Segarini: The Obscure Bob – Blasts from the Past

Thug BobI will assume many of you noticed a lack of new content here for the last 8 days. The reason was a frustratingly large amount of viruses, malware, and Dweeb driven shitbots that made posting anything dangerous until it was all found, quarantined, and/or deleted. I apologize for the lull, and have this to say about it….

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I hope there is a special hell for all the dimbulbs who write malware and viruses and cause so much juvenile, meaningless, malevolent grief in a world already full of it. In a perfect world, they would be caught and arrested, tried, and either imprisoned (stupid) or barred from EVER being allowed to use, own, or stare lovingly at a computer/tablet/laptop/smartphone or any other device that connects to the internet, for life. (not stupid).

CAREERBUILDER.COM CHIMPANZEE SUPER BOWL ADSInstead, here in our ever increasingly idiotic world (that I am convinced is being run by monkeys and the same braindead assholes who buy artistic successes built on savvy, hard work, and love, and then strip-mine every worthwhile, creative idea, person and dime out of it until it becomes a brutally raped, mediocre, husk…then move on to ruin more lives and suck the money and life out of their next target), they are usually tracked down and offered a high paying job with a corporation, the Government, or the Military. To all of you who are responsible for the devious, misguided, and hurtful, costly crap you thoughtlessly inflict on us, and all of those who not only let them get away with it but reward them, let me say this: I hope Honey Boo Boo’s mother sits naked on your face, crushes your larynx, and breaks your fucking neck.

That is what I hope.

Now then…

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Bob's BirthdayI am surprised at the amount of detritus I have produced during my life. Things that I have either forgotten over the years on purpose (“What was I thinking”) or just forgotten until someone reminds me of it (“I did what?”), keep popping up out of the blue. The strange thing is that there are some recordings and performances I know exist that I cannot find anywhere. Some of them I have been looking for, for over 4o years to no avail, yet other missing fragments of my ongoing quest to leave my footprints in the sand have become available through the oddest of circumstances.

For example…

Chris NowOn June 8th of this year I got a Facebook message from an old friend from Stockton California named Chris Nellman. Chris was brought into my circle of friends by one Melanie Bray, a bundle of energy who has the kind of madness generally reserved for artists, kittens, and Ritalin deprived 5 year olds. She was, and is, cute too. Being a dancer, she gravitated toward the local bands and that is how we came to meet, when I was in The Family Tree. Mel was a press agent and event planner before those jobs even existed. She was always introducing this person to that, tab A to slot B, these things to those people. If you knew Mel, you would eventually know everybody and everything Mel knew. That’s how it was.

Chris NellmanSo Mel and Chris were pals and remain so to this day. And because of that, though never close, Chris and I have stayed in touch. She messages me:

Hey Bob, my friend Eloy Lores, who owns Treasure Trove Antiques in Stockton sent me a message tonight.“Chris, I just found an old 45 rpm record. It’s on Quality Recording Service Stockton Ca label. It is stamped Audition Record. One side has “I’ll Try To Be Happy”, words and music by Bob Segarini, with The Eddie Lucchesi Orch. The flip side is “Susan”, words and music by Bob Segarini, with the Eddie Lucchesi Orch. I have to take it home and play it.”

Huh?

It takes me a minute to digest what I’m reading.

At first, I cannot, for the life of me, remember having ever done this at all. I do not recall having written a song called, “I’ll Try to be Happy”, and “Susan” didn’t ring a bell at first either. Eddie Lucchesi, on the other hand, well…that rang a bell.

Eddie Lucchesi TrioEddie Lucchesi had a band, sometimes a trio, and sometimes an orchestra, who played around the San Joaquin Valley frequently and were very popular. Locally, in Stockton, they were pretty much the go-to entertainment for dances, clubs, and parties, and could be found playing everywhere from Frat houses and Sorority mixers at the College, later, University of the Pacific, to Moose and Elks Lodges, and big clubs like The Rendezvous in downtown Stockton which was a converted movie theatre where Eddie’s group played every Saturday night. It was a surprise, then, to find the Eddie Lucchesi Trio playing Commodore Robert Field Stockton Junior High School’s 9th Grade Prom.

We were not worthy….

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Me at 3I had started writing songs in the 8th grade and was already on my third career path (tap dancer extraordinaire, then accordion virtuoso, now budding rock legend) at 13. During the next school year (the 9th Grade) I had sung an original song as punishment (!) in choir class for always asking the teacher (I forget her name) if we could learn songs by the Everly Brothers or Dion and the Belmonts or anything other than “Row Row Row Your Boat”. When I got wild applause for my rendition of my first composition, “I’m a Juvenile” (I was 13 years old, fer chrissakes) she got even more pissed off and I spent the remainder of the class reading ‘Faust’ in her office to the strains of my fellow inmates crushing “Row Row Row Your Fucking Boat” for the eleventybillionth time.

I didn’t care. They liked me. They really liked me.

Bob at 13aI took to spending part of my lunch breaks after that incident to warble a new song or a current hit on the radio from the second floor fire escape on the East wall of the Auditorium Building facing the picnic tabled lunch area. A little crowd would gather down below and no one threw a book at me or beat me up, so I considered that a success. And so it came to pass that I would be shoved onstage by my friends when the Eddie Lucchesi Trio played our Prom.

I don’t know if they did it because they thought I was good, or if they wanted to watch me wither and fail, but it didn’t matter…I was up there and I was going to sing. Eddie was gracious and amused, we decided what we would do ( I have no idea what we did), but I sang, and when the reaction was good, sang another. So this is what it feels like?

It was life altering.

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A couple of other tidbits of information have crawled out of the muddy and overcrowded basement of my brain since that June 8th message, but like those poor people’s homes on ‘Hoarders’ (which my brain surely resembles) I cannot find the info I am looking for, and I won’t have it until I hear this damn recording.

Which I still don’t have.

The good news is that I will have it soon.

Wilson WayThe other information that has surfaced isn’t much, but it helps. For one thing, I remember the place where we recorded it. It was on Wilson Way, a blue collar part of town and regarded as ‘seedy’ by some, but not all. It was in a row of shops and you entered off the street by climbing 2 or 3 stairs and opening the glass inset wooden door to find yourself in a little lobby with a counter and one of those bells you see in run down hotels in ‘40s crime movies. I remember that it cost around 25 dollars to make the record, but I don’t recall the room, the people, actually recording it…nothing.

susan-berry-2The song ‘Susan’ , I am almost positive, was written about the girl who lived across the street from me on Monterey Avenue. My first crush. I cannot remember ANYTHING about the song at all, but I DO know it will be embarrassing as hell to listen to. She was 3 or 4 years my senior, I was a dork, but she was always nice to me and we became good friends. I have written about her before in these pages. I hope she is well and happy and has a good laugh when I send an mp3 of “Susan” to her.

That’s all I remember.

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My First Recording I'll Try to be HappyChris and the guy who found it, (Thanks, Eloy!) and was kind enough to track me down, have been busy doing what they do and are unfamiliar with digitizing vinyl. I didn’t want them to mail the 45 to me until after it had been digitized because God only knows what sending a 55 year old record through TWO different Postal Services My First Recording I'll Try to be Happycould do to the frail little thing’s life span. To have found this artifact from my past after so much time, only to have it folded, stapled, or mutilated just before it reaches me would be like the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy or any Drake recording…tragic.

So…what to do? …what to do.

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MihranMihran Bobson is another Stocktonian I have known since the ‘60s. Another musician, Mihran is one of the easiest going people I know. Mellow, happy, smart…he elevates the mood of any room he walks into. During the 5 years I spent in Stockton (’89-’94) while my mother was recovering from a stroke and car accident, Mihran was one of the few people from my past I saw regularly. We went to his house on several Sundays to enjoy homemade Blintzes and talk music. I was especially fond of one of Mihran’s bands, the absolutely wonderfully named ‘Clamtones’.

We spoke.

He has arranged studio time to digitize the 45 and will email the mp3s as soon as he can. When I get them, embarrassing or not, I will add them to this column and repost it.

Thank you Eloy and Chris, and especially Mihran…for rescuing a part of my musical past I had completely forgotten.

In the meantime….

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The US: Just Me

Jack Ellis and the rest of USThere was a recording band before The Family Tree, and I am indebted to Jack Ellis for filling in the gaps in my memory about The US. The full story about this band will be in an upcoming column, but to give you a taste, here’s a track.

Recorded at Coast Recorders in San Francisco and produced by Sylvester (Sly) Stewart (Stone) who also contributed the harmonica. Unreleased because I refused to let Tom Donahue and Autumn Records add strings and horns. At least they respected my stupid wishes….

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The Family Tree: Keepin’ A Secret and Do You Have the Time

The first RCA single and prior to the Miss Butters album. The one release that RCA allowed the band to play their own instruments. We were a 4 piece then. Mike Durr on lead guitar, William ‘Kootch’ Trochim on bass, Vann Slater on drums, and me. The only way you can get these 2 tracks is to buy the Revola re-release of Miss Butters. They are included as bonus tracks. ‘Do You Have the Time’ was re-recorded for Miss Butters and renamed ‘Nickelodeon Music’ with Jim Gordon, Larry Knechtal, Mike Melvoin, and Al Casey replacing us. Our new 5th member, Jim deCoq played the guitar riffs and solo.

Keepin’ a Secret

Do You Have the Time

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Roxy: Listen to the Music and Tickets

Roxy owed Elektra one last single but Randy and I had already started working toward becoming more commited to our writing and forming a wilton_felder-gentle_fireband we truly thought would go all the way. That band would be the Wackers. We were put in the studio with Wilton Felder sitting in on bass and brought along our favourite drummer who played with us live when we went out with Rita Coolidge, Graham Nash and others to play some concerts. Producing and adding Dobro to “Tickets” and a smoking hot solo to “Listen to the Music” was guitar legend, Lonnie Mack. Randy and I played piano and acoustic guitars.

Lonnie MackWhen it came time for Lonnie to do his solo, he rummaged around in the storage closet in the studio and came out with a little Fender Champ amp and asked the engineer whose it was? Told it belonged to Eric Clapton, Lonnie said, “Hell, he won’t mind” and poked a couple of hundred little pinholes in the speaker. You don’t need a big-ass amp to get a great sound….

Here’s some background on the players culled from Wikipedia. I have been soooo lucky to have played with so many amazing people, all of whom are as nice as they are gifted.

Elektra chose “Listen to the Music” as the A side of the record, which was unfortunate…the Doobie Brothers track with the same name was released at almost the same moment. It was no contest.

Lonnie Mack (born Lonnie McIntosh, July 18, 1941, Dearborn County, Indiana) is an American rock, blues, and country guitarist and vocalist.

In 1963 and early 1964 he recorded a succession of full-length electric guitar instrumentals that combined blues stylism with fast-picking techniques and a rock beat. The best-known of these are “Memphis”, “Wham!”, and “Chicken Pickin'”. These instrumentals are said to have established the standard of virtuosity for a generation of rock guitarists, forming the leading edge of the “blues rock” guitar genre. The pitch-bending tremolo arm found on some electric guitars reportedly became known as the “whammy bar” in recognition of Mack’s aggressive, rapid manipulation use of the device in 1963’s “Wham!”

Wilton Lewis Felder (born August 31, 1940, Houston, Texas) is both a saxophone and bass player, and is best known as a founding member of The Jazz Crusaders, later known as The Crusaders. Felder, Wayne Henderson, Joe Sample, and Stix Hooper founded the group while in high school in Houston. The Jazz Crusaders evolved from a straight-ahead jazz combo into a pioneering jazz-rock fusion group, with a definite soul music influence. Felder worked with the original group for over thirty years, and continues to work in its current versions, which often feature other founding members.

Felder also worked as a West coast studio musician, mostly playing electric bass, for various soul and R&B musicians, and was one of the in-house bass players for Motown Records, when the record label opened up operations in Los Angeles, California, in the early 1970s. He played on recordings by the Jackson 5 such as “I Want You Back” and “The Love You Save,” for Marvin Gaye and Grant Green. He has also played bass for soft rock groups like America and Seals and Crofts. Also of note was his contribution to the John Cale album, Paris 1919, and Billy Joel’s Piano Man and Streetlife Serenade albums. He was one of three bass players on Randy Newman’s Sail Away (1972) and Joan Baez Diamonds & Rust. Felder also anchored albums from Joni Mitchell and Michael Franks.

Travis Fullerton is a rock musician, playing drums for various California bands and sessions.

In San Francisco, California Fullerton played with Sam the Sham in 1966, Quicksilver (briefly), and Mount Rushmore, 1967-1969. In 1970 he moved to Hollywood. He was part of the group The Hot Band in 1973 that backed Sylvester and recorded two albums. He has played drums for Rita Coolidge, Graham Nash, Stephen Stills, Martha Reeves, Billy Joel, and Roxy. He also added some background vocals on Lee Oskar’s Before the Rain album in 1978.

From 1967 to 1980 he toured or recorded with Stephen Stills, Martha Reeves, John Lennon, Mount Rushmore, Quicksilver, Bonnie Raitt, Sylvester, Billy Joel, Lee Oskar, Rita Coolidge, Graham Nash, Roy Buchanan, and many others and played on about 30 albums. He was signed to major labels including Atlantic, Blue Thumb, Columbia, Paramount, MCA etc.

In the early 1980s his interest in digital music, a computer science degree, and his connection in Los Angeles with Alan Kay, then on the board of directors of Apple Computer, led him to a job at there in the “special music projects group.” From there he moved to the Macintosh group. Since that time he has worked for Packard Bell and Microsoft.

Fullerton was married to Sandi Fullerton, a director of Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert TV series and The Arsenio Hall Show.

Tickets

Listen to the Music

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The Wackers: Body Go Round – The Single

Where Tom Donahue and Autumn Records respected my idiotic desire not to let them change The Us record into a hit with the addition of strings and horns, Gary Usher added instruments to The Wackers first single and not only did it behind our backs, he edited out the line at the end of the song that tied it all together. Thanks to Archer Dusablon, a Facebook friend of mine, I now have a copy and got to listen to it for the first time since Usher chopped and channeled it. I don’t mind the added drums and percussion and Hammond as much as I did back then, but the edit still makes me crazy. The line he removed? “If the two of us, are so much in love” after “what could it hurt” and before “that we go around together”. Judge for yourselves….

All the Young Dudes: Linda

This is a song we demo’d but never played live. It just didn’t fit in. Even so, I have always been very fond of it. I started to write it about our photographer’s wife, Linda…who was always pestering me about my hair, and then all the other nattering we all suffer at the hands of those around us and those who love us kind of crept in. I guess I was being kinda Emo, but what the hell…I needed to vent. I do wonder why I was feeling alone and distanced from everything around me at the time, but whatever it was drove me to write this song, so I guess it was worth it.

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The Segarini Band: 10th Avenue Freeze Out

Long story short, Jaimie Vernon enlisted a bunch of great Canadian talent and recorded a CD worth of Springsteen covers to add to the Canadian release of an already existing charity 2 CD collection. Springsteen’s ‘people put a stop to it. No one could ever figure out why, except the Canadian covers were arm and leg better than the covers on the existing CDs. I’m pretty sure that if The Boss would have heard Jaimie’s collection he would have loved it. We’ll never know….Thank you beancounting lawyer guys…thank you.

This is the original Segarini Band with the addition of Lawrie Ingles and Todd Miller, and the Segarettes; Yvonne Way, Jade Dunlop, and Annette Schaffer.

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The Goodbye L.A Coaster CollectionOne last cool thing I found. This mom and pop online store will take a vinyl LP and album cover and do this to it. How a copy of Goodbye L.A ended up in Hutchison Kansas is beyond me, but so are a lot of other things.

Thanks for dropping by….

Recycled Album Art

Hutchinson is the largest city and county seat of Reno County, Kansas, United States, and located on the Arkansas River. It has been home to salt mines since 1887, thus its nickname of “Salt City”, but locals call it “Hutch”. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 42,080.

Each year, Hutchinson hosts the Kansas State Fair, and National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Basketball Tournament. It is the home of the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center aerospace museum and Strataca (formerly known as Kansas Underground Salt Museum). On June 21, 2013, Hutchinson was officially proclaimed as Smallville, Kansas, the Home of Clark Kent (Superman).

Goodbye L.A Coaster Puzzle

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Segarini’s regular column appears here every Friday

Contact us at dbawis@rogers.com

DBAWIS ButtonBob “The Iceman” Segarini was in the bands The Family Tree, Roxy, The Wackers, The Dudes, and The Segarini Band and nominated for a Juno for production in 1978. He also hosted “Late Great Movies” on CITY TV, was a producer of Much Music, and an on-air personality on CHUM FM, Q107, SIRIUS Sat/Rad’s Iceberg 95, (now 85), and now publishes, edits, and writes for DBAWIS, osts The Bobcast every Monday night at Cherry Cola’s, and continues to write music, make music, and record.

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10 Responses to “Segarini: The Obscure Bob – Blasts from the Past”

  1. Still enjoying the music! and it was a record shop in Kansas that ordered some of it for me …. Kansas seems to know about ya too!

  2. That is a great version of Freeze Out ! Remember when we used to be able to go out almost any night of the week in all four corners of the city and hear bands like that ????????

  3. Jack Ellis Says:

    Wow Thanks for the mention Bob .Clamtones

  4. Jack Ellis Says:

    Who opens for the Clamtones “Dick and the Four Skins” Your off the charts BoB Great Obscure Story.

  5. Thanks for the great Segarini sound history lesson. There were some deep cuts that even an ardent fan has never heard. Too bad you can’t (or can you) compile a rarities download to sell on band camp or something.

  6. Jim Chisholm from Campbell River Says:

    Don’t get around much anymore (my own crumby computer situation !/<;*!)) . . . but a visit to the Segarini archives is like a breath of fresh air.

  7. Jim Chisholm from Campbell River Says:

    Just heard the Hungry Heart reference in 10 Ave… LIKE!!!!

  8. Henrt Magby Says:

    Many thanks to my old friend Bill Braun for pointing me this way. I like to think I’m not one of the mindless droids that inhabit cyberspace or the virus inflicting fools that clog it with useless rhetoric. Lookin’ forward to reading everything worth reading. Hi Chris, Melanie, Eloy and the other 60s folk.

  9. Dave Farley Says:

    Bob, you were Stockton Jr High same time as my oldwer brother, Larry Farley. Another great read, thanks

  10. Ernie Williams Says:

    Thanks again……

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