Up in Oxford last Thursday, city officials were again nervous about Miami University's infamous, unsanctioned all-day St. Patrick's Day celebration, where students start drinking green beer before the crack of dawn and don't stop until the day is done (or they collapse from alcohol poisoning, whichever comes first). It's a St. Paddy's event, but it customarily happens the Thursday before students leave for spring break. If you still want that 5:30 a.m. "first call" experience, Mt. Lookout Tavern is starting their "Kegs and Eggs" event at that time Saturday. But if you aren't quite ready to commit to the all-day thing (and still want to test your stamina), head over to the Mad Frog Saturday instead. Besides running from 5 p.m. until 2 a.m., there's some pretty slammin' local music to go along with your Irish-inspired revelry.
The event title is a mouthful — "asiProductions presents: Squirrel Jam 2007. The First Annual Cincinnasty Music Festival" — but the concept is fairly simple: An all-evening/night musical party featuring an eclectic lineup of local Jam-friendly bands. Headband kicks things off at 5 p.m., followed by piano rockers TrifectaFunk, Reggae kings Selecter and Bluegrass/Newgrass faves, The Rumpke Mountain Boys (who play two sets, with the first starting at 10:30 p.m.). Food will be served 4-8 p.m. (courtesy of Hyde Park eatery Red), and there will also be raffles for items from Hemptations, a hand-blown "glass display" by Burndem (see: burndem.com) and a tie-dye booth.
Let's just say when you hear people talking about celebrating "the Green" at this show, it has nothing to do with St. Patrick.
Ryan Noga, who runs asiProductions and works with the Rumpkes, is putting the event together. Noga says he hopes this is just the beginning of Squirrel Jam, which he envisions as a bigger event.
"I'm hoping (this) will grow into a large outdoor event as early as this fall," Noga says.
Admission is $10 in advance or $12 the day of the show. (rumpkemountainboys.net/squirreljam)
More Local Notes
· Another good show featuring an eclectic lineup of local acts goes down Friday at the Southgate House. View-finder and Noctaluca will be joined by Pearlene for the 10 p.m. concert. Pearlene frontman Reuben Glaser says their amazing recent release, For Western Violence and Brief Sensuality, recently picked up distribution from big-time indie carrier, Carrot Top. The album goes national in May. Also in May, Glaser and his bandmates are rejoining Cincinnati Soul great Kenny Smith for another gig. Pearlene backed up Smith — whose international profile has been raised thanks to a singles collection released by the local label Shake It Records — when he was inducted into the Cincinnati Entertainment Awards' Hall of Fame last year. That show drew fans from out of town, just so they could see Kenny's first show in nearly 30 years. At Northside's Gypsy Hut on May 17, expect a longer set from Kenny and his full backing crew. Pearlene, Viva La Foxx and local Soul expert Chris Burgan (who'll spin records as DJ Iceburg) are also scheduled to appear. (pearlenemusic.com)
· Another unconventional St. Patrick's Day show (i.e. one that has nothing to do with Irish culture whatsoever) takes place Saturday at The Gypsy Hut. The free concert features Cincinnati Suds (which has been keeping the Greenhornes' Craig Fox busy while his bandmates tend to Raconteurs duties) and Iowa Blues rockers Radio Moscow, who are on the road supporting their recently released debut for Alive Records (also home to Cincinnati's Buffalo Killers). The band's debut was produced by Dan Auerbach of Ohio greats The Black Keys. (myspace.com/cincinnatisuds)
· Jazz singer April Aloisio is celebrating the release of her new album, Daydream, with a CD release party at Chateau Pomije in O'Bryonville this Thursday. The disc is the fifth for Aloisio, who has performed with Cincy Jazz legends like Kenny Poole and Jimmy McGary and often mixes in Bossa Nova and other Brazilian flavors into her own silky mix. For Daydream, the singer teams with pianist Phil Burkhead for a duo album of classic ballads. Aloisio performs at 6 p.m. Thursday. (aprilaloisio.com)
· Finally, Over the Rhine fans have the opportunity to see the band in a very intimate setting this weekend. The group is playing the Canal Street Tavern in Dayton on Friday and Saturday. About a month ago, the band's label, Back Porch Records, released Discount Fireworks, a retrospective featuring songs from each phase of the band's storied career (including cuts from their I.R.S. Records days). The band plays at 9:30 p.m. both nights. (overtherhine.com)
CONTACT MIKE BREEN: mbreen(at)citybeat.com. Go to citybeat.wordpress.com for daily musical news and views.