Eau Claire has maintained a reputation for having a vibrant music scene for many years now, and that acclaim only continues to grow further with the formation of the Eaux Claires festival and a new album from EC’s most famous resident. In addition to all things Justin Vernon the Chippewa Valley holds within it active scenes from multiple genres of music including punk, metal, folk, hip-hop, electronic, jazz, and more, and the artists making and performing this music can be seen weekly in the venues, bars, and basements of the Sawdust City.
Eau Claire, though, is quickly becoming more and more on the national radar for something else too…comedy! The Chippewa Valley is now home to a burgeoning stand-up scene. At the heart of it is a group of local comedians who go by Clear Water Comedy and who book, produce, promote, and perform on a weekly show at The Plus and other additional shows and events around the Chippewa Valley.
Clear Water Comedy formed a little over a year and a half ago and have since steadily grown from shows featuring exclusively local comics to now pulling in national headliners with credits like The Tonight Show, Comedy Central, Parks & Rec, Master of None, @midnight, Conan, Inside Amy Schumer, and more. Eau Claire has become a place where names like Kyle Kinane, Joe Mande, Aparna Nancherla and others can be seen. For those who like to laugh, this is an exciting development.
The beautiful thing about the size of the arts scene here in EC is that it’s big enough to continue growing and sustaining itself but it’s still small enough to be close-knit. There’s a lot of friendship and crossover from the well-established music scene and the newly minted standup scene. The best example of this is The Standup Getdown show that has popped up a few times and is now slated for a 4th outing later tonight. It’s a free event that showcases both EC’s music and comedy scenes on the same stage.
We’ve assembled more info on the Getdown’s music artists and some tracks to sample so that those of you who are new to both EC music and comedy can know a little more about what you’re in for:
Sniffle Party & Two Castles
Two Castles is the moniker of EC artist Eric Christenson. Eric’s solo music as Two Castles is lo-fi synth pop, melancholy yet danceable. He is also the producer/beatmaker that collaborated with vocalist/lyricist Serena Wagner (aka Sniffle Party) to bring her dream-pop debut EP “Peach Dream” to life. Two Castles and Sniffle Party were voted #3 and #2 favorite electronic artists in the Chippewa Valley in this year’s Volume One reader’s poll, and Sniffle Party was also voted one of the “Best New Bands”!
Doks Robotiks are an EC/MPLS hip-hop group that mix an old-school influence with a modern sensibility. Doks combines catchy jazz and funk instrumentation with lyrics that are brimming with positive, meaningful messages; Doks have a surefire recipe to make you feel good.