We had a band practice for the first time in 13 years on Saturday. We had three out of four of us. I’m the singer. I’ll go to my grave amazed that talented people are willing to put up with me. But, hey, count your blessings. I guess I add something. Boyish enthusiasm, maybe. Our drummer played guitar at the practice, which he’s actually better at these days, and since his drums have been at someone else’s house for some number of years. He showed up nattily attired in a Ramones t-shirt. I had my Eyeliners t-shirt on. Our monstrously good guitar player, who can take five notes you whistle and turn it into a rock song, is in New York now. But we decided to just get started despite age, fat, decayed skills and absence of our best guy. The goal: twelve songs, 25-30 minute set performable somewhere in Chicagoland sometime reasonably soon. In other words, we aint in any hurry. We’re all keepin’ our day jobs. We decided we’d try a bunch of covers, and as we got going on that we’d maybe see if inspiration struck for some new originals. We’ll resurrect a few of our old originals as a last resort. We rehearsed “Don’t Push Me Around” by the Zeros, “Cesare Said” by Buck, “Everything’s Geometry” by cub (which I’m not sure works with a guy singin’ it …), “Spare Change” by the late, great Chicago all-girl band Bhang Revival. We took a swing at “Pancho and Lefty”, which may not work out, though I still have hope for it, it is such a good song. And we did a shorter version of our old cover of Ace Frehley’s cover of the Rolling Stones’ “2000 Man”. So far so good. I drank Pilsner Urquell throughout, which worked well for me. My kids sat on the basement stairs and watched this whole thing, with unreadable expressions. They seemed to like it OK, once they got used to it. They are stuck with a “weird” Dad. Could be worse. At least we have health insurance.
If this band ever actually plays out, I’ll announce it here. Road trip to Chicago. All ChicagoBoyz readers can crash on my living room floor. Ha. Just kidding.
(I see there are two copies of our ancient vinyl 7 inch ep, only 5 Euros! Woo hoo!)
9 thoughts on “Band Practice”
The floor? I thought you said I could have the couch. But yeah, this band thing is very cool. I like the road trip concept but it’s so ’80s. You should set up a download site.
As long as you’re doing covers, I’d like to request “Body Bag” by The Effigies. (My kids are too young to think I’m a dork yet, but not for long)
Andy, I recall that tune well. A Chicago classic — referring to the DC-10 crash, a Chicago disaster. Still, we are more in the vein of what is now called pop/punk, and the effigies were proto-hardcore. I have a lengthy and violent sermon I preach against hardcore. I may share it with our readers one day. Plus if we play an Effigies cover in Chicago, we will necessarily be (fairly) damned by comparison to the legend they are. I’d rather hit ’em with the obscure stuff which will allow us to be judged on our own performance. And if one or two oddballs recognize some of these old chestnuts, well OK then.
Jonathan, that was a standing offer, so the couch is yours. See, ask and you shall receive. All others, we’ll need to negotiate.
Like the blog, if I’m ever in Chicago (say a few months from now if things work out a certain way with the young lady I’m seeing) I wouldn’t mind buying some member of the blog team a beer, or sandwhich, or whatever.
You are too kind. Just thinking of a BC reunion has my blood up. I’ll get working on the new stuff. Hell, maybe we can jam by conference call or internet phone. Was driving through Pennsylvania in the middle of the night and tuned into the Penn State radio station. Caught The Ataris doing that Don Henley song “Boys of Summer.” Wow, did it rock. I wold love to try Suspect Device, too.
Missed the recently reformed Wire in NYC. Also, missed just about every show in the past six years. That’s family life hereabouts. Some day…
Mark, git yer Serbian ass on a plane and git d’f**k out here. There’s recently rehabbed TELEBLASTER (Yes THE Teleblaster) with a new, second pick-up: from a Sears Silvertone. It’s down in the basement. It’s saying, “play me, baby”.
Ah, yes, the Teleblaster. FYI, this fabled axe was the first guitar of the late Jim Ellison, of Material Issue [http://184.108.40.206/searchq=cache:2NQ4jkGS1oUJ:www.warr.org/material.html+material+issue&hl=en&ie=UTF-8]. At that time it was painted with pine green housepaint and had the word “Teleblaster!” in cursive gold letters on the headstock. Jim had swapped it for a hollowbody Gretch copy to a young guitarist [http://www.rockabilly.net/rockinbilly/] who went on to blow up my heart AND my antique, creme colored Fender amp head during the same show at Batteries Not Included. Somehow in the ruins of our relationship, I ended up with the coveted Teleblaster! which served me so well as a backup guitar in my band (www.barbiearmy.8m.com). The guitar had this endearing quality (caused by some kind of short)of its volume going from zero to eleven at random.
Years later, God knows why, I sold the ‘blaster to Bald Cow’s guitarist, MM, as my rock career had collapsed in ruins and I was clearing out band equipment. He stripped it of its house paint to a gnarly undercoat of tan and wood. But I always regretted its loss and he gave it back to me as a wedding present when I happily married “Lexington Green” in 1992.
Last month the same young guitarist (who now runs a guitar repair store) fixed the ‘blaster’s zero-to-eleven feature so that the volume control knob actually works. And in the process, he put in the afore-mentioned Silvertone pickup (created by welding together two metal lipstick tube lids). The Teleblaster! rides again–and better than ever.
Reading over this, I remember when I used to scornfully mock middle-aged men who came up to me and tried to make conversation by spewing details about their expensive guitars and amps. I guess I am just as pathetic now.
When Lex takes our 8 year old son to see Los Straightjackets tomorrow night on the 4th of July, hopefully the lad will get the surf bug and I can bequeath the ‘blaster to him in a couple of years. A guitar with such a history should not be left in its dusty case too long.
Mrs. Lexington Green
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