The Downtown Location continues to host Acousitc Night in our PUB every Thursday night, starting around 8 or 9pm.  The venue is free of charge and there is no purchase necessary to see a performance.

The following is an excerpt taken from the website of  Acoustic Night performer, “Austin Walkin’ Cane.   For more information, please see his site:

“Damn Fine Blues!” Original & classic delta blues featuring slide guitar and baritone vocals. A blues gumbo repertoire that blends in jazz, folk, soul & rock ‘n’ roll. Austin “Walkin’ Cane” Charanghat is a blues singer, songwriter and slide guitarist that performs acoustic solo, duo & electric band sets. Walkin’ Cane has travelled all over the country from New Orleans, Louisiana to Juneau, Alaska and has acquired various blues/instrumentalist awards over the years. Austin walked for ten years with a cane due to an arterial venous malformation at birth. While performing on Bourbon Street in New Orleans, a homeless man called out “Hey Walkin’ Cane got some spare change for a brother?!” Charanghat took the jibe as his nickname. In 1996, after years of battling the inevitable, his left leg was amputated below the knee. A year after the surgery, he returned to the music scene stronger & without need of a cane. In 2002, Austin & Karen Starks were married at Sun Studios in Memphis, Tennessee and began recording his 706 Union Ave. cd at the legendary studio immediately after the ceremony. “The thought of recording & getting married in the same room where many of my heroes took their first steps was incredible.” Austin “Walkin’ Cane” is proud to be sponsored by National Reso-Phonic Guitars, Dr. Z Amplifiers & Ernie Ball Strings.

“Walkin’ Cane’s” latest cd, “Murder of a Blues Singer”, was inspired by an after hour diner conversation with blues legend Robert Jr. Lockwood. “The stories were flowing like the grease off our plates”, subsequently the album is saturated in classic delta blues, as were the tales of Lockwood’s stepfather, Robert Johnson. Mr. Lockwood had agreed to perform on the record, but fate had changed that path. The Walkin’ Cane Band featuring Mike Barrick on bass, Michael Bay on guitar & Jim Wall on drums captured the perfect “live in the studio” feeling that Charanghat & co-writer Chris Allen had envisioned for these songs. The band is a “well oiled machine” & has been writing, recording & performing together since 1998. Special guests on “Murder of a Blues Singer” include Colin Dussault (Colin Dussault’s Blues Project), Eric “Eroc” Sosinski (Michael Stanley, Wish You Were Here) and one of Cleveland’s finest gospel groups, the Prayer Warriors.

Walkin’ Cane Accolades:

2009 – International Blues Challenge – Memphis, TN

2008 – NACA Northern Plains Showcase

2007 – NACA Mid-American Showcase

2007 – International Blues Challenge (IBC’s) in Memphis – acoustic, solo, delta, slide blues – sponsored by Blues, Jazz & Folk Music Society

2007 – best guitarist – cleveland free times magazine

2006 – National Reso-phonic Guitar CD Compilation “Love Grown Strong” – Walkin’ Cane original included.

2006 – River City Blues Competition Winner – acoustic solo delta blues – Blues, Jazz & Folk Music Society

2005 – sponsorship with National Reso-Phonic Guitars

2004 – sponsorship with Dr. Z. Amplifiers

2003 – live performance on PBS television show “Applause”

2002 – sponsorship with Ernie Ball Strings

2001 – best unsigned blues band – buddy guy’s legends/guitar player magazine – chicago

2000 – best local instrumentalist winner – the best of cleveland -

Columbus Traditional Blues Festival w/ John Hammond Jr., Henry Gray, John Primer – ‘07

International Blues Challenge – in Memphis – ‘07

Two Jr.’s Show w/ John Hammond Jr. & Robert Jr. Lockwood – ‘06

River City Blues Fest w/ Watermelon Slim, Fruteland Jackson, Slick Ballinger & Blind Mississippi Morris – ‘06

Opened for or performed with:
Bobby “Blue” Bland, Buddy Guy, Gregg Allman, Johnny Winter, John Mooney, Robert Jr. Lockwood, John Hammond Jr., Billy Branch, Jaimoe (Allman Bros.), Watermelon Slim, Rare Earth, Deep Purple, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Ted Nugent, BR549, Arc Angels, Nappy Brown…

best blues band / best vocalist / best guitarist – cleveland free times – 1999-2001, 2004-2008

2006, 2000 – best blues band finalists – scene magazine

The Downtown Location continues to host Acousitc Night in our PUB every Thursday night, starting around 8 or 9pm.  The venue is free of charge and there is no purchase necessary to see a performance.

The following is an excerpt taken from the Myspace page of  Acoustic Night performer, Brent Kirby.   See him live at the Pub inside Rascal House’s downtown location on Thursday September 30th, 2010

Brent Kirby is a night’s stroll with a rock n’ roll romantic. This does not mean Kirby’s merely a smitten troubadour, or a bard for the wayward but colorful life of musicians. Though his own songs bring up those immortal topics, Kirby’s romanticism is much bigger than that.

His songs start with the introspective stir of strum and voice, but not unlike his performances, gradually move outward, embrace the listener. There might be a melancholy shade to some of Kirby’s songs, but ultimately, they’re colored by faith, hope, and love. Those qualities are all in abundance on his solo record, Last Song On The Soundtrack. Last Song On The Soundtrack starts out with the laid back country-rock of “Silently Stepping Out”.

Kirby, having lived in places as varied as Chicago, Nashville, St. Louis, Milwaukee and Cleveland, has acquired a keen narrator’s eye. This optimistic ode might detail loneliness, but drummer JJ Juliano’s buoyant beat turns “Silently Stepping Out” into an anthem. Brent’s tells a honky-tonk tale of gigs upon gigs in “Dream The Night Away”, not as nightly grinds but as places where dreams really come to life in gritty color. “Lonesome Holiday” pays homage to Springsteen not merely in its arrangement, but also in its lyrical longing. Kirby’s “Truth Tonight” brings to mind “People Get Ready” and “Tupelo Honey” while adding the insistence of an uncertain lover. “Holding That’s Hard” showcases a bit of the rock he’s known for in the band he fronts, the Jack Fords; Al Moss’s distorted pedal steel sweeps through this jam like a long-lost Pink Floyd tune. This slow burner done, Kirby ends Last Song On The Soundtrack with the simply pretty “All I’ve Ever Wanted”. Tales are told, wishes are made, and when all’s said and done, “All I’ve Ever Wanted” lists the bounties of the soul. Not gold, not a “big ol’ chrome car to drive”, not fame, but the simple pleasure of deep and abiding companionship.

A similar emotion propels Kirby in a live setting as well. Solo, or with a band, he puts forth a heartfelt sincerity that’s been honed by countless gigs and a sheer desire for perfection.

The Downtown Location continues to host Acousitc Night in our PUB every Thursday night, starting around 8 or 9pm.  The venue is free of charge and there is no purchase necessary to see a performance.

The following is an excerpt taken from the website of recent Acoustic Night performer, ZACH.

“You can’t act like you’re having this much fun.” Indeed, it is no act. It is nothing less than a genuine love for music. This love shows in everything the seasoned artist does, especially his high-energy shows, which frequently send people into “Zach Attacks” – uplifting moments where people are compulsively risen out of their seats by the passion to dance, sing, cheer, or scream out. “I love reaching people. I know I’m doing my job when people come up to me and say ‘I’m kicking drugs,’ ‘I’m quitting a job I hate to do something I’ve always wanted to do,’ ‘Your music has helped my autistic child become more sociable and make major progress with his condition,’ or ‘Your music has helped me get through some bad times, or Cancer or something, or has turned around a bad day.’ That is why I sing. How could you not put all of your passion into that?”

Zach’s newest CD, Face With a View, released in the summer of 2005, is certainly flowing with this passion. Though he has self-released three prior CD’s, this newest one is his crowning achievement. “This record was the first that I really took a good deal of control over, and so I was able to really communicate more so than in my previous recordings. The growth I’ve gone through over the last three years is incredibly prevalent. The songs I chose this time needed to fit the concept of a very genuine and sincere emotional cycle that I felt the record needed to portray.” Its true beauty is in soulful simplicity. The title was chosen to fit this cycle as a reminder that there is beauty everywhere, even if it has to be actively sought at times. Zach was accompanied by the living bass legend, Jeff Berlin, on a song called “Girl in the Corner.” “Jeff was perfect for this song. Because of his feel and technical abilities as well as his interest in the pop music world, I knew he could take the song to another dimension of beauty and innate communication with his extraordinary melodic bass style.” The first single, “Distracted,” brought in producer Michael Seifert (Guided by Voices, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony), drummer Joe “Coach” Hanna (Toby Lightman, Gavin DeGraw), and Billy Sullivan (the Raspberries) to fully augment this proven popular hit. “I thrive on all environments that challenge both myself and everyone around me to grow. Working on this record has been this way, which is why it captured my intents so successfully.”

Zach is no stranger to touring. He performs over 200 shows a year, taking him all over the country, and placing him on stage with Chicago, Bad Company, Catie Curtis, Maia Sharp, Steve Poltz, Rick Springfield, Rusted Root, Farm Aid, Jen Chapin, Michael Bolton, and Buckwheat Zydeco. His exciting, high energy shows and spiritually emotional material have gathered a devoted following and give Zach the ability to win-over and move audiences both in and outside of his genre. “People want to be entertained, but you can’t always be mindlessly entertained. That only goes so far and only fulfills so much. You need substance too.” The coffee shop scene permitted Zach the opportunity to begin and grow as a performer, and he still gravitates toward the more intimate settings. “I love to rock out and dance around! Anytime. But songwriter shows, especially the New York Songwriter Circle at the Bitter End, are so fundamentally based on the song and not the show and are mentally very gratifying. It is so inspiring to be on such a legendary stage with peers on both sides of your career, learning from them. You never stop learning. It’s one of my favourite aspects of life.” Zach is being dubbed a role model for the echo-boomer generation, though he is very appealing to all age groups. His fan-focused approach to performing and promoting, which includes the widely popular “Zach Pack Newsletter,” has earned him a growing and dedicated fan base, resulting in, among other things, his website, receiving around 30,000 hits each month. Zach’s heavy performance schedule has also awarded such accolades as #3 All-Time Best Artist as nominated by the 20,000 listeners of WAPS 91.3 FM The Summit in Akron , Ohio and a Finalist in the Soul City Café Music Quest sponsored by pop-star Jewel.

“I’ve always been drawn to writing and reading.” Zach is not only a highly prolific songwriter, with over 200 songs in only four short years, but an accomplished fiction writer, too. A short story Zach wrote as a senior in high school, “Bolero,” won 6th place in the New Century Writer’s Award, was a finalist in a Francis Ford Coppola/Zoetrope Magazine writing contest, and was read at the Nation Undergraduate Literature Conference in Utah . “I’m inspired by everything, especially things that are artistically and culturally enhancing — that really brings out the best in my creativity.” In addition to this, he has finished two novels, which he plans on releasing in the future. “Who knows, maybe someday, I’ll be doing the soundtrack to the movie of the book I wrote. But really, happiness is simply singing my songs to people, changing the world one minute, one life, at a time.”

“’You must be the change you wish to see in the world’”.

Truly, a breath of fresh air.
Best Singer/Songwriter, a 3 time winner of Best Pop Act in the Cleveland Music Festival, 2 Golden Viking Awards, Best Singer/Songwriter Nominee in the Free Times Music Awards 5 times, Best Pop Song (; over 2,500 Spins on WAPS 91.3 The Summit; was a finalist in the national Soul City Café Music Quest; a finalist in the Unisong Song Contest; receives over 150,000 hits and growing per month on the website, and over 83,000 views on his MySpace; named in the TOP 3 Artists spun on WAPS 91.3 The Summit Radio (6 places above the Beatles); performs over 200 shows a year nation-wide, had his song “On Christmas Morning” spun on over 130 radio stations; wrote the jingle/theme song for the nationally syndicated radio show “Into the ‘70’s with Tom Kent;” had music featured in several independent films and an Extreme Home Makeover Documentary.

ZACH Attacks:

“Zach is an awesome talent! John Lennon’s compassion courses through his veins.  I’m very impressed with this kid and believe he is a star!  He is also a down to earth, level headed decent human being willing to do whatever it takes to make it.  Also, I’ve seen him live and he’s just as good live as his recorded presentation and a charmer as well.”   — Tom Kent, Elektra Records

“ZACH’s performance is in a word, INCREDIBLE!  I have never seen a solo performance like it.  If you’ve never seen one of his solo shows you gotta go.” — Rick Reich, Rudedog Music Promotions
“If Zach’s intension was capturing the power of his live show, he succeeds on 1.19.2007.” — The Cleveland Plain Dealer

“The very definition of ‘working musician,’ Zach performs more than 200 shows a year, playing onstage with both classic and contemporary performers … Zach channels smart and sensitive James Taylor-esque lyrics and melodies, peppered with the contemporary zing of Gavin DeGraw or Jason Mraz.  His spunky live shows are mostly Zach originals, and his goose-bump-inducing cover of john Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ is worth the price of admission.”  — Bill Gruber, Program Manager, 91.3 WAPS The Summit

“Zach’s music is pop/rock at its best, with catchy hooks and insightful, clever lyrics. At times, Zach sounds like James Taylor, others like “80’s group Crowded House. But through it all, he is forging his own unique sound that is getting attention.” — Tim Busbey, Ashland Times-Gazette

“He’s (Zach) very cool. I think “Distracted” is my favorite one. I also love the guitars in “Son Of The Circus.”  Nice and crunchy. I hope it does well. He definitely deserves to be heard.” — Maia Sharp

“ZACH has exceptional talent and I’d like to see him make it all the way.  I think he will.  And that’s why I’m here [performing on stage with ZACH].” — Jeff Berlin

“Zach is a seasoned musician and a great songwriter” — Jeff Niesel, Cleveland Free Times

“We did that kids show, which was great. He was great! He was dancing on the stage. The kids were loving him! He was very animated. I really enjoyed having him on that show. And his album is great — in the groove!”  — Johnny Ciao, legendary Culinary Rocker and chef of the stars

“I love his voice.” — Brett Dennen

“What’s clear is that people loved Zach’s stuff. We received emails and message board postings from people who are blown away by his  work. His music has touched many lives through this competition and we’re all very grateful for his participation. Soul City Cafe is extremely proud of its association with Zach.” — Ken Calhoun, Soul City Cafe

“He has released a pair of good albums, and his better-than-average songwriting — emotional, witty and surprisingly kinetic folk-pop …he carries himself with soul and elegance.” — Ed Bumgardner Relish staff writer

“I enjoyed listening to the CD … someone will recognize his talent.” — Dick Clark

“The CD (A Beautiful Possession) is excellent and a unique blend of acoustical showcases, lyrical magic and hard rockin’ electric guitar and drums. His soft voice has immense range and depth and his well-written lyrics are clearly understandable on every track.” — Mary Kosiniski, Kent Record-Courier

“I put local CDs we get in the changer with four national discs to see if the local one stands out… when I heard Zach’s, I had to take (the CD) out and see whose it was. I said ‘Wow, this is really good. Who is this guy?’” — Bill Gruber, Program Director 91.3 WAPS The Summit

“Zach performed its unique, simple-but-confident tunes, the crowd jumped, laughed and swelled to at least twice its original size. With each succeeding song, bodies pressed closer to the stage and closer to one another as the steady beat overtook their minds and limbs. Not one person stood still… As the players wound down and announced their last song, the crowd cheered and begged for more…’The band performed beyond my expectations,’ said senior and Student Activities Board officer Erik Butcher.”
–Rachel Womelsduff, Collegian Reporter

“Zach has the quiet intensity of Elliot Smith.” — Jeff Neisel, Cleveland Free Times

“The title track (Turquoise Dreams) and “Invisible Man” are songs that make you feel like you are experiencing brilliance on the rise.” — Mike Farley, Michael J. Media Promotions

“Zach’s not just good for his age; he’s just good.” — David Martin, Cleveland Scene Magazine

“Zach… brings his blend or rockin’ folk-pop songs and love on the rocks ballads for an evening of awesome entertainment.” — Jeff Smith, Relish Magazine,  Winston-Salem, NC

“This young poet puts his mindful, sensitive, yet hip lyrics to catchy, toe-tapping groves that uplifts audiences, while making them think at the same time.” — Tommy Bruno, GM 91.3 WAPS The Summit

“He’s electric…enter Zach and everyone lights up” — Tom Kent, Elektra Records


  • 2001 Farm Aid
  • Chicago
  • Michael Bolton
  • Richard Thompson
  • Bad Company
  • Don Dixon
  • Steve Poltz
  • Shawn Mullins
  • Michael Glabicki (of Rusted Root)
  • Vanilla Fudge
  • Catie Curtis
  • Bo Diddley
  • Sonny Geraci
  • Maia Sharp
  • John Eddie
  • Jen Chapin
  • Michael Stanley
  • America
  • Mountain
  • Buckwheat Zydeco
  • The Fixx
  • Kyle Vincent
  • Johnny Ciao
  • Damien Horne


1.     Born May 13th, 1981

2.     Birthplace: Parma , Ohio

3.     Astrological Sign: Taurus (Celtic Tree Sign: Poplar)

4.     Eyes: Blue     Height: 6’1”

5.     Favourite Foods: Rice, Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches

6.     Favourite Colours: Black, Red, Green

7.     Lifestyle: Non-Smoker, Non-Drinker, Non-Drugs

8.     Books that Changed My Life:

*Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke – the most inspirational thing I have ever read. Every word was written to me for me. Kevin Spacey referred this book to me, and I am more focused and defined in my music, art, and vision because of it.

* Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll –  the first book I ever read over and over and over again. It single-handedly began my interest in words and word play. The more times I read it, the more inspired I get.

*White Nights (Memoir of a Dreamer)/ the Brothers Karamozov by Dostoevsky – The most beautiful words I have ever read. A lot of my writing is a description, or emotion, or description of emotion. I wish I could someday do it all well as it is done here.

9.     Favourite Authors: Kurt Vonnegut, Fyodor Dostoesvsky, Gogol, Kafka, Albert Camus, Tom Robbins, Woody Allen, Bob Frissell

10. What brought Me to Music: 3 things:

*Appendicitis – I nearly died from a ruptured appendix, and the recouping time dashed my hopes of making the high school basketball team. During the time I was in the hospital, I had gotten a gift of a Beatles cassette and the Best of Queen CD. By the time I came out of the hospital, I had wanted to learn to play guitar and had already begun writing songs.

*Jewel – I fell in love with her debut album, and saw her at an intimate venue outside of Cleveland , Ohio . The show was so moving to me, and she communicated her music and personality so well to the audience, it felt like the show was a personal one just for me. When I left, I knew I needed to be performing and seriously making music for the rest of my life.

*High School Talent Show – I knew I was onto something good, when I had the sell-out 1,000 seat venue screaming and singing along with my own song. Then a huge fight and riot erupted. The police came. And I continued singing. The power of music!

11. My Fiction Writings: I’ve always been drawn to writing. My short story, Bolero: won 6th place in the 2001 New Century Writer Awards, was entered into a competition with Zoetrope Magazine and Francis Ford Coppola where it was a finalist, and was read at the National Undergraduate Literature Conference in Utah for the same year. I have also finished two novels.

12. Radio Writings: I wrote the jingle/theme song “Into the ‘70’s” for a syndicated oldies radio show created in Cleveland , Ohio that is currently on over 150 stations and counting!  It has been my first adventure into writing music for platforms other than pop music. And it has been hugely successful.

13. Pets: I have an adopted Humpback Whale named Patches that lives in the Atlantic Ocean , and a little black cat named Zero.

14. I believe it is our responsibility to change the world for the better, to add meaning and value into life and culture. That sounds naïve, but it is very easy to change the world for a few minutes, or to change someone’s world for a few moments. It’s as the saying goes, “The journey of a million miles begins with a single step.” We must all “be the change we want to see in the world.”

15. Why “Face With a View?” We are always looking at beautiful things. To realize this is to truly feel. The music follows this whole theme. You should listen to the disc in its entirety. The answer is there, waiting. The answer is always the easy part.

Hip hop is one of the most popular genres of today’s Billboard charts
- it is a major part of the cultural world we live in. Although
today’s youth are often attracted by the braggadocio and “bling” of
top rap hits, there is a rich history behind the music.

Hip hop’s roots originated in the poverty and crime stricken South
Bronx, NYC in the 1970. The founders of the movement consider hip hop
to be defined as a broad term that describes a culture, which includes
dance (breakdancing), music (DJing/beatboxing), words (rapping), art
(graffiti), as well as specific fashion trends and slang. Originally
strictly party music, rap began as nothing more than short, simple
rhymes shouted out by the host of a party as the DJ rocked the house
with funk, soul, Motown, reggae, and R&B records. Once the star of the
party, eventually the DJ took second stage to these rappers who
developed longer and more complex rhymes. Dancers got in on the
creative spirit as well, and they would often compete for crowd
approval during extended “breaks” of songs. DJs eventually finessed
their skills into the art form of turntablism, perfecting scratches
and blending multiple records at the same time to impress the party

Hip hop today at its best has evolved into a complex culture. The
lyrics of modern hip hop often carry double meanings / messages in the
same tradition as spirituals; challenge yourself to look beyond the
surface and to dig deeply into this amazingly creative music and come
to appreciate it as an art form. Some talented rappers can sustain
double and triple entendres, extended metaphors, and purposeful
mispronounciation of words to blur meaning – all in a freestyle improv
reminiscent of the greatest jazz players.  Talented DJs and producers
embark on a quest for beats without genre discrimination, seeking
fresh music from unusual sources – Broadway musicals, commercial and
television themes, obscure blues records, heavy metal, and Bollywood
tunes. Listen to the radio – hip hop is full of samples of all styles.
It is not always easy to open our ears but we MUST, and perhaps come
to appreciate the history of one of today’s most popular genres.

I must admit, after living in New York City for many years, the site of a celebrity got pretty normal.  I’ve seen every from Beck to Lou Reed to Billy Crystal to Luis from Sesame Street out and about at the supermarket, in the park, or just walking down Avenue A.  I even had the great fortune to deliver a Mauviel Copper Pot set straight up to the assistant of Princess Diana of Wales in her room atop the Park Plaza bordering Central Park.

I’ve been void of the celeb factor for several years now, hunkering down here in Akron, Ohio raising a family and doing things “right”.  Coming from a punk-like background, having toured the country with so-so bands who play hard and “play” even harder , I have a “thing” for thing for that kinda scene – I miss that kind of life sometimes, and my imagination loves to put me back in the middle of it when I let it wander.

In the morning, every morning, after my dear husband goes off to work, I pack up the 5 year old and the 3 year old and we drive in the ol’ MV (that’s minivan to those who aren’t cool enough to know) to the local elementary school to resume his career as a second grader.  On the way, we see people in their cars, on the first leg of their morning commute, housewives dropping off kids, kids waiting for busses or sometimes, if we’re lucky, we see the early morning runners.  One such runner regularly catches my eye as he doesn’t appear to be the typical suited up, wearing $125 sneakers and a gym suit runner, he’s wearing cut offs, Converse low-tops and a sweat stained shirt that is clearly on its way out.

One particular morning, I saw him coming and maybe it was the heat of the morning or just waking up out of a long Ohio winter … but this song was on the radio and I swear it matched his moves… like something out of a 70s movie, for just a minute he was running towards me, with the breakdown of this tune in the soundtrack of his mind and mine:

Whoooaaaa … almost ran through that red light!

(As it turns out, the guy running is actually Dan Auerback OF the Black Keys, Akron’s current love child(ren).  Who knew I would ever be 36 and star struck?)