These are the kids who remember Harvest Fest in the '80s -- when scenesters, hippies and metal kids alike threw flakes of marijuana in the air and watched police officers confiscate it for themselves. These are the kids who stapled hand-made band flyers to telephone polls in the snow and only knew each other's first names. They were Madison's "scene" in the days of Sonic Youth and Nirvana. And, as the self-proclaimed "aging hipster" Blunt Rapture puts it, "these are the people who aren't dead yet."
The Senior Scenester Potluck at the High Noon Saloon last Saturday drew about 50, well, "scenesters" to rock out, chill out, and talk about the good ol' days over a couple of beers. A handful of old-school local bands -- most missing a member or two -- signed up to play for the first time in years to a crowd of new and familiar faces and their families. Billy Seckman of Fahrenheit 453 even let his son, Will, fling his long, blond hair around on stage during their set. Later, another band took the stage as the lead singer screamed into the mic: "We are, and were, the Cutouts!"
According to Blunt, who said he once "ruled the scene," the potluck is a way to keep a part of Madison from dying. Madison is a place with ebbs and flows, he said, with the college kids who come and go every four years. "These people," he said with his eyes darting under thick black frames, "these people have history."
Voice of Blunt Rapture. Music recorded on-site from The Cutouts' set, Saturday, June 20, 2009.