So Much Music - Roberta's Blog

It’s been a while since I wrote a blog post. Life has a way of making us so busy sometimes, some things just slip out of our grasp. So it has been for me for the last couple of months. Hopefully, things are settling and I will have more time for writing again!

I had also cut back on the number of shows I attend, and I’ve been spreading them out a little as well. Three weeks ago I ventured out to catch what will probably be the final outdoor Wednesday open jam for the season at Bent River. The music was great, the weather was awesome, and the flow artists were in the parking lot showing off their skills. The music will continue, but the weather won’t.

I spent the 17th and 18th of October in a cattle pen/barn in Wapello, Iowa for a flea market/craft show. Since I was down that way, I decided Saturday to check in with a couple of Quad City bands that were entertaining in Muscatine. It seems the QC had invaded Muscatine pretty well, with shows at the Brew and the Rose Bowl, as well as a house show in the vicinity.

My first stop for the night was at the Rose Bowl. I never imagined a bowling alley could be a music venue, but then why not? After all, one of my favorite venues is a barn… right? The Rose Bowl bar has a nice-sized stage with lights, a dedicated sound booth, a decent dance floor, and plenty of seating. Stone Tattoo was the entertainment for the night. I’ve been meaning to catch their show, but my timing has been a bit off – especially with my reduced shooting schedule. I felt pretty fortunate to catch them while I was in Muscatine for an evening. The set I caught seemed to be mostly 1990s grunge and metal covers, but sounded great and played with high energy. Lead vocalist Jason Hamilton was off the stage as much as he was on it, getting out into the seating area and interacting directly with the audience.

My second stop that night was the Missipi Brew and 1st Impression. Word has it that Becky Anson, Lyle Harris, John Biondo and Phil Bonilla are winding down to end the band’s longtime run. More news on that as soon as I know the final date. They will be playing their final Illinois date at Rascals on November 14. On October 17, they introduced new music to the roaring approval of the Muscatine crowd.

In the weeks since my last post I’ve attended a very musical wedding, bid farewell to Mama Compton’s in the District, and participated on the video team for HallowQueen at the Redstone Room. Before I started taking still photos of bands, I used to run a camcorder at shows. It’s been a few years, and I can’t remember the last time I handheld a camera non-stop through a whole set, but it was fun. I kept seeing great photo shots that I couldn’t take though…

Speaking of HallowQueen – In the last two weeks I have attended 3 sold-out shows. HallowQueen (with special guests Have Your Cake) sold out at the door. The same thing happened this past Thursday for Keller Williams. When the doors opened there were only 30 tickets left. And Codfish Halloweeen on the 31st with Nathaniel Rateliff was sold out weeks in advance. Here’s your cue folks – we’re seeing more sold out shows in the QC. That’s great! News of sold out shows piques the interest of touring bands and managers, and can bring us bigger names. But that means plan ahead and get your tickets early! Codfish Hollow sold out many of their shows this year. The Moeller Mondays shows at Rozz Tox have done the same. I expect next year to be even bigger for all of our area venues. Watch the Village Theater for more great music as well.

I’ve also attended a couple of fundraisers of note. In August, Still Standing hosted a very successful fundraiser with multiple bands at the RME. 14 bands came together to raise money for children and families with medical needs.

Moondance 2015 was another successful fundraiser. Lissie performed as well as Jason Carl and the Whole Damn Band. The annual October event was well attended.

While I’m on the topic of fundraisers, I would like to mention that this Saturday the music scene is involved in another fundraiser, this one benefitting the domestic violence shelter in Muscatine. Called the River City Throwdown, Saturday’s event includes twenty bands from the QC and surrounding areas. Bands will perform on two stages at Pearl City Station starting at noon Saturday.

Another Fundraiser of note Saturday is called “For the Love of Music”, raising money to send a talented group of teenage musicians to the International Blues Challenge in Memphis. The group “Juliana & A Soul Purpose Band” will be joined by Serious Business and QC Slim band at the Rusty Nail from 1-6 PM.

I’m working on getting things moving again here at Local Scene. The calendar has been kept up, but now it is time to return to articles and interviews. Have a favorite band you want covered? Or are you preparing to release a new album? Maybe you have a special musical event coming up, like the above mentioned benefits. Let me know. I’ll be happy to put together a feature article.