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:"
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:

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)

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