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December 29, 2006

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b. brown

Couldn't agree more regarding the genius of John Turlesky. Creatures of the Golden Dawn wrote some of the catchiest songs ever. His solo stuff is unparalleled.

Rory

Mike--I dated a girl that looked like Katie Jane Garside for 3 years. Yes, she was crazy too (a painter), but I was too high to care.

Pelecanos rules!

Matt Berlyant

Mike-I saw Sticks and Stones play many times (including a few at Middlesex County College) in and around the New Brunswick area between 1991 (when I started going to shows) and 1994. I even booked them once at a free, all-ages show at my college (Cook College, a part of Rutgers) and interviewed them for my zine afterwards. Chris Callelo (their drummer) even gave me a copy of their last Lp The Optimist Club, which was only released in Germany for some odd reason. Thus your post really struck a chord with me. I'm sure we've been in the same room (maybe at 69 Handy, 149 Somerset, Middlesex CC, various VFW Halls and Firehouses, various college activity centers around Rutgers, the Down Under) many times, though after '95 and especially '96 I rarely went to punk/HC shows. I didn't even know that they had started playing shows again until it was too late to see them, but I know they play out periodically, so I hope to catch them at some point.

Oh and right on about The Ex. I saw them play here in Philly a few weeks ago. Totally awesome.

Mike Lupica

Matt,

What zine did you publish? I'm sure I was at the Cook show. I saw Sticks and Stones more than a few times there, once in the all-purpose room, and a couple times up front in the cafe area. Also ABC no RIO, opening for Poison Idea in Trenton, College Ave., the Roxy... I don't think I ever saw them play a bad set! I searched high and low for a copy of "The Optimist Club" for years, even bugging singer Pete Ventantonio for a copy at a number of early World/Inferno shows, but never heard that stuff until the double CD on Chunksaah came out. Needless to say, it was worth the wait! I think I quit going to shows in New Brunswick sometime shortly before Handy Street started happening, so I missed out on that (very integral) part of the New Brunswick story, but I remain in awe of much of what goes on there.

Matt Berlyant

Mike-First off, to answer your question I published 5 issues of a zine by 3 different names. The 1st 3 issues were called Plastic Conspiracy, the one after that was called Dead Pervo Instinct (yes I know, terrible name, but I was 17 when I started it) and finally after that I settled on My War after the Black Flag song. The interview with Sticks and Stones (which I'm still quite proud of) was in My War, which I put out in the spring of 1994. I doubt that you would've seen any of them since I only printed anywhere from 100 to 120 copies of each and ended up giving away most of them at shows and unfortunately, I don't even know if I have any copies left. If I do, they're languishing somewhere in a box in my parents' basement. I'd love to dig them out, though.

Anyway, the show I was talking about at Cook that I booked was in the cafe in the spring of '94. They also played with Holeshot and a band I can't remember now that was an offshoot of Merel somehow. I also saw the infamous (because the club allegedly took all of the money) Roxy benefit show in '93 in which they played along with Weston and The Bouncing Souls. It was to benefit them after their van caught on fire when they were touring in the summer of '93. I didn't see the Poison Idea show (I think that was just a bit before my time; I moved to central NJ with my family in the summer of '91), but I also saw them at City Gardens once with Bouncing Souls on Halloween night in '93, at Busch Student Center once when I was a senior in high school (fall of '92) and several times at Middlesex (January of '92 and spring of '94). Anyway I'm surprised that you didn't attend any Handy Street shows. When did you stop going to shows in New Brunswick? I know those guys were doing shows as early as the spring of '93 (that was the first time I went, though I got there too late to see Ressurection; oh well).

And yeah, I totally lucked out on getting a copy of The Optimist Club. I don't know if I would've been able to find it otherwise as I hardly ever saw it in record bins. And yeah, that Strife and Times 2 CD set is a godsend. Absolutely essential. I was totally stoked when it came out. I'd been wanting to compile it myself, but never got around to it, so Chunksaah beat me to the punch. Pete told me a year before it came out, the last time I spoke to him, that it would be coming out. I also have some live stuff from the very early days where they cover The Faith's "Trapped", though it's only on tape. I got it the same time I got a dub of the Inner Revolt cassette (I never did get an original of that one though I have all of their records on vinyl including the 1st 7"; I have a great story about how I got it, incidentally).

lister zeke

Mike,

I've just been going through old e-mails sent on the wprb/"cassettemythos" list/group and saw your link to this under the faves of 2006 discussion.

I wish I made it to one of the Sticks and Stones reunion shows, but time hasn't exactly been on my side.

At any rate, I'll also agree about what a nice fellow that Brother JT is -- a few years ago, I set up a show at the notorious warehouse space in allentown, known as Jeff the Pigeon -- with Zs and Brother JT.

While his reception was warm (he is--afterall-- a lehigh valley native and some of his friends showed up) he opted on leaving the show without payment. I had no clue he left the venue and I felt terrible. I e-mailed him and he wrote back saying he was thankful that a place like JTP existed and was happy just to play.

JTP has since vanished (the last show was a couple of months ago), but not before leaving behind a legacy of being the spot where oddballs and screwups could go see fairly popular and diy noise/avant/punk musicians play and it was a place that breeded Air Conditioning, Pissed Jeans, and Pearls and Brass-- all native to the lehigh valley (allentown/bethlehem/easton) area.

lister zeke

oh--and that Beverly Kenney. I found one of her lps on Bethlehem with the Basie-ites a while ago at a thrift (in minty shape!) and what a voice!!!

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