Tag Archives: benetti’s coffee experience

Three Doors Down

I checked the albums for sale at Amazon’s MP3 store this morning and saw a new Three Doors Down album, so I tweeted, “Woah, Three Doors Down just released a new record.  I didn’t know they were still around. #feelslike1998”  I received a few hilarious responses, prompting me to compile them for all to see.  (Because of the sensitive nature of the topic, I have elected not to disclose these statements’ authors.)

I should add that it seems fitting that I type up these responses at Benetti’s Coffee Experience.  Until the demolition of a sewing supply store last year, the coffeeshop was three doors down from the high school I attended.  Irony, or just a convenient observation?

  • A few minutes after my original tweet, a friend simply replied, “Three Pants Down.”
  • Then another stated, “Yeah…and they’re the one band I can say, ‘I saw them before they got big’ and of course, I’m too embarrassed to say it :)”
  • One guy asked if the new album was called Fish Sticks (a reference to a South Park episode about Kanye West).
  • And finally, a friend replied via text message, “As long as we have troops overseas, there will be Three Doors Down. LOL.”

Okay, I’m done discussing suck bands.  There’s way too much good music out there to focus on corporate mainstream schlock rock.  In fact, I’ve had way too many cool music experiences to fixate on anything else for long.  You can be sure I’ll discuss some of these in my next few episodes.

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Episode 59: All the Millions of Times


Andrew Sallee approached me at a Denison Witmer concert at the Westport Coffeehouse about nine years ago. He asked, “So I’ve seen you hanging around The Billions at their shows.  Do you do music or something?” (His relatively new band, Namelessnumberheadman, had played with The Billions a couple times, and he had, in fact, seen me hanging out with them at their shows.) He then volunteered his services for any recordings I might make.

Namelessnumberheadman (photo by Kate Smith)

Since then, I’ve often wished Andrew would just leave the Northland and move to Raytown. We’d probably start a jangly, lo-fi psychedelic garage band and release seven-inch records at a Jay Reatard pace. I guess I’ll have to keep dreaming.

Until then, we get to enjoy his solo set tomorrow at the Benetti’s Fall Classic. The show starts at noon, and he’ll play with Sam Billen (Formerly of The Billions…see how this story has come full circle?) and The Sunday Paper.  He even promised to play my requested song. It’ll be a good day.


  1. “My Foolish Pride” – Charlatans (Who We Touch/The End/2010)
  2. “I’m Right Here with You” – Sam Billen (Miracles/Northern/2004)
  3. “Roam an Empty Space” – Monahans (independent/2010)
  4. “I Know How You Got Old” – Namelessnumberheadman (When We Leave, We Will Know Where We Have Been/Urinine/2002)
  5. “Leigh and Me” – Starflyer 2000 (Artcore, Volume 1/Tooth and Nail/1995)

Radio Free Raytown – Episode #59 (10/15/10)

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Benetti’s Fall Classic

Benetti's Fall ClassicAs some of you may know, I am acquaintances with Marcos Benetti, who has a coffeeshop here in Raytown.  The store’s manager, Ben Helt, has asked me to assist with a team of folks–enthusiastic about both Raytown and music–in organizing a string of midday concerts on the first four Saturdays in October.

Come enjoy great beverages beside fire pits, eating free s’mores and listening to legit bands (one of them, My Science Fiction Twin, is mine).

Oh yeah, don’t forget to buy these guys’ merchandise! Double rewards points given for tips to or merchandise purchases from the bands.

All shows begin at NOON in the parking lot behind Benetti’s Coffee Experience. NO COVER. Bring your own chairs and come on out!

October 2
-Chris Starks & Gil Cole of Isaac James
-Villa Sarchi

October 9
The Threes
-The Vinegaroons
Making Movies

October 16
-The Sunday Paper
Sam Billen

October 23
-Brilliant Geographers
-My Science Fiction Twin
-The Prims


Benetti’s Coffee Experience
Bandwagon Merchandise
Radio Free Raytown (That’s me!)
Revolution Radio

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Sunday Spin: Sounds of Christmas

I’m pretty excited about Sunday Spin at Benetti’s Coffee Experience this weekend, as my father-in-law, Jim Gutwein, has chosen all the music.  Katy’s parents are in town for Thanksgiving, and I asked Jim to share some records before they leave.  (Most of the records are culled from his personal collection, and Jim is proud to gloat that all are original pressings thereof.)  He has decided to play Christmas music Sunday evening, so grab a cup of coffee or hot chocolate and wind down from the hectic holiday weekend, looking forward to the Christmas season.

  1. Nat King Cole Trio – “The Christmas Song” (original 45 from 1946, not the version made popular in the the early 1960s)
  2. Bing Crosby – excerpt of a radio broadcast from A Christmas Sing with Bing (1956)
  3. Joan Baez – side 1 of Noel (1966)
  4. The Ramsey Lewis Trio – Sound of Christmas (1961)
  5. Tony Bennett – Snowfall: The Tony Bennett Christmas Album (1968)
  6. The Miracles – side 2 of The Season for Miracles (1970)
  7. The Temptations – side 1 of The Temptations Christmas Card (1970)
  8. Various Artists – side 2 of A Christmas Gift for You (1963)
  9. Charles Brown – side 1 of Charles Brown Sings Christmas Songs (1960)
  10. James Brown – side 2 of James Brown Sings Christmas Songs (1966)

We’ll augment your own research on these record with handout Sunday evening.  See you there from 6:00-9:00.

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Third Annual Black Friday Record Store Crawl

For the third year in a row, I will make the rounds procuring records on Black Friday.  This year, however, I’m inviting anyone to join.  (And trust me, if you think I’m giving out trade secrets, I could give you a running start and still beat you to the choice records.)

I’m giving you my itinerary, so you can meet up at any point along the way.

  1. We will start at Benetti’s Coffee Experience at 6:00 for caffeination.  We’ll leave for Half Price Books in Westport.  Although it opens at 7:00, we”ll arrive around 6:30 because there was a really long line last year.  The store hands out bags with $5 gift cards and coupons.  The store has a 20% off sale the entire day, and one lucky person in that first 100 gets a gift card for $100.
  2. Next, we’ll stop at Mama’s 39th Street Diner for breakfast.  They have the best omelettes and pancakes in town, so we have to go.  I might even get some of their amazing carrot cake, too.
  3. After breakfast, we’re going to Streetside Records.  The store has been selling used records for a while now, but I got wind that it’s fallen into a serious stash of music that will be “priced to sell.”  It opens at 9:00.

So yeah, see you bright and early on Friday!

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Sunday Spin (10/18/09)

As this is only my second week of Sunday Spins, I think it’s encouraging I have already found people excited enough about sharing their own records that I do not have to bring anything tonight.  If you would like to share a particular side of a clean record next week, let me know tonight or give it some thought this week.  Email me by Thursday morning with your selection, and include a brief explanation or anecdote to justify your choice.

Once again, I’ve planned much more than we can realistically get to, but that just means we’ll have to continue things next week.  Enjoy.

  1. Depeche Mode – Construction Time Again (Sire 1983)
  2. Stray Cats – Rant ‘N’ Rave with the Stray Cats (EMI 1983)
  3. The Temptations – Gettin’ Ready (Gordy 1966)
  4. The Mercy Seat – The Mercy Seat (Slash 1987)
  5. Wire – Send (Pink Flag 2003)
  6. Tubeway Army – Tubeway Army (Beggars Banquet 1978)
  7. Theatre of Hate – Original Sin Live (9 Mile 1985)

The Temptations – Gettin’ Ready
Gordy, 1966

I love The Temptations, as they seem to embody the shift from the us-generation of the 1960s and the me-generation of the 1970s, that I outline in my description of the current show at Benetti’s.  They started as a typical R&B male vocal group in the early 1960s performing bubblegum, but commercial success allowed them to work with songwriters like Barrett Strong and Norman Whitfield, and they started speaking out on social issue.  By the mid-1970s, the group splintered, barely resembling to original lineup (except for the fact that they adhered to their 6’5” or taller rule for inclusion).  This album finds them on the cusp of that transition from Smokey Robinson-penned tunes to Whitfield and Strong.

It’s not simply academic for me, however, as producer Smokey Robinson brings the tunes on Gettin’ Ready.  The title track and “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” are as good as anything the group ever recorded.  “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” is also probably my favorite vocal David Ruffin ever recorded, in a high key,  pushed his vocal range and giving the song a sense of urgency.

-Jonathon Smith

The Mercy Seat – The Mercy Seat
Slash Records, 1987

I will never forget discovering The Mercy Seat back in 1987 while walking by one of my favorite concert venues in Clifton (a suburb of Cincinnati that was home to the University of Cincinnati).  There was a huge poster with a picture of a band dressed all in white with one element different the others.  Zena Von Heppinstall was pictured a good head taller than the other three members, was quite a bit darker than the other members, and had a very short mini-skirt.  That 20 year old was smitten!  A minute later when I recognized Gordon Gano from one of the bands that intrigued me most (The Violent Femmes) I knew I had to know more.

Sadly, I was unable to catch their show but this vinyl is an important piece of their history since the release had never seen a CD release until this year.  Zena’s smooth alto, Gordon and Fernando Menendez’s two beat punk leanings and Patrice Moran’s muscled bass makes for a great contradiction that brings these 10 songs to life.  Gospel had never sounded so good for a 20 year old waiting for another Violent Femmes release.

-Jonathan Andrews

Theatre of Hate – Original Sin Live
9 Mile, 1985

In 1978 a British punk band known as “The Pack” was born.  Moving ahead two years, the band went through a change of members and reformed as Theatre of Hate.  Original Sin was the first album released by this new evolved band in 1980.  The live version was not released until 1985.  If you like that smooth, easy listening, make you feel good music, this is definitely not the band for your listening pleasure.  Theatre of Hate has an undeniable, raw, Joy Division esq. sound that will make you cringe at times, but I still find beauty in their work. The live album I brought is much more stripped down, bare, with very little effects compared to the studio release in 1980. The opera like sustain on the vocals really sets them apart from other British acts of this particular era. With all that said I really hope you can dig deep and find the underlying emotion, and context of this great post-punk band.

-Timothy Mahurin

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Episode #13: Weird music

My career in podcasting is over.  Here I am, promoting this Sunday Spin night at Benetti’s and working to promote that Angel Tree event next week, and I put out this weird mix of songs.  I hope someone tracks with me.  I guess I have a penchant for self-deprecation…

  1. Eyeless In Gaza – Seven Years (1981)
  2. Medicine – Miss Drugstore (1992)
  3. Mercury Rev – Coney Island Cyclone (1991)
  4. Bauhaus – Double Dare (1989)
  5. Jonathon Smith – Long Way Home (2008)
  6. Naked City – Speedfreaks (1989)

Radio Free Raytown – Episode #14 (10/8/09)

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Sunday Spin Setlist (10/11/09)

katy with headphonesI am playing some records at Benetti’s Coffee Experience on Sunday, to kick off the store’s weekly Sunday Spins.  I will have a sign-up sheet for you to bring an album next week, so will hopefully I will be providing fewer records each week.

Most of the time at these events, I will play entire sides of albums.  To keep things mixed up, I have chosen only to play one side of each album.  I’ll occasionally break from this and play an entire album if warranted, like when I play A Love Supreme in a few weeks.  (I already anticipate people’s criticisms about only playing half of these albums, but trust me, you will still get plenty of deep album cuts and non-singles.)

Since album sides usually run about 20-25 minutes, you can plan on a different side about every half hour.  I’ll start at 6:00, so plan accordingly, if you want to hear a particular record.  (I’ve included links describing the albums, so do your homework.)

  1. Duke Ellington – 70th Birthday Concert (side 1)
  2. Ray Charles – Greatest Hits (side 1)
  3. Oscar Peterson – Night Train (side 2)
  4. The Supremes – Where Did Our Love Go (side 1)
  5. The Kinks – Kinkdom (side 2)
  6. Buddy Miles – We Got to Live Together (side 2)
  7. Yes – Close to the Edge (side 2)
  8. Herbie Hancock – Head Hunters (side 1)
  9. Jimmy Cliff – The Harder They Come (side 2)
  10. Elvis Costello – This Year’s Model (side 2)
  11. XTC – Black Sea (side 2)

Oh yeah, and I’m going to post the next episode of Radio Free Raytown tomorrow morning, making your Friday even better!

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