1979. Davis, CA
the first band i was in was called amperage. we mainly played parties at the houses of friends
whose parents were out of town. i have memories of drunk people falling and knocking over
the PA speakers, spilling beers on us and our equipment, yelling that we sucked or that we
rocked, depending on the night.
we practiced mostly at my house. my parents were amazingly patient and tolerant about it.
we would play the same songs over and over, until my mom got them stuck in her head;
i would hear her around the house singing “cat scratch fever”, or “running with the devil”.
one day the guys showed up unexpected, with their guitars and a friend tagging along. i asked
them why they were there. they looked at each other, confused, then started laughing as if
they’d heard the funniest joke of their life. they were obviously very high. i didn’t want my mom
to see them, so i snuck them back into my room.
after a while we added a guitarist named danny who had a van. having a van to haul
equipment to gigs was the dream of every young band. we were living large.
danny’s mom made him a “stage outfit” of white and rose colored silk; big billowy sleeves and
pant legs. the rest of us dressed like slobs, while he looked like part of a circus high-wire act.