This one goes out to Betsy and all the great bands from Providence, RI!!
Betsy- The Probers Mad At The World
Smash-Up- The Greenberry Woods Big Money Item
Give And Take- Throwback Suburbia Shot Glass Souvenir
Crime Scene- Kevin K The Best Of Kevin K - New York, New York
Tomorrow- Radio City Class of '77
Princess Warrior- Big Dipper Crashes On The Platinum Planet
If I Didn't Love You- Squeeze Argybargy
Flamingo- This Perfect Day Don't Smile
^Anywhere With You- Rubber Rodeo Anywhere With You
Cha Cha- Tinted Windows Tinted Windows
New Girl- The Fingers On The Radio
*I Wanna Be The Vice President- Delinquents It's Down To You
*Make It The Same- The Mundanes Make It The Same 7"
*You Don't Know Me- The Nads The Nads Ep
*Hyperactive- Hi-Beams Hyperactive
*Streamline Heart- The Schemers The Living Room: A Compilation
*Something Special- Big World The Living Room: A Compilation
*Dream Girl- The Threats The Living Room: A Compilation
*Can't Remember Her Name- The Detectives The Living Room: A Compilation
*Gone- Plan 9 Dealing With The Dead
*Mom- Neutral Nation It's A Bash
*(When I) Touch You There- Coat Of Arms Roust!
*My Blank Pages- Velvet Crush Teenage Symphonies To God
Hangin- Free Energy Love Sign
Children Of The Revolution- T-Rex The Very Best Of T-Rex
Drastic Change- Just Water The Riff
>Sweet Mary- Wadsworth Mansion Sweet Mary
Mr. Sad- The True Loves I Was Accident
Little Bit Frightening- The Wanderers Only Lovers Left Alive
The Untitled- Rash Of Stabbings Shell Shocked Ride
^Power Pop Peak:
*SacroSet: Providence Rock and Roll 1979-1994
>Power Pop Prototype: 1971
yellow cardboard boxes featuring the logo for Channel 6, a station in New Bedford, Mass that serves the Providence market. I think they were supposed to be in-car trash cans which is ironic because I have a vivid memory of a family car trip where beside me in the back seat my sister Sarah methodically tears a Channel 6 box apart, laughing maniacally as each yellow shred gets sucked out her open window. I remember laughing a little too, though she was making me pretty anxious. First, I knew my Dad was about to yell at us and I thought laughter would make me seem complicit. Second, it shocked me she was littering! I was very susceptible to all the anti-littering ads on TV. Woodsy the owl was admittedly lame but who could resist the Indian with the tear in his eye?
But I digress, Providence Channels 6, 10 and 12 were a part of my television upbringing. From an early age however I sensed an "otherness" about these stations. Not that I paid that much attention, but to my young eyes, newscasts on Boston TV were pretty slick affairs with anchors that seemed kind of like game show hosts. The news out of Providence was nowhere near as flashy and read by older, more serious people with Italian names that sounded hard to spell. Interestingly, Providence and Boston radio stations sounded the same to me. In fact, for my first few years in Duxbury, my favorite station was Providence's 92 PRO FM, which is still in the Top 40 format today. As I mentioned in an earlier post, my first concert was Aerosmith with Nils Lofgren at the Providence Civic Center on October 31, 1977. Thanks to the Celtics and Bruins' home games, Boston Garden couldn't hold a candle to the Civic Center when it came to rock concerts. One of my all-time favorite shows was the following year: Kiss at Providence Civic Center on February 2, 1978.
True to form, I insisted we leave three hours early saying- "we'll get a bite to eat near the club," ignorant to the fact that it was located in an Escher-like barren industrial hellscape. Jim and I drove around and around that night, finally seeing The Living Room lit up against a now pitch black backdrop, only to realize that we were on the WRONG SIDE of the freaking river! We contemplated swimming for it, but even in the dark that water seemed nasty. It sounded thick and syrupy, making me wonder if its inky depths were the inspiration for some of Providence writer HP Lovecraft's monsters like Cthulhu or Yog-Sothoth.
After Carlotta left Rash of Stabbings Bob Hymers took over lead vocals which in my opinion was a change for the better. It always seemed like the group was on the cusp of getting signed to a major label but nothing ever came of it. Part of the problem may be that from a marketing standpoint the name "Rash Of Stabbings" was too hard for the labels to get their heads around. The band tried switching to just "Rash" for a while but it didn't take and as near as I can tell they called it quits sometime in the early 90's.
As we were circling west Providence looking for the Living Room that night back in 1983, Jim and I talked about how nice it was to be seeing a show outside Boston. We had seen too many shows marred by the moshing, stage diving showboats of the Boston hardcore scene. These guys would often grab the microphone out of a singer's hand and scream along, usually getting the words wrong. I would always feel bad for the real singers, most of whom tried to take it in stride but were, like myself, probably thinking "get these douche bags off my stage!" The worst offender was already in Boston's most infamous hardcore band- how much stage time did this guy need?!? Anyway, it's all cool during Rash of Stabbings but when The Damned take the stage this same guy and about ten of his friends bum rush the stage. The Damned were good sports and despite all the "Boston Crew" douche baggery it was an amazing show.
p.s. Big thanks go out to the great Ed Slota for helping me out with some music for this show.
You can download this week's ALL KINDSA GIRLS below (right click and "Save Link As," if download stops you may need to pause and un-pause)