Yellow cabs fry in the sun like eggs. It's a game and we'll play more in a minute, but first.... I'm always writing about this column or myself in this column or on myself, but this week it's time for something new. Public service. Talkin' phone etiquette. The record command on my phone here cannot be used at this point. I'll do you a favor and fix my greeting as soon as I can figure out how (give me a month or two). In exchange, all I ask is that you call, and that when you call you leave me your phone number. Yeah, I know I have your phone number on file somewhere. But what you don't know is that I get approximately 12,000 incomings every day. It's about time; I definitely want to talk to you, so help me out.
Day by the River has helped themselves out with another victory in the ongoing Yamaha-Soundcheck thing. After showcasing at Dan Marino's, DbtR was chosen as one of five finalists in the U.S. The band, which copped a four-track taper and three grand for this win, heads to L.A. at the end of the month to play at House of Blues. After they win that, they go to Japan for the international finals. Represent, dudes, represent. The River also is recording a song called "Understatement" for a compilation CD being put together by Bryan Adeline and the crew at TRS Recording Studios in South Miami. Ten to fifteen bands are donating songs, Adeline says, with the intention of raising money for Friends of the Everglades. They hope to complete the project for Christmas release. You can reach TRS at 667-8481. And you can catch the River tomorrow (Friday) at Stephen Talkhouse with Arlan Feiles opening.
On Saturday Andrew Sussman, along with opener David Bustamante, plays the Miami Institute of the Expanding Light as part of the folk club's acoustic underground series. Call 382-1282.
Out on the periphery, it's Shuttle Cock at Plus Five tonight (Thursday). Some Loud Lullaby shares the bill.
Big, big changes at a couple of the standard-bearers. Tobacco Road is changing its live music programming, says Iko-Iko frontman Graham Drout, to make it more "musician-friendly." All the live music will now take place upstairs, which means there's no cover to get in downstairs, and that the featured act will play from 9:00 p.m. to midnight, with Iko taking over for the rest of the evening. The club also is fixing up its P.A. The new format begins this weekend. By the way, Iko has added bass player Mike Mennell, formerly of Woody's Orphans, to their stellar lineup. And Tropics, on South Beach, has been remodeled into the Texas Steakhouse, with live music all over, including the outside area, where the Roach Thompson Blues Band returns to South Florida to play this weekend.
The Backstage is open at the Park Central, with Gerald Dimitri and Wendy Pedersen performing all weekend. Beginning Tuesday through the following Sunday Valerie Tyson holds forth at the new venue. And from now until whenever the great saxman Leo Casino (seen last week on one of those daytime teevy talk shows -- Maury, I think) wanders the grounds jamming.
His shoes colored the floor with mud. Okay, here's how this game works. Get two people, some paper, some pens. Each person writes a list of nouns. Trade papers and write a list of verbs. Then make sentences using combinations of the verbs and nouns. Say you choose the noun "apple" and the verb "rub." You might write, "Sour apples were rubbed the wrong way." At least my wife would. She made up all the cool sentences in this week's column.
Big blast this Sunday at Blowfish's Wide Open Mike Night at Squeeze. Rooster Head is the featured act. The following Sunday it's Second Son.
Blues buster Fleet Starbuck performs at this week's Friday Night Live party at South Pointe.
Call the neighbors and hide the kids. An excellent week at the bookstore Borders. Tomorrow (Friday) the masterful Peter Betan performs live. On Saturday my fave writer, Carl Hiaasen, signs his book Strip Tease beginning at 7:00 p.m. On Sunday there'll be a reading of short fiction by members of the local chapter of the National Writers Association. And on Tuesday Professor Ted Lampkin brings his barbershop-based chess club to the yuppie crowd.
Tomorrow (Friday) Crunch Symphony, Company Kane, and Slave share the bill at Plus Five with Christopher Alvy and Beyond Salvation, profiled elsewhere in this section. On Saturday Dore Soul cranks up at the club, which is closing down for good soon.
Parricide, who have a new EP out, play Reunion Room tonight (Thursday) and the Cellblock on Tuesday.
Applications from those performers who would like to take part in the next South Florida Folk Festival are being accepted until September 30. Send tape and bio to Sue Crago, PO Box 19508, Plantation, FL 33318.
Huh? I Don't Know. They play Squeeze tomorrow (Friday).
Hey kids, I hold here in my hands the brand new 1994 edition of Musician magazine's Guide to Touring and Promotion. At eight bucks, the guide is indispensable for those working within the music industry. Check it out.
I suppose I should explain here that this week's cute animal photo -- sorry, but rats are not cute -- comes from Christopher Gregory (the one on the right). Mozart (the one on the left) is, Mr. Gregory explains, a "rat about town." Mozart attends poetry readings at the Gallery of the Unknown Artists, cruises Ocean Drive, and was the hit of the Gucci Christmas party last year. Mozart, I should point out, does not like boa constrictors.
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Very kind letter from Laura Sue Wilansky, a jack of all trades -- or is that a jill of all trades? -- who performs musically under the name Silver Nightingale. That would include her show at the Hiroshima Vigil this Saturday at George English Park in Fort Lauderdale. Call 981-6584 for details. And by the way, Laura, I bet you're wrong. I bet I watch more teevy than anybody. And I'm damn proud of it, too.
Butthorn of the week: WCIX-TV (Channel 6) for running the same two or three episodes of Family Feud over and over. C'mon, dudes, watching the Feud is the most important thing in my life.
The media circus: I know y'all caught our boys the Mavericks on Dave Letterman's show last week. But how about the night before, when Dave was hyping Thursday's guests? "Where are these guys from, Louisiana? Texas?" Some of you who called me up politely suggested that Dave's a dope, but I think he was playing off the fact that not too many great country bands hail from Miamuh, Florida. At the end of Wednesday's goofing, Dave noted the band's true hometown. Dave's cool.
Pet corner: As of this writing, two foxes, some skunks, an armadillo, raccoons, alligators, woodpeckers, mockingbirds, blue jays, night hawks, and two bats were depending on you for their continued survival. They are some of the residents of the Wee Care Wildlife Center, which helps injured wildlife. Wee Care has been at this for years, and just recently lost its lease. Some $25,000 is desperately needed so Pat Knox and the other good people at Wee Care can buy a house with about an acre of land, build new cages, and continue their important work. They also need to find a suitable site. If you can help in any way, call 666-3929. Forget the etiquette. This is serious.