Having Ringo Starr wear your store's T-shirt to the Grammy Awards was certainly good for business this week, but the Electric Fetus still needs help. The historic record shop sustained costly damage when a tornado swept through south Minneapolis last summer. A benefit show is now set for Feb. 26 at First Avenue and 7th Street Entry. Confirmed acts include Cloud Cult (its first local gig since the fall), Roma di Luna, Jeremy Messersmith, Caroline Smith and the Good Night Sleeps and Peter Wolf Crier. Tickets ($16) are now on sale.
Ringo's Fetus shirt, by the way, was given to him by his nephew, Christian-Philippe Quilici, events manager for Vita.mn. By midday Monday, the store had reportedly sold about a dozen tees and been visited by three TV crews. Word is Ringo was "charmed his little T-shirt could get this kind of traction," Quilici said, and he sent a well-wish when he heard of the tornado damage.GB will be MIA
Not a guy who can quietly take a month off without people noticing, Brian (GB) Leighton bravely opened up about entering Hazelden for alcohol treatment in a posting on his website this week. The workingman's bar star said he had tried outpatient rehab programs to avoid canceling gigs, but "when I'm in treatment during the day and in a bar that same night facing my demons, it doesn't work." Thus he will be off for all of February. Tim Mahoney will fill in for his Wednesday Bunker's gig starting Feb. 10. Leighton said he hopes to emerge from Hazelden with "more energy and excitement" for the stage.Random mix
The morning after its Monday gig at Memory Lanes, Minneapolis punk quartet Off With Their Heads announced a long-rumored record deal with Epitaph Records. Epitaph founder (and Bad Religion guitarist) Brett Gurewitz saw the band on its tour with Against Me! in 2008 and said, "Off With Their Heads might be the best punk band going right now. Epitaph needs them; music needs them." OWTH's Epitaph debut (its second full-length) was recently recorded at the Terrarium and is set for a summer release. ...
You know you're getting old when a nostalgic tribute band from your era is itself getting old: Wig- and Spandex-wearing metal cover band Hairball is celebrating its 10th anniversary Friday at the Sheraton Hotel South in Bloomington (9 p.m., $15). ... Steve Blexrud, singer/guitarist in the blues-rock band Thunderheads, has issued a new solo CD, "Soul Song." He's promoting the disc Wednesday on Lonnie Knight's "radio" show "When Worlds Collide," streaming live on www.twincitiesradio.net from the Coffee Grounds in Falcon Heights (7 p.m., free). ...
KFAI-FM jockey Jackson Buck kicks off a new monthly series at the 331 Club, "Freewheelin' First Fridays," starting with Curtiss A this Friday (9:30 p.m., free). ... Much like when Sub Pop issued his classic "Microminiature Love" record, psychedelic guitar maestro Michael Yonkers is about to see another of his shelved albums released on a hip national indie label. Chicago's Drag City has set a Feb. 23 date for "Lovely Gold," recorded on an unusual "tube type" tape recorder and said to be his most multifaceted collection.
Chris Riemenschneider • 612-673-4658