Musings on music, sports, life in general from Quincy, Illinois.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Emmy, Oscar, whatever

Why Travis Yates didn't win an Emmy, Oscar, Tony, Bluey, or whatever they give out for low-budget films shot in Washington Park, I have no idea. Click here for more.

Mike Provine's "Cups N Clips" should win some sort of award, as well.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Personal Warming

From Nigel Tufnel of Spinal Tap fame, when asked about global warming:

"I think it's a personal decision."

More here.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Front Street

Lots of activity on Front Street last night. Thanks to everybody who came out to see us at Backwaters. Bombshell Translator of Doom even made an appearance!

Before we started I wandered down the street in front of cutters and watched Chris Weinand, Big Jon Walker, Jeff Gire and Danny Mabie play ... I apologize for forgetting the name of the band, but they were freaking amazing. That's four of the best players in Quincy on one stage, Chris might be the best guitar player in town.

Forget it. He is.

The first leg of our World Parking Lot Tour comes to an end this Saturday at The Elks during the fireworks. Mighty one will be joining us and rumor has it bringing his new keyboard, too ...

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Water Heaters

So we've been really lucky with the new house. Everything works great and it's solid as a rock.

Except for the water heater.

It quite working this week. So we track down the former owner, who flipped the house (bought it and fixed it up) and did a great job. Turns out he bought the water heater from some "dude" who used to work for Home Depot. The serial number is ripped off, and turns out the heater "sat in the dude's garage for a few years" before it was installed.

It may not be heating water, but I have a feeling it's plenty hot all by itself.

So ... Shey Fey is all fired up because she gets to make another trip across town, and bring back other stuff she doesn't need.

Also on the home front, HUGE poker game last night with the boys from the office. 

Life is good!

Friday, June 26, 2009


We are playing at Backwaters Saturday night. It will be interesting to see how many people show up.

I am not counting a big crowd. There are tons of events Saturday night in Quincy. Blue Eyed Soul is playing at The Dock, and just down the street from Backwaters, two bands are playing outside by Kutters.

Working in our favor is the heat and the fact it might rain Saturday night, which may drive a few more people inside.

We rely on word of mouth, e-mail and the Net to spread the word about our shows. Sometimes I wonder if it's effective, if we need to advertise more.

In the end, we just show up, play and have a blast, no matter what the crowd is like.

But I will admit - a crowd (big or small) that's into the music is a lot more fun to play for.

So ... come on out Saturday night!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

12 strings

So a while ago, geesh, a year maybe, I borrowed an awesome Martin 12-string from Rock A. Bye and restrung it. 

It's been sitting in the case after I played it maybe once or twice, and I need to be hung by the neck until I cheer up for leaving it in there so long.

12-string guitars are awesome and have a rich, full sound. They are also a royal pain in the patootie to tune and keep in tune.

So I dropped it down two steps and that seems to help. 

My fingers on the left hand are chewed to shreds after playing for about half an hour, which means I need to play it more often, obviously .... It even has a thin line pickup (no volume control on the guitar) so I can plug it in to play. There are some Funions songs it would sound good on I think.

Since it's too hot to do much outside, I'll try fooling around with it. Rock A. Bye and I have a Two Deadly Weapons gig coming up, maybe we can get it tuned up enough to actually bring it out in public.

Maybe ....

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Too Hot

It's too dang hot to do anything. But I'm good at nothing. So it's all working out.

The air will be on inside Backwaters Saturday night.

Thinking about financial matters makes my head dizzy. It's too hot to sit on the patio and think about it.

So I'll sit under the ceiling fan. 

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Stormy Show

Much fun at Turner Hall last night, thanks to the guys (and gal) from Midnight Legend and The Cheeseburgers. Thanks to Mark, Pooh, Big Jon and Rollo for everything. Turner Hall is the best! We'll see if we got any good pics and post them later.

Really bad storm ripped through town about 3:30 yesterday. The power went off at The Whig for the first time I can remember. Click here for more storm coverage.

The above photo was taken of our neighbor across the street, and our area had debris everywhere. At the corner a wire was burning a tree way up high and it took Ameren until the wee hours to get over and take care of it. The fire department even blocked our alley behind the house. This morning Shey Fey and I cleaned up more branches and debris.

The good thing is that nobody was hurt. Some buildings downtown look worse for wear.

Friday, June 19, 2009


From Rev. Tim White at last Sunday's Trinity UCC service ....

An elderly man and his wife are in bed. His wife looks over and says, "You never hold my hand anymore."

The old man slowly creaks his tired body closer to his wife and fumbles for her hand.

His wife looks over and says, "You know what? I miss cuddling with you."

So the man slowly and painfully moves even closer and nestles his head under his wife's neck.

She sighs after a minute and says, "Remember when you used to nibble on my ear?"

There's a pause. And the old man bolts up out of bed, swings his legs over the side and begins walking away.

"Where are you going?" asks the confused wife.

"Why, to get my teeth from the bathroom, of course!" the man replies.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Two New Links

Added two links to the page. The first is Travis Hoffman's Q-town, and it's really cool, lots of stuff to see and very informative. Travis worked for us at The Whig for a while and I remember him from his awesome acoustic gigs before he moved a way a few years ago. 

The second is from a guy named Aaron Baugher. I have no idea who he is, but he puts his name on his site and doesn't hide, unlike most of the Web Warriors around here. Some of his entries are ... different. Studying Latin? Okay .... But I like the site.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Breaking Stuff

Here's the proof how much fun our last gig was .... the damaged music stand of doom, wrapped in purple duck tape, hopefully ready for Turner Hall Friday night.

Maybe we can break more stuff.

This is going to be one of the best shows and parties of the year, so don't miss it. We are giving away free cheeseburgers AND Funyons to the first 100 lucky fans. Burt Shackelton is even threatening to bring a microwave so you can have hot and tasty cheeseburgers. No pun intended. And Funions are greasy no matter what.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Crash Goes Music Stand

You know you've had a successful gig at a private party when ....

— The dancing starts five songs into the first set.
— They beg you to keep playing nearly four hours later.
— Your bass player looks at you and says, "We need to learn a few more songs."
— You are playing a guitar solo and a dancer in front of you crashes into your music stand and breaks it.
— You and your bandmates just laugh when it happens.
— You are taking a break and suddenly somebody grabs a microphone and starts singing and somebody else gets behind the drums and starts banging on stuff.
— The host and hostess bring out shots of Uzo for the band.
— Everybody goes home happy.

What a great time at The Spear Compound Saturday night! Jeff bid on us at the CAC auction a few months back, and decided to have a party for about 50 of his closest friends.

Perfect weather, perfect place to play, more fun than should be allowed. Gotta love people determined to have a good time.

Shey Fey took pics, click here for more.

We had The Mighty One playing drums with us since Pat was off bidding good luck to married step-kids, and we played pretty well. Adam brought his keyboard (traction for the lead singer after loading and unloading) and we did some cool stuff like Piano Man, Walking In Memphis and Faithfully.

Jack showed up after a Heidelburg gig and looked sexy in his high socks. He was so into the people dancing and jumping around that we had to yell at him several times when it came time to sax solos, hysterical fun at his expense.

Rock A Bye had a smooth takeoff and landing for Six Days On The Road ... and the good doctor has the gravelly vocal on LaGrange down to a science.

The band made new friends and it proved once again playing music is the bomb.

Give us about a month and maybe we'll recover and we can do it again!

We will regroup and get ready for the huge show this Friday at Turner Hall.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Sports Mirrors Life

Well. What can you say? The Wings did everything but win, everything but put away a pesky Penguins team. I only saw the second half of Friday night's game, and the puck was in Pittsburgh's end the whole time, and the goalie stood on his head. Plus he bounced back from a terrible Game 5 with unbelievable efforts in the next two games.

You just have to give them credit.

That's the great thing about sports, how it mirrors life. Sometimes it's just not fair. You can dominate the opposition and play very well but unless you score, well, it doesn't matter.

The Wings are long in the tooth. You wonder how much gas guys like Lidstrom and Osgood have in the tanks. 

Then again, they almost won their fifth cup in 12 years, and second in a row, something not many pro sports teams can say in this age of salary caps and lack of loyalty.

And .... everybody else has had plenty of tee times this spring and early summer.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Friday Blues

Heading down to Blues In The District tonight. Should be interesting to see how the construction of the water fountain in the middle of Washington Park effects things ... click here for more and a Blues In The District schedule.

Game 7 tonight ...

Playing at a private party Saturday night which should be a lot of fun, we'll have a Compound report Sunday.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Game 7

There's no need for the Game 7 history lesson when it comes to Detroit vs. Pittsburgh in the Stanley Cup finals.

Ancient history lesson, actually. The Wings may have lost in game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals in 1964, but that was the year I was born, which means it was at least 1,000 years ago.

When was the last time the Blues played in a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup finals? Oh, I'm sorry .... NEVER.

Let's look at more pertinent Game 7 history, shall we?

Detroit is 11-1 at home this season. The home team has won each of the last six Stanley Cup Finals Game 7s dating to 1987, and no road team has raised the Cup following a Game 7 since my Montreal Canadiens did in Chicago in 1971.

Pittsburgh could easily win Friday night if Fleury stands on his head like he did in the third period last night.

But I like Detroit's chances.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Poison Stage

This might be the funniest thing I've seen in a long time ... glad nobody got hurt.

See, Poison needs a Stonehenge set so when you get bonked it won't hurt ...

Monday, June 08, 2009

Smart Golf

When you play golf with the boss, it's always a good idea to let him win.

When you play golf with the boss on the same four-man scramble team, it's a great idea to win the tournament, the big cash prize that goes with it, and thank him profusely for making a key birdie putt from the fringe on a tough par 3, then chipping in for eagle on one of the closing holes.

But ... "I don't play golf for money, and I never slice ..."

Saturday, June 06, 2009

50-yard line

Had a blast playing at the Relay For Life inside Flinn Stadium Friday night. 

The Funions have played some interesting venues, and this was one of the coolest. Thanks to Pat for the sound, Dave for being behind the board, and  special thanks to keyboard player extraordinaire Steve Buckman, who jammed with us and did a great job.

This just in ... Rock Cola is BACK!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Send Off


Didn't come to the funeral today. I hate funerals. Sorry, man. 

I went to the cemetery for the graveside service, and it was a beautiful God-kissed morning.

It took 20 minutes for all the cars to come in. People were lined up across the street in South Park.

One of the clergy told a QPD Honor Guard member he'd never seen so many people show so much respect. Vehicles pulled over and people on the street stopped in their tracks to bid you farewell.

Last night at visitation, your father looked at me through tear-stained eyes and he said, "Matt respected you."

A greater honor has never been given.

I'll come by once in a while, Greenmount is just a skip away from Calftown.

Rest easy, Matt.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

No More Line On The Horizon

So we had a big garage sale last week at Shey Fey's old house and I sold a boom box.

Yesterday I bought a much smaller CD player with a lineout so I can plug my lap top into it, and my iPod.

I grab my No Line On The Horizon CD and open it up to christen the new CD player — but there's no disc in the case.

I left it in the old boom box.

So. If you bought a fairly nice boom box at a Calftown garage sale last weekend and found the U2 disc ... help a forgetful brother out, wouldya?

On second thought, never mind. He's a lame-brain and he doesn't deserve to get it back.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Huge Funions Update

Just added two shows ....

This Friday we are playing at the Relay For Life inside Flinn Stadium, 7 p.m., everybody is invited and there is no charge.

Saturday, June 27, BACKWATERS! More details to follow.

Go Wings Go

Haven't had much time to follow YOUR defending Stanley Cup champions as they motor through the playoffs yet again.

You might not like hockey or the Red Wings, but nobody can deny they are a dynasty, and that's a rare thing in today's pro sports climate.

Pittsburgh must win tonight so you'll see some pretty desperate and entertaining hockey.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Matt's Funeral

Visitation for Matt McElfresh is 4-7 p.m. Wednesday at Our Reedemer Lutheran Church, 2701 College, Quincy.

Funeral 10 a.m. Thursday at the church.

Initial obituary is up at the funeral home Web site, click on the obituary link.

For my Whig blog about Matt, click here.