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Photos by Ketchum Photos
Article by Gina Myers

On Saturday, June 19, Rumbleville Underground Clothing Company and The Machine Shop will host the second annual Rumble in Flint, a day celebrating all things rockabilly: music, cars, and fashion. Joel Curran, owner of Rumbleville and organizer of the Rumble, anticipates this year to be bigger and better than last year. In fact, he is expecting it to be so much fun that he wishes he didn't have to work at it. He says, "I wish I could just go to it."

So what exactly is a rumble? A big part of the event is the music, and this year features some local favorites along with a nationally touring band. Returning from last year's Rumble is Graveside Manner (Detroit) and Cash O'Riley and the DownRight Daddies (Jackson/Saginaw). Joining them will be Midland psychobilly act The Loving Dead, and headlining the night is Three Blue Teardrops from Chicago, who describe themselves as "The ugliest, baddest, rawest, grittiest, nitro-fueled rockabilly bastards straight from the Rustbelt." Also returning from last year are the burlesque dancers, Miss Pussykatt and Lily Larue.

Detroit's Nightmares Car Club is hosting a car and chopper show which will take place in the parking lot of The Machine Shop. Prizes will be awarded in various categories. Last year, the trophies, which are all one-of-a-kind handmade oddities, were a hot topic of conversation, and Curran promises another unique batch of trophies will be awarded this year. There will also be awards given for a number of other competitions, from pin-up girl to best pompadour. (The pin-up gets a crown made from spark plugs.)

The event is a labor of love for Curran. He doesn't make money off of it. Instead, he gets pleasure from creating something he loves. "I love the whole rockabilly scene, and I want to create something for people to do close to home." Rumbleville Underground Clothing Company now sponsors two events a year at The Machine Shop, approximately six months apart. But one day Curran hopes to be able to do a lot more: "I'd like to see the event grow into a whole weekend, something along the lines of Indiana's Rockabilly Rebel Weekend." For now, it is coming together one piece at a time, with this year's event growing a little larger in scope than last year's. Curran has a solid line-up of music, he's added more contests than last year, and he's made arrangements with local hotels for discounts and shuttle service to and from The Machine Shop for those who may be coming in from out of town.

Rumble in Flint runs from 5 pm to 2 am on Saturday, June 19. To enter the car show, there is a $10 fee, which grants free admission to The Machine Shop. The car show is free for families and people of all ages to check out. Entrance to The Machine Shop costs $10 and, due to the adult nature of the burlesque dancers, is ages 18 and up. The Machine Shop is located at 3539 S. Dort Highway, Flint. For more information, visit Rumbleville Clothing's MySpace page.

© Gina Myers, 2010