400 Years of What

Had some fun this weekend, starting with a visit to Aquarius Star’s Om Cafe Friday night, where the free menu party was packed.











For a quick update to some of the new things happening at Aqaurius Star Om Cafe, here’s a link to a recent blog entry I wrote:

Link to Aquarius Star

After the menu party my friends and I dropped by Mediterranean King, which was also packed, and while we were there we learned something important: on the right night this restaurant will keep its doors a little past their posted hours. Which was good, because were hungry:

Mediterranean King Restaurant









Here’s a link to a recent blog entry I wrote about Mediterranean King. To that post I will only add what a friend said while we were there, in response to how fresh the food was: “It’s like eating at home.”

Link to Mediterranean King

From there we visited the Bockfest downtown, where Jim Tarbell was in full regalia:









At MotrPub a group named The Steepwater Band was performing music what sounded to these ears like an early 1970s combination of blues and boogie; the band I most thought of was Savoy Brown (and it turned out, when I talked to band members after the gig, they’d opened for that band). I videotaped part of their performance of Robert Johnson’s “Crossroads.” This was after the sang all but one of the verses. Things got quieter and sparser and then built up slowly – great music, and a band I look forward to seeing again:

On Saturday night I called my buddy Nelson Slater and said let’s go to the Platter Party Records fundraiser at the Rake’s End on Central Avenue, and I’m glad I did. Turns out Nelson used to trade sets with 400 Years of What back in the day, and Nelson had a chance to trade memories with the leader of the band, Gordon Hickland. (The fundraiser was being held in order to help pay for the double LP of a live 400 Years of What show that was caught on tape.) Here’s the mayhem we witnessed upon entering the party:

Chris Burgan  was DJing. He’s told me before that when he DJs his favorite song to play is James Brown’s “Talkin’ Loud & Sayin’ Nothing,” which features then-local musicians David Matthews, Michael Moore, Jimmy Madison, and Kenny Poole. Chris said it always packs the dance floor, and true to form folks got moving as soon as that song came on:

I had a chance to meet Gordon Hickland from 400 Years of What, who was there with his wife Wilma, owner of Wilma’s Treazures in Northside (4008 Hamilton  Ave to be exact; the phone there is 513.693.2922. They took this lovely picture together:









Gordon showed me some pictures of him and his bandmates. With this one, he explained that one night there was a hot pants contest and the winner would win $200. Eager to pocket a little extra cash, he dressed for the occasion – and won (he’s the guy on the right.









Part of the fundraising involved a raffle, and for the first time ever, I actually won something! My prize was three albums that I was interested in because I liked the album covers. After I won them I learned that the owner of the label, Pete Fosco was there, and I had a chance to meet him. The label is Greenup Industries, and their focus is on experimental music, which is right up my alley. I’ll focus on the Greenup Industries record label in an upcoming blog.

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