• Barretone's closed its doors following a show on April 5. Manager Mack Thompson was unable to keep the business open until 4 a.m. while continuing to hold down a day job. Brent Atnip, who was a co-conspirator with Thompson in the creation of Barretone's, was unable to take his place due to health problems.
• Word has it that one Steve Davis is rehabbing the old Uncle Pleasant's on Preston and will reopen it under that name. We keep our fingers crossed.
• We take sad note of the passing of Charles Flaherty, 89, on April 12. He was one of the co-owners of Flaherty's III, which was for many years the nightclub of choice for the over-40 (or so) set in the DuPont Road area. The club was run for some time by one of brothers, Garland Flaherty, who died in the early Nineties.
• Distillery Sound's Gary Meeks and Jonathon Hay are trying to find a few good acts to promote. Meeks is the father and manager of Travis Meeks of Days of the New fame and also a longtime Louisville performer. Hay has been in the record business for some while, most recently in Houston, and has worked with a string of producers and artists too long for me to reprint her. They've been running an Indie label that handles Travis' records and now they're looking to expand their roster and turn their expertise to the development of some Louisville musicians. Given that every single musician that I have ever talked to in Louisville has commented that he/she is "looking for management," Meeks and Hay should get lots of inquiries. Whether those inquiries turn into deals depends on the artists and the management team. Hay notes that no artistic slackers need apply; only hard-working, focused artists with a goal in mind will get past the first hoop.
• Publicist Leslie Stewart reports that the benefit for Ian Towles at Headliners on April 20 was a success, with over $6750 raised from concert admissions and auction items. All money went to the Ian Towles Trust, to benefit Rick Towles' four-year-old son, "who was in attendance and got all dressed up in his favorite t-shirt and cowboy boots for his "girlfriend," Patty Griffin!" Artemesia Gallery Cafe (where Rick was a managing partner) donated 10% of the Easter Brunch proceeds to the fund as well. There's an address for the trust for those who might be interested in making a contribution but couldn't make it to the concert: Ian Towles Trust, C/O Melanie Knowles, KUTMA, P.O. Box 4474, Louisville KY. 40204.
• Swiping from Leslie Stewart's newsletter, Reverb, which is available at www.lesliestewart.com, we learn that Nickie 7 is the first project to emerge from Lou Popadou Music, Nick Stevens' artist development agency at Downtown Recording. Nick is currently shopping the 22-year old Louisville native, who writes most of her own material. Also signed to Lou Popadou are Peace in the Jones, Slackshop, and Dead City Rejects. Call Nick for more information at (502) 583-9966. Nick's been trying to get the attention of Louisville musicians for some time now.
• Leslie swipes from other places, just showing the fundamental incestuousness of the music business. Her tidbit on the upcoming WFPK NON-COMM convention gets most info from www.triplearadio.com. It's a living. Anyway, here's the scoop: WFPK is hosting the third annual Non-Commvention the week after Derby, May 8 - 10 and expects to attract hundreds of A-3 radio programmers and label insiders. Performers scheduled to perform include: Patty Larkin, Bruce Cockburn, Gomez, Edwin McCain, Maia Sharp, Daniel Lanois, John Hiatt, Johnny Marr, My Morning Jacket, Liz Phair, the North Mississippi All-Stars, Ricky Skaggs, Amy Rigby, Buddy Miller and Joan Osborne. Public performances include a taping of the syndicated "E-Town" program at the Palace Theatre on Friday May 9th, and a multi-artist showcase at Headliners the following night.
• Tim Roberts, former Jazzin' columnist for LMN, has decided to put his skills with various computer video/graphic/web applications to work for Louisville musicians. He can do various interactive presentation materials incorporating video clips, a band bio, animations and more as part of a press kits for inclusion with any new CDs. His rate for musicians is negotiable, but firm and payable, so ask not what he can do for you for free, as the answer is "nothing," as is proper. They don't call it the music "business" for nothing. You can reach the now-beardless Tim at email@example.com.
• The ubiquitous Mr. Wonderful, a.k.a. Ron Lewis, is once more looking for info from musicians for things being planned by his organization L.A.M.P. (Louisville Association of Music Performers). This time, he asserts that the local NAACP is involved, but I have not confirmed that. If you are interested, send your promo material to: Ron Lewis, 1730 Kennedy Road, Louisville, KY 40216-5110 or an email your interest to firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Clear Channel Communications announced on April 10 that they would no longer work with independent record promoters, following questions from important members of Congress. Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Russ Feingold (D-WI) raised questions about "play-for-pay," previously known as "payola," which has frequently been alleged about the long-standing industry practice of using independent promoters. In January, Clear Channel executives testified before Congress that their playlists were "driven solely by listener tastes and desires, largely determined through extensive local audience research performed by its stations." Yeah and the Pope's not a Catholic.
• From David LaDuke's current Hard Rock Report, available at www.BallBusterHardMusicnews.net, we read this little amusing tidbit: [Headline] `Ray Rizzo (Days of The New) Returns Title To Rightful Owner, David LaDuke-
"Facing new personal, local and global values for 2003, I've decided not to continue my column for Leo. I'm returning the title of Rock Hard Rocker to its rightful owner, Louisville's Original Ball Buster, DAVID LA DUKE, who in two years never complained about me borrowing his title. Thank you, Ball Buster" - Ray Rizzo.
• Musicians' Tidbits:
The Nemo Music Showcase And Conference will be held September 4-7, in Boston, MA. Nemo 2003 is now accepting showcase applications, which must be postmarked by May 15. For a showcase application and more info, go to www.nemoboston.com or email email@example.com.
The International Songwriting Competition is accepting entries, offering $100,000 in cash and prizes in 13 categories, with 68 winners. All musicians, bands, and solo artists are eligible. Contact International Songwriting Competition, Zero Governors Avenue #6. Medford, MA, USA 02155 or call 781.306.0441 or log onto http://www.songwritingcompetition.com/.
• Terry W. Borne, 56, died in Louisville on April 4, following a long illness. Borne was an organist and a partner in Webber & Borne Pipe Organ Builders. He was currently serving as organist for the Wall Street United Methodist Church in Jeffersonville, IN and the owner of the Automated Music Specialist, a business that re-cut rolls for player pianos and nickelodeons.
• Jo Ann Hale Combs, 69, died in Louisville on April 16. She was a singer who performed on the earliest of Louisville television programs and sang regularly on the Crusade For Children. Her first show was on the radio version of "Hi Varieties," a teen talent show. She sang with the Ralph Marterie and Gene Krupa big bands but did not like touring. She worked on WHAS radio as the "girl singer," and appeared on "Hayloft Hoedown" with the late Randy Atcher and "Cactus" Tom Brooks.
• Freda Smiley Gatlin, 89, died in Louisville on March 27. She was a self-employed musician who performed for conventions and conferences and played for several churches.