Waybill and The TUBES
PARADISE: Thursday April 12th
OF AMERICA….While the earth may rotate on it’s axis, it’s the spin
of the multi-media that makes it go round. Satirist like Jon Stewart
and Steven Colbert devilishly dish out the daily data as
the duo oscillate the headlines to the craving masses.
Although technological advancements have taken parody to a new level this
concept has been appearing at a Rock and Roll venue near you for decades.
The stage has always been a platform for artists to convey their message
through site and sound. Long before the plight of PINK FLOYD would
be determined; pigs would fly in protest over stadiums worldwide. The early
eighties would see the dawn of MTV, one of the bands that
would thrive on stage and in that medium would be THE TUBES.
Led by avant-garde front man FEE WAYBILL the TUBES live performances
are that of legend, including a visit to the Century Theater
here in Buffalo way back when. The TUBES entourage
of performers and props would give a summer carnival caravan a run for
who studied theater would sink his acting chops into the characters that
would be created from within the bands music. Born would be personas like,
Lewd the second coming of BOWIE’SZiggy Stardust;
the crafty vocalist would transform himself into the role of the excessive
rocker wrapped around the TUBES 1977 hit “White Punks on Dope”.
Other memorable charters who channeled through the zany antics of WAYBILL
are Dr. Strangekiss and
Hugh Heifer to name
just a few more. Check out the bands website @ www.thetubes.com
for an interesting detailed history of the mad-cap mayhem of THE TUBES.
Although the band gained their notoriety early on with their fanciful live
performances; it would be their work as well respected session’s players
that would catapult them into the billboard charts in the early eighties
with the classic tracks “Talk to ya Later”, and the 1983
smash hit “She’s a Beauty”.
Masterfully supporting enigmatic singer WAYBILL would be guitarists
Steen and Bill Spooner, bassist Rick Anderson,
original keyboardist Michael Cotton followed by the late
Welnick who would go on to tour with the
THE GRATEFUL DEAD,
last and most certainly not least drummer extraordinaire Prairie
Prince who has most recently spent time steering the NEW CARS.
The classic rock showman are on the road again this summer on their
“What Do You Want From Live” tour which comes to Blasdell
this Thursday April 12, at CLUB PARADISE. The ROCK REPORT
didn’t have to wait until later to talk to astute vocalist FEE WAYBILL
as he and the band where putting the final touches on the tour preparations.
Thanks for taking time out for us here in Buffalo. I have
to admit until researching for this interview I was one of those generic
fans; looking back do you think the stage shows may have overshadowed the
music and the bands stellar musicianship?
Not a problem we are looking forward to getting back out on the road for
some shows this summer.
Yeah, I’d have to say that was the case in the beginning the music was
secondary. We really went balls to the wall with the stage show back in
the day, lugging around sets, lights, dancing girls, at one time we had
thirty-five people on the road with us. The current line-up we take out
on the road today is truly a Rock and Roll band; quite honestly I think
we are playing the best that we ever have as a group.
You began as an aspiring actor and then roadie for the band before stepping
up to take lead vocals. Was it your intention to bring a theatrical
element to THE TUBES when you took over on mic?
That element was kind of already in place in Roger’s band.
Basically THE TUBES were formed when Roger Steen
and Bill Spooner merged their groups together in Arizona
back in 1969 before heading to San Francisco. I started with
and Prairie as the roadie guy when we joined up with Sputnik.
In the beginning the three of us didn’t really know any of the material;
so the first time out during a fifteen minute medley we came out on stage
dressed as the “Radar Men from Uranus” , the crowd loved
Really I started out as a backup singer but the response was tremendous
so from that point on we started to embellish upon that. Slowly we started
to take the theatrics to another level developing characters like “Paso”
the cowboy, “Carmen Miranda” with fresh fruit on my head
which I would eventually eat on stage. Another fan favorite we did was
“Brazil”; I would sing in Portuguese, the stage shows
really where taking off
When you took over the lead vocals how did you begin the songwriting process?
Did the band create the songs around the characters or vise versa?
We could see these characters where crowd pleasers during those early performances
so we started writing songs based on characters that I would develop. We
came up with the “Wonder Bread Boy” as a play on how obese
this country had become, we did the “bondage guy”, “the
homeless bum guy", and one of my favorite personas “Quay
Lewd” the addict rock and roller with the big platform shoes.
It all kind of evolved slowly over the first two or three years, once we
decided to go out and get a record deal we would use video tape from our
live shows instead of audio tape to entice the labels. We signed on with
A&M Records and it really took off from their, every tour became
more and more elaborate for about twelve years. With a label behind
us we had the great fortune to work with premier producers like Al
Kooper and Todd Rundgren who really helped hone our
studio skills as a group.
It sounds like being a part of THE TUBES was certainly an amazing
ride, what does the band have in store in the future besides the legendary
Roger and I do have some songs floating around so we’ll see
where that takes us time permitting, most of the guys in the band have
families and other business endeavors. I’ve continued writing material
over the years for other artists; I’ve had great success collaborating
with gifted singer RICHARD MARX as well as guitar guru STEVE
Another undertaking we are involved in is the THE TUBES project.
Original keyboardist Mike Cotton has been compiling archieved
concert footage putting together interviews with band members, managers,
and dancers both past and present for a possible DVD release. It’s in production
and we hope to have that out sometime in the future.
The ROCK REPORT would like to thank FEE WAYBILL for his valuable
time. We would like to remind fans you can hear an on-air interview with
on 107.7 The Lake at 3pm this Thursday April 12th
the day of the show. Following the interview FEE will also
be meeting fans and signing autographs at RECORD THEATRE on South
Park Avenue in Hamburg from 4pm to 5pm. You can also pick
up tickets for the show at that location. Hope to see you there.
COUNTRY (Original-Era Members of Molly Hatchet)
BEATIN’ THE ODDS is the title of the third MOLLY HATCHET
album released in 1980 and the first with fervent front man JIMMY FARRAR
on lead vocals. The late seventies and early eighties would see the Southern
Rockers storm the music front with their first two releases including their
chart busting “Flirtin’ with Disaster” record. Shortly
after that success the kinks in the armor became evident as singer
JOE BROWN would leave to start his own band.
Like all great southern Rock and Roll outfits the troops rallied and kept
the ride rolling along enlisting the powerful pipes of vocalist JIMMY
FARRAR. The blues belting big man proved immediately that he was no
Talker”, he not only talked the talked he walked the walked. FARRAR
copiously conquered the daunting task of replacing vocalist DANNY JOE
BROWN leading the charge with MOLLY HATCHET through two albums
and two world tours.
Although the bulk of the MOLLY HATCHET catalog was recorded from
1978-1984 the band has been a force on the road ever since, particularly
this current GATOR COUNTRY line-up. The southern rockers have persevered
through triumph and tragedy most notably the recent deaths of guitar great
ROLAND and late vocalist DANNY JOE BROWN. Through it all the
band has been committed to the music and the MOLLY HATCHET masses.
While the issue of the MOLLY HATCHET moniker may have ruffled the
feathers of some of the bands past brotherhood; it’s only toughened the
skin of original era HATCHET members vocalist JIMMY FARRAR,
drummer BRUCE CRUMP, guitarist STEVE HOLLAND, and bassist
WEST as they’ve formed GATOR COUNTRY (www.gatorcountryrocks.com);
these boys are the “Real Deal”. Rounding out the line-up
are former UFO guitarist PAUL CHAPMAN, and seasoned touring
axman LINNI DISSE, giving GATOR COUNTRY the patented HATCHET
three prong guitar attack.
Named after the song title from the bands debut album; GATOR COUNTRY
formed in 2005 following a benefit show for then ailing vocalist DANNY
JOE BROWN. Original HATCHET member DUANE ROLAND would
be a catalyst in putting the band together; his untimely death in June
of 2006 would deal a blow to this proud fraternity. After careful consideration
quitting was not an option for the surviving brotherhood; with the blessings
of the ROLAND family GATOR COUNTRY is ready to ramble on
down the road.
The ROCK REPORT had the chance to spend a little time in the swamp
with impassioned frontman JIMMY FARRAR as the band is set to take
a bite out of the road this summer, beginning with a rare club appearance
at PARADISE in Blasdell this Saturday the 21st. Opening
the show will be REVIVAL (www.revivaltribute.com),
Western New York’s best tribute to THE ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND.
Thanks JIMMY for your time, it’s been a long winter here in Buffalo
I can’t think of a better way to kick off spring then with a Southern fried
Saturday nite with GATOR COUNTRY.
my pleasure. We are really looking forward to our visit to Buffalo
the band is really stoked for the tour season.
–Lets talk a bit about your history both with MOLLY HATCHET and
other subsequent bands you’ve been in, I see your passion has always been
Oh yeah! I was exposed to the blues at a young age and it was something
that stuck with me and subsequently become part of who I am. I consider
myself a lucky man being able to be part of the MOLLY HATCHET legacy.
I’m equally excited about what lies ahead for GATOR COUNTRY.
I also really enjoyed my time with the SOUTHERN ROCK ALL-STARS (www.southenrock.com).
That band included another one of our recently fallen brothers BLACKFOOT
drummer JAXSON “Thurderfoot” SPIRES, guitarist JAY
JOHNSON who played with SKYNYRD and BLACKFOOT and bassist
HART whose a well respected touring player and engineer. That experience
really helped me cut my chops; these boys were gracious enough to bring
me along for the ride. All I can say is that I wouldn’t trade that time
and especially those friendships for anything in the world.
That band holds a special place because that’s where we convinced DUANE
ROLAND to get back out on the road with us for a short while until
he met his now deceased wife.
know that DUANE and yourself where very close his passing in 2006
must have been extremely difficult on both GATOR COUNTRY and more
It was a blow to the music world but it was especially hard for me. Of
all the people that I was in the MOLLY HATCHET band with he and
I were probably the closest. His death was not a good time in my life,
it still has an impact on all of us who’ve ever known and played with him
both on and off the stage.
Almost every Southern Rock band has suffered its share of loss, no matter
what else is going on we all come together like a family. Don’t get me
wrong there is a fierce competition when it comes to the music; it’s the
respect for the fans and maintaining a musical integrity that makes this
a special brotherhood.
COUNTRY has a significant section in the show when they pay homage
to fallen brothers DUANE ROLAND and DANNY JOE BROWN, tell
us about those salient moments in the set.
hard to describe because it’s not a rehearsed thing it’s just a feeling
we all get when we share the music with the crowd. We all seem to know
when the time is right during the set, there is a presence that can be
felt and that’s when it happens.
When I grab that mic I just lay it out from the heart it’s very organic
and the feelings and words just overtake me. What I might say of my brothers
in Buffalo one night will be different in Florida
the next. The respect for these boys and their contributions to us as people
and their musical legacy is something we hold sacred. We have no
doubt that they are with us in spirit on that stage each and every night
we take this show out on the road. That “Flying V” that sits on the stand
with us on stage represents the pure power and passion that DUANE
brought each and every time he took the stage. We owe that to them and
we owe that to the fans.
CAT- Lastly JIMMY tell us about the single that GATOR COUNTRY
has released a real rousing rocker called Oh Atlanta. Was
that DUANE’S last official recording before he passed?
That was really DUANE’S idea; it is special because it was his last
recording with the band before we lost him. He and our manager Keith
Johnson heard that song and DUANE thought that GATOR
COUNTRY could really do something extraordinary with that particular
song, I think we nailed it.
The ROCK REPORT would like to thank JIMMY FARRAR for his
valuable time; we would also like to thank Ron Schanne from
Management for putting this together for us.
HOYLE and the STRICTLY HIP
ANYWHERE, EVERYWHERE…..That is the title of the 2004 JEREMY
HOYLE BAND EP, and those words best describe where you might find the
multi-award winning artist and his bevy of bands.
The Canadian born songwriter/performer has been entertaining Western
New Yorkers since 1993 with an on the mark testimonial to Canadian
Rock and Roll Hall of Famers the TRAGICALLY HIP.
HOYLE and his band mates are by no means just a cover band the
talented musicians which includes Buffalo Music Award winning
guitarist JUSTIN KUBIAK allow them to surf the musical spectrum
from U2 to JOHNNY CASH with dynamism and grace.
It’s been the diverse dexterity of HOYLE that has allowed him to
don several different hats on stage. The latest act he has added
to the already impressive arsenal is TOBY LIVE and it’s been sweeping
the nation. HOYLE and company have been kicking ass across
the U.S.A. with the TOBY KEITH tribute. While this show may
have been born at the Buckin Buffalo Saloon it’s been packing
clubs in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Wisconsin and North Carolina
the past few years and doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon.
Like all good country boys HOYLE still loves that good ole home
cookin’ and not just in the kitchen. For the first time in three
months the band will trade in their cowboy hats for their touques; if your
for a Place to Happen” this Saturday Night,
IRISH PUB in South Buffalo is the place to be for the long awaited
return of THE STRICTLY HIP.
We caught up with JEREMY by phone as he was getting set to entertain
nation at the Party in the Plaza festivities for the playoff home opener.
are really looking forward to playing South Buffalo again, I think RORY
O’SHEA’S (Griffins since 2003) may have been one our first few gigs here
in the States, so when I say “I Love this Bar” I truly mean that.
We’ve been on the road for a few years now and look forward to getting
together with our longtime faithful friends who’ve supported us along the
When asked what 2007 holds has in store for the band he replied; “We’ve
been loving the road meeting new people, touring also gives us plenty
of time to work on new material. The lyrics have been flowing its time
to focus on what direction to take the music.”
The JEREMY HOYLE will be on the road most of the summer; here a
few of the local dates you won’t want to miss. You can also check
out the webpage @ www.jeremyhoyleband.com.
19th----Bucking Buffalo Saloon
21st---Griffins Irish Pub
11th---LaFayette Tap Room
21st---Last Chance Saloon---Newfane, NY