As I was getting ready to go out Friday evening, I heard a television weather yakker say that it was unseasonably cold that night. Wrong. It’s always cold during Lincoln Exposed, no matter what the long-term data says.
But this year was particularly raw with temperatures in the single digits Friday and Saturday, and snow falling both nights. That likely kept the attendance at the festival featuring only Lincoln bands down -- few shows at any of the five venues were packed --- but it didn’t put a chill on the music.
My major takeaway from three of the four nights of the festival (I missed Thursday for the Avenged Sevenfold Pinnacle Bank Arena concert) is that Lincoln has some fine bands -- not 100 of them, but a very good number for a city of 275,000 people.
On that list -- that I saw -- I’d put Orion Walsh & The Ramblin’ Hearts, Thirst Things First, Will Hutchinson, Red Cities, the Killigans and Evan Bartels & The Stoney Lonesomes.
I’ve only included groups that I caught for at least 30 minutes of their 40-minute sets. A couple more made me want to check out full shows -- Sweats and Sleep Sinatra.
Saturday, KZUM Radio’s 40th anniversary celebration was wrapped into Lincoln Exposed, with bands on both Bourbon Theatre stages. The plus was the KZUM bash brought out people that likely wouldn’t have hit the festival. The minus was the concentration of many of the most popular bands in one venue on one night.
Rock docs redux
“Sir Doug and the Genuine Texas Cosmic Groove,” my longtime friend Joe Nick Patoski’s terrific documentary about Texas musical master Doug Sahm, is, at last, available for streaming on Amazon Prime.
Utilizing what vintage footage was available -- a lot from “Austin City Limits” -- and recollections of friends, family and bandmates, like Vox organ king Augie Meyers, the documentary follows Sahm from playing for Hank Williams as a boy to the Sir Douglas Quintet and “She’s About a Mover,” a move to San Francisco at the height of the hippie era, his role in the development of Austin music and the Texas Tornados.
A motormouth Texas music encyclopedia who could play everything from blues to country to rock 'n' roll to conjunto, Sahm, who died in 1999, was the coolest guy I’ve ever known. He gets his due in Patoski’s film. Now we need to get him in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Also available on Amazon Prime is “Ticket to Write: The Golden Age of Rock Music Journalism.”
I’m in this one, recounting how I learned about rock in the '70s via magazines like Rolling Stone and especially Creem and providing some of the framing for interviews with the writers and editors of those mags and other outlets.
If you’re interested in rock journalism and want to hear some good stories about, say, Lester Bangs, the Hunter S. Thompson of rock writers, or the rock writers convention that, it could be argued started the Big Star cult, I’d recommend checking out Raul Sandelin’s doc, which aired on NET a couple weeks ago.
Finally, on the rock doc front, I’d recommend “This is Pop,” a Showtime production that looks at British band XTC.
While XTC’s resident genius Andy Partridge says “This is Pop” isn’t a standard rock doc because the band didn’t follow the “Behind the Music” cliched path, it, in fact, is a rock doc and a very good one, giving insight to one of the great, if lesser known, guitar pop groups ever. If you’re an XTC fan, you need to see this one.