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Chuck D (left) and Flavor Flav fight the power while praising Milwaukee.
Chuck D (left) and Flavor Flav fight the power while praising Milwaukee. (Photo: David Bernacchi)

Public Enemy kill it again

The OnMilwaukee.com Summer Festivals Guide is presented by Pick 'n Save, Where Wisconsin Saves on Groceries. Pick 'n Save is Wisconsin proud, and excited to help promote and feed the great Milwaukee summer that includes festivals and fun nearly every day. Click to save here!

It’s been 33 years since Public Enemy first rallied in Long Island, N.Y.

A quick Google search on the number 33 informs us that the number is the temperature at which water boils on the Newton scale, the degree at which all points of the universe collide and is the numeric equivalent of the word "amen." (1+13+5+14=33.)

Metaphorically, these facts describe what happened on stage tonight when Public Enemy played a 90-plus-minute show that started at 10 p.m. on Summerfest's Miller Lite Stage.

Prior to tonight's performance, the bar was already high – the 2010 Summerfest show has become legendary for many who attended and affirmed that neither age nor fame were stunting nor clouding PE’s message.

Tonight, Chuck D, Flavor Flav, DJ Lord, The S1W group and Professor Griff were, once again, loud and clear. The group delivered an extremely high-energy show during which Chuck D and Flavor Flav were as interactive, prolific and connected as ever with one another and with the audience.

The show opened with "Miuzi Weighs A Ton" and PE went on to deliver "911 Is A Joke," "Welcome To the Terrordome," "Bring the Noise," "Don’t Believe The Hype," "Can’t Truss It," "Do You Wanna Go Our Way," "Fight The Power," "31 Flavors," "Time Bomb" and show closer "Shut ‘Em Down."

Throughout their career, Pubic Enemy defined and redefined hip-hop through their political lyrics that both criticize American culture – as well as the media– and provide a voice for the frustrations of African Americans.

Despite the recent tragedies and outrages in America, during tonight’s show the group made it clear, for the most part, that their message was of peace and connectedness.

"From the bottom of my he…

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Spice up your Summerfest experience.
Spice up your Summerfest experience.

"FanMatch" is like Tinder for Summerfest goers

The OnMilwaukee.com Summer Festivals Guide is presented by Pick 'n Save, Where Wisconsin Saves on Groceries. Pick 'n Save is Wisconsin proud, and excited to help promote and feed the great Milwaukee summer that includes festivals and fun nearly every day. Click to save here!

Wanna hook-up with a special or not-so-special someone at the Big Gig? There’s an app for that now.

FanMatch – which has been called "Tinder for music fans" – is a new mobile app that gives people the chance to browse, chat and meet up at music festivals this summer and fall.

Available in beta on Apple and Android, FanMatch allows users to select from a list of festivals they are attending – including Summerfest. Similar to Tinder, it has a "like" function that matches people based on mutual interests and attraction. 

Chatting with matches is free. VIP features like unlimited chatting is $3.99 for seven days, one month is $9.99 and three months is $19.99.

"Until now meeting new people at concerts has pretty much been left to chance in the beer line," says FanMatch co-founder Ellona Ferson. "Dating apps like Tinder aren’t wired to show you who else is attending specific events, or to make plans in advance. FanMatch is designed to do exactly that."

And in Big Gig speak, it might make your Summerfest smile even wider.

SoLo's bacon bottom pizza is bacon-y.
SoLo's bacon bottom pizza is bacon-y.

Summerfest's newest drunk eat

The OnMilwaukee.com Summer Festivals Guide is presented by Pick 'n Save, Where Wisconsin Saves on Groceries. Pick 'n Save is Wisconsin proud, and excited to help promote and feed the great Milwaukee summer that includes festivals and fun nearly every day. Click to save here!

After decades of attending the Big Gig, I’ve eaten a gluttonous number of Saz’s mozzarella sticks along with a crap-ton of other classic Summerfest food items. However, in the past few years, I’ve attempted to expand my festival food horizons.

Today I picked SoLo’s new, gluten-free, "bacon bottom" pizza. I was stuffing my face with this decadent pie minutes after the gates opened and within a few bites – despite my uber soberness – promoted it to the short list of delectable drunk eats at the Big Gig.

For $7.50, the bacon bottom pizza from SoLo – located just north of the Marcus Amphitheater – is available with sausage and pepperoni or barbecue pulled pork. I picked the pig slice, which also came dressed in Octoberfest barbecue sauce, gouda, mozzarella, red onion, cilantro and chicharron (pork rinds).

Most notable, of course, is the "crust" which looks like a woven mat made with 8 pieces of thick bacon.

"No basket weaving lessons were necessary for the cooks," says manager Mike Drew. "The cooks were quick to catch on."

Overall, the bacon bottom pizza is messy, greasy, decadent and delicious – but only for those who really, really love bacon. I think it will pair well with questionable sobriety and loud, live music.

"And who doesn’t love bacon?" asks Drew.

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Clay, also known as "Clay Fish" and "Fish Face," 1996-2009.
Clay, also known as "Clay Fish" and "Fish Face," 1996-2009.

What are the rules in dog-friendly bars?

A couple of nights ago, I went into a dog-friendly Bay View bar to use my PubPass. There were about eight people in the bar and one dog.

Let it be known that I have cared for dogs, including my dog Clay (pictured above), most of my life and I like dogs.

Anyway, I sat down at the bar, ordered my drink and started chatting with my partner. The dog came over to us and started to lick my feet. I found this uncomfortable – I’ve never liked dogs licking me, even my own pups – and moved my feet away from the dog’s mouth. The dog, however, continued to lick my feet and so I said gently, "Hey, you, stop it."

He or she continued licking and so I asked the woman whom I believed to be the dog’s caregiver to motion to the dog. Either she didn’t hear me or ignored me, but the woman continued interacting with her phone and so I asked the bartender whose dog this was.

"This is a dog-friendly bar," he said flatly in response.

I told him that was fine, I had no issue with that, I just wanted the dog to stop licking my feet. He suggested I take my beer outside. I told him I would, but it was too chilly – the temperature dropped 20 degrees that evening leaving me uncomfortably under-dressed.

He repeated, again, that it was a dog-friendly bar and I said, again, that I just didn’t want the dog to lick my feet. He then said, from the other side of the bar and in earshot of everyone sitting at the bar, that I was clearly a person who liked to complain.

This surprised and confused me. I wasn’t complaining, I was asking for the dog to stop licking my feet. I felt badly that this interaction spiraled to such a negative place.

However, the experience got me thinking. What is the protocol in dog-friendly bars? Should a person have a right not to interact with a dog when in a dog-friendly bar or is the understanding that if people go to a dog-friendly bar they have to accept all dog behavior – from tail wagging to foot licking to leg humping?

I always thought dogs, l…

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