Cleveland. Kinda. Harder than Detroit to hate but they have more to offer than just empty buildings.
Kansas City? BBQ FOOL. I can’t hate KC for 2 other reasons too. Bo Jackson & a cool logo.
But even better than KC is Minneapolis. Have you been? Place is amaze balls. People are nice. Beer is good. And they like to get down. Any city that produced Prince, Charles Shulz and The Coen Brothers is ok by me. Here’s my top 5 reasons why I can’t hate on the Twin Cities, but not the Twins. I only need one reason to hate the Twins. Joe Mauer. #suckitmauer
Man. I wish, I so wish, I could wear this hat. But it’s the fucking Twins, fuck the Twins. It is a classic. Simple, yet so strong. As a designer, I love it. Shows pride. Unlike Chicago with our violent North vs South battle, the folks in MN decided 2 is better than 1. Which brings us to……
It’s a mantra. Having experienced it first hand a few times, people are just nicer. Maybe it’s because they are housebound for months on end, maybe they are just better people. I don’t know. But I do know that I got a serious friendly vibe in MN.
Atmosphere, Brother Ali & Rhymesayers Entertainment!
Back in the day I was convinced that I would enjoy California because most of the bands I liked were based in California. I lived there for 7 years, fucking spot on, besides the traffic. In 2003 I was introduced to Atmosphere. If you haven’t heard of them, wow, just wow. Go pick up When Life Gives You Lemons You Paint That Shit Gold, which is one of my favorite albums of all time. I have seen them live multiple times. Just a great show. My first show was in Long Beach, CA amazing. The second show was in Pomona, CA at the legendary Glasshouse with Brother Ali. Brother Ali is an albino Muslim who was raised in a black neighborhood. I had my doubts that first show, but goddamn, he kills it. I have seen them both perform in MN too, at their huge Hip hop show Soundset. Went two years in a row, pretty amazing.
In 2010, I met up with some friends at Brits. We drank on the roof and had a great time. I downed several pints of Guinness. The following year I found myself at Brits again and watched as person after person ordered some unknown beer. I made a comment to my brother-in-law about how this beer must be amazing and seconds after I said that a taster appeared in front of me. 6 pints later not only was I loving life but also drunk as hell. It was Surly Furious. Now you can get this all over the midwest, but back then you couldn’t. Shits amazing. A solid APA/ESB that I credit with really getting me into craft beer. Fresh is even better. Check these guys out if you get the chance, you can get 2 of their offerings at the Cell, Furious and Hell.
Do I have to explain? The guy wrote amazing lyrics and songs. He also plays better guitar than all other people combined. What more do you need? Plus his old club downtown First Avenue is just an amazing joint. Drug use and religion aside, the guy changed the game. He also had hometown pride. He NEVER left. He build his city up. Respect.