A wild tale of talent scouting, heedless auditioning and a weirdly happy ending that involves Iggy Pop and Ray Manzarek.
Articles by Binky Philips
After strutting around the stage, mocking the crowd, without warning or even a count-in, they launched/catapulted/tore into “I Feel Alright” by the Stooges. It wasn’t the beginning of a song, it was detonation! Their power, energy and volume made it breathtaking.
Store policy was to never refuse. We’d take five of anything to support local acts. Since I knew them, at least by sight, I took 10 copies of the Pollywog Stew EP from Adam Yauch and Mike Diamond.
I was invited to fly to London for an audition. With a mix of regret and excitement, I broke the news to the other Planets and, a few days later, carrying my Gibson Les Paul, boarded a plane at JFK en route to Heathrow.
When British punk broke out in all its anti-glory in the mid-1970s, only the Who and Small Faces were immune from purist punk rockers’ sulfurous disdain. It’s obvious why. Small Faces were punks. Punks with world-class chops and a singer, Steve Marriott, who may well have been the best rock voice Britain has ever produced.
1975: The first two Ramones to arrive were Johnny and Tommy, wearing their band uniform: motorcycle jackets, white T-shirts, jeans blown out at the knees, Chuck Taylor Cons.
“This is the PA?!?” blurted Tommy. Johnny wouldn’t even acknowledge my presence. He just snorted with undisguised disgust and stomped past me.
March 28, 1967: The guitar intro to “Substitute” began and then… BOOOOM! The bass and drums came thundering in. Only then did the curtain finally start to open.