Eugene Weekly : Music : 11.22.07

Have Moustache, Will Party

Think about it. What (or who) comes to mind when you think of moustaches? Child molesters? Some villanous guy who ties women to railroad tracks? Tom Selleck? Why is such a stigma attached to the natural little swath of hair that spontaneously appears above the lips of most full grown men after a day or two of shaving neglect? For five years now, John Henry’s has been hauling the moustache out of the closet and into the spotlight of the Moustache Rally, celebrating with the help of Eugene’s retro-lovin’ musical talent. But with the noninvolvement of founding mastermind Dustin Lanker this year, the stand-alone quality of the rally will be put to the test. Will a reclaiming of all that is fabulous about the moustache be enough to draw the people out of their bloated, post-Thanksgiving hangovers? Can the spirit of the rally survive without its father figure?

Yes, says one of this year’s participants, Sara Scofield, lead songstress of Whopner County Country All-Stars. A die-hard attendee of the rally, she was thrilled when their band was asked to join this year’s lineup, which also includes the SootheSayers and Candy Machine Wrecker.

“It’s totally off the wall. Most of these people only grow moustaches for the rally, so it is really tributing something that is kind of a joke anyway. I think a lot it is that the community wants to come together for something fun and silly and just laugh our asses off. Everybody gets to ham it up,” Scofield says.

John Henry’s co-owner and booking agent Keith Martin reminds Eugene scenesters that the traditions that made the rally legendary survive into the fifth year.

“We’ll still have a lot of the same elements; moustache recognition awards, bands, a slide show [assembled by Ty Connor]. J. Wynn Cronk [right], who hosts our burlesque show, is going to MC. He grew his moustache out for the rally two years ago and just left it. He has a beard now, but he always goes back down to just the moustache for the rally.”

Although attendees aren’t required to look like ’70s porn stars to get in the door, it does knock a dollar off the cover. And those without the time, will or testosterone necessary to sprout a ‘stache are more than welcome to improvise.

“Falsies are welcome,” says Martin. “Sharpies work too.”

The fifth annual Moustache Rally begins at 9 pm Friday, Nov. 23, at John Henry’s. 21+ event. $2 without moustache, $1 with. — Adrienne van der Valk


Actresses, Leotards and Headdresses, Oh My!

Actor turned musician, musician turned actor — the debate over whether or not celebrities can pull off both has raged for years. Elvis Presley did it. From musician to actor and back again, Presley remains renowned for being an all-around entertainer. Can this happen in the present? Actress turned musician Juliette Lewis attempts it with her rock and roll outfit Juliette and The Licks.

You may remember Lewis from her starring roles in The Other Sister and Natural Born Killers, or maybe from one of her supporting parts in Starsky and Hutch or Old School. “My whole little creative juggernaut was comprised of three things: music, performance art and drama,” Lewis says. With Juliette and The Licks, Lewis blends all of these elements to create something truly out of this world.

The Licks’ energetic live show promises to knock your socks off. From Lewis’ headdresses and Viking helmets to her neon aerobic leotards, the visual element will surely be ever present. Attitude and adrenaline pulsate from this firecracker of a frontwoman.

With such a dramatic, famous lead singer, some folks may forget about the band behind her — the ones creating the roll and rock beat she screams and sings over. The Licks themselves definitely posses a rocking sound. No surprise, then, that rock god Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters took residence at the drum kit for Juliette and the Licks’ new album Four on the Floor. Ed Davis, formerly of The Start, takes the stage as the new Licks drummer.

Juliette and the Licks play with Suffrajett and Scissors for Lefty at 9 pm Tuesday, Nov. 27, at the WOW Hall. $13 adv., $15 door. — Anne Pick


Remember These Works

For many bands, making it past the second practice with the original lineup is a feat of endurance. Eugene band Forgotten Works has made it to the second year mark and is celebrating the occasion with an anniversary show at Wandering Goat Coffee House.

Forgotten Works, a duo of Eugeneans David Norem and Dan Reyhle, bills itself as “handcrafted acoustic music.” The toddler-aged band has a grown-up four CDs to its credit: two live CDs, one from the World Café from July 2006 and one from the Downtown Lounge in May of 2006; Last Days, a 6-song EP released in March of 2006; and their first full length, Last Days of Smoke & Thunder, released in April of this year. These guys seem to have no problem writing material, as Smoke & Thunder is 13 tracks totaling more than 66 minutes. Their songs hover between Neil Young-ish jagged-edged folk rockers like “Thousand Points,” which cribs a little lyrically from the master, to the Santana-esque flourishes of jazzy guitar and rhythmic percussion present on “Listen To Life.” There’s even some down-homey bluegrass on “To Your Own Self Be True.”

One of the album’s highlights, the five-minute “Rumi’s Song,” is an instrumental tune displaying Latin-tinged percussive elements. Placed midway through the CD, it’s an airy counterpoint to the lyrical heaviness of the other songs. Norem (guitar) and Reyhle (guitar, mandolin) share singing duties and seem to have a stellar musical camaraderie. On Smoke & Thunder, the instrumentation that the pair doesn’t handle themselves is augmented with Pat Reyhle on percussion and effects and second percussionist Parker Koehn. Here’s to many more multiples of two-year anniversaries for Forgotten Works!

Forgotten Works plays at 8 pm Saturday, Nov. 24, at Wandering Goat Coffee House. Free. — Vanessa Salvia