By Nicole Alvarez

After Nicole finished her shift on Friday night, she thought she was going to pay tribute to David Bowie, via a screening of the Jim Henson film he starred in, Laryrinth. But before the flick began, she got a text from a friend at Dimebash, the annual tribute to the late, great, Dimebag Darrell of Pantera (who was gunned down on stage at a gig in 2004). This year’s event had a number of great guests, including former Pantera frontman Philip Anselmo. 

Anyway, here’s Nicole’s account of her epic night. 


OK, I’m back on Earth. It took me a while to process and digest what I experienced this past Friday night. You see, something so legendary, so magical, so  “What the holy f— is happening” transpired, that it was like a mythological rock and roll unicorn appeared before my very eyes and offered me a ride to a kick a– bar on the moon.

Friday night I had tickets to see Labyrinth with one of my best friends at a midnight screening at The Vista on Sunset. We got there at about 11:30 pm and stood in a long ass line in the cold watching David Bowie wannabes strut by dressed as their favorite version of the “Goblin King.” Meanwhile, our other good friend sent us a text from Lucky Strike Live that just said, and I quote, “F—ing Dimebash. Dave f—ing Grohl.” I quickly responded and asked him to further explain himself. Was Dave Grohl bowling at Lucky Strike? Was he just hanging around drinking a few beers? What in Sam Hill was going on? He replied with “Hanging out on lane 10 as we speak…before he plays.” BEFORE HE PLAYS? Wait, let me get this right, before Dave Grohl plays at a bowling alley that I happen to frequent all the time? How the hell am I supposed to sit in a theater and concentrate on a movie now?

The theater doors finally opened and me and my homegirl grabbed our seats and my friend went to get us popcorn and a drink. Then, my friend sent another text: “Come now.” I knew I couldn’t just ignore that.

My pal and I grabbed the popcorn and the drink, ran our a–es down Sunset, hopped in my car, and headed towards Hollywood and Highland. It is important to note that no popcorn was lost in our mad dash and a really nice homeless woman ended up super stoked with our fresh bag. It was a good night for everyone.

We arrived at Lucky Strike Live and it was like the Rainbow Room on steroids. If you are a hardcore rock and roller, the kind that will go the grave in your vintage rock t-shirt, leather jacket, middle finger up in the air, and Marlboro Reds, and you were in the L.A. area, you were at Lucky Strike that night. In attendance was a who’s who of rock gods: Robert Trujillo of Metallica, Dave Grohl, Phil Anselmo of Pantera, Zakk Wylde, and Dave Lombardo of Slayer.

It was insane.

I somehow wormed my way into the pit, which was really the area located in front of the main bar, and stood respectfully behind Dimebag’s widow who you do NOT want to f— with, and in mere seconds, Dave Grohl was up on the Lucky Strike stage perched on a stool, rocking an acoustic guitar and an ABBA t-shirt, singing Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here.” WHAT. IS. HAPPENING?

(Photo: Lucky Strike/Tamea Agle)

(Photo: Lucky Strike/Tamea Agle)

Now, I know that on Wednesday nights Lucky Strike Live is the new place to be for people who love a good rock jam and rockers whose business it is to provide said jams, but this was blowing minds on an entirely new level. Also, it was Friday night, approximately 1:00am and I was supposed to be in a movie.

After making grown men cry, Grohl walked off stage and disappeared. Was he coming back? What just happened? Was more happening? Who needs a drink? Before anyone could even process what just went on, Grohl, Phil Anselmo, Rob Trujillo, and Dave Lombardo were all on stage paying tribute to Lemmy Kilmister with a very loud and very inspired cover of Motorhead’s classic “Ace of Spades.” Did I mention Phil Anselmo was snotting on the crowd, as in holding one nostril and shooting boogers at people with the other? Yeah, that was also happening. Throughout the night there were covers of Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath…Phil Anselmo rants, impromptu moshing and crowd surfing, a lot of rock horns and very bad words.

Finally, the part that made me freak out a little inside was the conclusion, which happened either at or close to 2:00am…ish. If someone would have ever said, “Nicole, one day you will get to see Pantera’s ‘Walk’ performed live at your favorite bar with Phil Anselmo singing and Dave Grohl on guitar,” I might have laughed and then punched that person in the face for toying with my emotions. I will always be a little metal girl at heart and “Walk” is just a standard. You are pretty much born and wired to know and respond to that song. But anyway, it happened and happily, there’s video to prove it.  I wish I could have bottled up the energy in the room that night. I could sell it for a million dollars. It was unbelievable. The universe is real cool sometimes and I for one, do not take that for granted.

Thank you Lucky Strike Live, thank you Dimebash, and thank you Philip, Grohl, and everyone else for a night I’ll never forget!


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