The year 2017 is upon us, presenting us with the opportunity to start somewhat fresh. Deep-seated character traits/flaws aren't likely to change — more superficial habits are the best targets to take aim at. Some call these resolutions and the rest of us just see a chance to try something different. Perhaps you, like me, don't make it out to as many live concerts as you used to. Sure, it was easier when we were younger and unemployed. We didn't have money — or our current expenses — but we used to live it up with live music, partying until the wee hours. We may not want all parts of that life back but should you want to make it out to more live music in 2017 than you did last year, here are some reminders why seeing a show is a good idea.
Live music is great for a date night. Take the Mr./Mrs. out on the town and relive the days when you met on the scene. It's also a great place for a first date as you won't be able to hear enough to have to talk all night. With that, it's also a great thing to do when a date is going sour. Tired of hearing about your date's ex or baby daddy/mama? Head to a loud show where you won't be able to hear. Shows are also a good place to meet people, romantically or otherwise. I met my wife at The Alibi and I think she still loves me.
On a similar note, if sleeping with a stranger is on your list of things to do in 2017, you look way less creepy rockin' out to a band than you do eye-ballin' at the end of a quiet bar.
If weight loss is on your list of resolutions, dancing is probably the best way to burn some calories — with your clothes on — and have a good time. Get those endorphins released and that dopamine received!
Shows are also great venues for hard drinking. Slammin' some double IPAs and stumbling around on your sea legs in public makes you look like an alcoholic. Doing so during a gig makes you look like you're just someone who likes to have a good time.
Piggybackin' on that last one, going to a live show is a great way to force yourself to take that sick day from work. When you look at your alarm clock through one bloodshot eye, you'll be able to call into work and actually sound sick. If you don't do this too often, no one will suspect that the reason you missed work on Friday is because you finally tried a Long Island Iced Tea at the bluegrass show the night before.
Seeing live music is also a great way to impress your coworkers and friends. As you stand around the water cooler, you'll bask in the admiration of every Tom, Dick and Harriet from the adjacent cubicles who will look at you as someone who sucks every last drop of marrow out of life and hasn't given up. As you shout "carpe diem!" and throw your crumpled up wax-lined paper cup on the ground, your status as king/queen of cubicle land will be cemented as your coworkers look on in awe and wonder when they stopped living.
As my wife tells me, going out to shows is also a "great getaway from the family and adult responsibilities." I couldn't quite tell if she meant it's a "great way to get away from your husband" for a few hours but either way, she has a point. Give the kids their iGadgets, a bag of tortilla chips, and a neighbor's phone number and get the hell out of the house. They'll be just as glad you're gone as you will be. (Kidding. Get a sitter, for God's sake.)
There are plenty more reasons why going out to live music shows is a good idea, and you probably already know them. So what are you waiting for? Seize the night.
It's fair to say that the weekend is close enough for us to start getting out of the house and into the rain. To lighten the gloom, catch some Irish and Celtic tunes courtesy of Seabury Gould and Evan Morden, who will be at Gallagher's Irish Pub in Old Town Eureka at 6:30 p.m. They won't ask any of your money for their music but hey, they might not turn it away either. A few blocks away, you'll find HSU Professor Brian Post and Friends at the Palm Lounge playing jazz standards and original compositions with healthy doses of improvisation. Music starts around 7 p.m. and it's all for free.
Those of us in Blue Lake are aware that the Mad River Brewery Tap Room has been closed for a few days. It reopens tonight with some new taps etc., but equally important is the fact that music is back at the brewery. Get some more jazzy funky improv into your earholes at 6 p.m. delivered by Ultra Secret. This one's free but I'm guessing the local beer on new nitro taps isn't. The Bee Eaters are returning to town for a two-night stint at The Arcata Playhouse. Many of you have probably seen this trio before. With a formerly local brother/sister combo on cello and violin (respectively) and a stellar hammer dulcimer player (dulcimist?) this group consistently awes and delights. Eater of bees Tristan mentions that their shows, at 7:30 p.m. tonight, are benefits to raise funds for the legal defense of George "Adam" Scavelli who is fighting 24-year-old federal charges for "possession of LSD with intent to distribute." Now I can't pretend to know the details of this decades old case but I tend to be wary of the Feds' list of Schedule 1 narcotics and their vigor to prosecute substances far less dangerous than booze. That said, I'm told George's wife and three infants could use the help. $20 tickets for tonight's benefit and kids under 12 get in for free.
Missed The Bee Eaters' benefit last night? You've got another chance. All the info is above. Bee Eaters fans KHUM will be somewhere else in Arcata tonight celebrating the station's 21st birthday as a 100 percent local freeform radio station — still with no rules — with deep roots here in the community. (Full disclosure: I work for the parent company of KHUM, so any positive press I give this show tonight should rightly be seen as kissing ass.) I saw KHUM founder Cliff Berkowitz this past weekend helping out new Blue Lake resident — and fellow KHUM DJ — Bayley Brown move into her new digs, so I'm pretty sure there's no way I can get out of going to this one without looking like a jerk. Come on down to The Jam tonight at 9 p.m. to celebrate KHUM's passing the legal drinking age. Just $5 will get you in the door and you'll hear live music provided by the Honky Tonk Detours and Moon Pine. No word yet on if Larry Trask will be in attendance as I hear there may be reruns of the 2011 World Series of Poker on the tube around the same time.
Local guitar-slinger and engineer Piet Dalmolen will be at the Mad River Brewery tonight at 6 p.m. He'll be doing his solo guitar thing with some electronic gadgets and doohickeys to make it more trippy and interesting. I always encourage people to shout out covers for him to play, as I know he doesn't care for it. He knows a lot of Floyd, so start there. He's playing for free but if you shout out "Freebird," go put $10 in his guitar case.
Full show listings in the Journal's Music and More grid, the Calendar and online. Bands and promoters, send your gig info, preferably with a high-res photo or two, to email@example.com.
Andy Powell is a congenital music lover and hosts The Night Show on KWPT 100.3 FM weeknights at 6 p.m. He's tired tonight.