Nobody makes money playing the guitar in Abkhazia, Georgia's breakaway territory, but that doesn't keep people from rockin out. I was in Sokhum(i) last week and was invited to a 3 band concert in a Soviet era "House of Culture" in a village on the outskirts of town. It's great to dig how strong the spirit of rock and roll is in a place that has been totally isolated from the rest of the world for the past 15 years or so. Although I heard Metallica, Nirvana and The Red Hot Chili Peppers numbers, one band, KA-50 (named after a Russian attack helicopter) did not forget to play the ol' Soviet favorite, "Smoke on the Water."
My story for EurasiaNet.org. is HERE.
Chillin out in front of the House of Culture.
Although the crowd cleaned the shop next door of its cold beer, nobody got wasted or out of hand, which is rather odd for rock and roll, but that didn't stop the cops from coming in to try to kick everybody out, even though they were already leaving. This only goes to prove what a successful show it was, as it is never really a party until the cops come to break it up.