Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Oldie but goodie department.

Just came across some photos from the Famous Monsters show back in Fall 99. What a fabulous night that was. It was at a tiny club in Philly, The Pontiac Grill, at 3rd and South St. which used to be the old J.C. Dobbs. The bar was always grungy and dirty. The result of layers of lingering history and the filth of a hundred years without a good cleaning. And from experience, you just knew which side to stand on, or choose a booth to sit at, because of the leaky bathroom upstairs. Water drips and plaster flakes that fell on your head every time someone flushed the toliet were commonplace. (Yep, it literally came through the ceiling onto the crowd.)

That night I remember it was freezing cold and had just snowed the day prior. The bad weather had killed the turnout a bit.I got there early and pretty much sat in the booth with the merch gal. Just until showtime when we headed up front to the stage and danced our asses off. She shot this pic for me just before the first song in the set. The entire time we chatted and danced I kept thinking, "damn, she looks familiar." It wasn't until after the set that I found out she was the hot red-headed cowboy go-go dancer from the Thunderkiss 65' video back in the day. She was still a friend of Sean's and just helping her out for the tour by running the merch sale.What a great set and fun night. Miss that little band and the club. Everyone's spirits were high and they were meeting Forest J. Ackerman the next day or so. Tiny crowd, tiny club, tiny little brown van on tour. Which my ex and some fans even helped Devildoll, Shezilla, and Vampire Girl load up at the gig's end.

While the Pontiac never quite lived up to the hype of the old J.C. Dobbs I had heard the Grille got a fancy-pants face lift in 2007 and the old facade had been blown out,booths removed, etc. A gastro-pub atmosphere that served pumpkin-tinis was said to be the new shtick there. Then I think the JC Dobbs title came back and a revival took place last Summer.Someone tried to return it to it's former grungy glory and then within a year it's closed down until further notice.As was announced this January on their myspace. This was once one of my favourite haunts and the best of the tinier seedy clubs to see national acts in Philly. (ex: Pearl Jam played "Jeremy" live there for the first time to a crowd in '91 or so.)

Funny looking back, of all the times I'd gone there, I'm amazed that this is the only handful of photos I have. Must have been having too much fun to take shots for posterity.

Ah sweet nostalgia!