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Guiney A Go-Go 

Reality star plays unreal set

A caveat: I don't really watch reality television, unless you count things like, you know, the news. I'm not up on whatever "exotic" country the Survivor series is currently shooting in, and I damn sure don't make it a point to check out The Bachelor or The Bachelorette. But there I was Wednesday evening at the Visulite Theatre, queueing up to see Bob Guiney, better known (or so I'm told) as the Bachelor TV series' "Bachelor Bob." Not knowing Bob Guiney from Papua New Guinea, I wasn't sure quite what to expect.

Now I'm not even sure how to describe what I saw.

Guiney was slated to play about an hour-long set, which was to begin at 9:30pm. In theory, this was to give our man time to sign some autographs afterwards and greet all the lovely young ladies in attendance. What it really did was give Guiney an excuse to show up about an hour late and his fans plenty of time to get good and liquored up. In the meantime, Guiney's road manager took to the stage and played some songs on guitar, including a semi-earnest take on "Hotel California."

Finally, Guiney hit the stage with his band, who looked like they stepped out of an Urban Outfitters catalog. Guiney wore faux-weathered jeans, as well as a faux-vintage T-shirt atop some (probably faux) long johns. All of this was carefully tucked into his jeans in the front only -- the better to show off his fancy tooled-leather belt.

Oh, the music? Quite possibly the most pedestrian, hackneyed, rote, cliched, off-key, simplistic, bathetic (searching thesaurus), downright awful thing I've ever heard.

Not that it mattered. The audience had already split into two groups by that point: the liquored-up crowd telling Bob at every song break that he was cute, and everyone else, who seemed to be sticking around to see just how bad it could get. (When three different employees of a club ask a writer to take it easy on them, you know it's a bad show.)

Soon, Bob announced he had one more song, and I reconsidered my plan to sue Creative Loafing for exposing me to hazardous working conditions. When the song was over, Bob's Eagles-loving road manager came out to urge the crowd to "make a little fuckin' noise" (people were actually whispering at this point). As the band took the stage, Guiney mentioned that they hadn't had time to rehearse while on tour, and thanked everyone for allowing them to do so on stage. I thanked God his 15 minutes are about up.

Friday evening, Concord's Avett Brothers played the Neighborhood Theatre. If you're a regular reader of The Loaf -- or the local daily, or listen to WBT or WNCW, or basically watch any news source outside of Al Jazeera -- you may have heard about this. Local band, big draw. Young and old, rich and po'. Sold the joint out last time they played it.Oops, they did it again. Playing a CD release party for their new album Mignonette, The Avetts -- along with ace promoter/manager Dolph Ramseur, fast becoming this town's Col. Tom Parker -- managed to fill the humid old theater yet again. In fact, it was so full when I arrived that I got my ticket, walked up the ramp to get my wristband, and promptly walked out again in search of fresh air.

Thankfully, the theater set up an additional beer booth to handle the crowd, which was located right beside the Avetts' merchandising table. In typical audacious-but-cool fashion, the band was offering block-style show prints announcing the show. Done in a triptych fashion with one Brother in each panel, the prints sold for $15 apiece, and were also available as a framed set for...$180. For those with even bigger budgets, Scott Avett had a solo showing of his paintings at the new gallery next to the theater, Empathinc. The most expensive of these cost $4000.

Deciding it was all too rich for my blood, I bought a PBR and caught the rest of the show, but not before hatching a plan. If a picture is worth a thousand words, I wonder what 300 could get me?

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