Friday, August 7, 2015

The Longboards and the TomorrowMen at The Pike in Long Beach 8-6-15

I was able to join the fun at the Surf Guitar 101 convention and some of the ensuing shows this year. My sweet wife bought me 1st class air and accommodations for my birthday. I hadn't been to LA in years, I forgot what these top-heavy things were.

I had to get one thing out of my system, I needed a Original Tommy's Double Chili Cheeseburger. When I was a mere punk I worked from 2am till 10am at Hostess making chocolate cupcakes. On my way home I always stopped at Tommy's and had a burger. At this time in the morning many added an egg, didn't do much of that.

An auspicious start to a great evening. I headed to Long Beach and to The Pike Bar and Grill, a venerable venue that has been at the corner of 4th and Hermosa for many years. This tiny place has served up many a great local musician and food.

Tonight was the 6th show associated with the convention. Jeff 'Big Tiki Dude' Hanson is the ring leader and promoter of said event. I admire him a lot as I would love to get traction on this kind of event in the Pacific Northwest. He has great talent and hutzpa to arrange all this. He was directing events down to the timing and volume of last night's event. Here Jeff is digging the music.

The TomorrowMen were first up. I saw Danny at the door and we greeted with a hug.  They are releasing their second CD this summer and I was lucky enough to be a part of it. I added some art to the postcard feature of their very anticipated release.

The concept is Futourism and us artists were asked to submit our interpretation of the idea. My concept was to travel to the last scene in the movie Planet of the Apes and get a little R&R. I staged a set and produced a high quality image.

This is my concept; My wife and I returned with several other tourists to the last scene of The Planet of the Apes.

You can buy the download here:

But if you want the art, you must purchase the CD. Buy it here:

The T-Men took the stage to very little fanfare, dressed in street clothes they wasted no time in getting to the good stuff.

They played some new and old tunes. They now have 2 CD's and played all my favorites from both. They even played a cover of Frankie and the Pool Boys. They were spot on, this is a band that has spent some time together. Super tight; they cruised through some technically difficult tunes. Their new stuff is great.

Danny Snyder and Ferenc Dobronyi are in said Pool Boys together, as well as several other bands. They played some great duos, matching guitars for supremacy. Danny is boss man here, Ferenc is head Pool Boy.

Treyf Bacon III is on bass and Laika Bald is hiding in the back playing killer percussion in his bare feet. They are of course from the future and these are only noms de plume. Their real names are: Mycroft Eloi, Skyles Angstrom, Grommet X and Lazarus Longfellow.

I looked around and saw some surf royalty; Ivan Pongracic of the stellar surf band The Madiera was in back rocking away.

The Pike is a small place and that meant we got to sit right on the band. They were basically set-up right outside the kitchen. You want fries with that Fender?

I don't know who has more fun, Ferenc or Danny. Ferenc wears a smile the whole time. He swings his legs back and forth, stands on one for continued lengths of time and has that damned smile always. Danny is obviously having fun. He beams a smile from his cherubic face, melts the audience and kills his guitar. You couldn't help but feel happy right along with them.

I get to see them 3 more times before the end of this trip. I will write more on them.

Now it was time for The Longboards, a killer trio from Spain. They were rocking to the T-Men earlier and I knew they came ready to play.

The Longboards are: JORDI PORRAS (Bass) ALFREDO ROMERO (Guitar) Ander Bada, (drums). Sorry for the caps, I just copied from their Facebook page here:

They play on vintage equipment that goes right along with their high-energy sound. They play mostly originals with some great covers in between. The sound takes you back to the traditional surf (on steroids) with a big helping of Dragsters. The killed a 3 song set of Link Wray classics; n got my loins quivering.

They had a smashing stage presence and with heavy accents they had us all laughing our asses off. Between Jordi and Ivan, they kept us in stitches with their commentary.

Pulp Fiction was on the TV and they dedicated a song to Vincent as he and Jules emptied their guns into the hapless victim.

This was stellar surf delivered with humor and great theater. Besides the hilarious comments between each song, they had a marvelous schtick. They had synchronized movements; crossing guitars, mirroring dips and swings, and playing off each other including the drummer in back.

These 3 gents generated a small cyclone just off the kitchen. The energy was infectious, a total blast. Alfredo had hands that were blazing fast and he liked to show off.

Nobody had more fun than The Longboards. The small but appreciative crowd was hollering and dancing right along with them.

This is another band I get to see a couple more times while I am here. I look forward to seeing them and The T-Men again...oh, tonight.

Another event in association with the Surf Guitar 101 convention is the show at The Purple Orchid in El Segundo tonight 8-7-15. The Longboards, The TomorrowMen, Moonbase and The Insect Surfers (be still my beating heart) all on the same stage. Should be fun. Stay tuned.

Here is a link to the convention. Thanks to Jeff and all the bands for this fun.

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