A year goes by fast and in the case of business, a year can exceed some venture’s lifetime; opening…closing…THE END. But on April 20th, Sluggo’s celebrated the one-year anniversary of its current location. The chapter now being written inside 101 S. Jefferson street should read as another positive addition to its history.
My memories of Sluggo’s originated with meeting friends and watching a ton of local and touring bands from the second floor of the Intendencia Street location. The reward for tackling a lifelong fear of heights and the steps to the balcony was the reward of an unobstructed view of every show I could catch.
With a short-distance move to Palafox Street came memories of the dark entrance that led to booths that seemed to reach the ceilings and swallow patrons in comfort and shadow. Fear juggling was entertained again by the narrow flight of stairs that led to a pool room and the area where the bands performed. Across the street from what used to be the J.J. Newberry’s where mom would occasionally take me on Saturday afternoons as a kid and a short walk away from Buccaneer Coin and Stamps where I used to buy baseball cards and crazy stamps, a new file of memories was created for my developing adolescence.
-The tuxedo my fianceé (at that time) ruined with her wayward cigarette during a Tuesday Martini Night.
-The night of a Mike West & Myshkin show where Mr. West taught everyone a lesson in “show etiquette” when a friend who I hadn’t seen in years and I held a reunion that got too loud with excitement that West cold-cut off his set mid-song from across the room and asked if we were done yet.
-The Digital Underground show where I produced the ticket that had been purchased immediately after they were made available, only to have the accompanying show go unseen by my eyes because I went to find my friends outside and was denied re-entry because the show was at full-capacity.
After an amazing run downtown, Sluggo’s was forced from the location and fell off the map for a few years. The creation of Terry Johnson and Nick Flynn would not be gone for long, when plans were announced for the venue to reopen on Garden Street with the inclusion of several unique ideas which included a vegetarian restaurant. The few shows I caught there ranged from a cool performance art exhibit to a show that included a friend’s band. Unfortunately, the venue disappeared again, leaving a huge hole that was difficult to fill.
Sluggo’s eventually found a new home on Cervantes street where the body of diverse shows shared life with a vegan menu. After several years and many shows at the location, Sluggo’s moved to its current home and played host to a one year anniversary show with Sports Bar (Kemper “Johnny K” Blair, Stuart “BERNIE” Holt, and Cliff “The Wizard” Boyd. Richmond, VA), Sexy Crimes (Cassady Fernandez and Joel Control. Brooklyn, NY) and local group Boneless Rats (Joe Boneless, Travis F*ck and Jesse “Jesstro” Vanderweert.)
……………………………………….Boneless Rats Interview………………………………………………………..
TCAS: In 2011, what’s in store for the Boneless Rats?
TF: Release a 7”
JB: We just put out a tape two weeks ago. It’s the “First Two Years: Demo Tape.” It’s available at “Wax On The Tracks” and soon at “Revolver Records” and directly through us at bonelessrats.blogspot.com
TCAS: What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
JV: Ever been given about anything?
JB: Oh man….
JV: “Keep it secret. Keep it safe.”
TF: I agree with Jesse.
JB: I agree with that too.
TF: That’s perfect.
TCAS: What is the best advice you could give some else?
JB: Do it yourself, no matter what.
TF: Yeah…I agree with that.
JB: Don’t worry about anyone else. Do your own thing.
JV: DIY Work ethic. Do what you gotta do for yourself.
TCAS: Anything you want to add before I add the last question? Life…Art?
JB: Have fun.
TF: Music’s awesome.
JB: Have fun.
JV: Have fun. Don’t take it too seriously. Don’t take it….fun…in between not taking it too seriously and….
JB: Serious enough.
JV:….not slacking off.
JB: Learn as much as you can about everything, but don’t take anything too seriously. Have fun.
TF: Keep it secret….keep it safe.
TCAS: Big serious question now. Real serious moment. Crunchy or creamy peanut butter?
JB: Crunchy. Extra Crunchy!
JB: Wait! No, you have to get the natural stuff. None of that hydrogenated sh*t. Straight crunchy.
JV: Straight Crunchy!
JB: Yeah! There you go.
TF: That’s what we like.
JB: You gotta throw in your ad for General Jesse’s…
JV: Also, I’m coming out with a new gin. General Jesse’s Gin. Our slogan is “It’s Generally Drinkable.” It comes in gallon, half-gallon and trash bag sizes. It’s coming out soon. General Jesse’s Gin.
TCAS: Any websites or links to buy your tapes, CDs, vinyl?
TF: I don’t talk much. I’m the drummer.
JB: We’re shy.
JV: We’re all shy.
TCAS: I’m socially awkward too. Thank you gentlemen.
-Michael L. Smith