Tuesday, June 17, 2014

A Plea For Sanity

Ladies and Gentleman, a plea for sanity.

Do we truly believe that these people came to Las Vegas for $0.99 Pabst Blue Ribbon?

Las Vegas City Council wants to “clean up” Fremont Street by restricting, rather specific, alcohol retailers.

At the behest of major gaming concerns, off-sale liquor retailers have been targeted as bringing an unsavory element to Fremont Street.

Many people who frequent Fremont Street choose to purchase their intoxicants from a liquor store rather than inside of a casino, presumably for the savings.

While persons of all income brackets enjoy paying a fair price for consumable goods, those who remain idle in the lowest socio-economic class have no other option than to seek the cheapest retailers.

Council members and controlling interested parties believe that stemming the proliferation of these markets will lead to a reduction in the unsavory element who currently frequent the area.

Meanwhile, the casinos who dominate the region are in the business of creating this epidemic.

A casino’s livelihood relies on it’s ability to completely bankrupt an individual and subsequently kick them out onto the street.

Can we really be so blind?

Can we continue to allow gaming moguls to capitalize on our community’s most vulnerable, reap vast profits, leaving broken individuals in their wake and not hold them accountable?


Casinos themselves should have outreach services, including mental health professionals on their staffs to combat the problem which they create.

If, in fact, the culture of gaming is safe and suitable for 90% or more of the general population and the only a small percentage of those who gamble will become afflicted, then all the more reason for these companies to be required to fund these services.

It is absolutely horrifying, that we as a community allow these giants to flourish, and when it comes time to deal with the carnage that they create, we place the blame on the symptom and not the cause.

These people did not come here for $0.99 Pabst Blue Ribbon.

Furthermore, we have a round table of politicians openly embracing these class war policies.

Consuming alcohol publicly is only legal if one looks good while doing so (and can afford the right drinks).

And now they want to create more indistinguishable laws to incarcerate those who do not fit the profile of who we/they want around in these parts.

It is (sadly, very predictable) madness.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

What is a Haint?

Dear Friends,
You can now pick up a copy of my new book
when you book your next appointment at Hillary Salon.
Call Today (702) 525 1053

A little more than 10 years ago, like Las Vegans often do, my friend Joe was moving back to Las Vegas after a spell in Washington state. Upon his return, he brought with him many tales from life in the North along with keepsakes and treasures from his journey. Among those treasures was a compact disc with multiple artist’s music burned into it.

Joe was eager and pleased to share his newfound love, The Pine Hill Haints.

The Pine Hill Haints had recently performed in Seattle for a room containing many of our friends and had won their praise, mightily.

Naturally aiming to please, I decided I would bring Pine Hill Haints to Las Vegas.

Except it was not that easy.

In the past, I would search online for a favorite band, eventually find a contact email for the band or their record label and then send them an invitation to perform here.

Pretty simple.

However, these fellas who play washtubs, washboards and saws (along with the more traditional guitar, violin, drum and mandolin) come from the rural South and their online presence is virtually non-existent.

One would think that with the rise of Myspace (at the time) there would be SOMEthing out there but there was not.
I persist with very little encouraging results. Eventually, I find a DIY, online magazine that has a review of one of their shows. A funny story actually, ask me about it later, it’s creepy.

At the very end of the article, there was a blurb, “to contact Pine Hill Haints email: thewednesdays@______.com"
That’s strange, but it’s all I got. I sit down and write an email asking if they have ever played in Las Vegas, if they would like to, and if so I will take care of them.

Nothing happens.

It may have been a week, it may have been six months. I am not sure.
Then one sunny day on our way to the Meadows Mall, my phone rings, I answer and a Southern drawl on the other end asks, “Is this Michael Welsh?”

I confirm and he replies, “Hi, this Jamie from the Pine Hill Haints.”
Well, what do you know? This Southern gent still uses the telephone.

I cannot express to you just how eager and excited I became after that phone call.

He gave me the date of August 11th, but (like I always do) I insisted that they play two nights; the obligatory bar show and an all ages show. This is Las Vegas. Our scene is weird, just trust me on this.

And this is how a beautiful friendship was born.

Our scene being what it is, the all ages show fell through and we did a last minute house party in my living room, but the next night (August 11th, 2004) Pine Hill Haints performed inside the Cooler Lounge with Skorchamenza, Over The Line and a short-lived project called LARK.

Ask (current local band) The People’s Whiskey about LARK.

Every year since then, at some random time that I cannot predict, I receive that phone call and every year I attempt to outdo myself in putting on their show, as well as showcase my town for my out-of-town friends in pleasing and interesting new ways.

I may be the only person who cares about this, but the fact is that touring bands, whether DIY or major label, experience a rather predictable routine of sleeping, traveling and performing in venues that are equally predictable.

That’s why I like to shake things up. I have never hosted Pine Hill Haints in the same venue twice. We went from Cooler Lounge to Celebrity Theater to Art Bar, The Deep End, The Aristocrat, house and pool parties to our first hair salon (1104 S 3rd St) and on and on.

You can trust that this show is going to happen, but I am trying something new (yet) again, by not announcing the venue immediately. I can tell you that the forthcoming performance will be somewhere in or near downtown Las Vegas (where we live and play). That is a fairly safe bet.

The truth of the matter is that the venue may change based on public demand.

We have a lot of options and this is one area of expertise where I enjoy getting creative.

Now in their 10th year returning to Las Vegas, I present for your entertainment and delight,

JULY 28, 2014
with special guests Bombón (San Pedro, CA)
If you want to be a part of this year’s magic

Go to: https://www.nevadanearthling.blogspot.com

and purchase your admission using the PayPal button on the page. $11 in advance (using PayPal)

$15 at the door, day of show

You can also pay in cash when you
Yours, Michael(+Hillary)

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Pre-sale "Tickets" Now Available.
JULY 28, 2014
special guests BOMBON
Purchase your admission via PayPal.
When you complete your purchase, your name will be added to the guest list for the event.
further show information, i.e., Venue, Supporting acts, time, etc., will be sent to you via email.
$11 in advance, $15 day of show

Complete your order today and request a song from the band!

This will be the 10th year that Pine Hill Haints have returned to our dusty, western town.

Let us show them the best time that they have ever had, this year.

The Pine Hill Haints "They Tried To Kill My Momma's Son"