About a year ago, shortly after I joined the Electronic Cottage community, Hal McGee introduced me to the music and persona of Florida music legend, Danny McGuire aka Jiblit Dupree.
Hal sent me a link to the 2012 album that he and Danny did entitled Jiblit Dupree and Hal McGee Love You. To paraphrase the album description, Jiblit Dupree and Hal McGee Love You “combines trailer trash, country blues, noise, punk and comedy into a blend that sounds quite unlike anything else.” I instantly became a fan of the irreverent, “something to offend everyone” lyrics and the whacked-out take on good ol’ country, rock ‘n’ roll and noise that rivals anything my beloved Residents have ever done, that’s darn for sure.
Since then I’ve enjoyed Jiblit’s appearances at a number of Apartment Music shows as well as his albums with his first band Waterdigger, his solo work and numerous collaborations. In follow up to an interview that we had started via Facebook Messenger, I got the opportunity to sit down and chat with Danny in late June when he and I performed at Apartment Music 34 in Gainesville. Hal McGee and Mark McGee joined us for the conversation which was full of laughs but serious moments too as we discussed the controversies, the music and the philosophy of Jiblit Dupree.
LS: Where did you grow up?
JD: I grew up in Winter Haven, Florida. The hometown of Gram Parsons and Jiblit
LS: What or who first inspired you to pick up the guitar, write songs and sing?
JD: My first music memory is hearing The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine and seeing the movie in a drive-in with my parents. I don’t think anyone in particular inspired me but I did like Bob Dylan from a young age and still do as an old man.
LS: Who is your favorite writer? Who is your favorite comedian?
JD: My favorite writer would be Ronny Elliott. He has written no books I know of but he writes a blog and posts on Facebook everyday and plenty of my favorite songs. My favorite comedian is easily Richard Pryor.
LS: What about Nick Cave or Thurston Moore/Sonic Youth?
JD: Yeah, I dig Nick Cave’s songs a bunch and Thurston’s too. I’ve met Thurston a couple times. A real nice guy-- I don’t care what anyone says. I saw him play in Tampa with Chelsea Light Moving. I drunkenly interviewed him in the parking lot and took pictures. Then he drove the van so I saw that he wasn’t as big of a rock star as I thought he was. (Laughs) That gave me a whole new image of him. Just made me think that he wasn’t as big of a celebrity as I thought he was. He broke a guitar string that night and I’ve got it hanging on my wall. He did spoken word poetry while someone changed the guitar string out so we got something special that night. It was awesome--a killer concert. I’d seen Sonic Youth before, way back in the day. I think Lou Reed might be the one that sunk in the most for me.
LS: When did you get into Noise? What was your first band?
JD: I first found out about the International Noise Conference at a train depot in Tampa. That was a decade or two ago. It blew my damn mind. Within six months I was playing noise shows with Hunker Down Roy, a band I started with Don Butler. Don was also the bass player in my first band, Waterdigger.
(Hunker Down Roy performing at Hal McGee’s 51st birthday party)
LS: How did you come up with the name/moniker Jiblit Dupree?
JD: Jiblit Dupree is a name one of my old friends was calling one of his friends and I just stole it. Jiblit Dupree is a worldwide superstar and Danny McGuire is just some regular ole guy that works a bunch.
LS: What inspires your lyrics?
JD: My lyrics are inspired by whatever takes away the pain of everyday life. Also (they can be) about someone I’m trying to get in touch with, whatever that means. They can be something I think up while working or when I wake up from a dream. Usually it’s just stupid songs that I make up at work. I think, “These people need to hear this. I bet that they ain’t heard this one yet!” Like “Granny is Better”. Who would think up that kind of shit?
LS: How did you develop your cool guitar style? I saw you wearing a Jimi Hendrix t-shirt in one of your Instagram postings—is he an influence for you?
JD: I have tried not to learn much about playing because the technical players bore the shit out of me. Yeah, Hendrix is an influence but I could never play like him or even want to. My style is the only way I know how to play. Like David Fair of Half Japanese says, “You can play it fast or you can play it slow, you can play these high notes or you can play these low notes. Now you know how to play guitar.” That’s the best guitar lesson there is.
LS: I understand that you’ve got a great guitar and amp collection. What are some of your favorites in your collection?
JD: I’ve got a little yellow guitar that sounds like Godzilla that’s my favorite. Ronny Elliott sold me that one and I bet he regrets it. I’ve got a ‘63 Silvertone that looks brand new. I also have a ‘73 Gibson SG that’s real nice. This list could go on for way too long and nobody better rob me, thank ya very much.
LS: How many instruments do you play? You were good on the Jew’s harp.
JD: I play them all, I just don’t play them good (laughs). (However), I’m the Jimi Hendrix of the Jew’s harp. That has gotten me into a lot of places. My first time playing was on stage with Ronny Elliott, in front of about eight hundred people. Scared the shit out of me. (Laughs) A lot of times I don’t play guitar. I played the synthesizer once on a Bruce Springsteen song.
LS: Was that on Spring A Leak? Which song did you play synth on?
JD: “Hungry Heart”. (The song on the Spring A Leak album is entitled “Famished Beater.”) Hal and I did that album.
LS: How did The Dusty Twang and The Quantum Singularity come about? If there was any justice in this world you all would’ve been bigger than Mazzy Star and living it up in the Hollywood Hills.
JD: Dusty Twang came about from me and Jesi Langdale wanting to terrorize the world but only getting around Florida. We toured from one end to the other. We played massive stages and played a porch in Gainesville the day MJ (Michael Jackson) died. We stayed drunk and played shows with the biggest noise big shots in the world!
LS: You are very prolific and have worked with so many terrific folks. Which of your collaborations and albums do you think are the best?
JD: As far as playing with different people, they are all great and I’m very thankful. The list of people would be in the hundreds, seriously. As far as my favorite music, I’ve been a part of the two Waterdigger albums and Jiblit Dupree’s Songs for Her. Someone real special inspired that album and she knows who she is. The girl on the cover of Songs for Her is Jocelyn Lindsay Ring. She is the artist who did the two Waterdigger album covers. Can’t forget her!
LS: We Are Not A Project - We Are A Band by Noticer is another great album by Jiblit Dupree and Hal McGee. What one would call a “stone cold classic”:
LS: Do you consider The Rot Guts your current band?
JD: The Rot Guts is a super group of individuals that one can name drop all day long. It’s hard for us to get through a practice being the intellectuals that we are. We actually don’t call it practice. It’s more of a meeting of the minds. Yes, we hope to record. In addition to me, The Rot Guts are Dan Reaves on bass and Greg Leibowitz on drums.
I didn’t tell you the story of us getting shut down at a big outdoor festival. Those lyrics of mine got us shut down.
LS: What were you singing?
JD: “She Goes Both Ways.” There was something before that, and they come running towards the stage, in between songs. The soundman come running, “Hey man, you’re going to have to cut back on them lyrics. They are kind of rough. This is a family crowd that we’ve got here today. You’ve got to cut back some. “ And then we played “She Goes Both Ways” and I guess that was too much for them. They come running up in the middle of the song and pulled the plug on us. “That’s it. Y’all gone!” And it was so hot out there, I’m glad they pulled the plug. They didn’t have a roof on the stage and it was all black. Man, it felt like it was 150 degrees out there. I was like “Thank God, they pulled the plug on us.” And I had to work that night. Out there being rock stars in that kind of heat. Rock ‘n’ roll ain’t easy.
Waterdigger's version of "She Goes Both Ways".
LS: What about the Redneckisms like on Jiblit Dupree and Hal McGee Love You? I know that it upset some people.
JD: I didn’t know that I had any Redneckisms. That was the point of that album to be as crazy and stupid as we could be. Offensive—we meant to be offensive.
LS: What’s fun about being offensive for you?
JD: Like Richard Pryor, he couldn’t perform nowadays because everyone is so
politically correct. It is kind of like that. I try to be as crazy and offensive as possible.
LS: You want to get under people’s skin?
JD: Yep. Like Andrew Dice Clay. We watch him at work and he is extremely offensive but funny too. It’s so shocking the shit he says. I don’t know how it couldn’t be funny. He is saying the stuff that everyone is thinking but wouldn’t say in front of anybody. He is saying it in front of everybody. But he’s gotten rich off of it; I’ve haven’t yet! I don’t think that I could be as offensive as that guy. My god! He’s an offensive cartoon.
Two Live Crew played in my hometown. I saw them back in the day. Back when they had all their controversies going on. So maybe that had something to do with me. Yep, blame it on the Two Live Crew. They blew my mind the first few times that I heard them. For me, they were the first to make really nasty songs. And Blowfly. I met him a few times. When he played the New World Brewery in Ybor City, his band had just quit on him and took off down the street, drinking somewhere else. So Ed Lowry’s band was his back up band that night. (Ed Lowry was in Waterdigger and the drummer on Welcome to Seminole Heights.)
LS: I asked you about Nick Cave—I know that you posted his “No Pussy Blues.” He did a good live version of that. I noticed that in the comment section, a number of women posted and said “I can’t believe that is his problem.” Do you think that was his problem?
JD: Apparently it was when he wrote that song. He probably has had some dry periods. (Laughs) That would be a good song. “Even Nick Cave Has Dry Periods.” (Laughs) Or “Nick Cave Ain’t Got Any in Awhile so He Wrote Some Songs.” (Laughs)
I asked Sylvie Simmons, Mojo magazine contributor and author of the book, I’m Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen, to give Leonard Cohen a message. I’m not sure if she did. I wrote a song called, “Leonard Cohen and Jack Daniel’s Couldn’t Get Me Laid.” (Laughs) It’s about how I took this girl to see Leonard Cohen and we were drinking Jack Daniel’s all night and it didn’t get me nowhere. You think I’d be in, you know. Those were some expensive tickets. And he did a three hour show. Unbelievable shit. We were up in the balcony, on Jack Daniel’s and I couldn’t get anywhere. (Laughs) Nothing. Not even a handshake. (Laughs) Yeah, Leonard Cohen was a badass son of a bitch.
LS: Who do you think is the best one for getting someone in the mood? People talk about Barry White. Iggy Pop said that the Seeds song “Pushing Too Hard” was a good song to have sex to.
JD: Maybe Billy Squier. It was while his first album was playing that I think was the first time that I got any. It worked pretty good, apparently. I think that a Van Halen album might’ve been played too. Probably the first one. I’ve seen them four times. Never with Sammy Hagar.
[Editor's Note: Did Jiblit stop making love to change the record?]
LS: Here are some Mojo magazine type questions: What would be your Saturday night album?
JD: The Rolling Stones' Some Girls would be good for Saturday night.
LS: What would be your Sunday morning album?
JD: The Velvet Underground and Nico, of course. It’s the first song on it. I just saw the video of the Velvet Underground playing in Dallas,Texas. At a Vietnam anti-war rally in the daylight.
(Hal McGee and Mark McGee join us for the interview….)
HM: Oh my god. Did they get a stroke from being out in the sun? Because they are so vampirishly white?
JD: There are all these hippies out in this field watching them. They are playing (starts singing) “I’m Waiting for the Man”. They did a slow, country version of it. And then they played “I’m Set Free” and “Beginning to See the Light.” And there are all these people out there not knowing what they are witnessing. I’ve seen a bunch of bands like that. They could’ve been the Velvet Underground but they turned out to be nothin’. Because people didn’t go and pay attention to them.
Like Pull Out Method from Tampa. The best album to ever come out of Tampa and nobody has ever heard it. It’s a classic. They should have been worldwide famous. It wasn’t nothing but a bass player and a drummer. It was like seeing pure evil. (Laughs). The first time I seen them, I said to myself, “God, this is pure evil.” They just sounded evil. Like nothing I never heard before. I went and saw them every chance I got.
LS: Are they still making music?
JB: The drummer does. I don’t think the bass player does anymore. He got
domesticated with family. Started making them babies instead of music (Laughs.) Ya see if I was on that Four Loko right now this interview would have gone a whole lot better. Because I’d be talking about all kinds of crazy shit. You got to get the liquor in me.
LS: Okay, staying in the Mojo vein, they always ask the question, what do you think happens after we die? Where do we go?
JB: Oh God, I don’t know if I ever read that in Mojo. You’re getting real deep on me now. I’m the wrong person to ask that one. You need to ask the person who created all of this shit to begin with. Okay, I know exactly where we go. We go somewhere where we got more of this torturous life for another lifetime somewhere else. It’s just endless torture. Over and over and over. So that’s what you’ve got to look forward to, more of this shit. Over and over and over again. They say heaven and hell is in your brain. Maybe it is. We will find out when the day comes and the heart quits beating. Yep. That’s the only way we are ever to know. But we’re going to find out. If it turns out that religion was only to keep people in line, I’m going to be very pissed off. There was a lot of years where I behaved myself. I was a church boy for five years. I don’t want to know that I was just wasting those five years. Those five years better pay off for something.
LS: Did you sing in the church choir like Keith Richards?
JD: I did back during that time.
LS: Do you believe in God?
JD: Yep, I don’t think that it was an accident. Nope. We might be God’s entertainment of some sort that is all I can figure. If I was God I would create something to entertain myself. Yep! (Laughs)
HM: Do you create your own mythology? Based on your life? For instance, you seem to have a lot of themes that you consistently go back to in your music over the course of the years and there seems to be a set of characters you go to.
JD: I did not even know that.
HM: Are you a storyteller? Are all the stories you tell based on personal experiences? Or are they hypothetical situations?
JD: Yeah. Some are (based on personal experiences), some are made up. And if they ain’t involving me, they are involving someone else. They are true stories, one way or another; from real life.
HM: Do you think that you are misunderstood? Why do you think that is?
JD: Oh yeah. Because apparently people think that I do the stuff that is in some of my songs. Apparently. Nope, I don’t have time to do all that crazy shit. I work at least 60 hours a week. I think that you are misunderstood too, Hal.
HM: Could be, could be. I’m not sure; maybe in some ways.
LS: Do you think that is what has brought the two of you together?
HM: Yeah, somewhat. I remember that when I first met Danny, I instantly liked him. We are both such different personalities but we are both Capricorns! And we are only two days apart. You are the 17th and I am the 19th of January.
JD: I’ve been recording a Goth album for about two years now. Hal McGee would never do that. He makes an album in an hour and puts it out. I’ve been dragging my feet on this one. I opened up for To Live and Shave in LA. I played some of my new dirty songs that hadn’t come out in the real world yet like “Dope Dick”. It’s going to be on my Goth album—all synthesizers, no guitars. Synthesizers and drumbeats. (Sings) “She says that he’s got a dope dick, can’t get hard.” (Laughter) I can’t even remember the rest of it. Thank God, I’ve got it recorded. It’s on my little four track hand held recorder. As long as I’ve got the recorder, I’m doing good. I’ve got twelve songs and I’m going to do a total of twenty. It’s going to be if Guided By Voices made a Goth album. Real short songs.
MM: Can I ask a Spinal Tap question? As long as you have the sex and the drugs, could you live without the rock ‘n’ roll?
JD: Nope, you can’t live without it. (More laughter.) You’ve got to have it. It’s like if you have sex, you’ve got to keep having it because you then know how good it is but before you’ve had it, you’ve got to keep living every day and it’s best not to even have sex because once you’ve had it, you’ve got to keep having it and once you hear rock ’n’ roll you’ve got to keep listening to it. There you go.
now online in a newly digitized archival reissue. Girls On Fire teams up with Psychodrama for this blown-out Noise classic before the Noise movement existed!
Album info page at HalTapes website, including liner notes, additional artwork, and reviews: http://www.haltapes.com/diary-of-a-shiteater.html
Diary of a Shiteater is a volcanic bubble of cut up samples and songs by me, Girls on Fire, with my old bandmates, who were then in the second incarnation of Psychodrama (Brett, Rob and Mark), plus snippets by other artistes and found audio —— All put through the metaphorical meat grinder with audio levels pushed into the red even more than The Velvets' White Light/White Heat, and blown out speakers crackling with distortion. Very demonic. Like a horror movie version of the documentation of the John Cage/David Tudor performance of Variations IV recorded at the Feigen/Palmer Gallery in 1963; with the distorted voices and art opening/party conversation.
Brett and Rob would send me cassette tapes and I interspersed them with the stuff I was coming up with. I don't think that I sent them the tape in advance to review or approve before it went out into the world. I also don't remember their reactions to the tape either. However, I do think that Brett came up with the name "The Chicken Fucks" and I definitely remember coming up with the name "Girls Who Hate Their Mothers". I think that we went with the different names because both of those names seemed more even more aggressive to us like the cut-up process/sounds on the tape than even Psychodrama or Girls on Fire.
includes the Girls On Fire songs--
“I Wish I was Andy Warhol”
“I Feel Sad About Tennessee Williams”
“Sylvia Plath was Smart”
“Beautiful Sexy Luscious Car Crashes”
Back in January when I was in Gainesville to perform at the wonderful Apartment Music 31 and 32 shows, I met the affable, accomplished fellow ECer and Apartment Music performer, Adam Naworal. He and his multi-talented wife, Aimee Grace Naworal perform as the duo, Tomokie’s Cup. Adam has initiated two way interviews with fellow ECer’s such as Lord Litter and Frank and kindly invited me to do one with him.
You can read Adam's interview of me here.
What inspires you to pick up a certain instrument or piece of gear? For instance,
what attracted you to the electronic bagpipes?
I always wanted to do things that others aren't doing, without trying to sound too
full of myself. The electronic bagpipes were something we found after getting actual bagpipes and finding out they were defective and INSANELY expensive to repair. I tend to go for instruments that are easy for Aimee and I to both play and learn. I also don't want to limit myself to one particular type of instrument, which goes into our decisions as well. We have synthesizers and strings and a harmonium and various other things, all of which come in handy depending on our mood and what ideas we have at the time. I truly believe that being a multi-instrumentalist opens up a vast array of creative possibilities, and I highly encourage everyone to pursue that path.
Do we survive death in any sense, and if so, do we survive for a time or forever?
I believe as long as you leave memories, acts, and art behind, you never truly die. I’m not much of a believer in afterlives and such, but I do feel the quickest way to achieve immortality is to leave a tangible piece of your life for future generations to study.
What is the story behind Waste of Tape?
Oh wow, there's a question I have genuinely never been asked! Waste Of Tape
started when I met Jim Greco. He was stunned that this nerdy little goth kid knew who Beherit was (he was wearing a Beherit shirt). We got to talking and realized we both had similar interests and thought processes, and we were both interested in doing noise as a therapeutic release. Jim was especially interested in experimenting since he's in a lot of death metal and black metal bands which require a lot of thought and practice. We recorded some really bad noisecore and then some better jokey tracks on the first day of our existence. We were throwing names back and forth and finally I said "Well, might as well call it Waste Of Tape because it's starting to look like one", upon which Jim said "STOP! THAT'S IT!" We've since evolved from mostly comedic who-gives-a-fuck-ism into
more restrained and atmospheric music, while still being jerks to each other in the best sense. Jim's a good dude and I've enjoyed creating nonsense with him for all these years.
Can mind dominate matter or does matter completely dominate mind, or has each, perhaps, a certain limited independence?
Mind CAN dominate matter, but be careful what you wish for; their limited
independence may be the best thing. When you put too much mental emphasis on physical pleasure, for example, it can be a toxic combination. I think it’s best to approach this subject on a by-case/by experience basis, since not every experience will warrant the same reaction or thought process.
What music do you listen to around the house when you are hanging out with the
Aimee and cats? Or when you are just hanging out by yourself with the cats?
My main musical interests run from noise rock and no wave to free jazz and fusion to krautrock and weird prog to early electronic and musique concrète and everything in between! That being said, I can go from listening to Girls on Fire right into Xhol and then switch to "Easy Lover" or "Games Without Frontiers" without feeling like I'm being too eclectic. A good song (or piece of music or piece of audio art) is good, regardless of genre or popularity, and I will not deny that some of the poppier stuff I enjoy would probably surprise people. A good cross section of my musical (and film) tastes can be found at my Rate Your Music page, where I operate as dotadot.
Has the Universe a purpose? Or it it driven by blind necessity? Or is it a mere
chaos and jumble in which the natural laws that we think we find are only a fantasy generated by our own love of order?
I'm not so certain the Universe has a purpose per se, but if it doesn't, that simply
makes the universe the greatest embodiment of Dada ever. Nothing wrong with that!
Legend has it that goats discovered what berry?
b. coffee berry
d. none of the above
I wanna say B!
I recall reading somewhere that goats were observed being more active after eating coffee berries and their herders thought "Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm".
If there is a cosmic scheme, has life more importance in it than astronomy would
lead us to suppose or is our emphasis upon life mere parochialism and self-importance?
I'm going to quote the recently departed Mark Hollis of Talk Talk for the last part of the question: "Life's what you make of it". I really think including others in your life leads to a healthier overall experience than being self-important or –absorbed. The EC community is proof of that!
What is your favorite Pepperidge Farm cookie?
AN: Mannnnnnn, I haven't had any of those in forever! I remember the one I liked was shortbread with caramel and chocolate; I'm not sure if they even make that anymore.
(EDIT: After reading your interview with Lucy (Bonk), the cookie she named is the one I was thinking!)
If you had one message to give to your fans, what would it be?
Never let anyone tell you that what you're doing is worthless. Always go with what your heart tells you. If you don't like something you've created (art, music, whatever), think about how to improve it and go from there. Just keep creating; your ideas should never stay in your head to the grave. In the words of Jónsi from Sigur Rós, GO DO.
has been an integral part of the Florida noise scene since the start of the new millennium. In addition to her own amazing noise work, she also collaborated with other great noise musicians/groups such as Dan Reaves, Kris Gruda, Adam Naworal and Canned Ham. She has performed at a number of Hal McGee’s magnificent Apartment Music shows as well as other noise festivals, galleries and clubs. As a big Canned Ham fan, I was thrilled and overjoyed when Hal suggested that I check out Lucy’s work on-line and reach out to her for an interview for the EC site. I was thrilled and overjoyed again when she agreed.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Saint Augustine, Florida.
When did you start making music? Did you start with playing drums as a kid?
I guess I technically started with failed piano lessons as a kid, and then progressed to the usual recorders-and-marimbas stuff in elementary school, and then was actually a low brass player (euphonium, tuba for a short spell) in middle and high school, marching band, the whole schmear. I never played drums as a kid, I was taught drumming basics by a crust punk who showed me how to play the beat to "Hey Ya!" on a crappy drum kit that was stored at the local lefty bookstore/show venue when I was about 18 and from there I just basically messed around with any kit someone would let me use.
Who or what do you consider your biggest influences?
Who- Negativland, Reed Ghazala, Forrest Mims III, Nicolas Collins, Simone Giertz, Sun Ra, various comedians.
What- Garbage, doing things because you think it’s funny and pretending it’s art.
How did you get interested in noise and the noise scene?
Circa 2004 or so my best friend and I were very into absurdist and dada stuff, even though we wouldn’t have called it that at the time. We used to do "noise busking" before I was even really properly familiar with what noise was, bringing ridiculous stuff into the streets of a tourist town to see if people would give us money for making sounds with it. They did. Mostly really drunk people. Musically it was probably realizing that the most important thing about punk rock to me was the DIY part more than the sound. And we just liked to do things that made us laugh, like "covers" done with instruments that made no sense and forcing our friends to listen to Amway tapes, etc.
Lucy Bonk/Adam Naworal at +SoLo, August 24, 2012
Bulky Acronym is a great moniker. What are all your other monikers and how did you come up with them?
Bulky Acronym is just an anagram of my full name, Lucy Mary Bonk. I mostly used it for screen names and internet stuff, but have performed under that name a few times. I actually stopped using it a while ago and will probably never revive it. ALL the monikers I’ve ever used, oh my god. I have been doing noise and stuff off and on since I was about 17 and have literally never settled on something I wanted to use forever, and I probably never will. Let’s see if I can make a list. These are mixed solo names and "band"/project names.
- Reality Executives
- Reptile Theater
- Terror Probe
- Guilt Trip (what I’m using the most currently)
- Big Church
- My real name, which people don’t believe is real half the time anyway
- SHOUEZ (a recent one off for a showcase of bad bands created on the fly)
- ECM3 (not my name idea)
- HOW RUDE
- Phantom Prank Device
- I’m Pregnant (another one-off)
That’s all I can think of for now but I know there are more.
You’ve got a wonderful critical and absurdist sense of humor with the way that you use sampled audio material from TV and radio. One of my most favorite performances of yours that I’ve seen is the one you did under the moniker of Aggressive Investment at Apartment Music 19. What do you like about using found material?
Aggressive Investments happened because I had just gotten a job doing transcription for mostly financial industry clients, and was suddenly dumped into all this bizarre jargon I had never heard before. I usually think of something first and then go and find the audio later, thank you sketchy YouTube-to-mp3 websites that have probably given all my computers viruses over the years. But of course, like most people who are into this stuff, I’ve come across a lot of strange cassette tapes over the years. I enjoy improvising along with the cadence of speech and emotional state/volume of a person talking. I regret some of the things I’ve sampled in the past, because I feel like it was insensitive or exploitative ("gangstalking" channels on YouTube, etc.) and my running joke obsession with Alex Jones because, well...we all know what’s happened with Alex Jones.
I also really enjoy shortwave radio and have a small rig to pick up signals from CB and different stations, found a lot of great cult/religious stuff that way, also strange to me pop music from around the world of course.
Aggressive Investment at Apartment Music #19, September 14, 2013
You get some really cool, heavy sounds from your gear. What kind of equipment and software have you been using to create your music and artwork? Can you share some background about your circuit and data bending/modifications?
I learned how to circuit bend when I was about 23 and was immediately in love. I saw it as a way to get sounds I thought only synthesizers I would never be able to afford in my life could make, and also to demystify my own gear so that I could fix things when they went wrong, or make them functionally wrong if they were boring. Toys, of course, are full of mysteries.
I don’t do much out-and-out circuit bending these days. My last hardware project was adding a bunch of arcade buttons to glitch points on a Casio PT-100.
I modify toy arcades, and have been unsuccessfully trying to build my own cabinet that will only play the worst bootleg games I can find.
Lucy Bonk at Apartment Music #10, May 28, 2011
Lucy Bonk at AR179, February 6, 2018
Databending/datamoshing/controlled data corruption has been an interest for a while. I started out just using Notepad and Audacity and importing image or music or program files incorrectly to see what they puked out. Basically a computer doing the best it can when being asked to do something it isn’t supposed to, i.e "open this text file as a .wav". Datamoshing is, in short, just removing certain types of frames from video, creating the effect you’d get from a bad digital antenna connection.
I know it’s uncool but currently I am very into video games on several levels. I can’t play with anything without wanting to get inside the guts, so when I discovered rom corruption, which is basically taking the data of a video game and mashing it all up via rearranging bytes, abusing cheat codes, replacing values with a hex editor to get amazing visual AND audio artifact, it became what I do the most and is pretty much an obsession. I use a program called Vinesauce and another one called Real Time Corruptor, a hex editor called Cygnus, and a pixel editor called YY-CHR. It doesn’t sound exciting but I recommend it to literally everyone.
(A link to a YouTube channel with three great pieces of rom corruption)
(A link to the YouTube channel with some music and video along with a weird fake anti-reading PSA that Lucy made in collaboration with a bunch of her internet pals and coworkers.)
hover your mouse over the slideshow below to activate controls for Pause, Back, Forward, and Play
click the Play button in the video below and be sure that your sound is turned up
A link to some of Lucy’s songs/pieces on Soundcloud
I really like how your work moves around from the circuit bending to all out percussion with pots and pans—the electric to the acoustic of sorts. What is/was your inspiration for in both of those areas?
Ah, I almost NEVER use acoustic instruments any more, but someone gave me a giant mixing bowl that sounded like a gong, and from there I hunted down a bunch of other bowls for different sounds. I then started building stuff like a xylophone made of water-filled contact mic’d mason jars and various glass bottles, etc.
Lucy Bonk at There Must Be Something in the Water, July 23, 2011
Derek Prommasit and Lucy Bonk at Laboratory Music #5, March 3, 2012
Do you have any pets?
I have four cats (two indoor, two outdoor) and an Eastern Gray Squirrel.
And now for the question that a colleague of mine used to wrap up every interview with:
What is your favorite Pepperidge Farm cookie?
Uh, all of them? I haven’t ever really met a cookie I didn’t like. If I gotta pick, it’s these toffee and chocolate chip ones I am about to smash. They don’t have a goofy name like most PF cookies. Did they stop doing that or did they just shaft this cookie for no reason? Excuse me, I need to go write a letter to the company.
Editor's Note: below are additional media files from various shows and compilations I have produced.
Lucy Bonk at Apartment Music 18, January 19, 2013
Lucy at Apartment Music #25, June 22, 2014
While I had been working with Hal on the Girls on Fire archive project and putting together some new pieces/songs, I was especially looking forward to performing live with other sound artists. When Hal emailed a bunch of us out of town Electronic Cottage members with an invitation to perform at the next Apartment Music shows as part of his 61st birthday celebration, I jumped at the chance. I am a big fan of the Apartment Music series and have very much enjoyed the last two, Apartment Music 30 and AM31.
For me, the Apartment Music shows continue the legacy in Western music, art and intellectual activity of the salon gatherings in a patron, supporter or fellow artist’s home that began in the 18th Century and continues on to this day. The Hal McGee-organized Apartment Music shows are scheduled during weekend afternoons in his living room in Gainesville, FL.
The space allows for the beautiful Florida sunshine to stream through and for the space to be open to deep listening, openness and engagement.
I remember reading an interview with Diamanda Galás and how she mentioned that she wanted to cry when she heard tapes of her live shows in the California punk clubs of the late ‘70’s because the breathing room and silence in her pieces were gone as the audiences wouldn’t stop talking during her performances and she had to scream over them non-stop.
The Apartment Music shows let that breathing room and space back in. Like with many of Allan Kaprow’s happenings and in the true punk spirit, the performers and the audience are one and the same. We are surrounded by Hal’s “Merzbau in Gainesville” walls adorned by his cool splatter paintings, received postal art, posters for Eraserhead, Twin Peaks and Burroughs: The Movie. And then there are the shelves upon shelves of cassette tapes from the golden era of the art cassette music making; a truly amazing, priceless archive and library. All of this lends an almost spiritual feeling to the room. It is we, who perform now, who are carrying forth the Word and lifting the spirit with sound; be it called electronic music, noise or spontaneous improvised music. All part of the One Big Note.
Like the Happenings in the ‘60’s and ‘70’s, there is a script or conceptual framework of sorts for the shows/events that Hal refers to as “stipulations”. These reasonable and logical guidelines help to ensure good feeling, respect and the best possible realization of the performances.
Keep equipment set-ups minimal, 10 minute sets and no high volume levels that would disturb next door neighbors. No drugs or alcohol. (The old straight edge punk in me really appreciated this stipulation.) Some participants like to joke about these rules but we all respect and understand that they are necessary part of the success and the continued future of these shows.
There are lots of delicious snacks and Hal’s excellent coffee.
Everyone is friendly and generous. In addition to sharing equipment cables to fellow performers when necessary, everyone brought self-made gifts for all. I came home with a load of wonderful zines, drawings, CDs and tapes as well as a Florida Noise sticker that I promptly put up on the wall in my office.
Aimee Naworal wrote a cool article about her art & literature haul at AM33
Another feature of the performances, especially during the set up times, is what I call (effect) Pedal Porn. During Fiver's Stereo/Jay Peele’s set up for Apartment Music 32, another fellow performer, Shelby Radcliffe directed my attention to Jay’s Moog Moogerfooger. I got so caught up in admiring it, I started touching it while Jay was trying to set up. He graciously accepted my apology. During Penny Grune-Fae’s set up for Apartment 33, I noticed that she was using a Caline Crazy Cacti overdrive unit. Penny says that she likes it. I have heard blues guitar players use that effects pedal/box so it is interesting that prepared guitar players do as well. Many of us use cassette players or digital dictaphones as sound sources as well as toys, household hardware and other found objects. It is like a multi-dimensional pop art assemblage.
Apartment Music 32
Saturday’s Apartment Music 32 big roster kicks off with Unfade, a duo comprised of Rachel Kinbar and Jonas Van den Bossche. Mic’d found objects, cassette recorders and voice filtered along with effected guitar. Weather and traffic sounds give way to taped voices and guitar crunch waves. Jonas applies a giant nail to the guitar grinding down on the strings with it. Not quite nine inches but certainly long enough to do some damage to your skull, thank you very much. Rachel plays a mic’d balloon and intones “We shed our skins, we become ourselves.” I agree.
photos of Unfade by Jen Sandwich
Most of us perform under various monikers. Today Trevor L. is performing as Lumen K. Deep layers sedimentary sounds and amplified volcanic burblings in the background as Lumen powerfully sings in a gospelized voice of a true story involving his parents when they were young and encountered a Zodiac Killer type entity and lived to tell their kids about it later. Very chilling.
Jay Peele/Fiver's Stereo continues the pulses—this time they are the sounds of breath and heartbeats with keyboards and effects like the Moogerfooger Analog Delay.
The pulse is put on pause for the screening of two of my videos
from the mid-‘80’s.
And then onto Jiblit Dupree’s (Danny McGuire) set of dark humor and confessional garage punk with a vintage Silvertone guitar and Epiphone amp. There had been rumors of a Dusty Twang reunion but alas, they remained rumors. Jiblit took requests and played a bitchin’ version of Black Flag’s arrangement of “Louie, Louie.” His guitar solo put Greg Ginn to shame.
Later on that day, he and I, inspired by Hal’s cover of the George Jones classic, “He Stopped Loving Her Today”, jammed on acoustic and toy guitars, relaxed and sang our hearts out before taking a wonderful, keepsake FTW photo together.
And speaking of photos, Jen Sandwich was in attendance at Apartment 32, translating the frequencies and performances into trippy digital photography. Here is a link to Jen's Flickr album consisting of 53 photos from Apartment Music 32.
Following Jiblit, Shelby Radcliffe, introduces her set about the healing and meditative properties of what some call noise. John Cage would have appreciated this. Her set ably does invokes a relaxed, inward focused state of mind with a number of folks closing their eyes and gently bopping their heads to her synth and effects waves.
The next performer, Ironing (Andrew Chadwick) turns the beat around with mad scratching skills. He plays records on top of records at all kinds of crazy speeds and looped phrases and beats. He even plays with a portable turntable on top of his head. The best use of vinyl that I’ve seen in a long time.
photos of Ironing by Jen Sandwich
The next performer, solid, affable, The Glyph (Aaron Abrams), followed with a Danelectro Free Speech talkbox and Game Boy type handheld game consoles. Distorted, abstracted 8-bit melodies and the Glyph’s facial expressions made for a fun time.
photos of The Glyph by Sandwich
Then Girls on Fire did our first performance since 1983. Needless to say I was very nervous but everyone was supportive and the set was well received.
Girls On Fire performance photographed by Jen Sandwich
To close out Apartment Music 32, the mighty Canned Ham (A.J. Herring, Hal and Mark McGee) gave us the sounds of great organic clatter with toy piano, melodica, talking drum, washboard, pink two string toy guitar and declamations like “We’re so representational.” A great ending to a great afternoon.
Canned Ham photos by Sandwich
Apartment Music 33
The next day, we got one of those famous Florida afternoon showers and a different vibe at the Apartment Music 33. Anchored and floating in space. Kind of psychedelic.
Dylan Houser begins the show with Sony ICD-PX 470 recorders, synth and Behringer Ultra Metal pedals. Words and phrases arc off into heavy sound waves. The synth riff sounds like the march to the ocean for a primordial return. Talented multi-instrumentalist, Dylan can create beautiful, awesome music with anything he touches.
Penny Grune-Fae creates waves of infinity. Prepared guitar, toys and vibrators as sounds triggers on the guitar strings. She uses the pickup on her guitar to amplify the sounds emanating from a small cassette. Her piece is incandescence in sound. She brought homemade cake made by her sister and chocolate “bark” from the health food store where she works. Her mother is kind enough to include paper bowls and napkins along with the cake. Penny quotes her mother as saying “I love your noise friends.” I think she means it!
The day before at AM 32, I felt like I performed the Girls on Fire set like Mick Jagger presenting to the board of directors the fiscal year audited financial statements with prankster party sounds effect bombs going off. Today, I’m seated, relaxed and am channeling the Dada muses. I get through my entire post-Coltrane/Residents’ version of My Favorite Things.
DJ Hollow Life (Joe Billingsley) follows with Filtered beats and Furby sound triggers. I have memories of news stories during the Furby craze that they were banned in some CIA and military bases/locations because of a recording circuit board in the toy.
Up next is the garrulous Aimee and Adam Naworal of Tomokie’s Cup. Adam and Aimee don Mexican wrestler masks for their performance. The drone of the Adam’s electric bagpipe and the reverberated percussive intonations of the wooden sound sculpture made from door-stops and other hardware (assembled by Penny) that Aimee brings forth make for a nicely textured and chilled out set.
Elsie Shiro changes up the vibe with manipulated tapes, miked drum lid and reverb laden music boxes. Repeated phases like I’m right here” and “Oh no” are slowed down and repeated with screeching rewind. Repetition and memory. Some memories are not necessarily good. Innocence lost. Very intense.
Apartment Music 33 ends with a live in-person real time audio assemblage by Hal McGee. Random playbacks on the ICD-PX 470 digital recorders, Korg Monotron Delay and mixing/affects. GOF snippets from AM 32 back in the mix. Hal’s beautiful and thought-provoking poetic cut-ups. Philosophical questions that would stump Bertrand Russell. Do you believe in noise? Do you belong to silence? And wise advice to keep the chaos in the noise where it belongs. Then he quotes fellow ECer Don Campau, “Folk Music is whatever the folks are playing.” Apartment Music 32 and 33 are living proof. Right on.
The Re-Discovery and Resurrection of Girls on Fire
It’s been seven months almost to the day since I received the first email of inquiry and re-introduction from the peerless and fearless artist and intrepid Electronic Cottage editor, Hal McGee.
Hundreds of emails, questions and answers, photos, fanzines, flyers, 45’s, unearthed cassette tapes, books, cd’s, chicken pot pies and Big Macs (hold the cellulose milk shake, please) later, we now have a site/project that is an organism/artwork of its own.
Like two composers working on a single score, Hal and I, to paraphrase John Cage from “A Composer’s Confessions”, experienced the pleasure of continual discovery; undiminished because the possibilities were/are endless.
The blurring of life and art was our inspiration. From an August 11 email from Hal, “When I do research on a subject I immerse myself in as many words, sights, sounds, tastes and smells associated with the subject matter as possible. No joke. It’s the way my art is too. Immersion.” He wasn’t kidding! Along the way we deeply grooved on Erik Satie, William Burroughs, Vivienne Dick, The Contortions, Julee Cruise’s time in the B-52’s and of course, Allan Kaprow.
A true collaboration, embedded in the site/project is all of Hal’s numerous, contributive hyperlinks which further edify and add to a story of US history and culture as told through the journey of Girls on Fire. In the seven sections, from the recession and N-R-Gee (Crises Blues) of a ‘70’s teenage punk girl to the dawn of the Reagan ‘80’s prog-rock/post-punk of DC’s ultra Rip It Up and Start Again Pigpens, Psychodrama, to the discovery and safe packaging and delivery to Gainesville, Florida of a tape of Early Rarities featuring a song destined after 35 years to amazingly get played at least once on the radio, "I’m in Love and on KW", immersion and discovery were our words to live by.
With the five sections in one known as
the Girls on Fire Cassettes,
(from the golden age of cassette music, 1983-1985)
Hal, inventively, came up with cool ways to illustrate the time and place of those songs
—such as using Google Map photos to find the still-existent laundromat of “I Wash and Dry My Clothes”,
from I Think About Jackson Pollock
and the site that sells mugs and t-shirts emblazoned with the slogan “Guns Don’t Kill People, Rotten Bananas Do” to illustrate the song, “Rotten Bananas” from In My Blood.
Thanks to Hal, I got back in touch with my ex-husband and cleared out a whole lot of old cobwebs with the Your Mom Too section.
Then we connected it all with my ‘80’s performance/cut up music videos collected in two compilations, Freud’s Snack Bar and Total Eclipse of the Sun.
It’s great to have all this audio and video work up on-line and available for streaming and downloading. The old is new again.
Along the way, it has been wonderful to renew contact and friendships with fellow travelers from the ‘80’s cassette days like Evan Cantor and Little Fyodor of Walls of Genius and Richard “Rick” Franecki of Vocokesh. I also want to thank
Al Margolis, Robin James, and Jerry Kranitz as well for all their contributions and support to this project. It has also been wonderful to meet and be inspired by the work of new listeners and supporters through the Electronic Cottage site. The sense of community that has truly transcended time and space is so life affirming and reminds me once again the positive power of music and art.
What’s next? As I mentioned to Hal in one of my emails during this process, for the past year I had felt something had been missing in my life but couldn’t quite put my finger on it.
Right from the beginning of our work on the GOF site, I began to get the “itch” again to make sound pieces/songs. I had been “woodshedding” since 2017 or so by listening to and reading the essays/interviews of John Cage and Karlheinz Stockhausen.
My first return to audio was in June 2018 with a brief re-working of John Cage’s “Mesostic 2” that I recorded off the fly with my iPhone. It was a m4a file.
I sent it off to Hal and his response was very encouraging, patient and helpful with audio tips (record in WAV, not m4a) which is very Zen/Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji when I think about it now.
Since then I took his further advice and purchased one of those handy dandy ICD-PX470 digital recorders. The Girls on Fire loony tunes machine is fired up once again!
Stream and download Leslie's new Girls On Fire song, "Purple Tooth".
After a break of over 35 years, Girls on Fire is excited to be traveling to Gainesville, Florida and performing at the upcoming Apartment Music 32 and 33 shows (January 12-13, 2019). I very much look forward to meeting and experiencing in-person the music of the great Floridian ECers.
"Florida" from Life is Too Funny — I Think I’ll $hoot Myself (1984)
To paraphrase John Cage, this time from his preface to his 1959 opus, Indeterminacy, “Then I said that I did not see that we were going to a goal, but that we were living in process, and that process is eternal.”
Editor's Note: Here are Leslie's notes on the song "Florida":
My grandparents, Grandma Sylvia and my Grandpa Louie (my father's parents) moved down to St. Pete from Washington DC circa 1970. I was very close to them and have a lot of good memories of both of them. To this day, I still remember advice that both of them gave to me when I was a child and an adolescent. When I was 11 and 12, I spent both of those summers with them in St. Pete. I fished, played chess and read library books with Grandpa Louie and Grandma Sylvia taught me America style cooking. My grandparents were hardcore bridge players and would take me with them to their games. All kinds of people would be there playing bridge. I used to do small pencil sketches of their faces especially those of the younger hippie looking guys while sitting near my grandparents. I think that one of them noticed me sketching his face and kind of dug it. I think that I was supposed to be learning bridge but I could never get that interested in it. I have fond memories of those summers. When I first met John Hricko, he showed me photos of his two sisters who both lived in Tallahassee and how whenever he went there to visit, everyone played bridge so thereafter he and I would swap Florida stories. I did that song for him. As I recall he really enjoyed it.
Florida is a hot state
Florida, da, da is a long state
Florida is a hot state
Florida, da, da is a long state
Florida is a hot state
Florida is a long state
And Florida is very old to me
Florida is a hot state
Florida is a long state
And Florida is very old to me
Florida is a hot state
Florida is a long state
Florida is a hot state
Florida is a long state
And Florida is very old to me
Da, da, da, da
SF Air/SF Hair
This song is about seeing and trying to come to terms with the unexpected.
San Francisco was always known for being the big California city with clean air. Now, because of the Northern California wildfires, its air can sometimes be worse than the smog in Los Angeles. The realization of this change and its impact and how to communicate it vocally was inspired by Elvis Presley’s notorious “Desert Storm” speech of 1974. Elvis was in the midst of his divorce from Priscilla Presley and finishing up what would become his final residency in Las Vegas. There are recordings of his nine minute tirade against the gossip/movie/entertainment magazines for reporting/spreading rumors that he was “strung out on heroin.” During this melt down he claims that he has never been strung out on heroin and that the only thing that he has ever been strung out on was music. The audience is clapping and very supportive of him during this harangue. He goes on to say how dangerous these kinds of rumors/reports (fake news) are to his father, his band, his audience and his little daughter.
That is when I got to thinking about how his daughter, Lisa Marie Presley, is/was one of the Ramones’ biggest fans. She was close friends with Johnny Ramone and helped pay for the statue of him at his gravesite in Hollywood. Johnny, who was everyone else’s nightmare (the subject of “The KKK Took My Baby Away”), was the light of Lisa Marie’s life. I think that there is a Buddhist moral in there somewhere but moving right along….
Editor's Note: These are the first new Girls On Fire recordings since 1985!
Thanks for the Feedback
Bringing back the autobiographical elements along with real potty talk and some important, helpful public health information, the lyrics speak for themselves:
Cheap imitation furniture
Anthill off the freeway
Nice white ladies
With asses made of sandpaper
Sadly and quickly
Wore away the toilet seat
Go glasses away
It is broken
Fuck this dumb shit
It turns out
You can’t get scabies
From sitting on
A toilet seat
Last Sunday, there was a reunion of Girls on Fire and Walls of Genius. It had been a little over 30 years since Little Fyodor along with Evan Cantor showed up on my doorstep in San Francisco’s Mission district. This time Little Fyodor and I re-united at the Mission Chinese Food Restaurant on NYC’s Lower East Side. The years evaporated away as we enjoyed the General Tso whiskey sours, the Drunken Fish and other culinary delights along with the delightful company of Little Fyodor’s better half, Babushka, friends JD and Amanda as well as my bff, Laura. To commemorate this joyous occasion, Laura pulled out the handy Captain Beefheart Trout Mask Replica iPhone and snapped a couple of pics. A good time was had by all!
Hal and I have now come to a pivotal moment in the Girls on Fire story. By the time that I completed and released the cassette album Life is Too Funny — I Think I’ll $hoot Myself in early 1984 I was no longer the teen art punk who went searching for the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow called San Francisco. I was about to be 21 and heard the call of other muses. Or were they really sirens?
While working on Life is Too Funny— I Think I’ll $hoot Myself, I was reading the book Happenings, An Illustrated Anthology written and edited by Michael Kirby, published in 1966. I believe that I found this book used at Aardvark Books on Church Street in SF. (It is still there).
The book contains the statements, scripts, and production details of 14 happenings by five artists: Allan Kaprow, Red Grooms, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Whitman, and Jim Dine.
Allan Kaprow, a student of John Cage, is credited with coining the term "happening". Frankly, I think that in addition to being one of the first in this grouping of artists to do happenings, he was also the one most genuinely engaged with making life into art, not just trying to sell some overpriced tchotchke.
A former painter, inspired by Jackson Pollock and his action paintings, Kaprow thought that the next step was to literally step out of painting and make lifelike art. The script for his 1961 Happening, A Spring Happening, is a “grocery list” of sounds and actions like “car horn starts constant sound”, “nervous kazoo sits in chair”, “person speaking babbling”, “Lights out in cubicles” and “cooking food.” Script directions like this were an inspiration for songs on Life is Too Funny, especially the last piece on the cassette album, "Camus’ Crashing, Burning and Eating Hungry Man TV Dinners".
The piece is an audio document of a performance that I did at Club Foot in SF in late 1983. I ate a TV dinner on stage while an audio tape loop of car crash played in the background. I was now edging into contemporary art practice/commerce as after this performance I began to slowly move away from making cassettes and into something else....
Other songs on the cassette album deal with topics of everyday life, and reflections on the impermanence of this earthly realm: "Hideous Pants", "Jessica Savitch" (celebrity death by car crash, a theme Singer explored over and over), "My Groovy Apartment", "My Ironing Board", and more.
Leslie and I have been working since mid-2018 on creating an archival resource site for her Girls On Fire project, based on interviews with her that I have conducted via email.
Released in early 1984, Life is Too Funny — I Think I’ll $hoot Myself was the fourth cassette that Leslie had created since she had moved from Washington, D.C. to San Francisco in October 1982. There would be one more Girls On Fire cassette, In My Blood (1985), and then no more. Leslie turned to other creative art forms, and you will find out more about that as the project develops.
Editor's Note: Leslie Singer's work in the 1980s incorporated elements of pop, conceptual and performance art; as well as doses of hardcore punk and lo-fi experimentalism; and even contained traces of progressive rock. Her music and films prefigured Harsh Noise and Riot Grrrls.
Dear EC Community Members,
Hal McGee and I have been working on uncovering and assembling an untold history of unheard music. This one is centered in the much storied Washington DC Punk / New Wave scene at the dawn of the Reagan 1980’s. While many fans of US punk and post-music have heard or read about the straight edge, hardcore punk scene that was based in DC during the very early ’80’s, not as many know about the art punk bands such as the one I was a founding member of in 1982, Psychodrama. Based out of the DC “bedroom communities” of Northern Virginia, Psychodrama (Brett Kerby, Rob Lippert and me) came into existence after playing together and meeting each other through the Throbbing Gristle-damaged From Far Away, Beauty?
Psychodrama’s influences were no wave, prog rock, electronic music, dada, surrealism and horror movies like the original Night of the Living Dead. Our lyrics were naive excursions into “transgression”, covering such topics as death, Armageddon, drivers ed movies and bitching about the DC music scene as was fitting for a band who consisted of mostly disaffected teenagers (I was 18 going on 19, Rob was 15.). Brett, in his mid ‘20’s, was a veteran of DC progressive rock group, Bazilisk.
Psychodrama performed/gigged at the now legendary DC clubs, d.c. space and The Chancery as well as one wacky show at CBGB’s in NYC. Audiences didn’t know exactly how to respond our blend of musics and theatrics but that didn’t stop us from releasing a cassette album in the spring of 1982, 300 Days of Sodom. Inspired by the burgeoning art cassette movement, we self-produced and distributed a 30 minute cassette of our tunes.
By the late summer of 1982, two of us in Psychodrama, (Brett and me) decided that it was time for a change. We drove across country and moved to San Francisco in October 1982. After two weeks, Brett moved back to Northern Virginia and I stayed on to put out a series of five cassette albums under such monikers as Girls on Fire, Sadistic Gossip, and Girls Who Hate Their Mothers.
Over the past several months, Hal and I have been putting together this story in words, pictures and music. We hope you enjoy it!
After high school and a year in the DC noise band, Psychodrama, I moved to SF in 1982.