VOV Has The Right Price

The Pink Spiders for $7? The Queers for $10? The Valley of the Vapors fest is promoting shows with cover charges less than what our local bands try to rake us over for.

The Valley of the Vapors Independent Music Festival in Hot Springs National Park, Ark., is celebrating its fifth year. The fest is touted as “a global community of DIYsters” plus dedicated sponsors and volunteers.

Photo: Karen Bondowski / ConcertLivewire.com
Metro, Chicago.

The festival takes place March 17-22 at a small venue inside the park. Over the years, the VOV has drawn 700 acts from as far away as Australia and Israel and the total combined crowd is 7,000. Things are kept cheap and there’s no layaway plan.

The VOV kicks off March 17 with “The Worlds Shortest St. Patty’s Day Parade.” Afterward, Brave Combo plays a 21-and-over show at Maxine’s while Monotonix, AIDS Wolf, Fiasco and U.S. Girls play an all-ages show at Low Key Arts.

The next night, Pink Spiders – a veteran of the that had its debut album produced by Ric Ocasek, headline a $7 gig.

Longtime punk band The Queers plus Teenage Bottlerocket and Poison Arrows play March 19 for $10. Saturday, Headlights front the March 21 show, then there are a bunch of bands playing at the March 22 barbecue, starting off at 2 p.m.

We just looked online at one of our local clubs. A Ramones cover band and a local band we’ve never heard of are each charging $10. There’s a local punk rock band charging $12. Meanwhile, according to Mapquest, it’s just a 26-hour drive to VOV! Can we carpool?