V Child, home-based in Mira Mesa, is all-original, the sort of band for which bookings are slim in the San Diego club scene. “We started in 2007,” says Canadian-born singer-guitarist Ken Najbert. “It was Dan Smith [aka Kretin Rock] the drummer, and I. We were looking for a bassist.” They ended up with Ron Call, a longtime local blues harp player.
Call played pickup dates with Tomcat Courtney, and he was a member of at least one evolution of the Mississippi Mudsharks, as well as playing with Earl Thomas, Bordercrossing, and Latin pop group Adammo. He’d always wanted to learn to play bass, so when the opportunity came along in the form of V Child, he bought a 200-dollar special from Guitar Trader. “I’ve been learning on the fly.”
Their first gig was at the now-defunct Dream Street, and their self-titled 2008 debut demo CD was partially recorded at Double Barrel Studios in Lakeside with Mudshark Scottie Blinn. The single “It’s a Girl” was showcased on Good Morning San Diego.
“Because we’re not a major-label act,” Najbert says, “we’re just trying to scrape by.” Like all bands that hope to hit the road, V Child have their collective eye on the mortal enemy of all DIY indie rock tours: $4 dollar gas.
“Gas Tank is our song about the frustrating rise in gas prices,” he says. “We made a pretty cool video to go with the song.” The tune earned play on KPRI, and their song “Royal Maya Crypt” was shown a little radio love by Rock 102.5.
Najbert says Dweezil Zappa calls him “the human blow horn.” In early 2012, the band hunkered down in Fallbrook during their spare time in the galactic womb that is Night Sky Studios.
“[Owner Steve Donato] has got the whole thing mapped out so it looks like a space atmosphere inside,” said Ron Call. “You look out the window and you see craters on the moon. The ceiling is painted like a night sky, and every now and then a shooting star goes by. I don’t know from where.”
Bassist Ron Call moved to Ohio in 2013, and was replaced by Ron (Unkle Zim) Henderson. The band's album Vanity was released in late 2014, around the same time that drummer Dan Smith left the band to move east. New drummer Eddie Sakaue joined in March 2015.