An article about The Place in Nashville's The City Paper mentioned Elliston Place's long forgotten '90s hangout of mine, The Grapevine Cafe. How I forgot about it, I can't figure. I was there to hear The Wooten Brothers regularly before it closed and 3rd and Lindsley got the opportunity to host their funky jams on a weekly basis. My buddy Chris and I drank many beers there and took any number of short-term girlfriends there during our brief stints of twenty-something coolness.
Me at my foggiest, using-parking-meters-as-walking-sticks period was also a proud supporter of my city's Screamin' Cheetah Wheelies as they played so regularly at the small digs of The Grapevine Cafe. I remember them as such a great Black Crowes-ish jam band. Of course, they had to jam well to make up for the absence of a lead singer who would tend to show up 30 minutes or more after official start time. (This reminds me of a time at the club next door when a band started over an hour late. I asked the record label rep who had given me the free ticket what the hold up was. He replied with a smile and a shrug and the words, "rock 'n' roll." That was reason enough. I smiled back, took another swig from my beer and waited patiently for The Tragically Hip to take the stage.)
I ran with a beautiful, blonde rock 'n' roller at the time who was enamored by the Wheelies...so much in fact that she ended up dating one of the musicians. There's something about losing a girl to a rocker with long hair and a guitar that just doesn't hurt at all; I mean, aren't we non-musicians supposed to lose girls to these guys? It's when we lose them to equally non-cool guys that it makes us question why. Anyway, they had their on-again off-again relationship, which coincided with our off-again on-again relationship. That's another thing about losing a girl to a musician -- they're bound to piss them off at some point.
Anyway, I have great memories from The Grapevine Cafe flooding back to me tonight. The location has housed Empress Chili, Sherlock Holmes' Pub, Piranha's Bar & Grill and is now home to Aladdin's Hookah Lounge (I hear there are bellydancers for your entertainment!). Rock 'n' roll.