Let me tell you all about this little tradition we have. It’s called Thirsty Thursday. Every Thursday night, me and my friends get together at this bar down the street and hang out and listen to live music and drink. Imagine if heaven had a bar, and every time you walked in it was like the opening scene of Cheers, yeah, that’s what Judd’s is for me.
Technically, it’s no longer called Judd’s. Mrs. Judd decide that if Mr. Judd didn’t sell his bar and permanently move to their second home on the beach that she was leaving him. Now it’s the Garden Gate Cafe. It’s exactly the same, except they put a fence around the patio so it’s a pain in the ass to get inside or move around because everyone is squished together. And they replaced the comfy chairs they had with cast iron monstrosities to match the garden decor. And they hung up some plants and shit. But it’s the same employees that have always been working at the exact same bar.
I started coming there when i was eighteen because my friend Kenny would always go there and play shows. You see, he liked that bar because it’s an old people bar. There’s not very many folks my age who patron the establishment. Just our group. So it’s not too loud, (except when we show up) it’s not too crowded, you don’t have to wait long for beer or a turn at the bathroom. And you for sure don’t have to sideways walk through shoulder to shoulder crowds looking for someone in strobe lights under deafening techno while you’re drunk. That’s nice.
But Kenny knew this guy Joe who was a cook there. And he knew Mr. Judd, because he was there all the time. So Kenny started playing punk rock shows every month or so. And they started getting more organized and attracting larger crowds and more bands. Eventually we built this gigantic modular stage that got set up in the parking lot, and hundreds of people would show up for these big parties. Mr. Judd expanded his bar into his storage area, almost doubling it’s size. He added pool tables and extra booths and even an indoor stage for the bands to play at. (he was baking serious loot off of these shows)
So I was there a lot, underage. I would sneak in a pint of whiskey in each pocket and get sloshed and mosh around like a crazy drunken teenager. I loved it. I have a lot of memories there. Well eventually Kenny’s band broke up, and the music scene moved somewhere else, and Mr. Judd sold the joint. The new owners wanted to clean it up and make it more of a family friendly restaurant deal. So the months and years passed and eventually the stars aligned and the winds blew a charged up air on out to Kenny’s house. Once that scent of destiny reached his nostrils, he knew it was time to go back.
So he started inviting people out to the bar on Thursday. Thursday was late enough in the week that people were ready to do something, but before the weekend when everyone had different plans. And pretty soon a good sized group of people started coming around again. Nothing like before, but fun none the less.
Well, the new owner recognized that business was up on Thursdays, and she decide to pay Joe the cook, and our old friend Lennon (named after the Beatle cause his parents were hippies, excuse me, are hippies) to come at night and play live music.Lennon on the bongos and backup vocals, Joe on the acoustic guitar and lead vocal. And Joe is a phenomenal musician. He’s fucking crazy. He had this band named Indonation and he toured around actually making a living playing music for a long time. They don’t exist anymore. He’s got a new band now. They have a totally different sound when he’s doing his acoustic set live, but just check out the song Star Stretcher. It’s all about butt sex, and it’s pretty kick ass.
Anywho, so we go up there and booze it up, eat some wickedly delicious food, and groove to the music. They’ve built up a pretty extensive list of covers to choose from. Everything from the Ballad of Curtis Lowe to Possum Kingdom to Epic. And it’s technically open mike night, so sometimes we get surprise performances by other people. Some are good, some suck balls, but they are all fun. Some old man stopped by the other day and did a solo set of acoustic blues and old school country. He was sick nasty awesome. He was in a band too, the Fifty/50 Band. (I’m guessing the average age of the band members) They’re pretty good, a wide range of covers and whatnot. But this guy playing and singing alone was in-fucking-credible. I may or may not have gotten a boner listening to him pick out the melodies. And he had this sweet Taylor that sounded like Satan himself had crafted it out of the bones of angels. It was such a nice damn guitar. Every guy in the bar was drooling like the Miller Lite girls from the week before had walked in wearing wet wife beaters with no bra.
I had a picture to put up but Myspace is being gay and won’t let me access it. Bad Myspace, BAD! Don’t make me roll up the home page of CNN.com and smack you in the e-nose with it. Good for nothing site. So that’s what I’m off to go do now. I hope all of you have a great Thurday night as well. Except my friends in new Zealand, y’all have a nice Friday morning you future living weirdos. Peace and chicken grease world, see you tomorrow.