A word to the wise: better warn your kith and kin that you might be a little "out of sorts" or "under the weather" at whatever family gathering on Thanksgiving Day...or possibly the entirety of this weekend. It's said that the day before T-Day is one of the biggest drinking days of the entire year, which means you'll probably be tilting a few back starting tomorrow night. And there will be plenty of bars and clubs having parties in honor of the occasion.
There's a lot to celebrate, not the least of which is the start of possibly a five day stretch of drinking, dancing, and debauchery. But be sure to pace yourself, as well as finding a way to get home safely, since Thanksgiving weekend runs from Wednesday, November 26, until Saturday, November 28.
And refrain from getting a second or third helping during Thanksgiving dinner if you're hoping to go out partying afterwards. True, mom's cranberry stuffing is definitely delish, but you're likely to pay a stiff price in the form of a food coma in exchange for another go-round with the buffet line. Frankly, you'll want to be light on your feet (instead of bogged down with a bellyache) when hitting up any of the following events.
A special Thanksgiving Eve edition of The Mint's stylish #ProjectM affair on Wednesday, November 26, will feature a spin session by Chicago-based house music act Jump Smokers, as well DJ Flipside. Various cocktail specials and table service will also be available. Call 480-516-9149 for reservations. Doors open up at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10 online.
What's the recipe for a good Thanksgiving Eve dance party? If you're behind the weekly Futurists event at Bar Smith, it involves mixing together such ingredients as "no cover, no drama, a pinch of elitism [and] good electronic music," as well as a dizzying array of visual projections from the artists of Gestalt Theory. The DJs that will help create this sonic concoction on both levels of Bar Smith during the Pre-Thanksgiving Day Massive on Wednesday, November 26, include Issa, Benni Beatnik, Tristan, and Pablo G. performing up on the rooftop while the duo of Defense.Mekanizm and Self.Destrukt drop darkwave, electroclash, EBM and New Wave downstairs. The party starts at 9 p.m.
Electronic music will also be in abundance at the Monarch next door during the annual Dance Giving affair on Wedenesday, November 26. The residents of house music nights RB Deep and Circuit -- including Turner and Heit, Juheun, Michelle Sparks, Dan Lunsford, Bijou, and VJ ESC -- will team up for the four-on-the-floor free-for-all that kicks off at 9 p.m. Penny beers will also be available until 11 p.m. for those who want to catch a buzz early on in the evening. Admission is free if you RSVP online. Concurrently, the Monarch's upstairs lounge will host a one-night return of renowned local hip-hop night Groove Candy and will feature DJs M2, Tricky T, and Pickster One, as well as live art by Dumperfoo. Admission is $5 before 10 p.m.
The walls and woofers of the 100 Proof Lounge will quake with sub-harmonic sounds when L.A. dubstep/electro-house fiend Ghastly unleashes a maelstrom of wobbles and wub-wub at a special edition of Bass Wednesdays. Resident DJs like Hemmesphere, Trill Tone, and Sam Groove will also perform and table service deals like $100 Three Olives Vodka and two bottles for $150 will be available, presuming all the bass-heavy sounds don't start shattering bottles. Doors open at 9 p.m.
Wasted Grain itself will also get into the spirit of the season by holding its "Twas A Wasted Night Before Thanksgiving" party, which will include performances by Ebinezer and Kush County in the main room.
INTL In case you haven't heard the news (or logged into Facebook in the last five minutes), the much-anticipated gig by Rebecca and Fiona on Thanksgiving Eve has been moved over to INTL, according to nightlife promoter Relentless Beats due to some unspecified issues. Good thing, since the Swedish electro-house duo is known for provide "can't miss" performances. Plus, they're pretty easy on the eyes. The event, which also celebrates the club's one-year anniversary, starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10.
According to the cats at the Tempe version of El Hefe, Thanksgiving Eve "has always been known as a night to rage." Hence the reason why the Mill Avenue spot will be going wild out on Wednesday, November 26, and putting on a rager for the ages with a mix of spirits, sombreros, hot sounds, and drink slingers dancing on the bar. The party is being titled "Give Thanks for Hefe" (with the requisite hashtag #TurkDownForWhat" target="_blank">#TurkDownForWhat) and is certain to be one of the main places to be seen. As such, El Hefe is encouraging patrons to show up early "before the line builds." If you happen to get turned away, however, the bar will reopen at 7 p.m. on Thanksgiving night for round two. Admission is free to both parties.
A whole mess of activity will be transpiring at this Mill Avenue drinkery on Wednesday, November 26, including DJ Elijah Stone spinning "country with a beat," the giveaway of a Junior Johnson guitar, line dancing, and more. A special guest bartender will be slinging drinks, such as $3 Moonshine brews and $4 Fireball and Moonshine shots. Doors open at 9 p.m.
Back-to-back shindigs will transpire at Boondocks, kicking off on Wednesday, November 27, with the aptly named Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving event that will include live music from Trey Odum at 7 p.m., $2 beers until 10 p.m., and DJs spinning dance music until close. The party starts at 2 p.m. And if you're looking for somewhere to celebrate the holiday after gorging yourself silly, the bar will host an Escape Your Relatives party on Thursday, November 27, with fire pits, s'mores, industry drink prices for everyone, and more. Doors open at 6 p.m.
If you're in the mood for something other than the ever-requisite turkey over the holiday weekend, how's about some chicken and/or waffles? No, not the delicious combination of bird and battercakes, but rather the fantastic Americana/roots/rockabilly band led by local music scene veteran Kevin Daly. They'll be headlining an evening of live music at ThirdSpace on Wednesday, November 26, that will also feature Crossfire Lounge, Sueños Muertos, and Fat Gray Cat. The jams start at 8 p.m. Admission is free.
Don't expect to get your T-Day dinner via the Crescent's in-house Cocina 10 eatery, as the kitchen will be closed over the holiday. The lounge, however, will be open for business and busy with activity when it hosts the Thanksgiving Night Throwdown on Thursday, November 27. Singer-songwriter Daryl Scherrer, the DJs of Mondo Twang, and self-proclaimed "southern gospel noir" act Where Dead Voices Gather are all scheduled to perform. Doors are at 8:30 p.m. and the show starts at 9 p.m. Admission is free.
House music patriarchs Pete "SuperMix" Salaz and DJ Senbad will once again whip up their Red Monkey "Work That Turkey" dance-fest at the Monarch. As with many of the previous editions of the annual event, which is now in its 18th year, the pair will serve up mixes of groovy four-on-the-floor sounds throughout evening. The six-hour shindig will also feature the DJs of Rebel Disco and reportedly a few surprises. Doors are at 9 p.m. and festivities will go until 3 a.m. Admission is free before 10 p.m. and $10 thereafter.
Meanwhile, the b-boys and beat-slingers of the Blunt Club will be putting on a big spread of their own across town at the Yucca Tap in Tempe at their yearly Bluntsgiving celebration. Fittingly, they'll be bringing in some of their nearest and dearest for the occaison, including NYC selector and longtime Blunt Club cohort Roli Rho, who will work the wax alongside pals like Pickster One, Fact135, and Tricky T. Local rapper Roq'y Tyraid will also perform. The festivities begin at 9 p.m. and there's no cover.
Two rooms of DJs and dancing action await at Bobby Q's Lounge during its big Thanksgiving Bash on Thursday, November 27, which will also serve as a birthday party for Phoenix rapper Hannibal Leq. DJ Phlava will spin hip-hop tracks and Top 40 hits in one room while the trio of Dark Vader, Skoolboy, and Skillz offer reggae in the other. Drink deals include $3 Long Islands, $4 Guinness and Red Stripes, and $5 pineapple Ciroc cocktails until midnight. Doors are at 9 p.m. Cover charges vary.
Want some drum 'n' bass to go along with your drumsticks? Belgium-born producer Netsky and London's Kove, both of who are big on the bassy genre, will pay a visit to The Pressroom as a part of the "Stay Up With Me" tour on Friday, November 29. The beats start at 9 p.m. and local support will be announced. General admission tickets are $20 and VIP table service ranges from $375 to $1,000.
If you need a stiff drink or four after all the holiday-related drama, the bartenders at the Rogue will be pouring two-for-one drinks until 11 p.m., popping open $2 cans of PBR, and whipping up $3 specialty cocktails with names like "Red Hot Suzy" and "Self Destruction" during the CUPCAKE! Badlands & Bedlam party on Friday, November 28. They'll also have $3.50 Cupcake shots (natch) in such flavors as devil's food, vanilla, and lemon chiffon. Meanwhile, a post-apocalypse themed dance party will be raging with electro, industrial, and '80s music blasting away via DJs like Squalor, $&M, The Darkness, and Mess & Phetamine. Tie one on starting at 9 p.m. Admission is $6.
While shoppers will be killing themselves to score ungodly discounts at big box stores across the Valley, the rappers and turntablists of The Vent will be killing it during their Black Friday hip-hop event. The trio of LES725, Mayra E., and DJ Phonik will be on the ones and twos while MC Optimal, Penny Wise, Span Phly and others will spit rhymes. Things get going at 10 p.m. and there's a $5 cover.
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Editor's Note: This blog was updated since its original publication.