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San Diego's punk music, goodbye to Lennon

Reader writers tell favorite music

Rocket From the Crypt (John Reis, center; Pete Reichert, third from right), 1996. Originally Rocket swore it would play only backyard parties.
Rocket From the Crypt (John Reis, center; Pete Reichert, third from right), 1996. Originally Rocket swore it would play only backyard parties.
  • Soundtrack: Notes gave pathos to clouds

  • My father bought my first piano from the Briscoes in Sumter, South Carolina. We knew the Briscoes from church and because Brother Briscoe, as we called him, was in the Air Force like my father. They were poor, like all large Mormon families I knew. Sister Briscoe was thin and tall, with dry white skin and straight black hair that I would ponder during the long hours in church because it had been combed but not washed.
  • By Laura McNeal, Aug. 11, 2005
  • Tijuana Songbird

  • When Ginny Silva began her singing career, Tijuana’s Avenida Revolución was infamous, a raunchy place of strip clubs, where hookers and drug pushers worked in the open and where we young fellows went if we meant to get blasted and cut loose, or, if horny and shy, we preferred fantasy over real live girls. If we hoped to meet a companion who didn’t charge for her sweetness, yet probably hadn’t taken a vow of chastity — or else she wouldn’t go to Tijuana — we’d choose one of the dance clubs. Usually Mike’s Bar.
  • By Ken Kuhlken, Jan. 30, 2003
Ginny and Charly. "Every month I would have to tell Father Vitorio, ‘I sinned again.’ And after a while, he told me, ‘I can’t absolve you, because you have to make a decision.’"
  • Real Hardcore True Punk

  • The roots of the San Diego music scene run deep. Musicians who began gigging around town in the mid- to late 1980s later became the bedrock of the diverse early ’90s scene, which included bands like Rocket From the Crypt, Drive Like Jehu, Inch, and Three Mile Pilot. The musicians of this generation emerged from a rough punk and hardcore climate to form more melodic, lyrically based bands that caught the attention of major labels when the frenzied buzz of grunge broke in Seattle. But the sounds of San Diego’s early ’90s bands were unique and could hardly be termed grunge.
  • By Daniel Ridge, Oct. 17, 2002
Battalion of Saints, 1985. Guitarist Chris Smith overdosed in a bathtub, Dave Astor committed suicide, another member died of drug-related problems, and a fourth died from AIDS.
  • A Pit Stop on the FM Band

  • 6:00: Our listening session kicks off about a third of the way into "Take Me Out" by Franz Ferdinand. You know, past the intro gearshift. Ah, FM radio. It's like hanging out with that friend of yours with an mp3 library of only 500 songs. My friend Danny was like that in college. Some of his staples include Whitney Houston's "My Love Is Your Love," Radiohead's "I Might Be Wrong," and at least three different Ja Rule songs.
  • By Conor Lastowka, Aug. 17, 2006
Queens of the Stone Age. It segues into the Queens of the Stone Age's "Go with the Flow." If FM 94.9 was trying to be a nostalgia gap-closing classic rock station, I think they'd be doing okay.
  • Sax

  • "Well, you know, I, okay, let me see," Charles McPherson sounded more spirited than stumped.
  • I'd just asked a saxophone legend — Charles McPherson! — what originally attracted him to the saxophone. That was like asking the sun why it was hot. But McPherson's husky, perpetually happy-sounding voice shaded into a playful growl. "I guess we'll get into some primordial..." and then McPherson breathed in and started off —
  • By Geoff Bouvier, April 20, 2006
Marillo at the Apollo. "When I was ver-r-ry young, it was Jimmy Dorsey. The sweetness of his tone. And from there, it was Charlie Parker."
  • The Dream Is Over

  • Along with many vidiots my age, television was the teat that nurtured us all, and I was less weaned than most. I recall "discovering" the Beatles on a Smothers Brothers show from October 1968 (which I recently re-watched, spotting a then-unknown Steve Martin). I immediately bought any and every magazine that featured their likenesses — no small stack of reading material — and immersed myself for the first time in abject fandom (well, aside from my short-lived obsession with the Banana Splits).
  • By Jay Allen Sanford, Dec. 8, 2005
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Tom Sudberry, Peter Cooper give to Barbara Bry
Rocket From the Crypt (John Reis, center; Pete Reichert, third from right), 1996. Originally Rocket swore it would play only backyard parties.
Rocket From the Crypt (John Reis, center; Pete Reichert, third from right), 1996. Originally Rocket swore it would play only backyard parties.
  • Soundtrack: Notes gave pathos to clouds

  • My father bought my first piano from the Briscoes in Sumter, South Carolina. We knew the Briscoes from church and because Brother Briscoe, as we called him, was in the Air Force like my father. They were poor, like all large Mormon families I knew. Sister Briscoe was thin and tall, with dry white skin and straight black hair that I would ponder during the long hours in church because it had been combed but not washed.
  • By Laura McNeal, Aug. 11, 2005
  • Tijuana Songbird

  • When Ginny Silva began her singing career, Tijuana’s Avenida Revolución was infamous, a raunchy place of strip clubs, where hookers and drug pushers worked in the open and where we young fellows went if we meant to get blasted and cut loose, or, if horny and shy, we preferred fantasy over real live girls. If we hoped to meet a companion who didn’t charge for her sweetness, yet probably hadn’t taken a vow of chastity — or else she wouldn’t go to Tijuana — we’d choose one of the dance clubs. Usually Mike’s Bar.
  • By Ken Kuhlken, Jan. 30, 2003
Ginny and Charly. "Every month I would have to tell Father Vitorio, ‘I sinned again.’ And after a while, he told me, ‘I can’t absolve you, because you have to make a decision.’"
  • Real Hardcore True Punk

  • The roots of the San Diego music scene run deep. Musicians who began gigging around town in the mid- to late 1980s later became the bedrock of the diverse early ’90s scene, which included bands like Rocket From the Crypt, Drive Like Jehu, Inch, and Three Mile Pilot. The musicians of this generation emerged from a rough punk and hardcore climate to form more melodic, lyrically based bands that caught the attention of major labels when the frenzied buzz of grunge broke in Seattle. But the sounds of San Diego’s early ’90s bands were unique and could hardly be termed grunge.
  • By Daniel Ridge, Oct. 17, 2002
Battalion of Saints, 1985. Guitarist Chris Smith overdosed in a bathtub, Dave Astor committed suicide, another member died of drug-related problems, and a fourth died from AIDS.
  • A Pit Stop on the FM Band

  • 6:00: Our listening session kicks off about a third of the way into "Take Me Out" by Franz Ferdinand. You know, past the intro gearshift. Ah, FM radio. It's like hanging out with that friend of yours with an mp3 library of only 500 songs. My friend Danny was like that in college. Some of his staples include Whitney Houston's "My Love Is Your Love," Radiohead's "I Might Be Wrong," and at least three different Ja Rule songs.
  • By Conor Lastowka, Aug. 17, 2006
Queens of the Stone Age. It segues into the Queens of the Stone Age's "Go with the Flow." If FM 94.9 was trying to be a nostalgia gap-closing classic rock station, I think they'd be doing okay.
  • Sax

  • "Well, you know, I, okay, let me see," Charles McPherson sounded more spirited than stumped.
  • I'd just asked a saxophone legend — Charles McPherson! — what originally attracted him to the saxophone. That was like asking the sun why it was hot. But McPherson's husky, perpetually happy-sounding voice shaded into a playful growl. "I guess we'll get into some primordial..." and then McPherson breathed in and started off —
  • By Geoff Bouvier, April 20, 2006
Marillo at the Apollo. "When I was ver-r-ry young, it was Jimmy Dorsey. The sweetness of his tone. And from there, it was Charlie Parker."
  • The Dream Is Over

  • Along with many vidiots my age, television was the teat that nurtured us all, and I was less weaned than most. I recall "discovering" the Beatles on a Smothers Brothers show from October 1968 (which I recently re-watched, spotting a then-unknown Steve Martin). I immediately bought any and every magazine that featured their likenesses — no small stack of reading material — and immersed myself for the first time in abject fandom (well, aside from my short-lived obsession with the Banana Splits).
  • By Jay Allen Sanford, Dec. 8, 2005
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