Thursday, 5 May 2016

Last train to Hooterville

Now that we weren't going to the bars in Toronto as much, we had to resort to the handful of lame bars in Brampton. There wasn't really much at the time, with the exception of Hooterville Station, which was generally inhabited by the college prep/jock type crowd. The place was always packed and we always stuck out like a sore thumb, which generally resulted in us getting kicked out when some pretty boy started shit with us. They did have their own alternative night on Wednesdays, and it was generally the one night of the week the bar wasn't packed. There'd maybe be 40-50 people, but they were at least the type of people I related to and associated with.

A lot of the times when I was going out in Brampton, it was with my newer friend Scott, who I'd met through Shayne when we lived on Homer square. Scott was a typical jock in his high school days, he played football and rugby like most did, but he didn't have the typical jock mentality. He was an open minded guy that had great taste in music and movies. It was through Scott I made another new friend, his name was John McQuaid. Scott had brought John by the Slayer House a few times and we hit it off great. John was also a jock, but there was something honest and real about him. Scott had dubbed him "Pino" because despite his Scottish descent, he looked and somewhat carried himself like an Italian. I generally loathed jocks and wanted no part of them, but these guys were different. I didn't know it at the time, but these two dudes would go on to be my closest friends before the year was through.

For the amount of activity that was happening with Wiggaz, we still didn't have an official jam space. The demo was recorded in the basement at Greg's house, and although we'd have the odd jam there it wasn't a regular happening. We were still playing shows when we could, which kept us from rusting up, but we were going to need a legit rehearsal space if we wanted to grow as a band. In the meantime, Greg's parent's basement and club stages would have to do. 

Black Belt Jones was still playing shows as well, honing our first batch of songs we released on our demo tape. It was the same usual stages mind you, either the El Mocambo or the Ivy Bridge in Brampton. It wasn't much but we were happy to be getting out there and spreading our sound to the masses. Mike and I no longer had our radio show at CHRY, but that didn't stop us from sending them our demo. During pledge week I made the highest pledge possible and in return received a sweet CHRY hockey jersey. I felt the need to support this station, as they were playing our demo and they'd always plug our shows for us. 

As the summer approached, both Wiggaz and Black Belt Jones were rolling with momentum, and nothing could stand in our way. We were looking forward to playing as much as we could and taking any and every opportunity that presented themselves. It wasn't long before some unique offers landed on the table. There was going to be a HUGE barn party in the south end of Brampton, and Wiggaz were invited to play. William New who was still running the El Mo reached out to Black Belt Jones in regards to playing a show with an up and coming rap act out of Halifax called "Hip Club Groove" and we graciously accepted.

Although my relationship with Tara had recently ended, this was indeed going to be a "Summer of love"...

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