Stuff to do, 2012: Last full week of April

Thursday (as in tomorrow), I’ll be doing a solo acoustic set from 5-6 p.m. in support of the 24th Annual Charitable Truck Raffle for Brantwood Children’s Home. Come out and enjoy some barbecue, hear some music, and if you’re feeling lucky, raffle tickets for the truck are $100.

After that, stop by Head on the Door on Vaughn Road. Starting at 7:30, you can see art work on display by Winfred Hawkins. Winfred is a talented artist and musician. He did the cover art for the Hail the Titans album “Hymns of Mare Nostrum.” (Also be sure to click “Like” on his Facebook page.)

On Friday, IAMSIX Promotions and Hardcore Media 316 are presenting This City Awaits at Rock Bottom on the Eastern Blvd. The Texas-based band is touring through the area. Openers include My Hearts Cry and local band Creep List. It starts at 7 p.m. $10 at the door.

At 10 p.m. The Black Racers show begins at Head on the Door, with opening band Japanese Rabies (a side project, featuring some of the members of Japanese Women.)

And on Saturday, The F’n A-holes will return to Head on the Door. They’re a fun band from Mobile.

Did you miss it?

If you missed the “Dude Looks Like a Lady” woman-less beauty pageant, then you missed out. There was a great crowd, and it was a hilarious night for a good cause. Of course, if you want to see the incriminating photos and video, check out this article: “Montgomery dudes dress like ladies, raise money for Joy to Life Foundation.”

Hello Gorgeous has a photo set from the event on their Facebook page.

Thanks to everyone who stopped by Organic Hippie on Friday to get a car wash, cupcakes or just to dunk someone in the booth. And thanks to Organic Hippie for holding the event, Bad Mustache Beanies and for all volunteers we had helping out. We’re getting closer to our goal. We’re currently at $1,235 online, not including what we made on Friday. There are just over three weeks left for us to get to our $4k goal. Click here for the info and the perks.

Also, if you haven’t seen either of the two shows that Denzy and the Denzophonix have played so far, you need to find out when they’re playing again and make plans to be there. They put on a very fun show.

Props to Helicity Montgomery for successfully reviving the Montgomery Street Fair. This was a great event with music, fire breathers, art, acrobats, hot dog eating contests and much more.

One of the highlights for me was Tatsuya Nakatani doing a solo percussion set.

The photo of the fire-breather was taken by Enlove Photography and Design.

To see a portion of what you missed, check out this video by Josh Pittman of the Bearded Man Film Company:

And here is video of the hot-dog eating contest, taken by River Region Media Pros:

Music, men in makeup, car washes and cupcakes…

Did I miss anything?

This Thursday… tomorrow… is the “Dude Looks Like a Lady” woman-less beauty pageant, where a group of guys (yes… including me) will be in full make-up, wigs and dresses in a beauty pageant. It starts at 7 p.m. at AlleyBAR. The requested $10 donation (you can always give more) benefits the Joy to Life Foundation that provides free mammograms to medically under-served women in south central Alabama.

Also, Mike Ill is performing at Head on the Door later that night, and Creep List is playing at It’ll Do Tavern. No cover at either of those shows.

On Friday, 4/20, you should come out to Organic Hippie on Vaughn Road and hang out for awhile. Starting at 11 a.m., they are holding a car wash to benefit Hail the Titans to help us get a new van. (Also, maybe washing cars will help get some of the previous night’s makeup off my face.)

I’m told the event will also have a dunking booth. I think Trey will be making some stencil t-shirts, and Bad Mustache Beanies will have some items for sale. Also, Wes’s sister will be showcasing her culinary skills with a variety of special cupcakes that we picked out (and even helped come up with recipe combinations of our own.) I can’t remember all the names we made for them, but there was the “Squeal Like a Pig” cupcakes, “Goat Blood” cupcakes (sounds very “metal” right?), the “Gay Arnold Palmer” cupcakes and lots more.

DJ Krystoph starts at 6 p.m., and the store doesn’t close until 10, so it’s an all-day event. Many thanks to Stacy and the Organic Hippie staff for helping us out like this.

And after the store closes, you might as well stick around as right next door – at Head on the Door – BPM will be playing with special guests Denzy and the Denzophonix, who I have heard nothing but glowing reviews for since their performance last week at the Looking Up Records debut party.

Also that night, starting at 7 p.m. the Hotheads are playing out at Tipping Point in the Hampstead. I also hear that the Pine Hill Haints are playing a house party in town that night in the Capitol Heights area. (I really wish this town had more house parties. Those tend to be very fun shows.)

On Saturday, Helicity Montgomery has been working on bringing back the Montgomery Street Fair. Check out their website for more info on all the events going on in the downtown area. The official flier for the event looks like it has artwork by Winfred Hawkins on it. I hope I’m right on that and giving credit where it’s due. He’s got an art show coming up next week. More details on that soon.

The Montgomery Street Fair is from 3-9 p.m.

And that night, Bonejackal is playing at Head on the Door.

Bands I miss: Christiansen

Years ago, when there was a really nice festival in Birmingham, Ala. called “Furnace Fest,” I saw a band called Christiansen. They caught my attention, and to this day, their “Emphasizing Function Over Design” album is still as good today as it was then.

I found a 2005 interview from that describes them as “a mix of Fugazi, Thursday and At the Drive-In,” and I can see that.

“Emphasizing Function Over Design” and “Stylish Nihilists” are both on Spotify, and both albums are really good. Lots of energy. They are different, though. The first is more like older At the Drive-In, and the latter album is much more aggressive.

What reminded me of this? I watched some of the At the Drive-In reunion performance from Coachella (see below) and listened to the song “Lopsided” (starting at 11:35). Listen to that… well, watch the whole performance because it’s good, but pay attention to that song, and then listen to the first Christiansen album I mentioned above.

So… yeah… in the news…

The hesitancy in the title of this post has nothing to do with the story that ran yesterday about the Hail the Titans van fundraiser. In fact, the writer of the story did a great job talking about the aspects of our campaign.

The article, titled “Montgomery band Hail the Titans will write a song for you if you’ll help them buy a van,” includes a photo and video, along with detailed info about the campaign.

But today’s article has me and some other guys in makeup, wigs and women’s clothing, and that’s where the title’s hesitancy comes from.

Yes, it’s true. You can read about it and see it all in this article, titled “Montgomery men to compete in Dude Looks Like a Lady beauty pageant.”

The pageant is a fundraiser for the Joy to Life Foundation, an organization that provides free mammograms for under-served women in south central Alabama.

The event is on Thursday, April 19 at AlleyBAR, so if you want to come see me and group of other guys dressed up as bearded “ladies” for a good cause, show up at 7 p.m. with at least a $10 donation. Oh, and vote for yours truly, Ms. Joshilyn Carplet of Forrest Hills.

Get out of the house this week

There are quite a few things going on this week, and the weather has been very nice recently, so get out of the house and do something.

Atlanta has a great show on Wednesday. Capillaries is having a CD release show with Odist and Set and Setting. That is at the Drunken Unicorn. Hear Capillaries here:

On Thursday, AlleyBAR in Montgomery is hosting the Looking Up Records label debut party. The show will feature performances by Looking Up artists Denzy and the Denzophonix, Distant Kin, Project Paperclip and BPM. Starts at 8 p.m. No cover.

A big music festival is going on in Mobile this weekend. SouthSounds Music Festival goes from April 13-15 at multiple venues.

On Friday, The Revivalists, from New Orleans, will return to AlleyBAR. That same night, Head on the Door is hosting Skeptic? with Kill, Baby… Kill.

On Saturday, our friends at the Squeaky Lizard in Ocean Springs, Miss. are holding a benefit show for two people. The bands include Unicorn Screwdriver, St. Anne’s Revenge and Corner Stone. The benefit will help two families with ties to the Plug Uglies – one member who was injured in a motorcycle accident recently, and to help cover funeral expenses for another member who recently died.

Also on Saturday, Head on the Door has Creep List and Kids on Coffee.

So… we could use a new van

You may have heard that Hail the Titans is looking to upgrade our van. It’s true. And yes, we’re asking for your help.

We’ve set up an IndieGoGo website to help raise money, complete with a video and certain perks that we’re offering in exchange for your monetary support.

Everyone in this band loves music. It’s deeper than just “what we do;” it’s who we are. While we all have regular jobs to cover our personal bills, we spend as many weekends and off-days on the road as we can get booked. Yes, the glamorous life of an independent musician that includes sleeping in a van and on floors (when offered), not showering for days, putting what money was made at the last show into the gas tank, gas station bathrooms, lots of coffee, etc. All of this allows us to go from city to city, state to state, even on weekend jaunts.

But this year, we made a goal to try to expand our audience further. We play around the Southeastern U.S. regularly and continue to do so, but this summer, our goal is to take this band further, so we’ve started booking a tour. Some dates have already been confirmed, including as far away as New York and New Jersey. This is why a more reliable van is necessary. And this is why we need your help.

We launched the fundraiser last Monday, and as I type this, we’re currently at $475 of our $4,000 goal. Thank you to everyone that has given so far (and who may be planning to give during this campaign.) Every little bit counts, which is why we started the “perks” at just $5.

We appreciate all the help we’ve gotten so far (both in the campaign and the tour.) The following bands have been a great help on this tour, and I highly encourage you to check them out and support them: Swank Sinatra, R_Garcia, Megan Jean and the KFB, Grandfather, Mammox, Grass is Green. Also thanks to Say I Won’t Records.

Along with the online fundraising campaign, the store Organic Hippie is helping us out by holding a car wash on April 20. So on 4/20, you can get your car washed for $4.20.

The car wash event starts at 11 a.m. The event also has music, with DJ Krystoph starting at 6 p.m.

Many thanks to Stacy and the Organic Hippie staff (which includes our drummer, Trey) for helping the band out.

Jackson, Miss. has a great new record store

On Saturday, we headed to Jackson, Miss. to play at the grand opening of a new record store there called Morningbell Records.

We left Montgomery, heading west on Highway 80, and about half-way to Selma, we made a stop, turning around actually. Wes noticed a vehicle flip off the road on the east-bound lane, so we turned around to check on the people. Other people, including some nurses, were also stopped at the scene.

There was a vehicle, sideways, in the ditch area. The two people were outside of the vehicle – one man laying in the grass and the younger person standing beside him. Both of them were alive, but against the advice of the nurses and everyone else around, the man on the ground jumped to his feet instead of waiting on medical attention.

As there was nothing else we could do, we turned around and headed toward Jackson again.

We got to Morningbell Records in time to catch Sun Hotel‘s performance. We had played with them previously at a show in Mobile. It was good to see those guys again. After them was El Cantador, from Mobile. I’ve heard of them, but this was my first time seeing them. Good stuff.

We played after El Cantador. It was a lot of fun, and the record store is great. While the bands were playing, people were listening and shopping, buying new and used albums on vinyl and browsing CDs from signed and local artists.

It’s a great store, so if you’re in or near Jackson, I encourage you to stop in and check it out.

Before leaving Jackson, Wes, our friend Dillon and I all went to a restaurant called Burgers and Blues. Apparently, they’ll be on the show “Man vs. Food” on April 18 for their “Whammy Challenge.” The “Challenge” is basically eating more than four pounds of food and finishing a milkshake in less than 25 minutes. If you can do it, the meal is free. (Any subsequent doctor visit is not.)

And of course, what meal in the South is complete without a complete stranger, angrily jumping in a calm, lighthearted conversation among friends to tell you that the president is a Muslim?