By Chris Gray
By Corey Deiterman
By Jef With One F
By Chris Gray
By Rocks Off
By Rocks Off
O'Brien, a stocky, goateed fellow, learned guitar on Telephone Road from a teacher who would accept only one form of currency in exchange for his expertise: beer. "When the six-pack was done, so was the lesson," O'Brien remembers. His bandmates say he's the "real musician" of the group. In 1967, O'Brien's group the Wildcats opened for the Who in Beaumont. (The Who in Beaumont?) His songwriting contributions to the album are more terse than those of Mitcham, with the catchy surf-rock tune, "Lock'em Up, Lock'em Up, Throw Away the Key," being fairly typical of his punchy style.
In conversation he's much more verbose, as when he speaks about a famous former client: "Years ago I helped represent David Crosby. It was a matter concerning revoking his bond up in Dallas. Stephen Stills had kinda talked me and some other lawyers into helping out. Crosby was just sort of dozing out. My job was to keep him awake -- entertain him and talk to him and everything. And then Crosby looks over at me and says, 'Is this what you do every day?' And I said yeah. And he looked over at me and he goes, 'You know what? This is fucking boring.' "
Meanwhile, the unruly citizenry of Houston continues to provide new material for the band. "We've been thinking of doing a song about that gal who ran over her husband three times," Mitcham announces. "You know, forgot he was under the wheel "
"We already have the working title of it," O'Brien adds. "'It Ain't Over 'til I Say It's Over (And I Just Said It's Over).' "
The old couple at the next table is practically in tears.
Jaime Hellcat will be bringing his "vato-billy" Flamin' Hellcats out of their year-plus hiatus on November 28 at Mary Jane's. Gasoline Alley and the Sleeping Rubys, a band that features Jaime's brother-in-law, are also on the bill. The Hellcats haven't purred together since the closing of Emo's Labor Day weekend 2001. As for the cause of the band's lengthy spell apart, one of many breaks the band has taken over the years, Jaime says that the Hellcats need breathing room from time to time. "We're like brothers," he says. "When we're together too much we fight all the time." Lately, Jaime has been leading his other band (the much more diverse-sounding Los Fantastics), getting divorced and making threats like this one: "We've earned our bad reputation. Don't bring your kids to the Hellcats show unless you want Child Protective Services to take them away from you." Waiting for Her is also reuniting this week for a November 29 gig at Rudyard's. This will be the neo-folk/alternative rock band's first show since April 2001 and their last under the Waiting for Her name, as they will be unveiling their new handle at this gig Clandestine piper E.J. Jones has released an album called The Willow with his side project the Willow Band. Guitarist Gerry O'Beirne and fiddler Rosie Shipley back him on most of the tracks, and Wolf Loescher, Paul English, Jen Hamel, Gregory McQueen, Randy Miller and Walter Cross make guest appearances In addition to the Allen Oldies Band, the Del Toros and the El Orbits, one-man music scene Allen Hillhas added yet another affiliation: Feighl and the Fumigators. This band plays in Orkin shirts and hard hats, and if their show at the Continental Club's Swap-n-Bop a couple of Sundays ago was any indication, their fascination with pest control might also extend to an affinity for the drinking of pesticides. A hush of anticipation fell over the Continental's regulars as the band took the stage, and "fumigated" would be a pretty accurate way to describe the band's demeanor as they proceeded to maneuver their merry way from one train wreck to the next.