Sunday, September 25, 2016

That kid from Firestone High who collects Grammys like M&Ms at music awards and the guy who builds things and then writes books about them will be the spotlight duet for the Akron Roundtable’s 40th anniversary celebration dinner.

The Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney, whose father’s main claim to fame was gashing his head into a sign while hurrying across a downtown Akron street, and author David Giffels, who believes that if I build it there’s a book in it, are the featured conversationalists.

The patron party will begin at 5:30 p.m. Monday, October 3 at the John S. Knight Center, 77 East Mill Street, Akron. Cocktail party starts at 6 p.m. (giving patrons a head start on the drinking).
The dinner will begin at 7 p.m. At 7:45 p.m., Patrick and David are on the stage for their scintillating conversation, after “mixing and mingling” (PR release’s words) with the guests from 6 p.m. on.

Want to show up? It’s only $1,500 for a table of 10 for corporate tables. For the peons, it’s $75 just to get in the door.

Carney, with fellow former Firestone High grad Dan Auerbach, produced albums like “The Big Come Up” (2002),Thickfreakness” (2003), “Rubber Factory” (2004), a tribute to their Akron roots, “Magic Potion” (2006), “Attack & Release” (2008), “Brothers” (2010), “El Camino” (2011) and “Turn Blue” (2014).

Carney and Auerbach record with Nonesuch Records. They have played before sellout crowds from Australia to Europe and throughout America.

Proudly watching this skyrocketing to fame has been Carney’s father, retired BJ reporter and all-round nice guy Jim Carney, and stepmom Katie Byard, still a reporter at Ol’ Blue Walls.

In 2009, Patrick also formed the band Drummer, in which he plays bass. Each of the band¹s members has played drums in another band.

An associate professor of English at the University of Akron, which no longer has to endure the leadership of the Scarborough unfair, Giffels wrote a book about repairing an 1813 Tudor house and has one coming out about building a casket with his father. Don’t ask.

After this dynamic pair, the Akron Roundtable will have to settle for such lesser lights as Washington Post syndicated columnist E.J. Dionne, Jr. (October 20), Pro Football Hall of Fame executive director David Baker (November 17), who is taking a beginner’s course in field turf management, and Huntington Bancshares CEO Stephen D. Steinour (December 8).

These are gigantic steps down from Carney and Giffels, but the Akron Roundtable probably will recover from the humiliation.

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