An old bar on Grand Rapids' West Side has been updated to look ... retro.
The new Tip Top Deluxe Bar & Grill is a throwback to the ‘40s and ‘50s with live rockabilly music, Southern cooking and a retro look. Opened last weekend, the Tip Top is the brainchild of Ted Smith, general manager of the Orbit Room, and Frank Lehnen, who owns Rocky's Bar & Grill in the North Monroe corridor.
Over the years Grand Rapids has had its fair share of quality music venues. From the oft-remembered classics such as the Reptile House, the Orbit Room and the old Intersection in Eastown, to new stalwarts like Founders, the DAAC, and MXTP just north of downtown, there has nary been a shortage of places to play.
It didn't take long for a little rock and roll anarchy to turn up at the newly re-launched Val-Du-Lakes Amphitheatre. The moment arrived just three songs into the first live set in more than a decade at the legendary outdoor theater. Sal Coz Costa, the lead guitarist for opening night opener My Darkest Days, invited fans to tip over a barricade fence and rush the stage.
After a year and a half performing live, the Kari Lynch Band is creating quite the sensation. From playing out of state to doing shows in local bars, the small town country band has come a long way in a short time.
The Grand Rapids-based country band released its self-titled EP on Tuesday, May 17 on iTunes. The five-song CD showcases lead singer Kari Lynch, Matthew Kok on acoustic guitar, Ryder Jones on electric guitar, Sam Briggs on drums and Chris Bardolph on bass.
Matthew Forbush just spent $350 on Lady Gaga tickets. Now, this is a guy who takes pop seriously. "I'm really just a fan of the enormous amount of pop culture she represents," Forbush said. As frontman of Grand Rapids-based electro-pop duo Alexis, Forbush doesn't consider the world of pop an inferior one.
Twenty-three-year-old Lzzy Hale, the delectable driving force behind Halestorm, doesn't have to think about it for long. "I don't know if I have, actually," she replies when asked if she's ever made it through an interview without being asked The Question.
That's because girls in rock bands must always answer for being girls in rock bands. They must bear the palpitating burden of The Angle — so sexy, so obvious, so front-cover. It's a law. And even though respect is growing for her incredible talent (separate that from for her body), Hale isn't above it.
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