AUG 26th @ The Music Ranch
Las Vegas, Nevada
JUNE 30 @ Blues Room
JUNE 25TH @ LAURA BELLES
San Francisco, California
BACK STORY 1978
1978 was a year that did not see a lot of Bijou Street Blues Band
performances. Everyone had gotten a day job in order to pay off thefines
from the National Historical Service for accidentally burning down the
Tincup National Monument in 1977.
You probably don't remember that one, but Tincup featured a large
wooden statue of Colorado's most notorious con man, the great Soapy Smith
(http://www.mtnguy.com/owlhoots/smith.htm). Among his many innovations
in the art of the con, Soapy used to sell special quartz sunglasses to
innocent tourists newly arrived at Denver Union Station, warning them
of the dangers of blindness if exposed to the mountain sunlight without
protection. Soapy wound up shot dead in the boomtown of Skagway in the
Yukon Territory during it's last big gold rush.
By now, you know the boys' predilection for "bad choices", shall we
say? They had played the weekend at the Silverdome in Silvercliffe and
decided that a night camping in Tincup was a great way to wind up the
weekend and commemorate their Ghost Town tour stop back in 1971. Plumb
Bob had brought along a few bottles of J. Wray & Nephew Overproof rum,
which, in hindsight, was one of those bad choices. That was 120 proof
rum and probably would have fueled an Indy race car.
So, Bad Bob and Horse were having a contest to see who could shoot
flames the farthest by spitting this rum through the flame of a burning
log. One thing led to another and Bad Bob won the contest.
Unfortunately, the winning shot landed on the statue of Soapy. No one
how dry that wood was; the statue went up like fireworks. In another
unfortunate turn of events, it fell over on one of the historic ghost
town cabins. The fire quickly spread and accomplished what nature and
neglect had not - the final destruction of Tincup.
In their only bit of good luck, noted author and Bijou fan Louis
L'Amour interceded on behalf on the band with the National Historic Service
and got the fine reduced to a manageable level. As Mr. L'Amour wrote
"That town was worthless when people lived there and those boys just
finished a job that should have been done years ago. They may not be the
sharpest tools in the shed, but they've learned their lessons."
Other than opening for Robin Trower in the main tent at the Sex Change
Festival in Trinidad, 1978 was an uneventful year.
|Copyright 2007 Geiman Bros Records All rights reserved
Isn’t it funny how small the world can sometimes be? One day in 1988, a
wealthy young couple, Debbie and Joe, were driving through Colorado
Springs on their way to Denver. Being music fans, they always listened
to the Blue Plate Special, KRCC’s noontime weekday blues show when they
were anywhere near the signal. All of the sudden, they heard a tune that
was new to both of them and that they turned to each other to say “I
LIKE that tune, honey!”
Frank, the DJ at the time, came on after the tune to tell them “Now that
was the Springs’ own Bijou Street Blues Band, with an original tune by
their lead guitarist Dave ‘The Horse’ Patriarche. They’re sponsors here
at the station, but you should go see them anyway. They’ll be at Renners
– A Bar and Grill on Sunday afternoon.”
Joe said “I think they should play at our wedding reception, if they
don’t suck on Sunday.” Said Debbie “You’re on, buddy”.
That Sunday, they immediately liked the venue, as they had to step over
a passed-out drunk laying across the doorstep. Good jukebox, good food,
friendly people. They found out the drunk in the doorway owned a healthy
chunk of downtown real estate and was by far the richest drunk they had
ever stepped over.
One thing led to another, the band came in and played their first set
and sounded lots better than on the radio. Joe and Debbie booked them on
the spot to play their wedding reception. Had they stayed for the whole
show, things might have been different …..
The directions came, the day came, and the boys headed north, looking
like Afghans escaping across the border. Lo and behold, the wedding
reception was at the Cherry Hills Racquet Club, in a neighborhood so
exclusive the street signs were red, not green. After Security validated
the boys’ IDs to be sure they weren’t trying to move into the area,
setup commenced on the patio next to the dining room. In the foreground
was an Olympic-sized swimming pool, one of several on the property, but
the others were out of sight beyond a sea of tennis courts. The grounds
were immaculate, as you might expect. The tennis players and swimmers
seemed to be almost exclusively women and teenage girls who, upon closer
inspection, were almost exclusively drop-dead gorgeous. Walter commented
“Boys, I think we have stumbled onto a preserve of trophy wives!”.
Dave Brull had somewhat of a glazed look in his eyes and a smile on his
face that had kept several program directors from shortening his radio
career. He looked at the band and said “I’ll do the sound check,
gentlemen!”. Everyone was surprised, as Dave never sang and rarely even
touched a microphone. He hooked 3 50 footers together and proceeded to
light a cigar and start to strut like a pimp, singing the Jimmy Rogers
classic Walkin’ By Myself. Dave strutted all the way to the diving
board, singing while he climbed the ladder and went to the end of the
diving board, serenading trophy wives and their trophy wives in
training. A bravura performance and one that got a well-deserved round
of applause from the ladies.
Then something very unusual happened. The setup staff brought out 2 kegs
of beer, Moosehead and Molson. They asked the band’s permission to set
them up next to the speaker stands. Everyone said “Surely!” and they
said “Don’t call me Shirley!”. We then asked if it would be OK to drink
some of that beer, since it was ice cold and there were plastic cups.
The staff, for some unfathomable reason (probably caterer resentment)
You can imagine the rest. Fortunately for all concerned, the bridal
party was even more hammered than the band, setting a good tone for the
festivities. The only real problem was when Plumb Bob started screaming
at the caterer, reminding him that “It’s in our f*&^%$g contract, you
&^%$$# f&&&ot! We get one time through the banquet line, whenever we
f&^%$g want!!” after the caterer tried to feed them beans and weenies.
Those Bijous had learned a long time ago to put it all in the contract.
It took 3 Bijous to pull Plumb Bob off that caterer and he still got in
two good bitchslaps. Horse was also sufficiently inebriated not to
realize his nose was actually broken after one of the bridesmaids
stopped walking suddenly and his face made immediate contact with her
very attractive, but rock-hard buns.
During the load out, Dave Brull went missing. He showed up with 5
minutes to go, aggravated and moving fast. He had apparently invited a
matched set of trophy wives to join him in the band bus to check out the
Size of his organ. Sadly, one of their husbands overheard him and failed
to realize he was talking about his Hammond organ. Uh, huh. Dave gave
him the slip but was left unrequited, if you will. He did, however, come
away with names and numbers which he later parlayed into a part-time
career as Cherry Hills’ foremost gigolo. Just the mention of his name in
certain country club powder rooms will still bring a few happy sighs.
When Walter announced he was tired and was not carrying one more damn
thing, Dave grabbed Walter’s bass cabinet and proceeded to drag it down
the concrete steps with a thump, thump here and a thump, thump there. He
proudly announced “I feel better now!”.
There’s a moral to this story, but I don’t know what the hell it is.