MNSKA band Midriff recently posted their official music video for their song “Dialated Dream” on YouTube. The video was directed, filmed and edited by Casey Clay, brother of guitar player Chad Wild Clay. Twin Cities natives may notice that some of the scenes were filmed at the now defunct Dinkytowner bar!
Spring is in the air, and in Twin Cities that typically means that its citizens come out of their winter hibernation and go out to see some live music. Last weekend, Host Courtney Klos did just that and strolled down to The Red Sea in Minneapolis to attend the first big MNSKA show of the Spring. Listen in as he talks to punk-ska band Midriff, ska-reggae activists 2 Tone Runts, and Indiana soul-reggae rockstars Green Room Rockers. If you didn’t get to go to this show, hopefully this episode will properly simulate the experience, minus the happy hour specials.
This past Saturday was a busy day for me, but one I’ll never forget. The afternoon started with heading off to Citizen D’s (from Rude Radio) wedding, which of course was ska-themed, had reggae tunes pumping, and was officiated by his friend and cohost the Reverend Evan. After the wedding, I headed over to the West Bank in Minneapolis to The Red Sea where the big MNSKA ALL AGES show was already in full-swing. Talking with the bartender, I realized that their usual outrageous weekday happy hour special ($2.50 bottles from 4-9pm) was extended to this Saturday because they wanted to give back to the MNSKA crowd. I thanked him for the kind words about the website and for the extra special happy hour and headed into the club.
Already ripping through their punk-ska set was the dapper-dressed trio known as Midriff, who were making their MNSKA debut. They were in the “covers portion” of their set where they played technically proficient renditions of NOFX‘s “Linoleum” (see video) and The Suicide Machines‘ “New Girl” (see video). I wanted to load them into a time machine dialed to 1997 and have them play at my high school.
The club was packed and getting more full as the night wore on. Next up were MNSKA favorites 2 Tone Runts who kicked things into gear with “Cute Girls In Combat Boots.” This was the first time I had seen the band since they brought on new drummer Greg Futchi and had Lee playing trumpet on a few numbers. I think the extra touring this band has done in the past year has really enhanced their performing skills as they put on a very fun and groovy show. They tried out a new song simply called “Reggae Music” (see video) that I hope makes it onto their next release.
The first two acts were uptempo, causing the packed crowd of dancing fans to break a sweat. I grabbed a drink to cool down at the bar and talked with Chris, who lives in Fargo, ND, who made the special 4-hour trip for the show. He was drenched from all the dancing and the night was only half over! He was driving back immediately after the show, proving his ultimate dedication to the ska scene…what a trooper!
Now that the club was nice and hot, MNSKA rocksteady group The Prizefighters took the stage. I haven’t been to a Prizefighters show I haven’t liked, and this one was no exception. They ripped through a nice long set of songs including “Karma,” “Storms,” and my favorite “Hypocrite.” They also managed to get the entire club singing the chorus of their soul song “Outside My Window.” Big thanks to Aaron Porter from The Prizefighters for booking this already amazing show!
Now it was time for the main event! From West Lafayette, IN, the wildly popular soul-reggae group Green Room Rockers kicked into action and filled the dancefloor with fans old and new. This was my second time seeing them so it was an absolute treat to see them in such an intimate setting. They grooved the crowd with original tunes like “Northbound Train,” “Broke,” and “Conqueror” (see video). They also got the crowd excited with some old-school reggae tunes like “54-56 Was My Number” (see video) from Toots and the Maytals and the Symarip classic “Stay With Him” (see video). They closed the night with a pair of soul songs, including original “You and I” and the Etta James hit “I’d Rather Go Blind.” Despite the late night, the guys had to pack up the van and speed on home to Indiana so they could get to work in the morning. It was a great way to kick off the spring/summer concert season for MNSKA and we are so glad that the GRR guys made the trip up to MN. Can’t wait to have them back!
Just a friendly reminder of the big ska and reggae show happening at The Red Sea (320 Cedar Ave) in Minneapolis TONIGHT brought to you by MNSKA.com! Indiana’s hottest soul-reggae band Green Room Rockers returns to the Twin Cities for the first time in 2 years. Joining them will be MNSKA activists 2 Tone Runts, bringing their danceable grooves and vocal harmonies with a message. Also on the bill is MNSKA rocksteady band The Prizefighters. Making their MNSKA debut with their original ska-punk stylings is Midriff. Doors open at 5pm with music starting at 6pm.
As always at the Red Sea, drinks are available with ID, and their unique happy hour specials go until 9pm! Get down to the West Bank tonight and rock the Red Sea with the Green Room Rockers and MNSKA.
And for those interested, there will be an afterparty over at the Bedlam Theater. HOTPANTS will be there spinning all sorts of deep soul tunes to dance to!
Today’s video is live footage of MNSKA band 2 Tone Runts performing “On The Front Line” at Swing State in Lake Villa, IL on March 21st, 2010. They will be playing at The Red Sea in Minneapolis, MN on April 17th with Green Room Rockers, The Prizefighters, and Midriff.
ATTENTION GREEN ROOM ROCKERS FANS! I’m pleased to announce another contest brought to you by MNSKA! The red-hot Indiana soul-reggae band the Green Room Rockers are coming back to Minneapolis, MN to play an ALL AGES show at The Red Sea (320 Cedar Ave) on Saturday, April 17th. Special guests include 3 MNSKA bands: The Prizefighters, 2 Tone Runts, and Midriff. The doors are at 5 pm and show is at 6pm.
You can enter to win tickets by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include ‘Green Room Rockers’ in the subject line. I will randomly draw a winner on Thursday, April 15th. Good luck, everyone and remember…it’s just like the lotto: you gotta be in it, to win it!
Indiana’s hot reggae-soul sensations Green Room Rockers have posted a new video of their cover of the Etta James tune “I’d Rather Go Blind.” The video was taken at Columbia Street West in Fort Wayne, IN.
Exactly one month from now (April 17th) the Green Room Rockers will be playing in Minneapolis, MN at The Red Sea with MNSKA bands The Prizefighters, 2 Tone Runts, and Midriff. Check out the SHOWS page for details!
Big MNSKA show announcement! The red-hot soul-reggae band from Indiana, the Green Room Rockers, are returning to the Twin Cities! On Saturday, April 17th at The Red Sea in Minneapolis, MN, they’ll be playing an ALL AGES show with all MNSKA bands including soul-rocksteady group The Prizefighters, ska-punk activists 2 Tone Runts, and punk-ska band Midriff. Doors will open at 5pm with music starting at 6pm. Stay tuned to MNSKA.com for a chance to win tickets to this show!
Welcome to the inaugural episode of our very first ska podcast! You always remember your first or some other such double entendre. Courtney starts it off with a bang by introducing to the world a truly gifted trio of DIY ska punks known as Midriff from St. Paul, MN!
Track of the Day: “Change Again” by Midriff from the album Merchants of Cool
Minneapolis punk/ska band Midriff finished up their album Merchants of Cool, one that has been in the making since 2001. After recently stumbling upon the unfinished tracks, the band decided to pick back up and complete the album. Half of the tracks were recorded when they were in school and the other half is from a performance at a house party in 2003.
The entire album is FREE to download from iLike and can be found HERE.