As we roll along into the last full weekend of September (Oct. 1 is a week from Sunday), let's get outside while we can to enjoy the last of the year's under the sky gigs, while preparing ourselves for the upcoming colder weather and inside shows to come.
On Thursday, the Moving Pillsbury Forward group sponsors a special event called "Echoes of Pillsbury" with live music by End Times Trio and a presentation by author, archaeologist and artist Robert Mazrim. Held at the old Pillsbury Mill plant and featuring displays of interesting artifacts from the site, the show runs from 5:30-7 p.m. with a $25 donation requested (former Pillsbury employees and neighbors are invited as guests). Come on all you Doughboys!
This weekend, George Rank's presents a couple of reunions of Springfield-based bands as Condition 90 drops on Friday night and the Suns of Circumstance land Saturday. All this is happening mostly because John Walter is back in town and once played in both bands. Walter joined C-90 with Tom Persinos, Tony Berkman and me in 1984 and was a founding member of the Suns with high school mate Mike Burnett, along with Larry Kruder and Bob Berning, circa 1988. Condition 90 made a cassette called Now! in 1984, then a 45 rpm record in 1986 that almost got released, plus played a lot around the Midwest before hitting the proverbial band breakup wall.
The Suns morphed into one of the longest-running bands around town with several different members through the years, but Burnett was always the consistent one. Walter left for San Francisco in 1990 and formed a band called Yah-Yah Littleman with Jim Ko and Darren Womack, who were also from Springfield. That trio toured all over the country and you can still find their music on Bandcamp today. How about that for a quick local music history lesson?
For our C-90 show we're going to do two sets of all the songs we used to do back then, plus some Walty songs and whatever else happens. The Suns definitely have Mike, John and "Cowboy" Bob playing, plus Joe Dawkins as well. I'm not sure who else, but for sure there will be some "whatever else happens" as mentioned for Friday. Thanks for coming to town, John, and stirring up the pot.
It's time once again for the Chatham Paws-a-Palooza and Kite Up the Park, an event of two fests at once, both about "raising money for the ongoing maintenance and improvements to the Chatham Community Dog Park" and produced by bassist extraordinaire and a fine friend to dogs everywhere, Jeff Cunningham. Along with the canines and kites experience, you better believe there will be live music as Solar Chariot (12-1 p.m.) and Mary Jo Curry (3:45-4:45) provide the tune time fun in the sun.
Don't forget, (and it's hard to miss) this weekend Springfield hosts the International Route 66 Mother Road Festival (congrats to Coop and Shaner). I know the cars are a big deal, but this is a music column, so look for After Sunset on Friday (8-10 p.m.). Then on Saturday, it's Union Avenue (1-3 p.m.), Deja Voodoo (4-6 p.m.) and the Neverly Brothers (8-10 p.m.), all at the Isringhausen Imports main stage at Sixth and Washington streets.
For some more festive fun, head down south to Palmyra this Sunday to Vixen Hill Winery and the 6th Annual Cigar Box Guitar Festival. Hosted by Logan's Homegrown CBGs, the music kicks off at noon and features Cody and the Chameleons, plus special guests.
Go have some fun and see you next week.