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May 12, 2008

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Tim Wisniewski

Hey,

My wife and I run a label in Baltimore called Spleencoffin. You folks played a recent 7" that we put out by Rosemary Krust a few times, so I was hoping you would have mentioned them here. They are one of Baltimore's best and most underrated bands. Also, we make our releases available free online via creative commons-licensed mp3s on our archive site. So please feel free to use any of our stuff there for your free music archive.

best,

Tim

Jason

Tim -- Thanks for commenting! I wish I had known about Spleencoffin beforehand, I'm browsing your digital archives right now to make up for lost time. I'll get in touch about the FMA, good thing we've got comments...-Jason

Hell's Donut House

"The Streets of Baltimore" pretty much always defined it for me:

Well I sold the farm to take my woman
Where she used to be
We left our kin and all our friends
Back there in Tennessee
And I bought those one way tickets
She had often begged me for
And they took us to the streets of Baltimore

Well her heart was filled with gladness
When she saw those city lights
She said the prettiest place on earth was
Baltimore at night
Well a man feels proud to give his woman
What she's longing for
And I kinda liked the streets of Baltimore

Then I got myself a factory job
I ran an old machine
And I bought a little cottage
In a neighborhood serene
And every night when I'd come home
With every muscle sore
She'd drag me through the streets of Baltimore

Well I did my best to bring her back
To what she used to be
Then I soon learned she loved those bright lights
More than she loved me
Now I'm a going back on that same train
That brought me here before
While my baby walks the streets of Baltimore
While my baby walks the streets of Baltimore

Woody

wow, nice post! you really hit a ton of great stuff here (or over there in b-more). I've been wondering with the price of real estate there (a house costs the same as a few cases of Nattie-Boh) and its historic quirkiness, if B-More is the current capital of east coast music.... not to mention the east coast capital of 24 hour korean restaurants!

There's also a lot of cross-over between these folks and the more improv scene (and some of the other folks living in the H&H building).

I'm thinking cellist Audrey Chen, homemade instrument guy Neil Feather, everyone at the High Zero fest at the Red Room, saxophonist John Berndt, steel guitarist (and recent transplant) Susan Alcorn, and many more... also, banjo freaker/Lungfish vocalist Dan Higgs...

JGW

videohippos videohippos videohippos videohippos

Sarah

You mentioned DJ Technics, and Rod Lee, but you forgot the two biggest names in Baltimore Club music now:

DJ Excel and his label Bmore Original Records, who is blowing up because of both his Bmore Club (Pop That Kitty, Bakin Soda) and his hip hop producing. (bmoreoriginal.com)

AND

DJ Scottie B from Unruly Records, who is the godfather of the scene, and actually put DJ Excel's first vinyl out in 1995. (unrulyonline.com)

Other than that, good job looking out on the Baltimore scene!

Oh, and Abby Mott is making delicious music these days, too!

Katey

What about The Celebration? Pretty great stuff...

Katey

oh, and Human Bell!

Bateman

How about some Dirty Marmaduke Flute Squad? They already have a ton of free shows on archive.org, so they're sure to be up for it. Plus, they were on FOX's "Next Great American Band", so you know they're good ;)

Stacey

Also, DLake

http://www.myspace.com/thedlake

Dan

Junestar is awesome. Please add them to your list now.
http://www.junestar.com/

Neil Freebairn

Attention all bands, performers, bartenders, soundboard engineers, Djs, and patrons of Lo-Fi Social Club. I implore all of you to boycott Lo-Fi Social Club. I have kept quiet about this for far too long and feel that it is important for all to know the story of my involvement with the club.

I am the former booking agent and curator at Lo-Fi Social Club. After pouring my heart and soul into that club (even scrubbing the floors on my hands and knees with gasoline to get the putty off from the floor after it was installed, for no money whatsoever), I have been completely let down for the last time by Neil Freebairn, the proprietor of the club. I was put in charge of booking at some point in December. I did the best job I could with what little resources that were available to me. Neil told me he didn’t want to bother with the booking anymore and this would be an easy way for me to make some money while the record store was being built (I was to be manager as I will explain shortly). I was the only person doing any booking at that club save a show or two that Neil promoted heavily because his former band was playing, booking around 100 bands and I was working for peanuts, and these are peanuts that were never paid to me.

Prior to my working at Lo-Fi Social Club full time, and after having organized the most successful night at the club when the club was at the former location in Brooklyn, The Pain of Being Dead art show, he promised me a position as curator at the new location at 1825 N.Charles. He never paid to ship back artwork to artists that were in this show and I still have several art pieces from that show that rightfully belong in the hands of the artists that spent their money and time to send the artwork to the club for the show. He told me he would pay for this and never did. This show was on April 13th of 2007. In addition to his promise to give me the position of curator, he promised me a position as record store manager when the new location opened. Regretfully, I gave my 2 weeks notice at my then current job. Needless to say, the record store never opened, though he continually promised me that it would over many months. He offered me 24k a year plus health benefits to manage the record store and curate the art shows there. This never happened. He promised for months that he would stock the store and that he was dealing with Morphius to stock the store. I spent countless hours writing up an inventory for which I was never paid. I also began construction of the record store in my backyard with a fellow Lo-Fi staff member because Neil said that if we wanted it to happen, we needed to show initiative. Well, we showed the initiative and spent the majority of my time trying to make that aspect happen and I wound up in the poorhouse for it.

Opening night was a disaster as you may all well know. I had stressed to Neil the need to count heads at the door as I knew the club would be packed that night and we would have eyes on us. He decided that “it wasn’t important” and decided to stop counting heads. It actually was very important, as several bands including Durden, Squaaks (and I believe this was supposed to be their cd release party), and Thrushes did not get to play as the police rightfully shut down the show considering it was a fire trap with that many bodies inside and outside of the club. Neil saw this disastrous night as a minor setback, but this left a sour taste in many peoples mouths, including mine, and rightfully so. This was an omen of worse things to come.

After a stream of unsuccessful shows Neil booked, he offered me the opportunity to do all the booking for the club, offering me $x amount for each show I booked. I spent months booking every single show at the club and spent a tremendous amount of time talking to bands and setting up 90% of the bills from January through March. In addition to this, I was managing both the myspace calendar and calendar on the official website very diligently, also taking and uploading 90% of the photos and creating content like interviews on the website. I was also videotaping and making and uploading almost all of the videos that are located on the website. I was working extremely hard for Lo-Fi to get off the ground.

To make a long story short, Neil Freebairn, after giving him more than adequate time to pay me (he was supposed to start paying me in January, and this left me heartbroken and destitute over the next several months causing me great mental and financial turmoil.) has still not payed me for my booking at his club. Expecting that he would make good on his obligation to pay me, many times over months, he has run me around in circles promising payment. All the public apologies you have seen Neil make, were because I told him it was in his best interest to do so. He seemed to not really care when he left five bands standing outside a locked club for a show that had been booked at least two months in advance, while he decided to go skiing instead of running his club. He chalked this up to a miscommunication even though the show was on the calendar. Peter Goode

PS: He also might be fleeing to canada or trying to find work as a web designer or programmer, all will lead to terrible dissapointments and losses from employeers, BEWARE

Lesner Brydge

Impossible Hair(oranges band/lee harvey keitel band/buttsteak) is a tight charm city outfit too. you should give them a listen.

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