'06 Pandemic Poll, the Brodie Fucking Hubbard edition
TOP 5 PHOENIX EVENTS I'LL MISS
"Uncle Sku's Clubhouse" - This children's show for adults, hosted at the Trunk Space every First Friday by pedophile T-Bone Hadley (actually, artist Pete Petrisko), has always had its share of talent, including Ryan Avery as the former man-boy sidekick Caspar. Things have got even weirder with Rusty, a handicapped boy played by pudding wrestling superstar Babs (who also makes appearances around town as Simiana the Belly Dancing Monkey). December's episode had "Grand Avenue LIVE" host Kevin Patterson reading Michelle Bledsoe's illustrated children's story about a teddy bear raping toys under the Christmas tree, appearances by recent "Wife Swap" contestants Jeremy and Anna from CutThroat Freak Show (with Will "Baby Man" Windsor as their fictional daughter Heidi Lynn), an undressed Andrew Jemsek (2006 New Times Best Polka Band Award Winner) stuffed in a golf club bag, The Nourishment's Archbishop Jason Poland playing both a renegade UPS driver AND Andrew's fictional tone deaf brother, Bebe McPherson (of Tucson's Bebe and Serge) singing the most demented Christmas songs ever at the top of her lungs (between puffs of her inhaler), and a ninja who leapt out of a trunk that had sat conspicuously in front of the stage for over an hour.
Willow House Monday Night Open Mic - This event is not only one of my favorites because I have been running it for the last few months. Before that, Dave Gironda (Workshirt Wonder) did an excellent hosting job, entertaining the crowd with covers of Weezer and his favorite ska songs. Despite the fear the words "open mic" conjure in more skeptical audiences, this night actually has had a deep well of alt-country, anti-folk, and indie rock talent, including Robin Vining (Colorstore, Sweet Bleeders), Sean Bonnette (Andrew Jackson Jihad), Joshua Watts, Jon Douglas (A Technicolor Yawn), Ben Horowitz (Porches), and new host Zach Burba (iji, Seashells). There have even been appearances from touring acts such as Fast Heart Mart, That Damned Band, Ryan "Wolfman" Booth, and A Vision Of A Dying World. There is always an element of comedy, usually interactive with the audience, and some of Arizona's great eccentrics make spoken word and a capella appearances.
Scratchy Rekkids Night - Shane Kennedy, who has drummed for Go Big Casino, Campo Bravo, and Lonna Kelley and the Reluctant Messiahs (now known as The Broken Hearted Lovers), is also a damn fine deejay. He started out guesting on the dance night that Bikini Lounge has on Tuesday nights, but his record selections were more old fashioned. The bar was so impressed with his taste, he was given a night of his own, where he plays the best from the 50's, 60's, 70's, and 80's, with a few novelty records or indie tracks sprinkled in. You can go many different places in the Valley for dance music, but this is one of the few you can go to for GOOD music.
"Grand Avenue LIVE" - Formerly known as "Grand Avenue Tonight," this live talk show, which takes place at Trunk Space every first Thursday, was first hosted by Ryan Avery with Andrew Jemsek as his sidekick. For the past few months, Kevin Patterson has been hosting with me in the co-host position. In both incarnations, "Grand Avenue" has had a teriffic series of guests, spotlighting Phoenix's wide array of characters. Debbie Easley from Easley's Costume Shop, thrift store entrepreneur Corey Busboom, spoken word legend Bill Campana, and illegal street artist Coax have appeared, and this month's show features Leslie Barton's first interview since leaving Modified Arts.
Wednesday nights - As "Phoenix New Times" website content changes, the print editions are dropped off at the newsstands. Valley scenesters wait with bated breath too see if their name has made it in the week's new issue. If not, they look for mention of their friends. And failing that, they can always complain about who has been put on the cover or is being discussed in "Revolver," and how the weekly is "running out of things to write stories on."