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    Shamus and I, in our quest for good beer, great music and legendary tales, headed into L.A. last evening to visit Molly Malones to watch Rick Kurek and his new band debut.

    He couldn't have picked a better setting. Molly Malones' is an awesome little Irish pub, and certainly deserves its' reputation.

    We wandered in, grabbed a Guinness and headed into the back, where Rick and the lads were setting up. After offering up our greetings to Rick, and finally getting to meet his Gal Friday, Susie, we grabbed aseat and waited, chatting it up with folks and buggin' Rick when he wandered past. At one point I asked Rick if the band had a name yet and he shot back with "Uuumm...The Rick Kurek Conspiracy." Damned good name huh?

    Well I fully expected a great show and was blown away by "The Rick Kurek Conspiracy".

    Let me tell you, I HATE L.A. traffic....L.A. Prices....L.A. Crime....I hate so much about L.A. that I could write about it all day. With that said I must say that I grew up here, and even with all of the things I hate about it, I do love L.A., and last night was one of the premier reasons why I can't wander away from here for very long. If you don't live around L.A., and you love awesome music for musics' sake, then you, my friend, are missing out.

    Rick, the bassist James Kirk, (no jokes please, they've been done to death) and the drummer Franklin Vanderbilt put on a great show. Energetic, with great vocals, an awesome bassist and an absolutely unreal drummer. Altogether a evening beyond words.

    Joined onstage at one point by guest guitarist Dave Wood (sorry, no link), Rick blew the whole house away with the debut of his band. Dave, by the way, is an awesome guitarist in his own right, and added to the show tremendously.

    Once Ricks' set was done another band came up, and I WAS planning on heading out shortly after that, but Rick asked me to hang out so we could catch up and plan another house concert.

    I did one of these at my house last year, and was astounded by the cutting edge music Rick throws at you. At one point, with a 2 track loop recorder on a 14 second loop as his "band", he enthralled my small group of friends and family by tossing a drum beat played on the front of his cello, along with a bit of "didg" into the recorder and proceeded to play his cello in a haunting tune that could have come right out of India.

    While waiting for Rick to make the rounds we watched the second group, The Brian Travis Band play a great little show. These guys have a great sound also, and their leader Brian looks like a second generation clone of Tom Petty. He told me he's heard that before.

    When Brians' band played a song called "Gasoline" I was instantly in love with this unfortunately fitting song, and made Shamus buy the CD right there. I am ordering them as soon as I get done writing this.

    Brians' keyboardest, Matt Brown, astounded me. Even though the sound engineer couldn't get the keyboards volume up he was an amazing sight up there. I had met his wife at this point and told her that she was simply Matts' mistress because those keyboards are his Love. I have never seen anyone play with such unabashed joy and passion, and I eagerly await acquiring Matts' solo album "Bloom".

    As I said it was an unbelievable evening.

    Go check out the links. These guys rock.
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