Monday, October 29, 2007


Click on the image for a larger, clearer version.

I forgot to update this with more info like I said I would. Here's part of the text from the email we sent out to the Stumpers:

We are having a little soirée this coming Saturday, Nov 3rd from around 7:30 until around 10:00 at the Stump, as a way to say thanks to you for helping us survive the first year. It's something of a costume party too, although you are not absolutely required to wear anything other than your normal goofy apparel (some of you I wonder about)...but it is right on the heels of Halloween and so if you do wear something we're going to be taking some pictures throughout the night that will someday become a significant part of the Stumpjack Empire history and when the Stumpjack History Museum is erected and people enter the "One Year Anniversary Party" exhibit you can proudly point to yourself in the framed pictures and say to your great grandkids, "That's me there, kids...yup, that's me in the sexy pirate costume and there's your grampa next to me in the Tarzan get-up!" And of course the kids will go "oooooh...gramms and gramps, we had no idea you were so cool!"). But if I'm the only idiot wearing a costume all night that'll be okay too...

However, if you do come wearing a costume of any kind you will be the recipient of an extra little something special...(bwahahahaaaaaa...evil laugh...). Coffee drinks are on us this night too (of course decaff too, if you need it).

John Will Balsley from Milwaukee (and recently Chicago I guess...where he recorded his first CD) will be performing. He's a singer/songwriter in the old folk and blue tradition, and does some real nice guitar work too. Check out his music at his myspace site here (

Mark it down...Saturday, Nov. 3rd at around 7:30/8:00 pm. Stumpjack Anniversary Party. Bring the attached invitation in, print your name on it, and we'll throw it in a drawing for some cool stuff too.

Be there or live in shame!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Live Music at the Stump this weekend

Saturday night at around 8:00
Kerry Michaels doin' his thang...

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Stumpy on Don's Auto

Here's a cool pic from the home page of Don's Auto in Two Rivers. Our friend, John Hopkins, took the picture of this Hyundai Accent that they have spotlighted on their site in front of Stumpjack when he was in for his daily cup of coffee. There's the sidewalk sign peaking into the picture...they are sure to sell untold thousands of vehicles now! Thanks, John.

If you're looking for a vehicle please check them out...they're good folks.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Derek Pritzl plays the Blues...

This Saturday night at 8:00 Derek Pritzl, of the 3-piece acoustic blues band Casual Steve will be performing at Stumpjack. Casual Steve played at this year's Acoustic Fest and blew everyone away with their sound. Derek plays and sings his own music with a powerful, bluesy vocal...the guy definitely has the sound.

Mark your calendar, tell a few of your friends, and come on down for a beer or java...and listen to some great, original unplugged roadhouse tunes.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Rosalee in Sheboygan last night

Last night I drove over to Paradigm the coffee house in Sheboygan to catch John and MJ again. It was a real treat to be able to just sit and listen and enjoy, without having to work while doing it...and it only made me appreciate the talent these guys have even more. MJ is an excellent guitar player, moving back and forth from 6-string to bass,and occasionally using a cool little gizmo called an Ebow to make some beguiling, haunting sounds. John is also a skilled player, but the thing that really grabs you while watching him is his voice, alternating between lilting, almost fragile sweetness to powerful and deep resonance. He sings with conviction and passion, and a clarity that draws you into the song like a good writer or poet's work should. MJ has a really fine voice as well, and his backup to John on several songs is rather beautiful.

The guys also make a great duo, MJ being more the outgoing "jester" of the two while John appears a bit more reserved, maybe shy even...they have a really nice stage presence together, one that encourages intimacy and directness with the audience. The songs are strong, passionate, fun, sad, melancholy, thoughtful, picturesque. Great stuff...

Thanks again John, thanks MJ...well worth the drive.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

RoMoRev...good Muscatine mojo...

John and MJ played last night to maybe the best Wednesday night crowd we've had at the Stump (Wednesdays are generally the slowest night of the week by far)...I'd say at its peak we had 60-65 people in the house, with others coming and going throughout the night. I walked around and chatted with several folks who told me how much they were digging the music, the drinks (made a few Doodah Smoothies too) and the whole vibe. Here's a few images from my crappy camera (have decided to start saving seriously for a new, good digital...too many of the crowd shots didn't turn out at all).

It was a fun day and a half with John and MJ...good humored, self-effacing and just dang nice guys...we most definitely want to have them back, maybe once or twice a year at least. We were able to get five decently recorded songs too, and we'll be gearing up for putting out a CD soon I hope. My daughter Jesse did a nice job on the video camera and got at least one song recorded nicely (haven't looked at the whole tape yet)...will put that up on here soon too.

The guys said that they had a great time and were pleasantly surprised at the diversity of the crowd we had...young and older, punks and church kids, yuppies and grandmas...nothing new for us, we've always enjoyed a real diverse group of friends and coffee lovers.

Earlier in the afternoon we went over to the Courthouse Pub in Manty for a mighty fine lunch and a couple of tasty microbrews from them (try the "fuggled" brew). After the gig we went over to Element for a drink from our friend and bartender el supremo, Justin. It was a tad difficult getting into work this morning...

When we get our web site up and running I intend to enrich these stories and accounts with more detail than I do here on the blog...but for now I'll just say that in the few hours we hung around together we think of John and MJ as dear friends (oh, and they're pretty good musicians too, btw...seriously, you ought to stop in and pick up a copy of their CD "Tablespoon" is simply excellent). Can't wait to have the guys back again.

Thank John, thanks travels and appreciative audiences...

Thursday, October 4, 2007

The Big News of the week (after the Packers-Bears game of course)

Ok, you know that we post our live music nights here and that I always say to come on over and have a great time with us...and that's always the gospel truth, those nights are always a good time. But this time I'm telling you to definitely ink your calendar and make plans to be here next Wednesday night, October 10th, because there're some guys coming who you really will be mighty pleased to see and hear. MJ Dunlap and John Watkins from Rosalee Motor Revival are stopping by on their tour through the Midwest to do a one-nighter here at the Stump. John told me that some have labeled their music "dark weird indie folk," and I suppose that's as accurate as anything.

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In any event, I know that Wednesday nights are funky for a lot of people (kids church stuff and sports, rehearsals and practices, meetings and so on...), but make it happen anyway! Come on over to the Stump at 8:00 or after, to unwind, have a smooth coffee or a fine brew, and listen to some darn good'll be glad you did. Check out their sound at the RMR myspace site: