A classic Tampa night

Friday night was not tightly planned but included an itinerary:

1. Brent Rademaker at Friday Extra concert, Lowry Park

2. Grand opening party of Karma Bar, featuring D’Visitors

 3. Cumshotte reunion at Brass Mug.

I arrived too late to enjoy the dreamy pop of Beachwood Sparks’ Rademaker but got to say hello to him, wife Kate, chihuahua Starsky and the Kelly sisters (former high school friends). He shared that the show was a little surreal but fun. He performed with Joe Lala, a Tampa native who made his name as a member of the Byrds, Manassas and Blues Image.

 “(Lala) was thee go-to percussion cat for three decades,” Rademaker says, “playing with everyone from Neil Young to Ringo Starr.”

Rademaker played a cover of Wake Up Little Suzy to the elderly folks down front and accidentally dropped an F bomb when a string broke.

“I got lost in the spirit of the Burrito Bros’ version of the Everly Bros’ classic,” he says,  “and probably channeled a bit of Gram’s nastier side. Oh well! ALL IN GOOD FUN and for the love of tampa and music.”

A more ill-suited match-up couldn’t have been made that night. Rademaker was followed by a giant brassy wedding-style band, jamming Gloria Estefan, Chicago and Stevie Wonder medleys. 

My companion for the evening, Diviners’ Soraya, and I were approached by a Sexagenerian tantalizingly opening a can of tuna. He shared that it renergized him for boogeying. Lucky us: He invited us to join him.

Who says there are no available men in Tampa?

After being accosted by the third close-talking hippie, we split for the new Karma Bar, fka Kelly’s Pub. Former co-owner Kelly’s took over the space with a friend/business partner to open the reincarnated Karma Bar.

Art from Artcore adorned the walls and Mediterranean-jazzy nosh nourished between beverages. Speaking of which, still the same nifty beer/ale specials can be enjoyed.

Really missed the giant Pete Townshend poster, I have to say.

 D’Visitors performed a spirited set of world beat flava while the place filled with customers all ages.

So, yeah, food = still no smoking.

But the food is mighty good. Nice balance of healthy and decadent.

After, Karma Bar, we headed to Brass Mug. THE MUG! to witness the reunion of Cumshotte (pronounced coomshottay). Accent on E.  Soraya’s friends were in the band that played its last show in 2004.

It’s weird when your friends a generation younger are having reunions. Does that make me a granny?

But the revamped threesome brought aggrolicious grindcore with wacky song titles and stage props. There was a 12-piece drum kit, for starters.  Frontman Bill Demerest conceived a macho douchebag persona by ripping off his blue Oxford shirt to reveal a white T-shirt with suspenders. He also performed bicep curls and cleaved a log on stage.

Demerest then proceeded to get highbrow on the joint by busting out his TS Eliot anthology and read lines from The Wasteland, The Hallow Men and the Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock to a tune called TSOEliot. 

The whole thing came to raucous finale with the Root Beer Enthusiast,  added by a ribald, quite literal interpretation of self-dousing. Friends enthusiastically cheered, waving fists in the front row. 

What a wait beforehand though. Mannnnnnnnn.

The band before (forever to remain nameless) was painfully loud and seriously intense, but I enjoyed one dude up front, whose fluffy and long brunette wavy locks made for a majestic hairwhip. It was like looking at billowy fields of wheat in Kansas during a tornado — but in slo-mo.

The band left a token of their performance: a pitcher of vomit on the drum riser.

So, yeah, sticky floor plus question mark equal a typical night at the Mug.



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