Apop Records: An Oral History From the Local Music Community

Categories: Local History

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Courtesy of Tiffany Minx
Beryl, the Apop Records store cat.

By Joseph Hess and Mabel Suen

Patrons of Apop Records found a wide range of intriguing things to peruse and amuse the years, from half-naked no wave bands to Beryl the grouchy-yet-lovable store cat. When Tiffany Minx opened the store in 2004, she planned on running the operation for maybe five years. Now, after a decade of slinging counterculture ephemera, she's ready to move on. The brick-and-mortar storefront on Cherokee Street will offer up its last slabs of wax on Monday, October 27.

See also: Apop Records Celebrates Ten Years at Plush: Photos

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Artist Karl Haglund Shares Stories Behind Paintings for Billy Bragg, Ryan Adams & STL Musicians

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Courtesy of Fugitive Art
Karl Haglund's paintings of the late Bob Reuter's guitars.

We all know that a musician makes art, but in some cases, a musician makes art. Tangible art. Visual art.

Karl Haglund is just such an artist. A painter from Charles City, Iowa, Haglund grew up with creative parents, forging his own paths through both music and craftsmanship. As an adult, though, Haglund has managed to merge his interests, painting extremely detailed guitars and sharing musicians' stories of what makes these instruments so personal and special.

"I see an old guitar that's beat up, and I think of it as a work of art instead of just an instrument," Haglund tells RFT Music. "I see the guitar as its own piece of art in itself."

See also: Painter Karl Haglund Brings St. Louis Musicians' Guitars to Life On Canvas

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Livery Company Moves Down the Street To Former Radio Cherokee Space

Categories: Local History

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Bryan Sutter for RFT
When Livery Company (3211 Cherokee Street) opened in south city two years ago, co-owner Emily Ebeling envisioned the concept as a low-key, vintage cocktail bar that paid tribute to the Cherokee neighborhood's post-Prohibition heyday. What she didn't expect is that it would become a hotspot for local and touring bands to plug in their guitars and play.

In addition to serving as a reliable watering hole, Livery Company has played host to a variety of intimate concerts including folk, punk and everything in between -- Guitardog and "Go Folk Yourself" shows as well as the punk-and-noise-drenched Electric Kool-Aid Acid Kat Fest are among some of the most memorable in Ebeling's mind. Now she's ready to get back to her concept's roots by moving the business a few doors down to 3227 Cherokee Street, the corner space formerly housed by DIY music venue Radio Cherokee.

See also: Wild Times at Electric Kool-Aid Acid Kat Fest 2

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Bob Reuter To Be Remembered By St. Louis Community in Show At Ready Room Saturday

Categories: Local History

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photo by Jaime Lees
Bob Reuter giving a partial thumbs-up outside Off Broadway in 2011. (He was unsure how to feel about being forced to wear my STL bling necklace.)

I keep wondering what Bob Reuter would have to say about the recent violence and civil unrest in St. Louis. He would have a lot to say, no doubt. He always had a lot to say.

That was probably my favorite thing about him: how he could go on and on about any old thing. The man could spin a yarn. Most of his stories seemed to be exaggerated for effect, but that was part of his charm. In any case, Reuter seemed incapable of keeping his mouth shut. In a world where many commentaries are muted or diluted for a potentially disapproving audience, Reuter would've been talking and commenting all over the Internet and losing Facebook friends left and right. He would've been blabbing, and it would've been entertaining, at least, and possibly infuriating. Or it might have been insightful and wise. He was unpredictable, that Bob.

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Lemmons Oral History - The Lost Interviews

Categories: Local History

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Photos by Mabel Suen
Skarekrau Radio at Lemmons, circa 2010.
In this week's music feature, we talk about Lemmons, the beloved  south-city spot for punk rock and pizza. The dive bar closed recently to the surprise, and dismay, of many. We were unable to fit all the interviews of people's favorite memories from the bar's twelve-year existence into the print edition, so we've included some outtakes here. Read on for more stories from Lemmons' staff, patrons and more.

See also: Memories of Lemmons: St. Louisans Recall Their Favorite South Side Dive Bar

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Memories of Lemmons: St. Louisans Recall Their Favorite South Side Dive Bar

Categories: Local History

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Lemmons leaves a long legacy behind.

by Joseph Hess and Mabel Suen

"Like anything, there are ups and downs. When there are more downs, it's time to get out. I'm just exhausted," says Michael Gross, former owner of Lemmons, beloved south-city spot for punk rock and pizza. The dive bar closed last week to the surprise, and dismay, of many.

Throughout the course of twelve years, Lemmons was carried on the back of its bartenders, bookers and local bands. Though the spot served well enough as an off-kilter sports bar, its real identity came from live music.

See also: Lemmons to Close, Owner Says "The Real Problem...Is Me"


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Angel Among Us: An Oral History of Angel Olsen's Time In St. Louis

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Autumn Northcraft
Angel Olsen
"OK, here's the deal: I'm not prep, I'm not punk, I'm not grunge, I'm not emo. The only label I go by is my name, which happens to be Angel -- even though it doesn't make sense when you compare it to my character." --Angel Olsen's STLPunk.com profile, circa January 2003.

On April 27, Angel Olsen comes to town in support of her second and latest album, Burn Your Fire for No Witness. It's a phenomenal record: sprawling and emotional in its scope, dramatic and understated at turns, with strong melodies and nuanced vocals at its core. As it happens, Olsen is a St. Louis native. Between roughly 2003 and 2007, she quietly developed her songwriting and performing skills around town before departing for Chicago and eventually Asheville, North Carolina.

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LaFarge Pokes Veteran's Administration for Plans to Destroy Palladium

Categories: Local History

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Press Photo
One of St. Louis' most popular musicians entered the fray to save a nightclub pivotal to the history of St. Louis' music.

In a op-ed letter published on St. Louis Public Radio's web site, Pokey LaFarge chastised the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' desire to raze the Palladium (Plantation Club) at 3618 Enright Avenue in Grand Center. The club was also featured in this recent Riverfront Times piece about the threats to the landmarks of St. Louis' black music legacy.

LaFarge's plea, published Sunday, detailed the club's rich history as once a crown jewel in the city's early jazz scene.

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Adorable St. Louis 5-Year-Old Releases Rap Video About Black History, Is Awesome

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Screenshot from the video.
Looks like a member of last year's RFT Music Awards winner for "Best Hip-Hop Group" has spawned a Mini-Me -- and damn if he isn't talented and adorable.

Heir Jordin is the five-year-old son of drummer and Doorway rapper RT-FaQ, and he's already following in Daddy's footsteps. Born Jordin Jackson-Prince, the tyke has taken a shine to rapping and recently released his debut song and video, "Proud History," which celebrates his African American culture and heritage.

"He's pretty excited," says RT-FaQ. "He keeps asking me, 'Has the world seen it yet?' I told him it's going to take some time, but it's coming."


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Here Is the Setlist from the Beatles' 1966 Concert at Busch Stadium

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George Vale | Flickr
The Beatles sort of looked like this when they performed at Busch Stadium in 1966.

This month fans all over the United States have been reliving Beatlemania, thanks to the 50th anniversary of the Fab Four's defining appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show. Without a doubt, the Beatles majorly changed rock & roll in the early 1960s. Mop-top hair, smart suits, witty wisecracks, three- and four-part harmonies -- the Beatles had it all. But what really helped the Liverpool lads make their mark was taking the best of Chuck Berry, Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly and synthesizing it all into an earth-shattering sound that prolonged rock & roll's reign and paved the way for music's British Invasion in America.

See also: Ten Fun Facts About the Beatles' Ed Sullivan Debut, 50 Years Ago

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