Thursday, May 27, 2010

Holiday Weekend Options on the Home Front

You don't have to battle the beach traffic this weekend because there are plenty of music options here at home. Here are two:

Greenland brings their powerful sound to the Velvet Lounge on Friday night. They're a local treasure and have a new EP, "Cleanly Shaven" out. Also with intriguing locals Frau Eva and Orbit to Leslie and The Armchairs - both from Philadelphia.

Things will be rocking in Rockville given the wide array of local and out of town talent on several stages Saturday at Rockville's 22nd annual 3 day Hometown Holidays festival in Rockville Town Center. Click here and then click on each day's schedule. Highlights on Saturday include the Nighthawks, Ruthie and the Wranglers, Billy Coulter Band, Patty Reese. The weekend events include a parade and a variety of other activities.

Tiny Desk Unit- Big Party @ 9:30 Club

It's been a remarkable year already. First came the snowpocalypse in February, and now we have DC's own 9:30 Club's AMAZING line up for the 30th anniversary to end all anniversaries- this MONDAY May 31. Here's the line up according to the 9:30 Club's latest press release:

Tiny Desk Unit – the first band to play at the original 9:30 Club.  Its keyboard player is 
no stranger to the new club. It’s Bob Boilen, of NPR – the guy that broadcasts All 
Songs Considered shows from the 9:30 Club for the entire world to hear. 

The Fleshtones – these CBGB grads were the very first band then-independent 
promoter Seth Hurwitz booked at the 9:30 Club, back when Carter was in office.  Since 
then, Seth and partner Rich Heinecke bought the Club, Jimmy went on to start Habitat 
for Humanity and the Fleshtones have been doing what they do: recording and rocking 
out on the road. 

Tommy Keene – A Bethesda native, who played the original 9:30 Club with
Razz before launching a successful solo career, known for being one of the most 
critically acclaimed authentic power pop acts. 

The Slickee Boys – the punk-psychedelic punk rock band holds the all-time record of 
most times playing the 9:30 Club with 79 appearances.  Monday will be number 80! 

The Psychedelic Furs – the very first “Big Act” booked at the 9:30 Club, the English 
rock band was one of the most successful acts spawned from the punk and new wave 

Marti Jones & Don Dixon - back when radio “broke” artists, D.C.’s alternative station 
WHFS catapulted this duo to fame, and they packed the Club with fans eager to hear 
hits like “Praying Mantis”. 

Clutch  - This Germantown, Md,, -based, internationally-traveling metal funk band cut its 
teeth at the 9:30 Club, and returns every year to sold out houses. The band just 
released a two-disc DVD, “Clutch Live at the 9:30 Club”, with material going back as far 
as 1991. 

Trouble Funk - one of the best live bands ever gave the 9:30 Club patrons their first 
taste of DC’s Go-Go sound.  Like they say, once you go Go-Go, you never go back. 

The Evens – A duo of Amy Farina and partner Ian MacKaye.  While known around the 
world as the front man of Minor Threat and Fugazi, and a bastion of rock integrity in 
the music industry, he’s always been “just Ian” at the 9:30 Club. 

Justin Jones – represents the future of the 9:30 Club, with his soul-filled Americana 
sound, Justin has opened the club a dozen times for acts like ZZ Top, Loretta Lynn and 
Sheryl Crow.  His next CD will be the 1st release on the 9:30 Club record label later 
this summer. 

The Pietasters  - they met at Virginia Tech, horns in hand 20 years ago – and the soul 
ska band still comes back home to the 9:30 Club, playing to full houses every time. 

Ted Leo – though he was born in Indiana and grew up in Jersey, Washington, D.C. and 
the 9:30 Club are running through the veins of this indie rock doc and his current band 
The Pharmacists.  Ted played the club regularly as a member of local faves Chisel in 
the early-mid 1990s. 

Bob Mould -  in all his incarnations, starting with influential hardcore punk pioneers 
Hüsker Dü, Bob has always considered the 9:30 Club his home.  In other worlds, 
getting the blowoff is a bad thing.  But thanks to Bob Mould, it’s a D.C. favorite.  Bob, 
who lived in D.C. for years, takes his Blowoff dance party to the 9:30 Club every month, 
and now he takes that show on the road. 

Henry Rollins presides as host. Please note- this show is free and open to the public, but tickets are available on a very limited basis. Here's the scoop:

Members of the 9:30 Club Forum (the club’s no-holds-barred online discussion group), 
subscribers to Volume, the 9:30 Club’s print newsletter and subscribers to the 9:30 
Club’s email list will receive the first opportunity to secure tickets by lottery.  A very 
limited number of tickets will be available at the door on show day, first come, first 

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

They Will Make You Want to Holler

Yell County is named for bandmember Joel Maupin's home county in Arkansas. This happens to be where my Mom was from, and there is one local legend about people yelling at each other across a mountain or something, thus the county's name. I'm not sure if this is true, but Yell County will get you rocking Thursday night at Iota with Heypenny from Nashville.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Yachtsmen Plan to Rock Iota

Mark Noone has had many incarnations including Slickee Boy, Wanktone, Wrangler, Troubadour and Hula Monster, but his latest brainchild The Yachtsmen is a  dream band come true. Here he gets to act out his alter ego- Thurston Howell the Third while doing original rock. The amazing thing is he somehow came up with two other band mates-Joel App and John Penovich who had the same Gilligonian vision. (Call me crazy, but I think that's a bit remarkable.) Taking full advantage of the shtick the Yachtsmen set sail this Monday night for a 50 minute tour at Iota. Opening will be Glasglow which feature two uber talented brothers from New Orleans. Something for everyone, ladies and gentlemen. Show time on the early side- 8:30 p.m.

Friday, May 21, 2010


Congratulations Ken Roseman- winner of our Fab Faux ticket contest. Thanks to everyone who participated- we wish we had tickets for  ALL of you. Our straw poll results: favorite mop top turned out to be Sir Paul on top-  George a close second, no votes for dear Ringo, and one vote for Fernando Baptista.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Last Train Is Home

It used to be you could see Last Train Home  headlining more often than not at Iota, but since DC homeboy and band leader, Eric Brace moved to Nashville, he has gotten involved in all kinds of musical projects. (imagine that, in Nashville, of all places) Lately though he has been busy bailing out his basement and helping out neighbors after record flooding hit his new home town destroying homes and lives.
So welcome back Eric and company for the not so common upcoming  LAST TRAIN HOME weekend at Iota. This includes the wildly popular Sunday matinee- a magnet for junior bar flies in training. 
Please come out and show your support for our old friend who just keeps on getting better as time goes on. (Those guitar lessons really paid off.) Set times 9 p.m. this Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday. As always DC ROCKS shows stay under budget- tickets just $12 for real live entertainment.

Correct Email for Fab Faux Contest!!!!!

To win a pair of tickets to the Fab Faux contest please send an email with FAB FAUX in the subject line and answer the question- Who was your favorite Beatle? to

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

How Much Does DC Rock?

Some people think they know a lot about Washington, but one very important thing to know is that  the Beatles' first live concert was here, right here in Washington DC at the Washington Coliseum on February 11, 1964. (Believe me, I would have been there if I had known how to drive in kindergarten.)

Sadly now, the Beatles of that day are literally gone, but the nationally acclaimed Fab Faux is coming to LISNER Auditorium this SATURDAY night with the sole purpose of bringing their music back to life. This group has gotten rave reviews, appeared on Letterman and sold out Radio City Music Hall, and  DC ROCKS has been given a pair of tickets to our loyal readers.

(photo by eric mirell)

For your chance to win send an email with the words Fab Faux written in the subject line right now to and answer the question- who was your favorite Beatle?
Entries will be accepted until 9 p.m. Thursday May 20. We'll pick a name at random, and announce the winner on this site Friday May 21.

The Beatles Faux Return To D.C. Contest

Boy, we wish the Beatles could return, but since they can't- DC ROCKS will try and console fans with a pair of FAB FAUX tix to give away to the show this SATURDAY.
Stay tuned to this space for details.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

It's A Honky Tonk Suburb

JV is the kind of place that will surprise you.
First of all the location is in a suburban shopping center which screams nondescript.
You have to know JV is there to stop for anything except maybe the Baskin Robbins next door. The surprise is JV boasts an atmosphere that is genuine Honky Tonk  with no apologies, and you will soon forget you are in a godforsaken spot on Route 50 just down from the circle of hell known as Seven Corners.
Next the music. 
If you are there before the band you will wonder where the heck they are going to fit much more than a harmonica player, but they do. I have seen at least five pieces. (Still if you sit in a front booth,  you can make a request without leaving your seat.)
Last amazing thing- how good the bands are especially when someone like guitar guru Dan Hovey shows up. Dan will be playing there this THURSDAY with, of all things, the Dan Hovey Band. 
As Dan says they will "start swinging about 9 and rocking about  about 20 minutes later."

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Surf Is Most Definitely Up This Saturday

East Coast surf may not be the legendary stuff that the West Coast is famous for, but that doesn't mean we can't celebrate the upcoming beach season with great local surf music.Dust off your board, get out your Flojos, and prepare to hit Iota for the Space Cossacks reunion show this Saturday night. (By the by Baltimoreans can catch the show Friday at Metro Gallery. These guys have such good posters I have to put them both up)

Here is the scoop from Catherine Gray of the Space Cossacks:

"We half jokingly talked about getting back together more than a year ago and decided to turn it into a ten year reunion tour from the time we disbanded. As we discussed it further we were overwhelmed by the positive encouragement to make it a reality. Ten to fifteen years ago there was nowhere near the web presence and social networking opportunities there are now. In the time we were apart, we acquired a much larger fan base all over the world that we never thought possible.

We are very excited to be together as friends and band mates again and play our songs for old fans and new. Unfortunately, it's probably a one time thing since we are spread over four states. But you never know... We will just ride this wave until the next one comes along!"

Opening for the Cossacks will be another
great inland surf band- the Atomic Mosquitos. They will get the party rolling and are reportedly "stoked" to play with their old friends after all these years.


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Joe Rocks X Two

(Flies Unplugged: photo by Dean Evangelista)

Two bands are playing the Fenton Street Market in Silver Spring this Saturday afternoon, and here are the facts (just the facts, ma'am) from Joe Dolan:

"Beatnik Flies Unplugged: featuring Ken Bugg-bass, The Bidjje-percussion, Mark Langosch-flute, and myself on guitar and vocals.
The Vi-Kings Unplugged: Bill Euler, Stock Wilson and myself, all Guitars and vocals."
The market goes from 9:00 a.m. till 3:00 p.m. Music starts at noon. Flies first-Vi-Kings second."

Here's beyond the facts- The Flies have been playing for years and years, and we are grateful that they are still at it because, as that slightly tired Nice and Easy expression goes- they're not gettin' older, they're gettin' better.

And while a lot of musicians might think about gearing down later in life, Joe Dolan isn't one of them. He got involved with the Vi-kings-all former schoolmates- as a project for their reunion at Walt Whitman High- class of '70. (Go Team)
Practice went way better than expected which is why you, too, will have the opportunity to see them "unplugged" this Saturday- and the full band at Bangkok Blues later this June.

And Now For Something Completely Different.....

From the UK, of course and also from here. An English dance tradition - the "ale" - descends on our city streets this weekend. Perhaps like you, I thought "ale" referred to a beverage like my current favorite Founders Red's Rye IPA. But an "ale" is also a festive performance of Morris dances, -a traditional English folk dancing done to fiddle music dating back at least to the 16th century. The idea of dancers taking over public places really caught my eye, perhaps because it has a May Day pagan feel to it.

Local dancers will join the Bows and Belles Northwest Team from Colchester UK to perform "The Three Branches of Government Ale" all around D.C. this weekend. Locations and times on Saturday and Sunday can be found at the link above, and they actually correspond to the 3 branches of government. You can help preserve our democracy by remembering what they are and meditating on the elegance of The Federalist Papers while you groove to the dancing.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

We Told You So

It's not like we didn't tell Prabir and the Substitutes they would be famous someday. Now disbanded, the band can still take pride in having "Five Little Pieces" used in a promo piece for a DC-based sitcom. We're not sure what to make of this possible show, nor the reference to the "hipster infested E Street Cinema," but our adopted Richmond friends are now creating new music in Prabir/Goldrush and The Trillions.

Rock on.

9:30 Turns 30 May 31

DC Rocks advises you get a date, save that date and stay tuned to this Space.