by Jeff Milo
I'm tired of being tired with the hyperbole of pundits. I'm not here to sway you, with misued grandiloquence, that something that's about to happen is going to be life-changing for you. Every outlet, every blogger, wants your attention - can you fathom all the cartoonish histrionics that get spewed across various digi-walls where nothing seems to stick... So much white noise out there in InternetWorld.
But since my writings have always been housed by the regenerative shack of music ...I might as well succinctly stitch my way over towards the Rock Lottery that's coming up at the Magic Stick in Detroit. (Next Friday - 4.20.12)
Once you're done with this article, see, you won't be back to re-play it. Ain't any chorus here to stick in your head, no rhythm for the words to roll-to, no hook, no hook to bring you back... ...but a song stays. Get fed up with...the world et al. and you can find your sanctuary in the song. It washes over you with its inherent charms, that you know where it's going--into the b-section with that scorching solo or into swelling to a thickly layered harmony for the third chorus' crescendo - this song is always going to be here for you. That part at the end, where the guitars cut away and a fill on the snare tumbles excitedly into a chest-thumping kick on the bass drum, that's where you can feel yourself punching the wall...and getting it out.
But some songs will only happen once. That's a given, and often a cliché. Yes, but, some Bands will only happen once...
4th Annual Rock Lottery: a benefit for Greening of Detroit featuring 60 local musicians randomly matched into 15 bands
If I could say anything about the Rock Lottery, its redeeming quality that could win your consideration amidst the Great Scary Shuffle of cynicism and seen-it-all's, event-invitations and insincere likes-of-things-you-might-not-actually-like... -this time - I'd like you to consider the nature of Detroit's Rock Lottery - dozens of local musicians, ticket-holders, are dumped together into 3- and 4-member groups and tasked to come up with one original song and one cover song - learn 'em, get 'em right, and perform them together (in just under a week).
So it becomes a social experiment. How quickly can musicians gel? Can they even ever gel at all, really? What happens if you take a member from the 50's-rock-revivalists The Walking Beat and put them in a room those with more raucous sensibilities, like a noise-digging punk-preservationist from the Terrible Twos or a no-wave-reveling-ambient-thrum-churner from Marco Polio & the New Vaccines?
Participants -so far- include members of: Lightning Love / The Terrible Twos / The Frustrations / Secret Twins / The Detroit Cobras / The Walking Beat / Belle Ghoul / Mexican Knives / K.I.D.S. / Phantom Cats / Detroit 442 / The HandGrenades / Old Empire / Johnny Ill Band / ...and many more...
What will it sound like?
The best part is that I can't use sensationalist, carnival-barker-esque language to tease you out to it. I'm not into teasing you, swaying you... Just asking you to consider... I know there's a lot out there and I know that you take in a lot - sharing-links, video-clips, polls, deciding whether to click "join" or "maybe" for the next local event... a lot.
You can take this article for granted. Take it with a grain of salt. But I'm betting you don't take local music for granted - I'm betting some of these musicians participating, holding their tickets, have made some songs that you've played and re-played, heard --and then heard-again at various live shows.
This article only happened. These songs, at the Rock Lottery - will only happen once. And we have no idea what they're going to sound like...
...And if you think its just a big bunch of rock-types wankin' off - then consider that it's for a good cause! The Greening of Detroit who develop strategic landscapes (known as Green Infrastructure) and urban agriculture programs working towards benefiting a community’s social, economic and environmental health.
Ticket-holders (bands will be formed on Friday the 13th):
Scott Dunkerley - Frustrations
Andrew Pawelski - The HandGrenades
Kyle Akey - T-Tops
Whitney Hodge - Peach Pit
Erik Roosen - Jesse & the Gnome
Will Atkins -RZL DZL/ Heat Lightning
Justin Walker - Isles of ESP
Ryan Felton - Louder Than Bombs
Mike Hubbarth - Fancy Sauce
Carlos Ruiz - Replicas/ Weed Nap
Jeff Klein - Ko & the Knock Outs
Larry Wilson - Isles of ESP/ Tyvek
Arun Bali - Saves the Day
Dave Malosh - Electric Six/ Captains of the Head
Chris Campbell - Terrible Twos/ Johnny Ill Band
Zach Weedon - Mexican Knifes
Jeff Perry- Terrible Twos
Dina Bankole - Swimsuit / Secret Twin
Beren Ekine -
Pete Steffy - Johnny Ill Band
Todd McNulty - Sugarcoats
Ernie Guerra - Noman
Mike Trombley -The Sights
Julie Lucas - Mirror Twin
Mike Shalast - Replicas
Dale Wilson - The Octopus
Sandy Kramer - Thee Kaipirinas
Jesse Shepherd Bates - Jesse & The Gnome
Blake Hill - Instant Party
Ben Filler - Dread Wings/ Deaf Beasts
Shayne O'Keefe - Noman
Stevie Michael - Grand Nationals
Rob Wilson - Summer Pledge
Lacy Shelton - The Hillside Stranglers
Nick Chevillet - The HandGrenades
Sandy Hopkins - Velveteen Rabbit
Frank Woodman - Woodman
Michael Langan - Marco Pollio & the New Vaccines
Eric Allen - Twine Time/ Kommie Killpatrick
Nate Czarling - Bad Party
Andrew Beer - Noman
Deleano Acevedo - K.I.D.S.
Gabe Dodson - Old Empire
Steve McFever - Computer Perfection
Bill Kozy - Speedball
Phreddy Wischusen - Golden
Ben Collins - Lightning Love
Brittany Banenoch - BreeZee One
Jeff Arcel - Terrible Twos / Bill Bondsmen
Amado Guadarrama - Bill Bondsmen
Kevin Herron - Esquire
Chris Koltay - Shadimond La Freedom
Scott Stimac - K.I.D.S
Craig Brown - Terrible Twos/ Mahonies
Mary Cobra - Detroit Cobras
Max Daley - Phantom Cats