Monday, October 30, 2006

The Phog Blog

As an "entity", this blog is to inform people, publicly, of our thoughts, and the things we think you should know. It isn't hidden. It is there for everyone to read. We use this site to reach out.
This last posting has gotten more response than every photo, event, discussion, and more in the history of this blog.

This site is just "official".
To all those regulars out there, you know these thoughts already, because we discuss them, in person. This blog is for the ultra-interested and the fringe. The ones who check up now and again. The ones who want to know more.

We are happier to finally get the commentary. Much needed commentary.
Thank you, again. usual.

With new feelings being brought to light, I feel it is time to amend my comments, which, by some, were taken a bit beyond their intended meaning.

We have tried to do something special here, and we may or may not have done too much.

Asking for cover to pay bands, say, on a Wednesday night, has been a tough go because, as an ANONYMOUS commenter said, if the high quality band isn't there, the cover shouldn't be there either.

As far as Phog being a cash-grab band-hole, that is a bit heavy-handed...even on our most obvious of successful nights.

Point noted. We asked for too much. We supplied goods, but asked for you to pay for it. This has been on our minds for some time. This is certainly something we have noticed, and are changing because of its impact on general (regulars) attendance.

The most clear situation is that Phog is not alone in its plea for more bodies.
The arts community, as a whole, is much smaller than any of us could have imagined. It is a group of committed, interested, APPRECIATED people who have made this music scene what it is.
We bring the bands, you make them want to come back, and tell all their friends about it.
BUT, with the community in such a disconnect, art galleries, coffee shops, music venues, and more are in need of a uniting factor.
Free art openings, with FREE SNACKS AND BEVERAGES are attended like funerals, as if they were mandatory because you know the person on display.
Money is not the only issue for the fallen arts/music fans.
We need to make more people feel welcome to begin with.
We must invite more people into this community. How? Don't quite know yet.
But, the changes are in the works, and only good things will come from it.

For those of you who took our last posting to heart, personally, please look beyond yourself. We aren't clueless, and we know what has made Phog great. The community. Simple.
In order to properly appreciate and thank our crowds, we ask for suggestions, and we look forward to improvements. The suggestions are few and far between, except for the men's room requests...

Things have been going very well at Phog. Very well indeed. The concerns, and the cause for the impending changes are not a result of money issues. They are not because of slow nights when bands from out of town come here. They are a result of an awakening toward the group we serve, and love to serve.

The music venues in Windsor, all of them, take a hit during the week, with or without music. The topic of bands becomes extraneous. People aren't out AT ALL on the nights when attendance is poor at Phog. Generally, when attendance is poor at Phog, attendance sucks everywhere that shares our crowd. I realized this when planning the P.A. Festival with Tony at The Avalon, watching the absence of people at Sky Lounge, and Vermouth... Money isn't the issue, the lack of paticipating (drinking or non-drinking) customers, supporters of the arts, is the issue. We are so few. And this must change in order to breathe a bit of new life into this community.

To reiterate,if anyone took the previous post personally, we apologize. Clearly, some of the message was directed at a select few, a select few who know who they are because they HAVE SPOKEN TO US...TO OUR FACES. When there is no communication in a community, until a blog post draws a whiplash response, this is a sad reality. Communities are open. They are full of discussion and suggestion. They make the group stronger by pointing out the weaknesses and problems AS THEY OCCUR...not after fingers start getting pointed (figuratively and literally). This kind of communication must be constant, not explosive. Nobody benefits from explosive.

We look forward to more of your comments and suggestions.
By the way, thanks Anonymous for your comments. I think, if you re-read the posting, you may get a better sense of where I was coming from. "The attendance is less-than-stellar," and, "We hoped for, expected, assumed that if we brought the bands, the show-going public would come. What has happened, is that we have gotten a clearer picture of how many customers we indeed have, and how difficult it is to light a fire under the rear-ends of music lovers," means just that. Our crowd is small. In other cities, with smaller populations, their attendance is much more blatant. We have failed to open our doors wide enough. You have failed to share you thoughts with us sooner.


Friday, October 27, 2006

Enjoy it while it's here...

I feel the need to inform Phog-goers, the few of you who read this, about the change in scheduling (in general) for entertainment.
We have, for three years, done our best to bring the best product to the stage here at Phog, and we intend to tweak that tradition a little, while keeping the value high.
This month of November will be over-run with bands the first couple of weeks. It seems that we have said yes to too many bands, too many performers, without the vigor and excitement for these bands from all of the independant music fans.

So many shows, so few patrons. We hoped for, expected, assumed that if we brought the bands, the show-going public would come.
What has happened, is that we have gotten a clearer picture of how many customers we indeed have, and how difficult it is to light a fire under the rear-ends of music lovers.
Maybe it's because we have too much to choose from. Maybe we over-supplied our lovely patrons with musicians.
No matter what the reason, we do not have the ability, or the heart, to keep bringing in bands from across Canada with the frequency we now do, thanks to less-than-stellar attendance.

We intend to deliver high quality bands and performers on fewer nights.
No more 6 shows per week. No more 5 shows per week. Stronger acts, less of the time, yet still often.

In the meantime, we are going to do our best to grow our audience, as we think there are many people within our 210,000-population-city who can help us do better than 20 people at a show.

Unique partnerships with arts groups and other venues may be the answer. We'll see.
We look forward to this opportunity to invigorate the local music scene even more than we have already.

As always, we are welcome to the suggestions of others in regards to growing this community beyond the walls of Phog and other arts-related businesses.
With the talent we have access to, we want to eliminate the reason for our shows not being better attended on a regular basis.

Keep your eyes peeled for a strong November line-up. Will you be there? We don't know...but you might want to try to enjoy an event-jammed month before the frequncy of shows is tailored.

Thanks to everyone.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Windsor Live Music: Fest Success...P.A. Pretty Awesome

I cannot express the unbelievable thanks to all the bands that needs to go out...we are so indebted to the musicians, doormen, sound technicians, and general staff at Phog and The Avalon Front for making the first P.A. Music Festival a success.
We learned some things, and we have some new ideas for what might come next...but until then...the biggest thanks goes out to the fans of indie music who came to shows over the course of three nights. Thank you for making this worth doing.
And personally, I must thank Tony, Scott, and the staff at The Avalon Front for being overly-easy to work with and cooperate toward a common goal. Completely positive experience for me.

If anyone would like to see video of some of the bands, there are clips listed on
You should be checking this site anyway for Windsor updates on events and general happenings that we rarely get to hear about in our local media.

THANKS!! I cannot be more thankful to everyone! Damn those bands were amazing! And I missed The Golden Dogs AND Fjord Rowboat! Dammit!