By Andi Liao 


Since the Spring of 2010, a small but tight-knit musical family has birthed, from a small seedling, a shining bastion of a DIY venue hosting regular shows featuring some of the best up-and-coming bands like Shattered Darlings and Liquid Kisses (or SDLK for short), Slothbear, Spirit People (formerly known as Magnificent Beast), Anna Bradley and the beloved Double Wonderful.

Affectionately known as American Boner, Boner Jam or Bonerfest, this showcase has carved out a small but growing niche within the stale, boring inspired-by-Brand-New Long Island music scene. Pioneered by the enigmatic Krissy Rubbles American Boner was birthed from a desire to showcase unheard but great bands, to host an amazing event but most importantly, to have a good time with great friends.

Part of me is writing this article because everyone involved with this project is a close friend of mine, but the most important point of this article is that people on this campus need to be exposed not just to better music, but to a better music scene.

Like at the last show, featuring SDLK and Incorporated Village of GHOST, there were so many new faces that showed up. And despite everyone not really knowing each other, it felt very much like an extended family. And once the show ended, we sat around for about two hours talking about shit; like Paul McCartney being dead; or the moon landing being staged. It’s stuff like that that keeps you sane.

For a long time I, along with many of my closest friends here, have been growing tired of the sorry attempts at building a solid independent music scene. For instance, I love Patrice Zapiti to death, but so many of the bands that have played RockYoFace, save for a couple, are just plain terrible. The BrookFest organizers also seem to perpetually up their asses. Janelle Monae is an amazingly talented musician who deserves all of the praise she gets, but Bruno Mars? Really? That dude fucking sucks. Best Coast was a worthy but futile effort. It was nice to see the general public of Stony Brook so accepting of a non-lamestream musician, but the execution of the event was just plain horrible. First, the venue was too big and having nobody open for the band just made it feel like we wasted a lot of money on a mediocre band.

The best thing to happen to the on-campus music scene is, without a doubt, Stony Brooklyn. Big cheese Bill Wenzel has found the perfect way for established and up-and-coming indie bands to come and play at a college. He’s enlisted such great bands as Small Black, Das Racist, Grooms, Savoir Adore, O’Death, the Drums and Beach Fossils just to name a few. Also great is that Stony Brooklyn is 21+ which means that I won’t have to deal with stupid shithead kids dancing like idiots ruining my vibe. The only downside to these shows is that they don’t happen very often–although that may just make them all the more enjoyable.

So without Stony Brooklyn, what’s a music-loving asshole like me to do? Well children, fear not, for tucked away in Centereach house dwells a slowly rising beast. You might call it a slowly rising beast of a boner! Oh! Like Medusa or the dreaded sirens, has this beautiful-yet-vicious creature reared its wretched face! Oh! How wondrous the music is that emanates from its core! So stunning…so, so stunning…American Boner, cries the followers! Oh! Great behemoth, shelter us with your warmth and girth. Protect us from the onslaught of the mindless song and dance of the masses. Guide us to the holy land of milk, honey and good vibes. Show us the way!

To be blunt, if you even remotely give a shit about supporting a legitimate and completely DIY independent music scene, you should consider it imperative to get your asses to each and every American Boner show. We’re very friendly people, and we won’t judge you for having shitty taste in music like those trustafarians living in Williamsburg. So keep your eyes peeled on the book of faces for the murmurings of the great beast’s name: Bo-ner Bo-ner, and come over. You’ll feel right at home.

Thank me later.