Local Live

Friday, January 16, 2009

Kingbees Open Mic, Mondays at the Boiler room where you can't play too loud!

Last Monday, my buddy Franko and I showed up at the infamous Boiler Room, a small bar on the busy side of Broadway, Eureka. (You can't miss it, the only building that looks like a 57 Chevy painted with side flames) As I made my way past the neon signs, bar perchers and pool tables, I could see my old pal Lester belting out his own style of outlaw rock. Next to him strumming away, is the host Kingbee, with JP on Bass, Dave on drums, Rockin Rick on Harmonicas and Joe on keyboards. I wanted to get a feel for what kind of crowd was there, so I hung back in the shadows for a spell. Being a regular there, Franko makes himself at home. He walks in, sets up his amp, tunes his guitar and joins in with the boys. Its just that friendly! Really! Now, that doesn't mean any anyone can walk up and start jamming; there is a certain code of honor when attending these Open Mikes. Generally, one either asks to join in or waits to be invited. Kingbee is very good about giving stage time to others, yet, not afraid to give gentle reminders to any over-enthusiastic players. ( I believe the term is Ball Hogs)

Everyone that wants to play, gets to play. After some liquid courage a smoke, I strolled in and set my bass up in the corner. When the time was right, Kingbee approached me and gave me an idea where I stood in the lineup of players. Frank and I started out with a little number byParliment "I Just Want to Tell You", then we went through some rock standards and I even got a chance to premier my own composition, "Endless Maze". The boys joined us on stage while we rocked to some Rolling Stones, Violent Femmes, Ted Nugent and even Iggy Pop! Of course, one of the other players heckled us when we took too long to start, muttering "Blah, Blah, Blah" as he passed by the stage. I quickly shot out,"Heres a song I wrote , and I'd like to dedicate it to that guy. It's called Blah, Blah, Blah!" Turns out he was one of the two guys playing Metal Instrumental with only guitar and drums, with a surprising full sound. It wasn't too bad, but the ego of the guitarist was almost as big as his hair, while making what must have been intended as sexy moves. (I thought his guitar strap was bunching up on him, but, I could be wrong. ) He was pretty entertaining for mindless virtuosity. I think he was trying real hard to impress these two young ladies enjoying cocktails at a table up front, one of which got up and played a few numbers on the drums. She was pretty decent for such a waif, and you got to give her credit for stepping up to the stage with all that testosterone amidst.

Some cat with a flat top hair do played a bunch of Jimi Hendrix covers with a slight heavy hand, but still decent. I don't know, but, it seems people equate loud with good when playing at these venues. Not so. I was wincing a few times at the off notes when hit. The louder you are, the more mistakes are noticed.
Justin Brown and his posse showed up to celebrate his birthday (30?) and we all jammed with him.

The stage is small , but accommodating, the drinks okay, audience so-so. However, on the positive, Kingbee provides a mike and PA , Bass Amp, and usually a decent drummer or two in the house. The show starts at 9:00 PM, but get there earlier and sign up if you want to be in the early line up.

Keep on Rocking Kingbee!