Tag Archives: concerts in Dickinson North Dakota

Review Of Hairball Concert In Dickinson, North Dakota

On Friday, May 12, Pound Em Productions of Dickinson, brought the band Hairball to the West River Community Center Ice Rink in Dickinson.  This is unusual for me, I have nothing but good things to say about this event.

I was mistaken about the Hairball concert, I had heard about it last year, and I thought that they had multiple bands that performed rock songs from the 1980s.  Hairball is the name of the band, it is just one band, and they performed for about 2-1/2 hours.

Here is a quote from the band’s website, Hairballonline.com:

“Hairball is a Rock & Roll experience you won’t forget.  A band puts on a concert – Hairball puts on an event!  The lights, sound, video screens, smoke, fire, blood, bombs, confetti, spiders, snakes & monsters (oh my) and the screaming hoards of rabid Hairball fans create an event – an event that hits you so hard, it’ll take a few days to recover! Rock & Roll will NEVER die!!!

Vocalists Bobby, Steve and Joe Dandy lead the band through a 2+ hour, mind-blowing, and drop-dead accurate homage to some of the biggest arena acts in the world. Van Halen, KISS, Motley Crue, Queen, Journey, and Aerosmith are but a few of the acts fans will see brought to life. The Hairball stage becomes an entirely new rock concert before your very eyes countless times throughout the night.”

The above quote from the Hairball website describes the band’s performance this past Friday night, better than I could.  The band played for about 2-1/2 hours, non-stop.  I was paying attention to other things at the concert besides the band, and I could not give you an accurate count on how many times a “different” lead vocalist would take the stage.  By “different” lead vocalist, I mean that someone would come on stage dressed as Kiss, David Lee Roth, Freddie Mercury, or Axl Rose.  But there were more than this, because they also performed Journey songs, and AC/DC songs.

I would estimate that there were about 700 people at the concert.  I believe that pre-sale tickets were $25, tickets at the door were $35, and I heard that the VIP tickets were $100.  There was a VIP area upstairs, and also directly in front of the stage in a corral.  There was a very large open area for general admission ticket holders that was plenty big enough for everybody to stand, and it wasn’t overcrowded.  About two hundred to three hundred people sat in the bleachers.

Bernie Marsh, owner of Bernie’s Esquire Club, was the supplier of beer.  There were two drink sales areas, each manned by about four or five people.  You could buy several beers at once, and carry them away in a plastic bag with ice in it.  Bernie Marsh was in a good mood, his son Max was in an O.K. mood, and I believe that I saw his daughter Marinna Marsh, wearing very tight, black leather pants.

It looked like Marinna, but damn her legs were skinny, and she just had a baby about five months ago, could that be Marinna?  Who else would get that skinny?  I tried to stay away from her, but when she came out to clear tables wearing those tight leather pants, all I could think about for five minutes was slapping her ass very hard.  I am still thinking about it.

About half of the women who came to the concert, dressed up like trashy women from the 1980s, wearing high heeled boots, black stockings, short skirts, ripped cut-off jean shorts, and big hair wigs.  About a third of the men dressed like rock band members from the 1980s, wearing zebra striped, and leopard spotted spandex pants, and long hair  wigs.

The Hairball band was very good, the stage set up was very professional, it was indoors and not cold, there were enough security personnel, you could buy a sack full of beers and go sit down, and there were enough bathrooms.  There was nothing wrong, no problems, no fights, and everyone was having a good time.  The women got drunk, became more social, and danced with everyone.

There were many local celebrities at the Hairball concert.  Brady Paulson, who has the local band Outlaw Sippin, performed for about 45 minutes with his band Kramer, a 1990s tribute band.  Brock White, the organizer of the First On First concerts in Dickinson was there, along with event organizer April Grant.  Kim and Heather Landis of the Mollies.  Vocalist Geliza Hoese.  Sammy Chavez.

My Ninth Most Favorite Person In Dickinson, The Odd Fellows Lodge

My ninth most favorite person in Dickinson, North Dakota is the Odd Fellows Lodge.  I only became aware of the Odd Fellows Lodge in Dickinson in the summer of 2014 when I went to the downtown concert called Alive @ 5.  The Odd Fellows Lodge was the sponsor and organizer for Alive @ 5.  The Odd Fellows Lodge in Dickinson had existed since 1887.

Kevin Holten, who had been a professional rodeo rider, president of the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame, and writer for the Dickinson Press, joined the Odd Fellows Lodge in 2009.  In 2010, Kevin Holten organized the first Alive @ 5 in Dickinson with the Odd Fellows Lodge, I believe that it was his idea in the first place.  Kevin Holten is very mild-mannered and low-key, and I have never seen him say,  “I thought of it, it was my idea, and it’s mine, mine, mine!”

From the first Alive @ 5, and continuing, the Outlaw Sippin Band performs at the downtown summer concerts, provides and sets up their sound equipment for the concerts.  Even though sound equipment set up, operation, and take down goes from about 2:00 p.m. on Thursdays until about 1:00 a.m. Friday morning, I have never seen Beni Paulson, Brady Paulson, Emil Anheluk or any other Outlaw Sippin members gripe, complain, or argue.

Eric Smallwood was the lead organizer for Alive @ 5 in 2014 and 2015, until his ascension.  To the best of my knowledge, Eric Smallwood brought the following performers to Alive @ 5 for the first time:  Gwen Sebastian, Kat Perkins, Tigir Lily, Corb Lund, and Firehouse.

I believe that Kevin Holten was president of the Odd Fellows Lodge 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014.  Jeff Porcupine Pokorny was president in 2015 and 2016.  During the years 2010 through 2016, the Odd Fellows Lodge building which was built in the early 1900s, went through some physical restoration, with the work being performed by the Lodge members.  It was a surprise to me that the Odd Fellows Lodge also owned the ground floor portion of the building, which they opened as a V.I.P. lounge and bar during the downtown summer concerts in July of 2016.

Membership in the Lodge is open to everyone, male or female, young or old, with no concern for the member’s religious affiliation, politics, or occupation.  There are many different types of people who are members of the Odd Fellows Lodge.  There are some college professors, teachers, business owners, housewives, oil field workers, and construction workers.

This year the downtown summer concerts sponsored and organized by the Odd Fellows Lodge changed its name from Alive @ 5, to First On First Dickinson Summer Nights.  The lead event organizers this year were Brock White, Tracy Tooz, and Mike Odegaard.  Brock, Tracy, and Mike organized and ran all the events very competently, and were always calm and professional.  Other important volunteers whose names I can remember:  Dell and Marchell Kubas, April Grant, the other April, Andrew, Tracy Nash, Jeff Porcupine Pokorny, Eric Odegaard, DSU football player Bryce, the Outlaw Sippin Band, …

In my previous blog post, I wrote a First On First Dickinson Summer Nights year end review.  I started that blog post being mostly positive about how the concerts were organized and run.  But I had to say that the downtown summer concerts seem to have become mostly attended by people whose primary focus is drinking alcohol, which I think has caused family attendance to decline.

My opinion is, that the downtown summer concerts will be most beneficial to Dickinson if they can be enjoyed by the broadest range of people, including families with children.  The more famous, “bigger” bands, brought mostly people that were in the age range of people that normally go to Rock or Country concerts, 16 year olds to 50 year olds mostly, with no kids, no elderly, and no families.

In 2014 and 2015, the North Dakota performers Gwen Sebastian, Kat Perkins, and Tigir Lily seemed to have brought more families with their children, probably for the following reasons:  they were from North Dakota, they were engaging with the local people, and because of the music that they play.  Last year a very good band that was not well known in Dickinson was the Corb Lund band from Canada, this was a “fun” band that was liked by all ages.  This year another very good band that was not well known in Dickinson was Zeona Road from South Dakota.  Zeona Road, Corb Lund, Tigir Lily, Gwen Sebastian, and Kat Perkins connected with the local people of all ages in Dickinson, and these performers made the concerts seem more like a family event and a community event.

The Rock Bar And Downtown Dickinson Summer Concerts

The first Downtown Dickinson Summer Concert will be Thursday, June 9th, 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.  1st Street will be closed from the Rock Bar all the way to Bernie’s Esquire Club.  The concert area will be larger this year so that people have more room, the food vendors have more room, and so that both Bernie’s Esquire Club and the Rock Bar can have outside beer gardens.

You can go to the Facebook page “First on First, Dickinson Summer Nights” to see who the performers are each week, all the way through to September.  The event is free to everyone, no charge for entry.  Part of the money to pay for the performers is raised by the alcohol sales at Bernie’s Esquire Club and the Rock Bar, that is why there is the policy of no personal alcohol being brought to the event.  Everybody that is going to drink alcohol needs to buy it from Bernie’s Esquire Club or the Rock Bar so that the performers can be paid.

This year the event will be different.  The event area is larger, so that people will not be so tightly packed together in front of the stage.  There will be more bathrooms located throughout the event area.  I am from out-of-state, and I don’t mind saying what everybody has noticed, most of the out-of-state workers have returned to the states where they came from.  If the local people in Dickinson found the events to be too crowded last year, they won’t be too crowded this year.

I also want to tell everybody that Kathy Fisher has returned to again own the Rock Bar!  I am sure that there are many friends, customers, and former employees that will be very happy to see Kathy.