Tag Archives: bands

Hidden Pond Gala A Success?

30 Jun

Hidden Pond Maine’s fabulous grand opening gala was a huge success this past Friday night.  The beautiful people of Kennebunkport and surrounding areas flocked to the resort.  Unfortunately, this being suburban Maine, it would have taken an army of Beverly Hills plastic surgeons to make them actually beautiful.  (Maybe that explains the Open Bar.)  And though these party-goers might be designated the coast’s “Cultural Elite,” very few could be confused with Henry James, William Dean Howells, Dorothy Parker, or Edmund Wilson.  A more apt comparison would land them accurately and fairly with Lawrence Fine and the Howard brothers. 

The residents of Goose Rocks Road must have swelled with pride seeing their once-quiet street turned into a facsimile of a luxury car dealership.  BMW’s, SUV’s, Mercedes, Lexus, and even the occasional Caddy lined the road shoulder, manned by a squad of hard-working valets.  That the slamming car doors and revving engines displayed more rhythm than the music bleeding from the midst of Hidden Pond is a sorry statement of fact.

Emails and phone calls flooded Hangover Headquarters during the shindig.  The band could be heard clearly throughout the neighborhood, keeping children awake and causing dogs to howl.  It’s not that we object to music.  But if children are going to be subjected to lack of sleep, it constitutes cruel and unusual punishment when the offending tunes are produced by the most pathetic of musical groups:  The Wedding Band.  Do not the cultural elite and beautiful people deserve music with heart, integrity, and substance?  Why torture them (and us) with an onslaught of hackneyed, over-played Top 40 trash?  The kids would be all right if they were forced to listen to the Who, Billy Joe Shaver, Stones, Clash, Hannah Montana, Nirvana, Lyle Lovett, Dwight Yoakam, Graham Parker, Graham Nash, Bob Dylan, John Hiatt, or Lucinda Williams, etc.., (Just check the music category of the blog and you’ll get the idea).  Instead it was Love Shack,  Fly Me to the Moon, Last Dance, Some Kind of Wonderful and countless other lowest-common-denominator musical cliches.  

Kennebunkport has a sound ordinance which states that:

It shall be unlawful for any commercial establishment, without special permission from the Board of Selectmen, to allow electronically amplified sound to be emitted from, or outside of their establishments. (Adopted at the Annual Town Meeting on March 15, 1980.)

The Hangover finds it hard to believe that the fine selectmen of our town would allow innocent residents to be subjected to such awful music.   Hopefully, this was as close to pirate radio as the resort will ever get.  But we can look at the bright side:  As advertised, Hidden Pond is somewhat secluded and we were spared the visual of the full-bellied, well-heeled attendees attempting to dance.   The horror, the horror.

Three days later, life here has returned to normal.  Money was raised for some charities (one of which got to compromise its good name as a bonus).  No permanent harm was done.   Expansion will come to Hidden Pond next year and there will likely be another grand-opening gala.  The Hangover has but one request:  Get a real band.  Please.    

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Songs for Drinking: The Hangover’s Best

14 Mar

The Hangover’s extensive research into music and libation has been thorough and produced meaningful results.  It’s shown that a good drinking song will spiritually and physically enhance any alcoholic beverage.  Contrary to some popular notions, the best tunes are not meant to be screeched by a bus full of skunked English soccer fans.  Instead, they connect personally to a drinker, offering reason to imbibe, a road map to revelry, and a blockade against regret.   

(This list may come in handy with St. Patrick’s Day dead ahead.)

The following are The Hangover’s Five Best along with corresponding drinking recommendations : 

“One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer”–George Thorogood and the Delaware Destroyers (on Greatest Hits: 30 Years of Rock)

Thorogood took John Lee Hooker’s classic “my baby’s left me and it’s last call” blues tale and expanded it into a slide guitar-powered “War and Peace” of down on your luck woes.  The song provides plenty of reason to listen and drink–triple fisted as the title suggests.  While Hooker’s version is good, Thorogood’s is great.  George’s narrator is a vivid barstool storyteller who becomes ironic, sarcastic, and presumably drunk.

The Hangover recommends:  a shot of Jim Beam, a shot of Ballantine’s, and a draft of the cheapest domestic beer on tap. 

“Are you drinking with me Jesus?”–The Beat Farmers (on Viking Lullabys)

The bible tells us that Jesus liked his wine, but we don’t know if he enjoyed a brew.  Sung by the legendary Country Dick Montana, this song brings a twisted spirituality to slugging down beer.  It’s a romp that asks the musical questions, “I know you can walk on the water, but can you walk on this much beer?” and “If you’re drinking with me Jesus, won’t you buy a friend a beer?”  It also sounds as if there might have been a bottle or two kicking around the studio during recording.

The Hangover recommends:  A shot of Jagermeister (Country Dick’s favorite, which he often drank out of the bottle while standing on the bar in the midst of a Beat Farmer’s show) and a beer (Ask yourself:  What brand would Jesus drink?) to chase it down.

“I Got Loaded”–Los Lobos (on How Will The Wolf Survive

This Mexican influenced rock celebrates a bender.  Last night it was gin; night before last it was whiskey; tonight it might be wine.  The chorus consists of variations on: “But I feel all right/I feel all right/I feel all right/I feel all right.”  The Hangover is with you, boys.  Fans of Bull Durham will recall hearing this song as Crash Davis and his teammates let loose with the ball field sprinklers and then slid and flopped around the bases in their civvies while drinking cans of beer.

The Hangover recommends:  A six pack of Miller High Life, in cans, in the spirit of the movie.

“Thunderbird”–Shaver (on Electric Shaver)

Songwriter Billy Joe Shaver’s character traces a failed relationship through the rising price of Thunderbird wine.  The song is sung to his woman, with the singer longing for the good ol’ days when “loving you was fun and the price was forty twice.”  Of course, things have gone to hell with the girl and the jug now costs $1.29.  The singer longs for yesterday.  Who could blame him?

The Hangover recommends:  Toughen up and grab a jug of Thunderbird.  That’s how the professionals do it.

“Alcohol”–Gang Green (on Another Wasted Night)

This is an old school punk ode to, yes, alcohol.  Chris Doherty screams his allegiance while his band buzzsaws through the power chords.  The lyrics are simple and to the point:  “No doubt about it/I can’t live without it/Alcohol.”  There are also references to 100 proof blood and cocaine.  And they’d “rather drink than fuck.”  It’s always a pleasure to see a band passionate about their subject matter.  Check out the video on youtube to see what you’re getting into with these guys.

The Hangover recommends:  This band’s T-shirts were formatted as Budweiser labels.  Go find yourself a forty, or at least a quart.

Other songs that were considered:

“Red Red Wine”–Neil Diamond (original artist).  Great song, but if you’re drinking to forget, as the singer here is, one might need something stronger.

“Cuervo Man”–The Syphlloids.  While extremely obscure, this song extols the virtues of tequila and makes fun of martini drinkers.  Could not be chosen for the Fab Five because The Hangover co-wrote it–no conflicts of interest allowed (This isn’t the McCain campaign, after all).

“If You Don’t Start Drinking (I’m going to leave)”–George Thorogood.  This is a good song by a master of drinking songs.  It just isn’t as good as the one that heads the list.