Mobile has been home to many beloved watering holes that also served as venues for local bands. Throughout the ‘70s, Thirsties Tavern provided musical entertainment for the students of both Spring Hill College and the University of South Alabama. Of the many bands that performed there, The Blues Band is touted by many to be one of the most popular. The band’s lineup boasted talented locals Topper Price, Harold Floyd, Carroll “Fang” Barrett, Wick Larsen, Mike “Ratt” Connell and Twiggs Lyndon.
On Labor Day weekend 1976, The Blues Band brought recording equipment into Thirsties to record their performance. 92 ZEW’s Tim Camp served as the engineer during this session. Vickie Barrett, who is the wife of The Blues Band’s Carroll “Fang” Barrett, saved the reel-to-reel masters and recently had them digitized for a release called “Labor of Love 1976.”
This album is being released with philanthropic intentions and coincides with the Thirsties Reunion, which will be held on Friday, May 15 at Alchemy Tavern. After meeting the monetary needs of financing both the album and the reunion, the proceeds from “Labor of Love 1976” will be donated to the Musicians Brotherhood, a local nonprofit that provides financial assistance to musicians in need of medical procedures but do not have the money.
Physical copies are available, and digital copies can be purchased through CD Baby at www.cdbaby.com/m/cd/thebluesband. Donors to the Thirsties Reunion page on the charitable website GoFundMe can also obtain a copy of the historic local album.
Port City Men’s Chorus holding fundraiser
In 2005, the Port City Men’s Chorus (PCMC) brought together both gay and gay-friendly men who wished to donate their voices in the name of community spirit. Since, the group has defined its mission to pursue “musical excellence in performance” and “promote social exchange within a group of men with a common purpose.”
Throughout the years, the public has experienced the PCMC at events such as ArtWalk, Mardi Gras and the Mobile Pride Celebration. Now, they are asking for the public to help support the group of musically-minded men with a very special event.
On Sunday, April 26 at 6 p.m., the PCMC will perform “Port City Goes Pop” at the Cornerstone Metropolitan Community Church, 1007 Government St. While entrance to the show is free, the chorus invites those planning to attend to arrive at 5:30 p.m. for a silent auction. All proceeds will support the group’s mission.
Panic returning to The Wharf
As we were going to press, Widepsread Panic announced on their website they would be returning to The Amphitheater at The Wharf on Friday, May 22, along with special guests Col. Bruce Hampton and the Madrid Express and Bloodkin. Tickets will go on sale this Friday, April 24 at 10 a.m. For more information, visit widespreadpanic.com/tour.