Angela and I were driving around the West Plaza neighborhood when we spotted this guy dressed as Elvis walking down 48th. He was carrying a guitar and a to-go container from a restaurant and wearing a lei. I had to stop and meet him.
I asked if I could take a picture, he said sure, and as soon as I held up my phone, the King broke into song. So I switched to video mode and made this little impromptu portrait. His name is Phil Casiopo (sp?), and he’s available for all your singin’, guitarin’ and, when the time calls for it, Elvisin’ needs.
Mardi Gras on 18th St. is Kansas City’s best-kept-secret street festival — and probably my favorite community party. It begins early on Fat Tuesday (Feb. 16 this year), with a dawn parade from 18th and Jefferson up through the Westside neighborhood and down the hill to YJ’s in the Crossroads. Then it picks up again around 6 in the evening with merriment all along W. 18th outside of YJ’s, until the parade proper forms and funks its way down to the Mutual Musicians Foundation in the 18th and Vine Jazz District. I made this two-parter doc for Locker Partner.
Pt. 1: Tubas at Dawn
Pt. 2: The Heart of Tuesday Night
The more I get to know them, the more I like Kansas City Bear Fighters. I recently reviewed the plucky acoustic swing band’s latest album, Apocalypse Party, for The Pitch. Using front-porch instrumentation and early-American ragtime and bluegrass rhythms, the KCBFs render devilishly clever and catchy songs about zombie apocalypses, time travel and the joys of tequila. How can you not like ‘em?
After running into frontman Quinn McCue on the streets of our local Mardi Gras celebration (he makes a cameo in video two), I decided I would check out the band’s gig later that week at Davey’s. I didn’t really have a plan. I figured I’d get some photos and write some words for your standard-issue blog review. But since I’ve been dabbling in video, I decided to borrow a digital camera (thanks, Angela) shoot some clips, corner Quinn for a quick interview and piece it all together later. I’d get to work on my video skills, and the band would get free publicity — from all three people who read this blog.
Hopefully this shows you musicians out there how easy it is to produce free video content and spread it to the world. Don’t wait for someone else — bloggers, TV stations, Larry King, whoever — to do it for you. D.I.Y., y’all!