Friday, October 2, 2015

Rauckin' the Haus

Things got a bit raucous at Ye Olde Essen Haus last night. Thanks to the annual Dairy Expo, a host of out-of-towners were gnoshing schnitzel and wurst and imbibing brews whilst Big Wes Turner’s Trio mashed the Americana.
“Greg,” a cool dude of substantial presence, was out with his comrades to pass boots in preparation for his upcoming Saturday nuptials. Hale fellows all, and well met. Big Wes’s best wishes go out to the happy couple.

Sarah and Jim, longstanding friends of the Midwesterners Trio and new friends of Big Wes Turner’s Trio, were there to keep dust from gathering on the dance floor, and when Sarah wants to hear Wagon Wheel, we happily comply.*

Other requests required some deep digging in the memory vaults—King of The Road, Jambalaya, Yellow Submarine, Amarillo By Morning—it got a little crazy.

Up next: The Birddog Band invades Illinois to play The Great Pumpkin Fest in Highwood on Friday, Oct. 9, and Timothy O’Toole’s on Saturday, Oct. 10.

*Regarding Wagon Wheel. The landscape of American popular song is marked with successes that go on to suffer for it (when was the last time you really listened to Wilson Pickett’s Mustang Sally?). They reach a tipping point, they become too universally recognized, they lose all exclusivity, they get covered to death, and then they feel a backlash. To paraphrase the pattering of estimable singer/songwriter Blake Thomas at a recent Isthmus Sessions show, “Hey, it’s not a bad song! It’s not hurting anyone!” Hear, hear! The infectious Dylan-inspired chorus has caught on for a reason. It’s catchy. In the best sense. Come on people! Save your hate for more worthy targets.

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