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It’s been almost 20 years since Kansas City “big melodic noise” stalwarts Molly McGuire played in San Diego at what is now Pecs bar in North Park.

“There were like 10 people there and they were drunk as shit,” recalls frontman Jason “Captain Blackie” Blackmore, who is known locally for his work with Sirhan Sirhan, Rats Eyes, and Otro.

“They totally dug us and bought shirts and CDs. Then we played the Casbah a year or so later. It was the night of the [San Diego] Music Awards… We played for the doorman and the bartender.

"I just remember really digging the vibe and the palm trees. And Off the Record. I remember us going to Off the Record on 5th the first time we toured through San Diego. [We] bought a beer at the Greek place next door and watched a guy take a piss on the sidewalk in broad daylight right in front of the window of the restaurant. That and the fact that Tanner and Pitchfork are from here - that’s why i moved here.”

Fourteen years after disbanding due to frustration with their label, Epic, the scattered McGuires's are regrouping this summer to perform at Middle of the Map Fest (April 5-7) in Kansas City.

“That’s what sparked this whole thing,” Blackmore told the Reader last month.

“They said, ‘this may be a long shot, but would Molly McGuire ever consider a reunion?’ I was in, but I didn’t know what everybody else was into. The first person I hit up was [drummer] Jason Gerken in LA. He manages a few bars and barely has a free minute to himself, but he said, ‘fuck it, sounds fun.’

So we hit up everybody else and they’re all really into it. These are guys I haven’t jammed with for years, and there’s this really positive vibe. Everybody is more than enthusiastic about it. We are basically those guys at 40 or 45 years old that we used to make fun of who are like, ‘hey, we’re getting the band back together.’”

Molly McGuire will also be compiling a full-length album, Cursed, of new and previously unreleased material.

Pictured: Molly McGuire members


Molly McGuire, Sleep Lady, and Stephen Rey & The Slicks

Soda Bar - 3615 El Cajon Boulevard - City Heights

Friday, March 23

9 p.m. - $7

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