New Heathens

Lakeside Lords

Friends, I know I've been away for three weeks but I've never been so happy to return to New York City as I was on Saturday night. I went straight from Newark Airport to the Lakeside Lounge and have visited that favorite bar o' mine every night since. I'd like to give you Reason #17,304 and Reason #24,001 why It's Great to Live in New York.

Reason #17,304: Secret Happy Hour Shows by Bands Reunited After Two Decades

The Del Lords rocked the hell out of New York City from the bands inception in 1984 through their fourth and last studio album in 1990. After 20 years the four original members, Scott Kempner, Eric "Roscoe" Ambel, Manny Caiati and Frank Funaro, reunited and cut an outstanding new EP entitled, "Under Construction." Check it out.

Yesterday at the Lakeside Lounge the Del Lords (billed as "The Elvis Club") played a secret show that was hard-charging, rhythmic, exciting and totally rocking. Today the Del Lords flew to Spain for a tour.

I knew of the Del Lords from Roscoe's biography and I own their compilation CD but seeing them yesterday was a shot in the arm. Check these dudes out. They rock.

Reason #24,001: J.D. Hughes

I'll never understand why people go to comedy clubs in New York City. Rather than suffering through scores of unfunny Andrew Dice Clay wannabees, visit the Lakeside Lounge on Monday and Friday nights. Those are the nights that J.D. "Doggie" Hughes bartends.

He may be the funniest man in New York City.

J.D. has a whip-quick wit and a Muppet's sensibility (indeed, one of his favorite utterances is Fozzy's "Waka-waka-waka!"). J.D. will switch from scatting gibberish ("A-doo-ba-da-ba-dee, a-dee-ba-da-ba-doo!") to miming a zombie singer, to playing air-drums complete with stick tosses (in another incarnation, J.D. is one of the best drummers in the city). On top of all the wackadoo humor, J.D. can fire off puns and witty comebacks the likes of which would make Groucho Marx cheer.

This guy is a gem. If you go to the Lakeside on either Monday or Friday nights and don't leave in hysterics, your tab is on me.

One more Lakeside thing: New Heathens will play a little Hello Disaster gig there on March 18. 9 p.m. Free.

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