AND THE CRADLE WILL ROCK by Edward Ángel Sotelo
In order to more fully adopt the pose of hoary hipster, I have to say things like, “Gah, I remember the Old Tremont.” Well, that’s a bunch of foolishness. I don’t remember the old Tremont. Mostly because i wasn’t there in the raw, grimy days of which I’ve heard tell that happened seemingly indeterminable decades ago. Back then, I was killing time at St. Ignatius High; I don’t think this good catholic schoolboy would have made a proper urban pioneer. Let me retract that now that I think about it. When I was very, very young and my parents were still coping this this new, strange thing called “America”, we lived somewhere in the Pilgrim Church on West 14th. I was apparently baptized at St. Augustine. For the purposes of this story, that’s neither here nor there, other than some vague claim to having known Tremont in its elder days.
The main reason I can’t regale anyone with tales of boho bygones is that I really can’t remember much at all. I wasn’t on drugs, or on the lam, or more of a headcase than I am now. I was, however, barely rubbing two nickels together in the late 90s; I was getting slammed upside the headby serious bouts of unemployment and kicked in the eye by poverty. I’d also like to add that I had a massively powerful heater squatting in my less-than-furnished second-floor dump that NEVER STOPPED GIVING OFF HEAT, even in the sweltering Cleveland summer. Ever go to a run-down Convenient food mart and peek into the grease-caked rotisserie machines and see the chicken bodies baking in the muck. I was that guy. Those heater fumes boiled my memory away.
I can at times, however, strain to recall a distinct camaraderie on Kenilworth, what with my downstairs neighbor Holly and the Southside Gallery only a few doors down from us. That was nice. I knew I could count on free chesse at least once every few months, which would tide me over the upcoming times of cheeselessness. In return for the cheese, I’d occasionally donate my time in rock format. According to the compiler of this tome, Ms. Brandt, an improv group I played with by the name of Hoobajoob regaled people in the basement with horrible noise. Before that, my punk rock combo, The Conservatives, played an opening with a friend who wasn’t really our drummer. Good as he was, I don’t think we really prepared much for the gig. I recall sucking something fierce. Yet I do recall artist Frank Green saying to Ms. Brandt, “You gotta have this kind of stuff here more often!”
And I do recall eating quite a bit of free cheese that night.
live music provided by
Cruel, Cruel Moon - Dec 1994, Aug 1995, Feb 1996
Timothy Beamon - May 1996
Maceo Noisette & Jerome Saunders - June 1998
Hoobajoob - Mar 1999
Flux Up 10% - Sep 1999