Monday, August 20, 2012

Tales of The South Side: Garage Band Aid - My 1960's Tour Bus was CTA

I was taller in real life . . . or, so I am told.
Smilin' Jack Merrins was two years ahead of me, at St. Augustine Minor Seminary* in Holland, Michigan where I spent the first three years of high school.  Like four of my classmates from Little Flower Grammar School Class of 1966, ( JC, SB, PO'C, & PM,), PFH thought of becoming an Augustinian Brother.  We were recruited by the late Father Dudley Day O.S.A.
I improved my smoking habits, participated in athletics with gusto, completely avoided any familiarity with chemistry, physics. math and the lesser sciences and learned Latin, Spanish, Literature, History, Government,  as well as more chords on the guitar and how to sing into a microphone. We had a band. In fact, we had many bands.  We had many bands in order to use up the few minutes of the day where mortal sin might become an issue.  We were by circumstance and indoctrination celibate.

Smilin' Jack Merrin was from St. Louis, Mo, where he fronted a band call Le Clades Blades - an eight piece rhythm and blues rock band of guitar, bass, Farfesa organ, drum kit and brass & reed. Smilin Jack vocalized.
Here at St. Augustine's -Smilin Jack's ax was Sax and Vox.  I played guitar, Lurch Palauskas -the Lithuanian Lover -banged keyboard and Brian "Bing" Bell hit the skins and did back-up vocals.

We covered these hits -

1. "Mama Get Your Hammer (There's a Fly on Baby's Head)," by the Bobby Peterson Quintet.
2. "When There's Tears in the Eyes of a Potato," by the Hoosier Hot Shots.
3. "I Like Bananas Because They Have No Bones," by the Hoosier Hot Shots.
4. "She Was Bitten on the Udder by an Adder," by Homer & Jethro.
5. "A Bowl of Chop Suey and You-ey," by Sam Robbins & His Hotel McAlpin Orchestra.
6. "I've Got Tears in My Ears From Lying on My Back in Bed While I Cry Over You," by Homer & Jethro.
7. "How Could You Believe Me When I Said I Loved You When You Know I've Been A Liar All My Life," by Fred Astaire and Jane Powell.
8. "I'd Rather Have a Bottle in Front of Me (Than a Frontal Lobotomy)," by Randy Hanzlick, M.D. 

At no time did we violate ASCAP or BMI regulations

(Dr. Demento says Hanzlick is--or was, as of 1980--a real internist in Atlanta, who writes songs for a hobby). 

*“I got a great education here,” said Edd Boyd of the class of 1963, one of the 60 alumni at the first overall reunion of the St. Augustine Seminary, a Catholic high school from 1949-1977 on what is now Shore Acres Park in Laketown Township. “I enjoyed the four years I spent here. It was rather idyllic.” . . . The property was originally the home of Dorr Felt, the inventor of the first adding machines. The Augustinians bought the property in 1949.
The order sold the property to the state in the late 1970s and the buildings were converted into a prison. Laketown Township bought the mansion and surrounding land in the 1990s and the prison was leveled. The mansion is being restored to the Felt-family era and the grounds around it are now a park with a disc golf course, trails and access to a beach on Lake Michigan.

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