After a riotous and booze filled pre-party the night before, we awoke Friday morning with a vigor to explore Sturbridge that only a well earned hangover can provide. First on the agenda was to get some grub in our bellies. We ended up at Cracker Barrel (a true delicacy as we are deprived of it's deliciousness here on the west coast) with some good friends from San Francisco. I think we all ate our weight in biscuits alone. After our carb-fest breakfast, we all decided to hit the local antique shops to see if we could find any local scores.
Dollie knew of a shop that she visited from the previous year's event called, Vintage and Antique Textiles. They specialize in deadstock fabrics and vintage sewing supplies, along with a small but good selection of vintage clothing in the back of the store. The proprietor's impeccable organization of the fabrics in store really make this place shine. Categories include: barkcloth, floral prints, fruit and vegetable prints, rayon, border print, novelty print and the list went on and on! Be sure to check the place out when you visit the Shake-Up.
There was some great stuff in some of the other local shops as well. Including a Heywood Wakefield set of lounge chairs and table. And by California standards the price was a steal! You can bet they would have been coming home with us if they could fit in our carry-on! Prices were fair all around, and our pal Corinna snagged some great porcelain Asian figurines.
Back at the hotel it was time to start getting ready for the night's action. The ballroom was full of excitement and anticipation and The Lustre Kings (New York) did a heck of a job getting the show off to a rockin' start. The dancefloor started to fill with jivers and the cocktails started flowing. The weekend of music was officially underway and the mood couldn't have been more fun!
Next up for the evening was none other than The Outta Sites (Los Angeles). This was the boys' first time at the Shake-Up but their second year in a row touring the Boston area. Their growing East coast fanbase was excited to see them and we think they won some new fans as well. Being the only '60s band at a rockabilly fest isn't easy, but if anyone can pull it off it's The Outta Sites. Sadly, their go-go dancer was held up in Chicago and didn't make it. Us girls in the audiance had to dance twice as much to make up for it!
The Outta Sites also brought their brand new record with them, "Rock & Roll Dance Party." Be sure to grab yourself a copy, available through Bandcamp on CD as well as 180gram vinyl with a special "party colors" splattered pattern.
All the way from Canada, it's The Greasemarks! The Greasemarks put on one hell of a show, basically blowing everyone's minds. These young lads were rambunctious and full of energy. In the middle of the show they picked Dollie out of the audience and asked her to join them on stage to play the maracas for one song. That was sure the highlight of the night, at least for Dollie!
Dollie wore a green fringe dress from the 1960's. This dress was a home economics project and still had the original students name in it- Ginger Smith. She now calls this her Ginger dress.
The Modern Don Juans brought their driving brand of rockabilly from Texas and they certainly didn't disappoint. The 'Juans are a fantastic band that have played many of the top festivals and it was really great seeing them in New England. All the members are really nice guys and super talented.
Opening night at The New England Shake-Up was a smashing success that set the tone for the rest of the weekend. Unfortunately for us, we missed the last act of the night, Bloodshot Bill and the Hicc-ups. By that time in the evening we were in full party mode and got caught up chatting and drinking with good friends. Luckily we got to see him play the night before at the pre-party. Stay tuned for our ongoing Shake-Up coverage! Be sure to tell us what you thought about Friday night at the Shake-Up in the comments below.
Zack & Dollie