Knockout Jones

Andrew Olson

Reader Weekly

On Friday (Dec. 10th) we decided to check out Stargate Nightclub in Superior. Or as the T-shirts the bartender’s were wearing called it, "The Gate".. Short for the Gates of Hell!

We entered the extremely dark nightclub to a mural of the Beatles, must be a rough place though because Ringo had a big hole in his face where someone punched out his nose. Why Ringo, what did he ever do? I know he wasn’t as cute as the other Beatles (My mom and girlfriend agree Paul was cutest), but I imagined the drunkenness that must have entered into that fight!

I also had a feeling this was not the home of Lake Superior Rock & Roll. Stargate reminds me of First Avenue, cut in half. The crowd was glowing in the blacklights, giving me two thoughts.. First, "how could a person pick someone up when your teeth appear bright yellow in these lights, and second, "where could I buy a Glow Stick?"

The crowd and a vending machine in the lobby answered my every question. You know when you watch a movie and everyone in the club is beautiful.. You say to yourself, "That’s not real-life." Stargate reminds you that no, in real life it doesn’t look that way. Cheap drinks, a massive TV to watch videos (now going out is more like sitting at home I guess), and some Northwoods Gangstas lining the place (and their 1990s dressed clubbers dancing enticingly). This was a far different scene than Saturday night (Dec. 11th) at the Reef in Duluth for Knockout Jones.

A six piece band, Knockout Jones plays funky covers like, "Let’s Get It On", "I Will Survive", "Roller Coaster", Neil Diamond, The Strokes, White Stripes, and Prince. Hand clapping excitement surrounds the band with the audience, created by the band’s enthusiasm. One moment had guitar player and singer, Ben Luoma, reaching over to play on Steve Garrington’s bass. This fun scene infected the crowd with a rabidity of post-Footloose dancing. When a slow song was played many danced innocently with a partner like they did in junior high. Sometimes there were long pauses between songs to change singers, but this year old band does what it takes to entertain. Other members include Rochelle Luoma (Lead Singer), Nate Mattson (Guitar), Dan McGovern (Sax & Keys), and Luke Perry (No not the 90210 guy) on Drums. They play this Saturday (Dec. 18th) at the Tap Room, in Duluth.

Live music always has a different effect on a crowd. Where at Stargate people were sitting and enjoying the "ambiance," The Reef and Knockout Jones had them bouncing out of their seats.. Too bad poor Ringo is stuck at a trendy dance club in Superior, and hope that nose heals!