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Skip's Party Place, Angola, Indiana


   Pretty Boy's Corner

July 21, 2010
Laurie Morvan Band at Skip's Party Place

If you are anything like me, you look at that name and got to wonder what we are in for. It conjures up all kinds of images in one's mind. It could be a funky-lowdown kind of blues joint or it could be some kind of quirky-but-swanky place. Hmm. More shall be revealed as I like to say.

We check in to the hotel, drop off our bags, and head to Skip's Place. This club turns out to be some kind of funky cool place. It is a bar with a stage in the middle of the room, a pool table to the left of stage, and a second story balcony. The sound system is massive and seems overkill for such a small place. Up on the second floor is another pool table with another bar. There is lots of ample seating upstairs and downstairs where people can see the stage. What really makes Skip's funky cool though is that every square inch of every wall in the place has some kind of old musical instrument hanging from it. There are guitars, basses, banjos, dulcimers, sitars, drums, trumpets, trombones, tubas, ukuleles, banjo-ukes, and lap steels just to name a few. I spent about a half hour wandering around looking at all this stuff. Some of it I wanted to adopt and take home and put back in playing condition just because they looked so interesting.

It turns out that Skip's Place has been around for forty years and it has had some pretty big names in the blues world play in it. Skip is still involved in the club but his son, Steve, helps with the management. All the touring bands, like us, have played there. Some of their photos were on the walls. One that made me laugh out loud was a promo shot with a guy with a seventies hairstyle. The name of his band was the John Good and Plenty band. Sweet. Ooo.

Upon leaving the club to go back and change for the show, Merle, the bartender tells us not to feel too bad if no one is in the place as things have been pretty slow as of late. Not what you want to hear. Any musician will tell you that when no one is in the club you are playing it makes for a very long night. Oh, well. We'll do the best we can.

When we get back to the club we are in for a pleasant surprise. The club has at least fifty people in it and more are coming in. We find some of our old friends like Jim and Kaye, who we met at the Slippery Noodle a number of years ago. Also, many people who heard us in Napoleon, Michigan at T.C.'s Blues Club, like Rolly and his wife are in attendance. Great people. Thanks. You made the night happen. We played from 8 until 12 and everyone seemed to really be enjoying themselves. Kyle, our sound man de jour, did a great job of getting us dialed in and he stayed attentive the entire night making sure that there were no big goofs. Thanks, Kyle.

Back to the hotel at around 1 am and it seems that everyone at Skip's Place is pleased with the job the band did for them. Off to dreamland. We are in Berwyn, Illinois tomorrow night at Fitzgerald's. Good night. Zzzzz.
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