Me, Once

You believe this shit? Well, sure you do 'cause what do you care but, for me, finding these kinda freaks my ass a little.

This first one is a picture of me and some anonymous club girl at the Fetish in L.A. 'round about 1984, I think. I'm pretty sure this would've been the Berwin Complex location (it moved around a lot) and the photograph was taken by some guy, not sure who, interested in that culture or who thought that all us freakazoids was good camera fodder. True to his word, though, he showed up the next weekend with a print for anyone he'd shot the Saturday before.

Funny thing is, now that guy is me. Now I'm (occasionally) the guy in the club or the bar who takes pictures of the scenesters - from the outside looking in, sort of.

And this one, oh my. Did I mention I was in a band once? Yeah, me and my best friends from art school, David and Ed, started up this thing around '85 called... well, first it was the Negative Raccoon Effect. Sure - y'know, the NRE. And then we changed it to Simple. But the guy at the recording studio in Berkley where we made our demo tape thought that was a bad idea, what with the burgeoning popularity of Simple Minds, and we should avoid any confusion, etc... 

At the time I was really, really into Russian Constructivism and, in particular, the designs of Aleksandr Rodchenko and, in particular, this one piece, the cover of a book of poetry by Vladimir Mayakovsky called про зто (pronounced in english, Pro Eto). So we called ourselves that, which translated to... well, it was never quite clear. Different sources - different answers. It was either, "For This," or, "About This," or, "Because of This," or something ridiculously slight. For me, I have to say, it didn't much matter as I was just so in love with the graphic, it's source, and the knowledge that we had the coolest band logo ever - already built into the name. 

That's how I operated. I mean, yes, I was the singer and I wrote the words to the songs (such as they were) and a little of the music but my principle interest was in packaging our 'product' or 'image' or whatever. So I spent a whole lot more time on pictures and posters and flyers than I did on learning to play my guitar. Just looking at this blog, that can't come as much of a shock. 
Plus, I have an awful singing voice.

One of my aforementioned and still best friends, Edward Pollard, who played bass guitar in the band through it's many iterations (the story does go on into the nineties) has, in fact, written a novel based on his experiences during this slice of our lives. Exerpts from his adapted account can be found here.

And since were already here, and since I already have 'em scanned...

Here are some photostats of photographs taken by David Hermon, who shot many of the bands in the scene at that time and who was a fan of ours (and so shot for nothing).

Here's Ed.

This is David Bornstien, our guitar player and principle tune writer and someone I miss a whole lot.

And me again.

A collage layout based around another David Hermon photo...

One of my very early flyers...

more David Hermon shots...

And our press kit photo.

1 comment:

Ted said...

You had a press kit? Wow.

But do you still got your heart? That's the real question.