Holiday Songs, Part 2 – Ybor Rocks

So now I know what Craig Finn of The Hold Steady is on about when he sings about Ybor City. After a lovely day at the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, we headed on down to the original Columbia Restaurant in Tampa. It’s situated in the old Hispanic Quarter, now tarted up and brushed up, ready for a late-30’s rock singer from the mid-West to rhapsodise about over the best bar-room rock you’ve heard since the E-Street band tumbled out of Noo Joisey.

And I can see exactly why the various protagonists of Finn’s songs come to Ybor City to drink. The place is filled with bars, clubs, the occasional tattoo parlour and everything else the discerning 20-something needs to have a really messed-up time.

Ok, so we didn’t quite get so drunk that Ybor City almost killed us (again). It’s tough to do that with a 3 year old. At five-thirty in the afternoon. More like a couple of bottles of Modelo Negro (mmm dark beer), some great food and a charming waiter who told us all about his German Shepherd/Rottweiler puppy. That’s trouble brewing, I can tell you.

We drove away playing The Hold Steady’s “Slapped Actress”, with me singing along, badly, backed by my son asking for Feist’s “1,2,3,4”. Ybor City – not just for the hugely drunken moments in life.

Slapped Actress by The Hold Steady

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