May 29: A New Orleans Tribute to The Replacements

Check out this Replacements tribute show happening this Friday, May 29 at One Eyed Jack’s in New Orleans.  Love the poster!

A New Orleans Tribute to The Replacements plus Deadly Fists of Kung Fu


Next Stop: Barcelona!

So, apparently we’re not the only Minnesotans visiting #Amsterdam this month? #TheReplacements

A photo posted by Tane Danger (@tanedanger) on

Get ready Europe, here come the Replacements:


Remembering Ross (Roscoe) Shoemaker

Ross Shoemaker, known by his friends as Roscoe, was killed in a car accident in Broken Arrow, OK last night.

Roscoe was the manager of the Bowery in Oklahoma City in November 1984 and he taped the now infamous show that became “The Shit Hits the Fans”. From Rolling Stone, which place TSHF as #50 on its list of the 50 Greatest Live Albums of All Time:

A pre-sobriety Paul Westerberg, Chris Mars and Bob and Tommy Stinson alternate between the best and worst bar band of all time on Twin/Tone’s cassette-only The Shit Hits the Fans. Recorded with two hanging mics at Oklahoma City’s converted church venue the Bowery in 1984, these 24 songs (19 of which are covers) are a lubricated mix of blues, metal, soul and spilled-beer wankery. “I asked Paul or somebody if he minded that I record the show,” Bowery manager and DJ Roscoe Shoemaker recalled in the Replacements oral history All Over But the Shouting. “‘Why? We suck.’ Typical Westy response.”

This is a lovely piece by Michael Corcoran called “RIP Roscoe: Death of a Fan” that celebrates Roscoe and his love of music.

If you can live a life like Ross Shoemaker did, so full of love and enthusiasm, you will have a great one. It will be a real life of ups and downs, deep sorrows and bursts of euphoria. A life that touches many.

“Alex Chilton” is a song about being a fan. I’m playing it for Roscoe now and it’s never sounded sadder. This is gonna take some time.

Deepest sympathy to Roscoe’s friends and family on their loss.


The Guardian Interview | The Replacements: ‘God almighty, what were we trying to prove?’

The London shows (June 2 and 3) are fast-approaching and The Guardian has a great piece on the band that includes interviews with Paul and Tommy.

replacements 1988

The Replacements in New York in 1988. Photograph: Ebet Roberts

The Replacements: ‘God almighty, what were we trying to prove?’
They wound up audiences, were often too drunk to play and got banned from late-night TV. Thirty years later, the rock’n’roll antagonists have, they say, finally learned to behave.

The Current has already picked their nine best quotes from the Replacements’ interview with the Guardian, here are a few of mine:

“I’d been to jail three times already, for fucking just being a little fuck-up” – Tommy talking about himself at 11, when he was given a bass guitar by Bob in an effort to keep him out of trouble.

“There was a game that had to be played that had nothing to do with music and everything to do with stroking someone else and fucking doing the whole song and dance that was completely foreign and, quite frankly, illegal to us,” Stinson says of their attitude to career management. “It was reprehensible some of the things they wanted us to do that were supposed to make our career bigger and ultimately make them the money. I swear to God we tried several times to get in line with that and we just couldn’t do it. Our personalities would not allow us to do that thing.”

“I admit there’s a lack of dignity,” says the Replacements’ singer, songwriter and rhythm guitarist, Paul Westerberg. “But that’s part of what being the band is. You have to go out on a limb and take a chance. Falling on your face when you’re young and good looking is one thing, but when you’re an old man it can be quite humiliating.”

“I knew that was a good little song” – Paul on “Skyway”, which The Guardian describes as “the perfect acoustic miniature”.

We had a metal maniac guitar player and an artist for a drummer. And me, a closet folkie. It made for a nice mix of unpredictablility. I think you’re hard pressed to find another group that had as many facets to them as we did, and going through the songs now there’s an unlimited variety of everything from quasi showtunes to fake speed metal. God almighty, what were we trying to prove?” – Paul on what enabled the band to have such a diverse sound.

“Our nemesis was the Cult – they were on the same label, and all of our records were pushed back or held because the Cult had a new record out,” he says. “So they’d hire someone to throw in a bunch of compression and reverb to make it sound like it would work on the radio and that kind of funny business. But it didn’t sound right, it didn’t look right. We were just…Midwestern.” – Paul on being Midwestern, not putting up with any funny business and having to compete with long-haired guys from England.

“Since starting up with the band again it’s kind of shaken every cobweb out of my head and got me rattled in a way – probably in a good way. I can’t relax any more. I can’t sit down and watch the television. I’m torn between the world of being a father, a homeowner and a creative artist and a rock’n’roll singer. I was doing the crossword puzzle waiting for you to call, and that’s about as relaxing as I get.” – Paul

It’s a long article that covers the band’s history and my only quibble is the mention of Paul’s “quietly dignified solo career”. I think Grandpaboy might have a quibble as well with being labeled “quietly dignified”.
neither quiet no dignified

Also check out this feature The Guardian ran in April, “The Replacements: 10 of the best” , with their picks from some of the greatest Replacements songs. It expands on the praise for “Skyway” (and rightly so):

9. Skyway
I interviewed Westerberg last week for a forthcoming Guardian feature and he told me, half joking, that Skyway was the first good song he’d written. It’s not true: he’d written plenty already by that time. But it might be the most perfect song he’s ever written. It’s nothing more than a simple acoustic love song, but it’s rooted perfectly in place – in the skyways of Minneapolis, the enclosed passages between buildings so the locals don’t have to venture into the winter snows (Minnesota is the coldest of the lower 48 states). A man keeps seeing a woman, he wonders if they’ll meet, and when he gets his chance “there wasn’t a damn thing I could do or say”. That’s all there is to it. It’s sad and true and heartfelt.