featured photo by Micheal Stadnick
June 4th, 2016. My girlfriend dropped me off at the Uptown Whittier Car show. Was I there for the old school rods? Nope! One thing you need to know about me is I’m not a car guy. Don’t own one. Don’t drive one (hence why my lady dropped me off). I completely skipped that boat. I was heading to American Vintage Barbershop because there was a free show featuring 3 Wild Records acts playing! Can’t beat that. I’d pay money to see that lineup (if you haven’t read my love letter to WILD records go HERE)
Yes you read that right! Santos was playing. As far as I know he plays maybe once a year. But more on that later! I’d like to point out how nice everyone was there. Since leaving the Orange County area I have not totally gotten used to how nice LA people are at shows. So much beer there. Talked to a lot of great people. I have officially declared that everyone that went to that show are good people and they all deserve free beer. Which we received. That is most likely normal to everyone there. To me I felt like I was gonna be kicked out any second for walking behind the counter. But nope. This was less a gig and more of a kick ass party. Good times to be had by all.
Savage Breed took the stage first……..you know I’m lying. They took the floor. Once again a great performance by these Long Beach guys. A pretty good crowd came for them. I’m a gentleman and made sure I was not standing in front of any kids. I just realized I haven’t gone to an all ages show in a couple of years. Coincidently that was also a WILD Show. Gotta say, it was funny to hear Gabriel sing about humping while children were there to hear it. Oh well, they’re not called Savage for nothing! Love their energy on stage. I may have said this way too many times on Rockabilly Nerd but I heavily recommend checking these guys out live.
Ten years ago I got to see The Cramps play in Anaheim in one of their last shows ever. And I can honestly tell you that The Rhythm Shakers cover of “Ultra Twist” is the superior of the two. Kevin, their guitar player blew me away. I love his other band the Reckless Ones and I thought joining the Rhythm Shakers was a weird move but if anything he is a perfect fit for their sound. Marlene Perez, that lady was born to perform. Everyone was. But that performance was mesmerizing . I felt sweaty by the end. I also felt fortunate to be in the very front. Downside to the performance was that I didn’t know most of the songs because they’re off the vinyl only album “Panic”. I need to own this immediately or wait until its released on cd. The new songs sounded amazing and I need to own them.
Now for what everyone has been waiting for. The savage Salvadoran! Santos (Chicas Papas) . I somehow found confetti inside my shirt by the end of this performance (no joke the very next night I found a piece still stuck to the back of my neck)! So much confetti! If I had a pair of panties I would’ve thrown them at Santos. He went through all my favorite tracks. Fairchild, Mess about you. And my personal favorite…
He played that and I flipped! After that he left the stage. Leaving the crowd to yell “OTRA OTRA OTRA ” (spanish for again, or encore). We were ready for the encore…..we waited…..and waited…..and waited. Turns out he had to leave. To the bathroom…..There was a line. That was the funniest thing I’ve witnessed at a gig in a while. So to fill in time…
Alex Vargas (solo Wild Artist and surviving member of Hi Strung Ramblers who was helping out on bass) brought out his son to sing a song. Every woman’s ovaries in that building exploded! Gotta say I loved that the kid didn’t get nervous and ran. Who knows maybe he’ll follow in his dad’s footsteps and I’ll be going out to see him play.
Santos came back. Dressed in Elvis gear and gave us one more song. Yep that was it. He said his goodbyes and announced the surviving members of Hi Strung Ramblers were doing a set. What’s this!? I thought I was hearing things. I was told a couple of minutes later that they’re going to do a warm up set before playing a tribute gig for their late lead singer Carlos Gomez in September. Alex Vargas took on vocals for this.
I was very impressed. Did Carlos justice (Psyclone is in for a treat). I felt very privileged to witness this. This was (to my knowledge) the first time these songs havd been performed live since the tragedy. I unfortunately never got to see Hi Strung Ramblers live (downside to have lived in South Orange County for so many years I lived too far from good shows). If anything I was honored to be there. Sadly a lot of people didn’t know this was going to happen so a lot of viewers left before this happened. It was definitely emotional for a few of people there at the American Vintage Barbershop. Even I was getting a little choked up. I could spot a tear or two being shed. I held off on recording more of the set out of respect to those people. In all I’d say that was a memorable evening.
On a side note I got drunk for the first time in months!
I’m the shiny white one. By the end of the show pomps were destroyed. Bladders were full. Faces were rocked. Tell me what you thought of my review. Did it sound like fun? Did it suck? Either way you should just go and LIKE the official Rockabilly Nerd Facebook page.
Come back next time where we’ll go vintage dress shopping while listening to Flogging Molly!
p.s. I mean really drunk, I totally didn’t remember taking two selfies with homeboy from Savage Breed!