Long Live the Laurelthirst! Here on Viking Twang!
Written by Randy Black on January 4, 2017
Viking Twang Show 113, January 4, 2017
Good morning, welcome to Viking Twang Episode 113. My name’s Randy Black; nice to have you all here today.
You may have heard that our beloved music club, the Laurelthirst Public House, has a new ownership group. The pub’s owners since its founding in 1988, David Lee Williams, Bill Leeds, and Steve Weinland, decided to retire, and to keep from selling it to a developer, offered the place to a group of the club’s employees and supporters: Nicolas Zerr, Bart Yanoch, Brandon Logan, and Lewi Longmire. In a time when great places are closing all the time, it’s a miracle we still have the place.
So to celebrate, we’re going to play all music from the ‘Thirst today. The second set will be some of the staples from the time that I’ve been going there, starting in about 1999. The third set will feature some of the new generation of musicians who are making the Laurelthirst their home. But first, we’ll play some of the early stars who set the tenor of the place from the start.
1 – Turkey Red; W.C. Beck & the Portland Country Underground.
2 – Hello; The Tree Frogs. John Henry Bourke sings lead and plays guitar on his own song, with owner Bill Leeds on keyboards. From the original Live at the Laurelthirst album in 1993.
3 – Bitter Friends; Neil Gilpin’s Belmont Street Sextet. An expanded version of the sextet, with Gilpin on vocals and guitar, Mike Danner on piano, Dan Haley on mandolin, and Tim Acott on bass.
4 – Paper Doll; The Dan Haley/Becky Kapell Quartet. They’re joined by Russ Miller on guitar and Acott on bass.
5 – 61 Rap/My Red Joystick; Billy Kennedy. This is from the second Live at the Laurelthirst album in 1998. Billy’s joined by Mike Danner on accordion, Brian Jones on bass, Tim Acott on bass, and Randy Givens on drums. Lisa Lepine, who we also lost this past year, produced both albums.
I started coming to the Laurelthirst in 1999 or so, after seeing a lot of the bands play when I worked at the Crystal Ballroom. First show I saw was a Happy Hour by the Little Sue Country Band. So here she is:
6 – Down To You; Little Sue. From her second album, 2001’s Crow.
7 – Mountain Blues; Jackstraw. Darrin Craig, Jon Neufeld, David Pugh, and Jesse Withers, from their 2002 album, Home Far Away. They’ve played Tuesday Happy Hours for years.
8 – Blackheart, James Low. The title track to James’ 2002 album, with Lewi Longmire, Matt Voth, Marilee Hord, and Dave Camp.
9 – Mudslide Blues; Lewi Longmire. Lewi is one of the new owners and has done the club’s booking for years, as well as played the Thursday Happy Hours. He’s joined by Caleb Miles on guitar, Kevin Cowan on bass, Chris Hutton on drums, Jenny Conlee-Drizos on organ, and David Lipkind on harmonica.
10 – Ponies In Your Head; Lynn Conover. Her own song from 2001’s Strange Bird, with Billy Kennedy on mandolin.
11 – Porkie Had A Neighbor; Freak Mountain Ramblers. They’ve held down the Sunday Happy Hours – we call them Church – for more than 16 years. Bass player Dave Reisch sings this Jeffrey Frederick song, with Jim Boyer, Turtle Vandemar, Kevin Ritchey, and Roger North. From 2001’s Looks Perfectly Legal To Me.
By the way, as you know, we lost our friend Jim Boyer last Jan. 21. The Laurelthirst will hold a tribute to him called Heavy Boots on Saturday, Jan. 28, and we’ll have a tribute to him on the Twang that Wednesday, Jan 25.
Our final set will feature some of the bands that have come along lately to make the place their own, We start with The Resolectrics.
12 – Down To The Water; The Resolectrics. Tate Peterson, John Becher, Ben Mores, and Andrew Stern, from their 2013 album. High Water.
13—Brittle Bones; Love Gigantic. From their 2014 self-titled album, the band is Sara King on vocals with Chet Lyster and David Langenes on guitar, Lara Michell on keyboards, Arthur Parker on bass, and Ryan Moore on drums.
14 – Ragdoll; The Hill Dogs. This Newberg-based band is Taylor Kingman, Ricky Rohr, Lucas Benoit, Kayla Stroik, and Rowan Cobb. From their 2013 album, Ghosts of Champoeg.
15 – In Time; The Don of Division Street. This band is led by longtime ‘Thirst drummer Matt Cadinelli; from his 2012 album, L’Amourita.
16 – Daybreak in Vegas; The Countrypolitans.