Band Soap Operas: Tales of My Old Originals Band…

I’m going to briefly put the continuing ridiculous adventures of my Cincinnati rock cover band on hold for a second to rewind band life a bit. My roots in music go back as far as I want to remember, starting with high school band from grades 7-12 (band geek the whole nine). Now I play with a rock cover band. But one year-long episode in my life I don’t mention very much was when I was in an original Cincinnati funk-rock band, of all things, while a senior in college.

I saw the old band is reuniting after several years (without me, naturally) and the songs they have up on MySpace are actually the ones I recorded with them several years ago. You can hear me playing guitar, piano and trombone.

That’s me on the left, playing
guitar while slightly out of focus

That year playing originals was a weird experience, with some odd stories to be told. I was in college at the time and was too young to really know what I was doing, truth be told. The other dudes were all in their mid- to late-20s. Some of them were married with kids and had been like 10 bands to that point. And then here I was, this babyfaced “college boy” who didn’t even have a car. I still remember that we would play these Thursday night shows in rinkydink smoke-filled bars, starting our set at like 12:30 a.m. I would do homework in the corner with a textbook open while the other band guys talked with people or drank.

One thing that was pretty cool is that our first shows together as a quintet were through a Battle of the Bands in Cincinnati at a place called Bogarts. A lot of incredible bands played that stage and signed their names on the wall in the back. Before our last show at Bogarts, I scanned over the wall and found the signature of Kurt Cobain, whose music pretty much got me through adolescence, as cliche as that is. A lot of those memories have escaped me, but seeing Cobain’s name before I got onstage never did, and I am thankful for that.

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