Last weekend, I had the opportunity to see The Trashwomen play their first show in 12 years at Burger Boogaloo in Mosswood Park. The set was fierce and amazing, and the crowd, which ranged in age from 10 to 55, was ecstatic to see finally see this band. It got me thinking about other bands like this. The forgotten bands of the bay area. These are bands that never became big national successes, but were revered in the bay area, and I would love to see a rousing comeback show by any of thee bands. This is also the final “Picks Six” you will see on Spinning Platters. I know there are a lot of fans of lists out there, however, and we will have a regular column coming your way in the very near future that I hope you like.
Full Moon Partisans
This band existed for only a very short time. And during those three or four years, it seemed like you always were only a few weeks away from a Full Moon Partisans dance party. They could have been huge. As they were fizzling out, like-minded bands like Gogol Bordello, Beirut, and Devotchka broke out, and I always wondered what could have happened if they stuck around for one more tour.
Skankin’ Pickle debut record was called Skafunkrastpunk. And that was exactly what they did. They were an interracial band that crossed the same genre boundaries that Fishbone did, only did it with just a touch of nerd. They put on an amazing, high energy live show. Then, in 1si996, they called it quits. For a few years, the various members of the band continued to play around town, keeping their chops warm. However, in 2007, guitarist and cofounder Lynette Knackstedt passed away. Lead singer / sax player Mike Park and trombonist Gerry Lindquist played a memorial show, doing Skankin’ Pickle songs for the last time ever with help from fellow Bay Area ska favorites Monkey. However, there is some hope for a future Pickle show. When Yo Gabba Gabba played the Fox Theater late last year, their musical guest was Mike Park. Instead of doing his folk music, as he has been doing lately, he staged a mini Skankin’ Pickle reunion with Lindquist and trombonist (yes, two trombone players) Lars Nylander on stage for a cover of Bad Manners’ “Feel Like Jumpin'”. So, maybe, just maybe, we actually have a shot at seeing Skankin’ Pickle do a full scale show once again.
Negative Trend were part of the late 70’s local punk scene. Their angular hardcore was a totally unique sound at the time, setting them apart from the the rest of the scene. Sadly, much like many of their peers, they only existed for a mere two years. Bassist Will Shatter and drummer Steve Pace went on to form Flipper, a band that was a huge influence on Nirvana, Black Flag, and The Melvins amongst others. Despite Shatters passing, the rest of the original line up: Steve DePace, Craig Gray, and Rozz Rezabeck are still alive and well. Maybe a few solid comeback shows could give this band the props they never received the first time around.
There were a lot of pop punk bands coming out of the East Bay in the early 90’s. So many that it was tough to weed through many of them. One of my personal favorites, however, was Tilt. Their songs were insanely catchy, and lyrics were equal parts hyper intelligent and relatable to the masses. Research shows that they “almost” reunited in 2011, but that didn’t happen because Pete Rypins broke his arm shortly before the gig, causing it to get canceled. Maybe, just maybe, they will finally play that gig.
The Count Five
Although when we think of the 1960’s rock scene, we usually think of the San Francisco Psychedelic scene that brought us The Grateful Dead, Moby Grape, and Jefferson Airplane. Few people realize before the Summer of Love, the city south of the bay, San Jose, gave us the bay’s first real rock hit. The Count Five’s “Psychotic Reaction” was a #5 hit on the Billboard Pop Charts, but the band never released anything of any major notoriety again. The broke up in 1969 with only one album under it’s belt. Although there are two members no longer with us, and my research really hasn’t been able to give me any word on the health of the other 3 members, it still would be kind of awesome to get to hear this song done live.
The Hi Fives
Much like Full Moon Partisans, The Hi Fives were a victim of being ahead of their time. They put out 3 records of delicious 60’s garage rock, complete with killer harmonies and they made sure to where suits whenever they played live. They stopped playing live in 1998, the same year The Hives released A.K.A.I.D.I.O.T. and the year before The White Stripes released their debut record. It’s a shame they missed the garage rock revival of the early aughts.
I can guarantee that I’m missing a favorite band of yours. Why don’t you post about a dearly departed Bay Area cult band in the comments that you’d like to see play again?