So what's with Colorado Springs bands going Hollywood these days?
Dave Mansfield & the L.A.M.F's just got back from playing the Whisky A Go Go this past weekend, and now we've got From Slaves to Kings heading there to play the same Sunset Strip landmark Aug. 13.
Billing itself as the "World Famous Whisky A Go Go," the Hollywood haunt is known for launching the careers of bands ranging from Guns N' Roses to the Doors. (In fact, surviving Doors Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger are playing there on the 19th.)
Earlier this week, I ran into L.A.M.F's tour manager/tech guy Mike Steckley, who gave me a quick debriefing. Naturally, there was the obligatory visit to Hollywood Forever Cemetery, final resting place of Dee Dee and Johnny Ramone, where the L.A.M.F's shot video footage for their debut single, "I Wanna Be on Sire." The band also racked up its third week of airplay on L.A.'s "World Famous KROQ" — yes, everything out there is world famous — with legendary DJ Rodney Bingenheimer playing them between tracks by the Mansfields (Dave's old band, now on hiatus) and Le Butcherettes.
As for From Slaves to Kings' Hollywood sojourn, you should know that Jason Coahran and his bandmates wouldn't mind having you come along for free. There's a catch, of course. You need to be present for the drawing at the group's Union Station show this coming Saturday, where some smiling KILO jock will hopefully draw your name and send you and a loved one on your way.
Meanwhile, on the home front this past weekend, I caught a few local bands that are well worth seeing at your earliest convenience. Molly Boyles & Lipstick Voodoo won over the crowd at Stargazers with two sets that seamlessly juggled New Orleanian covers — the Nevilles' "Yellow Moon," Dr. John's "Such a Night" — with equally soulful originals from Boyles and keyboardist Charlie Pendergraft. "You can tell Charlie wrote this song," said Boyles at one point, "because it's got every note in it."
Also impressive was Saturday's Acacia Park show with the Flumps and a violin-enhanced Headhum. More on both bands soon, but in the meantime, definitely check out the Florence-bred Flumps at Shugas Monday. (Also note that the park's free summer series ends this Saturday at 5:30 with the mighty El Toro de la Muerte and Tango Red Tapestry.)
Two more upcoming shows to catch: On Friday, it's the Cool & Back 2 School event at the Black Sheep, featuring SpaceShip Klick (whose "Party Party" track is currently in my heavy SoundCloud rotation), as well as D.Rich, DC & DJ Sh3vy, Thorough Breds, Untam3d Family, Gritty & Yoshi, Front Range Music, Fresh Crew, and Left E. Then on Saturday at Zodiac, it's Dear Rabbit, aka Rence Liam, who'll celebrate the vinyl release of his fine new album. Dear Rabbit's combination of corrugated vocals and cabaret accordion are bound to find favor with fans of Tom Waits, among whom Liam numbers himself.
And as long as we're on the subject of Tom Waits (smooth transition, right?), I have an interview with the avant-bard in a new anthology published by Chicago Review Press. Released this past Monday, Tom Waits on Tom Waits: Interviews and Encounters is a career-spanning collection of pieces written by appreciators ranging from director Terry Gilliam to the Indy's own Tom Lanham. You should really go on Amazon and order it. Or maybe go to a bookstore — if there are still any left — and just read my chapter. It's only 10 pages, you'll be finished in no time.