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The Best of 2012: Highlights from the year in local music, from the movers and shakers who made it happen

A look back at the last year in local music.



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Jody Hendrix (Them Damned Young Livers)

"2012 got intense for me personally, as I took over the booking for Club 906. There were a lot of naysayers spouting off about how live music wouldn't do well in the Northland. I think we proved them wrong with several amazing shows. At the top of the list is the COA/Mac Lethal show on October 12.

"Another personal highlight for me was The Pitch Music Showcase. It was where I first saw Radkey. They're the best new band in KC, hands down."

Lori and Doug Chandler, owners, Take Five Coffee + Bar

"There was no conflict between the two of us over which two experiences this year really struck us as transcendent. One was a show at the Brick on September 5: Snuff Jazz and the Mike Dillon Band featuring Carly Meyers. We had no idea who Carly was, had never heard of her. Wow, what a wonderful freak. She just tore the room to rubble with the wacky energy and intensity of both her dancing and her trombone playing. A perfect foil for someone like Dillon.

"The other was at our place, Take Five Coffee + Bar, on August 9, with Parallax. What an amazing band Stan Kessler has put together to showcase some of his more adventurous compositions. It's Stan on trumpet, Roger Wilder on piano, Bill McKemy on bass and both Ryan Lee and Brian Steever on drums. Ryan and Brian are two of the most talented and creative young drummers anywhere. And being close friends and roommates for years, they seem to share the same brain, tossing grooves back and forth and finishing each other's sentences musically. This night was Ryan's last in town before moving to Albuquerque to teach at New Mexico State, so everyone was especially 'on,' and the show was riveting from the first note to the last."

Molly Gene (One Whoaman Band)

"The best show I saw in KC was at the Riot Room for Larry and His Flask — raw energy and a packed house. The best moment happened at one of my shows at the Slap-n-Tickle Gallery. There was a pregnant burlesque girl dressed as a cow. She was twirling her udders around and eating a hamburger. I laughed so hard. I knew I was in the right place."

Brock Potucek (Lazy, South Bitch Diet)

Best shows: "FOKL hosting Light Asylum (November 4). Total last-minute planning. They said that it was the first DIY show they've played in two years. Great turnout. KAW Collective, another KCK spot, had a short run of great touring acts that I booked, like Molly Nilsson from Germany and Frustrations from Detroit. They are getting a new space, so more goodies to come. And King Tuff and Nü Sensae at Replay Lounge — two great bands for three bucks. Lazy got to play with King Tuff earlier this summer, and it was cool to meet back up. He [King Tuff] is wearing a Peggy Noland 69 jersey daily now."

Robert Moore, host, Sonic Spectrum

"My favorite nonlocal show was Shearwater at RecordBar — amazingly intimate show. My favorite local show was the Dealer's Choice Sonic Spectrum tribute, a sort of birthday present to myself and listeners. Some of the finest musicians in KC covered many of my favorite songs by other artists. Steve Tulipana performed Iggy Pop's 'Endless Sea' with Mark Lowrey and Jeff Harshbarger. Soft Reeds covered Devo's 'Gates of Steel.'

"Best reason to be excited about the KC scene: Radkey."

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