July 26, 2007
The Record Bar
Photos and review by Richard Gintowt
Man, oh man -- St. Vincent is the shit. I suspected as much after giving her new album Marry Me a couple spins, but Annie Clark and company's show last night at the Record Bar was Ron Burgundy's balls and then some.
Annie Clark, aka St. Vincent
No disrespect to the fine folks at Danny's Bar & Grill in Lenexa (13350 College Blvd), but who the fuck booked the Start there this Saturday? That's like booking Garbage at Governor Stumpy's in Waldo -- but at least that would be closer to Midtown, which is where most of the people who would go see the Start happen to live.
Somehow I fear that this will not help Kansas City's reputation as a music town.
In the meantime, our sister paper in St. Louis, The Riverfront Times, got an interview with Start singer Aimee Echo, who, after snacking on hotwings in Danny's tomorrow and laying down the electro-dancepop for a bunch of suburbanites, will head to the Creepy Crawl in St. L., a more appropriate venue. Read it here or after the jump.
How much do you love freshly baked chocolate-chip cookies, cute puppies and sex? That’s how much we loooove leaked corporate documents. This missive from Embarq Senior Vice President of Human Resources Ned Holland was sent “To all employees” today. (That’s always ominous.) We transcribed it as it was read over the phone by our source. It says that the phone company, which was spun off from Sprint, is cutting health coverage and life insurance for Medicare-eligible retirees. Because, when it comes time to cut costs, the old people always get it first.
To all employees:
Today we are announcing changes to our retiree benefits program designed to better balance the needs of Embarq retirees, employees, shareholders, customers and other stakeholders. Maintaining our strength in a fiercely competitive, perpetually changing industry such as ours never has been tougher than it is today. Outside competition, outdated regulatory policies, and out of control health care costs force us to challenge the status quo. Staying competitive sometimes requires that we make important choices. The changes being implemented will affect our retirees in three areas: Medical benefits for Medicare-eligible individuals and Medicare-eligible dependents, company-provided life insurance, and the Embarq matching gift program [which matches Embarq employees donations to nonprofits and alma maters].
The Hill, a D.C. newspaper that usually covers Congress, announced its fourth-annual list of the “50 Most Beautiful People on Capitol Hill.” The write-ups make for entertaining reading, thanks to The Hill’s vapid, breathless writing.
The hotness is broken down into a top 10, plus “40 more.” In case you care, “tall, dark and handsome” Indiana Rep. Brad Ellsworth took top honors. The paper's “Most Beautiful Office” (gag) award went to Rep. Mary Bono’s whitebread (and one Hispanic) group.
I scoured the list to see if anyone from here is on it. Sure enough, we Midwesterners are pretty, too! Not top-10 pretty, but at least runner-up attractive.
One of the biggest Kansas City restaurant mysteries of the last year has been: Will any local restaurateur be brave enough to take over the ancient venue abandoned by Nichols Lunch 10 months ago? The legendary Nichols Lunch wasn’t just one of the last independently owned, 24-hour diners left in midtown. But at 85 years old, it was one of the oldest continually-operating restaurants in the city when it locked up the doors September 24.
Yesterday, “Mama” Jan Imber and Ira Auerbach, owners of the 10-year-old Bell Street Mama’s diner at 1726 West 39th Street, confirmed that they had signed a lease on the Nichols Lunch location at 39th Street and Southwest Trafficway and had already started renovation on the space.
We recently ran across this video on YouTube, which baffled us. Using a Sopranos-like logo, its plotline involves mafia-type sales reps in The Kansas City Star’s advertising department yelling obscenities into the phone and blackmailing clients with naughty pictures of adulterous encounters with Bazooka's Showgirls.
"I've been desperately pining for a vibrant, regularly updated web site dedicated to jazz in Kansas City," wrote blogger Bill Brownlee last Saturday on his blog about life, Happy in Bag.
So what'd he do? He started one. The Wayward Blog welcomes Plastic Sax to the local music blogroll. Bill's new blog has an insanely long list of local jazz, soul and even some hip-hop artist links. It's got everyone from Oleta Adams to the Yards.
Happy schoolin', Bill.
By the way: Bill continues to maintain his MP3 blog, There Stands the Glass.
July 23, 2007
Better than: My last birthday party.
By Jason Harper
You're in a Scottish band that was at its commercial and critical peak back when Coldplay was hot. It's your birthday and you're playing a show at a midsize venue in a college town in the summertime, when all the kids are away. It's a Monday night. Tickets to see you are $35. What do you do?
If you're Fran Healy, frontman of Travis, you rock out and have fun. Then you blow out your candles and have a piece of cake.
After entering from the back of the venue to the theme from Rocky, the men of Travis, clad in brightly colored boxing robes, mounted the balloon-littered stage, took their guitars from their roadies, and launched into "Selfish Jean," off the band's new one, The Boy With No Name.
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