When did you begin seriously listening to Top 40 radio?
In 1962 I was twelve years old and I remember hearing
"The Fish" by Bobby Rydell, "It Will Stand"
by the Showmen, and "Cupid" by Sam Cooke. I had
a 21 year old sister and up till then I had only heard her
Broadway show albums. They were so boring and the songs
on the radio were infectious and stirring. It spoke to me.
I remember watching American Bandstand and trying to look
thin, dark, and Italian. I was fat, white, and Irish. That
gap between fantasy and reality has led to many dark and
unholy places. But I did learn how to dress by watching
station and where?
KFXM-FM in San Bernardino as I recall. BOSS SOUNDS!
of KFXM I later turned to XERB out of Mexico with the Wolfman.
better or worse, earliest songs etched in your memory:
Earliest songs were "It will Stand" by the
Showmen, "Cupid" by Sam Cooke, "Soldier Boy"
by the Shirelles, and "Raindrops" by Dee Clark.
Also, some bizarre song my sister owned called "Battlin'
Joe" by the French actor, Yves Montand.
stranded in the jungle, ten songs you would take:
1. Like A Rolling Stone by Bob Dylan 2. Surfer Girl
by The Beach Boys 3. Mr. Tambourine Man by Bob Dylan 4.
Blues From An Airplane by Jefferson Airplane 5. Have A Little
Faith In Me by John Hiatt 6. What's Goin On by Marvin Gaye
7. Born to Run by Bruce Springstein 8. Runaround Sue by
Dion 9. Sail On Sailor by the Beachboys 10. I Was Born To
Love Her by Stevie Wonder
few records owned and why:
Freewheelin/Bob Dylan; Bob Dylan/Bob Dylan; Blues Rags &
Hollers/Spider John Koerner, Dave Snaker Ray, and Little
Sun Glover; Ragged But Right by the Greenbrier Boys; Jim
Kweskin Jug Band; John Lee Hooker's Blues/John Lee Hooker;
Folkways greatest songs/Woody Guthrie - What can I say...I
was a 13 year old white blues singer.
Song, a Hit the first time you heard it and why:
Like A Rolling Stone - It started with the wicked rim shot
at the beginning. No other song has consolidated American
music like it did. Listen to it and you can even hear La
Bamba in it. No damn song has ever meant so much. Hands
down the great anthem of twentieth century America. As big
as the Bible.
trace of show business in your blood:
My mom moved from Indianola, Iowa to Hollywood California
in 1939. The reason...so she could be in the movies. Enough
performance in front of a captive audience:
1964 The Twigs. Notre Dame High School, Riverside California.
Battle of Bands. Shakin it down with My Generation. Marachas
explode to vapor at the end of the song. Winner - The Twigs
Lead Singer - The Mighty Quinn
the ages of 6 and 16 what was your favorite radio station:
The show was Dave Diamond in the Diamond Mine. I think it
the ages of 6 and 16 your average daily exposure to music?
Every waking moment.
uses of music (this one's for Julio but if you can answer
8th grade graduation party from St. Catherine's School.
Jody Staylor has announced she is my girlfriend. One problem,
she is leaving for Nova Scotia. One night. A party at Phil
Hergenrater's house. I had them play "Sealed With A
Kiss" by Brian Hyland and "Put Your Head On My
Shoulder" by Paul Anka over and over. First memory
the smell of perfume the feel of Angora on my cheek, my
first kiss. The horror when she runs off with the girls
and discusses the issue of the TONGUE. But in the end, the
music worked. It never fails.
of first band?
repertoire of first band?
I'm A Road Runner/Pretty Things,My Generation/Who,
Taste of Honey/The Beatles, Boom Boom Boom Boom/John Lee
Hooker,Who Do You Love/Bo Diddley
musical influences and why:
Bob Dylan Bob Dylan Bob Dylan why not?
ages of 6 and 16 favorite comedians?
I don't remember comedians then. Vaughn Meader, Jerry Lewis,
W.C. Fields. I don't remember standup comedians in the 60s.
line of earliest joke you can recall:
"wrecked him hell, damn near killed him."
or what influenced your sense of humor?
did you first hear the name BWGP?
When we made it up.
and why did you join BWGP?
To be honest with you, I was in a clinical depression and
could barely leave my dorm without getting totally drunk.
It seemed like a good form of therapy.
recollection of performing with BWGP?
Playing in some sorority at Berkeley. Jocks, greasers,
sweaty bodies. And crashers. Reminded me of the party in
the movie Big Wednesday.
desperate BWGP moment:
Eating grits for a couple of days when we had no money.
(I just read other guys recollections in the band and it
jarred my memory. Definitely King Richards in Oakland in
black face. No person in this band could understand the
total horror I felt standing on stage in front of an audience
of whites and blacks. In my mind I felt like guys in the
audience were yelling "dance" and shooting at
my feet. All I could do was smile and sing. Ironically in
the end, all I could say was now I know what it's like to
embarrassing moment performing with BWGP:
Falling down from the top of the stage at The Cave in Vancouver.
I pulled out all the electricity in the process. Also, one
time I flew off the stage at Keystone Berkeley and ran into
a quadraplegic in the audience. All I remember is the horror
on his face while he tried to push the pencil to move his
wheel chair. It was a pitiful moment. (by the way I have
large gaps in my memory about the '70s. Would someone explain
to me what was so dramatic about the baby powder at the
Playboy Club. All I remember about Chicago were the bunnies,
Oster's drug infested hotel room, and of course, the Mexican
restaurant where, at a going away party, we ended up paying
for the entire room. Oh yeah, also the bunnies.
recollection of BWGP:
All of them. I feel very blessed I was included in
the family. I was not particularly talented but pushed enough
I could take it over the top. I really miss living in San
Francisco and not being able to enjoy that part of my life.
I miss the guys the most. I will always have great memories.
Back then. I always liked Tell Laura
so finest sketches:
I never found the humor in my hillbilly character, whatever
his name was.
BWGP moment (on or of stage):
Marauding rednecks in Rome Georgia trying to get on
the stage and beat us up. Unfortunately, their hiding space
in front of the 4'x6' neon sign was inadequate. They were
exposed mid-stride and thrown bodily out of the club by
the bouncers. Also, trying to sing at the Coalyard totally
drunk on qualudes. Jerry asked me to sit in the front and
watch that night.
do you explain your role in BWGP the 19th Annual Farwell
Performance to new friends or colleagues who have never
heard of BWGP and didn't know you have a secret closet life?
I've spent most of my life in the music business in
Nashville. I am always shocked at the amount of people that
saw Butch Whacks. Musicians, agents, managers, studio people.
Butch Whacks doesn't exist with most of my friends here,
it would take to long to explain it and they'd never believe