Monday, November 26, 2007

Decoys in Hopkins

The Subsidies will wrap up their whirlwind tour across southeastern Minnesota on Thursday, December 6, at Decoys in Hopkins.

The thrill-a-minute crew have had a brutal tour schedule as of late, playing a whopping four shows in the matter of 5 weeks, including shows in St. Paul, Rochester, St. Paul, and finally Hopkins. Take it from the Subsidies... the rock star life isn't always hookers and blow. Well, 80% of the time it's hookers and blow, but that last 20% is tough. Signing autographs, getting restraining orders, traveling from city to city in extravagant tour busses, etc.

After the Hopkins show, which starts a little earlier than normal (9pm), the band will be taking a couple weeks off for a little R&R. The 2008 tour starts in mid-January. So, get out to Decoys and see The Subsidies before they are huge and no longer have time for you.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Istanbul is Constantinople

So, there once was this cool bar in St. Paul called Spanky's. I don't know who or what Spanky was, or why he/she/it owned a bar, but it was pretty cool none-the-less. Sadly, Spanky's went bye-bye for whatever reason.

But, like a phoenix rising from the ashes, the bar has been re-opened (was it ever closed?) by new management and is now called the Tavern on the Avenue, or as the hipsters say, "Tav on the Ave."

Anywho, The Subsidies will be making their very first appearance at Spank... ummm, the Tav on the Ave on Saturday, December 1st. If you've been to this fine establishment before, you know that it was made for live music. There's a main bar area with the works, and to the left is a quasi-side room solely dedicated to the live music. Some of the metro's finest bands have played here, and now The Subsidies can be added to that list. Why not ring in the new month with a little rocktastic deliciousness?!

Tavern on the Avenue
825 Jefferson Avenue in St. Paul
Saturday, Dec. 1 at 9:30pm

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Scrapbooking Rocks!!

We wanted to send a quick "thanks" out to the ladies of the Northwest Regional Scrapbooking and Jewelry Making Association - the NWSJMA - for their participation in our Rookie's show last Saturday.

A bit of background:

Rookie's Bar and Grill, one of our top favorite venues to play, is attached to the Radisson Hotel in Rochester. Because of this, the bar gets spill over from any event, such as weddings, bar mitzvahs, car show, etc, which happens to be going on in one of the many hotel conference rooms. During the Summer it's not unusual to find an entire wedding party and many of its guests dancing to a band at Rookie's, eschewing the DJ who was hired for their wedding.

Well, this weekend was no exception, except there were no weddings happening. Instead, the NWSJMA - a group of 150-or-so women between the ages of 24- and what seemed to be 223-years old who enjoy scrapbooking, bedazzeling, and making jewelry out of beads, dried cereal and mixed nuts - were in town for their bi-annual conference.

If we're being honest here, our first impressions upon hearing this news were not positive. We expected to find a group of "librarian-style" women heading for bed around 5PM after eating some corn dogs and slaving over a hot glue gun all day. Sorry. We're shallow and unlearned like that.
Needless to say, we were WAY OFF... The group of women we met were hell bent on doing three things in Rochester; "Scrapin'" (as they call it), f_ckin', and getting drunk. Not your typical group of women, that's for sure.

We were definitely up to helping them achieve at least two of those - I'll let your mind take over.

With some additional incintive from Minnow, the bar's manager, in the form of free drink tokens, we hit the convention hall and started making friends. While a few of the women took the drink tickets and made them into jacket buttons, many others took the tokens and started in on the partying. Many of these women let us know they'd be back for our show later that night.

Since we like to perform in front of crowds larger than 4 people, we thought we'd nail the invite home by coming back later that evening, pre-show, and perform an acoustic song for them. Upon arriving back at the hall a couple of hours later, we found the group STILL scrapbooking - - 4 hours later!! We came to find out they spent over 12 hours in the same room, scrapbooking... holy shit!

After waiting for the ladies to finish an intense game of Deal or No Scrapbooking Deal, Grant and I took over.

Grant strummed the chords for Sleepy Jean and I sang for the group. It went over much better than expected, even so much that a few of the ladies took their bedazzled-blouses off, showing us their screen-printed t-shirts underneath emblazoned with saying such as "Scrapbooking is God's Gift" or "Bedazzling Gets Me Off."

They loved us, thanked us, and after they finished for the evening, many of them came in and watched us perform.

So, a special THANKS to you ladies for helping to make last Saturday such a success and a blast!!!

The Spoiled Under 30 Crowd

I'm not a huge fan of email chains, but this one I received today really struck a "chord"


When I was a kid, adults used to bore me to tears with their tedious diatribes about how hard things were when they were growing up; what with walking twenty-five miles to school every morning ... uphill BOTH ways .. yadda, yadda, yadda

And I remember promising myself that when I grew up, there was no way in heck I was going to lay a bunch of crap like that on kids about how hard I had it and how easy they've got it!

But now that I'm over the ripe old age of thirty, I can't help but look around and notice the youth of today. You've got it so easy! I mean, compared to my childhood, you live in a dang Utopia! And I hate to say it but you kids today you don't know how good you've got it!

1. When I was a kid, we didn't have the Internet. If we wanted to know something, we had to go to the dang library and look it up the card catalog!! (Do you even know what a card catalog is? Didn't think so.)

2. There was no email. We had to actually write somebody a letter...with a pen! Then you had to walk all the way across the street and put it in the mailbox and it would take like a week to get there!

3. There were no MP3's or Napsters! If you wanted to steal music, you had to hitchhike to the dang record store and shoplift it yourself. Or you had to wait around all day to tape it off the radio and the DJ would usually talk over the beginning and mess it all up.

4. We didn't have fancy stuff like Call Waiting! If you were on the phone and somebody else called they got a busy signal, that's it!

5. And we didn't have fancy Caller ID Boxes either. When the phone rang, you had no idea who it was! It could be your school, your mom, your boss, your bookie, your drug dealer, a collections agent, you just didn't know!!! You had to pick it up and take your chances, mister!

6. We didn't have any fancy Sony Playstation video games with high-resolution 3-D graphics! We had the Atari 2600. With games like "Space Invaders" and "asteroids" and the graphics were horrible!. Your guy was a little square. You actually had to use your imagination. And
there were no multiple levels or screens, it was just one screen forever. And you could never win. The game just kept getting harder and harder and faster and faster until you died! Just like LIFE!

7. When you went to the movie theater there no such thing as stadium seating. All the seats were the same height! If a tall guy or some old broad with a hat sat in front of you and you couldn't see, you were just screwed.

8. Sure, we had cable television, but back then that was only like 15 channels and there was no onscreen menu. You had to use a little book called a TV Guide to find out what was on. And there was no Cartoon Network either. You could only get cartoons on Saturday Morning. Do you hear what I'm saying!?! We had to wait ALL WEEK for cartoons!

9. And we didn't have microwaves, if we wanted to heat something up, we had to use the stove or go build a fire ... imagine that! If we wanted popcorn, we had to use that stupid JiffyPop thing or a pan with HOT oil and Real popcorn kernels and shake it all over the stove forever like an

10. When we were on the phone with our friends and our parents walked-in, we were stuck to the wall with a cord, a 7 foot cord that ran to the phone - not the phone base, the actual phone. We barely had enough length to sit on the floor and still be able to twirl the phone cord in our fingers. If you suddenly had to go to the bathroom - guess what we had to do..... hang up and talk to them later.

You kids today have got it too easy. You're spoiled! You guys wouldn't have lasted five minutes back in 1980!

The over 30 Crowd

Mark Your Calendars!

I'm not a designer, but Joe's sister plays one on TV:

Sunday, November 18, 2007


What's black, white, red, and sore all over???

The Subsidies!! HA!

All cheese aside, we had a GREAT time at Rookie's last night. Thanks to all who came out. You definitely have not seen the last of us down in Roch.


Thursday, November 15, 2007

The perils of myspace

A sugar-induced near coma resulted in the following bulletin post on our myspace site:


I am so not even kidding here.

If you dig music, even remotely, you owe it to yourself. Seriously. It would almost be a sin to avoid this opportunity. Not entirely a sin, but dangerously close. And, honestly, that counts almost as much as a real sin. Actually, I'm not as up on my "what is a sin and what isn't" these days. You know, with the economy and such.

Stop distracting me. Seriously. If given this opportunity.. just handed this chance... and you pass?! Well, that's just crazy talk. That's "terrorists have already won" talk right there, and no one wants that. Down right un-American. Speaking of which, is it weird that I live in Minnesota and have never been to Canada? I just don't see the draw, really. I hear Montreal is nice for a couple days in June. Oh well.

Damn it! Again, with the distractions! My POINT here is that this Saturday has just been deemed The Subsidies Day in Minnesota. Well, southern Minnesota. Well, Rochester. So, if you live in Rochester, and you are still alive come Saturday night, you are legally required to drive to Rookies around, what, 9ish, and have the night of your life with us. Ok, maybe not the night of your life, but at least the night of your week. Easily.

Here are the specs:

-Saturday, November 17 at 9:30pm
-Rookies Bar in Rochester
-1517 16th St. SW
-Exclamation points!

Check out how hot we are at Really hot folks.

"Brevity is the soul of wit." -- Bill Shakespeare

Thanks to the Rochester Post Bulletin for this stunning blurb:

- - - - - - - - - - -

This band covers a lot of songs
When it comes to rock/pop music, nothing is off limits for The Subsidies.

The Subsidies play Saturday night at Rookies Sports Grill and Bar, 1517 16th St. S.W. in Rochester.

There is no cover charge.

The Minneapolis-based cover band plays it all, including the Beatles, the Monkees, Jackson Browne, Johnny Cash, Neil Diamond, Cyndi Lauper, Bon Jovi, Journey and the Clash. But that's not all; the list also includes the Violent Femmes, Green Day, Weezer, Matchbox 20, Pete Yorn, Semisonic, Snow Patrol, the Killers, Good Charlotte, Maroon 5, Kelly Clarkson, the Fray, John Mayer, Jason Mraz and even a few TV theme-songs.

The band's only prerequisite is that the song has to be "good."

More about the band at
The Subsidies

Return to Rochester

The Subsidies will make a repeat trip to Rochester on November 17 to rock the house at Rookies Bar and Grill. This place is a little hidden, but it's worth the effort to find. Very cool venue, great sound, and a fantastic crew running the show.

We're calling this our "Halloween Hangover Show," as we'll all be coming down from our collossal sugar highs. Ah, it's nothing a few beers can't cure. And there's no better way to burn off those 37 Almond Joys you ate than to dance the night away with us.
Come on out to Rookies and help us do it up right.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

It's the most wonderful time of the year

No, it's not Christmas yet (though Macy's would have you believe otherwise...). It's that most very special time of year when high school seniors are making decisions about if and where they will further their scholastic pursuits. Our very own Joe Lover, Subsidy guitarist / mastermind extraordinaire, recently received his mid-term grades and everything looks to be on the up and up. That's right, Lover will be graduating from Eagan Senior High School spring '08 with plans to attend The University of Wisconsin - River Falls for their prestigious dairy science program. "I became aware of my passion for dairy at a very young age" said Lover. "Milk, cheese, ice cream, I find it all so... lactosinating!" As a child, Joe's "utter" fixation on all things cow was fostered through many long hours of intense labor on the Lover family farm. "I think the concept of hard work is lost on the majority of my peers. There is something to be said for getting up at 5:00 am to pull on some sweet tiet. Nature's nectar... it really makes you grow, as a person." Lover's first hand knowledge of the bovine variety will prove invaluable as he begins his studies in the fall. Like most Dairy Science majors, the sky will be the limit for young Lover upon graduation. "I hear Cold Stone has some openings..." No need to worry, Joe plans to commute back to the cities weekly for Subsidies gigs, keeping up his skill via intense sessions of Guitar Hero during his down-time.

Friday, November 9, 2007

About Men

A friend of mine - we'll call her "Ashley" - recently started reading a book about Men. The book, titled "For Women Only: What You Need to Know about the Inner Lives of Men," was written by Shaunti Feldhahn - who should be tried for robbery. The author, a woman, is speaking to women, trying to educate them on what exactly makes men "men". What a crock of shit.

How is this book not the length of your average fortune cookie fortune? We really need 346 pages on this? Unless the author copied and pasted a paragraph over and over again, this is the biggest scam since Catholicism or that book "The Secret".

Ms. Feldhahn goes into detail in this book about what us men are really thinking and what it is that makes us "tick". It's amazing. I liken it to me writing about about how the door handle on my Hyundai works and subsequently going into detail for 500 pages:

Chapter One:
The Handle opens the door.

"Uh oh... now what do I write about?"

Chapter Two:
Remember What I Told You In Chapter 1? Well, That Still Holds True.

Let's delve into Ms. Feldhahn's prose here a bit, shall we?

"It turns out these men have similar internal wiring as us women," she states in Chapter 1. "At their Inner Core, men have the same fears and concerns, feelings and needs as women." Really? I share the same fears as my female counterparts? "What bra shows my breasts off the best? What non-vital aspect of my husband's makeup/DNA should I pick apart for hours on end? Why does my husband just sit there silently? What part of my body makes me look fat?"
You know what, we are the same!!!

She continues, "My husband's willingness to open up about these revelations, revelations that he, like all men, face a constant, hour-by-hour, minute-by-minute battle with the temptations that beckoned from every corner of our culture, from the secret traps of the Internet (??) to the" - and this is the best one - "overt appeal of the miniskirt walking down the street."

HOW DOES SHE KNOW ME SO WELL!?! MY GOD ... it's like reading my own thoughts. Like Ron Burgandy's dog, Baxter, the author here truly cuts to the core of me.

Puke. Come on.

"Ashley," you paid money for this when all along I and any other man sitting here would be willing to "let you in on our secret" for free. Hell, show me your boob and I'll even write it down for you. Let me clue you in on something, "Ashley": the national magazine companies have it down pat. Look at all of the magazines targeted at men, your Maxim's, Playboys, hell even Outdoor - all of them have a scantily clad woman and a tag line like, "Get her hot in the sack," or "how to get her to do things in the bedroom she refuses to," or "Fantasy Football Offseason (with photos of the Philadelphia cheerleaders)"

I would write a book about it - what makes us men "tick" - but I imagine a publisher would have a hard time (that's what she said) agreeing to spend money on printing the following:

"Men, it seems, are at their very core made up of two wires - so to speak; one wire which runs from their penis to their brain and the other wire, which runs from their penis to an unseen "sports" hub somewhere near their heart and then back to their brain. Men want sex, sports, and they want women to leave them alone unless the first two items happen to be included. Dress like a sexy maid, talk dirty to us (without us having to provide the script), let us drink beer with our friends, let us watch sports, and don't bother us with big questions like, "What are WE?" and we'll provide for you, let you provide for us, dress how you want us to dress, and basically, be your bitch... You need to understand that when a man is sitting and watching TV with that blank stare on his face (the one which has you so frought with confusion), he isn't sitting there hiding some secret wish or desire to convey his inner-most fears and secrets to you, he's actually NOT THINKING - his caveman-DNA has kicked in, dormant for eons - and he simply has shut down. If you'd REALLY like to turn him back on, shave your legs, trim your pubic hair, and pretend - at least at the surface - that you like sex again (like the 20-year old who duped us into being with her)."

Man, you could read that in one bathroom sitting.

It's amazing that "Ashley" and others like her paid to have someone say, "We all know that men are 'visual,' but what does that mean?"

The door handle on the Hyundai, when pulled open, allows the door to start ajar and then open to its fullest, like a buxom young woman's legs at the Senior Prom.

I Think My Cat is Dying

I think my cat, Jordan, is dying...

When I kicked him in the gut last night, as I like to do, he didn't respond with his normal ferocity and try to attack me, but instead sort of whimpered and spit up some blood.

Jordan, an orange tabby, is now roughly between the age of 10 and 20 years old. I bought him in college from a family who owned 13 snakes, 12 other cats, myriads of bird species, and a couple of dogs even Mike Vick would've shied away from. When I purchased him as a way to show my girlfriend how domesticated she could make me and brought him home - back to my dump of an apartment - I vowed to treat him like family. And, for the first week or 2 I did just that; feeding him and rubbing him behind the ears at least twice a week.

Jordan has been a mainstay in our family, even getting his own Christmas stocking and a food bowl. He's already outlasted another cat, the Misses, who passed on last year when her body gave way to some sort of cancer or starvation - the vet wasn't sure. Jordan likes us, I'm pretty sure, even though we've ignored the advice of his Vet to fix his cavity-filled teeth, get him medicine for his many cuts, and stop buying his food at Kwik Trip. Hey, it's $2 for a large box and the kitty on the box seems happy as all get out.

I know he likes me because he sleeps on my head at night. Sara thinks he's trying to suffocate me, as he sleeps with most of his body weight on my mouth, but I keep insisting he's only trying to keep me warm.

In the past month or so, he seems to really be heading for that proverbial "hole in the gravel pit behind our Apple Valley House which I've already started to dig". He's stopped covering his own shit, leaving that for his younger sister of a cat, the Misses 2, to cover up. He's got some blood in his stool, which is probably just hemorrhoids or something benign. He's coughing up weird hair balls which don't have as much hair as before and seem to be made up of blood and stomach tissue. He's not eating well. I've tried to up his intake by feeding him a couple times a week, but he doesn't seem to want it.

When he goes, it's going to be sad. Not so much for me, but for him, as he'll be going through a lot of pain and won't be able to convey, at least in human form, what I could do to help him through it. "Meow, meow, meow," he'll whine, pleading with me to mercifully end his life, but I won't get it. I'll assume he's thanking me for leaving him alone all these years. I'm going to do what I think is best for him and let him decay slowly, as I know he wants to enjoy all the minutes he has left in this world, and when he really starts to fade away and smell like hell, I'll grant him his one last wish and throw him outside, to hunt, gather, and rot away in peace - for a few weeks on his own.

Good luck, Jordan... you'll need it.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Halloween Thanks

HUGE "thanks" to all of you - and there were a lot - who showed up Friday night at Tiffany's for our "Halloween" show! We had an absolute BLAST and couldn't have had as much fun without each of you.

Congrats to Matt "Harry Carey" Wanger on 1st place in the costume contest. Loved it!

Thanks to Jessica for her awesome job on Livin' on a Prayer - GREAT voice!!

We'll have some new photos on-line tonight, so check soon.

We'll be back at Tiff's soon, so stay posted. We're in Rochester on the 17th, Decoys and Tav on the Ave in December.


PS> Hey, Dave - it's ALL A JOKE, so relax... JEEZ!!!

Friday, November 2, 2007

"Shots" Through the Heart and Your to Blame...

Hello all - BIG show tonight! We're expecting a large turnout and are looking forward to giving you a show to remember. Get there around 8:30...

Remember now, we like shots - not Drummer Dave though, so don't bother - and if you're going to buy us some tasty buzz-inducers, please make them really drinkable; kamikazes, lemon-drops, scooby snacks. In the past I've had a some very appreciative fans drop off some Cuervo and the effects of said shots were not positive - both in what they did to my vocal chords and in what they did to my legs (it wouldn't be fun to watch me sing laying down, would it?).

So, in recap:
  1. BIG show tonight at Tiffany's Sports Lounge in Highland Park - Ford Parkway
  2. We want you there
  3. We like shots, but nothing too manly (hey, we admit it)
  4. Laura Van has diarrhea

See you at 8:30-ish...

PS> We will have some bad ass shirts on sale, so check 'em out!!! The shirts I'll be wearing will be for sale at future shows, so be patient (you're going to love them).

Thursday, November 1, 2007


Couple 'o comments and thoughts on this day before our HUGE Tiff's show (again, tomorrow night in Highland park at Tiffany's Sports lounge at 9PM):

1. Halloween: The official cut-off age for going out and trick-or-treating is 12. No "ifs" "ands" or "buts". I don't care if you're 18, but look 9, stop. I had a slew of high school "punks" come through last night, without costumes, and they had the gall to actually bitch about my candy offerings. "Hey, d_ck heads, take your $7-hr pay from Applebees and buy yourself a bag of candy."

2. Hand Sanitation: You've got to be the worst type of human being, you know that? I'm talking about YOU, yeah you... the pathetic bastard who doesn't wash up after using our company bathrooms. I know we tend to discuss bathroom habits a lot on this blog, but this issue simply can not be thrown under the rug. We've actually made it as easy as possible for you -- we've removed any need to turn a faucet on, as it's all done through lasers or something. What, you're too damned lazy to simply place your hands under the sink and let the water wash over them? Really? You have time to look at yourself in the mirror, but not 30 seconds to clean your hands. I say this with all my energy - I HATE YOU. I do. I f-n hate your guts. You are spreading germs, via fecal matter, around the office. Why is it, Sir, that you are always at the communal food dish, be it eating M&M's or Chex Mix? It's amazing. You see people look at you. You're in there, not washing your hands in front of people. You must have the biggest balls out of anyone, ever. Please go. Go away.

3. Parking: OK. I need to address the gentleman who pulled through an open spot today into mine. Let me explain. Our lot at work is HUGE, yet fills quickly everyday. Because we can not build ramps - no clue why not - we are often forced to park, literally, a mile away. Hell, we even have a shuttle bus take us to the door, the lot is so large. When I pulled in today, there were a couple of spots available. These were adjacent to each other - stacked (top to bottom, not next to each other). This dingle-dork pulled through his and parked in mine - facing out. His wasn't good enough, I suppose, so he pulled straight ahead and felt facing forward would help with his get-away at the end of the day. What, is he a freaking bank robber? The thing is, he saw me and didn't even flinch or show remorse. I hate him too. There weren't any other spots nearby, and me wanting to prove a point, I drove all the way around and parked behind him. I then followed him, 2 feet away, the whole way in.

4. Using Checks and Account Balancing: People, checks should be used only for monthly expenses, like bills. That's not really even necessary with direct bill-pay, but fine, if you have to use it, only use it in these cases. DO NOT use it for everyday purchases, such as a bottle of soda, cigarettes, birth control (unless you have to), Tangy Taffy, or anything from a store I happen to be shopping at. Have you seen those Visa commercials? The ones which have the " process flow" grinding to a halt because some schmuck is paying for tennis balls with cash or a check? Also, and this is to EVERYONE... do not balance your account at the register. I can't overstate this. There have been countless times where I've had to share space or wait to be checked out because some chubby-calved soccer mom is knee deep in her checkbook's balance sheet. "Let's see here, $4.35 for a Latte, take that from my total, carry the 4...." SERIOUSLY, we're not all happy with waiting for you to balance your shit.

It's funny -- I'm not negative. OK, I am a bit, but the aforementioned people really should be flown to space and jettisoned out into its vast emptiness.

See you tomorrow - Wear a costume - Drink, don't drive - Have a Blast!!