If you’ve been reading my blogs, then you’re no doubt familiar with the music of The Handcuffs, a fantastic, rocking band from the windy city of Chicago. (Get their latest CD here, if you haven’t already.) The founding members of The Handcuffs are Chloe F. Orwell and Brad Elvis, both of whom, I’m happy to say, are very good friends of mine. In fact, I think they’re the only people to appear on every single blog I’ve done. Check them out on: The Marty Wombacher Show, A Guy Walks Into 365 Bars and Marty After Dark. They haven’t appeared on this one yet, but we’ll fix that right now, ladies and gentlemen...
The Handcuffs! From left to right: Ellis Clark, Brad Elvis, Chloe F. Orwell and Emily Togni.
Not content to let his drum stool cool down, Brad also drums with the Detroit band, The Romantics. Brad called a week ago to let me know that they had a gig playing out at Coney Island and said if I wanted to go, he’d put me on the band’s backstage list. And so, it’s off to Coney Island we go!
Here we are on the Q train, Coney Island bound!
And once again through the magic of the internet, you're spared a grueling 52 minute train ride and here we are. It rained all day, but it finally stopped and the sky is just a little overcast.
Welcome to Coney Island.
Wow, everything's closed on the boardwalk, I guess because of the rainy day.
Eureka! Ruby's is open, I should've known they wouldn't pussy out because of a little rain, let's go check it out.
There's plenty of room at the bar, let's grab snag a stool and have a pre-Romantics beer or three.
And here's Stephanie, the pretty and friendly bartender serving up the first beer of the evening.
The signage is making me hungry in here.
So I oredered a dog and this gentleman happily served it up.
An ice-cold beer and a hot dog slathered in mustard, a perfect two-course Coney Island dinner!
I love this classic Ruby's poster on the wall.
Luckily, Brad just called and said they had finished their sound check and I could stop by and hang out before the show. I was starting to forget why I came out in the first place for some reason.
A security guard told me I needed to come back here for my backstage pass, but I'm a little lost...
And who shows up to save the day, but Brad Elvis! He saw me wandering around and led me to Jillian who gave me a pass and a wristband for the show.
Here's Brad with Martin and his girlfriend Vinny, backstage in the Romantics trailer. Martin and Vinny are longtime Romantics fans and they live in Brooklyn. Martin's a standup comic and you can check out his website here: Martin Chaddock.
It's Mike Skill's birthday and they had this cake made for the occasion. Very cool!
And here's the band posing backstage for photos. From the left, Brad Elvis, birthday boy Mike Skills, Rich Cole and Wally Palmar.
One last shot and it's showtime!
Since I had a backstage pass, I was able to take photos from the stage, so you can see the show from the band's point of view.
And they're off! The Romantics take the stage, bathed in magenta light.
And there's Brad pounding the skins of the drums. Brad's one of the best drummers in the world and it's always a blast to watch him in action.
The sun has gone down as the Romantics rock on!
Mike's getting a workout running across the stage.
It was a great show and the Coney Island crowd loved the Romantics.
Mucho thanks to Brad and the band for letting me take photos on the stage and hanging out before and afterwards, it was a great time!
But all good times have to come to an end, and here I am in front of Nathan's. I thought I'd get a hot dog for the ride back, but it's too crowded.
So it's back into the subway after a great Coney Island night.
And one last obligatory subway window mirror shot, as the train chugs back to Manhattan.