Friday, 27 January 2017

Welcome To Malton

EDITOR'S NOTE: A few posts back I had mentioned the disbanding of Wiggaz, in late 95/early 96'. Upon writing more I unlocked memories as I often do, and realized this was incorrect. So as it stands it is now the spring of 1996 and Wiggaz are STILL a band. Let us move forward in the story now.

In the spring of 96' the guitar player for Wiggaz known as One Gerg Noswad (Greg Dawson) asked me if I'd help him move a few things as he was relocating from Malton back to Brampton. I obviously agreed to help my friend so off to Malton we went. When we arrived at Greg's place of residence I was surprised to learn he was living with my old buddy Jay Dove and my former roommate Shayne who I had not seen or talked to in about 7-8 months. Greg didn't have too much stuff to pack, so I had a chance to catch up with my pals. One thing lead to another and somehow it was agreed I would be moving in to take over Greg's former room.

It was a bit of a bold move for me to jump from Brampton to Malton, but it had been a rough year of ups and downs with a lot of change, so I decided to run with the ball. Before I knew it I was living with Jay & Shayne and starting another new chapter in my life. My first order of business was to get myself a pet.

I had heard from a fellow named Mike Chesterman, the savior who adopted my cat Sapphire after we moved out of Slayer House. Mike informed me Sapphire had a litter of kittens, so naturally I wanted to give back. My girlfriend Jenny brought me by Mike's to pick up the only male kitten of the litter. We ended up being there for close to an hour but we couldn't get the tiny critter out of hiding. We returned a day or two later and I was now the new owner of a baby kitten. I decided to name him Fritz in ode to Fritz the cat, a character created by one of my favorite comic book artists Robert Crumb.

Shayne now had a pitbull named Mac, and needless to say I was a bit nervous having this tiny kitten around him. Surprisingly Fritz held his own and he was very cunning, constantly escaping from Mac into small areas that only he could fit. Mac would try cramming his face into said small areas only for Fritz to sneak out another route, scratch Mac's ass, and run off to a new hiding spot. It was highly entertaining and I could watch them play their games for hours. The two quickly became great friends and I had no worries.

Speaking of friends, somewhere along the way our pal Shane AKA Foxy Bano caught wind of our living situation, and he ended up moving into one of the empty rooms in the house. Shayne was living in the basement, and another friend named Wes ended up moving into another small room that was in the basement. It was starting to feel like old times again having the boys back together under one roof. 

One night Jenny and I decided to head to Hooterville station in Brampton for some drinks, and I ran into my best gal pal from school Julie. We were chatting away and reminiscing, as she'd just gotten out of a relationship with a man who basically kept her locked away. Throughout our conversation we were name dropping people when she mentioned she'd always had "the hots" for Jay Dove. I burst out laughing and when she questioned my actions I informed her Jay was now a roommate of mine. Somehow I convinced her to come back to Malton with us. 

When we stumbled in drunk at 2 or 3 in the morning we inadvertently woke everyone up. Jay strolled out, eyes barely open with a sour look on his face. Before he could administer any type of dissatisfaction I presented him with his gift, Julie. His frown was quickly turned upside down and everything was cool. They ended up hitting it off, and like Jenny, Julie was now a part time resident of our home. Little did I know I had made a love connection, as Julie & Jay went on to get married a few years later and they are still together to this present day, now with two amazing children in their lives as well.

 Shayne also started dating a girl named Rosina, who was the singer of Dr.Liquid, a band Wiggaz had played with a few times. The next thing I knew Rose was living with us and we were all one big happy family.  Jerry was coming over quite often, as was Greg and many other friends of ours. Inside I was the happiest I had ever been. After almost a year of dysfunction our family of friends was unified again. It was going to be a great year...I hoped...

Thursday, 5 January 2017



Happy new year and a happy 2017 to you all. I hope this year is great for you and yours. My resolution? Post blog entries MORE than once a month. With that being said let us move forward in the story...

1996 had been a roller coaster ride thus far. One of my good friends had passed away, i hadn't been in contact with some of my closest friends for months, I had spiraled down into one of my darkest moments of depression and alcoholism, I had met a new love interest, my band Black Belt Jones released our second demo tape, we were gigging frequently at the newest Brampton bar, and my OTHER band Wiggaz had disbanded. It was definitely a journey of ups and downs. 

BBJ was going strong, but as I mentioned in a previous post it had become a thankless job. Something had to give and something did give...the rave scene. Mike & Derek, who were the only two band mates into techno music and the rave scene, brought to our attention the type of money DJs were being paid to perform at these events. We had been paying our dues for a couple of years now and it was time to make some cash. We got in touch with the proper sources and before long we had booked our first gig at a rave.

It was most certainly a different scene than what we were used to, but people were open minded enough to give us a chance and embrace us. The first rave we performed at seemed to be going well until we blew the power just a few songs into our set. It was somewhat a downer yet at the same time I felt like the people weren't ready for nor could they handle the awesome power of Black Belt Jones. It was a great little teaser that generated some buzz for us in the scene. 

The second rave we played at had multiple rooms, one of which had a stage, which was a step up from the floor we last performed on. Unfortunately there was a DJ in the same room who's setup was slightly drownings us out. We upped the volume and continued to do our thing, a crowd slowly gathering in front of us. Once said DJ caught wind of such, he killed his music and joined the growing crowd. We received a warming ovation that night, and a short while later I was stoked to see we had made it into "TRIBE" a local zine/paper that covered the underground rave scene. It felt good to finally get some of the recognition I believed we truly deserved. 

We went on to play a few more raves, and the reception was always love AND we were seeing some decent money. There was never a shortage of free drinks and other assortments of party favors offered for our disposal. We were somewhat getting "the rockstar treatment". 

At one of the last raves we ever performed at, we were on stage at about 3am just killing it. We had everyone's undivided attention and the vibes were through the roof. Mid way through the set I noticed some flashlights moving through the crowd. At first I thought it was ravers until I realized one light had a badge beside it. I assumed it was a police officer holding his badge, but as the light emerged from the crowd I was surprised and somewhat taken back to see an Indian Sikh officer wearing a turban with the badge attached to it. It was such a surreal sight that we just kept on playing. They eventually shut the party down yet I cherish  this memory greatly as I've never seen another Sikh officer in the 20 years that have since passed. 

What started out as the darkest and most depressing year of my life was slowly illuminating more and more with positive light. It was a year of change and I was ready to embrace whatever new path appeared beneath my feet...