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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The Firebird Celebrates its Five-Year Anniversary with the Black Angels, Roky Erickson

Categories: Local History

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Press Photo
Roky Erickson and the Black Angels play the Firebird's five-year anniversary show.
This Saturday, February 1, the Firebird (2706 Olive Street; 314-535-0353) celebrates its five-year anniversary with an already sold-out show featuring the Black Angels and Roky Erickson. With his new project, the 800-capacity the Ready Room set to open this spring, owner and talent buyer Mike Cracchiolo spoke with us about the history and future for his venues.

See also: Mike Cracchiolo Discusses the Ready Room

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KDHX Begins Broadcasting from New Location: Photos

Categories: Local History

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Jaime Lees
KDHX, Magnolia Avenue, South City

We headed over to the KDHX (88.1 FM) studio yesterday morning to document the last couple of hours of broadcasting at good ol' 3504 Magnolia Avenue.

At noon the beloved station began broadcasting from its new location at the Larry J. Weir Center for Independent Media. Primarily funded by grants and donations, this brand new multi-million dollar broadcasting hub in Grand Center will offer the proper space and amenities to host the ever-growing station.

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Premiere: New Video By the Finns, Reuniting This Saturday

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photos by Toby Weiss, via The Finns Facebook page

St. Louis indie-rock legends the Finns will reunite to play a show at Blueberry Hill's Duck Room this Saturday. As with its previous reunion shows, this event is a must-see for fans of power pop or St. Louis music history.


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Native Sound Studio: A Look at David Beeman's Impressive New Recording Space

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Photo by Blair Stiles
Beeman in the control room at Native Sound.

It takes twenty stomps to ascend the white staircase to David Beeman's Native Sound Studio. Only after one navigates a bar in the midst of construction are the stairs visible. Two confused yet affable builders stare. The bespectacled one nods and says, "You just go up those stairs. Don't turn right. Don't. You have to turn left." The cryptic nature of his instructions is suspicious. The building looks like it has been gutted, everything painted in a pure, unicorn white that blinds when paired with light bulbs and lamps hung in a haphazard fashion. It feels an altogether foreign reality.

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