Last week, Skrappy's held what was billed as its "last show," according to its MySpace page. The venue, which is being forced out of its location at 201 E. Broadway Blvd. due to renovations on the Rialto block, has been seeking a new home for months. Alas, a note on that MySpace page reads, in small print: "Thank you for all of your support for the past 12 years. Continue to support local music."
Here's hoping they can find a suitable new location in a timely manner.
Meanwhile, following a story about the condition of buildings in the Warehouse District that ran in Sunday's Arizona Daily Star, Solar Culture Gallery proprietor Steven Eye canceled all shows at that venue indefinitely. The building was cited for safety concerns, and while Eye, who--like most other tenants in the district--rents from the state, has tried to keep up with repairs, it's become downright impossible to do so. (And, for that matter, what renter, in his right mind, would sink what would likely amount to tens of thousands of dollars into a building that he could be forced out of at any time?)
On early Monday morning, Eye sent out a heartfelt e-mail that reads, in part: "For 20 years now I have rented the historic Wheeler and Perry building at 31 E. Toole Ave.; we now call it Solar Culture Gallery. From the very first day I got there, I fell in love with this building, and have done my best to fix every part that I could. I have never stopped working on this building, making it stronger, and stronger. I truly believe with all my heart that this building is safe for the public ...
"The government who owns our building, and the city where our building is located all say they don't have the money to help our building. They say it is up to us to fix everything. And we have fixed many many things, but not everything.
"Until we can prove to the city that Solar Culture is up to their standards of what they consider 'safe' we CANNOT have larger shows here. I don't know how long that will take. We will try to move our larger shows to other venues. Stay tuned in to our Web site ...
"If you love Solar Culture Gallery this is your time to make your voice heard. Tell people what Tell people what you feel when you come to our building, and how important it is for you. ... Please write a letter and call the mayor and council and let them know what is in your heart.
"We really need your donations now. Please go to the bottom of our Web site and click on the PayPal button to help with our renovations."
That Web site is solarculture.org. We hope some sort of resolution arrives soon in this matter.
As usual, the festival will host a handful of national acts, but the real focus is on local music past and present. Here, then, are the many reasons why any self-respecting music fan will stay in town this Labor Day weekend:
Friday, Aug. 31: Indoor Stage: Creosote (8:30 p.m.); Ian Moore (9:30 p.m.); Pollo Elastico (10:30 p.m.); Supersuckers (11:30 p.m.); Sun Trash (12:30 a.m.).
Outdoor Stage: Class of '07: The Iods (8 p.m.); The Swim (9 p.m.); The Deludes (10 p.m.); Mostly Bears (11 p.m.); Mr. Free and the Satellite Freakout (midnight).
Saturday, Sept. 1: Indoor Stage (all national acts): Broken Horse (8:30 p.m.); Secretary Bird (9:30 p.m.); The Bellrays (10:30 p.m.); Okkervil River (11:30 p.m.).
Outdoor Stage: Al Perry's All-Star BBQ: Al Perry and Matt Mitchell (5 p.m.); Ryanhood (5:30 p.m.); Michael P. Nordberg Band (6 p.m.); Kevin Daly Band (7 p.m.); Al Perry's All-Star Guitar Throwdown (8 p.m.). Class of '77: Bob Meighan Band (9 p.m.); Ned Sutton and the Rabbits (10 p.m.); Chuck Wagon and the Wheels (11 p.m.).
Sunday, Sept. 2: Indoor Stage: Howe Gelb's Hoot, Part II: Howe Gelb (8:30 p.m.); Lonna Kelley (9:30 p.m.); Jason Lytle (former Grandaddy frontman; 10:30 p.m.); Tom Walbank (11:30 p.m.).
Outdoor Stage: Howe Gelb's Hoot and BBQ: The Dusty Buskers (5:30 p.m.); Brad Brooks (6:10 p.m.); Cathy Rivers (6:50 p.m.); Salvador Duran (7:30 p.m.); Friends of Dean Martinez (8 p.m.). (Howe Gelb's Hoot moves indoors.) Class of '97: Al Foul and the Shakes (9 p.m.); Borts Minorts (10 p.m.); The Pork Torta (11 p.m.); The Weird Lovemakers (last show ever; midnight).
It all goes down, of course, at Hotel Congress, 311 E. Congress St. (Events for The Tucson Film and Music Festival take place at Congress, the Rialto Theatre and La Placita Village.) Advance tickets are $8 for a single day ($10 at the door), or $20 for a weekend pass. $40 gets you a weekend pass to both the HoCo Festival and the Tucson Film and Music Festival. (TFMF weekend passes are $30. Admission to single screenings is $5. Those tickets are available at the Rialto box office.) Friday's lineup on the Outdoor Stage is all-ages, all night. Saturday and Sunday's events on the Outdoor Stage are all-ages until 9 p.m. For more information, head to the festival Web site or call 622-8848.
DJ and producer Simply Jeff, who has been dubbed "Southern California's Original Breakbeat Mogul," will headline a bill at Sharks, 256 E. Congress St., on Sunday, Sept. 2. Also on the bill are DJ Hart, DJ Flowchart, J. Armand and Corbin Dooley. Doors open at 9 p.m., and admission is $5 before 10 p.m.; expect to pay a bit more after that. For further details, call 791-9869.
Q: Figurative gun to your head, what is your favorite album of all time?
A: XTC, Skylarking; The Clash, London Calling; The Smiths, The Queen Is Dead; R.E.M., Life's Rich Pageant; The Beach Boys, Pet Sounds; and Willie Nelson, Stardust all have equal footing as my favorite.