Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Gloucester Battle of the bands 1986

  My recent re-viewing of Scott Pilgrim vs the World brought back memories of Gloucester Teen Talent Battle of the bands. These are one of those rare times where you wish ill will and heaps of misfortune on your co-competitors. Something bad happens to some band during their act like some amp going down or someone breaking a guitar string and you are like "Yeah! Turn up the 'suck-o-meter'! Let's have more of that!".

I guess it's like watching Olympic figure skating and you're screaming at the non-Canadian skaters to fall on their asses or for some trailer-trash husband to come out of an alley with a lead pipe to the knee(or whatever it was in the Kerrigan affair).

The first year we did it in 1986 we had auditioned with one singer, landed a spot and then had to switch singers for the competition (long story). So we had a new singer and only one song we all knew, a cover of 'Everybody wants to rule the world' by Tears for Fears. We were up against 3 or 4 other bands but the one we thought was the best were a group called 'The Related'. Apparently most of them were all actually related somehow, cousins and so forth. We secretly believed the relations had to do with inbreeding and affectionately referred to them as "The Retarded" (political correctness being non-existant in 1986), because we hated them for no reason. We were called 'After the Fact' and they apparently had a nickname for us involving a slang for homosexuals.

Truth be told they were a better band than us. They had a horn section and everything. They also understood about image. They showed up to events (movies, rock concerts they were not playing in) as a group and were kind of all wearing the same clothes (Duran Duran suits of different pastel colors. The guitarist had a 'duster' remember those?) so they beat us handily. I'm not sure what happened to the band but their football linebacker drummer showed up at my door once sell me a vacuum cleaner. If he sold another two he was going to win a trip to Disneyland (we did not buy it). My friend Mike's mother made the guy clean half the house as part of the demo and didn't buy it either! Muhahahahahaha!

The next year we were much more polished and stood a good chance to win but our main competition was a great band called "Back to Front". They had a sampler. GAME OVER! (Ooh my god they have a sampler!). They had a great song called "I'll Wait" and they started the song with the sampler going "I"ll Wait.. I' - I' - I'll Wait!". It was pretty awesome. It looked like they were gonna beat us too, but on the second night, their sampler broke down and the guitarist blew something in his amp and the whole song had no guitar. He basically air-guitar-ed the song. HAHAHAHAHA! There's hope! We went out and nailed a great performance but WE STILL LOST!

Our drummer went out and bought a sampler the next week.


Anonymous said...

Too funny! I remember Back to Front! Great band. Still think you guys were better and more talented!! Well at least more so than my band who didn't make it into the show because our drummer took too long to set up for the audition!! LOL!

chckn8r said...

Hey who's that fantastically hansome keyboardist in the white shirt? :)

chckn8r said...

Man, what memories Dave...

Yeah, I remember losing that battle - Sandy held up newspaper with the headline "US bombs Libya" or something like that and the judges used the "political message" as an excuse of why we lost. Laaaaammmme!!!

Ah, good times and samplers... :D