TricksBlog - December 2013

Dec 31 - Tricks New Year's Eve Party, Hilliards Corner Lounge

Wolowicz NYE tradition (missing Megan) . . . Cold icy weather kept the crowd thin, but we made it warm & cozy
Tricks did our 4th annual Hilliards New Year's Eve party, or was it the 5th? This was the first time that we had a half-full bar (not half-empty). We heard that lots of NYE parties had low attendance in SW Mich this year, with record-breaking low temps. Even the big Grand Rapids event had about one fourth as many people as they expected. We made the best of it. We had some great Tricks friends with us and some local party people, so it was a good enough "regular" night for Hilliards. Just not the mob scene that we've seen at past NYE bashes.
We were glad to have dancers for most every song; that always makes Tricks feel the love. We gotta see some head-banging and shaking out there to make it feel worthwhile. Thanks so much to those who drove from Grandville or Pullman to join us, you know who you are.
At midnight, Rick sang "Auld Lang Syne", with the reminder that we carry the good and bad, happy and sad memories of 2013 in our minds, but what gets carried forward into 2014 is the love in our hearts for our friends and family. With that in mind, Rick sang "What A Wonderful World" by Louis Armstrong, for those who wanted a first slow-dance of 2014. Fran & Tom took the chance to get up onstage and dance with Rick. Since Fran & Tom get the prize for "Best New Tricks Fans" of 2013, we also closed out the night with our first Tricks attempt at Willie Nelson's "On The Road Again", in honor of Fran & Tom who are huge Willie fans.
The Wolowicz family was there at Hilliards for Tricks NYE, fourth year in a row. But this time we were missing the smiling face of their daughter Megan, who is with the Navy in the Mideast right now. We send Megan our love. Hopefully we'll have some kind of Tricks party for Megan when she gets back home after graduating Naval Academy next September.
Thanks to Eric, thanks to the staff, thanks to everyone who came out to bring in 2014 with Tricks. Thank you dancers!
Now Tricks goes into the basement to beef up our repertoire by learning new classics and by bringing back some faves from the Tricks Graveyard.
New Year's "2014" Eve,

Dec 27 & 28 - Rick's 60th Surprise on Friday, and last Saturday of 2013 - weekend 2 of 2

No Tricks Friday, but a big party anyway . . . Rick feeling the love . . . Saturday was a good Tricks night
Tricks final weekend of 2013. Friday, no band, but instead a big surprise party for Rick's 60th. Saturday was a very cool night, check out the pics. Lots of wild 20-somethings head-banging to the tight sounds of Tricks. Saturday we also had some close friends show up for our final night; our pals Tammi & Skip (drummer of the band Raker and our own Band X), all the way from North G.R., Rick's guitar student Ben and his mom and brother, reps from the Hudsonville Tricks Fan Club; Craig & Jane, our family die-hards Paula and Mark, Linda & Dave from our R&K Rhino's Fridays, our newest Tricks fans Fran & Tom, Darcy & Doug Dreyer from Borculo, and our most loyal fan Carol and her friends. We also were visited by Allegan's most famous drummer, Donny Brown of 4-Wheel Drive fame. Quite a nice send-off for our last weekend bar night of 2013. Thanks for coming out, everyone. It was a blast.
But, enough about Saturday. Let's talk about Friday. Eric the owner did not want a band on the Friday right after Christmas, so we had the night off. Cool, because Friday Dec 27 was Rick's 60th birthday. Let me give you my first-person narration:
A few days ago, Krystal said, "what do you want to do on your birthday? Do you want to go out to dinner somewhere or something? Maybe invite a few people?" Not the type to care about social gatherings (unless there's music involved), I said, "sure, whatever you want to plan". (I didn't know how relieved Krys was at my answer, because she had been planning and inviting people and coordinating party plans for nearly two months.) Friday morning, Krys said the plan was set for meeting at Uccello's in Grandville, with about six friends. Around noon I said, "why don't we go early and stop at Best Buy", to pick up the Christmas and Birthday gifts we were planning on buying with our gift money. I thought it was strange that Krys was resisting the idea of shopping. I never saw that before. It should have raised a red flag. But I never knew Krys to be conniving or plotting, one thing I love about her is what you see is what you get. So, we went back and forth about the shopping thing, and I eventually said, "you obviously don't want to go early to shop, so fine, I can probably get this stuff online for a lower price anyway".
You see, she knew I was going to get some money and some Amazon gift cards, and she didn't want me jumping the gun on deciding what I wanted to buy. (The main thing I had my eye on was an Alesis PercPad, which is an electronic drum to add a variety of sounds to our Rick & Krys acoustic shows.
) Krys timed this all perfectly. She had gone away on Thursday night, supposedly to visit friends and bring them my Christmas banana bread and carmel corn. In actuality, she took her friend Karen to go decorate the Hilliards bar.
As we're leaving the house to "go to Uccello's", Krys pretended to get a call from our friend Dylan, and she said, "we need to pick up Dylan at Hilliards". Okay.
When we got to Hilliards the parking lot was packed, but that's pretty normal for Friday at dinner time. Krys said, "wow, this is your party". I thought she was joking and I laughed. She said, "look at the sign." The sign said, "Happy Birthday Rick" and "Tricks Sat". I figured that the sign was there because Tricks was playing Saturday night, and someone got Eric to add the birthday greeting. I said, "I wonder where Dylan is". Krys was laughing and said, "just park the car, we're going in". I still thought that we were maybe going to pick up more than just Dylan to go to Uccello's. Maybe another carload meeting us there at Hilliards.
So, imagine my shock when I walked in to a bar packed full of a hundred familiar faces and balloons on the tables and everyone cheering. I've always told everyone "I never had a real birthday party, because my birthday was too close to Christmas." I went to other kids' bday parties, but never had much of a party of my own. My birthday "party" was always combined with Christmas parties. A funny thing to hear from Krys afterwards was how she had to tell my mom, "no, we're not going to combine it with the Dutkiewicz Christmas party, that's the whole point of this special party."

This is right after walking in, shock! ... Neighbor Pete wrote a poem ... Opening gifts & cards with 3 granddaughters
Krys says 120 friends and family were invited, and she can only think of about 5 people who didn't show up. She told Eric to expect 60, and Krys said the head count was near 100. From Krystal's devious and masterful planning of this amazing once-in-a-lifetime event for little ol' me, I have to say, "the saying is 'you can't bullshit a bullshitter', but evidently you can". I was completely stunned and surprised and happy.
I was so overwhelmed with all the love. I'm normally not a very social person. Everyone is used to seeing me in "band mode", when I'm all serious about keeping the band show running smoothly and lively. One thing that really bowled me over was the eclectic crowd; people from all the corners of my life. I'm used to seeing them in separate groups, but not all together like that, and in my honor. I just have to say, "thank you so much to everyone". Words can't express my joy.
Special thanks to Dave DeHaan for providing excellent guitar music for our party. Everyone loved it, I could go on and on about Dave's music. Great touch from Krys for adding live acoustic music to my party. Loved it!

Being a list person, I have to list those who were there from all various categories of my life. Sorry if I miss anyone. I know each category has people who couldn't be there for various reasons. Much love to you whether you were there in person or in spirit.
• My family of origin - Rusty, my mom, My brothers Steve with wife Tammy & Larry with wife Ali, my sisters Cathy with husband Ron & Paula with husband Mark.
• My kids - My son Jeremy with wife Gerah. My son Dan with wife Jackie.
• My grandkids - Kyra & Niko. Collin, Ava, & Clara.
• Krystal's family - Sister Jen with husband Mark. Brother Bob with daughter Kara
• My Tricks band - Krys of course, Ozzy, Steve, Dave
• Former band mates and musical pals - Dale Boysen & friend Jan, Greg Howard, Tom Northrup & friend Katie
• Tricks band "inner circle" fans/friends (including Krystal's infamous "dancing girlfriends")- Craig & Jane, Deb & Bill, Liz & Sam, Roger, Dylan, Lois, Tom Lademan with wife Cindy and daughter Kennedy, Jamee & Rob, Karen (thanks for helping decorate), Dina & Jon, Deb & Ed, Judith & Dave with kids Dan & Iris, Chuck & Jen, Rhonda & Todd, Linda & Shane.
• Trendway work pals - Larry Nichols with wife Ginny. Doug Dreyer with wife Darcy, Heather Maloley with husband Matt and kids Wilhem, Ella, & Alex.
• Party neighbors - Lex & Pete, Jim & Sue with son, Grace with daughter Olivia, Keith & Sheila, Fred & Toni
One of my best pals from St. Joseph's Seminary (highschool) - Jim Blanchard with wife Cheryl
Friday, Dec 27, 2013 - Rick 60th Surprise Party

Dec 20 & 21 - Tricks at Hilliards Corner Lounge, weekend 1 of 2

Friends and Family fun time . . . . . . The band occupies the dance floor . . . . . B-day on Saturday
Tricks is finishing up 2013 at good ol' Hilliards Corners. We have this weekend, then a solitary Saturday on Dec 28, and finally New Year's Eve on Tuesday night. Eric the owner has the good sense to throw a simple NYE party with no cover charge, no early dinner. The only added frills are the champagne toast at midnight and party favors, i.e., your traditional noise-makers and little party hats. The kitchen stays open for dinner later than usual, and there are munchies available up until closing time.
This final full weekend saw a terrible ice-storm both Friday and Saturday. And the crowds stayed away in droves. We had some family and friends show up both nights, but the regular bar-hoppers and head-bangers were mostly absent. The band was extra tight on Friday night, and that fire was helped along by some guys who came straight from the Williams Tooling holiday party. There was quite a big crowd of 20-somethings on Friday, but they mostly were hanging out around the bar, chit-chatting. Tis the season for socializing. We can't complain - we're the same way. But, we had precious few dancers this Fri & Sat.
Saturday, the icy roads were even worse than Friday. The bar normaly has a good dinner crowd there when we arrive. But not this Saturday. There might have been 20 people there when we started first set. Mostly a birthday party that hung around and even danced a little. But the road conditions scared most everyone into going home early. Shortly after midnight, we lost power to the entire bar. We thought for sure that the power lines were knocked down by icy tree branches. But, the power came right back on after 20 seconds or so. By that time, there were only about six people left sitting at the bar. Steve had to call Dick's Market to check with the night crew, to see if the refrigeration all came back on okay. He couldn't get anyone on the phone, so the band decided to let him go, and we called it a night. It was a long slow scary ride home. As the saying goes: "That's show Biz!"
Thanks Dan for coming out with your buds. Thanks Roger, Carol, Kriss & Chris, Craig & Jane, Rhonda & Todd, and thanks to everyone else who braved the nasty roads to come for our last full Tricks weekend. Thanks to Eric and the staff for being cool as usual. We love this bar.
Fri | Sat

Dec 13 & 14 - Tricks at Dorr Moose, with Dorr Business Association party on Saturday

Friday fun with David's b-day party ... Drawing prizes for Saturday's party ... Business people party crowd
Tricks only 2013 appearance at the Dorr Moose. Friday was the regular member crowd. We had fun with David's birthday party getting a bit wild. But Tricks went home one hour early because the nasty weather made everyone get home early.
Saturday was the annual Dorr Business Association holiday party, with dinner and big door prizes - so we had a good crowd. Not as enthusiastic on the dance floor as they were last year. We might duck out of this one for next year, but who knows? We still had a great time. Very cold and snowy, icy weather didn't help. People were looking at their watches, and most of the crowd disappeared soon after the big door prizes were handed out. We had a fun time with the remaining party for Bob and Rick's birthdays.
Tricks Drummer Steve is owner of Dick's Market in Dorr, and President of the DBA. Steve speaks:
Thanks to the DBA Christmas Party Committee
Melodie Niemczyk, Pat Staley, Amber Snyder and their helpers from United Bank & Chemical Bank.
Congratulations to Tom & Carlene Cooke - winners of the Grand Prize 50 inch HDTV. 
Dorr Township Hall of Fame newest member Tammy VanHaitsma for her good work on the Township Board. Especially for her 4 years as Supervisor when against all odds and many critics she (as I am fond of stating it), pulled Dorr kicking and screaming into the 21st century by finally having city sewer installed along with 142nd road construction that changed the face of Dorr with curbs, streetlamps, and other streetscaping additions.
Thanks to LaMeyer's & Brummels for keeping the award a secret while inviting the VanHaitsma's as their guests.
Thanks again Moose Lodge for use of the facility for free.

Fri | Sat Dorr Biz Party

Dec 7 - Tricks Lite at Karan & Dan's Wedding Reception, Allegan

One heck of a dance party . . . . The kids had the time of their lives . . . Tricks Lite in action
Tricks doesn't play in church basements very often, much less Catholic church basements. But, we got called into action for Karen & Dan's wedding reception dance party. Karen is one of the group Rick likes to call "Krystal's Dancing Girls" that show up at many Tricks events. And the whole gang was there for this wedding, with dancing kids as well.
Karen does day-care for Rick & Krystal's grandkids, Kyra & Niko - so they were there too. The next day, we got a message from their mom, Gerah;
I think it was one of the best nights of niko's life!". Those kids were dancing and air-guitar playing all night long.
Rick & Krys sang a few love songs to start off the cocktail hour, then after dinner Tricks kicked it into action. After a couple slow-dance songs for the bride & groom and their family, Karen the bride declared, "No More Slow Songs". She wanted to dance with her girlfriends. So, Tricks played our best dancing tunes, and the dancefloor was packed for the entire time.
The next day, we got a message from Karen, saying:
"Hey Rick,  The band was awesome. We had dancers from 4-86 years old!!  Special thanks to Judy for the beautiful decorations and to our family and friends for making everything perfect.  We had the best time ever.  I've been smiling all day:)  Thankyou so much."
All we can add to that is, "Tricks is always honored when we get to play music for a special family & friends event. And this one was Extra special because it was for our good friend Karen. We love you and wish the best for you and Dan. See you again soon, I'm sure.
Saturday Wedding, Allegan

TricksBlog - November 2013

Nov 27, 29, 30 - Thanksgiving Weekend at Wayland Hotel, Wayland

Thanksgiving Eve was wild . . . . . . . . . . Friday was wilder . . . . . . . . . Saturday was milder
Tricks has played Thanksgiving weekend at the Wayland Hotel for about 10 years. We never know quite what to expect on this big holiday weekend. Thanksgiving Eve is usually a big party night, but not always. And then you have Black Friday, where sometimes the crowds slack off because everyone is tired from all the eating and shopping the past couple days. And Saturday everyone is even more tired, so you never can predict. Well, here's what happened this year.
Wednesday, Thanksgiving Eve is famous for being a big chit-chat night. People are home for the holidays and there are reunions with friends and family happening. You can't expect the band to be the center of attention, when people have catching up to do with each other. But, this year's Thanksgiving Eve turned out to be a big dance night, with people hanging and banging up close with Tricks. Plenty of tables filled with family and friends, but lots of dancers on the dance floor as well.
Friday we really expected a slump in crowd quantity and quality, but we were very pleasantly surprised. Friday's crowd was just as big as Wednesday's, but I have to say that Friday's crowd was much wilder and noisy. There seemed to be lots of guys there who wanted to head-bang and get into the band. You'll see in the pics that there are guys sometimes dancing alone or with other guys, just out there on the dance floor to get into the live music and get into Steve's face. Jeff was our cowbell player for about two hours straight - very fun, very funny, but I'm glad the cowbell wasn't miked up.
Saturday was our final night at Wayland Hotel for 2013. Kind of anti-climactic, with a medium-sized crowd that wasn't much interested in dancing. So, guess who got to do all the work? Unless you're in a band, you don't understand the energy drain it is to play in front of an unenthused crowd. Sometimes it's funner playing to an empty bar, because then there is no stress about persuading drinkers to get out and dance with us. Although, we did have fun with Sara's birthday party group. Happy birthday, Sara. Thanks for bringing your party to the Hotel with Tricks.
We understand that people need to sit and talk, even though we constantly talk here about dance-floor action. When I go see a bar band, I just want to watch the band, not dance. So, I can't say I practice what I preach. Although it may seem weird to some onlookers, one of my favorite things to see is guys or girls dancing all alone. They have that "I don't care, I just wanna dance to the live music".
Time to give thanks: Thanks to our newer fans who come up and talk to us and let us know their thoughts about the band. Thanks to our regular friends, fans, and family - you keep Tricks going! Thanks to the dancers and screamers - you get us fired up! Thanks to the great Wayland Hotel wait-staff for keeping the party going - we really appreciate you; while you're watching everyone else having fun, you have to work (we know the feeling, somewhat). Thanks to Josh the owner for hiring us. We'll see you next year, 2014.

Nov 24 - Annual Benefit Party at Dorr American Legion, Dorr

. . . . . Drinking a bit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Prize Winning a bit . . . . .. . . . .Dancing with the girls a bit
Report from Steve:
The 15th annual Harvest Party brought the Dorr Legion Post to life on a cold night in November. Thanks to everyone that came and helped us rock the place. The Ladies Auxiliary & Sons of American Legion (S.A.L.) jointly host this annual affair which is also a reward to ourselves for all our volunteer work throughout the year.
The only pure rocking, drinking, eating, dancing, & yacking event at our little Club drew a paid attendance of 50 people. That’s enough to pay the bands gracious low price and cover the food expense. That leaves the raffles and 50/50’s as great fundraiser for our Veterans.
Thanks to Jim Benton owner of A Sportsman’s Attic in Wayland
who used his clout to secure a great deal on a great gun for our fall raffle.
The Bone Collector Muzzleloader proved to be of great interest to any hunter our raffle ticket sales-volunteers solicited. With a retail value of nearly $800.00, Jim sold it to the Legion for only $500.00. The 350 tickets sold out before the drawing at 10:00pm. Top ticket sales award goes to S.A.L. Commander Dave “Guena” Bluhm who sold nearly half of all the tickets printed. Runner-up is Sue Dever who sold 75 tickets.
Mark Jenkins of Allegan was the lucky winner of the Triumph Bone Collector gun. The ticket was drawn by none other than John Bosscher, Tricks bassist and Navy Veteran.
Bonnie Berghorst won the Auxiliary Harvest Basket. Bonnie has served as the Auxiliary President the last several years for Post 127.
50/50 winners: Sandy "Wipe Out” Chachulski and Vern Berghorst.
Congratulations to all our lucky winners!
Kudos to the Harvest Party Staff: Tammy, Sherry, Vicky, Deb, Bonnie, Guena, Steve, & Greg.
Extra special personal thanks from Steve as S.A.L. Adjutant to the Tricks band members who have played at this event 14 out of the 15 years for very little pay and who hardly complained at all when I asked them to sweep the floor and set up the tables and chairs after our 1? hours of packing up on Sunday. What a group of troopers!

Nov 15 & 16 - M-89 Sportsbar, Otsego

Best Friday performance of 2013 . . . Saturday Bachelorette Action . . . What happens at M89 stays at M89
The room ambience at M89 is super good for live loud music. There's not a lot of hard surfaces to reflect sound and make it annoyingly hard on human ears. That great ambience not only makes it very comfortable for the band onstage, but it makes it easier to carry on a conversation while sitting at the tables with the band cranking nice and loud.
It seemed like Friday was the best Tricks performance of 2013 - tight, energetic, and just plain fun. Steve took us to the edge with some aggressive drumming, but he stayed tightly in the pocket. And when the drummer is playing like that, it makes the whole band come together with similar tightness and punchy dynamics.
Friday was highlighted by Larry's birthday and Kara's birthday. Thanks for bringing your parties to M89 with Tricks.
Saturday's main event was our friend Karen's bachelorette party. There were about a dozen girls there with Karen, all of Krystal's inner circle of friends who get together often for physical work-outs like hiking, kayaking, dancing, x-country skiing, and most of all, wine-drinking. Husbands were told that it was a girl event, but a few still showed up. Tom Lademan came in with a dress on, walked up to the microphone and announced, "they told me I couldn't come unless I wore a dress". What a wild and crazy guy. Anyway, those girls danced for three sets, and then they had to leave for a hot-tub post-party. Krystal left with the bachelorette party at 12:30, and so that left Rick, Ozzy, & Steve to do last set "boys only". The boys kicked butt, even without Krystal, if I do say so myself.
Thanks so much to all of our friends who came over to Otsego to party with Tricks. Thank you dancers! Thanks to Tim & Linda and their hard-working bartenders and wait-staff. We really love playing at M89 thanks to the cozy feeling and great sound and friendly crowds. We really feel the love. We should have been playing here years ago, right?
Fri |Sat

Nov 8 & 9 - River City Rocks, Grand Rapids

New and old Tricks fans . . . Lots of great "mirror dancing" action . . . Dave & Debbie in da house!
Only Tricks' third appearance at River City. One thing I hear about River City is that they always have great bands there. So, we're feeling honored to be included in their roster of bands.
Both Friday and Saturday were well-attended. Friday's crowd thinned out after midnight, but we still had a few dancers for every single song. We hate playing to an empty dancefloor. Well, maybe "hate" is too strong of a word to use. Let's just say we always prefer to see some dancing action while we are jamming onstage - whether it's two dancers or twenty dancers, it energizes us and makes us feel like we have to bring our "A" game. Bring it!
On Saturday we had a couple special events. One was a birthday for Amelie; we did our obligatory Beatles "Birthday" song. That was mighty fun. The other event was a meet-up with Dave & Debbie Trierweiler, along with some of our band friends from a few different bands. We're planning a big fundraiser for the Bassbeast family on Jun 25 at Lincoln Country Club. Dave has some major health problems, and like we hear too often these days, his employer and his insurance have managed to run off in the other direction. So, we're helping get some $$ together for family expenses and medical bills. This meeting was mostly a social get-together and we didn't get much planning done. At least we planned on having another planning meeting very soon, without all the rock bar distractions and noise. The Facebook event page for the Bassbeast Benefit Bash is right here:
Please RSVP. If you have any items to donate for our raffle ("theme" gift baskets are a great idea), please Email us here , or call Rick at 269-760-5587.
I have to mention that we got Skip Herrema up to play drums during last set, for the Cream / Robert Johnson song, "Crossroads". Skip is an alumnus of Bassbeast's "Meanstreak" band, and also is a founding member of "Shovel" and our own "Band X". He doesn't like us to ask him to drum when he's been drinking, but we couldn't resist. Thanks, Skip, it was fun jamming with you.
Thanks so much to friends, fans, and family who came out to support Tricks at this great new Tricks venue. We're talking with Bob the owner about several 2014 gigs. Thanks to Bob for hiring us; we love this bar. Thanks to Mike the bartender and the friendly, good-looking wait staff. Thanks to the dancers (River City has a huge mirror covering one side of the dance floor, so dancers have fun watching themselves in the mirror). Thanks to everyone for suppporting live local music. We can't do it without you. Looking forward to lots more fun here at River City Rocks in 2014.
Fri |Sat

TricksBlog - October 2013

Oct 25 & 26 - AJ's Grill & Cocktailz, Dorr

Friday was fun . . . . . . . . . . . . . . and Saturday was funner-est. . . . . Saturday's Costume party Winners
Dorr is the capital city of Tricks Country. Steve & Rick cut their rock and roll teeth in various basements and garages around Dorr. And we played many an impromptu party on weekend nights back when we were teenagers. So, we always hear about the memories when we play here in downtown Dorr. This weekend was one more good time to make new fun memories to talk about in years to come.
Friday was an exceptionally good night for a Friday. We had more than enough beer-drinkers and hell-raisers to have a great Tricks party. Part of Friday's fun was a birthday party for Alicia (sp?). And then there was Saturday.
Saturday was the costume party for an early Halloween, since this year Halloween is on Thursday, and it really doesn't work having a Halloween party after the date has passed. At the beginning of the night, it looked like not much going on for costume action, except for the excellent costumes by the staff and band. The bartenders and waitresses were dressed up all cute and sexy. The Tricks boys; Steve, Ozzy, & Rick were dressed and painted up ghoulishly, and Krystal was dressed like a pop star. By 11:30, in time for the costume contest, we had quite a few costumes show up. See the photos for costume views. 1st prize was $100 to "Nerd Boy", 2nd place was $50 to "Creepy Jason Dude", and 3rd was $25 to "Transvestite Prostitute". What a blast! The crowd was great, and Tricks rose to the occassion by rocking them hard and heavy, tight and aggressive. I gotta call "Party of the Year" for Tricks 2013.
Thanks to friends, fans, and family who showed up for a rocking good weekend with Tricks. We love ya! Next time, more costumes, okay? Thanks to everyone who took the trouble to get some kind of costume together to add to the crazy fun. Congrats to the three cash winners; great job playing up your costume role - the Nerd Boy was making everyone laugh with his goofy antics, and the Creepy Jason Dude was creeping everyone out by just standing still at the side of the dance floor. Thanks dancers. Thanks to Amanda and her beautiful staff - looking good. And thanks to Ernie for continuing improvements at AJ's; I can't wait to do some Doogie acoustic tunes on the new back patio next spring.
Fri |Sat

Oct 11 & 12 - Hilliards Corner Lounge, Hilliards

Friday was a small party . . . Saturday we had several big parties . . . including a busload of bachelorette party girls
Tricks at the Corner for one weekend only. Friday turned out to be a very slow night, due to the super nice weather and lots of high-school football games and home-comings. But Saturday more than made up for the slow Friday. Saturday was a big fun crowd, with dancing all night long. Lots of party groups, including a big busload of Bachelorette party girls on the Corn Maze bus. Glad to see all those dancers. It makes all the work worthwhile. Thanks for supporting local Live Music. The band was good both nights, giving up our "A" game whether the bar is empty or full.
Thanks so much to all our friends who came out to hang and bang with Tricks. You gotta love that big dance floor. Always a blast! Thanks to Eric and the great staff. You are the best and the prettiest. You know it! (Yes, I'm talking about Eric.)
You know, it's not too early to mark your calendar for New Year's Eve at the Corner with Tricks. It's the traditional "no cover" NYE party; Tricks is a cheap date. So write that down. We'll be here in Hilliards to ring in 2014 with you. Gotta Love it!
Fri |Sat

TricksBlog - September 2013

Sept 27 & 28 - Wayland Hotel Bar & Grill, Wayland

Friday's big chatting crowd . . . Saturday more like a Tricks crowd . . . Lots of dancing, hooting, and hollering
Our 3rd Tricks weekend at Wayland Hotel for 2013. Friday night's scene was a big 21st birthday party, with a bunch of 20-somethings standing around the bar and pool tables. Good-sized crowd for most of the night, but not a Tricks crowd. There was very little dancing, very little applause for our dramatic song endings, and very little interaction with the band. Tricks was the background music for what Steve calls "a chit-chat crowd".
Saturday was something completely different. We started the night with a bachelor party of 20-something guys. Only this crowd was all into the band. Before we had our guitars unpacked, they were asking, "what songs are you gonna play?", "are you ready to rock?", "can you plug in your guitar and play a loud guitar solo?, and so on. They were a wild bunch. And they stood on the dancefloor headbanging and having fun for the entire first set. They didn't care about chit-chatting, they wanted to get down rock and roll style. See the Saturday pics. It was nothing but laughing and dancing fun. A complete contrast to Friday's passive crowd.
Tricks is only at the Wayland Hotel one more weekend in 2013, that would be Thanksgiving weekend. New owner Josh is not in love with Tricks as much as Mary Kay used to be, so no more double weekends. And we're playing at the Hotel less and less, as we find plenty of new venues to explore. Thanks to our friends and family who came out on Saturday. Thanks to the Friday night birthday bunch, thanks for bringing your party to the Hotel with Tricks. Thanks to Josh for hiring us.

Fri |Sat

Sept 13 & 14 - The Dock at Bayview, Richland

Doing shots on Friday night . . . Dancing and head-banging on Saturday night . . . with Tricks in charge
Another debut weekend, it was our first Tricks weekend at The Dock at Bayview, overlooking Gull lake, 3 miles east of Richland on M-89. This place was recently bought by Jennifer, the former manager of Rhino's, with help from her dad. Krystal and Rick have played many a fun Friday night at Rhino's in Plainwell over the past few years, and Jennifer always asked if we could get our band to play at Rhino's. We always had to say, "no, Tricks is too big and loud for Rhino's". But, now that Jennifer has a big restaurant / bar in Richland, she immediately called Rick to get a booking date with Tricks. This September weekend was the only one we had open for Jennifer, so we took it. We had high hopes for the Dock at Bayview, even though Jennifer told us that business has been relatively slow (like it's been a bit slow almost everywhere in this economy). The Dock at Bayview is a great-sounding room, and they have a huge dancefloor, and good food. And they've had good bands playing here for many years under the previous name, "Bayview Gardens".
This weekend was another one of those studies in opposites. Friday had a good dinner crowd, and gradually the place emptied out until there were about twenty people left at the bar doing shots and having fun. Not much action on the big dancefloor, so the band was a bit disappointed with our first night, even though we got plenty of compliments and friendly banter from the people who were there. We're not used to such a shy crowd.
Saturday was a different story. Lots of happy faces and crazy dancers, with lots of hooting and hollering and head-banging, ... more like a regular Tricks crowd. Again, we got lots of great compliments and everyone was asking when Tricks would be back here. See the pictures for the rest of the story.
Thanks to our friends who came out to support us. Notable musician friends in attendance were Dale Boysen and Tom Northrup. Thanks so much to Jennifer and her great crew. We hope to be back for a few weekends in 2014.

Fri |Sat

Sept 6 & 7 - Log Cabin, Grand Rapids

Two nights of party fun at the LC ... Rick's reunion with High School pals ... Tricks fans & friends came to dance
Tricks has to bring their A Game when we play in Grand Rapids, especially at the Log Cabin where they have lots of great hard-rocking bands. Our first 2013 at the Log Cabin was during Memorial Day weekend, and the crowds were mighty thin. This time around it was a much better showing. But we're told by the regulars that winter time is when the best crowds show up to drink and dance at the LC. Owner Matt Potter runs a tight ship, but is a hands-off kind of boss. We really like the way Matt keeps the Log Cabin looking good with a recently remodeled stage and dance floor area. Not every bar owner puts money back into their bar's upkeep. Tricks appreciates the 110% effort, so we try to match that in our show. We have the sore bones on Sunday to show for it.
Friday was a smaller crowd than Sat, and we forgot our camera. The few pics we got were from Krystal's iPhone. Not the greatest for indoor shots. Anyway, Matt likes us to "bring it" right from the start, so we dump the acoustic songs that we usually start our first couple sets with (most venues with food like it when we start nice and easy for their lingering dinner crowd). We started right in Friday night with some hard rocking Foghat and Foreigner, and onward and upward from there. We got plenty of dancing action for the entire night.
BTW, Tricks says "welcome back, we missed you and we need you" to Dave our soundman, who has been in and out of the hospital this summer with some GI problems. Hope you continue recovering as quickly as possible, Dave. It's been a crappy summer without you. We miss having someone to blame everything on, you know.
Saturday was more like the crowd we were looking for. Just about a packed house, and tons of dancers and people interacting with the band. Lots of Tricks regulars came out to support us. That warms our hearts. The famous drummer Bill Roelofs was there for a birthday toast. We had Tricks alumnus Dave "BassBeast" Trierweiler (also of Meanstreak fame) in da house, with his beautiful wife Debbie "Mrs BassBeast". Most notable mention had to be Rick's pals from high school, who he hasn't seen in many years. I'm not talking about just any old high school, we're talking about St. Joseph's Seminary, the Grand Rapids Catholic Diocese priest factory. Rick and his friends Larry, Mike, and Jim didn't turn out to be priest material, sad to say.
Thanks so much to our family, friends, and fans for supporting your local rock and roll music scene, and our little old band, Tricks. Thanks to the birthday party people who brought their party to the LC with Tricks. Thanks to the locals for the great positive feedback. Thanks to Roger for taking pictures. Thanks to owner Matt and his great-looking and hard-working staff for serving it up right for the demanding crowds of party people. We look forward to getting some dates at the LC for 2014.
Fri |Sat

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