Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Dive Time

Every town has a place where the weirdos hang out. If you're a small town weirdo, you hang out in the woods, and smoke weed. In Tallahassee, Fl. we were lucky enough for a time to have a dive bar/live music venue called The Cow Haus.

Personally, Tallahassee would have been pretty unbearable without The Cow Haus, and it's fifty cent Natty Lights. I easily saw well over a hundred shows there, within the span of just a few years. Sometimes going two or three times a week. In the meantime I was working twelve hour shifts at a printing plant, and buying speed, and weed off of coworkers.

My life was in a period of upheaval. I was living in the aftermath of a break I had with my family that continues to this day. I'd lost all of my friends I'd known since childhood, and a five year relationship with my girl was in ruins. It sounds depressing, and times were undeniably dark, but it was a new beginning. I just did shit because I could. It took my mind off of things.

On the bright side, I had my own apartment. It was a shit hole, but it was my own place. Be that as it may, there was a place across town that was my preferred hangout. You guessed it, The Cow Haus. A big part of that was due to the music scene.

There were some great southeastern based bands that would play there seemingly all the time. Not just death metal bands either. Bands like The Causey Way, and Dirty Poodle would drive up from Gainesville. Jucifer would come down from Athens seemingly all the time. I saw Queens of the Stone Age play a sold out show there in support of Rated R. I have a scar on my hand from when the singer for the opening band (Pigeon) broke a glass bottle on the stage. Glass sprayed everywhere. He apologized to me at the urinal.

The Cow Haus kept it weird. Your more mainstream acts and wannabe's played at the larger venue a few blocks down, Floyd's Music Store. This being the late nineties/early millennium, you'd find the Nu Metal acts, various Limp Bizkit clones, and fake orgasm contests there. It's closed now.

For me, The Cow Haus was home. It was my Cheers in a way. I still remember when the bartender from the jazz bar Waterworks won the Halloween costume contest at The Cow Haus, and she noticed I'd recently had a haircut. And then there was the Cow Haus bartender who gave me her number but never would go out with me. She ended up playing bass for the band Mira, a great band.

Okay, so of all the local and regional bands I saw there on a regular basis, by far my favorite was Syrup. They were a winning combination of Kiss, Russ Meyer, and Big Daddy Kane. They called it "pimp rock". As far as I'm concerned, they were the jesters of southern rock.

Syrup is just one legions of local bands, from local dives, all across the world that never made it. But entertained a shitload of people despite their obscurity. As far as I'm concerned you could do a lot worse.

My days of calling my local dive home are over. I'm a domesticated dude, and I have a wife and mortgage. That's too much real world shit for dive bars. That's a young mans game. As far as The Cow Haus, it's moved a few blocks down and changed it's name to the Beta Bar. I went there once to see Nashville Pussy, and Artimus Pyledriver play. It was agreeable but not the same.

So enjoy this peek at some of the souvenirs I've saved from those days, and support your local dive. 

Syrup jersey:

Syrup video for the "Slim Bullfrog" anthem, Sexy Swimmin' Hole (not my vid):

Pics of the band I took at a Cow Haus show:

Pigeon t-shirt:


From The Archives: Allison Robertson Circa 2002

Some bands deliver something fresh when they play live. You can play their albums to the point that you know the songs well. You can sing along. Then when you see them live, they shake it up a little. They'll speed it up a little here, they'll slow it down there, and toy with the audiences expectations while still delivering the goods. They keep it interesting.

The Donnas don't do that. What you hear on their albums is exactly what your gonna hear when they play live. They play it safe. After seeing them twice, several years apart, I doubt I'll go see them again. They're boring to watch live.

Their songs are solid though. So I'll still buy their albums, for what that's worth.

Anyhow, this is a pick of Allison Robertson I took around 2002 when they were touring in support of Spend The Night. It was taken in Seattle, at what is now known as  El Corazon.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Spoiler Alert: Rolling Thunder DVD Case Gives The Game Away

Rolling Thunder is a slow boiler of a film. It's a graphic depiction of PTSD soaked vengeance. The only way to get it legally, is to buy the manufactured on demand DVD from MGM. It being made on demand, I don't have high expectations for the dvd sleeve and whatnot. However, I am glad that I've seen the movie before, because the back cover, as rudimentary as it is, takes spoiler to a whole new territory. It literally gives the movie away. So don't read it if you haven't seen the movie. The rest of you can just shake your heads in disbelief.


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Giggles For Guzzlers: Beloved By Maniacs World Wide!

Be sure and check out my other blog, Giggles For Guzzlers. It's a collaborative effort that features vintage laffs, gags, and shenanigans. It is also home to the MAG Follies podcast, which you should listen to promptly!


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Empire Jazz: The Jazzy Side Of The Empire Strikes Back

I lost my passion for Star Wars a while back. I can still find enjoyment in some of the original trilogy, but basically I'm done with it for the time being. But lets set all of that aside and take a look at this curious bit of ephemera. Most of us have heard the disco version of the cantina music. But this jazz bit isn't as well known. So check it out, and enjoy the jazzy side of the Galactic Empire.


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A 1981 Vanessa Del Rio Pictorial

A Vanessa Del Rio pictorial from the December 1981 Velvet Talks magazine.


Hambo: First Rap Part II

You've seen comic Lou DiMaggio on Curb Your Enthusiasm. Now listen to him on this eighties novelty rap album, as Hambo.