Bipolaroid and King Louie

The Buccaneer(Memphis)

January 21, 2006


It was a normal night like any other as I sat back on my laptop checking my mail and playing music, when a new e-mail came afoot. Bipolaroid leader Ben Glover liked my photography work so much from the last gig they did he asked if I would come along to Memphis with the gang to do some more work for them. I said absolutely. I had never been to Memphis, and I like Bipolaroid a lot.

And so it began. The mini "Almost Famous" experience.

After three hours of reserved chaos we got on the road. Me, Ben, and Brian Rueb, the very experienced and talented guitar player for Bipolaroid. It was five hours fully fitted with speeding tickets, flashbacks, and psychedelic rock...lots and lots and lots of psychedelic rock. On the way Ben talked about how he was told that Bipolaroid would be playing at one of the premiere best venues in Memphis. We were all very excited. Even more so excited when came upon the venue, which looked like a run-down Waffle House taken over by stick-figured pirates. Brian was unamused, Ben was excited, and bassist DC Harbold was extremely buoyant! The band set up, but we still needed some more extra things, so we went to Walgreen's. When we arrived there Ben and I discussed how this was the first time Bipolaroid has ever been out of New Orleans to do a show. Just when I started to get homesick talking about our hometown, an old man on crutches begging for money chased us down two blocks, and that made it feel like old New Orleans.

When we got back to The Buccaneer we were surprised to see the turn out increase dramatically. All the rumors we were told about this venue were true. It was as if I'd entered the paranormal Bizarro just-as-awesome version of The Circle bar--only with pirates. The bar was filled to the brim with people by 10:30pm. Nearly four months without any practice together, and everything is performed great. Of course I was one of the few singing along. There were a lot of people that enjoyed the show very much and purchased some merchandise. Glover's anti-enunciated but entirely pleasing voice filled the room during their set, making the room mellow, welcome and winning. And of course Bipolaroid had incredible rock-out moments, as well. There was a smash session at the end of their set, where Ben ended up chipping the side of his Vox guitar.

The scene that night primarily was there to see King Louie. He's become quite a big deal in Memphis. When I finally got to see him play I could definitely understand why. Once kicked out of a band for being too old and too fat by a bunch of youngster pretty boys, King Louie is certainly showing his old band up and gaining new popularity. Bipolaroid ended up getting to do a 30 minute set which was very cool. King Louie, headlining the show, busted out with a 2 hour set. It was hard-to-move, incredibly rocking your brains out, off-the-wall music. There was horsepower and stamina! The crowd was insane, forcing the King to play for an extended amount of time, when he broke out some One Man Band material.

Continuing with the experience of being with the band, there was of course an after-party, followed by a free stay at a friends house. On the ride back to New Orleans, I got to preview some of the new songs the band is working on for their new album. So far everything sounds incredible. I can only see positive things in Bipolaroidís future. I had a great time going around with the band, and I'll take this experience as just another amazing trip.

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