Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Don't Cramp My Style, I'm A Real Wild Child!


So now The InVictas are playing all over the state of Michigan, getting great response from the audiences, making money playing the bar gigs and the private functions, and generally having a great time.  The radio guys know us and make sure to book us every chance they get.

We order snazzy, metallic red lame' tuxedo jackets from Saxony in New York.  We replace Del's National guitar with a real Fender bass.  We buy matching, Airline amps from Monkey Ward.  We hit the formal wear shops in Flint and buy some powder blue dinner jackets.  We hit Robert Hall (where the values go up, up, up... and the prices go down, down, down...) for matching, olive green blazers, and charcoal grey (never black) slacks.  In general we not only sounded like pros, we LOOKED like pros too.

We start booking sessions at recording studios, cutting demos of our original stuff.  Tunes like "Intrigue," "The Fox," "Caravan" and others, hoping a label will pick us up.

In general things are going quite nicely, except...

See, here's the thing about being a drummer in a rock-n-roll band... the girls couldn't care less.  Oh they go nuts over the singer, the guitar player, the guy who grunts the guitar player's gear... all of those guys.  The drummer?  No respect.

So here I am, in a popular rock-n-roll band back in 1960.  We're playing at some dance and the girls are screaming their heads off, but once we get off stage the one without a date is... guess who.  I seriously had to address this issue.

Bibber reminded me of this incident last year, so if the details are sketchy forgive me. Here's what I remember.  We were in Caseville, holed up in cabin and completely broke.  It was to the point where Mikulski was eating hot dog relish. We had no soap, so we boiled our socks in the same pot we cooked hot dogs . In fact all there was to eat were hot dogs and Fizzies, an effervescent drink tablet, that you put in water.  They'd fizz up and add a soda like element to the water.  They came in different flavors.  Just for grins I stuck a lemon one in my mouth and WHAM! it fizzed up like mad.  I had a ton of yellow bubbles coming out of my mouth.  Hmmmmmmm... there was a red one left, I saved it for the show.

That night I shoved the thing in my mouth and, sure enough I had red fizz all over my face.  The girls started screaming all right... so did the boys, the promoter, the cop at the door, and the parents who were there as chaperones!  They thought I was going into shock, foaming blood at the mouth.  Years later Gene Simmons made about 900 Bazillion bucks off a similar stunt.  Better costume though.

I STILL couldn't get a date, especially after THAT little display.  I did get a new nickname however.  From that day on I was "The Wild Child!"


Dick Johnston adds:

Pat, What a hoot that Fizzie thing was!  And wasn't that the time we put the word out that we were havin' a party after the gig?  As I recall wasn't there maybe 150-200 showed up at a road side cabin that slept 6 at the most!  We had to push the couch tight against the wall so we could set the amps up on the back of it!

The sax, guitar, bass and I think the singer, stood on the couch cushions so there was room to play!!  Suddenly, the crowd was hushed by the sound of the owner shouting at the top of his lungs, "JOSH WANT NO DANCE"!!!

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