Back to Home Page
meet the band ticket information jukebox multimedia visitortome mailing list

IF WE HAD TO GREASE our hair back one more time, let it be with water soluble Groom and Clean or Dippity Doo, anything but Dixie Peach pomade.

Finally, Day One arrived, and once again we revved up the time machine for a last spin around our home track at Saint Mary's. Same deal as Cal Berkeley's Alpha Phi party, only twice the number of people outside on this warm Spring evening. This time the Family, whose numbers included two sets of identical twins who routinely hung their peers by their cuffs from San Francisco's Army Street overpass, arrived on the hood, roof and fenders of an early 50's Merc. Under the baton of future San Francisco Police Lieutenant, the late George Stasko, the Family heckled the peaceniks and held the stunned natives rapt with their compelling switchblade, uh, choreography.

With neck bowed and ears bent back, the Mighty Quinn led off with "Daddy Cool". Howling like wolves amidst the trees surrounding the amphitheater, the crowd Whee-oohed along with the Whackettes on "Dedicated to the One I Love"; and gasped as one when Craig collapsed off the stage in the throes of death at the climax of "Teen Angel". (see video page -- "Circa 1970" ) All the while Laz, now Rocco Vaselino, and the boys wept, prayed and shoveled like rockin' grave diggers behind him.

At the end, the audience went silent like the bubbles on Sea Hunt. The vibrato-laced strains of "Sleepwalk" colored the night air and Julio preached to the choir about another world, one as removed from the Nixon era as was the scent of Jade East from the stink of Patchouli Oil -- the story of Cousin Chui and his neighbor Yolanda; a Passion Play, really, that compared the squeegee sound of Chui's kissing to the swishing of windshield wipers recalling in the same sentence the sacred images of cashmere, Frederick's of Hollywood and tuck and roll interior (the Chicano trifecta)-- a seamless segue to the finale, "Goodnight my Love".

After six months of planing and rehearsal, Day One had come and gone. Our mission was accomplished; our career was over.

Not so fast.

Quite fortuitously, in the summer of 1971, Butch Whacks & the Glass Packs became widely known in the Bay Area for the sound of our name, not the sound of our music. We owe that serendipity to KSFO DJ Terry McGovern who had just launched a one-hour show each evening dedicated to teen age death songs- "The Endless Sleep", "Tell Laura I love her", "Moody River" and the like, under of the nom de plume, "Richie Vatulla".

Terry/Richie spent the drive time slot plaintively searching o'er the airwaves for his long lost group - the Blue Flames. Since the Blue Flames were not to be found, Terry (also a comedian who cameoed in American Graffiti as the how-do-you-like-these-etchings? school teacher) aimed his beacon at any group anywhere who specialized in the musical stylings of the mythic Blue Flames, somebody somewhere who could sing "Little Star" with a straight face, an actual combo that could back him up for real at a Midsummer's night sock hop at Lowell High School in San Francisco.

With opportunity a knockin', someone, lets call him a little bird, but someone and we won't mention any names shameless Craig, but someone called Terry/Richie and told him about this new group at Saint Mary's College across the Bay in Moraga tearing it up at frat parties known as "Butch Whacks & the Glass Packs". Zooom. We were instantly on the air; and back in business.


  © 2005 Butch Whacks & the Glass Packs