Hated Uncles

Hated Uncles: The Latest

Studio 1991

  • John Harvey (vocals) John Battaglia (guitar, backup vocals) John Kinsella (bass, backup vocals) Paul Settle (trumpet) Dave Turcotte (drums)

  1. Detroit City (3:24)
  2. Sycamore Tree (4:00)
  3. Why Do I Live in Canada (2:55)
  4. Where The Rain’s Dry (Weebles Wobble) (3:22)
  5. FFHD (0:34)
  6. Variety Store (3:14)
  7. Imaginary Friend (3:28)
  8. Larry the Psycho Cowboy (2:11)
  9. Heaven’s Mistake (3:28): This song features the shimmering keyboards of James Pegg (Peggpenn’s Playhouse) and the celestial, spine-tingling, vocals of Monica Knott (Sinister Dude Ranch). Thank you Monica and Jim!
  10. My Neighbours (2:58)
  • This was recorded in Downtown Hamilton (Upper James & King?) at Emile’s studio. (I can’t remember Emile’s last name – if anyone can help me out…) The only reason I’m not calling this “Kill Morrissey” (our infamous non-release) is because Kill Morrissey was an ep, and I don’t think it included all the songs. I believe it got sent to Detroit to be made up into vinyl, and never happened. Bruce Mowat will have more details than I do! I drank a LOT in those days. I do recall reading a review of the album (which was NOT released – haha – so we have a Hated Uncle bootleg out there somewhere. How cool!) in a fanzine from Kentucky!? I think that really happened. The review was…ok…a ***’er.

Variety Show – 1989

  • John Harvey (vocalization, Santa Claus Bell, Kitchen Pot, Harmonica, Poetry), Ron Chee – aka. John Kinsella (acoustic & electric guitars, bass, organ, electric hedge clippers, fabric shears, paper towel roll, back-up vocals, musical composer, poetry on “Go Van Gogh” & “A Walk in the Park”)

Hated Uncles "Variety Show" cover

  1. The Left-Handed Approach (4:08): wow…well, this is a nice opener for the cassette…we used to open our duo shows with this one…i still like it’s energy…sets the tone for the rest of the cassette.
  2. A Forlorn Dream (0:54): nice…a short little poem with nice backing from JK.
  3. Go Van Gogh (2:41): this was one of JK’s poems…nice false start in our nod to “Ballroom Blitz”…lol…very catchy, and I always enjoyed doing the vocals for this song.
  4. The Classifieds (2:19): a little slice of life…is this almost a folk song? hahaha…probably not.
  5. The Madness Comes and Goes (2:01): JK goes electric and we pick up the pace…this was one The Uncles kept in their repertoire longer than most of the others…definitely suits the full band treatment.
  6. Castle Walls (1:02): our punk song.
  7. That Damn Empty Feeling (3:59): our blues song…lol…i believe we ended most of our duo shows with this one…fun ending part – going nuts with JK…this still sounds pretty good to me.
  8. It’s A Wonderful Life (2:50): we start off the flip side of the cassette with this slice of bar-life…i love JK’s instrumentation on this one.
  9. The Ostrich Knows (1:57): we would open many Uncles shows with this one…i remember still doing this even after Dave joined the band…JK’s cracking me up as the ostrich…lol.
  10. A Man, A Penguin and Two Dancing Bums (4:55): JK pulls out his electric bass and lays down an awesome riff…crazy lyrics that i wrote (probably) in about 1/2 hour to an hour…hmmm…sounding better the second time listening to this.
  11. A Walk in the Park (1:26): from the pen of JK comes this horror influenced piece…i used to wear an old style goalie mask when performing this piece…an old girlfriend had a picture of me playing live, wearing the mask and a t-shirt of Jack Nicholson in “The Shining”.
  12. How Are You Doing? (1:37): angry!
  13. I Write Cheques (1:37): hahaha…i remember JK and I going on Mole’s radio show at CFMU and performing this piece live in the studio…there was a copy of this interview out there…somewhere? if anyone has it, i’ll put it up on the site.
  14. I Talk To My Muse (2:56): and we wrap up this 35 minute cassette with a plea to the muse.


  • It’s been years since I listened to this recording. It brought back a LOT of memories. You could say this is a bit rough…I prefer “raw”. Hahaha…This is the sound of 2 guys recording in a basement on $50 of rentals (tape recorder, mic) and going totally insane for a week recording and writing new material. I also remember it being an awful lot of fun! Thanks JK!
  • We dedicated it to Uncles Paul & Bill. Paul would soon rejoin the Hated Uncles for good, and while I lost contact with Bill for over 20 years, we have recently reconnected via email!
  • JK and I would embark on playing a number of shows as a duo. Oh Lord, I have a number of stories about those shows! Easily, the drunkest shows I’ve ever played…there was one time we were headlining in Toronto on OpenMic night (don’t ask…I have no idea…) and when we got there we found out it was free beer! …glug…chug…glug…by the time we went onstage, JK couldn’t remember how to play any of the songs…but, that was ok…since, I couldn’t remember any of the words! I believe JK just banged away on his acoustic guitar, while I rolled around on the floor spitting venom at everything and anything…I wish that show was recorded! There was also the show at the Corktown where I got a concussion from falling while trying to balance on a chair and a table at the same time…um…more stories to follow?
  • I have scanned the booklet JK made of his art combined with the lyrics…and the whole book will be up next! It is a beautiful book, and JK’s art is fantastic! He captured the spirit of the lyrics perfectly. We sold the cassette (cassette?!? yep…), along with the booklet in a little plastic baggy.
  • After we finished our tour as a duo, Paul rejoined the band and we were also joined by John Battaglia on guitar. When we got together we did a number of these pieces live until we had enough new material done with the band. We played as a 4-piece for a bit, until our lineup was completed with the arrival of Dave Turcotte on drums.

Live at Bannisters – Hamilton, ON – 1988-May-7

  • John Harvey (vocals), Bill Day (guitar), Paul Settle (trumpet, hawaiian steel guitar), John Kinsella (bass)
  1. Whole Show (15:15): It’s a short set, so I didn’t bother splitting up the titles. Warning: This is pretty bad sound, but it was a unique show, so for completeness sake – why the hell not?
  • This is the last show I have of the Bill Day years! I have 2 posters to put up next (1 by Bill, 1 by JK), and then we move on to JK and myself and our drunken duo version of The Hated Uncles. I’ll put up our cassette, “Variety Show” and scan the booklet JK made for the cassette. JK did an amazing job!
  • This show was unique in the Uncles chronology. We found out a week before the show that our drummer Bruce was leaving. We were opening for The Progressive Minstrels at Bannisters – good stage, good sound – looking forward to it man! For some reason I cannot recall, we decided to record all new music! I brought along a bunch of recent lyrics to put on top, and to get even crazier – JK decided to record sounds to use underneath the new music created that week. (I remember going to the Hamilton Public Library with JK that week to look for records with sounds to use – I think – or am I hallucinating?). All these new lyrics to memorize! We practiced every night before the show at Paul’s house, and I don’t know how or why, but I still feel this show sorta worked, and using the sounds underneath was a great idea and sometimes it actually came together…
  • I do think this was the last show we actually did with Bill. I always loved playing with Bill and it’s been great reconnecting with Bill (or Handsome Ned?) after all these years!
  • Bannisters was a strip club prior to hosting live music. At one glorious time – they had a strip club downstairs and live music upstairs. Now there’s a concept! I saw Ian Hunter w/ Mick Ronson there, The Forgotten Rebels, Paul James…many others, but the mind is liquid…I cannot recall…
  • David Little also recorded this show. Thank you Dave! I appreciate it!

Live at Teaser’s – Hamilton, ON – 1987-Dec-10 (CFMU Benefit)

  • John Harvey (vocals), Bill Day (guitar), Paul Settle (trumpet, hawaiian steel guitar), John Kinsella (bass), Bruce Black (drums)
  1. Anger (2:46): Our sound-check song. This is easily the fastest we ever played this. I love the intensity!
  2. Youth Has Flown (4:31): The only recording I have of this song. This was always one of my favorites of the early years. I wish we had recorded it in the studio…
  3. Carnival Song (3:15): Bruce Mowat called me out about this song on a radio interview – he noticed the obvious vocal inflection lifted from The Stooges “I Wanna Be Your Dog”. He was right.
  4. I Don’t Wanna Die On Heroin (3:12): The one song we carried over to the Battaglia years.
  5. Grateful Dead (3:36): Another crazy version of this one – usually audience participation on this one, and nice psychedlic playing by Bill and the boys.
  6. Vacuum Cleaner (3:14): way too fast…way too sloppy…why did we end the show with this one?
  7. Whole Show (25:51): The whole show includes an intro by David Little, a short pre-set interview with the band at the bar, Jamie’s intro and a bit of between songs dialogue from Harvey Dog.
  • This was a CFMU benefit. CFMU is the McMaster University radio station, which played all types of music from all over the world, including a healthy dose of local music – Mole and Imants had great shows on there as did many others.
  • I believe that is Jamie Problem from the fantastic “Problem Children” as the MC doing a great job introducing us.
  • We were the first band on that night – we sound-checked with Anger, but didn’t play it during our set; since, we sound-checked only 1/2 hour before we went on, and it was more or less the same crowd.
  • The sound on this isn’t too bad.
  • David Little also recorded this show.

Live at Teaser’s – Hamilton, ON – 1987-Dec-04

  • John Harvey (vocals), Bill Day (guitar), Paul Settle (trumpet, hawaiian steel guitar), John Kinsella (bass), Bruce Black (drums)
  1. I Kissed Society (2:19): A one time performance piece of me reciting a short prose piece I wrote that week over a vacuum cleaner and improvised music from the Uncles.
  2. At Peace (3:03): An early fave. Love Paul’s trumpet on this and JK’s bass.
  3. Vacuum Cleaner (2:59): A crazy poem I wrote lying on a filthy carpet at Beverly Hills apartments in Hamilton, ON pre-eviction days…our crazy fast shit…
  4. I Don’t Wanna Die On Heroin (2:54): Well…I mean…who does? Paul on Hawaiian steel.
  5. A Song of Heartache (3:29): Wrote this during a feversh night when I was 18 just before moving out after listening to Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” way too many times…
  6. Rock ‘n’ Roll Song (Foolish Heart) (3:01): Always liked this one…Bill sounds great!
  7. Journey to the East (4:43): Had forgotten about this one. The whole band sounds great! Paul wailing, Bill rocking, JK hard and solid, Bruce smashing away…This sounds like one of Bill’s psychedelic jaunts…I wish we had explored this avenue further.
  8. Grateful Dead (4:53): Paul & and I came up with this during the period I was living at his place. After a night of drinking we headed downstairs and just the two of us rocked out. Something else we should have done more often. Man, I remember, there was a great fish and chip shop up the street from his house.
  9. Carnival Song (3:36): I loved our Stooges “I Wanna Be Your Dog” rip-off.
  10. Lost in the Jungle (4:17): Another one I had forgotten. Must have played this & Journey only a couple of times each.
  11. Alone in the City (4:11): Paul on Hawaiian Steel, and The Uncles last song on the tape (apparently there was more to the show, but the tape ran out). The tape ends on a sensitive note.
  • Teaser’s was only around a couple of years, but it was a cool bar. We played there a few times. One time, our painter for the evening, Paul Ropel-Morski, made such a mess while painting, that we were banned from having a painter again at Teaser’s.
  • I remember something with the band putting our hands on top of each other and saying: “where are we going?” “to the top” “which top?” “the very top!”…or something like that…
  • The infamous Lazlo (immortalized in song by The Dik Van Dykes) was at this show and danced up a storm.
  • The show was taped by David Little. Thanks Dave! I remember the legendary Imants Krumins (RIP) being at this show as well.

The First Recordings 1986

  • John Harvey (vocals), Bill Day (guitar), Paul Settle (trumpet, hawaiian steel guitar), John Kinsella (bass), Chris Fozard (drums)
  • The first 3 songs written and duly recorded by The Hated Uncles. The Hated Uncles at this time were John Harvey, Bill Day, Paul Settle and John Kinsella. Chris Fozard was our studio drummer for this session.
  • The songs were recorded in Burlington, Ontario. Unfortunately, time has diminished my capacity to recall the name of the studio or the recording engineer – who did a great job!
  • At Peace (3:21): 1 of our first 3 songs and still feel warm towards it…especially the first part…
  • Anger (5:05): This has always been one of my favorite Hated Uncles song, and I never understood why it didn’t lead to solidifying our career as our #2 single behind the novelty #1 Name On A Gravestone, and leading to a 5 album deal with Columbia and Bob Dylan on acid producing us with Mick Ronson doing the arranging…then we toured with Iggy Pop…
  • Name on a Gravestone (5:08): The song that got us our notoriety…shows with me imitating David Bowie doing Hamlet – making out with a skull made by artist friends and JK and then smashing it to bits…the good old days…