Big Sandy and the Fly-Rite Boys and I have a relationship and they are completely oblivious to it.
Way back in the early 90’s I was working at my first job after college. I was not a happy camper. After a year on this job, I realized that I had made a bad career choice. I realized pretty quickly that I was not going to make a lot of money doing TV production and master control. I needed to make a course correction. I quit my job and started applying for graduate school. One of the places I applied to was UCLA School of Film. Because I was not working and still looking for my purpose in life, I decided to go out to Los Angeles and visit my brother who was already going to graduate school at UCLA. I thought it would be a good idea to check out the school in case I got accepted. A former coworker of mine told me I should look up this guy Tim. He was a former coworker of ours at the job I didn’t like. He had moved out to LA a couple months prior.
I called him up and he was happy to go out and do the town. He was new to LA and was eager to check out the city himself. A coworker of his recommended some places. The first place was a bar called The Cat & The Fiddle on Sunset Boulevard in the Hollywood area. The 2nd place was on the Sunset Strip but it was kind of a lame poser nightclub. So we cruised to the 3rd place which was this tiny dive bar over in The Valley in North Hollywood.
That was when I first saw Big Sandy and the Fly-Rite Boys. They were rocking the house. I fell in love right away. I was totally digging that scene. After a couple of sets of music, Tim and I decided to call it a night. But something amazing happened on the way back to my brothers.
“Holy crap! I almost forgot to tell you,” Tim said. “You’ve been accepted to San Diego State graduate school.”
“Hah-min-ah, hah-min-ah (that’s my Jerry Lewis reaction spelled phonetically), what was that?” I asked.
San Diego State was one of the graduate schools I had applied to. They had been trying to reach me but apparently the home phone number I provided did not work. So they decided to call my old job. A mutual coworker of ours had heard I was going to LA and called Tim. They told him that if he saw me to tell me that I had been accepted.
Just like that, my future had been determined. I was moving to San Diego.
After returning home, I put in my notice to vacate my apartment and moved in with my parents. I took a temp job to keep the money flowing. Eventually, however, I returned to Southern Cal to look for a place to live in San Diego. While I was down there, I cruised back up to LA to see my brother, AND hopefully see Big Sandy and the Fly-Rite Boys again.
Sure enough, Big Sandy et. al. were playing out in Pasadena. My brother and I cruised out there and as before, Big Sandy was delivering the goods. However, there was an additional memorable thing about that night. I met this beautiful young woman. We were really hitting it off and having fun. Her friends had drove that night so she had to leave. I told her I was going to be moving to San Diego soon and that I wanted to look her up after I got down there. She said that she could find me at that bar every time Big Sandy was playing there.
I put that nugget of information into my memory banks. A couple months later when I arrived in San Diego and settled in, I high-tailed it back up to LA to presumably see my brother again. But really it was about seeing that girl. My brother had a lot of school work to do that night, so I made the trek out to Pasadena on my own to see Big Sandy–and the beautiful young woman.
Well, as one might have guessed, she wasn’t there. I hung out there at the bar all alone fecklessly waiting and waiting like a schmuck hoping that this young woman would make an appearance. She never did.
What’s a guy to do except pout, get a good night’s sleep and move on.
Now, just when you thought the tale of Big Sandy was over, there is one last event worth mentioning. Big Sandy made a trip down Interstate 5 to San Diego to play at some place I liked in downtown. While listening to the band, something struck me. Had they ever been up to the Midwest?
During a break, I went up to the bass player and asked him. He said they never had. I told him that they should consider it because I thought the folks up in Minneapolis would really like them. The bass player seem genuinely interested in what I was saying and thanked me.
I didn’t think anything of it after that. That was until a few months later when my buddy Jeff told me about this new band he and the gang back home had discovered called Big Sandy and the Fly-Rite Boys. I just about crapped my pants. They not only had played gigs at local bars, they had played some sets in local record stores I used to frequent.
I can’t help but feel that I may have had something to do with that.
So, if Big Sandy and the Fly-Rite Boys ever read this story, I hope they send me an email.
I believe Big Sandy is still playing the circuit out in Southern Cal so if you’re ever out there, you should look them up. Here’s a gem of a song by them that reminds me of that young woman in Pasadena.
If you like swingin’ music like Big Sandy and the Fly-Rite Boys, you might like The Fun Time Music Festival–a web exclusive program on KFAI.org.
It must have been 1997. I was living in Los Angeles with my girlfriend (who some of you may now know as my wife Lisa). One day my friend Joan from Minneapolis came to town on business. She was staying at some hotel a couple blocks off The Sunset Strip. Apparently this was no ordinary hotel. In the hotel was a bar called The Whiskey. No, not the Whisky A Go-Go. It was just called The Whiskey. Joan had learned that The Whiskey was a special hangout for Hollywood celebrities. Typically, common folk like us would not have been let into The Whiskey. But because Joan and her co-worker were guests in the hotel, we were allowed in.When we went to the bar it was pretty empty. There were no celebs there yet. So we sat there and enjoyed having The Whiskey all to ourselves for a while. Slowly people started trickling in. No one that we recognized, however. This waitress approached us and said, in so many words, that we had to forfeit our table because they were expecting someone. We presumed this to mean a celebrity of some sort was kicking us off of our table. It was no big deal to me, Joan or her co-worker. However, my girlfriend Lisa was kind of miffed. Her thoughts were that we were there first. We were paying customers. Why should we have to forfeit our seats to anybody?Regardless, I assured the waitress. “As soon as the people arrive, we will leave. Just let us know when they arrive.” The waitress agreed to this but she was obviously still anxious about it. She was hoping we would leave right then.The four of us had another round of drinks when the waitress came up and said, “You have to leave now.” I replied, “So they’re here?” “Not yet.” She said.I calmly assured her, “Listen, as soon as they get here I swear we will leave. Just tell us know when they get here.”Again, she reluctantly agreed.By this time, it was becoming apparent that The Whiskey was pretty much as advertised. It was a celebrity hang out. Joey Ramone was sitting at a table with Billy Corrigan and James Iha of The Smashing Pumpkins. Joan’s coworker and I got up to go to the bathroom and on the way out we saw the actor David Boreanaz–who at the time was starring in a TV show on The WB Network called “Angel.” The bathroom for the bar was through the hotel lobby. As this guy and I walked through the lobby, there were several hot chicks just sitting there in sexy clothes. They apparently were not allowed in the bar. So they sat in the lobby waiting to get picked up by some B-List celeb like “Angel.”Anyway, this guy and I get to the bathroom and there was a pretty big line. There was basically one toilet for the guys and one for the girls. We patiently waited in line until the men’s door opened. These two yahoos emerged with shades over their eyes and cocky grins on their faces. One would have to be pretty naive to not believe they were doing coke in the men’s room. As they passed us, we noticed one of them had an oven mitt on his hand. Me and Joan’s coworker looked at each other puzzled. “What was that all about? Is that the new style around Hollywood these days? I heard of Bozo noses, but not oven mitts.”This guy and I go back to our table. We tell Joan and Lisa about the dude wearing the oven mitt and we had a good laugh. Just then, the anxious waitress comes up to us again. “You have to leave now. They’re here.” As promised we politely grabbed our drinks and walked toward the lobby. When we got to the entrance, Lisa made us stop. She wanted to see who it was that we had to give up our seats for. Low and behold, who do you suppose it was who took our seats? Yep. That’s right. Oven Mitt Boy. He and his “nose candy” buddy and two other dingleberries were the ones who took our table.Joan, her coworker and I started laughing. “You got to be kidding me.” Lisa was not amused. “Who the hell are they? I don’t recognize any of those idiots. And I work at Warner Brothers.”Lisa promptly walked back to our table. Joan, her coworker and I stayed back and watched. “What the hell is she doing?”We watched from across the room as Lisa leaned over wagging her finger at these guys. She was clearly not being nice. Oven Mitt Boy took the mitt off his hand and proceeded to stick his middle finger in Lisa’s face. Lisa was unphased. We had no idea what she was saying, but she was giving them the business.Eventually, Lisa came back towards the rest of us. “What did you say to them?”Essentially Lisa just let them know that she was pissed about having to give up our table for a bunch of flash-in-the-pan nobodies.To this day, I have no idea who Oven Mitt Boy was or what made him so special that we had to give up our table.
If you like little nuggets of fun like this, you might like The Fun Time Music Festival–a web exclusive show on KFAI.org. When you’re going for a walk, doing yard work, doing house work or just chilling by the lake, give us a listen. KFAI has a mobile app.
It was around November of 1992 that I made my first move away from my hometown of Minneapolis to San Diego, California. I had secured a job at a local independently owned TV station called KTTY. KTTY was the one of the last of a dying breed–the locally owned independent TV station. I didn’t make any money working at KTTY. But it was really fun to work there. It is still one of my favorite jobs and I made lifelong friends there. There was no HR department, the stress level was really low and no one was overworked. Things were so laid back that the owner of the station didn’t say a word even if the company lost money in a particular quarter. He would just sit in his office smoking a couple packs a day, eating El Pollo Loco chicken and watching his other investments which actually paid dividends. KTTY was easily the lowest rated TV station in San Diego, but no other station had more fun that we did.We even had a silly locally produced Friday morning community events program called “What’s up San Diego?” Even though I was working as the assistant program manager, I was one of the few people in the building who knew how to operate a TV camera. Therefore, I was assigned the position of lead cameraman. It was on the set of “What’s Up San Diego?” where I met one of the hostesses of the show. Her name was Lisa. She was a sort of “roving reporter” for “What’s Up San Diego?” And not only that, she ended up being the woman who would eventually become my wife.Lisa and I ended up “getting involved” when we made plans for her to set me up with one of her friends. I was suppose to go see The Buzzcocks with Lisa and her friend, but her friend went delinquent that night. So it ended up just being Lisa and me. And the rest is history. On one of our first dates, Lisa and I went down to the Gaslamp Quarter in downtown San Diego. I had been spending a lot of time in the Gaslamp back in those days because of place down there called “Patrick’s II” which is one of best Blues Music venues in Southern California. However, on this night, Lisa and I would be going to a place around the corner called “Croce’s” owned by the family of the late Jim Croce. Croce’s was a pretty nice place with a fine dining restaurant on one side and a bar on the other. Croce’s specialized in a genre of music I knew little about at the time but soon come to appreciate–Latin Jazz.So anyway, Lisa and I wormed our way through the bar and found a couple seats at this nice private table in the back. We listened to some awesome jazz, made some jokes and generally enjoyed our private little romantic spot in the back of the bar. No sooner than we had become secure in our private spot when this trio of older adults came into the bar, walked toward the back and sat right down at the table where Lisa and I were sitting.“What the hell?” was our mutual reaction. There were other places in the bar for these people to sit (or stand for that matter). What possessed them to intentionally invade the space of what was obviously a romantic rendezvous. We bitched and moaned for a little bit until Lisa came up with an idea. She slid her chair closer to mine and then initiated a colossal make-out session. We had tongues flapping in each other’s mouths. It should have been enough to make anyone feel compelled to leave the table. These people were completely unfazed. It was as if they didn’t see it at all. They just continued chatting loudly drowning out the music that I was personally enjoying. Just like that our romantic night at Croce’s was abruptly cancelled.I always think of that night when I see the Jazz Flute scene from “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.”If you liked the little story above and the video below, you might also like “The Fun Time Music Festival” — An online only radio program here on KFAI.org. Click HERE to view our webpage.
When it comes to music, there are two kinds of people in this world. There are those whose entire musical collection is determined by culture gatekeepers. Just about the only music they listen to and about the only artists they are familiar with are those that are played on commercial radio, listed in the pop charts, awarded at the Grammys, winners of a TV contest or recommended by the music aggregators online.Then there are the other folks. These people are a little more explorative. These people bypass the culture gatekeepers and explore other musical genres and artists on their own. These are the people who visit used records stores, cruise YouTube, check out the public library and listen to radio stations like KFAI. These are people who are equally as willing to listen to the B-side of a record as they are the A-side. One might even refer to these kind of people as “B-Siders.”It is important to note that us B-siders are a very tiny minority. A vast majority of people are perfectly willing to let the culture gatekeepers spoon feed them music. That’s why it is so important for us B-siders to stick together and support one another.You can show your B-side pride this summer during the upcoming Summer Pledge Drive for KFAI. Let’s all put our money where our ears are and keep B-side music from having to go on life support.KFAI Summer Pledge Drive — July 31 to August 6, 2019. Donate securely online at KFAI.org.And if you like B-Side Music, continue to listen to KFAI and, in particular, check out the web-exclusive show, The Fun Time Music Festival.
…or would that be, “A Peak Up The Skirt” of Playboy. I’m sorry, I couldn’t resist.For those of you who know me as the host of the KFAI web-exclusive program, The Fun Time Music Festival, you may know that I have two dubious distinctions. One is that I used to work for Playboy Television. The second is that I got fired from Playboy Television. I wish I could say that I got fired for some scandalous incident, but that was not the case.Regardless, my brief stint at Playboy was memorable. One of the interesting things about Playboy was that each month, each employee got to meet the Playmate Of The Month. The only one I remember meeting was Shauna Sand. She’s mostly known for being sexual partners with the B grade actor, Lorenzo Lamas.Another interesting thing was that much of the commissioned art for the magazine was framed and hanging on the walls of the office. It was like working in an art museum. There was some really cool paintings in there. There was this masterpiece by Leroy Neiman of an early 60’s cocktail lounge. If I were ever to become a cat burglar, that would be the painting I would steal. It was huge too. It had to have been 5 feet wide by 6 feet tall.One might assume that working at Playboy was something akin to an episode of “Mad Men”–a bunch of womanizing men, smoking cigars and drinking scotch. Nothing could have been further from the truth. Of all the employees there, about half were women. Of the other half that were men, at least 70% were gay. The business of Playboy was all about glamour. Straight males are not the best at that. Besides, if any rank and file employee had a scheme to make it with a playmate or even a young woman auditioning to be a playmate, that would be grounds for termination. If there was any “gettin’ it on” with the playmates, you had to be way higher up the food chain, if you know what I mean.
For another interesting tale from Playboy Television, you can click the link below to hear one of the stories I told during a broadcast of The Fun Time Music Festival. To hear more mildly interesting anecdotes like these, you may want to check out The Fun Time Music Festival on the KFAI Mobile App. You’ll hear some rockin’ good music and some fun stories being told.
By now I’m sure you have heard of the fantastic web-exclusive program on KFAI called The Fun Time Music Festival. You may be asking yourself, “What exactly is Fun Time Music?”Read on, friends, and find out.
There has to be others like me.
I could probably summarize The Fun Time Music manifesto concisely by just quoting the infamous Ted Nugent. He once said, “Anyone who came here tonight to get mellow can just turn around and get the F*%$ outta here!” However, that is not very inclusive. I would like to welcome others into the fold. I want to invite others to become “part of the body”, like that old Star Trek episode.I know that much of the music I like is an acquired taste, so I have no delusions about becoming the next Simon Cowell. I also want to say that I do not believe that my musical tastes are any better than anyone else’s. Everyone is entitled to like what they like, even if it’s insufferable tripe like Iggy Azalea. But, I have to admit upfront that I am a music snob and I can’t help it. I’m not a snob in an arrogant, “My music is better than everyone else’s” sort of way. I am a snob in that it is not likely that anyone is going to impress me with their musical tastes unless that music has “Fun Time Music” attributes (which I will go over shortly). I believe the reason I like or dislike music is mostly genetic. I literally mean that the reason I like my music a certain way is physiological.I can actually remember my first favorite song. I’m talking way back here. I was definitely a preschooler like 3 or 4. My mom and dad were not particularly into music that much, but they did have this old .45 record player. My parents and my brother would typically put on pop hits from The Partridge Family or The New Christy Minstrels. They were ok to me, but I was not blown away. Then one day, somebody put on this old .45 by a Texas Bluesman named Ray Sharpe called “Linda Lu.” What that record was doing in my parents collection is beyond me, but there was something about the Blues groove in that song that totally wrung my bell. I have basically been pursuing the emotion of that groove ever since that day. If the music does not contain some kind of groove, I won’t like it.Much of contemporary music is so boring to me that it sucks the energy from my body. I mean it actually makes me physically weak. I equate it to going to church. I believe it is a good thing to go to church once in a while, but there is only one problem for me personally. It’s too boring. There is no energy. The pace is way too slow. I dread the thought of even going. Not because of the message, but basically because it’s forced boredom. If church was more like the James Brown scene in The Blues Brothers movie, I would go every Sunday–hell, I’d go every day.About three years ago, I went to the Lowertown Blues Festival in St. Paul to see Walter Trout. Trout used to rock ass when he played lead guitar for John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers in the 80’s. But this time he was super-serious and played like five consecutive slow Blues songs sucking the energy out of my body and I had to leave. I need my music to be a little more energized so I can get energized.My friends invited me to see Four On The Floor at the Lake Harriet band shell a couple summers ago. I was told that they “rocked out pretty good.” Someone else told me that I should “view the show from rear” because they expected the volume to be pretty high. So, I went. I only had to hear 2 seconds of the first boring song to have the energy sucked from my body and I had to leave. In fact, I had biked to the show and they did such a thorough job of draining me of my energy that I almost didn’t make it home. I mean it. I had to stop at Davanni’s on the way home to get some food.So now you understand why I am so particular about my musical tastes–it’s innate in me and I can’t help it. That is why I’m a music snob.This whole idea of my musical tastes being genetic leads me to ask, am I the only person like me? There certainly has to be others like me out there, right? I refuse to believe that I am alone in this world. That is when the vision for The Fun Time Music Festival became clear. The Fun Time Music Festival is a means of reaching out to those of you who share my vision of how music should be. Well, let’s not go that far. Let’s say how music could be–just a little more frequently.
Attributes of Fun Time Music
One of the good things about Fun Time Music, is that it has tangible attributes. One of those attributes is that the time period is irrelevant. It strikes me how many people actually believe that in order for music to be considered “good” it has to be from the current time period. I understand that some of the younger people out there are weary of being told how great the 60’s were and all that. But to dismiss music out of hand simply because it is not current, is really shallow.Another attribute is that genre is irrelevant.Fun Time Music covers a wide array of genres–as you will be able to tell if you listen to the program. I play Jazz, Blues, Classic Rock, Punk Rock, Progressive Rock, Funk, New Wave, Ska, Show Tunes, Oldies, Rockabilly, etc.The third attribute is the one that ties all these genres together–and that is a downbeat. Something you can snap your fingers to, tap your foot to, bop your head to or air jam to. I once read in the liner notes of a CD that put it perfectly. “Today’s music is all Rock and NO Roll.” There needs to be some “Roll” in the music or it ain’t Fun Time Music.I have been to many so-called “Rock” shows where there is no rhythm at all. Yet I see these people staring into their iPhones and bopping their heads in this futile search for the downbeat. It’s almost as if they have been programmed by watching concert footage from the old days when people were bopping their heads to actual rhythm and then determined that that was what they were supposed to do–bop their heads. The fact that these people are staring into their iPhones is proof positive how boring the music is. No one will have their heads in their iPhones when the Fun Time Music Festival comes to town.Fun Time Music is more about the music and less about lyrics. Again, this is primarily due to another physiological fact about me. I have had hearing problems most of my life and am not able to understand lyrics as well as others. I have listened to songs over and over again and have had to have friends tell me what the lyrics are saying. Therefore, I never bothered to listen to lyrics. Because of this, I will frequently play instrumentals. I will also play songs with, GASP, guitar solos. Way too often I’ll go to a bar and hear a combo playing and just when it seems like they’re about to hit the groove and start jamming a bit, they end the song abruptly. To me that’s like having sex with no climax. Keep the groove going for a little bit! It doesn’t have to be the “Mountain Jam” by the Allman Brothers, but for God’s sake, 48 bars of jamming won’t hurt anyone. If the groove is good, stick with it.If there are lyrics in Fun Time Music, you are not likely to be emotionally inspired by them–unless you are inspired to laugh. I like music with stupid lyrics that are songs about nothing. Some meaningful lyrics may make their way into Fun Time Music, but that will be only if they are accompanied by other aforementioned Fun Time Music attributes.This segues nicely to another attribute of Fun Time Music. It needs to have a sense of humor.There is an old Blues number I like called, “Get to Gettin’” by Big Walter Price. It is basically a song about Walter and his wife squabbling. He’s telling his wife to stop her crap or he’s going to smack her upside the head. Honestly, I don’t think Walter really intended to hit his wife. It is more of an empty threat. The same way Ralph Cramden on “The Honeymooners” would threaten his wife with the “Bang! Zoom!” However, I’m sure some people today would condemn me as some kind of sexist misogynist who advocates for wife-beating simply for playing this song. That is not why I would play the song. I don’t advocate for wife beating. I just like the groove of the music. I love the lead guitar work. Besides, I listened to what Big Walter had to say and I’d have to agree that his wife had it coming.Just kidding. It’s called a joke, so “Lighten up Francis.”One thing Fun Time Music is not is sanctimonious crap. Fun Time Music does not have time for bullshit political opinions. Too many artists believe their going to change the world with their boring music. The last thing we need in this world is more ignoramuses who are going to change the world–particularly popular artists. They are the very last people on earth we should be listening to for our advice on life. They live in a reality distortion zone. They should just keep going to their orgies and keep their opinions to themselves. They’re not Martin Luther King no matter how much they imagine they are. Besides, all their political BS results in only one thing–division.
It provides a positive energy.
I called it The Fun Time Music Festival for a reason. The music is fun and about having fun. Nothing brings people together better than having fun.When I say “having fun,” I mean in the common understanding of the term. There are miscreants out there whose idea of fun is to get in fist fights and find someone to date rape. Those are automatic disqualifications from Fun Time Music. Like Jack Black said in “The School of Rock”, “Rock n Roll isn’t about getting loaded and acting like a jerk.”Fun Time Music is about providing positive energy not negative energy. Not like a Donny Osmond/Up With People sort of positive energy. And not in a pushy “inspirational” Super Bowl ad sort of positive energy. It is more like a “gettin’ loaded and gettin’ laid” sort of positive energy. Rap and Hip-hop rarely fall into this category. Don’t get me wrong, I mean no disrespect to those who like Rap. However, Rap is not Fun Time Music. Rap is the epitome of “gotta make a statement” music. It’s all about “telling it like it is” and “speaking truth to power” and all that. Moreover, too many Rap artists hold themselves in very high regard. They take themselves way too seriously. They think of themselves as modern day prophets who are going to change the world with their tired old statements about society.Heavy Metal rarely falls into this category either. Again, no disrespect to those who like it, but Heavy Metal actually epitomizes “All Rock and No Roll.” Heavy Metal is also so dreadfully serious. It’s all dark commentary on the world and visions of the apocalypse. It’s filled with anger and angst to the point that it drives people to suicide. What’s fun about that?Then there is all that other stuff. I don’t know what to call it, but it ain’t Rock N Roll. The Maroon Five’s and The Imagine Dragons…I don’t know what to say about this stuff. I find this stuff so contrived and disingenuous that I can’t find the words to describe my disdain for it.When it comes to this kind of music, I would like to repeat the infamous “Disco Demolition Night” that occurred before a Chicago White Sox game back in 1979 (Look up that one on YouTube). I would like everyone who hates this crap as much as me to gather in Times Square (or some other high profile location), bring Imagine Dragon and Maroon 5 CDs, put them in a box and blow that box sky high with ten sticks of dynamite. With all that said, Fun Time Music is meant to bring people together IN FUN. While most of the music in the Fun Time Music Festival is likely to be considered heterosexual male music in nature, it is not intended to exclude or divide–not divide us by ethnicity, by gender, by sexual orientation or by political affiliation. About the only people it excludes are people who are ultra sensitive, have no sense of humor and who are always looking to “make a statement.” In other words, boring people.Like I said before, nothing brings people together like having fun. So hang up your hang ups and set your soul free with The Fun Time Music Festival.Sincerely,Mister Fun & Games
Back in 1984, some producers for West German television produced a documentary about Blues music called “Survivors: The Blues Today.” I remember seeing it at the Cedar Cultural Center when I was a college student. What a nerd I was. I couldn’t help it though. Not only did I love Blues music, but this obscure documentary was filmed entirely at the old Wilebski’s Blues Saloon over in the Frog Town neighborhood of St. Paul. I had to go see it.
The movie has some great performances including some by local Blues bands at the time–Willie Murphy & The Bumble Bees and The Minnesota Barking Ducks. The movie also featured performances by John Lee Hooker, Dr. John and the Gravenites-Cipolina Band. This group featured Nick “The Greek” Gravenites–a long time 60’s blues and rock guy who wrote and produced songs for many artists including Janis Joplin and Paul Butterfield. He also was a founding member of the 60’s San Francisco group, The Electric Flag (which included Buddy Miles and Michael Bloomfield). John Cipolina was the lead guitar player for another old 60’s hippie band–Quicksilver Messenger Service.
There are not many clips out there from this old documentary. Every time someone posts a clip, the German producers file a cease and desist and the videos are taken down. For some reason, however, the two clips below remain on YouTube. You should check them out. Not only is it great to see video of the Minnesota Barking Ducks in their prime, but it is also cool to see the interior of the old Wilebski’s Blues Saloon.
If you like Blues and Rock N Roll music, then you might like The Fun Time Music Festival. A web exclusive music program on KFAI.org.
It was 1979. Devo, The B-52’s and The Talking Heads had been on Saturday Night Live and blew everyone away prompting the popularity of New Wave music. There was not just New Wave back then, there was No Wave and also Now Wave (what the difference was, I don’t know). Wanting to take advantage of this new style of music, Capital Records sent out the “Now Wave Sampler” to all the records stores. The Sampler was a .45 rpm record with four songs by alleged Now Wave artists. It was free for record store patrons to take home with them. Pretty much everyone I knew grabbed one. Nothing became of these artists. They faded almost as soon as the Now Wave Sampler was printed.
If you’re curious to know more, the old blog post linked to below covers the Now Wave Sampler phenomenon pretty thoroughly.
The song, “Take Me To Your Leader” by the Sinceros is missing from this blog post. However, if you tune into the new episode of the Fun Time Music Festival, you just might hear it (wink, wink).