Excerpts from Electric Degeneration, Degenerate Press' semi-weekly e-zine, free and ad-free. A full episode contains sections for music reviews, upcoming events, blasphemy, classifieds, and anything else we feel like saying. If you'd like to subscribe just contact us.
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Bubbapalooza was fantastic. There will be a couple of paragraphs about it in the Loafing this week:
I took a zillion photos and would love to do a full review on Degenerate Press but I bet I donít get around to it. I havenít done a full color Degenerate Press review since this Loafing thing started. Itís too much work and would often be redundant, not to mention Iím moving in the next couple of weeks. About the time Iím settled, the Loafing gig ends so prepare yourselves for the return of rambling, unedited lunacy packed with motion-blurred, unfocused photos.
Meanwhile, I will mention one funny thing that didnít make the Loafing article.
I was in the bathroom standing at one of the urinals. A guy in the neighboring urinal looked over at me and said, ďSo you go the midget, eh?Ē
I looked at him and thought, ďMan, Iím gonna hold my dick in one hand and kick your ass with the other.Ē Then I realized he was referring to the fact that the urinal I was using is low to the ground compared to the one he was standing at, not referencing the size of my midget.
I mean ďpenis.Ē
ďDude, thatís not something you should say when a guy is standing there with his dick out,Ē I noted, and we both had a good laugh.
If one Loafing article ainít enough, I also did a little story on Johnny Knox:
In other news, I got a few responses from last episode:
Great column re: Star Bar. You made some very good points, especially when you pointed out how many venues have come and gone lo these many years. I hadn't put it into that context before.
Well said, Frederick. Sounds like they all need to grow up and let go.
There is enough negativity in the world without a bunch of grumpy ol' drunk men festering and feuding.
Degenerate SG (no, a different one)
As a former Loafer (worked there for 12 years) I can truly appreciate the duality of CL's personality; It's a cool newspaper that is at the same time annoyingly predictable and trite.
Jeff Clark, whether he knows it or not - does project a bit of the UNcool COOLness of CL ; his personality is a bit - how should I say it....stunted. Yet, he still has LOTS to say....to me, (in my humble opinion) that's weird....
Speaking personally, I don't think it was the "swing fad" that passed and caused the Star Bar to stop booking bands that used to fit the twang slogan of the place. It was the new owners that fairly abruptly stopped booking those bands for reasons only they know. I suspect they just didn't like roots country, redneck underground, whatever you want to label it stuff.
Instead of bands I loved like Big Sandy and Dave Alvin and even smaller acts like Marah and Jim Lauderdale that used the play the "old" Star Bar, I was seeing second rate Black Sabbath cover bands and a whole lot of groups I had no idea what they were. So I, like many others, stopped going. Unlike Jeff Clark, I have no animosity about the situation. They own the place, they can book whoever they damn well please. But I in no way think it had to do with the so called "death of swing" that caused the fairly quick change of booking acts I enjoy to acts I have no interest in. Those old acts still come to town, many go to Smith's Olde Bar, a place that you haven't been particularly kind to in print, and still do great business there. So it's not the flight of the boomers to the suburbs that caused the "redneck underground" scene to dissipate at the Star Bar. It was the acts the new owners booked, plain and simple. If they want to book the twang and roots rock I enjoy, I'd be back in a heartbeat, even though I too now live OTP. I like loads of different music too, but they just don't book any of it. So if I just want cheap PBRs and good conversation, I can get 'em somewhere else.
I agree the change from retro/roots to rock/metal was abrupt. But I was there for a couple of Bubbapaloozas after swing died and before management changed the barís flavor. I looked around at one point and asked where the hell everyone was. Not even the regulars were as regular, even for Bubba.
Just because you and a few others are willing to come from the burbs for a show once in a while doesnít mean the bar can survive on it. Smithís doesnít. They book just about anything. I think change was necessary for the Star Bar.
But I do miss some of the acts the bar used to book, many of which might pull in a crowd just as large as unknown metal and punky rock stuff, some of the diversity Smithís has. If only Smithís didnít attract such yuppie wankers, serve overpriced drinks with lousy service, and Ė wait, Iím straying into Jeff Clark territory here. Letís just say I donít like the place and leave it at that.
For those who want yet more on the Al Gore movie, check out Time Magazineís review. Itís not so much a review of the film as the man himself and the speculation about 2008.
Ironically, in the print version the first paragraph in the very next article reads, ďIt was the sort of week that drives serious politicians crazy. Both Al Gore and Hillary Clinton had important things to say about global warming and energy independence Ė and the chatterati spent most of their time ignoring the messages and gossiping about the messengers.Ē
This weekís trip to the drive in was for X-Men 3, a thinly veiled metaphor for the debate about homosexuality. If you were gay and you could be cured, would you take it? Should you? They donít really answer the questions they raise before it degenerates into a big battle, but itís ok Ďcause the effects are pretty damn cool. Not great, but not a bad flick. If youíre an X-Fan youíve already seen it. If not, you probably wonít, so any review of a movie like this is a bit pointless. We now return you to our other pointless distractionsÖ
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