horny genius • live

                            
1 October 20, 1985   Memorial Union, Iowa City,IA  Total Fools  $0
Zero would denote the amount of money not the name of a band. Let’s
see, a show in the afternoon, my parents were there (my dad with
fingers in his ears), our first show with Scott Mc. (he drumming for
both HG and TF). We kept changing our name after each song to further
confuse things. Played a lot of Max songs for the first time live
(namely because not that many shows were played before that). Mostly
friends and annoyed students trying to study in attendence.
                              
2 December 10, 1985  Amelia'sDeli, Iowa City  Del Fuegos  $25
 Ah, the big time. We open for corporate shills (Miller Beer) and make
with the fat cash. Mike’s first show with the Fender Twin bought from
Devin Hill (during the set something began smoking ominously behind it-
some say it was a Muffin cigarette. I say it was Satan checking up on
his amp). Dan Zanes from the Del Fuegoes loaned us a guitar tuner
because he said he hated to here bands have to tune to each other-
Brian and I looked at each other dumbly having never used one before
and then I said “gimme an E”.
                              
3 February 27,1986  Amelia's, I.C.  L.A.S.A. Benefit w/Total Fools,
Drednex,others  Zero

Remember some of this show. It was video taped by Katie Showalter (wish
I had a copy of the whole set, but 4 songs survived). We played well as
I recall and I even broke a bass string (the first of many playing
live). The first time I met Ed Nerhing I believe (you can see him
headbobbing in the vid). There was also a country band who did
straight-up Hank Williams covers with an old UW janitor as singer and
also an appearance by the Less Than Adequate Band (at least 12 people
on stage at one time and Keith Perry doing his best (?) Jimi licking
the guitar neck solo. Oh yes, and Linus Minus, a band with Kevin
Gibson"s (our friend, benefactor and the only person who'd regularly
give us shows)brother, cousin or something in it. I left before the
Fools played having to get up early to go to work (sucker).
                              
4 March 5, 1986  Amelia's, I.C.  Camper Van Beethoven  $60
Wow! An actual gig with an actual well known and respected band. CVB
were very nice to us before during and after the show. The roadie said
we were probably the first band to warm-up for them that wasn’t  a
hardcore punk band hence they liked us. This was also when we
instituted the “go on half an hour before you’re supposed to go on so
you can play longer” tactic. God when I think now of how many bands
I’ve hated for doing just that, I wish I could go back in time and
strangle myself. But then considering how long we took between songs,
we probably had a normal length set. Just stretched out to ridiculous
lengthes. CVB were great, funny, talented and made Keith Perry mad when
they did a country version of "White Riot" by the Clash. Overheard as
Perry argued with David Lowery from CVB after the show:
Lowery-"So you're saying it's okay for punk bands to cover and make fun
of top forty and country, but we can't do punk bands?"
Perry: "It's not the same THING!!! It's not!"
                            
5 April 19,1986  Amelia's, I.C.  Turbines  $40                     
I got REALLY drunk the night before and was agonizingly hungover most
of that day, which made for a FUN show. Also realized I had fairly
acute hearing loss while standing in front of the PA during the
Turbines soundcheck while everyone else had moved to the back of the
bar. “oh I didn’t think they were that loud…”. Jeff Haag, the old HG
drummer saw us for the first time since he'd left- "weird" was his
comment, meaning odd to see us playing and not be playing.
         
6 April 25,1986  Elks' Club, Davenport,IA  Drednex & Total Fools  $56
Oh this night could be a book unto itself. So much happened. to be
continued...Suffice to say: racist white Elk's Club (we got the wrong
Elks club-"Oh you mean the nig- er black Elk's Club. Well that's
downtown"), teen skate punks with dilated pupils, friends showing up on
acid, a stuck thermostat set at 95 degrees and it was summer, some
scary old punk randomly yelling "wanker!", watching MTV in the back bar
while mayhem ensued, an altercation in the parking lot which led to the
cops showing up, the cops giving us iether 15 minutes to play  or
closing down the show, Brain, Mike and I having a quick meeting in an
equipment room full of Nissan gym stuff, we deciding fuck it let's
play, this strange feeling of a prolonged, continuous explosion going
on as we played as the skaters flew back and forth in front of us , the
cops walking around the perimeter with hands on their holstered
billyclubs, us dedicating a song to a girl with a birthday (oh great
way to celebrate!)and playing our newly rehearsed version of "Hair of
the Dog.", introducing Brian as "Old Horseface" (a Lionel Ritchie
reference) before we did "Walkin' Boss" (ooh! two covers! paging Keith
Perry!),the bass speaker crapping out, finishing while the teen
promoter incited the rednecks outside.
Okay maybe it could be a short very concentrated movie instead of a
book, maybe someday I'll expand it.          

7 May 31,1986  City Park, Iowa City,IA(CORNSTOCK)  Cornstock III (Total Fools, Stickdog, Stiff Legged Sheep, others  $0

Mike reminds me that for some reason we all dressed in white for this
gig (I remember the photo up on the wall of Record Collector and I
still can’t figure out why. Mike was thinking it might have been a
cheery fuck you to all the dressed in black punkers. Could’ve been that
that was the theme (Cornstock usually seemed to have a theme). Could’ve
been all our black clothes were in the wash or that we didn’t call each
other that morning to discuss wardrobe. Cornstock was a yearly event
held at the old IC Zoo monkey house on a big cement stage and was also
usually closed down by the police on a yearly basis. So much fun had by
all. Total Fools played their last show (Mark Davies smashed a guitar,
which was later set on fire by TA-DA! Keith Perry, and Gloria
sang/yelled as her younger sisters watched at her feet). Stickdog was
amazing (Paul Neff from Stiff Legged Sheep played violin with them
too). Usually you wouldn’t think a dark industrial type band could pull
off a show this intense outside in broad daylight but Stickdog was
mesmerizing. Especially when you heard the drum machine and Gibb
Curry’s live drum echoing off the hillsides. YOW! The Sheep were also
on it, as usual. This was the show where somehow I bonded with Paul
Neff. He’d always scared me a little before this. Friendly, but he was
in Stiff Legged Sheep and SLS were the Iowa City punk band. So Paul and
I stood in front of the stage and talked like Arkansas yokels for a
while- “Yup.” I have a memory of Iowa Beef Experience playing too- the
Bob Hall incarnation, but I’m not sure. We were okay I think (always
tend to remember other bands shows better than ours). Okay, we rocked
like mofos dammit!!! Mike, help me out here- what happened during our
set? Always liked playing Cornstock, if just for the cement stage damp
with the possibility of electrocution. Mike adds: Cornstock- You're
right we were to dress in white, that was the theme but I think we were
the only boobs to go through with it. Gig was good what I remember.....
I was amazed that Paul Neff actually liked us and all that, probably
because sometimes we came over as geeks......                     

8 June 27,1986  Deans' Parkade, Cedar Falls, Iowa  Stiff Legged Sheep and Drednex  $40 

An out of town show! With SLS and the Drednex originally booked to be played at “The Boathouse” at the county fairgrounds. So with memories of the Elk’s Club show still fresh, we pull up to see a county fair going full swing with farm animals being judged in said Boathouse. Hmmm, this seems familiar…Brian, Mike and I of course wouldn’t have had any trouble, having rehearsed on the Hageman and Turnis farm to many a bovine audience who farted appreciatively. But as luck had it the Sheep showed up to tell us the gig had been moved to Dean’s Parkade, a bar in downtown Cedar Falls. The Drednex set was semi-impromptu as their original lead singer had come back for a visit from CA and did a few songs. Our set was alright, we played more new stuff, some for the first and last time as they were Brian’s. We took the normal eight years between songs, but nothing spontaneously combusted. The Sheep just floored us all. Violin and harmonium added to the standard guitar, bass and drums, plus their increasingly more complicated time signatures. Mike: Dean's- They had a really nice wood floor there,almost like a studio...... yes we took about 20 min. between songs. Really hot out, rest of the Fools were there too.                     

9 July 4,1986#(Independence Day)  City Park, I.C. # Prententious Bastards  $0

Oh boy! A big day indeed! The last show with Brian before he and most of the Fools took off for San Francisco and the first sighting our next guitar player and light of our loins- Scott Siegling! The 4th of July show again held at the city park and old zoo, but put on by the Lions or Jaycees or something, so little chance of being shut down by the police. Mostly awful shite college bands and cover bands etc. and then we and Pretentious Bastards, the Bastards containing Scott, Dave Johnson and our friend Steve Walters. Distinctly remember Mike and I discussing our future without Brian as PB played and me saying “What about him?” as we gazed at Scott in mascara and spandex playing Subterranean Homesick Blues using just one chord. Perfect. Oh there was magic afoot or was I drunk? We played, we rocked, we left, but not before having an all-out feedback frenzy at the end with Brian and I ending up in a twisted pile of cords and mic stands. Best part was as the noise fest was going on and Brian and I were on the ground, the voice of long suffering soundman for hire Dennis Jones came over a vocal monitor saying “I really love you guys, but could you stop soon?” As if God himself gave us the final epitaph. Mike:  4 july 1986- I
remember Gloria coming up after the show and saying" that was really
bad!" We weren't really sure about Scott until after about  5 pitchers
of beer later at that night ......what was that place again across from
the bookstore downtown, the was a record store upstairs??????  Djonn:
The bar would’ve been the Deadwood and the Record Store BJ’s with Sal
the bleched blonde hairfarmer behind the counter…                             

10 November 5, 1986*  Gabe's Oasis, Iowa City, IA*  House of Large Sizes and Drednex  $46                                

11 November 15,1986  Gabe's Oasis, I.C.  Shellgame and New World Mutants  $91

                     

h.g. main