For the past few months this column has been maintaining themes on both Pleasanton (“Ton Town”) and various indignities from my youth.
(Once, when HICKEY played in Pleasanton, Matty Luv managed to sum up my whole growing-up-in-Pleasanton experience before they even played their first song.)
While these stories of my past are hopefully laughable, if not relatable, they are in truth just stalling tactics deployed while I wait on others to finish their parts for future LSotM’s. I don’t want to spoil it but I have some exciting collabs and zippy tunes in the works. But that’s in the future and we all know there is no future, so what content do I have for you NOW? What fetid meats, what naked baby pictures have I resurrected for your short attention spans this month?
“This” is a music video executed by the band I started in high school called Your Mother. I say that like I don’t already know the first and last name of everyone reading this. But hey, in the off chance you’ve stumbled upon this junk drawer of a monthly column without the knowledge that I was in a band called Your Mother then I welcome you. May you reap the rewards of finding another diversion from your job.
** This video was filmed on my 25th birthday at ███████ ████ Middle School in Ton Town, CA. Access to the school was procured by my ex-step mom who I believe is now the superintendent of this same school district, though me sharing this information may now jeopardize that.
** The video’s director/cinematographer/co-conspirator is award-winning movie-maker-turned-winemaker, Adam Barker. Adam lived down the hall from our bass player, Alan, in the San Jose State University dorms. Crafty, cunning, creative, charismatic, cool, and lacking two shits to give, Adam deftly commandeered some of the school’s video equipment and proceeded to cobble together a no-budget comedy about how un-crafty, un-cunning, un-creative, un-charismatic, and un-cool San Jose was. That comedy became a cult favorite and landed him a job at Fox editing together extreme sports specials that gave people headaches. He was then given an RV full of money to make a motocross film and that, long story short, is how I ended up being in a movie with Lemmy.
** In keeping on-brand for Adam, this was filmed in half a day without any proper location permits using a fancy camera that he discreetly hoisted from the offices of Fox. I cannot confirm that the camera made it back to the gear locker without damage, or indeed, if it made it back at all. All I know is that the footage itself was lost to time.
** The bikes used throughout this video were Alan’s creations, akin to the toys found under Sid’s bed in Toy Story. His goal was to “elevate bicycles to new heights of un-ride-ability” (see the Colonel Matthew von Burink’s crash at :33 and Joe’s crash at :55 for evidence of Alan’s success in this venture). More on Joe and Alan can be found here.
** Mikey (né Zebra X) was always considered the bully in our troupe which was an easy role to fill considering the rest of us were wimpy dorks who much preferred Settlers of Catan and root beer to his professional wrestling and GG Allin worship. Ergo, it made sense that he would be the school bully in our video.
** The cheerleader that ultimately beats up Mikey was my ex-step sister. She went on to be 1) a famous dating game show contestant, and 2) ultra-ultra rich.
** Back to Mikey… In a band with two singers Mikey was not one of them. He sang some backups here and there but he was more likely to share tasteless jokes into a microphone than sing into one. It is my guess that he brought the idea of covering this song to practice and it was too dumb a song not to cover so we did it, and he sang it. After all, we had more pressing songs about “sick motherfuckers farting in the pit” to focus on, so third-rate teen sitcom themes were able to slide into our set as easy as, say, “Weird Al”s a capella version of the Rolling Stone’s “State of Shock.” Plus, our past records were positively festooned with unnecessary covers of TV theme songs (and even TV commercials) so what harm was there in adding one more? (Keen readers of this column may notice that I’m still doing that.) But why then, for our flagship effort to enter the music video market, did we chose a cover song that nobody in the band particularly cared for and was sung primarily by the non-singing guitar player? I’d use a quote from Screech from Saved by The Bell as a witty tie-in but alas, I’ve never watched the show.
** Those being shaken down on their way into the classroom are, in order: Bradley (future The Love Songs drummer, then Your Mother drummer), Pete-sa (our friend who lost his shit one year after hearing too many Christmas songs at work), Alan (who loses his thumb in this video BUT IS STILL ABLE TO SLAP THAT GODDAMNED BASS TODAY), Sean (from Deities, and also from last month’s feature about Deities), Seth (eventual Love Songs bass player), and me (who spent half the day in this middle school classroom even though I WAS 25 YEARS OLD).
** More about Mikey… So committed was he to his professional wrestling proclivities that he took that head-meets-door move to its logical conclusion and really hurt himself by the twelfth or thirteenth take, much to our collective delight. “Maybe we should get that one more time from a different angle…”
** 20 years after our injurious morning at ███████ ████ Middle School, another SJSU alum, Alex Koll, found every last frame that Adam filmed stored on an unmarked hard drive that almost certainly also contained every episode of the Care Bears. Alex managed to shoehorn our hours of pre-Jackass jackassery into this one-minute video. (He is the Wizard at the :43 mark, and I’m pretty sure he showed up like that, no costume change required.) Alex now shoehorns graphics and jokes into these vignettes, among other things found at AlexKoll.com. He also made this masterpiece which may be one of my proudest moments on video despite having almost nothing to do with it besides standing in front a green screen for a couple hours:
>>>> I have a huge apology to make regarding last month’s column celebrating the majesty of Camino Brazos. I somehow managed to skip over the nuttiest band to ever exist on that street, a band that was forged no less by the guy who has appeared in half of these columns already, Paul! The band was Lurch and it is safe to say that they did all the drugs on Camino Brazos.