"Creative Loafing needs a sexual predator writing for them," advised Nate Oliver of Have Gun Will Travel when he found me talking to his lady friend. "That could be your hook, Alfie."
"Thanks," I said, "but that's basically what I already do."
We were backstage at Skipper's Smokehouse for WMNF's "This is Radio Clash: a Tribute to The Clash." Nate was jealous of my ability to talk to tons of hot women each night under the guise of investigative journalism, while his only pick-up line was, "Hey, I'm in a rock 'n' roll band" as if women ever fell for sweaty musicians. Besides, Skipper's was teeming with over 17 bands' worth of musicians but only one erotic journalist.
The event was a success for the same reason that WMNF is the premier community-funded volunteer radio in the country: There's strength in numbers and diversity. With 17 bands playing 15 minute sets, I expected the show to run late, but the volunteer staffers kept things moving with as much efficiency as they run their radio station.
"This is as close to country as The Clash comes," announced the Urbane Cowboys, setting the stage for their clap-along rendition of "I Fought the Law." However, when Blind Buddy Moody took the stage after the Urbane Cowboys, he proved it could get a little more country. He sat in a straw hat and a denim tuxedo strumming his acoustic and blowing his harmonica. He howled Clash covers like Irish ballads with a deep, bottom-of-the-barrel voice and just enough teeth to prove he'd taken some hits in his life and was still swinging. I hadn't expected an old-time country singer to cover a Clash song and probably neither did The Clash, but I should have suspected it considering WMNF's eclectic mix. I may not always keep my radio tuned to WMNF, but I always check the station to see what wild stuff they're playing.