I talked to a shuttle bus driver, and he's been working there 7 years and still gets lost himself. He even pointed out that the terminal shuttle bus stop sign says nothing about it being a shuttle bus stop. For me it started when I parked in the lot for terminals A B and C only to find out you had to take a bus to A which is the old original terminal. (Them were the days- imagine this- you drive up to a one story, well marked building. You park about twenty feet away in some senator's space and run in to meet your party. Not necessarily legal, but no security- and no, I didn't get towed, and it was not a big deal.)( Sigh.)
So we get on the bus, we get to Terminal A, and I say goodbye to the kid. I go back to near where I got on the bus, and this time there is a sign on a shelter saying "terminal shuttle", but the bus blows right past me because the stop is actually about twenty feet away. At least the driver waits for me to walk over to the bus. And it's about now that I realize I am NEVER going to be able to find my car again. I am completely disoriented after catching a bus and circling the airport twice. So I tell the driver, and he lets me off where he thinks I parked. Nothing looks familiar. I go upstairs, knowing I parked on the second floor. I can't even see the terminal. Slowly it dawns on me that I might be in long term parking, and I find a nice woman who confirms this and directs me to short term parking, just a small hike away. Then a miracle occurs; I do find my car. I get out of there only to be dumped into rush hour traffic on a road with no name, leading me onto 395 north. I bail at Maine Avenue, twirl around Southwest and with no help whatsoever from DDOT, I get back on that nice road which runs between the river and the Washington Monument, but doesn't have a single sign. If I lived here, I'd be home by now.

Monday, July 9, 2007

How Poe Came to Live in DC

We were up in Maine once visiting our friend, Paul. He was living and working on an old horse farm in a building that was converted into an art studio. He had been commissioned to make a sculpture of Beethoven for a New England College, and he made an extra head which he later turned into Edgar Allan Poe for a friend. Poe was languishing there in the barn yard when we arrived because the friend in Richmond didn't have a place for him. We admired him, and the next time Paul came for a visit- lo and behold- Poe came with him and has lived in the front yard ever since collecting admirers.
(Though I 'm not exactly Poe's biggest fan I recently read a story of his that I hadn't read before, and I have to say when the narrator gouged his cat's eye out, I was completely creeped out- some one hundred fifty years later. I think from now on I might stick to "Annabell Lee.")
Anyway today a neighborhood artist dropped by. His wife needed to walk after a recent surgery so they were exploring new streets. He was so delighted to find Poe that he came knocking at my door, and made a crack about "The Raven". We got to talking, and I found out he went to Wilson High School in the 1940s. I introduced him to my daughter who goes there now. A few minutes later, the two of them broke out singing the Wilson fight song. (That's when his wife made him leave.)
Then he came back later and offered to loan my daughter a book on drawing. It was just great.
So thank you, Paul. Having Poe here has been a hoot. Not too mention, we're always ready for Halloween. (Did I mention Annabell Lee lives just down the street? But that's another story.)

Saturday, July 7, 2007

D.C. Politics

D.C.'s official parade wound through my neighborhood on July Fourth-anyone and everyone can be in it, and they are- from a Safeway tractor trailer to some nobody with U.S. flags flying from the mirrors of their SUV. (Get Al Gore on the phone.) A perennial candidate for attention-a wild woman named Faith- as always riding a horse and blowing a bugle in her usual red white and blue spangled outfit. (She dated Marlon Brando once. True story!) Every one's favorite band, The Different Drummers with their rainbow flag waving always wakes the crowd up. Mayor Adrian Fenty was there, which was unusual for a non election year- so hat's off to him. Also one of my daughter's good friends, who is running for President. Check out his first lady. Plus he has an entourage in the truck behind him. Come to think of it, he would probably do a much better job- even at the tender age of seventeen, than the current guy in office. (True story!)

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

The Evens' Evening @ Fort Reno- Highest point In DC

The buzz around The Evens concert last night (amongst those paying attention) was Prez Bush's latest lame move of commuting Scooter Libby's sentence. Ian MacKaye didn't hold back his opinions much to the delight of the crowd. Both he and Amy Farina sounded like a much bigger band than they are, and it was a great show.
For those not paying so much attention- the roving bands of Wilson kids- some vaguely aware of the music, most knowing that guy up there from Fugazi had graduated from their school- they were more into the social scene which was later deemed "awkward".

And for those 12 and under there was always
the Good Humor truck-frisbees, and fireflies.
Something for everyone.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

It's A Family Affair

See all that hair flying in front of Joe Dolan? That's his daughters rocking out to Daddy-o last Saturday night at the Beatnik Flies show in Takoma Park. The Ottleys opened with Martha Hull singing her heart out in an office chair- her broken ankle propped up in front of her, but that didn't slow her or the rest of the band down a bit. The only problem was the beer (and there was good beer, too) ran out early, but the bands played on. By the way, age before beauty is a beautiful thing when it adds up to musical talent like these guys have in spades. (Somebody stop me before I mix up a Molotov metaphor)

All I meant was- it was a great show, and all these cats still rock and how.

Who Let the Flies Out?

(The scene last night at Sangha; photos by Mark Noone)