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…
The wig. Attention Mom, Dad and parents-in-law: I promise not to wear this at the wedding…much.
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.
Not all the instruments were synthetic…but our hair was!
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.
“More major sevenths! MORE MAJOR SEVENTHS!”