Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Gustafer Yellowgold

Like Ziggy Stardust, David Bowie's 70's star man, Gustafer Yellowgold, the lemon headed little guy from the sun, performs rock shows here on Earth.

 He's done pretty well for a space man, opening for Wilco and The Polyphonic Spree and earning rave reviews in The New York Times.
 We saw him at Schuba's on Sunday in all his yellow, cartoon glory, with his creator Morgan Taylor, Illustrator/Songwriter, who both call New York, home.

Even without a back up band, Morgan and Gustafer had their audience singing along and entranced by the projections and silly lyrics.   For creativity and sheer goofiness, Gustafer Yellowgold wins points in our book.  Who wouldn't laugh at a dude whose best friend and roommate is, Forrest Applecrumbie,  a flightless Pterodactyl. Gustafer and Forrest built a small cottage-style home on the edge of an uncharted wooded area in Minnesota.

 He has a pet Eel named Slim (short for Slimothy) and a pet Dragon named Asparagus who lives in his fireplace and loves corn on the cob. Gustafer's pals, the Mustard Slugs practice their math under the shrubbery.

  Schubas, and a growing number of small clubs, are discovering a huge, untapped market of people who are more than happy to drop cash for multiple Bloody Marys at an 11AM Sunday rock concert.   These people are called parents of  young children. 

In their b.c. (before children) years, these people thought nothing of staying out till 2 or even 4AM.   But now all nighters mean a teething toddler or child with the stomach flu.   Hitting a bar at 11AM, to rock out with your progeny, is better than never getting out at all. And it's lots more fun than dropping your whole pay check on a sitter and staying out till the wee hours, only to have two crazed monkeys jump on your hung over head at the crack of dawn, begging for breakfast!

 Schuba's can even help you out with breakfast.  Swing by next door, for tasty pre-show treats like these yummy, New Orlean's French-style beignets.

This particular show was big with the preschool set, but that may have as much to do with the demographics of Schuba's Family Series, as Gustafer's appeal.   The kids' ages in the audience seemed to peak around Kindergarten and top out around 4th grade.  However, my 3rd grader found himself head bopping and singing along during the show, despite my fears that he might find the songs too babyish.  Honestly, most of the adults in the audience were laughing and singing along at least as much as the little ones.  

As we left Schuba's to the strains of the 1967 hit, Mellow Yellow, by Donovan, both kids clamored for a Gustafer disc.   The girl is thrilled with her purple tee, featuring Slimothy the eel, making a lovely S, for Sagezilla.   And they both were excited about all the free temp tattoos of Yellowgold and his odd assortment of cohorts.

My kids had a good time exploring Gustafer Yellowgold's web site, once we got home.  The games are geared toward older children.   They played the "Remembery" matching games and had a dessert smashing good time, increasing their reflexes in a game called "Cake Smasher", based on Gustafer's hobby.   They also loved Eel Duck Bounce and "Shrimpin, Prawn Dangerland Game".

Check out Gustafer's site for silly games, songs, upcoming shows, merch, and news.


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