Wednesday, Oct. 15: Hamell On Trial

The Swiss Restaurant and Pub

By Christian Carvajal on October 6, 2014

As strenuously as I labor to remain ignorant, there are occasions working for this fine journal when I discover myself learning something inadvertently. Such was the case when editor Ron "Pappi" Swarner asked me to cover an upcoming performance by Hamell on Trial. Absolutely, I replied. Happy to oblige. Now. What the hell is a Hamell on Trial? It turns out Hamell on Trial (I said it three times so you'll remember) is the nom de la musique of Ed Hamell, solo punk poet extraordinaire, beloved among cognoscenti at the Venn-diagram intersection of folk, punk and observational standup comedy. His current album, The Happiest Man in the World, was inspired by a recent divorce, but don't let his aggro delivery scare you: this guy can sing a joke. From his promotional materials, I gather he relishes comparisons to comedian Bill Hicks. Well, I'm a nice guy, and Hamell deserves this, so here: he'll remind you of Bill Hicks. Even better, he can play the rockin' hell out of a '37 Gibson guitar. I was especially won over by his YouTube video for a jaunty number called "I Hate Your Kid." The More You Know!

HAMELL ON TRIAL, w/garage rock band Radio On, 8:30 p.m. The Swiss Restaurant and Pub, 1904 Jefferson Ave., Tacoma, no cover(!), 253.572.2821