published Monday, May 26th, 2014

Get Off The Couch: Mulling mustaches, Muppets and music

BARRY COURTER: Lisa, first, happy Memorial Day, and I hope you are enjoying your day off. I don’t know what you planned to do this week, but there is a mustache, I mean a band, playing at JJ’s Bohemia on Wednesday that is worth checking out.

LISA DENTON: Oh, I’ve already scoped out Leopold and his Fiction. When I heard lead singer and guitar player Daniel James was described as having the “hardest-working mustache” at South by Southwest, well, a girl can’t help but take notice.

BARRY: That thing does some heavy lifting, for sure. I watched a couple of videos and James didn’t always sport that ‘stache, but it’s a good one. And while it’s definitely the first thing you notice, the next is the surprising sound of his voice, which is pretty cool.

LISA: The Detroit native has also drawn notice for his “tongue-wagging guitar solos … and the pelvis-activating R&B of Motown’s finest.” That sounds like a show to see.

I also need to get over to Track 29 on Thursday. You might be surprised to hear that I, a white chick from Soddy-Daisy, have something in common with Waka Flocka Flame, a black rapper from Atlanta.

Let me explain. I took a quiz once to see which Muppet character I am most like, and the answer was Fozzie Bear … Whose catchphrase is “waka waka waka” … Which is where Waka Flocka Flame, born Juaquin Malphurs, got the nickname he uses in his stage name. See, we’re practically soulmates.

BARRY: You went ’round the way to get there, but you did it.

There is a lot going on again this week. Ester Rada is the Nightfall headliner on Friday. Check out her video for “Life Happens.” She has a Janelle Monáe thing going that I like a lot. The Bessie Smith Cultural Center is hosting a community yard sale Saturday called Bargains at the Bessie, and the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera is hosting a wine fundraiser that night at Renaissance Park called Uncorked. A little shopping, some wine. Sounds like a good day.

LISA: You know the secret to enjoying a bottle of wine is to open the bottle to let it breathe. If it doesn’t look like it’s breathing, give it mouth to mouth.

Waka, waka, waka.

Get event details every Thursday in ChattanoogaNow or online anytime at

Contact Barry Courter at or 423-757-6354. Contact Lisa Denton at ldenton@times or 423-757- 6281.

about Barry Courter...

Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...

about Lisa Denton...

Lisa Denton is deputy features editor and content editor of Current. She previously was a lifestyle, entertainment and region reporter/pod leader for The Chattanooga Times, which she joined in 1983. Lisa is from Sale Creek and holds an associate’s degree in journalism from Chattanooga State Community College. Contact Lisa at 423-757-6281 or

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