The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

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December 21, 2012

Rowskabouts to reunite for end-of-world show

JOPLIN, Mo. — The location is off, but the Rowskabouts will be keeping most of their promise.

"Before we went on stage for our last reunion show, we swore that we would never do this again," said Doug Dicharry, trombonist for the Rowskabouts. "As the show went on, I guess we said we would do one more show at the end of the world at Mother Nature's Crack."

Thanks to the Mayans, the end of the word is nigh. But because it's too hard to get extension cords to the crack, a beloved spot near Shoal Creek, they'll settle for the Kitchen Pass.

A host of former members will take the stage and play a few of the songs that they made popular in the '90s and early '00s. Though trumpeter Gene Herbert and tenor saxophonist Aaron Gilbert will not be able to make the show, a host of other members will, including Dicharry, drummers Tom Walters and Mike Weston, saxophonist Dale Benfield, trumpeter Adam Speer, singer John Gilbreth, bassist Robbie Corcoran and Seth Fletcher, a "badass drummer we brought in to play guitar," Dicharry said.

The band formed while several of the members were students at McAuley High School in 1995. Ranging from 14 to 16 years old, the band wrote what Dicharry called "some pretty ridiculous songs."

But those songs stuck as the years went by and as the band wrote new ones. The band's ska sound developed a loyal following and toured across the Midwest, including stops in St. Louis and Omaha, Neb. They were part of a lively ska scene that included local bands such as Big Bad Chubba and Hubcap.

Eventually band members moved to different areas, making keeping the band together too difficult. But the memories of playing together and spending time around Joplin during school days keep band members reuniting for shows.

"It's about reliving memories that people grew up with," Dicharry said. "I'm a huge story fan, and I like retelling our stories. It's almost like telling legends with how we've blown things out of proportion."

Dicharry said tonight's show will be a great night of memories and music. After tonight's show, provided the world still exists as we know it, band members will likely reunite again.

Maybe not a reunion show, though.

"I think next year, we'll just do a canoe trip," Dicharry said. "We don't need to play the songs we wrote when we were 15."

Want to go?

The Rowskabouts will perform at 10 p.m. today at Kitchen Pass, located at 1212 Main Street. Admission: $5. Details: 417-624-9095.

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