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It Happened to Me Music

The Pink Wig Gig

I thought I’d post some more “crazy hair from my past” photos.


Before I was an accordion player, I played synths. I owned a number of synths and samplers through my years at Crazy Go Nuts University.

During my time there — September 1987 through December 1994, guitar

players were worshipped and synth guys were viewed with some suspicion.

It was a time bookended by the jingle-jangle of U2 and R.E.M. at the

beginning and grunge at the end. Being a small college town like

Athens, Georgia or Olympia, Washington, the guitar was also king in

Kingston, Ontario. Those damned plank-spankers, as I used to refer to

guitarists, got all the attention, love and respect, leaving we few

keyboard players — namely myself, my buddy Karl Mohr and

“Craigertronic” — in our own quiet musical backwater. My friend Sarah

English once wrote in a music review in the Queen’s Journal that she could never trust a band with a keyboard player in it.

This ghettoization made us synth players a closely-knit bunch, and we

often gigged together, even after graduation. For the April 1999 launch

party of his mother Merilyn Simond’s book, The Lion in the Room Next

Door, Karl invited me and another Kingston-based synth guy, Steve

Skratt, to be the entertainment. Along with our friend Chantal from a

gazillion Kingston bands as well as Rachel Smith and Krista “Lederhosen

Lucil” Muir, we formed the improv synth trip-hop band Lion.

On a lark, we decided that we’d all wear wigs for the gig. I went for

the “anime hair” look, but since Rachel had already claimed the blue

one, I had to take the pink. It didn’t look too bad…

Photo: Joey deVilla in pink wig.

The wig. Attention Mom, Dad and parents-in-law: I promise not to wear this at the wedding…much.

Photo: Keyboard section of the band 'Lion', featuring Karl Mohr, Steve Skratt and Joey deVilla.

Kraftwerk ain’t got nuthin’ on us!

From left to right: Karl Mohr (who’s switched from wig to fez), Steve

Skratt, me and Rachel Smith. I’m playing my Ensoniq EPS Sampler and

Roland MC-303 GrooveBox.

Photo: Keyboard section of the band 'Lion', featuring Karl Mohr, Steve Skratt and Joey deVilla.

Not all the instruments were synthetic…but our hair was!

Photo: Keyboard section of the band 'Lion', featuring Karl Mohr, Steve Skratt and Joey deVilla.

In the background: Rachel, Chantal and Krista, who also

played violin at the gig. Krista is now the Montreal indie pop darling

known to the world as Lederhosen Lucil.

Photo: Keyboard section of the band 'Lion', featuring Karl Mohr, Steve Skratt and Joey deVilla.

“More major sevenths! MORE MAJOR SEVENTHS!”

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