Sunday, August 28, 2011

Wash Ave is not just for Urbanites

The little lady and I wanted to go down to the Bluesweek Festival. (Better said, I wanted to go down to Bluesweek and she wanted a good dinner so we did what most couples do, compromise). So the compromise was on and we ended up at Mosaic on Washington Avenue, the hipster downtown place where you can sit on the patio and watch a good show of locals and party goers strutting their stuff. We had and absolutely fabulous dinner served by a great server named Dan. This place has it down. So good to see great execution and food impeccably prepared. Looking forward to the opening of another in Des Peres next month. Heck, I will be back down there before it opens. The damn thing should be open by now, no?

Bluesweek was something that I was involved in last year, providing some support in the green room and concessions. Bluesweek was originally at the foot of the Peabody, the former Kiel Auditorium. The Blues Festival moved to where the National Blues Museum will reside, on 6th and Washington, in front of the Laurel, formerly the Dillards Building,and what is now called the MX District. The district is undergoing major renovations as part of a project to develop the area into a full-service retail, dining, entertainment, arts, culture and residential district along Washington Avenue. The National Blues Museum, another project that I was involved in early on, is getting lift from several events as of late, and it is our towns hope, both city and county I might add, that we achieve what others have failed to do, create an international showpiece for the Blues.

One of our towns best young entrepreneurs, Mike Kociela, of Entertainment St. Louis, put on another good show, pulling together with John May of BB's Blues and Soups, an incredible line up of St. Louis musicians, many of whom play at The Wolf, an entertainment venue centered on bringing the culture from the urban core out to the county. Don't ask me why it works. The Wolf is now a very popular room for all kinds of music. We are fortunate to have pulled that off. I could not have done it without first meeting these musicians at the 1st Bluesweek Festival. Most of the musicians have become my friends. It was fun seeing some of our regular bookings/musicians up on the big stage at Bluesweek. The most incredible performance by Rich McDonough of Rough Grooves. An amazing guitar solo confirmed to the crowd that our local blues performers are world class.

After seeing a couple acts, it was only appropriate to take a rickshaw ride back to our car, down Washington Ave, after a wonderful evening that makes one proud to live in St. Louis. We had a great time in the city and will do it again soon.

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