This week is my last with Juice and the Register. To close things out, here are my 12 favorite music-related moments from my 10 years with Juice.
1. Hank Williams Jr gets political. Midway through an impressive show at the Iowa State Fair, country legend Hank Williams Jr. let loose with "We've got a Muslim president who hates farming, hates the military, hates the U.S. and we hate him!" This was in the midst of the 2012 presidential campaign and suddenly my review was being quoted by the Village Voice, USA Today, Huffington Post and lots of other sites. Thanks, Hank.
2. The Envy Corps at the first GDP. There was just something electric about every show that night, but TEC took things to another level.
3. Dead Horse Trauma's Juice cover. After a 2009 show at House of Bricks, the metal band presented me with a mocked-up Juice cover featuring them. It took a bit, but I finally got the band on there for real.
4. Life is like a half-eaten box of chocolates. After I wrote a cover story on heavy metal, an unnamed individual sent me a box of chocolates, a bite taken from each one, with a note saying "Disappointment sucks, doesn't it?" I kept that up on my office wall for years.
5. The La Strange hatchet video. In 2011 I was doing a video interview with Brenton Dean of La Strange (now of Holy White Hounds) and midway through he pulled out a hatchet. Then we went into his yard and he spent way too long trying to throw that hatchet into a tree.
Brenton Dean of La Strange shows off his hatchet throwing "skills."
6. The time Van Holmgren saved 80/35. He knows what he did, I just felt like it should be acknowledged.
7. Slipknot at Wells Fargo Arena. Iowa's biggest band at the state's biggest venue was something to behold. Plus, it was Paul Gray's last hometown show.
8. David Byrne at the Des Moines Social Club grand opening. The Talking Heads frontman showed he wasn't the love 'em and leave 'em type, returning to kick off a new entertainment hub for Des Moines.
Former Talking Heads frontman delivers keynote speech at Des Moines Social Club grand opening
9. Taking Richie Daggers to the Iowa State Fair. The DJ had never been to the fair, but I managed to drag him out to get his reaction to the Ying Yang Twins show there.
10. Jeff Mangum at Maximum Ames. After a great first year, Max Ames shot for the moon in 2012, landing the reclusive Neutral Milk Hotel frontman. The concert was simply amazing.
11. Watching Mumford & Sons (and friends) record a Daytrotter session. After their show in Waverly, I got to watch an intimate recording session with more musicians than audience members.
12. My feud with $trick9. Early on in Juice I wrote a profile on the faux conservative rapper and things got meta when Nick Strickland's rap persona created a very NSFW diss track defending his right-wing credentials. If your Google-fu is strong you might find a video of me rapping my response. We've become friends, but since I have the last word: Nick Strickland sucks.