Last weekend found me romping about town in a five-minute bed sheet-reconstruction Halloween costume. No, I wasn’t a ghost, but I kind of wished I had been after explanation No. 72. Who knew Pat Benatar’s Get Nervous wasn’t as much of a classic album for everyone else as it was for me? Although my “shocked” hairstyle posed a minimal complication as I tried to fit inside the squishy, crowded confines of the Haunted Tube at Holbrook Café, it managed to keep its frayed stature even after soaking in the sticky, womblike moistness of the tube. Apparently, a few patrons decided to take their gin ’n’ tonics inside with them. And according to official sources, a few other personal items were left behind inside as well. If you’re missing a pair of glasses, a blue scarf, blue toothbrush or a green Chuck Taylor shoe, size 10 1/2, e-mail the nice people of Time Stereo at email@example.com and maybe you’ll get your stuff back. Back on the outside, the Piranhas rocked like a punk gore-core hurricane and it was off to Free Funk night at detroit contemporary and dreams of bloody cats in an underpass.
NOT AS SCARY
Ten minutes later, I woke up and headed out to the State Fairgrounds along with hundreds of Kid Rock devotees set on getting a shot at MTV fame. The Pimp of the Nation himself was shooting a video for “Forever,” a song off his new album, Cocky, which comes out Nov. 20. I hung out on the grounds for about five hours or so with a bunch of fans, crew and the Outlaws (bikers hired as bodyguards) looking for portable sources of heat and feeling sorry for dancers dressed in pieces of red, white and blue string. Thankfully, they had blankets to wrap themselves in between takes. Finally, the Bullgod and his Twisted Brown Trucker band stepped out of their trailers and onto the stage and, even in the brisk October chill, managed to put on a pretty good show. A massive American flag provided the backdrop for the stage; firefighters were on hand and lots of red, white and blue waved in the wind, if you want a hint of what’s in store for the video. My ears were a little numb but, if I remember correctly, I believe he rhymed hip hop, punk rock and Kid Rock a few times in the song, and the rest of it was pretty customary funky old-time rock ’n’ roll with some nice organ parts.
FUNKY OLD-TIME ROCK ’N’ ROLL
The Howling Diablos have been hanging in some pretty impressive company these days. The longtime Detroit favorites have contributed a version of “Drinkin’ Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee” to a tribute album, called Good Rockin’ Tonight, The Legacy of Sun Records at the request of the album’s producer, Ahmet Ertegun. Other artists on the album include Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, Bryan Ferry, Elton John, Jeff Beck and Chrissie Hynde. The song, originally recorded by Sticks McGhee and popularized by Jerry Lee Lewis, features the signature raps of Kid Rock in the Diablos’ version. Tino from the Diablos explains Spo-Dee-O-Dee to be an old term, “a blues thing when all the winos would take the last of what’s left in the bottles and pour it all together to create a big mash. They would share it — a big slop bucket full of alcohol.” Vic Doucette, Metro Times copy editor and former radio DJ, says he remembers Spo-Dee-O-Dee as a code word for an expletive the original performers couldn’t get away with in the studio. The tribute album came out Oct. 30. The Diablos also will be featured in a two-hour PBS special in conjunction with the release that will air at 9 p.m., Nov. 28. And they’re having a CD-release party for the album on Nov. 24 at the Royal Oak Theatre.
Eminem isn’t the only local hip-hopper shooting a film in Detroit. DJ Butter may not have a fancy director such as Curtis Hanson on his side, but he still plans on releasing Shitsville — a two-hour documentary highlighting Detroit talent with concert footage, interviews and studio sessions with his partner, Furious. But before that, Butter recently put out his latest mix-compilation album, Shithappens, which features KonArtist, Obie Trice and other regional rappers.
In other good news for Detroit hip hop, True Skool is back, and happening at Alvin’s on the first Friday of every month. This Friday features performances from SUN, Uncle Ill, Dice, Da Omen, 5150, Astray and Dead Poets. Doors open at 9 p.m. for those 18 and older.E-mail In One Ear at firstname.lastname@example.org