It’s the edge of September, that darkling time of year when strange figures step out of densely forested hinterlands, far from civilization’s comforting bright. In the wilds of East Tennessee, it’s a time when the dread Skunk Ape — aka the Stink Ape, aka the Swampsquatch, aka the Myakka — emerges from the dank sanctuary of his wooded lair.
This year, though, it seems that the Swamp Ape will receive a special visit from his bigger and better-known cousin. That’s right; Bigfoot, King of all cryptids, is visiting not only East Tennessee, but Knoxville, and Scruffy City Hall.
But leave the bear traps and blunderbusses at home. Because the Big Guy will be visiting via the Sept. 16 premiere at Scruffy City Hall of “Bigfoot the Movie”, a comedy-horror film in the grand tradition of “Shawn of the Dead” and “Dale and Tucker vs. Evil,” etc. etc., starring “America’s Top Model” finalist Joanie Dodds, co-starring and directed by Pennsylvania native Jared Snow, both of whom are expected to make an appearance.
Bigfoot will be in the movie too, we think, most likely playing himself. Don’t know whether he’ll show, however… Other commitments and such.
The film stands not only as a zany mullets-and-monsters comedy, but also as sort of a cheeky love letter to Snow’s hometown. “Bigfoot the Movie” was shot entirely in and around Ellwood City, Penn., a scrappy, Scruffy little burg about 30 minutes out of Pittsburgh proper.
That’s not the only news coming out of Scruffy City Hall on the cusp of autumn 2015. Look for the new Scruffy Science CinePub 6000, one Wednesday out of the month at SCH. SCCP6 is Knoxville’s homespun answer to the Comedy/SyFy channel ’90s classic Mystery Science Theater 3000, and the showings will feature members of the Scruffy City audience fulfilling the roles of Joel, Tom Servo, et al.
And you probably already know that local neo-blues-rawkers the Dirty Guv’nahs are calling it quits after a hard-fought nine-year run, cashing in their chips with a couple of going-out-of-business shows, Sept. 19 at the Bijou and Sept. 25 at the Tennessee Theatre. What you don’t know yet is that SCH will host blowout after-show parties both nights, an opportunity for hardcore Guv’nahs fans to share a shot of whiskey or three with James Tremble and Cozmo and Kevin Hy and the rest of the gang, ere they head off into a sunset of new musical adventures. (As to the latter, please see “Electric Darling,” the new project with Cozmo and Hyfantiss and powerhouse frontwoman Yasameen Hoffman-Shahin.)
Other goings-on: Bill Foster, our resident shutterbug, will enjoy his annual birthday bash (not saying which one) Sept. 24 with Ian Thomas and the Band of Drifters and the Tim Lee 3. Don’t be shocked if mssr. Foster gets on stage, too — he plays a little gee-tar, now and again, when he’s not busy snapping pics of other people doing the same.
And bleeding into October, Americana stalwarts the Black Lillies — arguably Knoxville’s best export, especially with the passing of the aforementioned Guv’nahs — will play at the release party for their forthcoming fourth album, Friday, Oct. 2 on Market Square. Given that the forward thrust of the Lillies’ career momentum continues to build — even with the departure of a longstanding member or two — this could be one of the biggest events in Square history.
We’ll have more on the Lillies show next time, when Scruffington Post rolls out again in a couple of weeks (for realz). In the meantime, enjoy a Belgian Sour Apple from Cold Fusion Brewery (see accompanying article) at Scruffy City Hall. And please bear in mind that cryptids need love, too.