Cough, cough: Solo act chokes

Mike Doughty at Starr Hill
218 Water Street March Madness
Sam Wilson Quartet at Orbit Billiards


It's been a while since I made the scene, and even longer since I produced a string of words for my column. So last week I decided to hit a few of my regular spots– and a few not so regulars. Let me break it down.

I dug Soul Coughing back in the day when they dropped that hybrid fusion thingy with the samplers and cool drumming. Amid the garbage on the radio at the time they were very much a saving grace.

So I was happy to learn that lead cat Mike Doughty had a gig scheduled at Starr Hill. This had the potential to be a good evening. I'll give it to you, dude: You've got to have some serious chutzpah when you charge $10 at the door for an acoustic solo set. I mean, for ten bucks you better be harmonizing fart bubbles with your choruses or something.

Alas, we weren't so lucky. He did capture my attention for about... hmmm... 9 minutes and 45 seconds. I'd say that was two short songs and one long one. I had to dip out when he referred to "the 'ville" and "Char-diggity" for the tenth time. Ends up dude only played for 45 minutes. Forty-five minutes for ten Washingtons... Get real, dude.

Anyway, prowling was redeemed a bit on my next excursion. For those not familiar with the underground party scene, let me school you. Since the beginning of March, various individuals have been throwing gatherings/parties at 218 Water St., not to be confused with Club 216. You do not need a membership to attend. All you need to do is bring $5 and your dancing shoes (and in some cases, your appetite).

Since the parties started, they have featured a host of reggae, dancehall, and hip-hop DJ's, local and otherwise. The vibe is nothing but positive, and the food at the event I attended was amazing (traditional West Indian and West African cuisine).

Please support these events every Friday and Saturday through the month of March.

Lastly, I'd like to pay special attention to the Sam Wilson Quartet. They've graciously played Orbit Billiards for the last few Sunday nights to desperately lame audiences. Granted, we have our share of amazing jazz here (D'earth, Jospé), and one may think there's little room for more.

I motion for supporting these extremely talented young jazz cats as well. The Sam Wilson Quartet can play and play well. Try them on for size next Sunday.