“The Dollar Shows are my chance to give something back to the musical community without being required by a court order,” say Homeless Sexuals frontman Davit Buck of a new series he’s launching at the Soda Bar. “We get great bands together for one-dollar admission and one-dollar drink specials.”
3615 El Cajon Boulevard, City Heights
The bar has done two Dollar Shows so far, with a third set for October 12 with L.A. band Lady Sinatra, New Rome Quartet from Santa Ana (“Their music is like ’70s sexploitation psychedelic-jazz porno soundtracks”), and a local parody act called Big Buck Hunter & the Pros. “That’s the guys from Some Girls, Secret Fun Club, and Strikers doing a Nashville Pussy–style politically incorrect pseudo-redneck show, complete with rebel flags, hunting props, and a drummer whose voice sounds like Boomhauer from King of the Hill.”
At the first Dollar Show, “Someone complained that they were on the guest list and didn’t want to pay the dollar. So, for the second show, me and the people working at the Soda Bar put in the first bucks. I make no money, and I don’t take a percentage of the bar like most promoters do.” The club reports doing around $1000 in bar sales for each event, with 80 to 90 patrons ponying up the dollar entry fee.
Buck envisions a melding of street busking and traditional paying club gigs that are becoming all too rare. “Right now, I split the door three ways. So, at the first show, each band made, like, $25. I think it was $30 each for the second show, but, if we could fill the bar to capacity, we can also pass the hat for the bands after their set. If people really like the group, they can donate [cash]. It’s rare that you can see a live band and then decide how much it’s worth.”
The Homeless Sexuals will also play on October 12, but don’t be surprised if Buck is wearing an eye patch. “I injured it August 24 at Ché Café. I threw up [onstage] and was convulsing a bit, and my thumb somehow went into my left eye. By Sunday morning, it was completely closed. Turns out I scratched my cornea and need surgery. Right now, it’s like looking through a piece of silk.
“At first, I thought it’s probably just pink eye from the dirty floor at the Ché.”