Sunday, September 26, 2010

OysterFest – a HUGE success!

oysterfest Still reeling from 14 hours of nearly nonstop music at OysterFest yesterday. Great day all around!

Especially great sets from Burning Hotels, Jukebox the Ghost, Via Audio, and Telegraph Canyon. And Rhett Miller, as usual, played his ASS off for a good hour, and probably lost 10 lbs in sweat alone.

A special congratulatory shout out goes to the staff at Lochrann’s, who worked late on Fri getting ready, then busted their butts for 14+ hours on Saturday. I can’t even imagine how tired they all were, but every single staff member I interacted with was friendly, glad to see the business, and hard at work.

I have no idea how many people wound up attending, and I have no idea how it turned out financially. I hope it was a huge success, enough so we can look forward to the 2nd Annual OysterFest in 2011.

Great job, everyone involved!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Frisco’s attempt to become a music destination gets Observed

neon_rock_n_roll_ The Observer has a nice little article on the efforts of Lochrann’s, Wellhouse, and Spune to bring live music to Frisco. Those efforts are, I think, beginning to get some traction.

Lochrann’s Thursday night shows, featuring everyone you could ask for from the local scene (Orbans, BAcksliders, O’s, Telegraph Canyon, Seryn, etc) and a bunch of touring acts as well, started as a leap of faith. And let’s not kid ourselves. Lochrann’s is not Double-Wide, and probably never will be. Live music needs a little bit of an edge. That edge is a lot easier to get in Exposition Park than it ever will be in Frisco.

But, regardless, Frisco is on the map, musically. The leap of faith appears to have paid off.

The bands keep coming out. Lochrann’s has kept the doors open for a couple of years now (and not everyone in the neighborhood can say that). And the biggest gamble yet is coming this weekend – OysterFest, an all-day, all-night food/beer/music blowout inside and outside, which has been planned and publicized for months.

I’ve had opportunity to speak with a few folks plugged into the music scene far more than I am. Consensus seems to be that Lochrann’s is a good place to play in terms of getting paid. The bar treats bands well. The set up is good to very good. But, the audiences are still the weak link. Patrons seem to want to carry on their conversations rather than listen to the band. There isn’t much reason to hang around after your show is over, so the late-night musician-gathering still gravitates to Dallas. Or the band members just go home.

OysterFest is here, finally, and it will be very, very interesting to see how it goes over, with the musicians as well as the paying public. I have no sense of ticket sales or expectations of the crowd size. The line-up of bands is pretty impressive. I am optimistic. I think the folks at Lochrann’s are as well. Success in this effort (and I have very little idea what constitutes “success”) will pave the way for more events.

A real, thriving live music scene, a well-hit 7-iron from my front door, would be a dream come true. Pub, from the Observer, press releases, or ridiculous little blogs like this one, can only help.

Monday, September 20, 2010

OysterFest is less than one week away. So get with it!

oysterfest Dallas-area CIT peeps, you’ve had your TV Guides circled for weeks, and it’s almost payoff time: The Inaugural Lochrann’s OysterFest is this coming Saturday, Sept 25.

The schedule for both stages is posted, and it is awesomely awesome in it’s sheer awesomeness. The food will be legendary (and includes a lot more than just oysters). The forecast is for perfect beer-drinking weather.

So, what are you waiting for?

For those of you who have not yet take me up on it, my offer stands: Let me know and I’ll be happy to pick up $15 tickets for you in advance at the bar. Or you can order online and pay a service charge. Or you can pay $20 at the gate.

Whatever. Just be there.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Igor - strong, but no worries for land

We mentioned last week that we were going to keep an eye on Igor, and so we have.

Igor has started the slow turn to the right, and the models agree it isn't going to come close to land until, maybe, the Canadian Maritime provinces. So no worries for you and me, unless we're in the trans-Atlantic shipping business.

Daily YouTube: A fun little ditty

Mount Righteous, from Grapevine of all places. They will be at OysterFest in a week and a half. How about you?

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

A storm to watch – TS Igor

While the DFW Metroplex of Love deals with the remnants of Hermine, there’s a new storm off the coast of Africa that may bear some watching.

Already a tropical storm, Igor (not sure if it’s the traditional “Eee-gor” or the far funnier “Eye-gor”) is tracking straight across the Atlantic. The curve to the north appears nowhere in the 5 day track, and the storm is projected to strengthen to Category 2 by Sunday.

Chances are it will start the big, slow turn to the right before it gets anywhere close to land, but I’m going to keep my eye on this one.


The Quran-burning idiots in Florida

terry_jones I whole-heartedly support the right of every American human to make an idiot out of him- or her-self. It’s our God-given right to be stupid and to let everyone know it, if we’re so inclined. Hence t-shirts that say things like “Fart Loading” (complete with Windows-inspired progress bar), Wal-Mart, and UFC.

Most idiocy harms no one and reflects poorly only on the specific idiot or group of idiots. No harm, no foul. Just a giggle.

But, from time to time, a group of idiots transcend their own idiocy and do something so asinine, so mind-bogglingly stupid, that it rubs off on others around them. Sometimes the idiocy in question is so egregious, it reflects on society in general and actually threatens lives.

No, I’m not talking about American cultural exports like Coca-Cola, KFC, and Lady Gaga. Although the description applies to all of them too.

I am talking about the True Believers at the cynically named “Dove World Outreach Center” (three lies for the price of one) in Gainesville, FL. These are the imbeciles who plan to have themselves a little Quran-burning party on Saturday, which happens to be the 9th anniversary of That Day.

I am at a complete loss to understand the upside to this action. What good could possibly come of it? Burning holy books? How many things are wrong with that little three-word question?

This impossibly stupid, intolerant, and dangerous move has at least served to introduce us to grey Kaiser Wilhelm mustache and polyester sport coats of Rev Terry Jones, for all the good that does us. I hesitate to judge anyone who is being excoriated in the media, but it’s hard not to in this case. If a man is judged by his ideas, then Rev Jones needs to be on life support. Or, actually, not.

Who supports this idea? I guess Jones’ demographic does – white, deeply religious, big Southern dummies. I further guess some part of the people who oppose the “Ground Zero Mosque” like this idea too, although I think the argument about the mosque has a lot more validity than this exercise in dip-shittery (by the way, I think the building of the Islamic center in lower Manhattan is a fantastic idea – what better way to show the tolerance and, really, the greatness of America?). Does any other human with a shred of intelligence think this is a good idea? What positives could possibly come of it?

The military, the Afghans, moderate Muslims, the Vatican, the Euros, everyone has come out against the idea in the strongest possible terms.

Does anyone think this is going to “teach radical Islam a lesson”? Muslim radicals will use this event, if it occurs, to inflame the uneducated masses in the Islamic world. There will be violence. There will be destruction, injuries, and deaths. Some of those deaths may well be Americans.

Rev Jones, are you prepared to have that blood on your hands? Because it will be.

Are radical and uneducated Muslims wrong to go on rampages because someone sets a match to some paper? Of course they are. I don’t support their rights to start violent protests. But I can’t do anything about their reaction. They are what they are. And what they are is predictable.

If we know what the reaction is going to be, why on Earth would we perform the first action? Do two wrongs make a right?

And aren’t we supposed to be the tolerant ones? Wasn’t this country founded on, among other things, the idea of freedom of religion? Hell, aren’t we better than this?

By preventing a mosque being built, or burning a stack of holy books, we are abandoning important, long-held principles. And we are playing into the hands of the radicals. We are doing their recruiting work for them. They want to portray the West in general, and the US in particular, as anti-Islam.

Say what you will about President Bush, but he did go out of his way to make it clear we were not at war with Islam, only with the radicals who perverted the religion for their own purposes. That message has been lost.

Now, with these actions, we virtually guarantee the world-wide perception that the US is, in fact, anti-Islam. Because that’s exactly what these actions are.

I’m embarrassed by these idiots. I have no wish to be lumped in with them. I have no desire for anyone to think they speak for me. I resent their hypocrisy, their attention-seeking, and their smug self-righteousness.

Hey Rev Jones, if you feel so strongly, if you REALLY want to make a statement, I’ve got a suggestion for you: Why don’t you fly your stack of Qurans over to Kandahar and set ‘em alight in the street there?

Not much really drives me nuts, but…

Now that the NFL has returned (and, with it, the much-anticipated CIT weekly college and pro football picks), I have been subjected to the two words in the English language which make me the craziest:

Da. Boyz.

This artificial nickname for the Dallas Cowboys, a joint by-product of an early 90s Saturday Night Live bit the white man’s need to sound “street”, raises my blood pressure instantly. Its like a red cape to a bull. When I hear it or read it, my teeth gnash of their own volition.

Dallas is really a terrible sports town. It’s the home of the front-runner, the band-wagoner, and the knee-jerk over-reactor. Sudden expertism and sports obliviousness run rampant. Everyone from the 20 year old receptionist at your dentist to the guy changing your oil to your neighbor Bob has a theory on why the Cowboy offense grinds to a halt in the red zone, and an opinion about who should be the weak-side linebacker in the nickel.

I have, over the course of the past 15 years or so, gone from Cowboy fan to Cowboy hater, back to fan, and now find myself mostly disinterested. I enjoy Sundays as much as the next guy, but the during-the-week knee-jerking, and hot sports opinions from the great sports-unwashed absolutely drain my will to live.

What set me off on this mini-rant? I just got an invitation to a game-watching party (INSTANT red flag – do any real sports fans go to “watching parties”?) to view “Da Boyz vs the Deadskins” on Sunday.

My options after receiving the email: Slip into a six-month coma, or go rail on the Internet. So here I am. Thanks for listening!

Monday, September 06, 2010

Almost time for OysterFest!

oysterfest If you are in the northern half of the D/FW Metroplex of Love, you will want to circle your TV Guide for Saturday, Sept 25.

Lochrann’s (our favorite Irish pub, located about a 9-iron from Chez CIT) is throwing its inaugural OysterFest – a full, FULL, day of beer, food, local and national bands, and all around awesomeness.

Who’s there, you ask? Well, here’s a partial line-up:
That’s a PARTIAL list, This is one of the biggest local shows in recent memory, by far the biggest live music event at little Lochrann’s.

You can get tickets online, at Good Records, or at Lochrann’s itself. I’m willing to be ticket delivery boy – it’ll save you the service charge, but you gotta get in touch with me directly.

I can’t WAIT for this show. It promises to be great fun. Don’t miss it!

Friday, September 03, 2010

Media + Hurricanes = Stupid

stupd_media_n_hurricanesReading the coverage of Hurricane Earl this week has reinforced my long-held opinion that major media outlets devolve into barely literate baboons at the mere mention of the word “hurricane”.

Earl has been tracking well east of the N. Carolina shore for days now. It would have taken a significant deviation from projected course for the storm to do anything other than drop some rain and kick up some surf on the Outer Banks. Of course, deviations from the models happen all the time, and its always worth keeping an eye on what was, at one time, a Category 3 storm. But I had problems with the story being above the fold for four days.

Today, after Earl stuck to project course and (amazingly) dropped some rain and kicked up some surf on the Outer Banks (and, to be fair, caused some minor wind damage to power lines and flimsy structures like gas-station overhead), we see the predictable “we dodged a bullet” stories in the press.

We also, predictably, get pictures of every tiny bit of damage the legion of photographers in the area can dig up. The one that made me snort coffee thru my nose this morning was the photo above, of a guy paddling a kayak thru about 4 inches of water. The SUV splashing by with no apparent effort, right next to him, and the grass on the curb which is not under water, gives you an idea of how hard the photographer had to work to set this shot up. I can nearly guarantee Ed Earl (or whatever the kayakers name is) stared incredulously at the photog and said something like, “You want me to do what? There isn’t enough water there to float my kid’s tub toys!”

Stupid media. Stupid readers, some of whom, I guarantee, put their hands to their mouths and whispered , “Those poor people. The government needs to help them!”