A couple of notable shows this weekend to mention: Scott Campbell, leader of the Sillies and co-owner of the legendary Bookie's punk club is hosting another "Bookie's Anniversary Reunion Show," tonight (Friday, March 12th) at the Rack & Roll Club in Riverview (13634 Sibley Rd., 734-283-3100. A film documentary on Bookie's will be shown, photos and posters will be on exhibit, and live music by the Sillies and Mikal (with Michael Gurrey) plus special guests from bands that played Bookie's in '78 and '79. 18 & over; $5 admission. (Here's hoping Scott eventually hosts an anniversary party closer to home that features a couple of the legendary bands that appeared on Bookie's stage back in the day...) Also, Khalid Hanifi of Ann Arbor's Map of the World fame is playing with his band (which features George Bedard) at the Lager House tomorrow night (Saturday, March 13th). Khalid -- whose band was signed to Atlantic Records in the early '90s -- will also be playing live on Ann Delisi's WDET show on March 20th. The dude recently had a song placed on NBC's Mercy show. His new download-only single, "Hog Futures," is available by clicking here as well as at iTunes. And Fred (Saturday Looks Good To Me) Thomas' City Center will be opening for Ted Leo & The Pharmacists' show at the Crofoot tonight.
Critical Bill, Detroit's "urban rock specialists," are hosting a CD release party for their latest CD, The Underground Kingdom, at Mt. Clemens' Emerald Theatre tomorrow night (Saturday, March 13th). It's the group's fifth full-length and their first since parting ways with a major label (SMC/Universal/Fontana). A free CD will be given to every patron who purchases the $10 admission. Doors are at 6 p.m. and it's an all-ages show. Also on the bill: Stellar Drive, Hell Rides North, Lithium and the Madonna Brothers.
Jim Diamond -- he of the spectacular guitar solo on Doop & The Inside Outlaws' fantastic cover of Broooooce's "Prove It All Night" at the Blowout Pre-Party -- is going to be working on a new record at his studio with power-pop icons Paul Collin's Beat. Jim's also working on a new album with Rationals leader/Sonic's Rendezvous Band singer Scott Morgan. That project also features Matthew Smith, who produced Andre Williams' forthcoming "comeback" album on Bloodshot. Busy crew!
In all the madness of Blowout, we neglected to mention two noteworthy music deaths in the Motor City last week. So for posterity's sake -- We were saddened to hear of the death of Ron Banks, 58, who founded the legendary Dramatics here in Detroit and whose smoooth falsetto voice took the band to the top of the R&B heap with such hits as "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get"... A death that received less national attention was the passing of Craig Webb, who was in the second lineup of Frijid Pink, a local Detroit pyschedelic hard-blues band that often shared local stages with such acts as the MC5 and the Amboy Dukes but who are perhaps best known for their heavy cover of "House Of The Rising Sun," which was a Top 10 national hit in 1970. Our condolences to his family.
We didn't see local indie band Blase Splee handing out massive quantities of a new CD at this year's Blowout as they did last year, but you can download their new double single -- "Leave The Light On"/"Do You Even Care?" by clicking here. The band will be playing a show at Small's next Saturday, March 20th. And speaking of Blowout bands, one of the bigger buzzed-about bands at this year's fest, Secret Twins, have joined Quack! Media's roster. Congrats! Check out a video of the band in action by clicking here.
The White Stripes' long-awaited documentary, Under Great Northern Lights -- which follows the duo's 2007 Canadian tour -- finally hits DVD next Tuesday, March 16h. The film has also been screening at select AMC theaters this past week...but no Detroit -- what's up with that? The band did offer a kit fans could buy through March 10th to host their own White Stripes screening...and there is a "Secret White Stripes Day Sneak Peek" of the movie here in Detroit on the day of the DVD release. One needs to RSVP by clicking here to attend so give it a shot. A list of all the national screenings can be found by clicking here. The flick will also be available as a limited edition box set that includes a DVD, a live DVD of the band's 10th anniversary show, a live double CD, a hardcover book and a silk-screened print. Man, that's a lot of Stripes!
Speaking of Jack White, he recently produced an upcoming album for his British-born supermodel wife Karen Elson. The disc, The Ghost Who Walks, is due this summer on his own Third Man label. It's rumored that Jackson Smith also plays on the disc. A video of one track has already surfaced (see below) -- a sort of Harry Smith-ish murder ballad...because when we think of folk murder ballads, we always immediately think of supermodels. To be fair, this isn't Elson's first musical venture. She reportedly recorded some unreleased music in the past with then-boyfriend James Iha of the Smashing Pumpkins...and also was part of the cabaret collective Citizens Band and recorded a Serge Gainsbourg cover with Cat Power.
Finally, the Runaways don't have a whole lot of connection to Detroit, specifically, but their Svengali Kim Fowley sure does...so we'll use that bit of trivia to justify the "official" video below of Dakota Fanning covering "Cherry Bomb" in the upcoming bio flick. If you look carefully, you'll find snippets of the actor playing the young Mr. Fowley. The film opens in Detroit next month. It will undoubtedly be bigger than the actual Runaways ever were in their own time.