Friday, 2 November 2007
Marilyn's rocks - you shoulda been there!
Yeah, that's me, last night at Marilyn's - if you missed it (and most people did!), don't feel too devastated. I had technical difficulties with my guitar, and the resulting nerves - a rarity for me onstage - had me on the run the whole night. Call it a dress rehearsal. It can do nothing but get better.
I write not for sympathy, but to say that Marilyn's should have been packed last night. Not for me, but because it is one of the best places on the Grid to hear live music. Last night, I was just the happy hour guy - at about 8:30, Richard March and his band took the stage, and rocked the place up with March's brand of traditional honky tonk, bolstered by a great band that is only getting better with all the gigging they've done. March himself has a smooth, authoritative voice, and writes some solid honky-tonk songs.
And guitarist Steve Randall is so good that he had a guitar-playing friend of mine - no slouch himself - swearing he was going to call Randall for lessons.
And March's band was just the opening act (not sure what that makes me): the headliner was a band from L.A. called David Serby and the Sidewinders, who put the honk in honky-tonk, just ripping off one lighter-than-air shuffle after another, right in the pocket and featuring yet another great guitar player. It was great. And there were about 25 people there!
Which prompted a couple of friends to ask: What is UP with Sacramento and live music? Is it THAT hard to get out on a Thursday night? Do people just not know what's going on? Are people THAT scared of K Street Mall? Is television really THAT good? Were there that many other things going on that only 25 people had nothing else to do?
These are questions that have been out there for not just years, but decades. Marilyn's has a great stage, a wood dance floor, a good sound system that doesn't blare and blast your ears into oblivion (thanks, Donny) and a bar with cheap drinks. The parking garage at 10th and K is safe and well-lit and easily-accessed, and Marilyn's validates up to $5! And the cover is cheap, barely more than the cost of a rental at Blockbuster.
Part of what I want to do with this site is let people know what's going on in a way that doesn't feel like a mass of information coming at you from, say, Ticket or SNR. I pick and choose, which means I'll miss stuff, but I also try to give you my honest opinion, as I have for 30 years.
Right now, my honest opinion is this: Live music is a thrill, and there's still quite a bit of it on the Grid. I'm open to suggestions, and I'm open to being off-base, but I'm NOT open to the idea that the best option is to either sit at home and watch the video, go to a movie or eat out. With Old Ironsides, Harlow's, Empire, Luna's and other venues bringing in live acts, I want to encourage you to go check stuff out. There's a lot going on, as Marilyn's proved last night.