Friday, June 10, 2005

Extra Action Three Day Stubble

I saw a great show last night at the Eagle Tavern, a gay biker bar cum rock club at 12th and Harrison in San Francisco. Former Peenbeets drummer Mr. Positive (a.k.a. Brown Whornet vocalist Stin-G-B) told me he was playing with pioneering nerd-rock dadaists Three Day Stubble. Stubble doesn't play all that often, so this was a treat.

TDS started 25 years ago in Houston, but they wound up shifting their base of operations to San Francisco in the early Nineties for reasons that become obvious once you see them. Vocalist Donald the Nut was once a contestant on The Gong Show and he has wooed crowds from Edinburgh to Tokyo with his electrocuted hair and screaming polyester. He's even been known to lie down on stage and release a fount of pee straight up into the air.

Unbeknownst to me, Donald is in Japan right now. Imagine my surprise when my former bandmate bounded up on stage in full Donald regalia. Mr. P's spirited interpretation of the Stubble catalog was right on, and I'm sure there were people in the audience who didn't even realize something was amiss (at least not more than it already would be at a Stubble show). I love being tricked in the name of entertainment.

I was also fortunate to see the Extra Action Marching Band. They're an 40-piece marching band that would fit right in under the Friday night lights of Texas if not for the Gibby Haynes-style bullhorn antics of the pep marshal and the g-string clad drill team furiously shaking their sweaty forms on top of the bar mere inches from my befuddled yet not-altogether-unhappy face. They put on a big scrum of fun, highly-sexualized abandon that affirms the joy of existing. Seeing them in a club was perfect, but I'd be interested to see what they do at the Hollywood Bowl on June 26 when they open for David Byrne.

Also playing were the Dead Hensons, a very enjoyable troupe of seven or eight multi-instrumentalists playing old Sesame Street and Muppet Show songs. I've always been a sucker for the music of the late Joe Raposo, so this was right up my alley. They did a bunch of the great counting songs, but not the psychedelic "Jazz Numbers" animation (the one with the race cars) sung by Grace Slick, which is my favorite. That's all the more reason to come back out here and see them again.

1 comment:

Dermott said...

ooooo...I wish I coulda seen that. I was living in h-town when TDS was there. They were a big inspiration to perform. de Schmog played with them in San Fransisco too and the last time Tricia and i visited SF we were at a lovely brunch party with Donald who I didn't recognize at first because he was in street clothes and wearing a pony tail. You see, these TDS really are men of mystery.