bar in a garage - Queens

They did it on Friday nights anyway, drinking, telling stories, discussing rock music, so why not invite a few more to the party? And that’s how the weekly radio show and podcast, Live From the Barrage came to life. From John Houlihan’s wood-frame, unheated – no bathroom – no running water garage in Flushing, Queens. (Houlihan, 41,  once tried to install a wood-burning stove but it erupted in flames during a show. )

It’s 5 guys who know each other from the neighborhood. Houlihan’s an operating engineer at Lincoln Center and hooked up the 5 mics at each bar stool. There’s no theme to a Friday night chat but plenty of acerbic wit and wiseguy Queens attitude. Topics include music, the Mets and the daily grind. The slogan is it’s Friday night and we’re in Queens, minus a colorful adjective.

The show is streamed live from 8 – 11 PM and can be downloaded as a podcast.  Their audience is only about 100 people but Houlihan seems not to care. They’ve had guests like Daxx Nielsen of Cheap Trick and C.J. Ramone of the Ramones. Fans include Ad Rock of the Beastie Boys, singer Huey Lewis and hip-hop artist Biz Markie.

The show is hysterical and down right entertaining. Patrick Walsh is a sidekick to Houlihan. Brian Musikoff is the indi rock expert and Ryan Collier, a film audio engineer, supplies the round-robin trivia game. So check it out. If bucket lists were still cool, this would be on mine.