The Colonel & His Lucky Diamonds and Darkbuster @ The Green Room 5/5/2000
Ah, Cinco de Mayo an everyman's excuse to drink Mexican beer. Like St Patrick's Day the bars usually book something good to drink to- Lupo's had something good booked, but I blew it off because The Colonel is back!
The Colonel, a.k.a. Johnny Maguire was last seen playing wide body for the Amazing Crowns. He dropped out a few years ago to get off the road, but he's back fronting a more traditional band. This was the Colonel and His Lucky Diamonds coming out gig, so I arrived early to make sure I got in.
I got lucky myself and got to watch soundcheck. The band is a 4pc-I guess, but they had two horns sitting in as well. Jonny 'Hollywood' Safford sings and plays guitar, Maguire plays lead guitar, Patrick Griffin plays standup bass, and I don't know plays drums. Frank Moniz from the Agents sat in on sax, Sean Will likewise on trumpet.
The band went through a few numbers like, "The Colonel's Havin A Party," and some instrumentals before Darkbuster showed up. The songs all seemed upbeat, and on the traditional side of rockabilly. I liked the horns, so I hope they are a permanent thing. I talked to The Colonel for a few seconds before they left to change and eat, and he told me that the band has a CD ready, but needs some cash to put it out. Hopefully things will pull together because Maguire is a great wide body player and his new band kicks it pretty nice.
Darkbuster showed up, set up and sound-checked fairly quickly. They're a great band who won the WBCN Rumble and played the River Rave as part of their prize. This gig they tested their set for the Rumble and seemed in good shape.
If you don't know Darkbuster keep an eye out- they play lots of New England gigs and they're willing to play the VFW if your willing to give them some beer money. They play good old school pop punk and most of the songs involve booze. Darkbuster covers the Budweiser song, the Miller song, and even manage to make a sing along out of a stomach pumping story.
By the time Darkbuster took the stage for real the Green Room was pretty crowded. It being a drinking holiday the beers were flowing pretty good. Darkbuster took their share of flying beer, but never managed to get a real pit going. I guess people didn't want to wrinkle their vintage rockabilly wear.
The Colonel & His Lucky Diamonds
Pit or not Darkbuster still managed to rip it up pretty good. They did "Pub," "Caught in a Trap," "Mr. Naughty," "Hometown Looser," "Cheep Wine," and plenty of others that went over well. Its impossible not to like Darkbuster- they lack rock star attitude, play plenty of sing alongs, and their singer Lenny has one of these Mass accents that sounds wicked cool over the PA.
The Colonel and his Lucky Diamonds had plenty of hometown support when they took the stage. I met Hollywood's dad, and some other relatives, as well as plenty of Crowns fans and Prov. scenesters. Hollywood has a good singing voice and he plays good guitar as well. The Colonel is a great showman and his playing continues to get better. Tons of the songs are about the Colonel himself- "The Curse of the Colonel," "The Colonel Rides Again," The Colonel's Havin a Party," "Hollywood Meets The Colonel," ya see what I mean? They also did a lot of party tunes like "Come and Dance," and "Down to the Upside" and it went great.
I tried to pay attention to the stage, but I had started participating in the Corona parade and got hooked at the bar. Although the Green Room isn't the biggest venue by any means the admission is free and the bar is close. People had a great time dancing, drinking and celebrating The Colonel's return. Long live the Colonel.