Sunday, June 7, 2009

Jim "Tilden" Brown vs. the Wine Cellar

There's a flamey little internet mini-war brewing between longtime local bluesman Jim "Tilden" Brown and his former regular venue the Wine Cellar. Looks like the booking agent at the Cellar neglected to include Mr. Brown on the summer schedule and he's feeling a twinge over bitterness about that. He's been posting nasty-grams on his MySpace and on Craigslist telling customers to boycott the downtown Cd'A wine bar/restaurant.

I called the Wine Cellar to ask their side of this very public drama and whoever I spoke with just sighed and said tersely "We have nothing to say about that, thanks." To be honest, I don't really have an opinion in the matter, but I do find the whole thing somewhat amusing so I thought I'd share.

This was the original bulletin posted on MySpace:


DO NOT SUPPORT " THE WINE CELLAR" in Coeur d' Alene, Idaho. Unfair wages, treatment and a bitchy manager (Summer) who handles the booking with no idea how long or hard the musicians have worked ( I performed 14 years for them, 2 times a month and she thought I had been there a couple years)....very unorganized and a real disappointment!!

-Jim Tilden Brown
To which someone replied, apropos of nothing:

I always wanted to set up a full Marshall stack in that room just to wake those posh wine drinkers the fuck up!
But why bother?

-Working Spliffs
Mr. Brown left another vicious rant on Craigslist in the "Musicians" category, but it must have been flagged for removal. I can't find it. However, someone posted a little comeback, which stayed on the board:

You flame the Wine Cellar...Summer..and then you put your picture up...and your MySpace address?

Wow. Seriously, never met you, but after playing ANYWHERE for 15 years, if you are a "professional", don't you think its a bad idea to badmouth and flame your employer / former employer on a public forum? Kinda makes you look bitter and jaded. Take it up with the Wine Cellar. Why bitch on Craigslist? Please, e-mail and let me know what was going on there at Wine Cellar for you to post this rant if you like. I'm listening...whats up with the Cellar?

The next day, Mr. Brown seems to have ignored that particular screed in favor of a little damage control and self-promotion.
The Best Solo act in Northwest
TILDEN BROWN.......Coming back on Tour soon!!!
Stay in touch!!
A few dates left available, contact ASAP!
The best solo act in the Northwest, eh? Wow, that's pretty boastful, especially for someone who spends winters in Arizona and spring in Branson, Mo. I'm not sure how many venues will be jumping at the chance to book a guy that posts public rants about his former venues, but at least he's got a big enough ego to face the challenge.


Anonymous said...

Well Mr. PJ...sounds like it's time for part 2 so as no half truths....and I don't use no "drum machine" or cheezy backing tracks here!! At least I have the balls to stand up for what is right and wrong in dealing business in this business and not working for beer money and puttin up with waitresses who double as booking agents...I have earned the right to express myself in what ever public forum I choose...I am a U.S. Airforce veteran and a damn good musician / entertainer, The best solo act in CDA ID for the last 19 years! I say to all musicians in the area to get paid what is do and do not get ripped off by lousy joints who are unfair!! I encourage you Mr. PJ to do part 2 of this story and stand up for your fellow musicians!
Jim Tilden Brown est.1991
Thanx for telling me how to be "professional"...I must have missed something this last 19 years.

Patrick Jacobs said...

Hi Jim, glad you came here to register your input on this. I'd love the Wine Cellar to do the same. Like I said, I have no favoritism toward you or the Wine Cellar, I was just making light of a little clash in the local music scene which I found interesting. Just reporting what I saw as I saw it. I really have no idea of the inner workings of the drama.

I think you're absolutely correct in saying that musicians rarely get compensated fairly, but really, that's always been the nature of the biz. Nowadays, professional musicians are lucky to find places that are willing to pay more than part of the door and free beer. Sad, but it is reality. However, I definitely DO stand on the musicians side when it comes down to it.

I'm sure you'll manage to do just fine when your "North Idaho tour" comes rolling this way, and you'll have many supporters who are ready to boogie the night away wherever it may be.

Anonymous said...

I can tell you it's not a money issue with's alot more about unorganized attitude that caused me tour problems...unkept promises and poor business practice....You said "longtime local bluesman" come after several requests over the years you do not list me in your local artists list?? I am proud of the people that support my music and help to make real change @ a grassroots level...FEED THE HUNGRY AND BOOGIE PEOPLE!!