Charvey McLemore @ Green Beetle

Charvey McLemore played the Green Beetle last night. I had never heard him before. My friend Katie Mac recommended I go check him out, and I saw on Facebook that my friends Karen and Dennis were going to see him too. Those are some pretty solid recommendations, so about 9:00 last night I walked south to the Beetle.

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I was glad I did. Charvey is incredibly talented, and has an amazing vocal range. Bars who book acoustic music, if you weren’t aware of Charvey Mac already, you really need to check him out and think about booking him. He’s one of those musicians who seems to have a built-in following of people who will show up wherever he plays. I definitely plan to go see him again.

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Karen and Dennis

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Katie Mac, no relation to Charvey

Fri update: Redbirds rainout, Rodney Phillips @ Flying Saucer tonight, Sesame Street Live, salads @ Mad Earl, where to find crawfish, Mo’s Bows, running tours, overpaid NBA players

The Redbirds suffered a rainout on opening day! If you had a ticket to yesterday’s game, it can be exchanged at the box office for a ticket to any other game except the July 4 one.

The Redbirds will make up the game today, playing a doubleheader. There will be two 7-inning games and the first one will begin at 5:00. Gates will open at 4:00 for today’s BP hat giveaway.

If you’re looking for something to do after the doubleheader, the Flying Saucer will have live music for Acoustic Friday tonight. Rodney Phillips take the stage at 9. Cover is only $2. If you’re a member of the bar’s UFO Club, show your UFO card to get in free.

If you’re looking for something kid-friendly Downtown, Sesame Street Live has four performances at the FedExForum this weekend starting tonight at 6. If you want recommendations for good places to take kids to eat pre- or post-show, my picks would be Kooky Canuck, Flying Fish, or Huey’s, all of which are on Second Street a few blocks north of the arena.

The Mad Earl posted that they will have build-your-own-salads today. Wonder if the Nuh-Uh Girl will show up? She builds salads that are tall enough to ride the rides at Disneyland.

The Memphis Foodie blog has an excellent post about all the crawfish events happening in Memphis this spring. Worth bookmarking if you’re a fan of the mudbugs.

Don’t forget that the Mo’s Bows trunk show, featuring handmade bowties by 11-year-old entrepreneur Moziah Bridges, has been rescheduled for 1-4 PM tomorrow at Shelton Clothiers. He had to reschedule because of last week’s KKK rally. Come support him and add some spring bow ties to your wardrobe!

Like to run? The Memphis Flyer reports on an organization called Rockin’ Running Tours which organizes tours of Downtown and Midtown for runners.

Forbes has a slideshow of the NBA’s most overpaid players for 2013. Hi, Rudy!

Been an interesting week. Normally I’m not a fan of drama. However, when it comes to drama between two of my least favorite people in Memphis, it’s time to pop some popcorn, sit back, and enjoy the show. :mrgreen:

Plans for tonight: The BBQ thing got rescheduled for tonight. My presence isn’t strictly necessary, but I like hanging out with my teammates so I guess I’ll start off at the Blind Bear after work. I’ll figure out the rest of the evening from there.

Thur update: Moody Ques membership once again open, Memphis Dawgs Downtown tomorrow, Wizard of Oz/Ballet Memphis Groupon, new Big East name, Tarik Black, Adonis Thomas, proposed riverfront changes

Edit 5:15 PM: My meeting at Blind Bear got canceled. I’ll be around the corner at Flying Saucer about 5:45 if any potential team members want to talk.

Well, I was wrong about team membership on my BBQ team The Moody Ques being closed for 2013. The team leaders met last night, and we discovered that we ordered more Memphis in May wristbands than we thought. So, we need a few more people to wear those wristbands! If you’re interested in a spot, email me at or talk to me or any other team member when you see us out. I’m going to be at our sponsor Blind Bear about 6 this evening along with our team treasurer and our inspirational leader/father figure if you want to come by and talk then. We’re selective about membership – we don’t want people who will stir up a lot of drama in the team’s booth, retards, or people who will think it’s OK to invite 100 guests. However, if you’re a cool person, let us get to know you a little and you’re likely in!

Good eatin’ Downtown tomorrow at lunch! The @MemphisDawgs hot dog cart, featuring Nathan’s Famous hot dogs, will be at the corner of Main and Union from 11:30 AM tomorrow until at least 3 PM. Come try an Original Memphis Dawg, a Memphis/Manhattan dawg, or whatever you like! The hot dog cart is also available for event catering. Hit them up on Twitter if interested.

I wonder if my “DAWG” John D will get a Memphis Dawg for lunch tomorrow? He works right down the street.

There’s a Groupon for upcoming performances of Wizard of Oz by Ballet Memphis at the Orpheum. You get your choice of three shows on Saturday-Sunday, April 20 and 21. Choose between a $23 ticket (face value up to $45) or a $37 ticket (face value up to $74).

The former Big East conference, which the University of Memphis will become a full member of as of July 1, has been renamed the American Athletic Conference. Probably a good thing that the name includes neither a region or a number.

Gary Parrish reports that Tarik Black has until Tuesday to decide if he wants to transfer to another school for his senior season. Black graduates early this semester, and by NCAA rules that means he can play immediately if he transfers without having to sit out a year. I for one hope the big guy comes back.

Also, the CA’s Jason Smith just broke news that sophomore Adonis Thomas has decided to turn pro, hire an agent, and enter the draft. No disrespect to Thomas but I think that’s a huge mistake. Remember how CDR thought he was a mid-to-late first rounder a few years ago and instead fell into the 40s? That’s what I see happening here. Except it will be more like, position in the 40s expected but instead he fails entirely to get drafted.

The Memphis Design Review Board has asked for some changes to the Bass Pro/riverfront plan. The proposed changes would make Bass Pro Lane, running south of the Pyramid, more bike and pedestrian friendly. Another proposal is for the city to sell some parcels of land, opening up development between Bass Pro Lane and the river.

That’s the news for now. As I said earlier, I’ll be at Blind Bear after work.

Wed update: David Freese to join Redbirds, Chisca Hotel events, Russwood Park photos, South Main space concepts, charity glass night for cystic fibrosis, baked goods at Memphis Farmers Market, Bon Ton Cafe’s bar is open, and more

BREAKING NEWS: Rob Fischer (@thefishnation on Twitter) reported that the St. Louis Cardinals are close to an agreement to purchase the Memphis Redbirds and AutoZone Park. Talks are said to be moving quickly.

St. Louis Cardinals third baseman David Freese will join the Memphis Redbirds beginning April 4. He will be here on a rehab assignment. On March 4 in spring training Freese went tumbling into the stands trying to catch a fly ball, and he’s been sidelined with a lower back strain since then.

If you’re interested in the redevelopment of the Chisca Hotel into apartments and retail space, there are two upcoming events you should know about. First of all, there will be an update on progress at the hotel at the South Main Association meeting on Tuesday, April 9. Terry Lynch, the president of Southland Capital Corporation, will speak. The meeting is at the Arcade Restaurant at Main and G.E. Patterson Avenue. 6 PM social, 6:30 meeting. Cash bar, hors d’oeuvres provided by the Arcade. Free for SMA members; non-members welcome for a cover charge of $10.

On Friday, April 26, the official project launch will take place at the Chisca at 3 PM. Attendees will be able to view proposed renderings of the hotel, and meet the people who saved the site of Dewey Phillips’ “Red Hot and Blue” radio show where Elvis was broadcast for the first time. There will be music and entertainment.

Memphis Magazine has some very good photos of the 1960 Russwood Park fire aftermath. Russwood Park was located near Downtown and is where the AA Memphis Chicks played.

WMC-TV has an image gallery of conceptual plans for unused spaces on South Main. These were unveiled last Friday during South Main Trolley Tour.

Tonight the Flying Saucer will be doing a charity glass night for cystic fibrosis. In conjunction with Yazoo Brewery, they will have a special glass on sale beginning at 7 PM, and 100% of the proceeds from these glass sales will benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The Cordova, Little Rock, and Nashville Flying Saucers will also participate in this fundraiser.

Yesterday I listed some of the many items for sale at Memphis Farmers Market. One thing to add to that list is breads and baked goods from Bluff City Bakery. You can find the bakery’s goods at Bluff City Coffee on South Main as well as at the market. Follow Chef Jason Doty on Twitter at @CraveMemphis to keep up with news from the bakery.

Bon Ton Cafe’s bar is now open. They’re licensed to serve beer, wine, and liquor.

My BBQ team The Moody Ques has now hit its membership cap and is done accepting new members for 2013. Last night at the Blind Bear we chatted with a new team member who used to live in Stockholm. It will be good to have his input, since we’re kind of in a creative funk for ideas to honor Memphis in May’s host country this year, Sweden. We will have several new people on the team who volunteer for Memphis Farmers Market. We also will have a new team member who wears a lot of tube tops. That’s the kind of person I like to have on the Moody Ques.

Looks like I have to do BBQ stuff after work, although I’m sure I’ll find time for a quick beer at the Flying Saucer first.

Tue update #2: Green Beetle crawfish fest and live music, nightclub furniture from a legendary club for sale, Thigh High Jeans, support MFM at SOB this month, and praise for the FedExForum

Got enough news to warrant a second Tuesday post today. First of all, I have more information about the crawfish festival the Green Beetle will hold on Sunday. It will run from 3 to 7, and the Po’Boys will provide the live music. They will cook corn and potatoes in with their spicy crawfish boil, and they’ll have plenty of drink specials during the festival too.

Charvey McLemore will perform at the Beetle Saturday night 9 to 1. Be careful if you order food… he’s one of the Nuh-Uh Girl’s favorite artists, and she may be there, listening to Charvey and asking “can I have a bite??? :) ” off your plate. Chris Johnson rounds out the weekend entertainment at the Beetle, playing Friday 8 to 12.

One of my readers sent me this Craigslist link selling $28,000 worth of nightclub furniture and equipment. If you look at the photos, it’s very clear that the furniture came from the original Raiford’s at Mulberry and Vance.

Great article on the website about Thigh High Jeans, a clothing manufacturing company in Uptown. They are an eco-friendly company that makes clothing from reclaimed materials, and they donate 50% of their profits to charity. They’ve expanded past jeans into other clothing items and purses. Wonder if they make any tube tops? Their apparel can be bought at Sache, Life is Good, and A. Schwab.

In my lunchtime post, I wrote about the opening of Memphis Farmers Market for the season on Saturday. If you want to support the market, you can go to South of Beale this month. During April there will be a line on your check where you can add a donation to MFM.

Check out this review of the FedExForum by an Oklahoma City resident who recently made the trek to Memphis. He had praise for both the arena and the surrounding area. Good to hear!

The Mad Earl had its shuffleboard table delivered today. Open for business 4 PM to 3 AM during the soft opening.

F-U ABC. Bar Louie in Midtown is waiting on its state liquor license. I know we have at least one person quitting my favorite Downtown bar and going to work there. You’re costing her money ABC!

And finally, here’s my buddy Josh modeling some of the clothes for sale at Winfield’s at 2 S. Main:

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Looking sharp Josh.

That will do it for tonight. Eating a Yonge Street Burger from Kooky Canuck. Home and off to bed. Looking forward to seeing a friend tomorrow.


Tue update: Ole Miss baseball game postponed, Redbirds opener Thursday and fireworks Saturday, Memphis Farmers Market kicks off season, tube top shopping, poker final table

BREAKING NEWS: The Tigers baseball game vs. #17 Ole Miss scheduled for 6:30 at AutoZone Park has been postponed. Threat of rain forced the game’s cancellation. This is great news for me, because the local bars would have been filled with popped collars, blue and red argyle, khakis, and obnoxious Hotty Toddy cheers pre-game. It is no fun being around Ole Miss fans if you are not one. They have not yet decided whether to reschedule the game or find a different opponent. I vote for a different opponent!

In other baseball news, the Redbirds have their season opener at home against the Oklahoma City RedHawks Thursday night at 7:05. They’ll be in town until the following Thursday. Saturday’s game in particular will be a big one, with a fireworks display afterward honoring Cardinals legend Stan “The Man” Musial.

The Memphis Farmers Market opens for the season Saturday. It’s at the Central Station Pavilion, Front at G.E. Patterson, from 7 PM to 1 PM. For those who have never been, it’s much more than just a place to buy locally-grown fresh fruits and vegetables. You can also buy fresh flowers, jams and jellies, breakfast goods, arts and crafts, and locally-grown meat and more. Several food trucks usually set up shop at the market and sell breakfast and lunch. There is live music every week and there are usually pet adoptions too. Every Saturday at 7 there are local chefs at the market buying for their restaurants, a sign that the farmers’ goods are held in high esteem by folks who know food. Good opportunity to mingle with your neighbors too. If you haven’t been, you definitely need to check it out.

Sache posted a photo of bandeau tops in many colors to their Facebook page. They even have cute lace ones. Tube Top Month begins May 24, but why wait when these beautiful tops can be yours today?

The final table of Blind Bear’s 16-week poker league is tonight at 8. I haven’t been going to poker there enough to qualify, but I plan on being there tonight to cheer on my friends who won a seat. A new 16-week league will start Sunday night, and it’s free to play, so why not come join?

I stopped by Bardog last night. I had heard there would be a new menu yesterday, but I didn’t notice anything different on the menu I looked at. The Cuban sliders which were one of the specials were very good though.

I’ll be out after work tonight. First stop will likely be the Saucer now that I know the Ole Miss fans won’t be there.

Hula poppers @ Flying Fish

Lately I’ve been making an effort to explore all the items on the Flying Fish’s menu. Yesterday afternoon I tried something new. The Hula Poppers are jalapeno peppers stuffed with cheese and shrimp, and then wrapped in bacon.

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Just about anything wrapped in bacon is a hit in my book, and these were no exception. You get six of them for $8.99. With a name like “hula” poppers, you might expect a tropical ingredient like pineapple or coconut, but the Hula Poppers don’t have anything like that and don’t need it. They are excellent just the way they are. The jalapenos were hot but not enough to overpower the taste of the bacon and shrimp.

Seeing the Hula Poppers as an appetizer, I decided to order an entree too. I picked the jambalaya, one of the few remaining dishes at the Fish that I have never tried.

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Out came a big ol’ plate of jambalaya loaded with Andouille sausage, shrimp, and shredded chicken. It was pretty good, although thinking back, I wish I’d stirred in one of the several hot sauces on the tables at the Fish. I’m used to the level of spiciness of the jambalaya from Court House Deli, and the Fish’s version didn’t quite measure up. If you’re a fan of the heat, you might want to choose the Gumbo & Grits instead when you dine at the Fish. Their gumbo really has a nice kick to it. On the other hand, if you like milder, tamer dishes, I think you will find the jambalaya more than acceptable.

A fine dinner, and as an added bonus I became “mayor” of the Fish when I checked in on Foursquare. I now concurrently hold six mayorships in the Downtown core, the most I’ve ever had. (Edit: Oops, down to five, I lost Huey’s today.)

Mon update: Dejavu to open second location in the Downtown core, that guy who dressed as the Easter Bunny, congrats to a new sports writer, Iron Sheik’s Wrestlemania predictions, new menu at Bardog

I’ve seen activity inside the former Krispy Krunchy Chicken location at 51 S. Main, and this morning I learned what was going on in there – and it’s great news for those who live and work in the Downtown core. Dejavu is opening a second location. Dejavu is a very popular Creole and soul food restaurant on Florida Street, just a few blocks south of Downtown. The couple of times I’ve been, the food has been excellent, but it’s such a small place that I never know if I will get a table or not. The new second location is 4000 square feet, so that shouldn’t be an issue.

The new Dejavu location will have a patio that seats 20 outside. That is great news! Patio dining is making its way farther and father up Main Street.

I’ve seen restaurants come and go in that location, and it almost seems cursed, like nothing can make it there. Even a 600-location chain like Krispy Krunchy Chicken failed. Dejavu, however, has almost a cult-like following already, and I have little doubt it will survive and thrive on Main Street.

Last week a guy dressed in full Easter Bunny costume showed up at the Flying Saucer, Silly Goose, and Blind Bear one evening. Saturday I learned more information about him… he’d spent the day touring local hospitals to cheer up sick kids, and he decided to finish the day with a mini-pub crawl. Good for the Bunny, and he certainly has good taste in bars!

News for my fellow former Sleep Out Louie’s regulars: Our buddy Josh has landed a writing gig for the Jackson Sun. He’s finishing up college at MTSU, and had an internship here in Memphis last summer for Sports 56 WHBQ. It’s great to see him doing well in his chosen career.

WrestleMania 29 is this Sunday. Wrestling legend Iron Sheik wrote an article for Bleacher Report on who the real and who the jabroni at the WrestleMania. Team the Dusty son and team the Bob Orton son are among Sheikie’s picks.

Bardog rolls out a new menu today. If I get a chance I’ll swing by and take a look.

Most likely I’ll have a second post up today after work. It involves bacon, so it’s definitely worth checking back.

Keeping it real this April

You know what? This is April 1. April Fool’s Day. And I had a “Tube Top Month Canceled” post for April Fool’s that some would believe and some not.

But you know what? I played poker tonight (March 31, I’m up late) at the Blind Bear. I had pocket Aces and my buddy Dennis busted me with 10-9. The board came 2-K-6-10-9. Backdoor two pair. That was rough. But I didn’t mind because it was Dennis. We’re family down here. That’s how Downtown is.

An hour later, I found myself at the bar at the Silly Goose. My friend Jason was there. He’d been in the final table but hadn’t been involved in the Dennis vs. me hand. But he told me: “You know, Paul? You’re responsible for me being here. Not here (Memphis) because I was going to move there for work anyway, but here (Downtown). Reading your blog convinced me.” I cannot tell you how much that means.

And you know why this blog remains so popular year after year? It’s not just because I report what’s going on Downtown. It’s because I put myself into it. My thoughts, my opinions. And therefore, you get Tube Top Month. And it’s the real deal and we’re keeping it. So, no joke that it’s going away this year. Instead, a notification for mobile and RSS readers to pull up my blog on the web, because Tube Top Month is coming back for ’13 and the countdown is on. See the right-hand sidebar.

And if you don’t like it I got two words for ya…