Music all day. Barbeque pork. $2 beer specials. Free koozies. Country and psychedelic music. If this isn’t summer, I’d like to know what is.
Steel City Sounds, a new event planning group in Birmingham, has put together a fine afternoon that will transform our beloved Parkside Café into a newer (and punnier) venue: Porkside. Powerhouse headliners \\GT//, the Dirty Lungs and Banditos will certainly bring the noise. Supporting acts Redface and Creature Camp will be making their Birmingham debuts. Sylvia Rose and the Primitive Talk round out the bill.
There will be juicy meat and buns served all day, courtesy of the Barbecutioners and Hotbox, Parkside’s new in-house café, as well as a tasting of Still Crossroads Alabama ‘Shine. They’ve got everything but the kiddie pool.
Anyone who is a regular reader of Weld has probably, at some point, heard of or even heard the heavy ghost traveling psychedelic rock of \\GT//, or encountered the dudes of the Dirty Lungs, who specialize in a brand of sex-pop-fuzz that, while not as heavy as \\GT//, has plenty of drunken insight and golden teeth in reserve. Many Birminghamians are also familiar with Banditos, who are currently chasing that bismuth rainbow and living that honky tonk dream as they blast through the Southeast for the rest of the summer, leaving behind a trail of banjos and hair that can only be described as epically devastating. These three bands are more than worth the price of admission alone. A pittance, considering what’s on the table! Yes, these bands have been around a while and each have built up quite the reputation and following. So let’s take this opportunity to meet one of Birmingham’s newest bands, Redface.
Well, kind of new. John Burke and Mandi Rae have been playing together for about 10 years in some capacity. They both play in a group fronted by Rae and have formed Redface as a separate entity with the design of performing more of Burke’s songs.
“John is a phenomenal songwriter, and we are gonna change things up and do more of his songs as Redface,” says Rae, the hotshot country singer and mother of two who becomes a professional paint peeler when she stands behind the microphone. “We’ll do a few of mine and he’ll be leading that way more.”
Burke adds, “I’d like to add a drummer at some point, but for now we’re focusing on a deconstructed acoustic sound.”
Ramy Nouredini (guitar/pedal steel) and Alan James (bass) round out the lineup.
Not only are Redface and Creature Camp making their first live appearances, but Steel City Sounds are just getting their feet wet in the music industry of Birmingham and beyond.
Michael Davidson formed the promotion company back in February and is currently in charge of booking. He brought Brantley Nelson on board in April to handle social media, marketing and to assist with scouting local talent. And our old friend Mandi Rae is also involved in social media and public relations, as well as tackling some of the more hands-on musical decisions, such as sound and stage management.
“We want to bring quality music to Birmingham and promote our local scene at the same time,” Nelson says. “We believe that if we can help put a positive spotlight on the amazing talent in this city, it can only help propel our community forward. It has become more than music for us, though. We hope to spotlight many areas of art, entertainment and food if possible by bringing in different local vendors during our shows. Our goal is to give the attendees a Birmingham experience.”
And so the Birmingham narrative of the past couple years continues. Under the banner of moving forward, we’ve seen a major increase in the number of musicians and artists making a go at it. Restaurants and bars are finding new and creative ways to make eating a unique experience and a great big thread in the social life fabric.
It’s gonna be a fun summer day/night. Hope to see you there. I’ll be the one covered in BBQ sauce, drinking a $2 beer in a koozie and rocking my skull out to some \\GT//. And since there’s not a kiddie pool at Porkside, let’s all go jump in that dirty goose pond across the street at Avondale Park.
Po/arkside will take place on Saturday, June 14 from 1-11 p.m. Doors open at 12:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door.