Everything Haight

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“I Just Want To Play”

Wednesday Feb. 8 turned out to be quite the adventure.  After waking up at 3 a.m., I switched on autopilot and biked to work as usual.  One doppio macchiato later, my senses heightened as the buzz in my head signaled overly hyped movements and gestures in jittery nervousness.  Caffeinated:  Check!

The temporary fix wore off of course.  After I worked a full day I wanted nothing more than to sleep, but I then sluggishly biked to school.  By the end of class I felt like a zombie. Blaah… Despite my long start, the day had just begun; at about 6 in the early evening I set out to the Haight!

Nate Miarecki laughs holding his guitar while "Rattlesnake Eyes" snacks on an Abba Zaba on a short break.

Quickly I was hit by a second wind.  It was as if I was reborn in the midst of what seemed to be a revitalization of a long-established bohemian world.  The night, full of life, captivated my curiosity and luckily led me to meet a couple of street performers in front of Amoeba Music.

Nate Miarecki and his companion whom chose to go by the alias “Rattlesnake Eyes,” were the first of many musical encounters for the night.  According to Nate, they were “just hanging out,” and “trying to have a good time.”

The pair played some music for awhile, teaching each other songs before heading out to the Mission for the night.  And then they packed up and left.

I spent the next few hours strolling the streets to see what else I can find to do, who else I can stop and talk to.  In the end I came back to the area where I started and found that there was a show going on at the Milk Bar.  The venue would become host to a gallery of catchy-garage-band noise.

Vocalist Theo Slavin, ends the set with echoed noise, twisting and turning the knobs on his effects pedals.

Vocalist and guitarist of the unnamed opening act, Theo Slavin, was excited to have the opportunity to play their first show at Milk Bar.

“I just want to play,” says Slavin.  “You never get to do it a lot.”

Drummer Taylor Meclroy adds that Milk Bar is a “cool spot,” and that “it’s a dope bar.”

The night continued and I mingled with the crowd.  To my surprise, I was feeling more comfortable talking to people.  I no longer felt like the lost child in the first week on assignment.

Two bands played before it was time for the headlining act.  The Machetes were a throwback rock and roll band with a little punk edge. The crowd responded well, accepting the music, letting it absorb into their bodies as the beats pulsed with every dance movement.

At the end of the night, I left the show feeling amped.  Being a musician myself, not only did the music resonate through me, but the words of Theo Slavin echoed in my head.

“I just want to play.”

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