Get Off the Couch: Riverbend, Strut, Bonnaroo hitting high gear

Get Off the Couch: Riverbend, Strut, Bonnaroo hitting high gear

June 10th, 2013 by Barry Courter and Lisa Denton in Life Entertainment

BARRY COURTER: Lisa, Riverbend leaves the 21st Century Waterfront tonight and heads over to M.L. King Boulevard for the Bessie Smith Strut. Like last year, the Strut will be a gated event, which is a sad testimonial to the world today, but what are you going to do?

I've become a big fan of the headliner, The Pimps of Joytime, and their cool, '70s funk vibe.

LISA DENTON: You know, we could almost watch the show from our desks, but then we'd miss the groove. And that would be a shame. These dudes have got some soul.

I like, too, that the band is doing the Artist of the Day appearance at noon and then the Bend Unplugged program at 1 p.m. today, both at Lindsay Street Hall.

BARRY: I hope more people take advantage of those programs all week. I don't know of any other festival that does anything like them. They are free, and you get to hang out with and, in most cases, meet the artists in a very intimate atmosphere. You see a completely different side of them.

Part of what The Pimps will be doing this afternoon is talking about making it in their home of Brooklyn.

LISA: Plus, they'll be talking with some young musicians, the Stars of Chattanooga. That's sure to make an impression.

Besides tonight's Strut, there's still five nights of music at the riverfront with Newsboys, Dierks Bentley, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Gavin DeGraw and O.A.R. headlining the Coca-Cola Stage over the next few days, plus dozens of other acts on the side stages.

And don't forget Bonnaroo starts Thursday in Manchester, Tenn.

BARRY: Oh, I've got the air mattress and tent packed up and ready to go. I'll leave for Manchester early Thursday morning, have my campsite set up by noon and start posting updates on our website, as well as Facebook and Twitter. I'll also have a story in each day's paper.

I'm really looking forward to seeing Paul McCartney again on Friday. I say again because we were technically in the same building once, and he was performing. I was on the very back row of the Georgia Dome. He looked to be about a half-inch tall.

LISA: Maybe you can use your charm and good looks to get closer to the stage this time.

BARRY: I'm willing to try anything to see Macca up close, but I'm going to bet so is everyone else. All 90,000 or so. Have you ever seen those old film clips of the girls screaming at a Beatles show? That will be me on Friday. It's going to be tough to do that and remain professional.

Get event details every Thursday in ChattanoogaNow or online anytime at

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