It was the best of times and the worst of times…remember that one?
This time out however we’re talking about Saturday’s Rainmakers show at Knuckleheads in the East Bottoms, not the French Revolution. And while it was clearly the age of foolishness, it was hardly the age of wisdom.
Not according to the Kansas City-bred, Chicago shock jock Erich "Mancow" Muller.
"It was fantastic," Mancow says of the show. "I tell you, Bob Walkenhorst‘s hair was gray – which is startling – but they’re still a great band. They’re as good as they were in 1986."
When the Rainmakers took the stage Saturday, Mancow was Johnny on the Spot.
"And the first thing Bob did when he walked out was reach down and shake my hand," Mancow says. "I was front-and-center with my belly against the stage and quite honestly, I was surprised he recognized me."
The story behind the story being that Mancow wrote a column here before the concert discussing issues he’d had with Walkenhorst over the years and speculating that the Rainmakers lead singer’s surley disposition may have cost them the fame and fortune they so richly deserved.
"Towards the end of the show the band played a song Bob wrote about somebody he hates called ‘Like Dogs’ and then he came over afterwards and said, ‘It’s not about you, Mancow.’
"I think we’re going to let bygones be bygones. I mean, we’ve had a contentious relationship."
As for Knuckleheads, it’s now become Mancow’s favorite music venue.
"There’s just something great about that place," Mancow says. "It’s just a powerful venue and a perfect place to see the Rainmakers. As U2 is to Red Rocks, the Rainmakers are to Knuckleheads. I mean, they unbuckled the Bible Belt and let it all hang out.
"The fact is that Knuckleheads is a treat, however the crowd there is not a treat. I’ve traveled the world and when it comes to America, the East Coast has people that are ugly but brilliant. The West Coast has people that are beautiful but stupid. And the crowd at Knuckleheads around midnight is a combination of both – ugly and stupid – at least they’re fat.
"Buddy, it was a great show and I met some really great people. But the majority of people there are just fat dummies – drunk and stupid and dancing and spilling drinks on themselves. The high-fiving motherfuckers that wore their hats backwards in college and are now trying to relive their glory days at Knuckleheads but those days have passed. They’re the same kind of guys who used to put Rohypnol in drinks and rape fat sorority girls while they listened to Jimmy Buffet. That’s the Knuckleheads crowd."
Which brings us to opening act, the Russian-American Red Elvises.
"They may be the single worst band I’ve ever seen in my life and I see two to three bands a week," Mancow says. "But I absolutely love Knuckleheads and I’m flying back for Southern Culture on the Skids (tonight). I saw David Allan Coe there and I’m going to fly back in again for Merle Haggard."
As for the prospect of Knuckleheads attracting a younger crowd, don’t hold your breath, Mancow says.
"Look, I don’t know the owners of Knuckleheads, but their logo is the Three Stooges on Harleys and you’re not going to attract young people with the Three Stooges on Harleys."