Looking ahead to 2012…

It’s that time of year my professional line of work (construction) tends to wind down a bit due to weather and, as the snowflakes fall, I want to recall a warmer, more enjoyable time of the year… Late-May.

Looking to Mays both past and ahead, just 168 days remain to departure for the 2012 Indy 500 trip. I begin to think about details and planning and improvements to the previous trip which leads to that monumental answer to the annual question that I cannot pose soon enough…


Monumental stuff to be sure as I have a fair group of people who are able only to come down for Carb Day and overnight, not the whole of the weekend. 

Plans must be made. Budgets combed through. Proper food and accommodation must be arranged. I take my trip and my hospitality VERY seriously. I also realize the band is very likely not selected at this point, so if the decision-makers are in the house, I’d like to offer my annual suggestions for Carb Day band selection, in no particular order…

On the heels of what was, in my opinion, a (maybe shouldn’t be, yet very surprisingly) great show by ZZ Top in 2010, my standard is found in a veteran touring band with musical chops, extensive catalog and popularity, and ability to easily rock the 19-49 year-old demographic equally. 

I submit for your consideration three HUGELY popular bands currently available in mid-2012:

1. Red Hot Chili Peppers

2. Pearl Jam


OK, so the third option was facetious but the point could be made that ABBA is equally attractive as your crapcore bands such as Papa Roach or other infamous representative markers of a genre, depending on the audience you are attempting to attract. A broad appeal is always better if sheer volume of traffic is your goal, HOWEVER…I would like to propose an idea which isn’t totally original yet would seem to be a great way to appeal to a more broad spectrum – adopt a single-day/festival approach. 

Instead of a single headline Carb Day band with smaller bands during the Month of May schedule, (of which most have a minor audience), bring that variety of bands (much as you have already) but allow them all to play on Carb Day. Two separate stage areas – one larger stage as we have today, and a smaller one down near the Turn 3-4 area. Have each of 4 to 6 bands play 60-75 maximum minutes with the two stages going concurrently. 

Two bands on the larger Miller Lite Stage is really no different than what exists today, with more popular (read: current) bands, one skewing to the younger set and one to the older demographics. On the smaller stage, incorporate other popular styles such as Jam Bands or other bands representative of different eras (read: Big Bad Voodoo Daddy as swing, etc.). IMS is certainly large enough to house two stages in this manner and the result is very likely a win-win as I see it.

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway has a rich and extensive history. To honor the many traditions and eras as possible on Carb Day would seem to make it a richer experience for more attendees, and also could very well be more lucrative for IMS by charging the paltry sum of $40-50 (or double what was charged in 2011 and 4 times the 2009 rate) for an ‘all-you-care-to-experience’ of Carb Day in the future.

2010 Carb-Day Band (non) Announcement

I have the skills of a master detective.  Actually more like approximately 65% of the average skills found with the average TV detective from the 1970s…  less the cool car. 

What I do have that resembles a 1970s TV detective, besides the penchant for bars with dark wall paneling and 11 mpg sport sedans, is a friend who survives below the radar that provides me with helpful information from time to time. This friend sourced to me two major places to go to find clearinghouse information on musical acts and their schedules: Pollstar and Tourtracker.

Armed with my latest research weapon, I perused and pursued any combination of search tag scrap that would produce a result.  I now don’t mind sharing these with everyone since the secret of the Carb Day band for 2010 appears to be on lock-down in a maximum security computer at IMS and (much like my favorite 70s era TV detectives) I lack the true ‘juice’ or contacts to elicit such information. My research therefore has been sufficient only to produce data for deductive reasoning, eliminating the acts who are already committed to the May 28, 2010 dates.

This I share with you so that the first person with any correct information you may have that leads to the confirmed band or bands to play the 2010 Carb Day, prior to the official IMS announcement of such concert, will garner you full and commensurate honors (a free premium beer or alcoholic beverage) at the campsite of yours truly for the 2010 Indy 500 weekend.  Here is the official list of those acts currently on tour who shan’t be performing Miller Lite Carb Day 2010:

Lady Gaga, Lady Antebellum, Black Eyed Peas, Bullet For My Valentine, Tim McGraw, Asleep at the Wheel, Angels and Airwaves, Eli Young Band, 3OH!3, Dave Matthews Band, Pavement, Steel Pulse, Michael Buble, Daughtry, Oak Ridge Boys, James Taylor, Eric Clapton, Bret Michaels, Little Big Town, Godsmack, Kiss, Coheed and Cambria, Wilco, Heart, CS&N, Elvis Costello, Montgomery Gentry, BoDeans, Bela Fleck, Mark Knopfler, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Carole King, David Gray, Lifehouse, Joe Bonamassa, NKOTB, Three Dog Night, ZZ Top, Barry Manilow, Diana Ross, Tesla, Deep Purple, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, moe., Steve Miller Band, Chevelle, Umphrey’s McGee, Indigo Girls, OK Go, Living Colour, Buckcherry, George Thorogood and the Destroyers, Manhattan Transfer, 1000 Foot Crutch, Barenaked Ladies, Gov’t Mule, Reverend Horton Heat (damn.), Saliva, The Glitch Mob, Cracker, Dark Star Orchestra, Steve Winwood, George Benson, David Sanborn, Gaelic Storm, Big Head Todd and the Monsters, Good Charlotte, Proclaimers, Pendulum, Paul Weller, Garaj Majal, Natalie Merchant, Duke Tumatoe (crap.) Cinderella, Sammy Kershaw, Dangermuffin, New Pornographers, The Damned, Cherry Poppin’ Daddies, Stone Sour, The Yardbirds, Naked Eyes, The Wailers, Michael Franti and Spearhead, Brad Paisley, Darius Rucker, Eve 6, Rusted Root, America, Buddy Guy, annnnnnnd (perhaps most disappointingly) AC/DC.

 Please note there are many others left off the list that I couldn’t recognize as any band of note and judging by their venue, not big draws anyway.  So there it is, the unofficial, non-announcement of Carb Day band for 2010. Sorry. What else is there to do for off-week, non-NCAA day of non-sports-news?