It isn't often when you go out to a local show that you actually enjoy all of the bands playing. Unfortunately, I must admit, I did miss one of the bands on tonight's bill. So, I will be reviewing the other 4 bands that I was able to catch: Las Cabriolas, Stuck Lucky, Murphy's Kids, and Brownie Points. All of these bands, except for Brownie Points are on tour currently for the Southern Ska Tour. This was also the only show on the tour featuring all 3 of the bands that were on the tour.
First and foremost, credit for this show needs to be given where it is deserved. If it weren't for clubs such as Happy Daze, in Deland, Florida, this show might now have been possible. The people at the venue are always willing to book up and coming bands, and give them a stage to cut their teeth on. For this, I have to take my hat off to Kathy, and Bonnie, the proprietors of this fine establishment. And for those who think it is just a place for 30 year olds to start a pit with a bunch of kids, you are sadly mistaken.
When I arrived at the venue early, the first of the bands were just starting to get into town and get their gear set up. This gave me a chance to sit down and talk with a few of the guys from the first band of the night, Las Cabriolas . They were some of the most genuine guys I have met in a while. Hailing from Boone, North Carolina, this was the bands first tour. Now these guys set sounded great. With the use of old school organ and keyboard sounds, they really started to get the early crowd going with songs such as, "Mi Ma Mi Ma", "Leaving Town," and a cover of the Special's "Nite Klub". If you get a chance to see these guys on a bill, go check them out.
The next band of the night was Stuck Lucky, a 5 piece ska band from Tennessee. To me these guys sounded a lot like Operation Ivy when I first started listening. A lot of their songs were fast to mid speed punks songs, some of which their rhythm guitar player, Christian, put down his guitar and picked up his trumpet. This was the only reason I think they are labeled as a ska band, but a good band none the less. Their last song of the night, a cover of Operation Ivy's "Unity", really started to get the small crowd of about 50 people on their feet, dancing around.
Third to take the stage this night would be Murphy's Kids, a 7 piece ska band from Richmond, Virginia. Of all of the bands on tour tonight they were my favorite. Their lead singer reminded me a lot of Spring Heeled Jack. The bands tight rhythm section and a blaring horn line, consisting of 2 trombones, and a trumpet, left the crowd wanting some more at the end of their set. Not to mention that their bass player was a tree with feet, this guy all of 6'10", I shit you not. To end the night they played a cover from one of my favorite bands of all time, The Pietaster's "Up All Night". If you are in the Richmond area, take advantage of it, and check these guys out.
Now on to our last band, the headliner of the night, and one of my favorite local bands, Brownie Points. This was about the 6th time that I have been able to catch these guys act live, and they always put on a rocking show. Anyone who hasn't heard of them, they are a 5 piece rock w/ horns outfit from Daytona Beach, Florida. This was also the first night that their saxophone/vocalist Danny Ferri had played the bass guitar in front of a crowd, and he did a great job. Every song had a great musical lines, and heart-felt vocals. The crowd at the show was just able to feed of the energy of everyone is the band. Just one glance up at the stage and you could see that, from Nathan the drummer's heavy kicks, and yelling every lyric out, to Josh and Doug, the horn section, dancing around and having a good time. Jim, the guitar player, also had a great feel with the crowd, joking between songs, and really getting the crowd into the show. Uncle T, a local musical conesour was even quoted after the show as saying, "You're the baddest mother fuckas I've ever heard."
All and all, it was a good night, of great music, good drinks, and of course cool people.