Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Well, it's official.

Steven Page has left Barenaked Ladies through what was termed on the band's website as "mutual agreement". I completely understand wanting to hoe your own row (especially after 20 years on the job -- even if the job is "rock star"), but it still makes me a little sad.

I first saw BNL back in the early 90s, in a smallish venue called the American Theater in St. Louis. The crowd was maybe 1,500 and a band called The Bogmen opened for them. I really didn't have too much idea what to expect, have only recently found the band and driving the patrons at a local bar crazy by playing "Be My Yoko Ono" every night I DJ'ed.

When the Ladies hit the stage, though -- wow, how do you describe the band to someone who has never seen them? Great musicianship, great stories, great dancing (ha!) ... great fun! It was like a variety show done almost completely ad-libbed, and there was nary a dull moment.

I had never spent a night more drawn in by any entertainment. I laughed, I sang, I even danced a little. When the show ended and we were filing out, people in the crowd were talking about when they could see the band again.

Like them, I was hooked, and since then I have seen the band five more times and bought multiple copies of every album. Hell, I used to pick up extra copies of the CDs at used record stores and just give them to friends to try and get them involved.

I'll still go see BNL whenever they're nearby, and the same goes for Steven and his projects. I'm not going to take a side as a fan, in other words -- there's enough admiration and respect on my end to go around for everyone.

Good luck both to Steven and to the Ladies. The future may be uncertain, but judging by the past, it'll still rock.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

The staff at The Hoser's weekly NFL Picks has been busy getting ready for the new baby. Surprisingly, I predicted this child would be a girl ... and I was correct!

Steelers 27, Cardinals 17 ... and God, do I hope I'm wrong.

Go Cards!