Thursday, May 24, 2012

Broad Ripple Gazette vol 9 no 11

first published in the Broad Ripple Gazette

Joey Ramone Birthday Bash
Saturday May 26, 2012
The Night Porter
921 Broad Ripple Avenue
21+, 9:00 pm, $3, nonsmoking

People often ask me what has been my favorite concert, and it is always an easy answer: Ramones, Vogue Theater, May 24, 1983. Joey Ramone and I had just celebrated our birthdays a few days before – he was 32 and I was exactly a decade younger. I tucked right in front of the stage and swear that he was looking at me under that glorious hair and sunglasses for part of the set.

Now, just 29 years later, Joey has a posthumous record being released this week. And D.J. Jewey Ramone will be spinning cuts from the album, “….ya know,?” showing Ramones videos, and hosting live performances by special guests Ricky Rat (from Detroit’s legendary band, Trashy Brats) and Brothers Gross.

In a nod to his long-time devotion to the Ramones, the ticket price is only $3.00, the same amount D.J. Jewey paid the first time he saw the band in 1978.

Gabba gabba hey, I hope you’ll check it out! 

Dirty Dozen Brass Band
Monday, May 28, 2012
The Jazz Kitchen
5377 College Avenue
317. 253.4900
Two shows: 7:00 & 9:00 pm, $20, 21+, nonsmoking

photo credit: Michael Weintrob

The Dirty Dozen Brass Band is celebrating 35 years as a band and their latest record, Twenty Dozen. And it is fitting that the Dirty Dozen Brass Band is playing on Memorial Day. The history of the band fits right in with our national observance for honoring those who have gone before us.

In 1977 the Dirty Dozen Social and Pleasure Club in New Orleans began showcasing a traditional Crescent City brass band. It was a joining of two proud, but antiquated, traditions. Social and pleasure clubs dated back over a century to a time when black southerners could rarely afford life insurance, and the clubs would provide proper funeral arrangements. Brass bands would often follow the funeral procession playing somber dirges, and once the family of the deceased was out of earshot, they burst into jubilant dance tunes as onlookers danced in the streets. By the late '70s, few social clubs or funeral brass bands existed. The Dirty Dozen Social and Pleasure Club assembled this group as a house band, and over the course of these early gigs, the seven-member ensemble adopted the venue's name: The Dirty Dozen Brass Band. 

Thirty-five years later, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band is a world famous music machine, whose name is synonymous with genre-bending romps and high-octane performances. They have revitalized the brass band in New Orleans and around the world, progressing from local parties, clubs, baseball games and festivals in their early years to touring nearly constantly in the U.S. and in over 30 other countries on five continents. The Dirty Dozen have been featured guests on albums by artists including David Bowie, Elvis Costello, Dr. John and the Black Crowes. Do you think we can get them to play a dirge or two in honor of Decoration Day?

The Jazz Kitchen has a great menu with a New Orleans sensibility. Order some crab cakes, listen to the music and pretend you’re in the Big Easy, at least for a night.
Reservations suggested.

June 1, 2012 - all bars are now non-smoking
I’ve spend the good chunk of the almost-seven years I’ve been writing this column figuring out whether a show is non-smoking or not. And for all of you folks that tell me the reason that you don’t go to see live music is the smoke, I expect to see you soon!

Dawes with Sara Watkins
Thursday June 7, 2012
The Vogue
6259 N College Avenue
21+, $16 advance, $18 day of, doors 7:00 pm, show 8:00

photo credit: Kevin Hays

When I first saw Dawes play I was blown away by how good they were and shocked that there was barely anyone there. I’m going to quote myself here for a review I wrote  after their Locals Only show in 2009. ‘…the San Fernando Valley group Dawes played soulful pop. Brothers Taylor Goldsmith (guitar) and Griffith Goldsmith (drums) harmonizing beautifully against Wylie Gelber's bass guitar. This might be the best band you've never seen, even if they lacked a fourth member - the keyboard player - for this show. They've got it all — great songs, tight sound, good looks and boyish charm - and I predict a bright, well-deserved future for them.’

The future is now folks. They are now headlining (and selling out) large venues, and playing the big music festivals. They’re heading to Bonnaroo Music Festival right after their gig at the Vogue.

I hope to see you at the show. I’ll be the one upfront looking all smug and stuff.

And some sad news….
Locals Only Art + Music Pub will be closing on August 17. The building they’re leasing has been sold and the new landlord has a different plan for the space. I have every confidence that they’ll land in a new spot, but in the meantime make sure that you take every chance you get to check out the shows.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Broad Ripple Gazette vol 9, no 10

first published in the Broad Ripple Gazette

danny flanigan + the rain chorus
Friday, May 18, 2012
Locals Only
2449 E. 56th Street
Indianapolis, IN
9:00 pm, 21+, $5, nonsmoking

Even though Danny Flanigan lives in Louisville, I feel like he belongs to Broad Ripple too. 

He played here at least once a month from 1991 – 2001. And I was at a good deal of those shows. Danny is one of the first people to make me realize that I really loved and appreciated great songwriting and hearing music live.

Danny has a new record; Hope is a Word, his first in eight years. He has played a few solo shows in Indianapolis in the last year, but this will be the first in a long time with his band, The Rain Chorus. The members of the band are Cary Shields (drums), Tim Halcomb (bass), Philip Wakeman (mandolin), and Indianapolis’ own John Byrne (guitar). I caught up with Danny recently to talk about music, Indy, and the band.

I asked Danny how his solo shows differ from a full band gig. “I’m fortunate to have excellent musicians that play to the music,” Danny said. “Thanks to the presence of drums the tunes are more upbeat, energetic – electric folk Midwest rock type thing – the up-tempo songs are more aggressive, and there’s more color thanks to the player’s taste and talents.”

Danny enjoys playing in Indianapolis because of the “authentic fans of music – not just mine – good intelligent community oriented peeps digging on some tunes. There have been so many great bands from Indianapolis over the years.”

I asked Danny what has changed for him in the last ten years, “I got busy being a dad - and there wasn't a new record to share. Now the boys are old enough that they're glad dad gigs in the region again. ‘get out of here dad, don't you have a gig in Indianapolis tonight?’ And hopefully I’m a better songwriter. Songwriting is a craft, so by definition you have to do it to get better at it. I’ve never stopped writing songs, I never will. The band just stopped playing out as much. Hopefully people will come hear us playing the latest batch of tunes.”

Locals Only is a great place to see music. The staff is friendly, the food is good, the beer selection is diverse, and there is plenty of room for everyone.

I know I will be there, and I hope to see you too.

Summertime in Broad Ripple

I love how outdoor music starts popping up all over Broad Ripple in May. Be sure to stop and give some love the to the musicians at the Broad Ripple Farmers Market (Saturdays, 8:00 – noon, behind Broad Ripple High School). They are donating their time – and waking up much earlier than some are them are accustomed to.

The Broad Ripple Art Fair features four outdoor stages with dozens of bands playing over the two day fair (May 19 and 20). The schedule was not available at press time, but the music is always top notch.

There are several venues in Broad Ripple that feature outdoor music. Part of the fun in following your ears! 

I'll see you out and about!