I posted a long reply to all this the other day, but I must not have submitted it. Dang.
(to Drew) I've been back for a while now. I don't know what you're talking about!
I think Tom jumped ship and moved to the Metairie of Texas: Houston.
Let me be clear that I do not care for or care about the "support the scene" mentality. Why go see a band that's terrible or go to a show that's terrible? It's draining on everyone. But if you have a friend in a band, or a friend putting on a show, especially if it's someone who has consistently shown support for your own projects--then, yeah, please show some support. Saying that I have "thin skin when it comes to attendance" is a gross generalization that does not at all take in the nuances of how I view shows, local bands, attendance, etc. As far as my current issues with people coming or not coming, my biggest issue is with all the people I have supported over the years (Head Pro, Ghostwood, Hatchback, etc. as well as other local promoters) being unapologetically unwilling to show me the same support. Sure, people come to my shows SOMETIMES. When someone important to their social clique has a band playing. But even in those cases, I have to trick them and cajole them into staying for a band who maybe came over from EUROPE or whatever. I have to convince them to stick around for something that they haven't heard that I think they might like. It's a mess.
I still go out to as many ALL AGES shows around the city as I can. Generally, I only miss a show like that if I'm on tour or have my own show the same night. Sure, I've missed plenty of Lovey Dovies, Opposable Thumbs, Adults, etc. shows at Allways or Siberia. My old man sinuses leave me sick for days after when I go to smokey clubs. I also hate and am depressed by bar/drug culture. Those sorts of shows have never really appealed to me, and as I've gotten older, I've found that they're a huge drain on me physically and mentally.
There's a lot wrapped up in the matinees for me that exacerbate my reactions to the poor turnout. This project is basically everything I've been pushing on punk shows for the last 15 years: cross-pollination of local audiences in an attempt to further weaken the structure of social cliques, a platform and benefit for local non-profit organizations and projects, a passive but adequate way of stimulating creativity and musical growth by shaming the bad bands with good bands. When most of the "cheaper" shows these days are in the $6-8 range, the matinees remain $5 and harken back to the Faubourg days even more with a discount to $3 with food or book donations. And even when people just come and hang around outside, that's cool too! That's all I'm really doing at the shows anyway.
The line-up for the matinees changes every week, and the shows can be drastically different stylistically. I'm pretty sure you'll still hear WOOLY BULLY once, twice, thrice, or ten times every month at Mod Night. And if I could even get folks to come out to one of these matinees each month, that would be HUGE.
I also agree that there are two many bands. But I'd rather see a million local bands pop up and fade away than 100 more incompetent or unoriginal touring bands draining communities everywhere. At least locally, there's the opportunity for bands (however bad they are) to give something back and to grow.
I don't expect people to always come out to my shows simply because I'm doing them. That's why I have to tailor the local bands to each show. That's why I had to piss off James and Lovey Dovies when I kicked them off the Pygmy Lush show to add Japanther: because more people will be at the show to see Pygmy Lush if Japanther plays. This is why local bands rarely get paid on my shows. This is why I get on local bands' cases about playing out more than once a month. This is why people joke that I hand them a flyer every time I see them. I'm certainly not sitting around all day farting around and playing slapdick and creating one facebook event and expecting a huge turnout. I'm putting in the work, conning people, haranguing locals for all their foils. But at the end of the night, when I do some show and almost none of the many people who I actively support come out, it can be kind of hard not to take that as a slight, even if it's just a difference of perspective. That my friends don't or can't understand that doing or playing these shows is still important to me and that I would appreciate support every now and then--that's insane to me.
I haven't had a comic book collection since 2003 when mine was destroyed in a flood in Norco.
I read Antigravity.