Beat To Death
Dave Wakeling plays the Long Bar again... are you ready this time?
Thursday, April 27, 2000
On a typical week around here you end up seeing many of the same musicians playing at the same bars on the same day. Someone last week said that the Monterey music scene is "an egg about to hatch." But it really seems to be an egg that gets beaten over and over again... and always stays the same.
So when new musical things happen in town, it becomes all that much more important to check it out. With no audiences, nothing new comes to town and we have a dry dull place where no one wants to play or see a show--''nuff said, let''s get down to business.
Let''s start with the Long Bar, which seems to entice Dave Wakeling to play there over and over again. Wakeling founded the English Beat, General Public, and a whole mess of highly successful pop-ska bands. This ''80s musical hero is playing Monterey again, causing some people to question why he has played so many shows here after opening for artists like The Police, INXS, and Bruce Springsteen.
In any case, Dave Wakeling takes top billing this week. In case you didn''t know, trivia fans, Wakeling originally founded a band called The Beat in England but, due to copyright ownership of the name here in the U.S., it was changed to "The English Beat." In Australia they played as "The Australian Beat," or "The British Beat." When they played with the Specials it was "Special Beat." (Here in Monterey, considering how frequently Wakeling seems to roll into town, perhaps the name ''Beat to Death'' is fitting.)
All bitching aside, Wakeling will probably play some of the best ska you''ll ever hear in your life. He''s fun, he''s good, and he''s been doing this ''music thing'' for awhile. Backing him tonight is a tight professional brass section made up of members from The English Beat and General Public. Whatever you feel about his return, Dave Wakeling will romp your life into an orgasm this week. Opening for them is pop band Foamscape led by Mac Tally. With Foamscape you should find enjoyment in just hearing them rifle through pop cover tunes and originals built on the basic elements that lead you to want a drink. And that''s OK. Drinking is always encouraged in the Long Bar.
Dave Wakeling and Foamscape, tonight, 9pm. The Long Bar, 372-2244, $10 cover.
If you want to relax a bit, head to the Blue Fin tonight for "Reggae Night" with Habesha. And the weekend looks promising, beginning with Friday, when you can see the Chop Tops, a rockabilly band that fits smoothly with the Fin. It isn''t that the Chop Tops are a perfect rockabilly band. But they enhance the "swinger" ambience of the whole affair... the affair of playing pool and making time on the open balcony with a cigarette or a martini in your hand.
Saturday, Unshakable Race, with Rob and Danyel London, was on the list for the Fin. They''re a popular, funky group that deserves recognition but they''ve had to cancel several shows lately due to a bad case of "drummer absence." Instead, the Ultraviolets will fill in for the apparently shakable Unshakable Race with some smooth rock of their own. The Ultraviolets are a perfect replacement and should provide the Fin with rock ''n'' roll that is at least energizing given the short notice.
Reggae and the Ultraviolets, 9pm both shows, Friday and Saturday, Blue Fin Cafe and Billiards, 375-7000.
If you want something a whole lot mellower, something that will go well with your white wine, check out fingerstyle guitarist Laurence Juber. His pedigree includes a three-year stint with Wings, Paul McCartney''s band in the late ''70s and early ''80s. He''s played on about 10 motion picture soundtracks in the intervening years (including Pocahontas, The Big Chill, and Good Will Hunting). In his free time, he''s composed music for TV, stage and screen, too.
Juber coaxes a big, rich, jazz/world sound out of his guitar that''s very nice for listening. And that''s what this show is all about: It''s a sit-down, fold-your-hands, and mind-your-manners type of gig. It might be good for a third or fourth date, or if you''re trying to impress someone with your higher sensibilities.
Laurence Juber, Friday, 8pm. Carleton Hall, $15. 373-7379.