Wild Blue Yonder-Instant Gratification LP 1978
Judy Bixler-Vocals, Electric Piano, Bill Bixler-Vocals,
Saxophone and keyboard, Jim Bixler-Vocals, Guitar and
Saxophone, Phil Wimer-Guitar, vocals and piano, Tad
Wadhams-Bass and vocals, Jeff Bowman-Vibes and
Percussion, Alan Carlson-Drums.
The Wild Blue Yonder are IMO the Spiritual Godparents of the
Fresno RocknRoll scene. They were so kind to me and many
other Fresno musicians over the years, giving us a place to
play and the support to hone our craft in their groovy nightclub
of the same name.
Going all the way back to the 60s, some of these great players
are still gigging to this day. They just played at the Fulton 55 a
few weeks ago and were just as good as I remembered them
from back in the day.
"Instant Gratification" is my fave off this album and it's a song
that Judy Bixler sang lead vocals on. She hits those blue notes
in such a masterful way. I remember seeing her singing
Standards at the grand piano in the club in the 80s.
Jim Hampton-Ripe for Picking 7inch 1981
Another Fresno icon, Jim Hampton also goes back to
the 60s and is still playing gigs and played with Snail
at the Fulton 55 on June 2nd. This song is the B-Side
of his 1981 7inch and it's called "Ripe for Picking".
Guitar picking that is, as Jim has been a great guitarist
with loads of great licks in many different styles. He
taught guitar lessons for many years and I took a few
from him in the 80s. He taught me how to play Booker
T's Green Onions and we played a punk version of it
for several years. There's great lyrics in this song like:
"San Joaquin I always thought to make it here was
fine, but all I ever hoped for was a sign" captures the
feel of what it's like to live here in the SJV.
Avenue-Livin' Lovin' Doll
Valley Grown Compilation LP 1978
Avenue was a happening band in 1978 and had a
choice, first song, side one on the KYNO Valley
Grown compilation. They were the best band on
the record and I happened to see them play at one
of their rehearsals down in Fowler because Robert
Lang, who joined the band as second guitarist
invited me. It was a fun party and they had the
coolest Marshall stacks and hard rock licks.
There's a great Myspace page over here with lots
of history on Avenue and a bunch of their songs:
Not so Quiet on the Western Front Comp LP 1982
By 1982 punk had hit the Valley real hard, right
between the eyes and we had a veritable bumper
crop of garage-punk bands that could hold their
own with the best of them. The Frigidettes were an
all-girl band with socially-aware lyrics with political
overtones. The punk bands had a focus some of
the other bands lacked. "Turmoil" is as anti-war as
you can get and Lead singer Linda Abrahamian's
literate approach was a welcome quality and
showed they actually had something pertinent to
The Frigidettes were selected for the super-cool
Maximum Rocknroll compilation in 1982, Not so
Quiet on the Western Front, still in print on Jello
Biafra's Alternative Tentacles:
The Clams-Big Bug 4-song 12inch 1982
Russ Reed - Bass, Keyboards, Vocals, Tony Negrete - Lead
Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Jim Carter - Guitar, Keyboards,
Vocals, George Rotalo - Lead Vocal, Saxophone, Jeff Wilkins
- Drums, Vocals, Twynes.
The first I heard of these guys was when Roy Nichols at
Tower Records Fresno in the late 70s was going on about a
band that played covers of his beloved Prog-rock bands.
They were called "Orchid" and several of the Tower crew
went to see them and raved about them. Shortly thereafter
they changed their name to The Clams and became one of
the most popular bands in Fresno. They gigged a lot at the
Wild Blue Yonder nightclub and had a big following.
This 4-song 12inch was Recorded at Trac Records by Stan
"CUT 1!" Anderson.
Trac Records was a recording studio on Maple avenue just
north of Tulare and south of Belmont.
T-N-T-Love isn't Free
Valley Grown Compilation LP 1978
James Whetstone-Vocals, Robert Diebert- Guitar, Danny
Z-Guitar & Synthesizers, David Starkey-Bass, Gary
The band initially gained success from their track "Love
Isn't Free" which appeared on the "Valley Grown" album,
which was put out by local radio station KYNO FM. The
track was played constantly on the station, and even
used as a commercial for the album.
The Miss Alans-Mata Hari's Butt 7inch 1993
Scott Oliver-Vocals, Manny Diez-Guitar, Jay Fung-Bass,
Like a bad-ass version of Fripp meets Eno, Miss Alans
straddled the netherworlds of Art-rock and Grunge with
wailing feedback through an AC30 by axe-man Manny
Diez and crying vocals by Scott Oliver in a way so
expressive as to throw the local scene in '93 on it's
head... Where were they coming from? What were they
singing about? I don't know but it was cool as hell as
evidenced by this clear vinyl 45 RPM gem. We shared a
rehearsal space with them back in the 80s and there
were lots of big parties and rocknroll fun had by all.
S.A.D. BOYZ-Shut up and Drink
Shredder Comp 7inch EP 1989
Steve "Mojo" Madrigal-vocals, John
Sargentini-guitar, Steve Garcia-guitar, Rick
Struhar-bass, Steve Daniels-drums
One of the coolest and baddest-assed bands to
erupt from the 80s Fresno HC Punk scene,the
SAD BOYZ came to prominence and popularity
through hard work and bristling talent. Led by
frontman Mojo, everyone felt the integrity of this
hardcore punk band. There was nothing
disengenuous about the SAD BOYZ. When they
sang "Shut up and drink" it had a fierce ring of
sincerity that was undeniable to the Fresno
punks. True street punks with a major Fresno
following they played many great shows in town
and out of town.
But, bad management, a search for a new singer, and the era of disco music fizzled the band's dreams.
Robert Diebert went on to found the heavy metal band Zion's Reign, and then the famous Led Zeppelin tribute band Houses Of The Holy. Both of which featured Danny Z
(http://www.facebook.com/daniel.mysterioso) on vocals, who now is also a songwriter and editor/writer for various web publications. Gary Mara (Gary O'Meara) now plays with
Herman Rarebell of Scorpions, among other projects. David Starkey currently plays with the Hollywood based band Death And Taxes.
Hi and welcome to Dale's Old Fresno Records, where I play some of my favorite records of Fresno bands and
musicians in my collection from the 1970s to the 1990s. firstname.lastname@example.org bio
Part 1 30MAY12
I know because Capitol Punishment also recorded there in '82. Stan Anderson was a senior gentleman who specialized in recording Square Dance songs which he actually
recorded and "cut" 7inch promo copies in the studio. He proudly showed me his cutting lathe that he used to cut 7inch Square Dance records right there in the studio. He
sure knocked it out of the park with this Clams 12inch. Crisp vocals and drums with sparkling guitars makes for a pleasurable listen so many years later.
The band's first headlining gig at Horse World in Clovis,CA resulted in over 3,000 fans
showing up; and an ensuing riot when the local sheriffs department tried to close it down.
The Fresno Bee's headline said "RIOT AT HORSEWORLD!". Most bands will kill to have
that publicity, but this did not portend well for TNT. Known for their quasi-Aerosmith sound
and backline of Marshall stacks, vintage guitars, and Ludwig Vistalite drums, the band
seemed destined for success. Bill Aucoin, of KISS fame, offered them a tour slot opening
for ANGEL and The GODZ.
What a kick to find Big Bug online! Jim Carter is my brother so of course I am a fan of the Clams. My favorite song on that record is Out West (by Jimmy
of course). There is a video of Jimmy singing a song at the Wild Blue on Youtube. Now if everyone who has a video of the Clams would post them on
Youtube it would be the best. FYI, Jim and his wife have an album on iTunes-Stephanie and the James. Thank you so much, Jan 16JUL12
Neanderthals - I Like Legos Lincoln Logs suck
One-sided Blue vinyl 7inch Ragin' Duck Records 1991
Phill Rhoads - Vocals and Guitar, Ben Medrano - Guitar
and vocals, Andy Witchez - Bass and vocals, Donnie
Marvin - Drums and vocals
"The Neanderthals started off as the singer, recording
goofy songs on a 4-track, playing all the instruments.
The songs got played on KFSR and requests and
inquiries came in. Phill recruited local help -- Donny on
drums, plus a guy who was one of the top bicyclists in
the world on guitar and a kid on bass who had just
watched his friend die in an auto accident and who had
suffered a spinal injury. I eventually became roommates
with that kid. The next time I saw the Neanderthals, they
were playing the local Club Fred. I couldn't get in; it was
packed. I stayed out front for hours and started hearing
familiar songs." from Myspace page
Groovy diagonal cut sleeve and primary colors make for
eye-popping design immortality by Tim Biskup.
Plaid Retina - Plaid Retina
:28 debut 12-song 7inch EP on Lookout! Records 1987.
"The history of Plaid Retina begins in 1984, in Visalia, a
small city in California Central Valley, when drummer
Don Hudgens joined metal band Oblivion, a high school
band established by Travis, Jeff Gilley, "Bryan T"
Thompson, Alarick Garcia and Mike Matthews. The crew
for that band also included Matt Morris and Jeff Beck. It
was at this time Hudgens and Matt Morris met up with
Kelly Casper, who was part of that scene at Redwood
Even though the band was not from Los Angeles, the
band managed to keep up with the underground scene
in Los Angeles (150 miles from Visalia), which was what
made them unique in their small-town local scene.
Heavy Metal's definition, however, was about to be
shattered by a plethora of different influences. The
advent of hardcore punk acts such as Minor Threat and
the Suicidal Tendencies, whose first album made a
huge impression of the metal scene, caused the
members of the band to splinter."
Maniax - Off to War
Maximum Rocknroll Not so Quiet on the Western Front
2-LP Compilation Alternative Tentacles 1982
Started in 1980 by the Mitchell twins, Gregg and Rob,
MANIAX caught the attention of Maximumrocknroll
radio/zine/record label after sending in their homemade
tapes. Even though they were recorded on just small
handheld recorders a lot of people liked the gritty sound
and their pure punk spirit.
Off to war
Off to war I'm gonna die
Off to war your gonna cry
Off to war in a rut
Off to war kick your butt
Off to war blood and gore
Off to war more and more
Off to war on the floor
Off to war out the door
This 42-band compilation is still in print and available on CD:
Supreme Love Gods - Fire
Colored vinyl 7inch Ragin' Records/Def American 1991
Eric Dansby, drummer for the Maniax went on to play
drums in the Supreme Love Gods. They were an
alternative rock group from Fresno, California, active
from 1990 to 1993. If I had records by the the other
bands Eric played in we could do a whole E.D. set.
Thomas Dew - vocals, Tommy Joy - guitar, keyboards,
Lance Carlos - bass, John Wilson - Multi-instrumentalist,
Eric Dansby - drums
Although this 7inch is one side Ragin' Records, the
other side Def American, SLG signed to Columbia/Sony
Music in 1991 and released an EP in England entitled
Righteous on One Little Indian later that year. Early the
next year, the group was dropped from Columbia, and
bassist Lance Carlos left the group, to be replaced by
John Wilson. Their only full-length release was a
self-titled album, issued on Def American in 1992.
"Souled Out" was released as a single and hit No. 16 on
the U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart. The group
toured with Ned's Atomic Dustbin, 808 State, and Meat
Beat Manifesto in 1993. They began working on a new
album in 1993 but broke up while recording it.
|In 2008 Supreme Love Gods got together for a reunion show in their home town of Fresno, California. more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supreme_Love_Gods