Segarini – Bob Yodels Up the Canyon Part One


Portions of the following have been previously published in DBAWIS

Prior to 1967, I had been spending as much time as I could in L.A. (Hollywood County, to be specific), first with The Us, playing Cinnamon Cinders clubs in SoCal, and places like The London Fog on Sunset, then in search of the almighty record deal for my next band, The Family Tree …acquiring 2 (Mira, then RCA) while spending the better part of 1965 and ’66 sleeping on friends couches and floors, and even had a room at Suzie Hocum’s place for a time, down the hall from her other house guest, Gram Parsons. Great times then, with the music scene exploding on Sunset, and Laurel Canyon becoming the Centre of the Universe.

It was all in the service of my band at the time, The Family Tree, who had been the house band at the Whisky …but that was all about to change ….

The Family Tree broke up shortly after the release of Miss Butters, and I formed Roxy with one of the guitar players, Jim DeCoq, and we soon found ourselves with yet another record deal with uber-cool label Elektra Records in L.A. We had been living and rehearsing in a small house in a potato field on Highway 99 on the outskirts of Stockton California that we referred to as ˜Cold Red”, but now that we had transitioned to the hippest label in America at the time, Fame and fortune suddenly beckoned and made a permanent move to Southern California more important than ever.

It was time to leave Stockton for good.


05. The House on Horseshoe Canyon Blvd

Los Angeles: Horseshoe Canyon Blvd: This house in Laurel Canyon was rented by our manager, John Frankenheimer, and was where Roxy lived for a year or so before finding our own places. On the same dead end gravel road that also housed Joni Mitchell, Chuck Barris, and Mickey Dolenz, we lived above the smog and noisy hurley-burley of Sunset Blvd. and Hollywood, separated from the hot, arrid San Fernando Valley by the mountains and canyons in this section of the San Gabriels. This is where birds chirped, cool breezes flowed, and the sky was perpetually blue and clear.

Roxy Pic

Team Roxy. From L to R: Jim Morris, John MacDonald, John Haeny, (producer/engineer) with one of his prize winning huskies, Jac Holzman, (President, Elektra Records), Bob Segarini, Randy Bishop, Jim DeCoq, and John The Frankenheimer, (manager).

We watched the moon landing here. We ordered late night pizza from Pizza Man, and watched car salesmen Cal Worthington and Chip and Storm introduce movies all night on local television stations. We rehearsed the Roxy Album, and we became part of the local musical community while Manson and family carved their way into the history books.

There had been one other house, a place where even the furniture and house plants were rented, but we were very uncomfortable in the dank, dark residence that clung to the side of a hill under rows of the stilt houses crazy architects had built on the mountainous terrain. The Sword of Damocles complete with balconies and hot tubs, just waiting to tumble onto our heads during the next Big Shake. 


06. The House on Crest Way

Los Angeles: Crest Way: If you drive North on Vine past the Capitol building, Vine stops just as the street heads into the foothills and becomes Crest Way after a little jog in the road. Like the house further west in Laurel Canyon, here we were above the smog and backed onto Griffith Park. Moving in here led to the delightful discovery that deer would sometimes be in the back yard when we went out to the patio in the morning to have coffee and read the Times. The house came with a gardener, whom we never saw and never paid. A mother raccoon who had gotten into the habit of coming in through the kitty door in the laundry room to have dinner with the cats, Lloyd (who watched TV with me) and Ed (who didn’t) trotted her five newly born kits into the living room one afternoon to introduce us to them. They became part of the family while we lived here.

Randy Bishop, myself, and our wives moved here just as Roxy was unwinding and Rand and I were on the verge of forming the Wackers. It was a great house and the scene of some formidable parties.

We threw Rita Coolidge (Randy and I sang backups along with the Blackberries) a birthday party here, an all-nighter that saw some astounding music made in the living room played by guests who had played on dozens of hit records over the years.

My wife Cheryl and Rita ended up fully clothed in the dry bathtub eating chocolate cake and passing a bottle of Cuervo back and forth giggling like schoolgirls until the wastepaper basket had to be re-imagined as a barf bag once the tequila and cake met up in their stomachs. Rand and I wrote for the Dillards, Richard and Karen Carpenter, and the movie Vanishing Point here.

…and after being introduced to Mike Stull by recording executive and wonderful person David Anderle, decided to move north to Mike’s hometown, Eureka, and put together The Wackers. We were having so much fun in Los Angeles, we had forgotten why we had moved here in the first place. Rock and Roll, Baby!

It was all the time spent in Laurel Canyon and its environs between 1965 and 1970 that drew me to Andrew Slater and Jakob Dylan’s documentary, Echo in the Canyon.

…and that’s what part two is all about.

Part Two – Monday October 21st 2019


Segarini’s regular column appears here except when the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie

dbawis-button7giphyBob “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, continues to write music, make music, and record.

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