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Artist: Bad Manners
Venue: Oshawa Civic Auditorium, Oshawa ON
Date: May 24, 1980 *
Tour: Opening for Max Webster
Members of the Band:
Buster Bloodvessel (Vocals)
Louis “Alphonso” Cook (Guitar)
Martin Stewart (Keyboards)
Winston Bazoomies (Harmonica)
Chris Kane (Tenor Saxophone)
David Farren (Bass)
Brian Tuitt (Drums)
Paul “Gus” Hyman (Trumpet)
Andrew Marson (Alto Saxophone)
Live in concert 1983
Artist: Max Webster
Venue: Oshawa Civic Auditorium, Oshawa ON
Date: May 24, 1980 *
Tour: Universal Juvenilles
Opening: Bad Manners
Members Of The Band
Kim Mitchell (Guitar and Vocals)
Dave Myles (Bass and Vocals)
Gary McCraken (Drums and Vocals)
Dave Stone (Keyboards and Vocals)
Comments: Exact setlist unknown. * Exact date unknown. It was either one or two weeks after the Club Annreene show. I attended this show on assignment for The Oshawa Times. Upon arriving I made my way downstairs, found the bands dressing room and spoke with Dave Stone, who managed to grab me a back stage pass. Which pretty much gave me access everywhere except up on the stage itself. Can you say Sweet!!? Here is an excerpt from my first book Not Only Am I With The Band…
About a month later, Max Webster was back playing the Civic Auditorium. I was freelancing as a photographer for the Oshawa Times newspaper and found myself assigned to cover the concert. After getting into the Civic, I made my way down to the dressing room. Security were keeping people a goodly distance away so I kind of hung back to see what might transpire. It was still an hour and a half or so to show time. The opening act, whose name escapes me but had a big hit with a Ska version of “Teddy Bears’ Picnic” at the time, had yet to take the stage.
Dave Stone came out of the dressing room.
He turned, saw me, recognized me from somewhere, and came down to where I was standing. Being the new guy in the band, the nine or ten other folks gathered had no real idea who he was so he passed through them unmolested. After shaking his hand, I explained that I had been with a bunch of friends that had caught the band up at the Club Anreen a few weeks before.
“We hung around after the show and shot the breeze with you guys.”
“I knew I recognized you from somewhere. Are you here to see the show tonight?”
“Actually, I’m here to work tonight.”
I explained to him about the newspaper gig.
“Wait here.” Dave turned on his heels and walked back towards the dressing room.
About five minutes later, I figured the next time I would see Dave would be when he took the stage. No sooner had I thought that, however, than he reappeared and made his way back towards me.
“This should help you,” he said, handing me a slip of paper.
The slip of paper turned out to be a backstage pass. Holy Shit! I was just stopping by to say hello. I had been to enough shows to know how to situate myself appropriately enough in the crowd to get some great photographs, so that was hardly a concern. And here I was with a backstage pass.
Dave smiled. “Put that on and follow me.”
In a bit of a daze, I did as he requested. Sensing that this person might have a little bit more of sway within the band than originally suspected, our progress was somewhat hindered in the narrow hallway plugged with the ever-increasing number of folks hoping for a glimpse. Dave led me into the dressing room. It was your standard hockey dressing room with wooden benches stretched around
each wall that didn’t have an opening attached to it. There were about seven people in the room. Kim, bassist Dave Myles, and drummer Gary McCraken were seated and trying to chill out before the show. The other four were friends or hangers on.
The three other band members seemed to recognize that they had met me before, they just couldn’t place where. Dave took care of that for me.
“This is Stephen. We partied with him and his buddies up on the island a while back.”
There were greetings all around. Here, have a Heineken. Want a sandwich? Have some donuts. I was in hog heaven. So I hung out for a little while, again just shooting the shit, passing the time and trying not to be too intrusive. My lighting duties with The Hash Puppies had familiarized me with the pre show ritual. I think the band appreciated it. After a bit, Kim decided he wanted to stretch his legs.
“Let’s stretch our legs,” he said to no one in particular.
A couple of the other friends got up and started to follow him out of the room. I figured what the fuck. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
Once he emerged from the dressing room, a cry arose from those assembled down the hallway.
“We love you Kim.”
“Kim, will you sign this for me?”
Kim turned and made his way towards the group. He spent a few minutes talking and signing autographs before excusing himself and making his way back towards the three of us standing at the dressing room door. We made a hole for him and he continued along the hallway towards the backstage area behind the far net. As his entourage, we felt compelled to follow.
Kim found some boxes stacked in the area where the hockey nets called their home when not in use, and plopped himself down.
“I really like these guys. I wanted to catch a little bit of their set.”
So there I was, backstage, hanging out with the star of the show, listening to the opening act and talking music. Have I mentioned that I was in heaven? I asked Kim if I could take a couple of photographs. He said sure, so I did.
“Kim, where can this pass get me?”
Kim smiled “Just about anywhere you want to go, except up on stage.”
After the opening act was finished, Kim greeted the band as they came off stage and congratulated them on a great set. I always thought that was pretty classy.
They seemed pleased as punch.
I decided to test out my new “nearly all access” privileges and made my way in front of the stage to that area which generally separates the band from their adoring fans. What a great view it provided me. So many times, I had stood on the other side of the barrier looking raptly towards the stage. Now I was standing with the stage at my back looking out upon the crowd. And what a crowd it was. Max Webster would always sell out the Civic and tonight didn’t seem to be any different.
After squeezing off a few photographs of the assembled horde, I made my way backstage. At the side of the stage, a couple of quasi-orgasmic screaming female voices distinguished themselves from the din. Not that I think they mistook me for a member of the band. I think they just recognized that I was able to come and go backstage as I pleased. I looked up to see a couple of miraculously well endowed young girls pressed along the railing yelling down to me.
“Tell Kim we love him,” said one.
“Tell him we’d do anything for him,” said the other.
That said, they both yanked up the front of their t-shirts and exposed their firm, young boobs. I’ll tell ya, being a young man myself, I was sorely tempted to climb up into the stands and forgo my backstage pass. I just as quickly came to the realization that any kind of interest they might have had in me would surely evaporate once I no longer had ready access to the true object of their affections. Instead, I settled for applauding appreciatively, thanking them profusely for this unexpected treat and telling them I would be sure to pass on their message.
“Kim, there are a couple of young ladies out front who are lusting after your body.”
Kim looked at me, bemused, and shook his head.
“The things I do for fame.”
We all had a good chuckle and headed back to the dressing room.
I spent the show in front of the stage, taking reams and reams of photographs. The band played a great set despite intermittent issues that Kim had with his guitar. Then, during the encore, his guitar started cutting in and out more frequently. Near the end of the final encore, it gave up the ghost for good. Kim, looking disgusted, threw his guitar up in the air and stalked off stage.
The mood back in the dressing room was tempered by this bad turn. I tried to tell them that the rest of the set was great. This information didn’t seem to matter to Kim. He hadn’t given the quality of show that he was used to giving. Knowing that, given similar situations, The Hash Puppies usually wanted to be alone, I thanked them for their hospitality and beat a hasty retreat.
At times like that, it was best if the band could spend time alone to lick their wounds. It has been my experience that artists are always hardest on themselves. A show, which by all accounts was a roaring success, could be considered sub par by the artists’ standards for reasons that would seem trivial to you or I.
Check / Drive and Desire
High Class In Borrowed Shoes
Beyond the Moon
Coming Off the Moon / Hangover