DO THIS ON FRIDAY: Midwest By Southwest 2012 tour@ The Blue Fugue

Midwest By Southwest 2012 tour this Friday March 9th The Blue Fugue at 9pm. These bands are on the way to play South By SouthWest (SXSW) or the “place you’d rather be seeing shows”.

Whenever Cincinnati bands/musicians tour, I try to let people know. It’s one of those cities that when you live there you say “if this was somewhere else, it’d be huge”. Or if you’re a musician there, you also say “this is bullshit, imagine if we lived in Brooklyn”. I cut my musical teeth on the mean (not really) streets of Cincinnati Ohia (my mom pronounces it “O-Hi-Uh”). I moved there from the best state in the lower 48, Kentucky, way back when the internet and all banking systems were set to explode-The year 2000 and have played some of the best shows in front of the best people there. Outside of the suffocating nature of far-right christian conservatism, GOP city/county domination, and annual Christmas time crucifixion crosses hosted by the Klu Klux Klan, I met an amazing set of friends, comrades, artists, rebel-rousers and rockers that I still keep close. There’s also a stellar music scene that gets national news only when a band moves out of the city and acts like they’re above it now-see: The National, Heartless Bastards, Afghan Whigs, Oh and that awesome pic of Iggy Pop crowd surfing was from Cincinnati too, etc.

I met the good folks in The Sundresses back in 2003. They played a Books Not Bombs show that I organized at my alma mater and it smoked. The Sundresses went on to make a couple of incredible records since then and have extensively toured the U.S. Imagine a punk rock band stuck in Memphis right after Brown vs. Board. Anti-racists playing music in the midst of the violent white backlash. Imagine the politics of the period, the convergence of some Old Crow-soaked speakeasy mixed with front porch hollerin, cranked fender amps, and fucking trombone. It’s Lead Belly using Muddy Water’s gear with Nina Simone’s snarl, and the jump-boogy that connects it all in a really weird way. It’s all over the map and delicious. CoMo doesn’t have this so get it while it’s in stock.

Listen to The Sundresses “An American American”

 Wussy is the good therapy session that you walk out of on Friday and plan your weekend too. Dueling vocals that fit that duel-voice narrative in your head that argues the merits of whether you should buy some “party supplies” from that dude Gary or just commit to being a shut-in. At once melancholy and at the other hyperactive, all wrapped inside addicting melodies and primal rhythms. I hated 90’s college rock for the most part (that includes the Pixies) but this stuff is on another level, different. The production on all their records is flawless in my opinion. For chrissakes, the New York Times and Village Voice are in on the pile up. They’re a huge draw back in the ‘Nati and should be here too.

Listen to Wussy “Muscle Cars”

The Whiskey Daredevils from Cleveland are also along for the ride. They remind me of fistfight between two guys that have brand new cowboy boots. They’re nice guys but those boots are brand-fucking-new, like the tags got cut off right before they walked in. Uber-clean country twang hot licks that won’t be found at a Mitt Romney Revival. There is pierced tongue as a leftover from bad decisions placed firmly in the cheek of most of their songs. I like to think that they’re one of the guys fighting Brad Paisley in that boot fight.

Listen to Whiskey Daredevils “Skulls” via the Misfits

Oh Me My ,from the greatest state in the lower 48, Lexington KY, are also tagging along. Big soul vocals make this a winner already. These kids clearly have been raised on WRFL (Ky’s version of KCOU, but back in the day, way better). If the Flaming Lips listened to more soul records and did less L.S.D. and had more sex, this is what would’ve happened. Somewhere along the way of listening to more soul records they got hooked on low-fi garagey stuff. That Wayne dude is super weird and one of the FL dudes now lives in Newport Ky.

Listen to Oh My Me

The Midwest by Southwest tour hits The Blue Fugue for the first stop on an epic 10-day run to Austin, TX and back, featuring of some of the best bands the Midwest has to offer. 

(hear ’em all at:

 The Midwest By Southwest 2012 tour, presented by the Bunbury Music Festival, is spreading the Midwestern musical love to and from the South by Southwest (SXSW) music festival. 

CoMo Arts: events & shows

I always hate to discover that I missed out on an event, and I would be devastated if that to happen to you. 🙂 So here is a little round-up of Columbia’s upcoming art events and shows:

Make a point to swing by the MU campus, you have to check out the 18th Annual Women in the Arts gallery show. It goes until April 1st at the Craft Studio Gallery in Memorial Union, find hours on their website. Only a couple days left to visit this show, but it’s worth it!

Here is a chance to get involved in the community of music and art: If you’d like to volunteer at Roots N Blues N BBQ this year (in September), you should visit the Volunteer Fair on April 7th from 5:30 to 7:30 at ARTlandish Gallery. There are more details on Facebook.

Birthday by Anastasia Pottinger, courtesy KBIA

Columbia Art League’s current show is their annual tribute to the True/False film festival, Based on a True Story. It runs until April 16th. Their next show is called Red and runs from April 19th to June 18th. The opening reception is on Thursday, April 21st. CAL always puts on a good show, so make sure you stop by.

PS: Gallery’s spring exhibit runs through April 30th. If you have yet to check out their new location, go visit and kill two birds with one stone. I saw the show and the pieces are amazing.

Natalie Hellmann

The George Caleb Bingham gallery on MU’s campus is hosting Natalie Hellmann’s thesis show from April 4th to 27th. The reception is on April 8th from 5 to 7 pm. Natalie will have her ceramic sculptures and drawings on display.

And one of my favorite recurring events, the Craft Studio’s Craft Sale will be held on May 5th, 10 am to 1 pm, the location is TBA. They hold a sale every semester as an opportunity for the students to sell their creations, and to raise money to help fund the next semester’s classes and events. For the first time ever, they are allowing a limited number of faculty and staff to sell at the sale, too. In fact, you might even find some of my products there!

Of course this isn’t a complete list, I just gathered what I could. If you know of any other events or shows – please leave them in the comments and I will add them to the list!