The Injuries of a Hated Uncle
I endured (and still endure) pain from the wrestling days; however, I did have some training in pain prior to those days. I refer to my days as Lead Vocalist of The Hated Uncles.
I had (at least) 2 concussions, damage to the knees due to my penchant for dropping to the floor – I woke up with many ugly bruises on the knees – and they would feel soft and loose for a few days.
The Injury List
- Concussion #1: Grapes & Things – Hamilton, ON – around 1986-87? It was an early show with HD, Bill, JK, Paul & Bruce. The bar was narrow, but long, and enough people showed up that the bar actually filled up nicely. I remember best friends from high school, John & Brian showing up, and I hadn’t seen them in a few years. It was also the first show where I smoked some “friendlies” beforehand – along with my usual 6 or so beers…the show went well…and I believe it was during our last song, I remember being on the tiny dance floor and I’m not exactly sure how it happened, (whirling around and stumbling into the partition sounds plausible…) but, I ended up connecting the top of my head with the wooden partition separating the dance floor from the walkway…I blacked out for a few seconds…the show finished up and the night staggered onwards.
- Concussion #2: Chuggies (now The Corktown) – Hamilton, ON – around 1988-89? This was a show with JK and myself as a short-lived duo version of The Hated Uncles. Our shows were the drunkest – even more than the earliest days of the quartet version of the Uncles. Anyhow, we were around 4-5 drunken songs into our set when – for some artistic reason I’m sure – I found myself trying to balance upon 2 different chairs – and I mean trying to balance on the top of the back of the chairs – d’oh! – the balance did not last long (if at all), I found that the back of my head connected with the concrete dance floor. I remember opening my eyes and seeing JK standing on some stage…then I clued in that, yes, I was actually performing with him! The show drunkenly staggered onwards.
- Knee Injuries: There were many mornings where my knees were pretty beat up after an Uncles show, but the worst was after we played at Zak’s (thanks to Mole for supplying the name of the bar!) on the corner of Main & Hess S (only a few doors down from where I lived at the time) around 1987-88 later? It was a decent sized bar (150 maybe), and a decent crowd showed up…the show was a good one (hahaha – I’ll write up some memories of the not-so-good variety soon enough!)…when during our funk song – where the band jammed on a funk riff – Uncle style…and I randomly scream out “James Brown!” or “Take Me to the Bridge” – I dropped hard to my knees – and the pain shot through my whole body…there was no fucking give whatsoever!! I wasn’t on the stage (of course not), I was on the dance floor, and it was fucking marble!! It took a bit of time before I could even try to stand up (I just stayed down moaning and groaning along)…the show went on – I did not go down to my knees again – or move much at all…the knees hurt like a motherfucker! Still – it didn’t stop me from ending up on the ground during our shows – ya know – communing…with the ground.
brain cells lost….damage done to mind and body after shows…alcohol, drugs…relationships…fucked up fucked out fucked over…
more to come…
October 17, 2015
The Sounds of Harvey Dog
So what exactly are those “sounds” Harvey Dog creates on his motherfuckers? Well, some of it is virtual…some of it is reality…and maybe some of it is fantasy…
- Voices: Yes those are my real voices you hear. Occasionally modified in Audacity to sound…different.
- Harmonica: A few years ago, my partner bought me a Lee Oskar Major Diatonic in C harmonica. While taking my dog Poobah on walks while living on Haida Gwaii…open, quiet, spacious…I would pull out my harmonica and just start wailing. Sometimes I would wail along to whatever was on my headphones…other times…just my dog, harmonica and me. I’ve just contnued wailing on it ever since.
- Percussion: Sometimes you’ll hear what sounds like “live” percussion – especially on my earlier ones. You would be correct. I have collected about 5 drums from thrift shops over the years.
- Everything Else: I’ll use scissors…cutting paper…toilet paper rolls…anything I can use that’s hanging around.
Virtual Real Fantasy
- Button Bass: I L-U-V love using the cubes on this site! I’ll try out any cube or combination until I find that sound – mood I’m looking for.
- Audio Sauna: I have only recently discovered this online synthesizer, and I can tell I’ll be spending quite a lot of time exploring the possibilities of sound it can produce…looks and sounds fantastic!
- Virtual Piano: The first online site I found. I play it by using the keyboard…I peck at it until something comes out that sounds like it’ll fit the mood of what I’m doing.
- Adams Virtual Guitar: The V-neck electric guitar sounds great…I love just hitting the 6th string open with my mouse – the ominous beauty of that sound! I’ll also use the virtual bass as well. Same idea as the virtual piano…I peck at them until something sounds right.
- Nick’s World of Synthesizers: I’ve had a lot of fun exploring the sounds on the 2 interactive synths on the site (The Beast & The Harmonicon).
- Virtual Musical Instruments: I use the drums on this site, and have also used the bongos and panflute as well.
- Virtual Drumming: Great drums sounds! I only recently discovered this site, and I get the feeling it’ll become my #1 place to go for drum sounds – when lacking a real live human being drummer, of course!
- Virtual Keyboard: A simple to use virtual keyboard with a drum track. Nice.
The Story of “The Fate of Merryland” as performed by The Hated Uncles…once
One regret I have is that (as far as I know – any copies out there?) there are no recordings of The Hated Uncles performing this play-like poem I was quite proud of. The story was that the King decreed everyone in his kingdom had to be happy – be merry – or else…The rebels were the unhappy ones. It was a rather macabre piece of writing that was inspired by myself putting on a happy face even though I was feeling so depressed I was cutting myself – to the point of once having to wear a long-sleeved shirt to work on a very hot day to cover the scars on my arm. In my story, I imagined a time when you couldn’t let your guard down and just be…sad…
The piece was performed once in a small theatre to about 30 or so people. The Uncles at the time consisted of myself, John Kinsella, Bill Day and Paul Settle. I don’t think Bruce Black was on this piece, but I’m not sure. It was a blast – even though I’m not sure how great the sound was. I didn’t even mind sharing the vocals with everyone! To me, it was a play, the words were mine, and The Hated Uncles were the musical actors. To me, this whole story typified the early Uncles in the sense that we would try different things. Check out the whole text of the poem at Harvey Dog Writings: “The Fate of Merryland”.