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The Pub

The Pub

They come from all corners of the city. Pretenders, has beens, wanna-be’s, hip-hoppers, rockers, jazzers, punks, cowboys, poets, hard-bitten professionals, and lounge lizards with anemic chops. It’s Tuesday night at the corner of N. Fratney and E. Wright, and though it’s only 9, the joint is already startin’ to jump. Co-founders Mike Olson and Ben Rousseau, in and out of bands together for more than two decades, have been around enough open stages to formulate their own vision of how things should be done. “We don’t care what kind of music you play or even how well you play it. The club owner, Derek Magnuson, is totally cool and lets us do what we want. When you come here, if you wanna play, you play,” promises Olson. It’s true, there is an unmistakable air of give-and-take ambiance that most open stages never find. Olson, a chef by trade, always cooks up a batch of free fixins just in case anybody is hungry. Chili (killer) and mostaccioli with green peppers and homemade sausage are a few treats he’s apt to rustle up. Maybe it’s the food or the one-two punch of ample booze that makes it work. Whatever the reason, an upbeat if slightly woozy vibe prevails. Some come to test-hop new material; others to recruit musicians for bands they’re hoping to form. Still others just want to hone their skills or throw it at the wall to see if it sticks. Some are great and some suck. Therein lies the beauty. Check your ego at the door and get it on. Nobody is headlining and nobody gets left on the sidelines — further proof that music is indeed a universal language, a soothing elixir that’ll cure what ails ya…and oh yeah, there’s no cover charge. Rob McCuen pens for FlatOut Magazine and currently fronts his new power-trio, White-Hot Tizzies.
The Pub

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