Favorite song: "Haim, 'Forever.' They played after us at this tiny bar at SXSW, but I missed it because I volunteered to get the van so we could load out. But everyone who saw them was blown away. There were days over the summer where I couldn't stop listening to this song. Runner-up: Ross Brown, 'Small Victories.' A song that's entirely familiar and yet unfamiliar the first time you hear it. I love it."
Her parents had apparently installed monitoring software on her computer and phone and made unannounced visits to campus where they accused her of drug use and mental-health issues. The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that her parents were barred from Ireland's performances by school security. After the couple decided to stop paying Aubrey's tuition, the school offered her a scholarship for her final year.
"There were nights when I had to leave my Skype on all night," Ireland told GMA. "And my mom would watch me basically sleep."
Well, first off: best tour name of the year. And how good those times will be depends a lot on your partiality to the soulful R&B sounds of the 1970s. At the top of the bill is the Chi-Lites, most famous for hits like "Have You Seen Her" and "Oh Girl." Opening is Bloodstone, a soul-funk act originally from Kansas City that briefly dented the Billboard charts in the '70s, and Kharizma, a local 11-piece R&B act.
Saturday, December 29, at the Midland, doors at 7 p.m., $35.50-$42.50.
The Embarrassment, a group of Wichita smart alecks that tasted underground fame playing twitchy post-punk in the early 1980s, is correctly remembered as one of Kansas' musical treasures. Many fans of the band followed singer and guitarist Bill Goffrier on to Big Dipper, the acclaimed, nervy guitar-pop act that he slid into in 1985 after moving to Boston. In November, Big Dipper released Big Dipper Crashes on the Platinum Planet, its first new album of songs in two decades. It's full of weird, wry pop-rock tunes and is a bit reminiscent of Guided By Voices. That makes sense: GBV frontman Robert Pollard is a huge Big Dipper fan, and Big Dipper named a song on Platinum Planet after him ("Robert Pollard"). Goffrier performs here with a new collaborator, Karlee Dean, but I wouldn't be surprised to hear cuts from his various other endeavors.
Saturday, December 29, at RecordBar, doors at 6 p.m., $10.
Sonic Spectrum Tribute to the Rat Pack
Class is coming out the ass at this special holiday-season edition of the Sonic Spectrum Tribute Series. "The Rat Pack is the main focus, with some tracks from other crooners as well," organizer Robert Moore says. That includes a set from the Sammy Bacon Juniors, which is not an item on the Wendy's dollar menu but rather a group featuring members of Deco Auto, the Quivers and Dolls on Fire. Also performing: Anna Cole (backed by members of Latenight Callers and the Jorge Arana Trio), Jerad Tomasino of Everyday/Everynight, Hampton Stevens and Barclay Martin.
Sunday, December 30, at RecordBar, doors at 7 p.m., $7.
This is a new concept for Kansas City. You can buy beer here to-go or to-stay (from one of the taps or after selecting a bottle from the wall of coolers). Bier Station also has a small food menu - think bites to accompany a beer - with Farm to Market pretzels and BobKat-Dan cheeses. Back in September, Fat City talked to owner John Couture about his plans for the former Mezzaluna and Carly Sue's Family Diner space. Bier Station will be open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 11 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday.
Runner-up: Lemonade, with Le1f (with Sheppa and Norrit) at FOKL, June 9. "There were amazing atmospheric projections over a haze of fog at the Lemonade/Le1f show. I walked away wanting more. I also was glad that I got to experience it in a venue that does so much to help foster and give a platform for local creative talent."
Best Performance: Carnal Torpor @ Psychfest.
And now Imbibe has named him its 2013 Bartender of the Year. They've also printed his recipe for the Pendergast, a bourbon and sweet vermouth cocktail that is indeed praiseworthy. And the buzz out of the Crossroads is that 2013 could be just as big a year for Maybee and the Rieger - they're rumored to be working on bringing back the whiskey that once shared the hotel and restaurant's name.
Plus, it's only $18.50, which would be $18.50 very well spent, friends. You might want to get your tickets early.
The year 2013 will kick off with a new restaurant in a historic location: Sosa's 39th Street Diner will take over the building at 3906 Waddell that served as the home for Nichols Lunch - for several generations, it was Kansas City's favorite 24-hour diner - for over eight decades. Many Kansas Citians have their own "late night at Nichols Lunch" tales or memories of other iconic local restaurants that have vanished over the years.
KCUR 89.3's Central Standard Friday's resident historian Monroe Dodd will be the special guest on Friday morning's Food Critics edition of the program to discuss Kansas City restaurants of the past with me, Gloria Gale and Chris Becicka at 10 a.m. We'll discuss restaurants that we wish were still around as well as famous dining rooms of the past - the Wishbone, for example - that were razed before many of us ever got the opportunity to visit them.
You can join the conversation by calling 816-235-2888.
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