Five years ago, Milwaukee's Dusty Medical Records exploded -- quite literally -- onto the scene by releasing the Black Lips' "Live at WFMU" LP, which nearly instantly became a collector's item.
In honor of that anniversary, the label is preparing to celebrate.
Over the years, Dusty Medical has issued records by The Goodnight Loving, The Midwest Beat, A/V Murder and a number of other local, regional and national bands.
The enduring part of the toast to five years of activity is the summer release of four new records by Milwaukee bands, including the long-awaited and much-discussed new disc from Call Me Lightning called "When I Am Gone My Blood Will Be Free."
That one comes out July 20, followed by a new one from Sugar Stems on Aug. 10 and from Drugs Dragons later that month. But first up is the latest from The Midwest Beat.
More ephemerally speaking, Dusty Medical -- which also encompasses a booking, promotion and DJ business called The Get Drunk -- will get its party on with a pair of shows on Friday, June 25 and Saturday, June 25.
The Dusty Medical Records & The Get Drunk's Fifth Anniversary Celebration Funtime Event encompasses two 9 p.m. gigs at Club Garibaldi on Friday and Saturday.
The Friday lineup features Call Me Lighting, Drugs Dragons, The Elephant Walk, Montreal's Red Mass, Chicago's Hot Machines and The Get Drunk DJs. The Saturday gig has The Goodnight Loving, Plexi 3, The Midwest Beat, Sticks N Stones, The Get Drunk DJs, and Minneapolis' France Has the Bomb.
There will also be an exhibition of Karen Gauger's photos taken at The Get Drunk gigs over the last five years and a show of the label's archive of gig posters created by artists like Luke Chappelle, Von Munz, Christopher Capelle and others.
And if you still feel the need to pay homage to 60 months of rock and roll energy, there will be a classic country record spin from 4 to 10 p.m. on Sunday at Burnheart's. --Bobby Tanzilo
If you head to Summerfest later this week, there is a good chance that you'll run into people having a great time in various states of inebriation. Some of them may be wearing Hawaiian shirts. There is no way, however, that the combination of those two elements at the Big Gig can approach the magnitude of what will take place Saturday at Alpine Valley in East Troy.
Jimmy Buffett is coming ... and so are the Parrotheads.
It's hard to explain the Buffett experience to those who have not encountered it. Think "Grateful Dead vibe" but mix in a lot of "rich yuppies with elaborate tailgate setups that include blended rum drinks."
Love him or hate him, Buffett serves his audience like few other artists in the history of popular music. The fans show up. They show up early. And, they show up to have a good time -- rain or shine.
A look at stubhub.com revealed tickets available for between $31 and nearly $3,000. The truly devoted will tell you that you can't put a price on a night in heaven. --Drew Olson