Happy new year! I am invoking nostalgia today—working on a new Ear Reverends podcast that features an interview with my cousin Dean Fienberg about the worst song ever written, that we wrote together, circa 1983. (Hope to get that up in the next day or so.)
Going with the nostalgia, since both Bre Pettis and Lee LeFever tagged me in the five things you don’t know about me blog game, I’ve decided to play it here and now in the form of “five things from the 1980s that you don’t know or remember about me.”
- The first live music show I saw was the Ramones at the Hollywood Palladium on April 10, 1980. I was still under 5′ tall. I went with my friend Loren Philip. Several people whom I didn’t know at the time, but who were also at the show, would later become my good friends. It was an incredible show.
- So, it’d be fair-enough to categorize me as: one of those kids who saw the Ramones and then went out and started their own bands. My first band was Popped Oxheart, which was led by Bernard Bernard (who also was at that Ramones’ show). Popped Oxheart’s active career spanned from morning to afternoon on November 27, 1981, during which I recorded a 30-minute side of a cassette, labeled “Jay’s Garage.” In 2006, I remastered “Jay’s Garage” for private release on CD. (btw, if any of the other members of Popped Oxheart are reading this: contact me—I’d love to hear from you, and I’ll send you a copy of the CD!!)
- From ’81 to the present, Bernard Bernard has been my best friend and musical collaborator. Most recently, we’ve been talking about releasing a CD compilation of Slobot, our band with Eduard Margidan that I recorded on cassette in 1986. In 2006, I finished remastering all of the Slobot tapes for CD—so, maybe we’ll release a Slobot CD in 2007.
- Speaking of bands and my friend Loren, when we lived in Santa Cruz, he once (circa 1988) got himself a gig playing a big party at Davenport beach. He didn’t have a band or songs per se, and I don’t remember how it all came together. But, I do remember that we ended up on a makeshift stage on the beach in front of 150+ people, and that I improvised on guitar for two hours or so, up until the police came. Some people came up to me afterwards and said they really liked the music!
- From ’83 to ’87, I gigged a lot in LA, especially with a band called Man on Fire (’85 – ’87). We played pretty much all of the classic Hollywood clubs that were left at the time, plus many of the less-classic West LA / Santa Monica and Valley clubs: the Whiskey, Roxy, Troubador, Central (later called the Viper Room), Palamino, Madame Wongs West (we played there every month), Hop Singhs, and others whose names escape me. We also did a big outdoor show as part of the L.A. Festival in 1987, which apparently made me a famous rock star in many non-English-speaking tourists’ photos.
So, in order to perpetuate the five things game, I should tag five more people. But, pretty much everyone I know with a blog has already been tagged. So, I’ll just change the game: anyone can play, no need for invitations—what are five things from the 1980s that we don’t know or remember about you?