One Night Only: Milwaukee Car Clubs Benefit for Children’s Hospital
Hosted by the Milwaukee’s own Trouble Shooters Car Club at the South Milwaukee Knights of Columbus, the second annual Winter Shootout benefit for Children’s Hospital drew in a collection of car clubs, rock bands, and gearheads from all around Wisconsin and Illinois.
Brought together by the common good of raising money for the Children’s Hospital, and two dollar pints of Pabst Blue Ribbon, over two hundred were in attendance. Proud to show their support for the night’s cause and their hosts, Milwaukee car clubs such as the Drifters Classic Car Club, Memories, Losers, Wisco Maniacs, Hoodlums, Cambusters, and Cheaters, as well as the Chicago Natives, the Gasoline Dames Car Club and the Wreckless Social Club, were all in attendance.
Knowing just what makes a great party for the vintage car club crowd, the Troubleshooters provided a variety of entertainment with 50/50 raffles, door prizes, and a silent auction featuring such items as a six pack of PBR tall boys and vintage oil cans, neon signs and gift certificates from local businesses. In addition, three bands playing everything from rockabilly and garage rock to hardcore punk took the stage and wowed the crowd, helping make the second annual Winter Shootout an outstanding success according to Trouble Shooters organizer Jamie Gunderson.
Said Gunderson, “This was our first official event…I haven’t seen the counter but I think the turnout was three hundred plus. The turnout was phenomenal.”
Formed almost a year ago by former members of bands Tomorrow’s Yesterday and Less Than Popular, Streetcar Railroad brought to the Winter Shootout something more than a typical rock band. Influenced by a variety of styles such as Oi!, classic rock, hip-hop, punk rock, country, and rockabilly, no two songs by Streetcar Railroad sound the same. When asked to clarify what genre they play, the band unanimously agreed that they play rock’n’roll, pure and simple. Lead Vocalist, Andy Penneau was quick to clarify his thoughts on why Streetcar Railroad’s style is impossible to pinpoint: “I’d say rock’n’roll with an edge…we’re not just labeled as one thing, though. People ask, well what do you sound like. I say, we sound like Streetcar Railroad. Come to the show and check it out. That’s what we sound like.”
Playing tracks from their upcoming independent album, titled “From Rebellion to Reality,” Streetcar Railroad pleased the crowd with a diverse set of heavy and melodic rock’n’roll tunes. Following the closing of their set, many show-goers, especially car club members, approached the band and offered them praise for a job well done as well as an opportunity to perform at upcoming car shows and charity events.
After a lengthy delay from the silent auction, the much talked about Chicago rock’n’roll trio, the Dyes, finally took the stage to roaring applause. Playing a style reminiscent of legendary rock’n’roll and country figures such as Elvis Presley, the Cramps, Hank Williams, and Wanda Jackson, they are considered by most to be a rockabilly band but the band members disagreed. Bassist, Jill Olchawa clarified the band’s musical style.
“I don’t think we’re rockabilly. We’re more rock’n’roll with rockabilly influences. I’d say we’re more garage rock’n’roll.”
Despite confusion over their style amongst longtime fans, the Dyes quickly drew in a large crowd. With a gorgeous singer/guitarist and bassist, a maniac drummer, and an old school rock’n’roll sound that plays sweetly on the ears and sends a love letter to vintage America, the Dyes were the talk of the evening until the last guest went home.
For more vintage car and rock’n’roll fun this spring and summer, be sure to head down to the Cudahy Key Club’s 3rd annual Car and Cycle Cruise-in May 16th at Cudahy High School; the Rock’n’Roll Cruise-in May 17th in Fond Du Lac; the Memories Car Club’s Annual Car Show June 8th at Classic Lanes in Oak Creek; the Wisco Maniacs’ Blue Ribbon Beer Run at the historic Pabst Brewery July 12; and don’t miss the weekly car show every Wednesday at Gus’ Mexican Cantina in Franklin. All these events feature live entertainment, classic cars, beer and spirits, and benefit one of many charitable foundations such as the Wisconsin Humane Society and the ELIMINATE Project.